Thursday, March 26, 2009

Video: Test Driving Tata Nano

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Tata Nano, the world's cheapest car

NANO, the world's cheapest car is to hit India's streets in July 2009. The car will retail for just over $2,000 and can be yours, if you live in India and are very lucky, by July, Tata Motors said Monday.

The car, aptly called the people's car was to be on the roads just for Indian Rs.100,000 as planned by Ratan Tata. But the manufacturing schedule of the car was delayed due to the problems Tata Motors' Nano Car Plant in West Bengal faced in 2008, because of which the plant had to be closed down and relocated outside West Bengal. Though tagged at Rs.100,000, it could cost Rs.130,000 for the standard version when it is on the road. Read the initial hiccups NANO faced because of the problems in its plant.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Gurovayoor temple entrance

Gurovayoor temple entrance

Announcing General Elections in India - tusker

The author of this photo ads: Elections to the 'Lok Sabha' the lower house of Indian Parliament has been announced! The 15th general elections are scheduled to be conducted between 16th April to 13th May 2009!

(Photo taken at Guruvayoor, waiting for a while to snap this trumpeting posture! Thank you tusker!!)

Guruvayur, also spelt as Guruvayoor, is a busy temple town in Thrissur district of Kerala, India, 25 km to the northwest of Thrissur city. It is a major pilgrimage town in India.

Guruvayur is famous for the many centuries old Guruvayoor temple, one of the most important temples in Kerala. The temple's deity is Lord Guruvayurappan (Lord Krishna in the form of a child).

A major tourist attraction is the elephant sanctuary, Punnathur kotta, near the temple where jumbos (tuskers) are trained for temple processions. The sanctuary has more than 60 elephants, given as an offering to God by the devotees of Lord Guruvayurappan.

Getting there - buses ply every few minutes from Thrissur city. Buses also operate from Ernakulam, North Paravur, Kottayam, Pathanamthitta, Pamba/ Sabarimala, Palakkad, Kozhikode, Kodungallur and Trivandrum (Thiruvananthapuram). Passenger trains operate from the station to Thrissur and Kochi, as well as an overnight express train to Trivandrum and further to Chennai. Cochin International Airport, the nearest airport, is some 80 km from Guruvayur. The other International Airport in Kerala is the Trivandrum Airport.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Communist Party of India (Marxist) General Secretary Prakash Karat speaks during the launch of the Third Front

IND12112A, originally uploaded by electionlivemint.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) - CPI (M) or CPM - General Secretary Prakash Karat speaks during the launch of the Third Front, ahead of Lok Sabha polls, in Dobbespet, about 60 KM away from Bangalore on Thursday.

If the third front becomes successful in putting up candidates in most of the constituencies, it can turn the fortunes of most of the candidates of the current ruling front lead by Congress and the opposition front lead by BJP, even if the third front cannot pullout a majority of its own. The result will be post-poll realignments and a new coalition of unlikely partners and possibly a Prime Minister the least expected by the political pundits in India.
PTI Photo by Shailendra Bhojak

Manmohan Singh meets Somnath Chatterjee

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh meets Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee at the latter's official residence in New Delhi on Thursday.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Prediction for General Elections 2009 by Arun Nehru

Arun Nehru's prediction for General Elections 2009 published by Deccan Chronicle, Hyderabad, India.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Holi celebrations across India

Holi, the festival of colors, is a popular spring festival observed in India, Nepal, some of the South East Asian countries, Suriname, Guyana, Trinidad, the UK and many other parts of the world. During the celebrations people apply colors on each other, light bonfires, distribute sweets and other delicacies, perform prayers, and they sing, dance, dine and make Holi an enjoyable celebration.

Holi is celebrated on the full moon day in the month of Phalugna (Falguna or Phalgun Purnima), in the late February or early March. It is a major festival in most of north India, while in other parts Holi is celebrated with slight variations.

As legends say, the bonfires are lit to celebrate the miraculous escape of young Prahlad, the son of the demon king Hiranyakashipu, who had ordered his sister Holika to carry Prahlad into the fire and burn him. But Holika was burnt and Prahlad, a devotee of Lord Vishnu was safe due to his devotion.

Another legend is regarding Kamadeva (Kama), the god of love. He shot his arrow of love and lust at Lord Shiva to help Parvati to marry Shiva. But then Shiva opened his third eye, the power of which burned Kama to ashes. But for the sake of Kama's wife Rati (passion), Shiva restored him as a mental image, representing true emotional and mental state of love rather than physical lust.

In Vrindavan and Mathura, where Lord Krishna grew up, the festival is celebrated for 16 days to mark the divine love of Radha for Krishna. Lord Krishna is believed to have popularized the festival by playing pranks on the neighborhood girls. Legend says, Krishna complained to his mother about his dark color and his consort Radha's fair color, when Krishna's mother applied color on Radha's face, and that is the basis for applying color on the occasion of Holi. The Holi is in spring, the celebrated season of love.

In Mathura, the birth place of Lord Krishna, this day is celebrated with special prayers. All over the Braj region and its nearby places like Hathras, Aligarh, Agra Holi is celebrated in more or less same way as in Mathura, Vrindavan and Barsana.

Bengalis celebrate Holi as Dol Yatra or the swing festival where the idols of Krishna and Radha are placed on swings and women sing devotional songs, throw colors and perform dances as devotees take turns to swing the idols.

In Orissa people celebrate Holi in a similar manner but the idols of Lord Jagannath, the deity of the Jagannath Temple of Puri, replace the idols of Krishna and Radha.

Holi is celebrated with great fanfare in Gujarat with colors, singing and dancing. In Maharashtra, Holi is mainly associated with the burning of Holika and the fun of playing with colors.

In Manipur, in northeastern India, Holi is celebrated for six days. Introduced in the eighteenth century with Vaishnavism, it soon merged with the centuries old festival of Yaosang.

Civilians as well as the Indian security forces celebrate Holi in Jammu & Kashmir. Holi, the festival to mark the harvesting of the summer crop, is celebrated by the throwing of colored water and powder and singing and dancing.

In south India Holi is an outcome of the influence of the media, movies, marketing and migration. There are lots of people from north India living in different parts of southern Indian states like Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka and they celebrate Holi and the locals too join them in the celebrations.

The spring season may cause viral fever, cold, etc. due to climate changes. So applying natural colors has a medicinal significance. The colors used for Holi celebrations are traditionally made from medicinal plants like Neem, Kumkum, Haldi, Bilva and other medicinal herbs. And such colors can cure seasonal ailments. But commercialization of the celebration brought in artificial colors, which can contain toxic chemicals, and these are to be avoided.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Sunday, March 8, 2009

BJP Prime Ministerial candidate L K Advani

ADWANI, originally uploaded by joshi231957.

BJP Prime Ministerial candidate L K Advani speaks during the release of a book on Jan Sangh founder Shyama Prasad Mukherjee on the occasion of his death anniversary, in New Delhi on Monday (PTI photo by Vijay Kumar Joshi, 13 Dec 2008).

Deputy CM of Haryana with Fiza

Deputy CM of Haryana Chander Mohan, now Chand Mohammed, with his newly wed wife Anuradha Bali, now Fiza, during a press conference in New Delhi on Tuesday - photo by Vijay Kumar Joshi (17 Dec 2008).

Jaya Bachchan at Parliament House

Actor-turned-politician and Samajwadi Party MP Jaya Bachchan gestures during an interaction with media outside Parliament House in New Delhi - photo by Vijay Kumar Joshi (18 Dec 2008).

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh with Sonia Gandhi

Manmohan Singh with Sonia Gandhi
SONIA, originally uploaded by joshi231957.

Mobile marketing and shortcodes for your campaigns

Have you ever wondered why most of the successful business giants use shortcodes for their promotional campaigns, surveys, television voting, product promotions and other campaigns? The reason is they are the most cost-effective and brings back instant positive response from most of the cellphone users. President Obama used shortcodes extensively during his presidential campaign, and you are well aware of how it is used by TV shows like American Idol. Probably, you too wanted to know how to get your own 5-digit number for text message promotions. If so, Cellit Mobile Marketing can help you setup your very own 5-digit phone number! No need to tell you that it is highly useful for text marketing. It also makes tracking the effectiveness of your campaigns!

After the Internet explosion, the next big revolution in the field of communication technology is in the case of mobile phones. Mobile phones, also known as cellular phones or simply cell phones, are not just phones but multifunction devices that cater to a host of services including most of the things available on Internet and TV. The reason why they are so popular is that they are quite easy to carry with you wherever you go, user-friendly, affordable and hassle-free. They are the in-things with the tech-savvy new generation of people as well as the older generation. With the unprecedented phenomenal growth in the cell phone connections, cell phones have caught the attention of the marketing and advertising experts too. There will be hardly any company, organization or individual who does not use mobile marketing or SMS marketing now.

The financial melt down has hit most companies and with that many businesses are now turning to SMS marketing because it is the cheapest. Plus, the customer response is instant. Besides, SMS is supported by most cell phones and you can easily reach millions of subscribers instantaneously.

When you turn to SMS solutions for your marketing campaigns, the most important thing is that you choose a company that is technologically superior and a market leader. One such company is Cellit Mobile Marketing that has served efficiently about 60% of all Broadway shows and clients like HSBC, Hearst Corporation, etc. They have reliable plans and services for small businesses and large companies, utilizing the power of mobile marketing via text messaging, WAP and voice with the help of their simple-to-use web tools.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Elections: Goa, India

Goa, India - Elections, originally uploaded by Joel's Goa Pics.

Dayanand Mandrekar, the winning BJP candidate of the Siolim constituency in Goa, being transported home on a motorcade by his supporters in Assembly elections in June 2007 in which the Congress party won the Goa Assembly elections with a wafer-thin majority.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Reverse mortgage as a financial choice for senior homeowners

The current financial meltdown has affected most people very badly, but senior homeowners living on fixed incomes like pensions, social security, annuities, etc. are the worst hit. Most of them have inadequate retirement funding and costs of healthcare, fuel, home maintenance and similar monthly recurring expenses have risen. Most seniors have mortgages to pay off and may have credit card dues. While these costs increase month after month, their incomes do not. This situation has compelled many to sell their homes, or for taking more drastic steps that bring in more problems than solving problems.

In such a situation a useful financial tool is a reverse mortgage that helps senior homeowners not only to save their homes from being sold of but also generate extra funds to pay off the existing dues and enjoy the usual monthly incomes they used to have. But the problem is they do not have qualified financial planners for guidance. The website of Reverse Mortgage Information, an independent site, not affiliated to lenders, is helpful. They have free information online to guide you through reverse mortgage plans.

Before you jump on a decision find out if reverse mortgages are right for you. Certainly, they are not advisable for everyone. They are very complex and you need to educate yourself about they can help you. You can get lots of guidance from many sources, but the best is the free tutorial guide that you can download or print a hard copy from this site.

Apart from info on reverse mortgage plans, they also advise what kind of Medicare insurance suits you, including medicare supplemental insurance. In short, there is no monthly payment to receive coverage under Medicare Part A that helps pay for inpatient medical care, once you turn 65. Enrollment is automatic if you are registered with the Social Security Administration. Medicare Part B, Part C and Part D can attract an additional monthly premium. Complete information about Medicare plans that are available for free and that attract a monthly premium is available in their site.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Indian elections, the biggest democratic exercise on planet earth

This April-May the world is going to witness the biggest democratic exercise on planet earth, with India going to the polls to elect the ruling party or coalition of parties to govern the country for the next five years. This election is going to be especially important because a major chunk of voters are of what we call Generation Next, say, in the age group of 18 to 35 years. And interestingly most of them are first-time voters.

Apart from the ruling coalition of the Congress lead by Sonia Gandhi and the opposition coalition lead by BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) lead by their leader and the Prime Ministerial candidate L K Advani, a third front, mainly of the leftist parties, CPM - Communist Party of India (Marxist) - and other communist or socialist parties and powerful regional parties like Telugu Desam are also in the fray.

The third front may not be able to pullout a win by itself, but they are definitely going to decide who is going to rule India for the next five years. These parties used to be in one or the other of the main coalitions in the past and the swing of their votes usually decided the next ruling coalition, just because in the last few elections no single party could win a majority of its own.

Most of the third front parties were in the outgoing coalition of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Now, if they fight against their current allies the left parties and their allies in the coalition are definitely going to drastically reduce the winning margins and the number of seats won by the Congress lead coalition. The BJP may not have to worry much because the leftists were always against them. BJP has so many other factors to tackle if its coalition has to win.

All the major players are campaigning this time in the high-tech path, rather tech-savvy with the aggressive use of the Internet and social networking sites. For instance, Sonia Gandhi’s YouTube video of the kisan rally saw thousands of hits on the first day. BJP’s PM candidate L K Advani’s website ( features his blog and the Advani Campus Program. BJP wants to do some Obamagic by hiring Kevin Bertram, the man behind Obama’s poll campaign. Bertram was in India recently and BJP wants to do a cellphone campaign similar to the one that lead Obama to victory, informed sources report.

Any way, young India, the major chunk of the electorate, will have a final say. There is very much the possibility of a hung parliament and post-poll re-alliances and regroupings of political parties and even elected members of parliament switching sides.