Monday, November 28, 2011

The creative man behind ZP Stalls at the Dasara Exhibition grounds

If Zilla Panchayat (ZP) stalls at Mysore Dasara Exhibition Grounds have become the cynosure of attraction, then it was possible largely due to the creativity of one dextrous artist who has been working relentlessly for the past 20 years creating models, miniatures, and paintings, to educate the masses about the various government schemes and also inform them of the government's achievements.

Artist D Ananda Murthy is the talented man educating the people through his creative displays. He introduced for the first time the Dinasorous with sound effect inside Dasara expo premises. He then took up working simultaneously on the Mysore ZP and various other stalls and has won first place three times and expecting this year too.

Most of his works are based on educating rural folk about the various schemes specially meant for them like the Udyog Scheme, Right to Employment and Information utilizing creatively designed three-dimensional models, awareness on proper usage of water, its conservation are also displayed. In addition to this he has created replica of KRS Reservoir complete with illumination and also the Harangi Reservoir.

Stall of Suvarna Grama (depicting a model village) has come out very well. The miniature life like models used here makes one spellbound. Here he has brought out the measures to be taken to develop a village, protect underground water, sustainable agriculture methods, imparting quality education, holding Panchayat meetings and other such issues. All these concepts have been explained using models and not photographs / flexboards. Last year he had chosen rain water harvesting, mid-day meal, importance of compulsory primary education and others.

He claims that he was the first to sketch pictures of the most notorious forest brigand Veerappan in different angles and helped cops to get a true portrait of his appearance. Based on the details provided to him by the eye-witness, he creates their rough sketch and helping the Police department to nab culprits. He is doing this work freely.

He says 'Since 1992, some officials brought changes in ZP stalls and gave the contract for artists. As I was interested in rendering social service and want to create awareness among people through the medium of art, I enjoy this work. The art works are understood by everyone and I think educating people is also a from of social service.'

Thursday, November 17, 2011

This Physically challenged girl wills to reach higher extent in sports

As the adage goes, where there is a will there is a way, this 17-year-old physically challenged girl has willed to reach greater heights not just in her academics but also in sports.

PS Netravathi was born with the entire left fore-arm, wrist and hand missing below the elbow. Without feeling hurt for the loss of her limb, she took to sports, stood courageously against all odds, challenging other sports persons by participating in competitions.

While most teenagers of her age, especially with such a handicap, shy away from sports. But Netravathi, a first year BA student of Maharani's College became the cynosure of all eyes when she took part in the 83rd three-day Athletic meet organized by the University of Mysore at Oval Grounds on Tuesday.

Taking part in high-jump, long-jump and running race, she became an instant attraction for the crowds who had assembled there to watch the sporting activities. Hailing from Palahalli in Mandya District, Netravati is proud daughter of Srinivas and Lakshmidevi who are both agriculturists.

Having participated in several events since childhood, she has won several medals and certificates. Strangely, she has not been selected to represent the State in the sports events held at national-level.

She has plans of become a teacher in future, while at the same time continue with her sporting activities. So far she hasn't faced any problem to pursue with her sporting activities which in fact has even helped her to maintain good health. She is thankful to her parents and teachers for constantly encouraging her to participate in sporting events.

Though she could even play kho-kho with the same ease like others, she gave up after some time. Netravathi keeps herself fit by doing exercises regularly. She is good in painting too. 'I have keen liking for both academic as well as sports. But due to lack of adequate financial support, it is not possible to get appropriate training and achieve further in sports,' she says.

Sheshanna, a senior sports person opined that it's quite arduous to participate in the long jump event with just one hand, as both hands are needed to propel the body forward in the beginning before taking the plunge. But still Netravathi is able to compete with normal contestants and beat them. He advised her to continue her practice by joining a sports academy meant to train specially abled children.

Demand for White coloured vehicles go up in city

There were days when white coloured cars were meant only for taxis or for use by top bureaucrats and politicians. But for the past couple of months a new trend is emerging in the city as more number of people are opting for white coloured cars for their personal use. Earlier, white coloured cars was not much sought after, maybe for the reason that any dirt or dent would show up more prominently. But all of a sudden, the trend seems to have changed.

When Express contacted several vehicle dealers in city they reported a surge in demand for white coloured cars, especially this year the demand being even more.
About 30 per cent of the bookings was for white coloured vehicles with the reason cited by the dealers was that the bright reflective surface made them even more shining under the sun-light.

According to sources in the Honda showroom, unable to cope with the demand they stopped booking for white coloured vehicles for the past one and half months. The demand for white colour is more in models like the Activa, Duo, Vego, Pleasure and Access.

Dealers of Toyota, Friendly Motors, informed that more people are asking for white coloured cars which was not so in previous years. Saleem of Bababudangiri said that countable people who brought their old cars for repainting opted for white colour. Urs Kar's Lakshmikanth Raj Urs said that white colour won't match for all vehicles and as far as Maruti is considered the fast moving colour is silver.

`When buying expensive items like vehicles and high end mobiles, the choice of colour becomes more critical. Its the matter of status symbol and observed by everybody. White colour vehicles gives professional look,' says Mallika who owns white Tata Sumo.

'Compare to other colours white colour is very eye-catching and pleasant. Earlier, very rarely we used to come across white colour vehicles. But at present we can see good number of white colours vehicles on road,' says Divya, Student of JSS College Student who has White Access.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

ISRO Scientist constructs eco-friendly house at Vijayanagar

Here is a Environmentalist, who has constructed an eco-friendly house in his 40ft x 60ft site at Vijayanagar. Prof Venkataramaiah Jagannatha, a Civil Engineer working as a Scientist in ISRO, is the environmentalist who has constructed a house adopting Eco-friendly features that makes maximum utilization of the natural resources.

He has installed a mini solar wind hybrid power generating system atop his house that generates electricity which is stored in rechargeable batteries. The cost incurred to install the entire setup was Rs1 lakh, of which he invested Rs 50,000 on his own while the remaining Rs 50,000 he availed subsidy from CREDAL. Whenever there is a power outage, the inverter takes over the power supply. Apart this, the family member use power from batteries daily for two hours, which lessens the electricity bill.

Not only rain water harvesting but also recycling of used water has been done very effectively. In a 10 x 3 x 3 wet land system, water coming out of the drainage pipe after bathing and washing clothes is collected in a separate tank after gravel treatment and is stored in another tank which is used for flushing toilets and watering gardens, thereby reducing the demand for fresh water.

Rain water is collected in the sump and the excess is made to flow into a 250 meter deep borewell. The rainwater flows through a PVC Casing pipe and is filtered before it allowed flow into the borewell. This apart, he segregates the biodegradable wastes generated within his house and produces manure from it. He says everyone should segregate wastes beforehand and by doing this about 30 kg of manure can be produced from 100 kg of wet waste, and can can be used for gardening.

At the time of constructing his house he has used hollow clay bricks instead of regular ones as they provide better thermal insulation. This reduces the need for using fans or air coolers as the temperature inside the house will be much lower than outside providing more natural cooling.

Know how to identify GMO Food?

While heated debates on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) is going on throughout the world, I contacted Southern Action on Genetic Engineering (SAGE), Convenors Ramachandra and PV Satheesh to know more about it. Here are the excerpts:

What exactly are GMO and GM Foods?
Any organism whose basic genetic structure, DNA, has been artificially altered is known as GMO or Genetically Modified Organism or sometimes Genetically Engineered (GE) organisms. The technology allows selected individual genes to be transferred from one organism to another as also between non-related species.

Genetic Engineering artificially forces genetic material between species. This completely alters the genetic make up of the host organism thereby destroying its biological integrity. The method used is to force a selected gene [a virus or a bacteria] into the DNA of the host plant [tomato, brinjal or rice] using a 'gene gun' or through bacterial infection.

To quote a few examples: Inactivated Hepatitis or Cholera viruses are transferred into a banana plant which then produce bananas which are edible vaccines. Similarly a silkworm gene is introduced into a grape seed to protect grapevines from a disease called Pierce’s disease. Unlike Hybrids where plants from same family are used [wheat to wheat], GE technology allows genes of plants to be implanted with animals, insects and bacteria to produce what the detractors of the technology call a Frankenstein food.

While scientists developing GMO foods claim such methods increase crop yields, provide resistance against pests, enhance nutritional qualities in foods and so on, these have been proved false by opposing scientists, environmentalists and farmers organizations all over the world.

How to identify GMO Food ?

In foreign countries, there are small detection kits that consumers can carry and detect and they have enacted laws to display GM Foods on separate shelves in shops and Supermarkets along with a prominent sign to display that it contains GM ingredients.

In India, GE products are not allowed officially to be sold in the market and there is no permission to import it. But there are suspicions that they are sold clandestinely. The most suspect products are the imported Soyabean and Corn products. As we don’t have an effective regulatory mechanism to screen GE foods, Indian consumers are forced to eat them unknowingly.

Hence, in India a law should be enforced to label GM food items which helps buyers to know what they are eating and a different structure should be constituted for consent vigilance. One GMO Food detection kit has been found by SAGE Convenor Satheesh.

How to avoid consuming GM Foods ?
Several European countries have already banned GM Foods and in India as far now only Bt Cotton is grown and experiments is going on about another 25 foods items.
Developed countries publicize the produces their failed products over developing countries as a trial and error basis. Consumer should not buy any imported foods that contain corn, soybean, potato or tomato. These food have a high probability of being genetically engineered and since no company provides this information on the label there is no way of knowing for sure if the imported food contains GM ingredients are not. Therefore the safest route is to avoid such foods.

Amidst advanced technology why so much of opposition?
When proponents of GE crops claim that they withstand pest attacks they are showing only one side of the story. The most famous of these claims in India is that of Bt Cotton which is a cotton crop into which the gene of a soil bacteria called Bacillus Thurengisis has been forced. The Bt gene produces the Bt toxin which is produced from every part of the Bt cotton plant. Though as a result the most dreaded cotton pest, Helicoverpa Armigera, is contained, a sudden spurt in the attack of other pests like Aphids is observed.

We from the Deccan Development Society have ourselves done continuous research on hundreds of Bt cotton fields in AP for the last nine years and found that the soil in which Bt cotton was gown gradually turns turns toxic. In 2003 this was about 2 per cent of the soil on which Bt cotton was grown, but by 2007 it had grown to 40 per cent, a 20 fold increase. Thousands of animals which grazed on Bt cotton fields started dying.

People who had worked on Bt cotton fields were complaining of skin allergies and breathing disorders. Small and marginal farmers who cultivated Bt cotton in drylands suffered crop failures forcing several of them to commit suicide. Therefore the negative dimensions of the Bt cotton were so many that a large number of farmers had desparately tried to stop growing it. But by then all non Bt cotton had been withdrawn from the market by the Bt seed syndicate, as such farmers were forced to reluctantly continue growing Bt cotton.

Several countries have already enacted laws to display GM Foods on separate shelves in shops and Supermarkets along with a prominent sign to display that it contains GM ingredients. Will it be implemented here?

The contention here is that if the producers and sellers of GE crops feel that they are safe to be consumed by human beings and animals, let them label their produces that these are Genetically Engineered. Just the way organically grown foods are labeled as Organic, since that helps buyers to know what they are eating. But the GE industry has fought this practice tooth and nail as they fear that once consumers know that a produce is GE they might refuse to eat it. This is held out against the GE industry that if they are so confident of the safety of their produce why then should they oppose to its labeling?

In India, GE products are not allowed officially to be sold in the market. But there are suspicions that they are sold clandestinely. The most suspect products are the imported Soyabean and Corn products. Soyabean oils imported from abroad are used in popular food chains. As we don’t have an effective regulatory mechanism to screen GE foods, Indian consumers are forced to eat them unknowingly.

What is the present research status on the dangers of growing and consuming GM Foods.
There are several scientists who have studied and documented many harmful effects of consuming GE foods. In a seminal book titled, 'Genetic Roulette', one Prof Jeffrey Smith working with more than 30 scientists around the world, has documented 65 health risks caused by consuming GM foods.

His studies have documented several cases of toxic or allergic-type reactions in humans who grow and frequently come in contact with them, as also livestock falling sick and becoming sterile when they consumed such plants. Genetic contamination of other plants around these fields is the greatest threat, which is quite dangerous because genetic pollution cannot be reversed. Even organically grown crops can be affected if a GE crop is grown in its vicinity. Organic farmers in Seskachwan, a region of Canada have sued agrobiotech corporations for growing GE crops and polluting their crops.

Recently farmers here in Mysore went on a strike urging authorities to provide long staple varieties of Bt cotton seeds. How this sudden change was possible?
As illustrated earlier, Bt cotton has been a false messiah for farmers. The farmers are desperate to grow cotton because of the sudden increase in the market price. The non Bt cotton seeds have been more or less withdrawn by seed companies from the market since they can sell Bt seeds at higher rates and make fatter profits. That was the main reason for farmers’ demand for Bt cotton seeds.

Besides they still have not experienced the negative effects of Bt cotton, which begins to show after 3 to 5 years of its cultivation. In countries such as Indonesia and South Africa farmers who have been growing Bt cotton for over a decade are now incurring heavy losses because of soil erosion. It is the similar case with thousands of small farmers in Andhra Pradesh. They have all been caught in a web of deception and manipulation.

How to identify in market which vegetable grown using GM technology
There is no technology in India to do this. A Bt Brinjal or a Bt Cotton does not appear different from its non GE counterpart for sight. In Europe, where there is the highest consumer opposition to genetically engineered products, there are small detection kits that consumers can carry and detect which of the products has been infected by GE and which has not been. This device has not yet been made available in India.

The USA which is the largest consumer of GE foods is also a nation known for the highest obesity among its population. There are many evidences to say that nearly 25% of children in USA suffer from diabetes, BP, Autism. Many thinkers and scientists want serious research to see whether this is related to consumption of GE foods. But since large research funds are with biotech corporations, they are hardly interested to look into this area. The governments are too beholden to biotech corporations for their electoral funds, national incomes and employment generation etc. Hence they are not ready to fund research to uncover truth. That is why much of the world is kept ignorant about the dangers of GE foods.

Will there be a legislation to conduct field trials and use GM Foods by the Centre, noting so many advantages it has?

Alarmed by the strong opposition from farmers groups, scientists and environmentalists against the introduction of GE crops in the country, the Centre withdrew its plans of introducing GE Brinjal in the market with the result progressive environment ministers such as Jairam Ramesh. Eminent scientists such as Dr P M Bhargava and Dr Vijayan have been able to lead an enlightened debate on the issue and have argued that until India is capable of establishing its own reliable world standard bio-safety assessment systems, it should not allow field trials.


Enact laws to label on food items which are Genetically Engineered

The Southern Action on Genetic Engineering (SAGE) campaign to make 'Mysore Heritage City – GMO Free city' continues. In the same, an interaction programme on 'harmful effects of consuming GE foods and how its prevention' was held at Kala Suruchi on Sunday. SAGE District Convenor Ramachandra and Science Teacher Satish hold the interaction.

Satish said that any organism whose basic genetic structure, DNA, has been artificially altered is known as GMO. In an unnatural way the technology allows selected individual genes to be transferred from one organism into another and also between non-related species.

He says, this technology completely alters the genetic make up of the host organism destroying its biological integrity. The method used is to force a selected gene (virus or bacteria) into the DNA of the host plant (tomato, brinjal or rice) using a 'gene gun' or through bacterial infection.

'Proponents and scientists developing GMO foods claim growing crop using such method increase crop yields, provide resistance against pests, enhance nutritional qualities in foods and so on, these have been proved false by opposing scientists, environmentalists and farmers organizations all over the world,' he added.

Citing the example of BT Cotton he said that in India for Bt Cotton gene of a soil bacteria called Bacillus Thurengisis has been forced and the Bt gene produces the toxin from every part of the Bt cotton plant and the soil too turns toxic.

Ramachandra said that people who had worked on Bt cotton fields will have several cases of toxic or skin allergies and breathing disorders. When animals and inspects consume this they too die and even organically grown crops can be affected if a GE crop is grown in its vicinity.

Our policies are dictated by powers,

Stating our policies are dictated by powers, Ramachandra said that according to Biotechnology Regulatory Authority of India (BRAI) Bill, if the people spread or give any wrong information against GMO food, he will be jailed for three months and fine of Rs 1 lakh will be imposed and hence, most of the people are afraid to raise their voice.

Stating its need of the hour consumer should demand government to ban GMO food and to embrace organic foods, he said when compared to other countries our country should take at least care and morality to safeguard people. Media play major role in creating awareness about GMO, but unfortunately some of them are lagging behind, Satish alleged.

Power point presentation of Science Writer Nagesh Hegade about GN Crops ; Threat or Boon' and film 'Poison on the Platter' was screened on the occasion to create awareness among masses about GMO foods.

She makes rural children aware of current issues

Today's youth are not very inclined to involve themselves in social service activities. As soon as they complete graduation think of job and want to settle in life. But for Amulya Bharadwaj, who has been graduated this year in BBM at the Amrita School of Arts and Sciences securing second rank and winning a silver medal, it is not so.

She didn't rush to seek job in a multi-national company or set up a business venture of her own, instead she started concentrating more on doing social service which is being practiced by her from past several years.

She oftenly visit a school in Basavanagiri near H D Kote and during every visit she donates stationary items. Apart from visiting orphan homes she visits various charitable institutions in and around Mysore and she has made a routine on weekends to visit rural areas and help children in their studies.

She narrate a couple of moral stories to the children and inform children about the various current issues. She maintains a time-table for daily routine to be followed by children and provide tips on maintenance of hygiene.

She says her friends and parents have helped her to bring the idea to fruition and it gives her immense pleasure to work for the society. She says, 'I get a sense of satisfaction meeting these small children, especially those in rural areas, chat with them and help them with their studies.'

'An inspiration from the kids as initiated me to help out my classmates, who hailed from a rural background. It might be their stage-fear, to speak in front of the public, assisting them to speak in English confidently,' she says.

Amulya who has a helping nature and care about children is a good gymanstics too. She has began practicing Gymnastics at a very young age and she has represented Karnataka six times at the national level in Gymnastics.

Work and Study : She loves her job and education equally

'Instead of searching only after completion of education its better to find a job and pursue our studies simultaneously and gain experience'

21-year-old Asha who has a very positive outlook doesn't depend on anyone. She is doing her B.Com at Banumaiah's Evening College and working as an Assistant in the Auditing Office at a private establishment for the past two-and-half years. She says with her earnings she is capable to support her education and there is no need to depend on parents.

Asha has been able to balance both her academics and job quite ably as one is sustaining the other. She carries her books to the work place where she studies whenever she finds some spare time, though on Sundays she devouts most of her time on for studies. Her earnings are enough to support her education as well meet some personal and family expenditures.

She says, 'Instead of searching for a job only after completion of education as everybody does and then getting depressed when unable to get one, it is better to find a job and pursue our studies simultaneously so that we not only get working experience but also know the value of money. Apart this, reading books improves your knowledge, working on the job gives you the much needed experience as you come into contact with various kinds of people and also encounter different circumstances.'

According to her going to a day college doesn't serve any purpose as she is able to learn the same by attending an evening college along with having good working experience by fruitfully employed in the day. Being a B.Com student, working in the Accounts Department has brought her more cheers as she is in the same line of work as her studies. She doesn't own any vehicle and manages time by traveling in bus.

She even goes for typing classes in the morning at 7am and after that she leaves for her work where remain till 5.30 pm in the evening on office. Then she is off to college at 6 pm and returns home around 9.30pm. Her parents are supportive of her efforts as she is earning enough not to depend on anyone for her all her expenditures including pocket money.

B Asha
Final year B.Com
Banumaiah's Evening College

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Karnataka has made tremendous progress in the Cooperative Sector

After Gujarat and Maharastra, Karnataka occupies occupies third position in the co-operative movement in India and has made tremendous progress in the Cooperative Sector. As on 31.3.2010 there are 34,927 societies enrolled with the Registrar of Co-operative Societies of which 30,093 are functioning, 2,710 are defunct and the remaining 2,124 under liquidation.

When it comes to profit, societies registered in Mangalore stands first among Districts which are running profitably namely Kodagu, DK, Udupi, Karwar, Belgaum, Bijapur and Bagalkote. Comparatively, profit margins of societies registered in Mysore is less.

In all there are 8,235 co-operative societies in Mysore, Chamarajanagar, Mandya, Hassan, Chikmagalore, Kodagu, Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts, of which 4,133 are running under profit, 2315 under loss and the remaining 1,787 are average out.

In Mysore a total of 1,881 co-operative societies are registered, of which 904 are under profit, 639 under loss and 338 are average out. According to sources from the Co-operative Society Officers, the reason is existence of about 200 odd-consumer societies which are not performing well and also due to loss in consumer sector / marketing sector and processing sector.

Aaccording to the Department officials, the reason for Mangalore recording the highest profit in this sector is because in Mangalore the member participation is quite high and they are also prompt in making re-payment of loans borrowed from the society, which is not the same in other areas.

Sector wise it is the milk sector that records the highest profit among all the co-operative societies Even in rural areas societies registered under Public Distribution System and Handicrafts are running under loss mainly due to lack of active participation by its members. While credit activities and urban banking in big cities like Bangalore are running under profit while Consumer goods sector, Marketing Sector and Processing sector, including the Mahila Multi-Purpose Society are running under loss.

Co-operative movement in India
The Co-operative Movement in India took its birth in 1904 with the enactment of Co-operative Societies Act 1904. The first Co-operative society to be registered under this Act was in 1905 at Kanaginahal village in Gadag district.
The Mysore Co-operative Societies Act 1959 is the first legislation in our state pertaining to the co-operative societies which came into effect on 25-05-1960.

In peaceful city, one commits suicide everyday

Though a recent survey has placed Bangalore as suicide capital in the country with largest number of people committing suicide every year, our heritage city Mysore is not far behind. Across the city on an average one person commits suicide daily. In the past three years the city has witnessed about 1,273 deaths due to suicide, majority of them by consuming poison and others by hanging.

From 2009 to October 27, 1273 people have committed suicide, of which 302 are men and 890 are women above 18 years, while 52 girls and 29 boys were below 18 years. In 2009 a total of 461 deaths due to unnatural causes were registered, which however in 2010 saw a little dip with 423 cases being registered. This year till October 27, 389 people have taken their lives. These were the figures obtained from 16 police stations coming under the Mysore City jurisdiction, which may rise further if the entire district is considered.

Compared to men, women are more vulnerable, while the number of reported cases of teenagers below 18 years of age committing suicide is also on the rise, said former DCP P Rajendra Prasad, speaking to Express and added, "People are getting more attached to objects like mobile, TV, computers, vehicles instead of building healthy attachments with friends and family members. Also parents need to spend more time with their children."

Difficulties to cope with the real world push the individual towards taking this extreme step. Apart this high academic expectations from a child by their parents, financial losses leading to indebtedness, guilty conscience resulting from strict moral upbringing, incompatibility with spouses or children are some of the most common reasons that drive people towards suicide, he added.

The reason most often cited as the main cause for suicides is lack of proper channels to share innermost pains and sufferings with another like minded individual, says Psychiatrist Vinod Kumar.

Vox populi

Parents should spend more time with kids apart from merely pampering them with comforts, says Grand Mother Vanjamma

Yoga and Meditation help in controlling mind. More people should take up practicing yoga leading to better life. - Yoga Teacher Rakesh

'Parents should develop bonding with children. They should not force children to obtain good marks, instead they should allow children to excel in any field of their choice', Vani, Government School Teacher

Classrooms turns store room at CAVA

The classrooms meant for teaching has become store rooms at centuru-old CAVA (Chamarajendra Academy of Visual Arts) Building on Sayyaji Rao Road. Six classrooms have been kept under lock while all classes for the entire batch of CAVA students from 1st to 3rd year are held in a single classroom.

Though State government has allotted a portion of Chamarajendra Technical Institute (CTI) to CAVA to hold classes, a rift between the officials of the two Department has left the students in the lurch.

CTI officials have locked up six rooms not heeding to any request made by CAVA officials to provide them with much needed classrooms. Left with no other option the staff at CAVA are forced to hold all classes from 1st year to 3rd year in the only room provided to them.

Students who have just enrolled and are in their first year find it very difficult to wait for long hours for their art classes to begin. They have to wait till the final year and second year students to finish their classes. Apart this the general toilet room will also be locked oftenly and students are using rest room which is meant for staff.

Though there are hardly 15 students enrolled in CTI, compared to 268 students at CAVA who need spacious class rooms for working on Computer Graphics and Sculpture classes, they are being side-lined and made to suffer needlessly for no fault of theirs.

Students have already made several requests to the concerned officials in the past to vacate the class rooms that are dumped with waste materials so they can be put to appropriate use. Even their request to open the gallery and hand over its maintenance to them has not evoked any response. The gallery houses several rare artifacts some dating back to the reign of Chamarajawadiyar, the erstwhile Maharaja of Mysore.

Students allege that CTI officials sometimes even cut off power supply to the classrooms disturbing their works. Already as this paper had reported earlier both the ceiling and flooring of this century-old building are falling apart with water logging and seeping at the corners.

This duo have collected books in exchange for old newspapers

Here is a duo who have collected rare books from second hand book sellers in exchange for the old newspapers. Dr MA Jayashree and MA Narasimhan are the cousins who have collected such rare books and manuscripts from their childhood.

Their collection includes several century old books, palm leaf manuscripts and some rare books like Jain Puranas written in Kannada, first Kannada novel – 'Madidunno Maharaya', 'Gandaberunda', the first set of novel series 'Kalaganatha', the first published translations of several Bengali and English works to Kannada like the Bankim Chandra Chatterji's, 'Anand Mutt', a rare handwritten Panchanga and Sanskrit dictionary, 1st volume of Rig Veda published during the regime of Jayachamaja Wodeyar, Kalachu print (letters carved using soap stone) so on.

Majority of the books are in English and Kannada, apart from other languages such as Tamil, Sanskrit, Hindi and Telugu. After they started earning they started buying new books, spending lakhs of rupees. Seeing their interest for books, some of the friends, too have offered them books and they have maintained books very neatly.

Apart from collecting the first publication books, if any book aroused an interest in them they have purchased it. At present they have about 7,000 books and all the books are kept in a separate room in their house which is named, Anantha Research Foundation.

Incidentally, MN Ramanuja Iyengar, the pioneer who first published the Jain Purana manuscripts in Kannada happens to be the grand-father of this cousin duo. With support and encouragement they received from their parents and relatives, they were able to pursue their collection of rare and interesting books. Both born and brought up in a scholarly environment has enriched their curiosity towards books. Speaking to Express they said that, 'One should cultivate the habit of reading to increases imagination and thinking capacity.'