The Sivagiri Pilgrimage will also include various other programmes including the centenary celebrations of ‘Daiva Dasakam’, a prayer penned by Sree Narayana Guru, the 150th birth anniversary of social reformer Dr. Palpu and conference on women among others.
The pilgrimage, which will have 10 conferences on different subjects will be attended by various political leaders and eminent personalities from all walks of lives including Overseas Indian Affairs Minister Vayalar Ravi, Goa Transport Minister Ramkrishna Sudin Dhavalikar and writer M K Sanu among many others. Another highlight of the function will be a health and de-addiction conference, which will be inaugurated by Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairperson P J Kurien.
A ‘Narayana Global Meet’ will be held on the third day on January 1, which will be inaugurated by Mizoram Governor Vakkom Purushothaman. Some of the other star attractions of the event include Sri Narayana Divya Satsang from December 25 to 29 and various cultural programmes. Live webcast of the events will be made available on www.sivagirimutt.org.
International Agency for Research on Cancer of World Health Organization has cited air pollution as one of the major causes for cancer. Air pollution has been categorized in group I Carcinogenic category under which tobacco, UV radiation and plutonium are also included.
Though air pollution was was considered as a risk factor for heart and lung diseases, recent studies show that it is being carcinogenic, which can cause lung and bladder cancer.
Air pollution causes 1.3 million deaths every year globally and quarter of these deaths are due to lung cancer.
It is estimated that in every minute, 3 Indians suffer a stroke and in a day around 3000-4000 Indian become stroke victims. Survey findings suggest that around 1.5 million Indians suffer stroke every year and it is a matter of concern that younger people are more at risk.
Even in metro cities, more than half of the population is not aware of the risks of strokes and how it affects brain. Unlike the common notion, stroke is not related to the heart. It occurs when a blood vessel that carries blood and oxygen to the brain gets blocked or ruptured, thereby starving the brain cells of blood.
All over the world, 20 million people suffer from stroke each year out of which five million die and five million become disabled. Studies show that strokes kill more than those caused by TB, HIV and Malaria put together.
A 1-litre bottle of mineral water that will be processed from the Department’s water plant at open prison at Nettulkaltheri from 2014 will cost only Rs. 10. The plant will make use of the water from the two dams of Nettukaltheri and Thevancode, inside the open prison compound. The dams together have a capacity of 4 crore litres of water.
The department is also planning to set up at Central Prison in Viyyur and market medicinal water also at Rs. 10 a litre, with effect from January 2014. Medicinal water will be made from the plants at the medicinal garden in Viyyur prison spreading over 10 acres. Oushadi, government-owned Ayurvedic medicine manufacturing company, and Small Industries Development Corporation (Sidco) are offering technical support for the medicinal and mineral water projects respectively.
In most cities in Kerala there is a dearth of potable water and a huge demand for safe drinking water in the bottled form. Considering the fact that a litre of milk costs Rs. 25 while it costs Rs. 30 for water, the bottled water will be a boon to the city folks. The medicinal water will also contain various ingredients that are effective in preventing various life style diseases as well.
It is a matter of pride for every Keralite that the laudable act of the jail authorities in channelizing the energy of the prison inmates into creative activities will be a model for other states as well.
Thanks to smart card. You can now bid adieu to the nightmare of the high pitched yelling and scary stares of the bus conductors against you for not extending the correct change in city buses in Kerala. Most of the conductors hesitate to give back the change to commuters , which often lead to heated arguments and even fist fights. The smart card swipe option to travel in city buses would relieve the passengers from the hassles of always carrying change.
The success of the city on wheels project has prompted the district administration to extend the project to all private buses in future. This would make Ernakulam the first district , to issue tickets in all private buses by way of smart cards. At present 100 buses have been brought under this scheme in various routes like Vytila-vytila, Kakkanad, Aluva, Eroor, Tripunithura and Poothotta .
The inspiration for the city on wheels idea was the overwhelming success of the survey conducted by Technovia infosolutions , Kochi. The survey highlighted the problem faced by the passengers owing to the reluctance of the conductors to return the balance amount of the ticket fare. If the smart card concept becomes popular , we can hope that the city travel will become a much more enjoyable and hassle free affair for the passengers.
Water bus, the new boat service in the Vyttila-Kakkanad sector was inaugurated a couple of days back by the Union Minister K V Thomas. Water Bus, operated by the Kerala State Water Transport Department, set off on its maiden trip from the newly built jetty near the Vytilla Mobility Hub. The boat has the capacity to carry 8 bikes and 50 passengers.
The service will be a boon for those who work in Kakkanad /Infopark as the timings are fixed in such a way that it suits the office goers. The boat will reach the jetty, near InfoPark, in 30 minutes whereas the buses take around 45 minutes.The fare from Vyttila-Kakkanad trip is fixed at Rs. 8 and there will be seven daily services, the first in the morning being at 9.30 am.
The boat service is expected to take off a considerable load from the choked roads leading to Kakkanad. Boat service is way cheaper and faster alternative to the crowded buses that ply in this route. “Proper boat jetties with ample parking space must be built on the way to Kakkanad. SWTD must also recruit 15 crew members to man the sister vessel that is ready to operate in hub-Kakkanad sector,” said Benny Behanan, MLA.
“Our aim is to introduce catamaran-type fibre-reinforced-plastic boats, which are delivered within a few months of the order being placed. Being lighter and faster than steel boats, they can cover the Vyttila-Kakkanad distance in 12 minutes,” Elias George, MD of KMRL and Chairman of Unified Metropolitan Transport Authority (UMTA). said.
Inland navigation, which can make travelling within Kerala a lot more faster and congestion free holds a tremendous potential and Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) has drawn up a Rs 40-crore project for the purpose. There are many viable water routes that can be explored and developed like for instance the Kollam-Kottapuram National Waterway III can make a potential cargo transportation route whereas a boat service from Poothotta to Cochin city will go a long way in decongesting the city during peak morning hours as buses take around 90 minutes to cover a distance of just 22 Km due to the pitiable condition of the roads and traffic bottle necks!
Photo Courtesy: RouteCochin.com
Better known as papanasam beach,Varkala beach is the only one of its type in southern Kerala that has rocky cliffs jutting right into the sea, which makes it dramatically beautiful. The bright hued sand and the ancient Janardanaswamy temple nearby adds up to the charm of this quiet and isolated sandy beach .
The online travel meta search engine of Trivago says that Varkala is one among the five affordable Indian tourist destinations and is in the 28th position in the world list of tourist destinations that can visited on a budget. Munnar is the other destination in Kerala that occupies the 60th position in the chart. The other Indian destinations include Nashik at the 21st position, Jaisalmer in Rajasthan at 41st and Alibaug in Maharashtra at the 56th position.
The ‘Best Value Index’ is calculated based on various factors including the yearly average overnight price of a standard double room and overall hotel reputation from over 82 million traveller reviews. The spots thus chosen will be world’s best in terms of delivering the best value for your money.
Nashik, which tops the list of affordable Indian destinations this year offers a night’s stay at Rs 5,665.
Morocco’s Ait Benhaddou was voted as the first among the top 100 ‘Best Value Index’ destinations in the world where an overnight stay in a standard double room in the city can cost a visitor an average Rs 3,551.
The price-comparison website of Trivago has a monthly user base of 18 million people over its 30 international platforms. The index has been compiled according to the reviews and preferences of the users of the search engine.
Varkala beach, located between Alappuzha and Kovalam in a photographer’s delight as it offers the most spectacular sunsets at the backtrop of the towering rocky cliffs and swaying palm trees.
So in case you are planning a memorable holiday experience that wont leave a hole in your wallet, then head straight to Varkala. Apart from a beach holiday it will also offer you the best of ayurveda and spiritual experience.
The prince and his entourage enjoyed the heavy downpower from deep inside the forests and the beauty of the bountiful waterfalls in Vazhachal.
Later he met the tribals who live in the periphery of the tropical forests and enquired about their food habits and mode of living.
The Prince spent around 40 minutes in the elephant corridor and was curious to know about the unique flora and fauna of the region. He also spared time to interact with the forest range officials and other senior officials of Wildlife Trust of India and other forest conservation organizations.
The authorities also introduced snake charmer Vava Suresh to the prince, who has the rare distinction of capturing over 250000 snakes till date including king cobra with bare hands and releasing them to the wild. Elephant lover Thadikannan, traditional botanist Mari and wildlife expert S Guruvayurappan also met prince Charles.
The villagers of teh otherwise sleepy villages near vazhachal accorded a rousing reception to the visiting Prince in a traditional style when his convoy passed through the area.
Image courtesy : Mail Online
Kerala has been rated as one of the 10 best travel destinations for family for 2014. Lonely Planet, the world’s largest travel guide book publisher gave this prestigious award to Kerala at World Travel Mart in London, attended by representatives from the tourism industry from all over the world .
Kerala was put in fourth position among the top 10 overseas family destinations by Lonely Planet while the first three positions were bagged by Denmark, Thailand and Belize. The other child-friendly destinations in this prestigious league include New York City, Hawaii, Prague, Italy and Iceland.
The World Travel Mart that was held from 4-7 November 2013 attracted a huge crowd of visitors and delegates. Some of the dignitaries who visited the WTM Kerala pavilion that had been themed on the Ayurveda included Jonty Rhodes, the former South African international cricket player and brand ambassador for South African Tourism.
“The intensity of travel in India could put you off taking a trip here with family, but Kerala is a family-friendly version, more laid back than other regions, greener, slower paced. There are also lots of national parks for elephant spotting, palm fringed beaches and boat trips along the lush canals of the backwaters,” The Lonely Planet said.
The award function which was held in London has a special significance for Kerala considering the fact that Britain is one of the most important markets for Kerala tourism industry, Kerala had recorded a footfall of over 1.5 lakh tourists from Britain last year.
The coveted award was received from the Lonely plant by the Kerala Tourism director S. Harikishore. “With the British economy registering the fastest growth in the last three years in the previous quarter, the mood at the World Travel Mart hosted by London was upbeat” opined Harikishore.
The Kerala delegation included 12 co-exhibitors from the hospitality segment of the state. The annual event of the WTM, London is feted as one of the premium most travel and tourism events in the world. Over 5,000 exhibitors from 184 countries and different regions attended this year’s WTM.