Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Spurious drugs

I am not sure how many people are even aware of this problem; but recently, I came face to face with this. I normally purchase a medicine that is imported and hence on the costly side. When my dad went to purchase the medicine this time, the guy gave him a strip that was from a different company and had no manufacturing date/ expiry date on it; It was also significantly cheaper; when questioned, he gave some vague answers. Finally, my dad did not buy it from him.
But, how do we common people find out if a drug is the original / fake? We can look out for the normal signs - the batch numbers. The manufactured date, expiry dates, company details;
But these guys are so innovative these days that they have even managed to forge company logos and seals.
Some of these drugs don’t do the work and act as just placebos; but there are others which cause some adverse reactions and these are worse.
Check out this article on the death penalty for these spurious drug makers. India to give death penalty to makers of spurious drugs - Newindpress.com
There is one line this that sums it up. "Those making spurious drugs are committing a crime greater than those committing a murder. A murderer is responsible for ending the life of one person but those in this spurious drugs are committing mass murder."

There are also some drugs that are marketed in India but have been globally banned.
Please check out these two links
Discarded Drugs
Irrational combinations

Saturday, November 13, 2004

Karpagambal Mess

I had breakfast at the Karpagambal mess. If you are looking for ambience, this is not the place; but if you want tasty and authentic Tamil tiffin items, then, this is the place to head. The coffee is the best.
There are a couple of places I know that fall into this category - Royal Cafe, Rathna cafe.
Know of any more ?
I went to Kapaleeswarar temple this morning. Somehow, the feeling that I get in this temple, I don’t get in any of the temples at Bangalore. (Too commercialized? I dont know.) Even Kapaleeswarar temple has become more commercial in the last few years; but I still feel it’s much better than quite a few other temples. I can see loads of changes here after the kumbhabhishekam. It is neater than earlier for one. The other thing is that they have placed name plates at most of the places for people who are not aware. One thing I missed was the pictures of various lakshmis in the karpagambal sannidhi. They have removed all of them.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Kanchi Shankaracharya arrested!!

This is shocking news.
Kanchi seer arrested

Cracker of a Deepavali

The build up was so much;the day flew by and before I knew it, it’s over.
Well, I still got 3 days to recover from all the fun. :-)
Got a wakeup call from my sister at 4.45 and then there was no going back to sleep.
Put a little oil on my hair for tradition’s sake and then out of the house by 5.30... The morning saw just a sample of the crackers that were to come in the evening... as we were meeting up with my sister in the evening.
Back inside the house by 6.30 and then TV for some time... There was a program on DD on MS.. That was a good one. And Nityashree was on another channel. I did quite a bit of browsing for sometime... lots of good programs and unable to stick to one.
And of course... all the sweets, karam and the deepavali marundhu!!!!!
The evening saw the Chennai sky lighting up with all fancy aerial shots.
The cracker industry is definitely getting more innovative with its designs and the names too. I heard that this year they had something called “Veerapan vedi”... though I did not find it.
Evening was spent at my sister’s place. My brother and brother- in-law must have a hole in the pocket with the amount of cracker they had bought. We started the cracker bursting at 6.30 and ended by about 8.30. The sky was beautiful. It was like there was a competition among the houses on the street. Each house would send up some lovely shots... You just had to stand on the terrace and keep looking at the sky. We had very less of the sound making ones and more of the ones that light up the sky. Of course, there was the mundane “busvanam” and “changu chakaram”.

A little thought here to my friends in the US. I felt really bad when I saw their mails. They are missing out on the “feel” of Deepavali that we have here. One of them had written “It’s just another normal day here.” I think that sums it up for them. But I do hope they do have a good time when they get home after work and try to pass on something of this great festival of lights on to their children.

Sorry for the long post.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Chennai....Sights and sounds

I am back at Chennai after a long gap of six months.. That’s a long gap considering that I was at Bangalore that is an overnight journey from here.
The train journey was fine except for the fact that the guy on the side berth was snoring so badly, it sounded like somebody had set fire to crackers there!!
Normally, I get down at Central and take the bus from there; but today, when I reached the bus, it was too crowded and I could have not managed with my luggage. Hence, an auto.. I hate to begin my Chennai visit with the haggling with the auto guys and that’s one reason I like to take the bus. Second, it’s nice to have that early morning drive and catch the sights and sounds of Chennai.. the tea kadais that are open at that time, the newspaper guys sorting the papers and hurrying to deliver it.
I always watch out for the changes that have happened since my last visit. One thing I noticed this time was that there used to be some clothing shop on Mount Road (forgot the name), but that has been replaced by a Sony World showroom.
I was looking out for the movies running at Satyam.. and then the small things that the speed breaker near my house has been removed and the road has been leveled.

I am yet to get the traditional “new” dress for Deepavali.. Am I brave enough to venture into T.Nagar? Not sure yet.. Let me see how the day goes.

Monday, November 08, 2004

Proud Owner

Yes, We are the proud owners of an apartment in the city of Bangalore.
Finally got the flat registered yesterday.
After all the struggles and fights with the builder, that one moment of realisation when I signed on the document was worth it. A Diwali gift!! :-))

Sunday, November 07, 2004

Tried the microwave.. but I was not able to use the conventional oven. The guy who came for the demo knew only Kannada and I had no clue what he was trying to say.. So, I had to send him back.
And so made the cake using the microwave option and it was a total disaster !! :-((
Only saving grace of the weekend, the sweets I made for Deepavali turned out well.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

I am waiting to try out the microwave that we got last weekend. Since we got the festival offer, we got a lot of add-ons.
There's going to be a good amount of baking and cooking this weekend. :-)

Hidden Costs

I needed a connection for internet at home. I was using BSNL till sometime back; but since I was shifting houses often, I thought I will go with a wireless connection.
I went with Reliance - Rs 1000 package. While taking the connection, I told them that this was mainly for internet purposes as I already carry a mobile. (I thought that this meant that even if I don’t make any calls, my minimum bill will be 1000)
For the last 2 months, my bill has been 1100 + , 1200 +.
When I enquired, they informed me that if use he phone for internet, they levy "ISP charges", over and above that 1000; which means that if I don’t use the phone to make any calls, but use the phone for internet connection alone, my phone bill be around 1500 !!!
After all the explanations, I gave to the guy about using the phone only for internet, this was the package given to me.
Was he unaware of these charges when he explained to me ? Their brochure also very cleverly hides this fact.

I guess its time for me to get a broadband connection.. But who knows what are the hidden charges in that !

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

On the way to office, there was a traffic jam at a signal.. Just when I am wondering why the traffic lights are not functioning and where the cops were, I can see three of them on one side of the road. They were totally oblivious to the jam and looking at something. On closer examination, I realised that they were admiring the seargent's mobile phone !!
Wish I had a camera with me at that time !!