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Of Idiocy and Idiosyncrasy.

In the after-math of what happened on October 7, after the West Indian team broke into an impromptu dance after winning the Twenty20 World Cup finals against Sri Lanka. Didn’t it remind us of a style of dance which recently got viral? Here it is.

I am never the kind of person who keeps herself updated about the recent video which has got viral, or the most trending event/ personality or even an idea. I am always one of those who gets this information last. Either through friends, newspapers or sometimes through bulk SMSes sent by cellular companies, making an offer to facilitate downloading the videos.

That day, while I was in class and doodling in my notebook, I wondered why I should be the last one to know about yet another video which just got viral. The thought wasn’t random, of course, and I kid you not it was indeed triggered by the Psy-Gangnam style video which has now crossed over 400 million views on YouTube.

PSY doing Gangnam style

A video going viral on YouTube isn’t a new phenomenon. One must have heard about Kolaveri Di and Rebecca Black’s Friday. And even Justin Bieber who made a fortune after being picked up from YouTube. But this Psy Gangnam had created a maniacal trend amongst all my hostel- mates. And I wondered why. Back in my college hostel, the song was even played and danced on dandiya night and would be surely performed even on college’s annual day. Yet, I hadn’t known of it until a batch-mate of mine forced me to watch it.

 Unusual yet funny steps, a portly man reiterating Oppa Gangnam Style, and K-pop song lyrics which made no sense to me, were some of the stark characteristics which stood out. I watched only half of it. Not quite intrigued by the video, I did not seem to amuse my friends who already were intensely captivated by Psy’s moves. And suddenly, I was abandoned from the group who did gangnam style on every opportune moment of joy they could fetch.

 It had indeed got viral!

 Today, I accidentally happened to poke Google and tap the keys to write Gangnam Style. To my amazement, I stumbled upon articles written in the Guardian, The Economic Times which talked about Psy-Gangnam style. Adding to this was the video in which Psy (the Korean rapper) teaches Britney Spears the Gangnam style on Ellen DeGeneres Show. That was the end. I could no longer curb myself from not viewing what people were going crazy about.

 So, yes I did watch it.

 It is a K-pop song with a portly Korean rapper singing in comical English. Even if I couldn’t fathom the lyrics (which I later did when I browsed the English translation), the ridiculously catchy element in the video is its Americanisation. Even if one is not familiar with Korean slang, it doesn’t take an Einstein’s mind to understand the backdrop. It is not only a blend of Korean culture but there is a deep undercurrent which runs through Western viewers. And of course, Indians who would more or less find it analogous.

 The lyrics are pointless. Till the end, I find it difficult to understand what the purpose of the song is. It makes sudden references to women who eat in shady places privately only to be able to afford a mocha at a high end café. Now here is what it does. It picks up an idea and drops it in a nanosecond and gradually moves on to the next one. And does what? Nothing at all.

 The only entertainment value I would attribute to the video, are its ridiculously hilarious yet easy-to-catch dance steps. And the amount of times Psy must have reiterated ‘Heey seksy lady’ and ‘Oppa Gangnam style’ which made me laugh uproariously.

 I kid you not, but you’ll soon begin to find memes shared on Facebook and Twitter on Gangnam style. It may further have you see a flash mob or two, in Gangnam style. Did I forget to mention Gangnam style tees which would be sold on every street in Bombay? And you never know, it may emerge as a contemporary dance style as well.

After all, it is the world of idiocy and idiosyncrasy.

Niharika Pandit


History Lesson

I was never a science or mathematics person. All near and dear ones would unanimously agree to this.
I was more on the history and politics side of education. I could somehow always understand and make sense of various things which happened in history and what were the results of those repercussions. It is very pulsating like every new thing you get to know about is a part of the larger puzzle. The new pieces of information to me look like the first time as kid I saw candy floss, pink, sweet, bubble like and very inviting.
Truth being told we live in a society which has completes belief in science and accounts. It really doesn’t care about the candy floss; what we are taught is about how the mechanics of the candy floss machine works and how much will it cost. You have uncle and aunts and family friends who ask you, “Why would you take arts in your high school board examination? You can do a BA in college, it is the same thing right?” At that very moment you’re counting backwards in your head from one to ten and in some cases from hundred to one. In the larger picture personally I am not very fond of the education system but then well that’s how our society believes we will remain sane.
We have brilliant examples of how history is created which we in general seem to forget. It is in those moments, which get together to define or create the moment of the era, which defines a new beginning and an end to the previous one. It is a circle which goes around. This is what should be explained to the critics of history. One of the examples would be of the trio famously known as Lal, Bal and Pal i.e Lala Lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Bipin Chandra Pal, they were the propagators of the radical approach towards India’s freedom. In 1905 they led the Swadeshi movement and during the Bengal partition mobilized Indians and carried demonstration strikes to oppose the British government’s decision.
In the year 1881 the history of Mumbai changed the moment the Marathi weekly ‘Kesari’ came into print. Mumbai for the first time saw what a single man could do. Mumbai started celebrating ‘samuhik ganapati visarjan’ a tradition followed till date.
Bal Gangadhar Tilak was the editor of ‘Maratha’ while Agarkar, his very close friend was the editor of The Kesari. With due course of time the difference in their ideologies grew and Agarkar quit the editor’s job from Kesari. Tilak’s main motive behind starting Kesari and Maratha was to provide information to readers as well as them educate them. He wanted to use his paper make the Indians self reliant and to be aware about their rights. Tilak firmly believed in the institution of education and thought of it as a tool to drive off the British government. Later on one of the most important contributions made by these papers was create a unity among the Indian readers during the Swadeshi Movement. In Tikal’s words he explained about the nature of ‘Kesari’ as – “‘Kesari will fearlessly and impartially discuss all problems. The increasing mentality of appeasing the British is not in the interest of this country. The articles published in ‘Kesari’ will be apt for its name ‘Kesari (lion)’ ”.
The paper had a Sanskrit verse printed near the editorial, the translation of the verse meant a warning to an intoxicated elephant to not enter the forest as the lion in the forest was used to destroying huge rocks thinking of them as elephants. The meaning of the Marathi word Kesari is ‘a lion’ and the addressed and warned the intoxicated elephant not to go in the forest, for there was a lion used to tearing the huge rocks mistaking them for elephants.
This would not have been possible if Tilak through his newspaper had not created a belief in his readers. His personality and ideology came across in his papers. As an editor he believed that his paper was meant for the greater good of the society and there would be no compromise on this ideal. . He used it as a platform to discuss various issues like government policies, politics, education and social issues Time and time again he had to go through various difficulties for pursuing ‘fearless journalism’.
Tilak and Agarkar were one of the first journalists against whom and deformation case was filed by Shri Barwe. This case is known as the ‘Kolhapur Kesari Episode’. Shri Barwe was the manager of the Diwaan of Kolhapur. An article published in the Kesari alleged that the Maharaja was being conspired against and his being stated as ‘mad’ was a conspiracy on the British government behalf. Tilak and Agarkar lost the case and were given a sentence of 4 months. It was only after the sentence that Tilak felt that he should become active in politics.
He put forth rational thoughts in his editorials. In the 1897 famine, he wrote in his articles about the ‘Famine Relief Code’ which forced the British government to take action and help the people. Tilak also appealed the masses to stand up for their rights. He also criticised intellectuals like Namdhar Gokhale who believed in following the British charter as ground rule for the anti government movements. Tilak objected by saying that since the government was foreign there was no need to follow their charter; India would need its own charter.
After the assassination of Mr. Rand in 1897, the government in order to bring the culprits into light became atrocious. The police authorities used ruthless repression in order to strike terror in the hearts of the people. Young men were rounded up and put in prison without notice. There were no trials and rights were suspended. Tilak agreed that the culprits should be brought to the court in his articles but he also mentioned on how the government had been insensitive to the people during the trying times of the plague. In his articles, he wrote fearlessly that the government had itself called for this sort of unrest. He further mentioned that though he did not support the violence but these young men are not left with any choice, he was quoted ‘men would be forced to pick up arms’. Rationality was the core frame of Tilak’s ideas and belief.
Tilak in his defense argued in the Court for 21 hours against the charges of treason filed against him. He clarified that the newspapers have a right to form public opinion and it is the duty of a newspaper to bring to the notice of the Government the nature of powers created in the political life of a country. The speech given by Tilak in the High Court was not an intellectual exercise to protect self but it showed his extra-ordinary qualities like his rationality in thinking, deep study of law, his love for the nation and his readiness to go through any punishment for his principles. All those who heard him pleading his case, experienced his nobility. As the judges declared him ‘guilty’, Judge Davar asked Tilak whether he wanted to say something. Tilak was quoted , “I am not an offender or guilty let the jury decide anything. There is a supreme power than this Court which controls worldly matters. It could be God’s wish that I get punishment so as to boost the mission that I have undertaken.”
Tilak as an editor was an inspiring figure to all those who worked under him and even to those who got influenced by his work. He became a public figure and took pride in the Indian culture. He wanted people to have aspirations and make the government aware of its short comings. He was a strong supporter of the freedom of press and in its power to influence and motivate people to believe for their own betterment. His editorials revolved around social awakening.
His was the generation which demanded to be heard in their country by their people. The moment ‘kesari’ came to print to every moment of his struggle, he kept creating history and this is the reason why the news media/print media is still strong in India because people did connect to the papers they read. Tilak believed in giving candy floss and not in how much money or how it was going to be made.



An image of countless devotees surrounding an Idol of Lord Ganesha before immersion in Mumbai, Maharshtra


It is that time of the year, when devotees across the country in general and those living in the state of Maharashtra in particular, celebrate the most awaited festival, the Ganesha Chaturthi. Surrounded by much fanfare, the creative aspect of the human mind comes to the fore as more and more people come up with unprecedented ideas every year. Right from spreading awareness about the use of eco-friendly idols and the various drives to clean up the beaches during immersion, to the most innovative ways of making idols, the year 2012 has witnessed many novel instances worth glancing at. Let us take a look at what was so special about the Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations, this year.

The most striking feature, post idol immersion, was the level by which the Plaster of Paris (PoP) litter has come down this year. The sight of broken pieces of PoP has always been usual at various beaches in Mumbai. But with aggressive campaigns supporting the use of eco-friendly idols, this year’s celebration has led to less litter in the city. This year, the Maharashtra Pollution Control Board (MPCB) has successfully sold as many as fifty thousand eco-friendly idols to the people. In an interview with DNA (Daily News and Analysis), Mumbai, the member secretary of MPCM talked about how they have been making rigorous efforts to spread awareness about the harmful effects of using other forms of idols. He says, “Idols made of PoP take months to dissolve in waterleading to water pollution and litter in the beaches. Though there are strict laws with respect to water pollution, certain limitations come into play during grand festivals such as these. The only way to get the message across is via campaigns.”

Eco-friendly Ganesha Idols sold by Maharshtra Pollution Control Board

“This year we sold fifty thousand eco-friendly idols from all the 45 distribution outlets spread across Pune, Kolhapur, Nagpur, Nashik, Aurangabad and the rest of the state,” he further adds.

Celebrities and students have also been contributing immensely to this cause. Actress Kajol encouraged Mumbaikars to buy eco-friendly Ganapati idols this year. Actress Rani Mukherjee also showed enthusiasm by being a part of the annual cultural festival called Kaleidoscope conducted by Sophia College for Women, Mumbai. She talked to the students about the importance of resorting to eco-friendly idols. Actress Kareena Kapoor also showed her support in preserving the environment by participating in DNA’s eco-friendly Ganesha initiative.

Actress Kajol talking to Mumbaikars about eco-friendly Ganpati idols in Mumbai

With the drive and campaigns in full swing, the students of RD National College set an example before the city by volunteering to clean up the debris in Juhu beach during and after the idol immersion. A group comprising seven students belonging to BMM (Bachelor of Mass Media), gathered a huge crowd of students who were willing to clean up the mess. In collaboration with BMC (Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation), the students collected garbage in over 100 bags. Such initiatives by students not only show the level of awareness among but also the dedication and sincerity with which they do their bit in keeping the city clean.

Apart from the eco-friendly drive, another striking feature of this year’s Ganesha Chaturthi celebration was Mr. Mohan Kumar Dodecha’s unique tribute to the Lord. The 66-year-old made a Ganpati Rangoli from Sabudana (Sogo) at Mulund, making it both to the Limca Book of Records and the Guiness Book of Records. The Rangoli was designed using 60 kg of Sabudana coloured in different shades.

An image of Mohan Kumar Dodecha making rangoli out of Sabudana at Mulund in Mumbai

Yet another instance of Innovative Ganesha idols was found at Hypercity stores in Mumbai. A strikingly vibrant idol of artifial Cadbury Gems Ganesha was set up at all the hypercity stores in the city. The idols that stood five feet tall were made using artificially created gemsof six different colours. The collection was exclusive and affordable.

An Idol of Lord Ganesha at HyperCITY made of artificially created Cadbury Gems

As can be seen, the Ganesha Chaturthi Celebrations are no more the same as they used to be a decade ago, as more and more people have decided to take a turn for the good. The celebrations are bettering themselves not only in terms of grandeur and innovation but level of responsibility as well.




ETAWAH: The Land of Talents

Etawah, my native place, is a city in the state Uttar Pradesh near Yamuna River. It is a part of a Kanpur Division. Also Etawah is a place of sangam between Yamuna River and Chambal River.  If we go in the history of the city, it was an important center for the Revolt of 1857.


Etawah – Constituency map Uttar Pradesh

Chambal ki Gattis are close to Etawah city, hence it is a notorious city even today. But today I, Anusha Pathak, want all of you to know that my native in not that bad as everyone thinks. Etawah is a land of talents too and here I am presenting few amazing talents of Etawah people.

Ustad Imdad Khan

1.      Ustad Imdad Khan (1848–1920), Instrumental Classical Musician: Even though his father Ustad Sahabdab Khan was the founder of Etawah Gharana, which comes from the most ancient school of music, the Gwalior Gharana, Ustad Imdad Khan was the one who developed the instruments, and created an innovative instrumental style that became characteristic of the Etawah gharana. The gharana is also called as Imdadkhani Gharana.

 Ustad Imdad Khan was born in Agra, but later shifted to Etawah. He was taught by his father Ustad Sahabdab Khan and the legendary beenkar Bande Ali Khan. He had served to kings of Mysore and Indore. He also played for Queen Victoria in Delhi.

In the 19th century, Senia style was dominating in the instrumental classical music of Northern India. But, Ustad Imdad Khan introduced the element of Khayal gayaki into the alap of the first time. All gayaki ornamentations were implemented and systematically developed into the techniques for this newly developed style for playing sitar.

Ustad Imdad Khan was the first Sitar player to come out with a recording.

Devesh Chauhan

2.      Devesh Singh Chauhan (1980), Hockey Player of India: Devesh Chauhan has born on November 12, 1980 in Etawah. He is a Hockey goalkeeper from India. In early 2000, Devesh Chauhan made his international debut for the Men’s National Team. He represented India twice at the Olympics in 2000 (Sydney Australia) and in 2004 (Athens, Greece) where India finished in seventh place on both the occasions.

 In the year 2001, Champions Challenge for Men was the inaugural tournament of Champions Challenge which held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Devesh Chauhan was the goal keeper of Indian Hockey team at that time. India defeated South Africa by 2-1 in the final to win the competition.


Gopaldas Saxena ‘Neeraj’

3.      Gopaldas Saxena ‘Neeraj’ (1924), Poet and Song Writer: E bhai zara dekh ke chalo song from Mera Naam Joker, would always remind you of Raj Kapoor and Manna Day. But Gopaldas Saxena ‘Neeraj’ (or popularly known as Neeraj as it is his pen name) was the one who wrote the song. Not only this but many songs like O meri Sharmili from Sharmili, Phulon ke rang se, dil ki kalam se from Prem Pujari, both sung by Shri Kishore Kumar. Rangeela re from Prem Pujari sung by Lata Mangeshkarji, Mera man tera pyasaa from Gambler sung by Mohammed Rafi and many more.

 ‘Neeraj’ji is among the best known poets and authors in Hindi literature. He is also famous poet of Hindi Kavi Sammelan. He has many collections i.e., “Neeraj ki Paati”, “Baadlon se Salaaam Leta Hoon”, “Geet jo Gaye Nahi” etc.

He was born on January 4, 1924 in the small village Ekdil of Etawah. His style is easy to understand but is compared with high quality Hindi literature. Besides writing he was the Professor of Hindi Literature in Aligarh.

In the year 2007, he was awarded Padma Bhushan. Recently in the March of this year 2012, he recited some of his works at Annual Inter-College Cultural festival, Spoculit of Dr. Ram Manohar Lohiya National Law University, Lucknow. Nowadays he works as the Chancellor of Mangalayatan University, Aligarh.

Mulayam Singh Yadav

4.      Mulayam Singh Yadav (1939), Ex-Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh: Mulayan Singh Yadav is an Indian politician, head of Samajwadi Party (SP) from Uttar Pradesh. He was born on November 22, 1939 in the village Saifai of Etawah. He did his education from different colleges of Uttar Pradesh like K. K College, Etawah, A. K. College, Shikohabad and B. R. College, Agra University.

 He was the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh thrice from 1989-1991, 1993-1995 and 2003-2007. He also served as Minister of Defence (1996-1998) in the United Front government.  His supporters call him Netajee and Dhartiputra. Mulayam Singh is a dedicated follower of Indian socialist leaders like Raj Narain and Ram Manohar Lohia.

Now his son Akhilesh Yadav (1973), who was also born in Saifai village, is Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. He took his primary education from Saint Mary School, Etawah.


K. Asif

5.      K. Asif (1922-1971), Film Director: Asif Karim was born on June 14, 1922 in Etawah. He was a film director, film producer and screenwriter. He is most famous for his work for the epic Hindi movie Mughal-e-Azam (1960).

Asif Karim went to Bombay to his brother-in-law Nazir Ahmed Khan and later took the name K. Asif. His directorial debut was Phool (1945), with a star cast of Prithviraj Kapoor, Durga Khote and Suraiya, which did well on box-office. Later he came up with the Mughal-e-Azam in 1960 with Dilip Kumar and Madhubala, which bagged him the status of legend despite his very few work.

The other film he made was Hulchul in 1951. While shooting on another film Love and God, K. Asif died on March 9, 1971 at the age of 48.

Along with all these eminent personalities and specialties of Etawah, former Indian President, late Dr. Zakir Hussain (February 8, 1897) pursued his school education in H.M.S Islamia Inter College, Etawah which is an epitome of unity and good relations between Hindus and Muslims.

So from all this we can see that Etawah, my native place, a small city of Uttar Pradesh, India, has so much of talent within itself. Etawah has given many prominent personalities to India in different fields like Music, Sports, Literature, Politics, and Films etc.

Hence, I can say even if it is notorious place, thanks to Chambal ke Daakus, it has given me many more reasons to say that I am proud of my native place. I am proud of Etawah.

Anusha Pathak,

TYBMM Journalism,

Sophia College.


Get ready to salivate extensively for the next five minutes with these mind-numbing and mouth-watering Kashmiri dishes…

Being a Kashmiri pandit myself, there are a lot of myths and misunderstandings (that is, leaving aside the different pronunciations that people across the world come up with) regarding the food that is associated with Kashmiri cuisine and hence came up with this week’s blog idea to introduce some of the most famous and mouth-watering dishes from Kashmir to one and all. Kashmiri food is known to be very rich in spices and is a favourite among those who love spicy food. Some of the below mentioned dishes are a few of tourists’ as well as my favourites as well! These dishes are more popular or associated with the Kashmiri pandit cuisine, rather than with the Kashmiri Muslims.
As a matter of fact, most of the following dishes are always made in Kashmiri marriages or special occasions like Kashur birthdays (i.e. Kashmiri birthdays: Yes, Kashmiris have their own Kashmiri calendar according to which a person’s birthday falls on a particular date and that is taken and celebrated to be his/her birthday. The interesting point here is that earlier till 20-30 odd years back, some of the Kashmiris didn’t even know their real birth dates because their Kashmiri birth dates used to fall on different dates each year!),and occasions like ashthami etc. Here a few of the famous Kashmiri dishes that are a must have on your food menu, if anyone ever plans a trip to the place:

  • Rogan Josh: Rogan joshis undoubtedly

    rogan josh

    the most famous and loved dish ever from
    the Kashmiri cuisine, by both the Kashmiris
    as well as the non-Kashmiris who have tasted the dish. Rogan josh is nothing but lamb cooked in hot, spicy red gravy. But beware! It is bound to be very spicy and is known to be a heavenly delight for spicy non-vegetarian lovers!

  • Yakhni: Yakhniis what

    lamb yakhni

    we call lamb cooked in curd based gravy. It’s not spicy but is
    definitely a must have
    dish for those who visit Kashmir or want to experience Kashmiri food cuisine as this dish is an integral part of the food culture in Kashmir.

    Matschgand- minced meatballs

  • Matschgand:  Matschgand are hand-made minced meatballs, which is later cooked in spicy red gravy, which will seduce your taste buds into having more and more of them and you won’t be even guilty of developing a bad stomachache because of over-eating this spicy dish.

    meatballs in yogurt gravy

  • Goshtaba: A delicacy – mutton minced with various Kashmiri spices, shaped into balls and
    cooked in a very flavourful yogurt gravy- a creamy sauce.

    modur pulao

  • Modur Pulao: Modur’ means sweet.
    Modur pulao is nothing but sweet
    pulao which is rice prepared with
    cinnamon, a little saffron, milk, ghee,
    sugar, cashew nuts, almonds, green
    cardamom and cloves to name a few.
    Sweet Pulao is said to be usually served as a dessert but there is no such tradition in most of the Kashmiri families that I have seen around me, including my own. Definitely not one of my favourites.

    lyodur chaman

  • Lyodur Tschaman:
    Lyodur means yellow (turmeric) and tschaman  means cottage cheese or simply paneer. This dish is simply Cottage Cheese cooked in creamy turmeric based gravy. It is a top favourite amongst vegetarian Kashmiris and is very often cooked on a day to day basis.

    dum aloo

  • Dum Oluv or aloo:
    Everyone is familiar with this dish and might have tasted it as well. Dum oluv or aloo is a dish of whole potatoes cooked in spicy red gravy which if cooked properly in the typical Kashmiri way, can bring various flavours to your mouth and tears of sheer pleasure in your eyes.
  • Muj Gaad:

    muj-gaad (radish and fish)

    ‘Muj gaad’ is one among the most favorite dishes of Kashmiri pandits. This dish basically comprises of fish which is deep fried first and then added to red spicy gravy along with radish and is then topped with grinded ajwain in the end. It is a dish to kill and die for!


  • Nadir-Waangan:This dish comprises of lotus stems with brinjal and can be cooked in two different ways- one is cooked in red spicy gravy and the other with a yogurt base curry/gravy.
  • Nadir-haak/Gogji/Monji:This is a dish favourite among the locals wherein lotus stems are cooked with spinach/saag or radish which somehow turns out to be finger-licking  good.


  • Haak-monji: This is the most commonly
    made dish you will find in any Kashmiri
    household. This dish consists of spinach/saag
    along with radish (preferably) and is made
    almost every other day in any Kashmiri household. It is very good for eyes and even though it looks a little bland, but it actually is unbelievably tasty.

    gogji razma

  • Raazma-Gogji:This dish is primarily a raazma (kidney beans) dish but along with turnip pieces in it. The turnip gives a different Kashmiri twist to the dish altogether, which makes it different than the way raazma is usually made.

    chok wangun

  • Chouck Waangan: Chouck waangan means sour brinjals. It is a dish in which brinjals are cut length-wise, fried and then mixed with tamarind water and other spices. It is an extremely chapatti dish which is bound to let out a ‘click’ sound from your mouth.

And of course, the most famous of all, the Kashmiri tea, also known as ‘kehwa’ (originally pronounced as ‘keh-wa’, not ‘ka-wa’) is a must try drink for all. It is a type of tea which is boiled and cardamom, almonds and sugar are added to it. It is said to have medicinal properties as well. ‘Kehwa’ is also given to people suffering with a cold or sore throat as it relieves the pain and irritability of the ailment.


Over 20 varieties of Kehwa
are prepared in different
households. Some people
also put milk in kehwa (half
milk + half kehwa). This
chai is also known as
Mughal Chai” by some
Kashmiri Pandits from the
smaller villages of Kashmir.

I have grown up eating all these fabulous, mouthwatering, and spicy and chapatti dishes and hands down, Kashmiri cuisine continues to be my personal favourite ever tasted.

–Sakshi Raina

PATOIEANCHEM FEAST CELEBRATION ( a feast celebrated by Goans along with Independence day)


students encouraged to hold the Indian flag

Independence Day – a day on which every Indian is happy to be a part of India and patriotic sentiments just rise up among citizens belonging to every age group, caste, religion, community etc. Each and every corner of India ad especially villages of Goa are is seen with Tri coloured painted walls, the Indian Flag is hoisted in every building compound or terrace. It’s on Independence day ad Republic days that each person starts singing patriotic songs .Otherwise hardly does anyone wish to sing any of those.

Most of the families of Nesai Village in Margao City of Goa make sure that each of them are dressed up in a full white attire or at least wear an attire that matches the colour of our national flag. People around purchased a flag Rs.5 each and encourage their children to hold it and be all ready sing the National Anthem. A 4 year old kid was seen wearing the army’s uniform and singing the national anthem the whole day. Patriotic songs were played throughout the day and this tape recorder was the alarm for all the surrounding residents to wake up and get set for the Independence Celebration.

The catholic community on the other hand celebrated another kind of festival known as the ‘Patoieanchem Fest’ or ‘Assumption of Mary’ along with Independence Day. It’s mandatory that the catholic community needs to attend a spiritual session called ‘Mass’ in which their religious priest explains the meaning of the festival as well as its importance and relationship with regards to India’s Independence. The Catholic community believes that Mother Mary was taken up into heaven and declared the Mother of the World. This can be interpreted into Mother Mary being given a dignified identity. This has a close symbolism with Independence as India too gained its dignified status after several years of slavery and struggle for freedom.

Among the Catholics, the Goans and Manglorians celebrate it more auspiciously by making sweet known as ‘Pathoiee’ which is prepared using a leaf, rice flour, dal and jiggery. This sweet dish is actually a symbol of respect to Mary as she had visited her cousin Elizabeth during the month of harvest. That’s why it is known as ‘Pathoieeche fest’

To make this feast much more meaningful the people around got together, sang religious songs, hoisted our National Flag and sang the National Anthem.

People even distributed the sweet (Pathoiee) among neighbours and this brought up a sense of brotherhood and peace relationship among different religious communities. This also works as a symbolism of Independence Day significance.

the sweet ‘pathoyee’ – this is made on pathoeiyeeche fest ‘ or ‘ASSumption of Mother Mary’s feast’

The day ended up by sliding down the National Flag by 5 pm and people started watching the different ways of celebration on television.

In short, even though Pathoeeyeeche fest and assumption of Mother Mary feast is a catholic community feast but still it can be easily symbolised with our nation’s Independence Day celebration- CELEBRATION OF FREEDOM AND UNITY IN DIVERSITY.