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- Maharana Pratap’s name goes in the immortal history of heroism and determination
- It was in this battle that Maharana Pratap’s beloved and trusted horse Chetak was wounded in his hind leg
- On the strength of his small army, many times Maharana Pratap attacked the enemies and defeated them
Maharana Pratap was a man of strong Rajput character; he was far more brave and chivalrous than any of his siblings. He was known for his kind-heartedness and just decision making and won him hearts of even his enemies. Maharana Pratap was the only ruler of India that did not give in to the Mughal invasion and for the same reason; he is credited as the most celebrated ruler of the country to this day.
Battle of Haldighati
During the famous battle of Haldighati, Maharana Pratap’s own brother, Shakti Singh, helped him in escaping the battlefield. The heroic Battle of Haldighati was fought in June 1576 saw 22,000 Rajput warriors fighting against more than two lakh Mughal soldiers led by Raja Man Singh and Asaf Khan. It is believed that this battle between Maharana Pratap and Akbar proved to be devastating like the Mahabharata war. However, in this war neither Maharana Pratap was defeated nor Akbar could win. In spite of their strength, the Mughals were not able to imprison Rana who fled through a 40-kilometre long pass. The Mughal continued with their attacks on the Rajput army even after Haldighati war and it weakened Pratap’s army. Gradually, Pratap was left with no money to support his army and it was his minister Bhama Shah who came to his rescue and gave all his wealth to Maharana Pratap.
Brave Horse chetak
It was in this battle that his beloved and trusted horse Chetak was wounded in his hind leg. Chetak jumped over the 26 feet long groove. Before breathing his last, Chetak delivered Maharana Pratap to safe ground.
After that, he took refuge in the Aravalli hills and the Bhil tribals of the Aravallis supported Maharana during the time of adversity. While in exile, Maharana Pratap perfected his art of war tactics like guerrilla warfare, harassing the enemy and light horse tactics which eventually helped him win back Mewar. Records also state that during his exile, Maharana Pratap was once at breaking point.
His name goes in the immortal history of heroism and determination.
During his fight against Akbar, Maharana Pratap told his soldiers, “My brave warrior brothers, our Motherland, this holy land of Mewar, are still under the clutches of the Mughals. Today, I take an oath in front of all of you that till Chittor is freed, I will not have food in gold and silver plates, will not sleep on a soft bed and will not stay in the palace; instead I will eat food on a leaf-plate, sleep on the floor and stay in a hut. I will also not shave till Chittor is freed. My brave warriors, I am sure that you will support me in every way by sacrificing your mind, body and wealth till this oath is fulfilled.”
Take a look at some of the facts that dignify the life of one of the immortal king of India:
- Maharana Pratap was born on 9 May 1540 to Maharana Udai Singh of the Sisodiya clan of Rajputs, the rulers of Mewar.
- Against his father’s wish, Maharana Pratap became the ruler of Mewar. His father wanted his favourite son Jagmal as his successor. But the senior nobles of Mewar decided that Maharana Pratap was the first son and rightful successor should be crowned king.
- Maharana Pratap was honoured with the title of ‘Leonidas of Rajasthan’, given by the famous British antiquarian, Colonel Tod.
- On the strength of his small army, many times Maharana Pratap attacked the enemies and defeated them.
- If we go by the history then Maharana Pratap was called ‘Kika’ in his childhood.
- To honour the deeds of Maharana Pratap’s horse Chetak, a temple has also been built, which is still safe in turmeric.
- It is said that even after realizing the strength of Akbar, Maharana Pratap didn’t bow before him. Although, Akbar sent many messages to Maharana Pratap and tried to merge Mewar in his kingdom.
- Maharana Pratap stood at 7 feet 5 inches and weighed around 110 kilograms. Having such a robust personality, he carried spear weighing 81 kilograms, the armour of his chest weighed 72 kg and the overall weight of his attire including two swords weighed up to 208 kilograms. Maharana Pratap’s sword and armour are still kept safe in the museum of Udaipur Raj Gharana.
- In total, Maharana Pratap had 11 wives, 17 sons and 5 daughters. His first wife, Maharani Ajabde Punwar was his favourite. They got married in 1557 and their first son and successor Amar Singh I was born in 1559.
- To strengthen Rajput unity, Maharana Pratap married many Rajput princesses.
- Once, Maharana Pratap son, Amar Singh arrested women from the Mughal camp along with other prisoners and brought them to his kingdom. On knowing it, Maharana Pratap rebuked his son for this act and ordered to send women back to their camp with escorts.
- The army of Maharana Pratap attempted to recapture Chittor that had been captured by Mughals.
- The Mughal forces led by Akbar conquered Chittoor, Gogunda, Kumbhalgarh and Udaipur. It was only Maharana Pratap who didn’t put down his arms before Akbar.
- To the surprise of many people, Chetak had blue eyes and that is why Maharana is often referred as ‘Rider of the Blue Horse’.
- Maharana Pratap died at the age of 57, after sustaining an injury while hunting.
Jack Daniel's is the world's most popular whiskey brand, but until recently, few people knew the liquor was created by Nathan "Nearest" Green, an enslaved Black man who mentored Daniel.
"We've always known," says Debbie Staples, a great-great-granddaughter of Green's who heard the story from her grandmother. … "He made the whiskey, and he taught Jack Daniel. And people didn't believe it … it's hurtful. I don't know if it was because he was a Black man."
But people believe it now — in large part because Brown-Forman Corporation, owner of Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey, has acknowledged the foundational role Green played in the brand's development.
"The truth of the matter is, Nearest Green was the first head distiller of Jack Daniels whiskey," says Matt Blevins, global brand director for Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey. "We're very proud of this story and are very committed to amplifying it and acknowledging that. In the past, we did not amplify it the way that we could have in earlier eras, but we're about the future and moving forward."
America's first-known Black master distiller
The story begins in Lynchburg, Tennessee, current home of the Jack Daniel Distillery. In the mid-1800s, Green's slaveholders hired him out to a local preacher named Dan Call. Green, who had a reputation as a skilled distiller, made whiskey for Call, using a sugar maple charcoal filtering process that is believed to have originated in West Africa. Daniel, a boy who worked for Call, became Green's apprentice and learned the special technique that gave the Tennessee whiskey its smooth taste.
After emancipation in 1863, when all enslaved people were freed, Daniel purchased Call's distillery and hired Green as Jack Daniel Distillery's first master distiller.
"The best knowledge that we have is that they had a mentor-and-mentee sort of a relationship, and I would say, a friendship," says Blevins. "The stories that have been passed down [talk] about the care that Jack Daniel took to always acknowledge … the Green family."
Historic photo of Jack Daniel (in white hat) seated next to George Green, the son of Nathan "Nearest" Green Image source: VOA
There are no known pictures of Green, but there is one of Daniel with Green's son, George, sitting next to Daniel, rather than being relegated to the back.
"That photograph shows the respect that they had for one another and for their families," says Stefanie Benjamin, an assistant professor of tourism management at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. "To be not only allowed in that photograph, but also positioned in the foreground and sitting right next to Jack Daniels himself."
Search for the truth
Green's role in the history of the brand was uncovered by a writer and entrepreneur named Fawn Weaver, who became fascinated by Green's unheralded contribution to the world's most popular whiskey. After extensive research, including interviews with Green's descendants, Weaver shared her documentation with the company.
"I was very pleasantly surprised when they embraced my research and updated their records to reflect that," Weaver told VOA via email. "I think it said a lot about the character of their company that they moved that quickly to course correct."
Jack Daniel's has incorporated Green's contributions into the official history of the brand, but Weaver has gone a step further. She invested $1 million of her own money to establish Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey, which is now the fastest-growing independent American whiskey brand in U.S. history.
Fawn Weaver (center in red) with her leadership team at Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey, including master distiller Victoria Eady Butler (far left), the great‐great‐granddaughter of Nearest Green. (Photo courtesy Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey) Image credit: VOA
The company's master distiller is Victoria Eady Butler, Green's great‐great‐granddaughter.
"Uncle Nearest is the most-awarded American whiskey or bourbon of 2019, 2020 and 2021, and the fact that it is the bloodline of Nearest Green blending and approving what goes into our bottles is something I marvel at regularly," Weaver says. "Victoria is an absolute natural when it comes to blending, and to watch her work is to see something pretty darn close to perfection."
Seven generations of Green's family have worked at the Jack Daniel Distillery, a tradition that continues today with Staples and two of her siblings. But the Green family did not benefit when the Daniel family sold the Jack Daniel distillery to Brown-Forman for $20 million in 1956.
"Although they [the Green family] were very well off in terms of finances [in the 1800s] in that time, they were not the owners or co-owners of the Jack Daniel distillery," Benjamin says. "And so, those millions of dollars have been passed down through generations of the Jack Daniel family, and not necessarily the Green family."
Maturing barrels of whiskey in a barrel house on the grounds of the Jack Daniel Distillery in Lynchburg, Tennessee. (Photo courtesy Jack Daniel's) Image credit: VOA
Weaver's Uncle Nearest Premium Whiskey has joined forces with Jack Daniel's to launch a program that provides support, expertise and resources to African-American entrepreneurs entering the spirits industry.
Staples says her family is thrilled their great-great-grandfather is finally being recognized.
"It's kind of mind-boggling … and we are so proud," Staples says. "And to think that from here to Africa, that recipe goes all the way back. And to think that he played such an important role in establishing this company. It sometimes seems unreal. It really does."
Because of Weaver's tenacity, Green's story, although left untold for more than a century, will not be lost to history. But that's not the case with so many other stories of Black achievement and contributions to the nation.
"Part of telling his story and sharing his legacy is to give credit and to give attention to a person who, if it wasn't for him, we wouldn't have the Jack Daniel whiskey as we know it today," Benjamin says. "It showcases yet another example of how formerly enslaved people, Black people, African American people who have really built this country, are left out of the dominant narrative that we tell." (VOA/RN)
(This article is originally written by Dora Mekouar)
Keywords: Jack Daniel's, Whiskey, Nathan Green, Slavery, Black achievement
Cricket fans can now book the ultimate experience with the official accommodation booking partner for the ICC Men's T20 World Cup, Booking.com. The T20 Pavillion, a bespoke cricket-themed luxury stay that transforms the Presidential Suite at Grand Hyatt Mumbai Hotel and Residences into a classic cricket stadium.
The suite offers guests an all-inclusive once-in-a-lifetime experience during the India vs Pakistan ICC Men's T20 World Cup match on October 24, 2021, packed with quirks and luxuries that is sure to satisfy even the biggest cricket enthusiast. Additionally, as a part of the experience, guests will also have the exclusive opportunity to meet Bollywood actor Shraddha Kapoor at The T20 Pavilion.
The booking window that opens at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday and will be booked on a 'first come, first serve' basis with check-in date on October 24, 2021 and check-out on October 25, 2021. | Photo by Alessandro Bogliari on Unsplash
For one night only, guests can soak in the energy of a roaring stadium to enjoy the epic match on a life-sized screen while seated on comfortable sofas -- just like the luxury box seats at the stadium. They can also head to the locker room (dining room) next to the field (living room) to have some energy drinks, just like a cricketer would do or head to the bedroom, transformed into a net practice area. It's got the field, the pitch, the locker room, pitching nets and cricket memorabilia infused in every element of the room.
The booking window opens at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday and will be booked on a 'first come, first serve' basis with check-in date on October 24, 2021, and check-out on October 25, 2021. The T20 Pavilion is priced at Rs 6666 only in honour of all the great sixes smashed at the T20 World Cup. The T20 Pavilion can accommodate up to four guests. Cricket fans can visit the website or mobile app to book this cricket-inspired stay. (IANS/ MBI)
Amid the rush to find quick treatments for Covid-19 last year, the world saw a global race to find new stem cell-based treatments. Now, researchers report that such therapies were filled with violations of government regulations, inflated medical claims and distorted public communication. There are reports of patients suffering physical harm -- including blindness and death -- from unproven stem cell therapies.
"Efforts to rapidly develop therapeutic interventions should never occur at the expense of the ethical and scientific standards that are at the heart of responsible clinical research and innovation," said lead study author Laertis Ikonomou, associate professor of oral biology at University at Buffalo, New York. There are clinics offering unproven and unsafe "stem cell" therapies that promise to prevent Covid-19 by strengthening the immune system or improving overall health, the researchers noted in the paper published in the journal Stem Cell Reports.
There are reports of patients suffering physical harm -- including blindness and death -- from unproven stem cell therapies. | Photo by Viktor Forgacs on Unsplash
The findings from preliminary studies on possible stem cell-based Covid-19 treatments are frequently being exaggerated through press releases, social media and uncritical news media reports. Clinics selling supposed stem cell treatments on a direct-to-consumer basis sometimes use these findings and news reports to exploit the fears of vulnerable patients by unethically advertising the unproven benefits of stem cell treatments to boost the immune system, regenerate lung tissue and prevent transmission of Covid-19, said co-author Leigh Turner from the University of California, Irvine.
"Patients suffer financially as well, as the products range in price from a few thousand to tens of thousands of dollars, and people are often encouraged to receive the expensive treatments every few months," added Ikonomou. Patients led to believe they are protected against Covid-19 may decide against vaccination, stop wearing masks, cease engaging in physical distancing, or otherwise avoid behaviours intended to promote personal safety and public health.
They may also become less likely to take part in carefully-developed clinical trials conducted by companies that follow ethical standards. "Scientists, regulators and policymakers must guard against the proliferation of poorly designed, underpowered and duplicative studies that are launched with undue haste because of the pandemic, but are unlikely to provide convincing, clinically meaningful safety and efficacy data," Turner stressed. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: findings,studies,therapies,unproven,reports,treatments, pandemic, covid, world