Sunday 28 January 2018

A Walk with Nature Chennai’s Snake and Guindy national park.

Before a tour of Chennai, I searched on Google the most attractive places of Chennai City. Within a blink of eye the result was on my desk top, one of those was Chennai’s Snake (Reptile Zoo) and Guindy Children’s park.

Chennai Snake Park

I started my first day by visiting The Guindy Children’s park and Chennai Snake Park (Reptile Zoo).It is India's first reptile park, situated in heart of main city near IIT-Madras. The entry fees of Guindy national park is Rs. 20.00 per person Adults,Rs.10.00 per person Children, and Rs 20.00 per still camera, 100.0 per video camera .

The Guindy Children’s park and Chennai Snake Park are located in the same campus but have separate entrances. First, I entered in Chennai’s Snake Park.

Snake Park (Reptile Zoo).Entered the world of magnificent reptiles at Guindy Snake Park. It is home of wide range of snakes such as adders, pythons, vipers, cobras and other reptiles. The Snake Park is maintained very well. The park has a collection of snakes that live in land, and also the ones that live in water. In addition, the park had crocodiles and turtles. 
A Python in Chennai Snake Park

There, I found large collection of stuffed snakes coiled around pillars. There was one enclosure that was filled with close to 25 crocodiles. Apart from snakes and crocs, there were Star TurtlesIndian monitor lizard and chameleons in the endangered category. 

There is a small auditorium with a ceiling-mounted projector, wall-mounted screen and a touch-screen kiosk for conducting classes for visiting students. There are also facilities for projecting from the kiosk to the wall-mounted screen. 

Guards at Snake Park

The park has a museum of preserved specimens of reptiles and amphibians and a library with a stock of books and journals on reptiles and related subjects. The park also demonstrates venom extraction from snakes

Guindy Children’s park.Guindy National Park was established in the year of 1976.Which has a 2.70 km2 protected area. The park is an extension of the grounds surrounding Raj Bhavan, formerly known as the 'Guindy Lodge', the official residence of the Governor of Tamil Nadu. It extends deep inside the governor's estate, enclosing beautiful forests, scrub lands, lakes and streams.

Guindy National park has a very unique history : In the early 1670s, a garden space was carved out of the Guindy forest and a residence called the Guindy Lodge was built by Governor William Langhorne (1672–1678), which had helped make St Thomas Mount a salubrious place for rest and recreation.

The remaining of the forest area was a game reserve, and owned by Gilbert Roderick's, a British citizen. When Gilbert Roderick died, in 1821 the Tamil Nadu government purchased it and the surrounding wooded property for a sum of Rs. 35,000/.
The place was declared as reserved forests in 1910. Spotted deer were introduced into the park probably after 1945. Between 1961 and 1977, about 172 ha of the forest, primarily from the Raj Bhavan, was transferred to various government departments in order to build educational institutions and memorials.
In 1958, a portion of the forest area was transferred to the Union Education Ministry for establishing the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. The Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru allotted a portion of the Guindy forest as a park for children. In 1958, it was handed over to the Forest department.
For the nature lovers like me it was a treat to their eyes. The Guindy Children’s park is more like a zoo than a national park! Most of the animals and birds are kept inside cages, just like a zoo. On entering the park, I found there lot of school excursions, but not felt crowded as the place was big enough to accommodate all.

 This was a quite huge and covered a wider variety of flora and fauna. The park was filled with animals and birds of most kinds. One can find a variety of monkeys, AntelopeBlack buckChital, dears, sambarhyena, jackal, grey pelicancormorantcockatielpeacocksemuparrots
One can also find a few salt water crocodiles. There is a huge enclosure for birds and it is filled with colorful variety of birds. The park has a collection of over 120 species of birds such as the spotted billed or Grey Pelicans, the painted Stork, grey heron, raptors and sea-eagles, name a few.

It was a very romantic feeling in roaming the lanes and pathways lined with trees giving a scenic moment to walk through life. Walk together through the lanes and pathways, sit, relax and unwind amidst the solitude of the wild, bird watching, sitting under huge green canopies providing shade and cool the place.
There was a canteen just outside this park and some snacks are  and many coconut water selling stalls along the way.

At the end of a trip of nature in “Chennai’s Snake and Guindy national park”, my camera was full of wonderful memories, what I experienced the jungle right in the heart of a metropolitan city like Chennai, where you could breathe fresh air and enjoy the music of the dancing trees!

Saturday 27 January 2018

Republic Day Celebrations in Aligarh Muslim University-2018

The Indian Republic Day in AMU Aligarh is celebrated every year on 26 January. It is a very important day for the people of India. It was on this day that India got its own constitution and became a Sovereign Democratic Republic. In the same sprite AMU celebrated the 69th Republic Day with vigor and gaiety at the Strachey Hall, to mark the anniversary of the day the country's Constitution that was adopted in 1950.

Dr. Tariq Mansoor and Registrar at  Republic Day Celebration in AMU Aligarh
After a customary parade by NCC cadets and unfurling of the Tricolor, National Anthem , Was presented by AMU Tarana Team.

“Jana Gana Mana Adhinaayak Jaya Hey,
Bhaarat Bhaagya Vidhaataa
Panjaab Sindhu Gujarat Maraatha,
Draavid Utkal Banga
Vindhya Himaachal Yamuna Ganga,
Uchchhal Jaladhi Taranga
Tav Shubh Naamey Jaagey,
Tav Shubh Aashish Maange
Gaahey Tav Jayagaathaa
Jana Gana Mangal Daayak,
Jaya Hey Bhaarat Bhaagya Vidhaataa
Jaya Hey, Jaya Hey, Jaya Hey,
Jaya Jaya Jaya, Jaya Hey”

Later Professor Tariq Mansoor Vice Chancellor addressed guests. He said,"We owe to our Motherland the duty of nation building and the road to making a prosperous India calls for dedication, integrity and seriousness of purpose. “Since independence, we have, no doubt, achieved much in many domains,” said the Vice-Chancellor adding that India is a self-reliant, fast developing economy and we are increasingly recognized across the globe as an economic powerhouse. He said that India’s greatest strength lays in its pluralism, cultural, linguistic and religious diversity.
He added that the young have tremendous potential and idealism which results in the emergence of a prosperous, successful and a happy nation. "You, our young students, wedded to the goals of social justice, equality and fraternity can and should play meaningful and constructive roles,"
 “Let AMU be the catalyst for educational needs of weaker sections of society and let us carry forward the message of our founder Sir Syed Ahmad Khan with renewed vigour and enthusiasm,” said Prof Mansoor.
Mr. Mashkoor Usmani--President of AMU Students Union
Nabila Zehra (R) Cabinet Member of AMU Students Union
The Vice-Chancellor later distributed prizes to the winners of ‘Run for Unity and Peace’ organised by the Athletics Club, Games Committee. Students of Ahmadi School for Visually Challenged, who won the ‘Half Marathon Race for Unity’ in the Girl’s and Boy’s events, also received prizes.
The program ended with University Tarana.

Thursday 25 January 2018

Mysterious Story Of Princess Niloufer’s Brooch of Hyderabad

This is mysterious story of a brooch (which a jeweler, in disguise, copied a stunning design from the French).This was in custody of Princess Niloufer of Hyderabad. She was married to Prince Moazzam Jaah in 1931. This mysterious tale of Princess Niloufer’s Brooch starts In 1869. The Emperor of France, Napoleon III and his wife, Empress Eugenie visited Istanbul in Turkey.  At that time, Sultan Abdul Aziz ruled the Ottoman Empire. 
Diamond Brooch of Empress Eugenie of France
On social occasions during the visit, Empress Eugenie sported a diamond belt Brooch on her dress. The jewel sparkled and glittered in the dazzling light of the chandeliers in the palace.  Many of the Turkish ladies, watching the Empress from behind latticed screens, were impressed by the sparkle in the Brooch. When word went back to the Sultan about the buckle, he resolved to get it copied.  
Empress Eugenie of France
But how do you get an Empress to show her belt brooch? In the end, it was very simple. A jeweler was invited to an event where the Empress was to be present. Assuming that the Empress would be standing for some time, the jeweler dressed as a woman and stood behind the latticed screens.

Unfortunately for him, the Empress was carried away by the music from the Turkish band and danced the entire evening.  The jeweler did the best he could to observe and copy the pattern of the Brooch. You can see the Empress’s Brooch and what the jeweler created.
Princess Niloufer  the last beguiling Ottoman Princess of Hyderabad
Although not exactly the same, the result was still quite an astounding masterpiece. Having designed it, the jeweler then set about fixing the diamonds.  To maximize the reflection, he cut each diamond in the shape of a rose. It took 40 diamonds to complete the brooch. When he showed it to the ladies at the palace, they were suitably impressed.
This buckle passed from Sultan Abdul Aziz to Sultan Murad V. In turn, Murad V gave it to his granddaughter, Princess Adile Sultana.  When Adile’s daughter Niloufer married Moazzam Jah in 1931, this buckle was part of her wedding trousseau. 
Napoleon iii Emperor of France
As soon as she reached Hyderabad, Princess Niloufer realized it would be of no use in a land of sarees. She had a pin installed on the back of the buckle, and used it as a brooch. After her divorce in 1952, Princess Niloufer went to Paris.  Much later, when she married Edward Pope, she had changed to wearing clothes in the European style. The brooch was not used much, and it lay consigned to a box. After her death, Edward Pope moved back to USA. When he married Evelyn Maddox, he gave her the brooch. 
The Ottoman Caliph Sultan Abdul Aziz

Upon Edward’s death, Evelyn distributed many of the Niloufer papers and paraphernalia to institutions. After Evelyn death in 2014, her son listed That Brooch for auction. Luckily due to keen interest taken by Mr Arvind Acharya, a fan of Hyderabad’ history, this Brooch is kept in a safe box in a bank in the United States. Here ends the mysterious Tale Of Princess Niloufer’s Brooch.
Empress Eugenie  and Emperor Napoleon iii of France
The Story of this mysterious Brooch of Princess Niloufer’s of Hyderabad has been posted by Engr Maqbool Akram-----With help of Wikipedia and other materials available on net 

Tuesday 23 January 2018

Ten Common Reasons: Why Employees Shift Their Work Places

A steady, well-trained workforce is one of the many keys to a successful business. It’s always a significant loss,when company's time and resources are invested in an employee who then shifts their work place. During studies in B-Schools, I was taught: Shifting Employees from one company to other. Since then I was trying to learn the reasons of this premature shifting. Employees Shift for many reasons. I have short listed Ten most common reasons for Employees shifting.

During initial days of first job, an employee put down papers and left the company that was the wretched situation for me as employee left due to unorganized and messy work style of manager.

Employees Leaving work Place

I want to highlight that employee can leave company not only for career growth; better role; designation; salary but also for the reasons which are not visible to us. Everyone wants to be recognized and rewarded for a job well done. It’s part of our nature. Recognition does not have to be monetary. The most effective recognition is sincere appreciation. 

HR plays crucial and significant role in employee relations and grievance handling and they must highlight out of sight reasons that leads to exit of employee.

Reasons for shifting worlplace

The following is a list of what might be considered 10 most common reasons for employee in shifting their work place.
1.    Team politics
2.    Clash with manager
3.    Do not provide flexibility to employee
4.    No work-life balance
5.    Not allowing leaves during important events of life
6.       No scope of suggestion and mentoring in team
7.      Feeling undervalued. 
8.     Growth opportunities not available.
9.    Wrong people were promoted or fired
10. Employers didn't care about employees

HR must be proactive to analyze high/medium/low risk employees that could be on the edge of leaving company.
Suggestions and measures initiated by HR
HR must be proactive to analyze high/medium/low risk employees that could be on the edge of leaving company.
Few suggestions and measures to be initiated from HR:
  1. Keep documentation of manager feedback write soft and hard skill of employees
  2. Frequent interaction with employees to know out of sight reason highlighted
  3. Communicate with managers about company policy
  4. HR are not meant to sit at their desk with laptop but for employee interaction
“If you just communicate with employee you can get by, but if you communicate skillfully you can work miracles”
However, in order to reduce this shifting, management must first understand the main reasons employees leave for other positions. Good employees don’t leave good organizations—they leave poor managers!

     This blog is shared by Guest Blogger Sheeba Siddiqui: An HR Expert. 

Wednesday 17 January 2018

Sir Syed Bicentenary Alumni Meet of AMU. Aligarh-2017-2018

It was a nostalgia occasion for hundreds of Aligarh Muslim University alumni, to attend the Sir Syed Bicentenary AMU Alumni Meet—2017.They assembled again in Kennedy Auditorium of Chaman-E-Syed to connect with each other to refresh their old memories. 
Inauguration of Sir Sayed Bicentenary Alumni Meet of AMU Aligarh (2017-2018) in Kennedy Auditorium
The Function: Sir Syed Bicentenary Alumni Meet of AMU Aligarh, was started with recitation from Holy QURAN. It was two days meet: 15th and 16th October 2017. Followed by High Tea, Lunch breaks and a grand dinner at Lawn of Sir Syed House. The seed which Sir Syed sowed in 1877, had grown up into a mighty tree: that is now Aligarh Muslim University.

Audience :Sir Syed Bicentenary Alumni meet of AMU Aligarh (2017-2018) in Kennedy Auditorium

Audience:Sir Syed Bicentenary Alumni meet of AMU Aligarh (2017-2018) in Kennedy Auditorium
The 17TH October 2017 makes the 200th birth anniversary. Of Sir Syed Ahmad Khan (17 October-27 March 1898). Any mention of Sir Syed is incomplete without a mention of his enduring belief in education as a Panacea for over coming difficulties.Like many reformers of his time,he believed in rational thought and science to solve problems.
Audience:Sir Syed Bicentenary Alumni meet of AMU Aligarh (2017-2018) in Kennedy Auditorium

The 17TH October 2017 makes the 200th birth anniversary. Of Sir Syed Ahmad Khan (17 October-27 March 1898). Any mention of Sir Syed is incomplete without a mention of his enduring belief in education as a Panacea for over coming difficulties.Like many reformers of his time,he believed in rational thought and science to solve problems.

Audience :Sir Syed Bicentenary Alumni meet of AMU Aligarh (2017-2018) in Kennedy Auditorium

The 17TH October 2017 maks the 200th birth anniversary. Of Sir Syed Ahmad Khan (17October-27March 1898). Any mention of Sir Syed is incomplete without a mention of his enduring belief in education as a Pnacea for over coming difficulties.Like many reformers of his time,he believed in rational thought and science to solve problems.

Sir Syed wanted the Muslims of his period to embrace change and move forward.He felt that there could be no conflict between the work of God(i,e the natural word) and the the words of God (i,e Quran).

Inaugural function was presided by Dr Tariq Mansoor,AMU Vice Chancellor.Chief Guest was Prof. Tahir Mahmood (Former chairman,National Commission of Minorities,GOI).Guest of Honours were :Mr Dawood Bin Ozair,(CEO,Blue Star Dubai),Mr Ambrish Kenghe(Vice President,Myntra)and Mr  Manoj Yadav IPS(Joint Director,IB,Ministary of Home Affairs,GOI).
Prof O P Kalra (Vice Chancellor, Pt H L Sharma University of Health Sciences), who attended the function said that he came to Aligarh to appear in the MBBS entrance exam with hardly any money and a place to stay. 

“I stayed in a Gurudwara and was selected in the waiting list for admission in MBBS,” said Prof Kalra adding that my candidature for admission was selected in AMU’s Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College and Banaras Hindu University’s Medical College at the same time.
 “My father advised me to attend AMU and taught me Urdu,” recalled Mr Kalra pointing out that a few years ago he visited his hostel room and found a research scholar of Sanskrit from a Muslim background residing in his room.

 “This is exactly what Sir Syed’s vision was,” he said adding that a student from a Hindu background like him learnt Urdu in AMU, while a Muslim boy becomes a researcher scholar of Sanskrit in the same University.

A special attraction of the meet was a session of AMU’s women achievers in which Prof Yasmin Saikia (Arizona State University), Mrs Arifa Khanam (Senior journalist), Mrs Sabiha Saeed (Vice President, KPMG), Mrs Tasneem Rasol Boaz (Indian Railway Traffic Services), Prof Nuzhat Parveen Khan (Dean, Faculty of Law, Jamia Milia Islamia), Mrs Ghazala Kohkan Shamsi (New York, USA) and Mrs Taab Siddiqui (Owner, Harvest Gold Food India) were the panelists

Meanwhile a session on Aligarh Open University, a platform through which AMU alumni spread all over the world share knowledge and experiences with current university students was also organised.This session was chaired by Prominent Scientist Dr Shahid Jameel CEO, Welcome Trust (India DBT Alliance).

The meet ended with University Tarana and the National Anthem.Fully packed Kennedy Auditorium was burst into clapping like a thunderbolt.
Ye dasht-e-junoo diwano ka, ye bazm-e-wafa parwano ki
Ye shahr-e-tarab roomano ka, ye khuld-e-barin armano ki
        Written, photographed and posted by Engr Maqbool Akram.