Sunday, May 27, 2007

the last posts of the british empire

bombay gymkhana,calcutta club and the bangalore club(bus club) enjoy enviable reputations.they all belong to the same genre.clubs formed in the late nineteenth century by englishmen,of englishmen and for englishmen. a home away from home. plush lawns,swimming pools,tennis and badminton courts,reading rooms,siesta rooms,change rooms,cards rooms,banquet halls,etc.etc. and not to forget the 'men's only' bar.

a place where the family would come together, and each would mind his/her own business. the children would quickly melt away with the other children-hollering and playing in the huge expanses .the women would sit together and gossip and the men would play football,cricket,tennis and even rugby and then move around naked in the washrooms and later head to the bar for a moderately priced "scotch" or a draft beer. if the lady felt like staying over, they would even dine in the club and return home just when the club doors were being shut.

at one time meant exclusively for englishmen with strict dress codes and rules and regulations for members,these clubs have literally become the last posts of the british empire.they have very strict membership rules and applicants are interviewed by a balloting committee with balloting committee members having the power to 'blackball' any of the become a member was an achievement. something one could proudly add to one's resume. for some members getting into the managing committee was a burning ambition and when that did happen the wives ended up throwing more weight than their spouses. our brown sahibs literally became more british than the britishers. heard quite often in the cloak room,"bearer,garam pani milenga?".

when i was about eight years old i was initiated into the club culture. my father took me to the calcutta club where he was a member.that was my first contact with this imperial institution.i would 'knock' for half an hour every morning with the club's tennis 'marker' as those who taught youngsters and played with members were called.his name was idris.the old man would call it a day after the allotted time of half an hour by saying "aaj hog"(suffice for the day).a humble equivalent of a coach, the marker would teach you how to grip the racket,volley and serve.and play with you from the opposite side and leave you to play with other members once you had reached a certain standard.

the calcutta club is an elite club and its members are the 'creme de la creme' of calcutta's professional and business has strict dresscodes.e.g.shorts not permitted other than on tennis,squash and badminton to kurta and pyjama.ditto kurta and trouser.shirt with dhoti follows the same fate.except with dhoti,chappals are not permisssible.shirts should be buttoned up.t shirts without collar not allowed and jeans in the evening not permitted.and certain hours beyond which children are not allowed to stay on.till a few months back men were supreme with membership restrictions on women.the all-male bastion,this 100 year-old club will now start admitting women too as members in their own right.

when my father was transferred to bombay, he became a member of the bombay gymkhana. he was a keen tennis player.his tennis was above club standard but he would play only with the marker with whom he would have made a prior booking.just for 30 minutes.he would then pack off.he hardly visited the club for any other business excepting for his monthly haircut. many members even now make their appearance in the club for their monthly 'crop'.i used to accompany him for many years with my tennis racket and later became a junior member and after i completed my studies and started earning,i became a fulltime member.i have been a member for nearly 40 years now.bombay gymkhana was my second used to be my fuelling station.situated almost at midpoint between our home at churchgate and the victoria terminus station from where i would take a local train to bhandup about 28 kms from vt station to work.baked beans on toast, or tea no1,or plain mint tea in the the evenings after a good workout it would be a drink at the bar to unwind after a hard day's work.

later when i was posted to bangalore i became a member of the bangalore club known those days as the bangalore united services club(bus club).our family has spent so much time here that each one of us can write a book on our memories and experiences. when l was four,she nearly got drowned in the club's swimming pool.luckily, i was playing in the tennis court just ten feet away. she later learnt swimming and won many competitions in school.draft beer was a novelty then and the united breweries was so close to the bangalore club that we would joke that draft beer was available on the pipeline.there were lots of get-togethers; the main ones being the x'mas eve dance and the new year's eve dance. the club culture has bitten l and h too who frequent the club often during their free time for sports and socialising.

the ice is melting in all these clubs. slowly but surely. calcutta club which did not extend an invitation to the west bengal governor gopalkrishna gandhi's wife tara for a particular event because of her sex or khuswant singh was not allowed entry to madras club because he wore a chappal or maqbool fida hussain,the worldfamous painter was stopped at the bombay gymkhana gate because he was barefeet are all history. the rigid rules have been relaxed, women have got voting rights and can become committe members and dress codes are not stuffy anymore. these clubs,i might say have become a bit broader in outlook. finding themselves unviable due to poor footfall and restricted membership, they have opened the doors for company-sponsored members with huge admission fees. club shops have become very modern and some of the clubs have even leased their shop spaces to famous retail houses. gyms have been spruced up with the latest fitness machines,steam and sauna and beauty salons.

lord winston churchill who served the british army was posted for a brief period in bangalore.he was a frequent visitor to the bar and a bill of rs 13 remains unpaid by him.the club's celebrity defaulter.shown in the book of accounts as "irrecoverable debts". prince charles had a hearty laugh when he was shown this list when he visited bangalore club several years ago.there were many englishmen who sent cheques to square up the account rather than see the ignoniminy of their former premier.bangalore club returned all the cheques.they preferred to have a celebrity defaulter.

'a passage to india' adaptation to a movie by david lean of the original book by e.m.forster had several shootings at the bangalore club.perhaps the famous 'mullagutawnny soup" originated here.that is what atleast some old waiters claim.mulagu in tamil is pepper and the soup is hot water mixed with pepper powder and rice.when this was offered to an englishman member,he was so delighted with the soup that he enquired of the waiter "what is this called?".the tamilian waiter promptly replied "milagu tanni,saar".

the bangalore club was built in the european classical or graeco roman style of architecture around 1868.while the bombay gymkhana was built around 1875 in a swiss chalet style club house and pavilion designed by john adams.the cost of construction was rs 18,625.the first ever test match in india was played in the bombay gymkhana grounds on 15th december 1933 lasting 4 days. several international rugby,badminton and squash tournaments have been held here .

bombay gymkhana will be celebrating its founders'day soon. perhaps the only club where cardplaying is forbidden. where young sportsmen are encouraged to excel in sports and membership is awarded on the strength of one's sporting credentials.after all the objective of the founding fathers was "to offer young sportsmen of small means the opportunity of indulging in their proclivities at a minimum cost to themselves and at a maximum production of enjoyment to the general public".

"koi sun raha hai?".

Thursday, May 24, 2007

names and namesakes-II

i saw mira nair's movie 'the namesake' before reading the book by jhumpa logic for following this order is simple.the movie will not run beyond a certain point of time. whereas one could read the book at any time at one's leisure. one might say wouldn't a dvd be available? well,the experience in watching a dvd at home and a movie in say inox multiplex is quite different.

also there is always a debate regarding the adaptation of a book to a film. while one can extend one's imagination while reading a book, it is not so in the case of a movie. the movie is explicit and definitive and does not leave much to imagination. and that to my mind becomes a bit restrictive.wherever there is an adaptation of a book,i normally do both. watch the movie and read the book. my understanding,experience and delight becomes complete. i get fully satiated.

in the instant case of 'the namesake', director mira nair has done a brilliant job. she breathes life into irfan khan,tabu and kal penn as ashok, ashima and gogol. ashok and ashima, a bengali couple from a traditional and conservative middle-class background move to the us in the 70s after an arranged marriage. they have a son-gogol and a daughter sonia. a typical case of abcd. gogol is left to explore what made his parents what they were. his annual visits to kolkata with his parents and interaction with his grandparents and other relatives gives him this insight which remains in his subconsciousness and etched in memory which manifests after the untimely death of his father.

gogol gets teased about his name in college and that gets his goat. he is a typical american boy. he has dates,affairs and they collapse. he is more into selfsatisfying things than spending quality time with his parents."i don't care what my parents want,it is what i want."

some scenes are very special. for example when ashima is asked to recite a poem when ashok's parents alongwith ashok visit ashima's house and she recites a few verses from wordsworth's 'daffodils'. or when before entering the room where they are all seated,ashima slips into ashok's imported shoes.when ashok dies suddenly in an anonymous midwestern city where he had gone to teach for a semester,gogol has to collect his father's body and personal effects.he too when he enters his father's flat slides into a pair of ashok's shoes.that was gogol's attempt to know the father he often ignored. also,gogol decides to have his head shaved off. a gangsta-rap score plays in the background in the barbershop.all these images are brilliantly shown by mira nair.and the howrah bridge and the bridge on 59th cross,new york.two cities,one oriental,the other occidental.shall the twain ever meet? ashima and ashok try to do that.go off to distant america.but live cocooned.with mainly bengali friends.their children are totally americanised.their language is american and ashima often feels that her children are like strangers to her..

essentially, the story is about two generations of bengalis in the us and their problems in making adjustments in a changed or different society. cold land,cold people. a bengali family stuck to its traditional ways. the children with no baggage to carry come off well though. by integrating themselves to american society. except of course for gogol the name gogol is a constant irritant. he goes back to his good name nikhil shortened to nicky. sonia moves away from home and marries a foreigner.that doesn't bother the parents as much as gogol's love affair with a rich american girl.after architecture at yale he falls in love with maxine(jacinda barrett) a typical wasp blonde princess from long island. when he brings her to meet his family her exhibition of her affection for gogol and calling gogol's mom by her name do not go well with the first generation bengali family. gogol eventually falls in love with moushimi(zuleikha robinson).a sort of an arranged cum love marriage with a childhood acquaintance.moushimi led a free and liberated life in paris before coming over to usa.she is also an abcd but more perhaps than gogol. the marriage is on the rocks due to her extramarital affair.

the death of ashok brings about a transformation in gogol.ashima takes it stoically though on hearing the news,after initial disbelief,she is absolutely devastated.sonia comes physically and emotionally closer to her mother.the first and second generation families share a deep emotional bond.gogol feels sorry for having created a ruckus over his name.he is a changed man.

jhumpa lahiri's book is fascinating and outstanding. in style,expressions,vivid descriptions,humour and has all of it.when you have read the book,you have experienced all these emotions. that itself says a lot about the writer.though a cliched subject,there is originality and imaginativeness in the writing. mira nair does a commendable adaptation is a jewel of a movie with culture and identity as strong themes within the film.mira nair said that it was somewhat like her own life story.the screenplay by sooni taraporewala is very is all about immigrant experiencce of the first attempt to integrate with the new world without forgetting the old.their sacrifices have afforded great opportunities to their children. and the search for identity of the second generation.i liked the movie is a sensitive and touching film.irfan does an outstanding job.tabu acts convincingly and with panache.perhaps the best performance of her career.jhumpa has a cameo role.but i wouldn't see it again.i liked the book more.i am already reading it for a second time.maybe i will read it many times more when i again wish to experience those very emotions which the book beautifully conveys.the film falls short of the book.jhumpa's attention to detail is incredible.

mumbai-based designer divya thakur was closely associated with mira nair in designing the credit titles for "the namesake". these have been done in a combination of english and bengali typefaces.she has used english and bengali typefaces together to be in sync with the main theme of jhumpa's book and nair's film.the search and struggle for an identitiy across borders.

i doff my hat to both jhumpa lahiri and mira nair. though i would increase the angle of inclination a bit more for jhumpa.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

names and namesakes-I

"what's in a name? that which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet."- "romeo and juliet" by william shakespeare.

juliet tells romeo montague that a name is an artificial and meaningless tradition. she loves romeo as a person and not his name or the family name. and romeo in his mad love over juliet rejects his family name and vows to deny his father and be baptized as juliet's lover. "romeo, doff thy name; and for that name which is no part of thee, take all myself."

looked at from juliet's perspective, a name has no meaning, no purpose. but is that really so? aren't keeping names when babies are born a wonderful convention? how would you otherwise call them, pet them and think about them? ever since men evolved language,they have been trying to give names to objects that they saw and experienced. as social consciousness progressed with the evolution of men, men were also named. how would you otherwise carry on the business of a cultured society? that is why our ancestors realized the importance of naming persons and laid a lot of importance on naming a newborn child. this was done through the medium of a religious ceremony.all religions lay special emphasis on giving names to babies. among hindus,the 'namakaran' ceremony is all about giving auspicious and befitting names to the newlyborn. "name is the primary means of social intercourse. it brings about merits and it is the root of fortune. from name man attains fame. therefore the naming ceremony is very praiseworthy." -"viramitrodaya samskara prakasha."

there are good names and calling names. as jhumpa lahiri would write in her fascinating book of fiction named "the namesake." good names(bhalo naam) are for the record so to say. while calling names(daak naam) are the pet names. either it is a shorter form of the good name or something unconnected with the good name. it is not restricted though to bengalis only. as jhumpa lahiri would probably have us believe. i know of punjabis and south indians too who have two names. a good name and a calling name. virindersingh is called vindi or harbacchan singh is called bacchi. a srinivasan can be called seenu or something quite different. among tamilians there is a practice to give a name associated with being small. say kutty. kutty means father was the eldest of three brothers.he was fondly called chellakutty(petchild). his two younger brothers were called payyakutty(a double emphasis on smallness) and chinnadhu(small).my grandmother lived to the age of 98. when she used to address my father when he was 82 as chellakutty, i couldn't but chuckle.

when i was born and had to be named there was a competition between my paternal and maternal grandfathers who were both very religious.the name had to be one of the names of lord vishnu. i was initially called karunakaran by my paternal grandfather(lord karunakaran ) while my maternal grandfather wanted me to be named rajagopalan(lord rajagopalan at mannargudi). for a couple of years i was called karun at home. then one fine day it got changed to gopal with the a and n dropped and raja too. perhaps it was the bengali influence as we were living in calcutta then. my wife too changed the spelling of her name and slightly modifed her name without completely departing from the name given to her. she did it because she was told by a reputed numerologist that such a change would do good for her in her personal and public life. it indeed did.

we named our daughter sulakshana (having beautiful or auspicious marks). and we also gave her the pet name lulu. she is now known more as lulu than sulakshana which is her official name.

when two persons have identical names one is referred to as the namesake of the other. nikolai gogol was a russian jhumpa lahiri's novel "the namesake", ashok ganguli and his wife ashima have to name their son before he is discharged from a hospital in boston.this task is normally left among hindus to parents and grandparents out of respect. having waited unsuccessfully for the name to come by post from ashima's grandmother,ashok has to quickly think of a suitable name . it didn't take him much time. after all his boyhood hero was nikolai gogol and didn't gogol's collection of short strories save ashok's life when the train in which he was travelling to jamshedpur to meet his blind grandfather jump off the track and meet with a terrible accident.he was the only one who survived out of the passengers in his bogie. even he would have been given up for dead but for the book "the turncoat" by nikolai gogol,the cover page of which he clutched to his hands for dear life. and which enabled the rescue team to spot him and pull him out of the wreckage. therefore, out of gratitude to gogol,he names his son after him.the young gogol ganguli becomes a namesake of gogol,the russian writer.gogol detests his name and when he gets an opportunity changes it to nikhil. when gogol tells his father that he wants to change his name, ashok fully aware that his son has become uncomfortable with his own name,tells him "go ahead,if you want to do can do anything in america." he then decides to explain to gogol the reason for the selection of his name.

actually gogol is a close approximation to "google". and gogol is a very 'googleable' name. in the us, parents want names for their children that will work well for web searches. "googleability" is the key. perhaps nikhil(gogol) of 'the namesake' would not have been so frustrated with his name had "google" existed then. and ashok would have been proud of giving such a name to his son instead of trying to explain the rationale to his unimpressed americanised son as to why he chose such a 'weird' and 'odd' name.

your name remains with you from the cradle to the grave. and may also live on beyond that. it plays a significant part in moulding the worldly behaviour of the individual.through it one builds an identity.

"yajnyavakya", he asked,"when this person goes,what does not depart from him?" "name", yajnyavakya replied, "for name is eternal, all the gods are eternal and he wins an eternal world". - 'Brihadaranyaka Upanishad'

(to be contd.)

Monday, May 21, 2007

kolkata welcomes blatter on a platter

he received a hero's welcome from the football-fanatic crowd of kolkata. he was welcomed on a platter. but then,sepp blatter brought some swiss butter but it was so bitter that sepp blatter added some fresh amul butter to make the bitter butter better.

after the cricket world cup debacle,some serious introspection was required. we seem to be giving undue importance as a nation to cricket at the cost of hockey,football,tennis and other sports. we adulate our socalled cricketing heroes but pay scant attention and give measly appreciation to the exploits of our footballers and hockeyplayers. after all wern't we at the pinnacle of the hockey world in the 50s and won gold medals in olympics? it was some welcome relief to see the president of fifa come over to kolkata, the citadel of football in india. the motivational exercise hopefully would be well worth it.

west bengal,kerala and goa are three of our states where football is extremely popular.when we grew up in kolkata we took a lot of interest in watching the football league matches and the annual ifa tournament.there was even an office league where my dad's company was on home, my eldest brother was a supporter of east bengal while my elder brother backed mohun bagan and i followed rajasthan's fortunes.the mohun bagan vs east bengal match was always an exciting match.once when east bengal lost to mohan bagan due to a last minute goal,my brother fainted in the stands.kolkata is the only city in the world where the stadiums are guarded by mounted police as spectator disruptions could erupt any moment.and those who were not able to find admission into the stadium would watch the match from outside with periscopes! it is a common sight to see baboos with their umbrellas leaving their worplaces around 4pm and heading towards the "maat"(football ground).

where do we stand in football? 165 is our world ranking,behind countries like togo,azerbaijan and ivory coast. even among asian teams we are ranked 34. sepp blatter referred to india as a "sleeping giant" in the world of football. he launched a project called "win in india with india" and also underlined a strategy for the development of this much neglected game. setting a time frame of four years,for improving the professional league,grassroots development,club competitions and then meeting fifa and afc requirements. blatter believes that development must begin from the bottom. just like building a level of players and improvements in facilities will have to top the agenda.blatter significantly pointed out that he was not interested in challenging cricket's supremacy but to champion the cause of is the fascination of the game that attracts people all over the world.will the sleeping giant wake up?

while at the mecca of football,he visited mohun bagan,east bengal and mohammedan sporting clubs for a few minutes each. and he later watched a mohun bagan vs east bengal match at salt lake stadium in the presence of about 70,000 cheering spectators. at mohmdn sporting club he told them that they were 116 years old and fifa was junior to them! his visit coincided with the bengali new year.he was overwhelmed by the enthusiasm of the people.he even found time to garland the statue of the legendary goshto pal.the 71 year old swiss said that he was prepared to help but "you should help yourself". a truth well said and bluntly put across to our officialdom. passion is not enough,he added.there will be no progress even in the next 100 years,if we don not go about it in the right way,he said.india has vast potentiality and it must be tapped.don't live on grants, he said. if your brother asks for a fish,don't give him one. instead teach him how to catch it.

blatter met prez abdul kalam and pm manmohan singh in delhi and found them eager to improve the standard of the game.he was impressed that though kalam is a scientist he showed interest in football. he has promised to distribute 10,000 footballs all over the country.traditional dhoti,punjabi and rosogolla followed him in all his felicitations.he was moved by the emotive and passionate kolkattans.but will the sleeping giant wake up? that is a million dollar question.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

unhappy happoos

this year has not been a particularly happy one for the world-famous alphonso mangoes. or for what are popularly called happoos in is mumbai's signature mango. firstly,the arrival was late. mid april. and secondly, prices were exorbitant.the first two dozens of happoos that i bought from my friend dasarath kale at crawford market was for rs 1200. when i enquired why the prices were so high,he explained that initially there were sudden showers resulting in damage to the crops. 'reliance' are making massive purchases for their retail outlets. the extended winter. and also that for the first time alphonso mangoes were being exported to the usa after a 17 year old ban.

quid pro quo,said the newspaper headlines.uncle sam wants to export harley davidsons to india for agreeing to import alphonsoes! some 150 boxes of alphonsoes and kesar mangoes were shipped end of last month after irradiation to reach the required hygiene levels and lot of quality is expected to be priced at 36$ per dozen in the americam market. but i haven't seen a new harley davidson yet on mumbai roads. the americans are complaining of high import duties. and that it is not a level playing field.

when my daughter was an undergrad student in usa many years ago,i was visiting her. i put about 20 mangoes in my unaccompanied baggage. these were the best that i had selected from our small fruit garden in goa.the customs official was friendly.when he asked me whether i was carrying any eatables,i jokingly said "no,only cherishables".we had a chat and before i knew what was happening the affable offcial had confiscated all the mangoes.i am sure they must have partaken of the small loot.the memory of that incident was quite uncherishable.

in end april/first week of may, there was some better availability of happoos. the prices had dropped only marginally though and that too temporarily.yesterday, when i bought two dozens of happoos, the prices had come down to rs 400. but the prices are likely to again move up north because it has been raining intermittently in the konkan coast affecting the plucking and despatch of the fruits. also due to the alternate year low crop syndrome, production of mango crop was severely affected.

there is good news for those who are netsavvy. alphonsoes are now just a click away.log on to this website was launched some six months back by a group of six mangogrowers. teleshopping networks and even the internet has been bitten by the mango bug. but then if you can't touch,feel and smell mangoes,how do you really buy them? firm and rounded mangoes with a slight depression around its stem.ideally golden yellow,sunkissed. and green patches are a no-no. these are some basic clues which enable you to purchase the right mangoes. when you buy fruits on the internet, you are not sure what you are likely to get.

whether it is alphonso or payari,rajapuri or shravani or kesar,the same rules apply. payari and rajapuri and shravani are the juice varieties.and from the north there are dussheri,langda and totapuri.these aromatic mangoes have thinner skin.uttar pradesh is the mango bowl of india and it produces the maximum volume and the maximum variety.amitabh bacchan would have been well advised to say "utttar pradesh mein sabze zyada aur pyaare aam hote hain" instead of his infamous one-liner,"uttar pradesh mein jurm(crime) saare desh mein subse kum hain". and from the southern farms you get bangannapalli,lalbaug,neelam and himapasand. ask a hyderabadi and he will swear by the bangannapalli.and a trichyite who knows nothing else but himapasand.

kesar has caught the attention of exporters this orchards near rajkot at talala are having many visitors from,bharti,tata and godrej are all there taking samples for obtaining quality approval from their foreign customers.some of these big names have already exported about 400 tonnes of kesar mangoes recently to japan and europe and the farmers from krishnagiri, tamil nadu have formed a consortium and are contributing rs 1000 each as equity to sell their pulpy mangoes under the brand name "krishmaa".management guru lalu yadav and our current railway minister is considering a coldchain express train to help farmers realise remunerative prices. whether he owns an orchard and has set sights on langda competing with alphonso in the national market is to be seen.

the annual mango festival,amba mahotsav was held in prabhadevi during the last week of april.nearly 150 farmers from konkan participated. mangoes were pricey and the aam janata had to make do with fewer mangoes. aam seems to be eluding the aam aadmi. a rather unhappy happoos season this year.i heard a vendor say,"happoos toh tayaar hai,lekin customers kahaan?".

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

the three unforgettable W's of cricket

i expected the talented west indies cricket team to spring a surprise and defeat the mighty australians in the world cup cricket tournament held during the last two months in west indies. perhaps, it was wishful thinking on my part. west indies crashed out earlier than many other teams. the charismatic brian lara could not work his magic. the once dominant team was felled in their homeground. many hearts were broken to see the eclipse of a great team rather early in the tournament.

they are a stylish and talented lot and are capable of huge scores which are required to win oneday matches. when the west indies cricket team came to kolkata in 1953 ,they created a record of sorts. on 1st April three of the teammembers scored centuries. they were everton weeks,frank worrell and clyde walcott. the three w's always struck terror in the hearts of the opposing team .I was reminded of this world record when I saw the pictures of these three great batsmen in the hindustan times when I was in kolkata last month.the world cup series was then in progress.

all the three were from barbados and born within a short distance of each other.everton weekes holds the world record of hitting five successive hundreds.he showed an admirable variety of strokes when he hit 194 at bombay in the 50's tour. he was knighted in 1955. clyde walcott was also a legend in his time.and frank worrell who was perhaps the best of the threesome was never forgotten by his folks from barbados for deserting this town and settling in jamaica both of them were also knighted.walcott was the best of the threesome.he was a good administrator too and also became the first non-white chairman of the international cricket council in 1993..weekes is alive,but worrell and walcott are gone. the three coalesced into one majestic unit when they played together.

Monday, May 07, 2007

the lure of the yellow metal

the festival of 'akshaya tritiya' is a very auspicious occasion.this year it fell on two days.on 19th april and 20th april.according to shastras,anything purchased on these days will bring in luck and success.and they will increase wonder that people consider this day to be the ideal day for purchase of gold.many marriages are also performed on this day.

akshaya means never diminishing in sanskrit.goddess lakshmi is invited on this day to homes and her blessings are sought for wealth and prosperity.this day falls on the third day of the new moon of baishak(april-may).as per hindu astrology the sun and moon are most radiant and placed in the best position on this day which is devoid of any negative influences.

according to legend,veda vyasa began compiling the 'mahabharatha' on this day. according to another legend the pandavas received the akshaya paatram from lord krishna on this day.this provided them with unlimited food duirng their exile in the forest. it is celebrated in different states of our country in different bengal, a ceremony called 'halkatha' is performed before starting a new book of the north it is known as 'akshay teej' and mass marriages are conducted on this day.for maharashtrians, 'akshay trittiya' is one of the most auspicious festivals. kairichi panhe(mango juice) and vatli dal are served on this day.

this month witnesses a major gold rush.welcome gold bangles,gold necklaces and gold all the way. you are guaranteed everlasting wealth and prosperity.i too fell for the lure of the yellow metal! also we had a 'baby shower' for l and h on this auspicious day.