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BY SALIL GEWALI
When the desire for a sense-object overwhelms, the logical mind becomes unsteady. This subsequently might force the “feet” to take wrong steps. Sometimes such wrong steps are brutally detrimental. While the high society of Bollywood is now joyfully groping in the darkness of materialism, some section of actors is longing for a “quick high” and so they are doping themselves with intoxicants. The recent shocking revelation following the controversial suicide case of Sushant Singh Rajput has rocked the entire country. The media went overboard. The finding of the intricate network between the drug cartels and the actor Rhea Chakraborty, who was a former girlfriend of Sushant Singh, has brought forth what were less known earlier. Rhea Chakraborty has now been arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau, India. Many other are being interrogated, top actors of B-town are deeply involved. A senior psychiatrist from Pune says — “what we have heard about the ‘Bollywood’s tryst with drugs’ is just the tip of the iceberg. In the country, our youths, from lower to upper economic strata, are badly affected by the drug addiction.”
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Of course, while the drugs with various combinations and names have penetrated deeply into Indian society, the Government agencies and its police forces are practically caught between the devil and the deep sea. Well, with the cutting-edge technology at ones’ command, the jaws of the menace have more teeth now, and thus it looks more ferocious and ominous. While, about 25-30 million people in USA are drug addicts and are mentally depressed, India is not far behind as the trend is catching on. High society apart, the addiction to various addictive substances among adolescent students in India have adversely affected the countless households. Any unsuspecting corners could be the hotspot while the WhatsApp and mobile messengers are the faithful interface. They easily help pull off the dope deal anytime, anywhere.
One can put the blame on the flawed modern culture. The society usually advocate the “personal freedom” for the youngster at an age who can’t even “distinguish” between good and bad, decent and indecent and nectar and poison. Not just that, in the thick delusion of the dope pleasure and its addiction, many have begun to see even the household members as their deadly enemies. A few week ago, a certain newspaper carried the news that a father was beaten black and blue by his own cannabis addict son. The son, with his face masked, did this only to snatch away the money which the father was carrying after drawing the monthly salary. Just look at the degree of desperation that drives the addicted son to act so abnormally and with such cruelty. Procuring the addictive substance is his only goal, no matter how, no matter what.
There are countless mothers who have been constantly tormented by drug-dependent adolescent children. An increasing number of petty thefts, muggings, burglaries, lootings and a host of violent attacks on the roadsides, which often disrupt the peace in the society, have usually to do with those who have fallen victim to narcotics. It’s reported that in a span of one year there is about 20% to 30% rise in the substance abuse in India. A worried social activists from Bangalore, Mr. Rajiv Iyer laments thus — “Unemployment and availability of various kind of drugs are the main reasons for an upsurge in the menace. The frustrated lot is quite prone to seek escape and take refuge in substances which are made available by their peer groups.” True, the saying — ‘the devil makes work for idle hands’ should always make the government and the parents extra alert.
Want to read more in Hindi? Checkout: अलर्ट ! अब 25 करोड़ लोगों तक पहुंचेगा कोविड-19 का टीका
In this aspect what intensely upsets the police fraternity is NDPS act (Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances). The act lets off the addict/seller with less than 5 grams of drug. It is being heavily exploited to get the peddlers out of prison. Most of the hard-core peddlers, with the help of lawyers, peddle the stories of innocence too quickly and too easily. The addicted are fondly caressed; hence a peddler pretend to be the one!
With the increase in the drug abuse and its adverse impact on society, we should question the law practitioners that why the ethics are just thrown to the wind and put the soul up for sale! Many worried parents and also police officers have accounted how a bunch of “lawyers” cleverly use the loopholes in the NDPS act to save the cruel peddlers having link with international drug cartels. One affluent businessman Mr. Ravi Mehta from Mumbai quips “Don’t the lawyers know it is the narcotic peddlers who usually entice our unsuspecting children with the doses of opium/cocaine first and then push them into the pit of no-return? Do the lawyers have no grown-up children at home who might in a twist of fate be caught up by such peddlers and teach them this dangerous habit?” Ravi Mehta has only one son who had fallen victim of the drug addiction and is now in a rehab centre.
One of the police officers in Delhi, who put all efforts in arresting a good number of drug peddlers in two months, rues — “all those arrested drug peddlers by our dedicated team were released on bails within no time. Many have again got into the same trade/habit. This fact alone discourages our police fraternity to hunt around for the peddlers on a war footing. Besides, we also have to go through lengthy procedures and papers formalities before arresting any peddlers.” This is the ground really directly from the horse’s mouth. One believes, why does the government not consider relieving the police of gathering the evidence and maintain the tedious paper work? For that let there be a separate cell with narcotic experts in each state. The police job should end immediately with the arrest of the culprit. This way we can achieve a very good result, else, the society will be further afflicted with the scourge.
One of the concerned scholars from Mumbai says, “Parents these days feel happy about buying expensive mobiles for their children. Do they really care to know what other horrible activities that their grown-up children are getting done with the help of the devices? So far I know, the drug-related message and information is only one of the many vices.” A secretary of a welfare organisation in Assam, Mr. Manish Patel, who has continuously asked this writer to write article about the rise of drug menace, quips —“All should join hands to contain the drug menace. Especially the parents should not be complacent after sending their children to college and tuition armed with cell phones. Many outrageous things prop up to greet one right at the click of the cell phone.” Indeed Mr. Patel is very correct that the “parents must be extra watchful” now than ever before. The vices now come and attack us in the “digital format” in various avatars for which we do not see any effective anti-vices being peddled by anyone and anywhere.
An India-based writer and researcher, Salil Gewali is best known for his research-based work entitled ‘Great Minds on India’ which has earned worldwide appreciations. Translated into Twelve languages, his book has been prefaced by a world-acclaimed NASA Chief scientist – Dr. Kamlesh Lulla of Houston, USA.
The US researchers have discovered a class of immune cells that plays a role in miscarriage, which affects about a quarter of pregnancies.
Researchers at the University of California-San Francisco found that the recently discovered subset of cells known as extrathymic Aire-expressing cells in the immune system may prevent the mother's immune system from attacking the placenta and fetus.
The researchers showed that pregnant mice who did not have this subset of cells were twice as likely to miscarry, and in many of these pregnancies fetal growth was severely restricted.
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"When you're pregnant, the immune system is seeing the placenta for the first time in decades -- not since the mother made a placenta when she herself was a fetus," said Eva Gillis-Buck, from UCSF.
"Our research suggests that this subset of immune cells is carrying out a sort of 'secondary education' -- sometimes many years after the better-known population of the educator cells have carried out the primary education in the thymus -- teaching T cells not to attack the fetus, the placenta and other tissues involved in pregnancy," she added. The findings are published in the journal Science Immunology.
The immune system has to be educated not to attack one's own tissues and organs to prevent autoimmune disease. But pregnancy presents a unique challenge since the fetus expresses proteins found in the placenta as well as proteins whose genetics are distinct from the mother.
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"It was a conceptual leap to link Aire-expressing cells, which are critical for preventing autoimmune disease, to pregnancy," said Tippi Mackenzie, Professor of Surgery at UCSF's Center for Maternal Foetal Precision Medicine.
In the thymus, Aire-expressing cells begin interacting with other immune cells very early in life to teach them what not to attack. The thymus begins to shrink and is nearly gone by adulthood, by which time most immune cells have been educated. But as the thymus shrinks, the population of eTACs in lymph nodes and the spleen expands, the researchers explained.
The study suggests a healthy pregnancy may depend on having these cells around, they added. (IANS/KB)
The tiny emojis being shared on billions of devices worldwide can play a major role in digital communication, with most people saying that emoji compels them to feel more empathy towards others, according to an Adobe report.
Adobe's global emoji study found that emoji even helps people overcome language barriers and form connections that would otherwise be difficult to do.
"We were surprised and delighted by the discoveries made in the survey, most notably how enthusiastic respondents were for emoji as a means to express themselves," the company said in a statement.
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Emojis sometimes get criticized for being overly saccharine, but this sweetness is key when it comes to diffusing some of the heaviness of online communication.
"Many of the emoji are focused on positive emotions, so it's easy to insert them into our conversations and lighten the mood," the Adobe study said.
It's not surprising that over half of those surveyed feel more comfortable using emojis than talking on the phone or in person.
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This applies to less intense situations too. Dating, for example, can be tricky — especially when it's online or via digital apps, as it often is now.
The study also found that emoji even helps people overcome language barriers and form connections that would otherwise be difficult to do.
In celebration of World Emoji Day on Saturday, Adobe's '2021 Global Emoji Trend Report' surveyed 7,000 people in the US, the UK, Germany, France, Japan, Australia, and South Korea. (IANS/KB)
Following the grand Richard Branson show where he carried Andhra Pradesh-born Sirisha Bandla and fellow space travelers on his shoulders after successfully flying to the edge of space, it is time for Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos to applaud Sanjal Gavande, one of the key engineers who designed the New Shephard rocket set to take Bezos and the crew to space on July 20.
Billionaire Bezos is set to fly to the edge of space aboard what is touted as the world's first unpiloted suborbital flight. Born in Kalyan, Maharashtra, Gavande is a systems engineer at Blue Origin who always dreamt of designing aerospace rockets.
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After completing Bachelor's in mechanical engineering from the University of Mumbai, she flew to the US in 2011 to pursue a Master's in mechanical engineering from the Michigan Technological University. She also applied for an engineering job at the US space agency NASA but finally landed her dream job at Blue Origin
Sirisha flew to the US in 2011 to pursue a Master's in mechanical engineering from the Michigan Technological University.IANS
Bezos, his brother Mark, aviation pioneer Mary Wallace 'Wally' Funk, and other passengers are set to liftoff from west Texas and travel just beyond the edge of space on July 20. Blue Origin announced this week that Oliver Daemen, an 18-year-old high school graduate from the Netherlands, would join the crew.
Oliver is the son of millionaire Joe Daemen, Founder, and CEO of the Dutch investment company Somerset Capital Partners. Blue Origin, however, did not reveal how much Daemen paid for his son's trip to space. Bezos chose July 20 as the launch date to honor the 52nd anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.
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The launch site for Blue Origin's first human flight will be in a remote location north of Van Horn, Texas, from where the firm had launched New Shepard for previous flights. Blue Origin has received final approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to carry humans on the New Shepard rocket into space.
On July 12, Bandla touched the edge of space with three others, including Virgin Galactic's billionaire CEO Richard Branson. Bandla vaulted into space onboard VSS Unity 22. After the successful spaceflight, Branson carried the Indian-American on his shoulders while celebrating their flight to space, at Spaceport America in New Mexico. (IANS/KB)