Get subscribed to our newsletter
Get interesting updates to your email inbox.
If you are looking to welcome the festive season with a dash of reading, six upcoming Indian authors could be interesting additions to your bookshelf.
‘The King of the Sea’ by Nandam Gautam
A metaphysical novel paired with two companion music albums, Nandan Gautam’s ‘The King of the Sea’ transports you into a new dimension, where reality lies suspended between the past and the future. The memoir and the thrilling sea epic, weave in and out, diving into the deepest layers of the subconscious with startling honesty and gut-wrenching emotionality, offering a wealth of insights into personal growth, self-revelation, and ultimately, love. Both albums ‘The King of the Sea’ and ‘The Divine Flaw’ are available to the reader via an exclusive web link provided in the book. The music features award-winning musicians, who helped to make this a uniquely immersive and expansive experience.
‘Apophis’ by Raj Anand
Raj Anand’s ‘Apophis: Into The Folds of Darkness’ is a beautiful blend of science fiction and philosophy. The story unfolds as a dark monstrous apparition – Apophis – feverishly races past the expanse of the Milky Way galaxy and bolts to the edge of the solar system. Recklessly accelerating, this sinister twin-headed asteroid continues its inebriated journey to soon rain resolute chaos upon Earth. Five ancient philosophers reincarnated nine years ago in different cities across the planet – New York, Hong Kong, New Delhi, Azores Islands in Portugal, and Buyukada Island in Turkey, discover amongst haunting memories of their phantasmal past lives, that it is their destiny to save humanity from the evil forces unleashed by the Skyllats from across the galaxy. And now, these nine-year-old sentient beings must rely on their shared, ancient wisdom to prepare humanity for the imminent war across the galaxy.
‘The Rape Trial’ by Bidisha Ghosal
Bidisha Ghosal’s ‘The Rape Trial’ is a work of fiction on the stark truths of our society. It begins with the revelation that, many years ago, Rahul Satyabhagi had indeed raped Avni Rambha. Rahul has long been acquitted and Avni had left the country for her peace of mind. Now, it looks like he’s about to get away with it again. What do you do when the rapist is someone you know? What do you do when he has been found innocent in the eyes of the law? Three friends Rhea, Hitachi, and Amruta find themselves struggling to answer these questions together. Nearly a decade has passed since Rahul Satyabhagi, heir to the mega Satyabhagi business empire, had raped Avni Rambha, bested her in court, and gone on to become a men’s rights activist, and the whos-who of Badrid Bay had breathed a sigh of relief that the sordid mess was over. But now a sting operation proves what many, the three friends included, had suspected all along – he’d been lying.
‘Pi Agency’ by Neelabh Pratap Singh
Neelabh Pratap Singh’s crime thriller ‘PI Agency’ is the story of a private investigator, Rashmi Purohit, a failed CBI aspirant who struggles to run her own private detective agency, PI Agency, out of her claustrophobic basement. When a wealthy businessman with a troubled drug-addicted son arrives at her doorstep, a cash-strapped Rashmi Purohit and her band of amateurs grab the opportunity.
Little do they know that the enemy they are up against doesn’t just operate in the shady ghettos of the capital but also in the darkest recesses of the virtual world. What seems like a perfect case may destroy her agency and her life in more ways than possible.
Want to read more in Hindi? Checkout: ‘जिंदगी फाउंडेशन’ की मदद से गरीब छात्रों ने पास की नीट परीक्षा
‘Medical Astrology’ by Dr. Deepak Singla
Dr. Deepak Singla’s ‘Medical Astrology’ is a practical guide book for timely preparation for a healthy and happy life, free from sorrow and suffering caused by disease or accidents. The ancient science of Vedic astrology is focused in this guide on the physical and mental health-related wisdom. Effective remedies are also given. The book talks about how planets play a role to indicate a specific disease. This allows individuals to monitor actions to keep away a particular ailment. The author has also mentioned the mantras and tips to ward off or keep away the disease.
‘Few Shades of Love’ by Kamal Panda
Kamal Panda’s ‘Few Shades of Love’ is a book with a tale of love where Manas, a populist youth leader, when denied his love decides to take revenge on the tyrant village head, and Anaya, a graduate student waited for her lost love with hope and faith, while on the other hand, Krishanv, a teenage lover dares to fall in love again. To love and to be loved, is it that complicated? The writer has woven the ‘Shades of Love’ to narrate three love stories in this book. (IANS)
High drama was witnessed in Kanpur Dehat for over an hour when a man, upset over his wife's alleged affair with a local man, climbed the tower with his children and threatened to commit suicide. The incident took place on Monday near Gandhi Nagar in Akbarpur, when the man threatened to commit suicide after throwing his kids down from a height of nearly 40-feet. Chaos prevailed around the area and the locals informed the police that rushed to the spot.
After about half-an-hour of convincing, the police managed to bring him and his children down. The man told the police that his wife's affair was going on with his neighbor. He had complained to the police, but no action was taken. Police said that as per the man, his wife had developed an illicit relationship with a man, living nearby their house. "As per the man, in his absence, his neighbor visited his house often. He said that he had reprimanded his neighbor many times, but to no avail," said the police.
The man had complained to the police, but no action was taken. | Pixabay
The man had also lodged a complaint with the police but no action was taken. On the other hand, Akbarpur police said that on the basis of the complaint, action for breach of peace has been taken against the neighbor accused of luring his wife. Circle officer (CO) Akbarpur Arun Kumar said that the police are trying to sort out the issue. "Whatever action is appropriate will be taken," the official added. (IANS/SP)
(Keywords : Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, man, wife, alleged, affair, children, India, police, neighbor, complaint, suicide, accuse, drama.)
The US forces continued their bombardment of buildings and institutions in Syria's northeastern Hasakah province, as part of their alleged manhunt of Islamic State (IS) fugitives, state news agency SANA reported. The US forces are shelling buildings and public institutions on Tuesday in the vicinity of the Sina'a prison in the Gweiran neighborhood in Hasakah "on the pretext of hunting down IS militants who fled the prison," said SANA.
The Syrian Foreign Ministry has slammed the US airstrikes as civilian casualties have been reported. | Wikimedia Commons
The shelling came in tandem with waves of raids by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) to homes in the surrounding areas, rounding up many civilians and taking them to unknown locations, the state news agency added. On January 20, IS inmates inside the Sina'a prison, which is controlled by the SDF, started a riot that was coordinated with IS militants from outside, who detonated the prison's gates with two booby-trapped vehicles, succeeding to free some prisoners.
The incident triggered clashes between IS and the SDF as well as US airstrikes on the areas, where the IS fugitives could have sought shelter in, Xinhua news agency reported. The clashes and airstrikes are still ongoing as the SDF has so far failed to contain the situation and storm the prison. The Syrian Foreign Ministry has slammed the US airstrikes as civilian casualties have been reported. Hasakah province is largely controlled by the US-backed SDF, while certain areas, particularly in the city of Qamishli, are still under the control of the Syrian government. (IANS/ MBI)
(Keywords: US forces, shelling, bombarding, syria, islamic state, civilian casualties, qamishli, tandem, syrian democratic forces)
The circulating avian influenza outbreaks, including in India, do not seem to pose the 'high' risk but surveillance and biosecurity measures are necessary to reduce spillover risk between poultry and wild birds, a UN-backed scientific task force said. Throughout the past autumn and current winter in the northern hemisphere, multiple avian influenza outbreaks, caused predominantly by the H5N1 HPAI virus, plus other subtypes, including H5N8, have occurred in India, the UK, the Netherlands and Israel with the ever recorded mortality of the Svalbard barnacle geese in Solway Coast.
The Scientific Task Force on Avian Influenza and Wild Birds, co-convened by the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) and the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), on Monday recommended that surveillance and biosecurity measures are reinforced to reduce spillover risk between poultry and wild birds. The Task Force has convened and produced recommendations and guidance for authorities and managers of countries affected or at risk. Wild birds, including globally threatened species, are victims of HPAI viruses causing avian influenza. Affected sites also include areas of international relevance for conservation such as protected wetlands.
More than 2,400 migratory water birds died in the Pong wetlands in Himachal last year because of avian influenza. | Unsplash
It is essential that authorities with responsibility for animal health apply the One Health approach for communicating and addressing avian influenza. That means recognising the health of humans, domestic and wild animals, plants, and the wider environment and acting with a coordinated and unified approach. The Task Force reminds authorities of their international obligations to ensure their response to the pathogenic virus does not include the culling of wild birds, nor actions that would cause damage to natural ecosystems, especially wetlands.
Ruth Cromie, who coordinated the work of the Task Force and the production of the statement, said: "Avian influenza represents a One Health issue threatening health across the board. The highly pathogenic viruses are still relatively new in wild birds and this winter's high levels of mortality remind us of their vulnerability and that working to promote healthy wildlife benefits us all." H5N1 is currently the avian influenza lineage most found in Africa and Eurasia in both poultry and wild birds. The wide range of wild birds affected include wildfowl, waders, gulls, cranes, grebes, herons, pelicans, gamebirds, corvids and raptors (diurnal and nocturnal), in addition to sporadic cases in mammals such as red fox (Vulpes vulpes), Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra) and harbor Phoca vitulina and grey seal Halichoerus grypus.
Consider occupational exposure, e.g. those working on poultry culling operations. | Unsplash
In terms of human health, the currently circulating H5N1 HPAI viruses do not seem to pose the same zoonotic risk as the 'original' Asian lineage H5N1 (clade 2.2 and their derivatives plus clade 220.127.116.11b H5N6 viruses currently in China). In general, the risk can be considered low, recognising that some agencies now consider occupational exposure, e.g. those working on poultry culling operations, as low or moderate. In India, several instances of bird flu were reported in 2021. More than 2,400 migratory water birds, and almost half of them being endangered bar-headed goose, died in the Pong wetlands in Himachal Pradesh last year and that avian influenza (H5N1) was the cause.
Besides the bar-headed goose, the other species that died were the shoveler, the river tern, the pochard and the common teal. An 11-year-old boy died at All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Delhi last year due to avian influenza, country's first fatality. India reported the first outbreak of avian influenza in 2006. RSPB Scotland is calling for an emergency local moratorium restricting shooting on the Solway for the rest of the wildfowling season. It calls for urgent action to reduce the devastating impacts of avian influenza. New statistics from the most recent counts show that the UK is this winter experiencing the worst outbreak of this deadly disease on record, with migratory geese which 'over winter' on the Solway being the hardest hit.
According to RSPB Scotland, the latest population counts of the Svalbard barnacle goose show a drop in numbers from 43,703 in November last year to 27,133 in this month's count. This represents a decline of 38 per cent in the Svalbard breeding population of this species from winter 2020-21. CMS Executive Secretary Amy Fraenkel said: "Through late 2021 and early 2022 there have been numerous outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1, with severe impacts on migratory birds. "The CMS Secretariat responded by convening the Scientific Task Force on Avian Influenza and Wild Birds together with the FAO. We are pleased to share its advice and key recommendations for countries affected or at risk, and look forward to continuing our collaborative work to minimize risks to humans, poultry and wild populations of migratory birds." (IANS/SP)
(Keywords : avian, influenza, surveillance, United Nation, scientists, breeding, population, birds, affected, countries, poultry, migratory, health, issue, virus, responsibility, international, ecosystem.)