Live and Express

Live and Express


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Let there be no illusions! #India’s #population is still at dangerous levels.

There’s a recent article on India’s population slowing down based on fertility rate studies. There are views expressed that finally we can heave a sigh of relief.

No.

That study is based on only the fertility rate – which is the new production of babies.  The truth and the fact is that we have already crossed the thresholds of healthy population rate multiple times as compared to the world standards (around 850 people per sq.km.). We already know that we are over-populated. Don’t we see that in the public places – people swarming with no respect to each others’ space and property?  When was the last time when anyone who’s coming in front of you, considered your presence, slowed down, and let you walk, in India?  We are 1.3 billion in number – 17% of world’s population!

Our agricultural lands are decreasing – because of unavailability of labour (movement to cities), water sources are draining out – because of new storage points not being planned, our air and environment are getting more polluted – not to mention about the new manufacturing oriented development agenda.

If you look at the map in the above article, you will see that the fertility rates themselves are on the higher side in the central Indian states.  This is in addition to the already dangerous levels of population in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh and Jharkhand. Literacy levels are low in these states, and they move to other states for labour. In fact, they generate babies for labour.

So, nothing for consolation. We need to act to take the message of dangers of over-population to the rural through grass-root workers of NGOs and social enterpreneurship companies – provide economic well-being and thus preventing them from generating babies for labour, and the message to adopt instead of generating new babies in cities.

And this has to done in a feverish scale. And bring down the child birth rate (incorrect to call it as fertility rate) to around 1 in the states mentioned above. Only then, we can breath, no pun intended.

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Can we leave coffee, tea and milk for good ?

Please feel free to re-blog this blog. This is public information, written for awareness for everyone’s well-being.  Spread it far and wide.

Some 10 years back, I left coffee. I was told by someone that coffee and tea are nervous stimulants, which, when taken without discretion, will lead to nerves weakness. The effect of nerves weakness will be the inability to sit peacefully at one place. No, I am not talking about meditation. Even for getting your work done at your computer, looking and attending to files in the office in a careful way, doing any work diligently, studying for your exams be it school or college, you need calm and alertness, which will be available to you only if your system is stable.

Coffee and tea will give you the sudden briskness with which you can carry on with your immediate tasks, but on a long run, it will lead to inability to focus and sit calm and alert to attend to whatever you are doing.

More so in the old age, when you have nothing much to do – you are retired, your kids are settled, and you enjoy your bliss – if you find yourselves restless, that will be very sad. Your mind will want to be active, but your body won’t co-operate, and you will be a mess.

There’s one more aspect to it – which is milk that’s added to the coffee and tea, in the Indian context.  If you don’t add milk, it’s even worse, because the ill-effects is more-prone and immediate.

But, if you have coffee and tea with milk, just consider where the milk is coming from. In western countries, there are complaints that cows are being artificially milked and they are sent to death long time before they are supposed to die – because they extract the milk faster and faster, and the cow loses the ability to give milk pretty soon.  Even in India, you might have seen loads of cows and buffaloes being carried in lorries and trucks. Where do you think they are being taken to? To get killed because of their inability to give milk.

Food that goes inside us is supposed to nourish us and give energy. Cow’s/buffalo’s milk, however, makes us dull and lethargic. Cows’ milk is meant for calves, and not for humans.

And food that goes into us is supposed to be a blessing and enable us to become better human beings.  Food that come from sources as mentioned above, and having the properties that tend to negatively influence our ability to perform at our full potential may not be good food options, isn’t it?

Especially in the context of India Population, where loads of milk is consumed by millions of people, it’s pretty necessary that we consider.

Please feel free to re-blog this blog. This is public information, written for awareness for everyone’s well-being.  Spread it far and wide.


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Restaurants and hotels, are you listening?

A recent report in THE HINDU newspaper said that 48.5% people of the Tamilnadu state live in cities (http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/urban-boom-altering-tn-population-profile/article4771065.ece).

The above is just to give you an idea about the population density in cities. And, the amount of food that is served to the people out there. Restaurants and hotels are a major chunk in the food distribution. We need to closely look at the food generation, utilization and wastage.

Ingredients of food like rice, fruits, vegetables, grains come from villages to cities. They are then distributed to the restaurants and hotels. The restaurants and hotels prepare the food, and deliver it to customers.  The customers eat and they waste too!

A study says that 3 out of 10 people all over the world are hungry each day. It’s a crime that we waste the food when there’s non-availability of food in some portions of the world. I have seen in restaurants and hotels that lot of food is getting wasted and just thrown away. It’s not only a cost problem, but it’s also a wastage and an environment problem, as unsegregated waste leads to environment issues.

Many steps can be taken by the restaurants and food chains in the city to prevent food waste:

  • When they procure, they carefully look at the demand-supply situation, and order only the quantity required
  • In spite of the above precaution, if ingredients are still not being used which might go waste, donate it to the elderly homes, orphanages and needy people
  • When the cooked food is served to the customer, and if the customer wastes it (which can be identified by the server as above some limit), then a ‘waste processing fee’ should be levied on the customer to clear the waste. Many times, especially in India, only money brings awareness and commitment to the people, so they will be afraid of paying penalty, and will not waste food. They will order only the amount of food that they can eat.  This ‘waste processing fee’ could be anywhere between 10 to 15 percent of the total cost of the ordered food. Notice boards can be kept in the hotel to make the customer aware that they will be charged if they waste food.
  • Ingredients can be shared among the food chains and hotels so that they don’t order stuff that is already available in some other hotel in the city. An online database of availability can be maintained between the partnering hotels so that they know among each other on what stuff is surplus

By following ideas like the above, food and its ingredients wastage can be considerably reduced.  Restaurants and hotels definitely have a huge role to play in avoiding food waste.


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Wasting food….

How would you feel – if you meticulously study from your 5 years of age to your college, and then just thrown out of the circulation without recognition?

That’s exactly the same when you throw & waste the food that’s put on your plate.
The food has come all the way from earth, taking in resources like water, labour & sweat, grew for 3-4 months, got transported from the village to a processing center, and then to your city, reached the shop, and you bought it. And how wise is it for you to just dump it in the trash just because you can’t eat it? If you can’t eat it, why do you allow it to be put in your plate in the first place? Or why did you ask for that extra second serving when you well know that you cannot complete it, and your stomach is full? Think !

We have a whole lot of people who don’t have one good food a day, and here we are wasting food in our own homes, not to mention the marriage halls and big show-off functions. I saw idlis and vadas (tasty) ones getting wasted in one of the institutions which expressly discourages wasting food ! Now, that’s sad. I am going to talk to the Principal and let him know.

At all levels, starting from buying the groceries, to cooking, to having the food in the plate, think twice, thrice & four times, whether you really need it. With the kind of population we have in India, we are going to have problems buying carrot (not caret!). And when that happens, you will feel the pinch! We need to change !