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Delhi Assembly to get a dose of patriotism on Republic Day

“We have not talked anything about money. If they give us something, we will take it. We do not do it for money,” “We just want people to remember the martyrs.”

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Delhi Legislative Assembly

On a January afternoon, O.P. Sharma, 62, and two others were busy nailing a framed painting of a young man with twirled moustache on a white wall, which forms one side of the long corridor that runs along the Delhi Assembly building. It was a portrait of Shaheed Bhagat Singh.

Along with Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, Tipu Sultan and Rani Chennamma are among the 70 famous freedom movement leaders and historical personalities whose portraits — one for each Delhi Assembly constituency — are set to adorn the Assembly walls. These will be inaugurated on January 26.

Each portrait, one-and-a-half feet wide and two-and-a-half feet long and framed in black, are of martyrs who fought for the country from 1760 to 1947.

Guru Darshan Singh Binkal, the artist behind the paintings, told IANS that for the past 27 years he has been painting portraits of martyrs for one reason: “Martyrs should live on.

“I have been painting many martyrs who are unknown to most people,” said the 52-year-old, who uses oil colours and canvas as his medium.

Binkal said he takes around three days to complete one portrait, but he does not take money for it, except for what is needed to buy colours and canvas.

“I do other work to earn a living,” said Binkal, who has been painting since his school days.

Sharma and Binkal belong to the Shaheed Smriti Chetna Samiti, an organisation working to spread awareness about martyrs who gave their lives for the country’s freedom.

“We have only one goal — to instil patriotism in the minds of people,” Prem Kumar Shukla, General Secretary of the organisation, told IANS.

At a corner of SSCS’ office, about 30 km from the Assembly and up a narrow staircase, was a metre-long metal box.

One of the helpers opened the box to reveal dozens of other paintings, many of which were of lesser-known freedom fighters.

“People are forgetting the freedom fighters and their sacrifice. They only know the fake heroes,” Shukla said.

He said that children should know about them so that they will be “inspired to do something like that for the nation”.

The organisation, started by retired schoolteacher Ravi Chandra Gupta in 1997, conducts exhibitions of paintings of martyrs across the country.

“Even the Indian government does not have as much data as we have on martyrs,” Shukla said.

He said that through exhibitions and other means, they have reached about 10 million people across the country.

At the Assembly, Sharma and others were busy with their work again: Under each portrait, a short biography of the martyr was being nailed to the wall.

“We have not talked anything about money. If they give us something, we will take it. We do not do it for money,” Sharma said about their work at the Assembly. “We just want people to remember the martyrs.”

By : Nikhil M. Babu

(Nikhil M. Babu can be reached at [email protected] )

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Hotel industry’s recovery to pre-Covid levels profits 3 yrs away: ICRA

“This will keep revenues moderated, resulting in operating losses and stretched debt metrics during FY2021 and FY2022.”

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Park Hotel Delhi

New Delhi, Oct 24 : The Indian hotel industry’s recovery to pre-Covid levels profits is at least three years away, ratings agency ICRA has said.

The ratings agency said that road ahead for the industry is rough as revenues and margins are expected to post record decline in FY21 with losses mounting over the next two years.

The hotel industry has witnessed one of the worst revenue declines, in Q1FY21, with revenues for the industry sample declining by 85 per cent.

“Given the high operating and financial leverage in the industry, the revenue decline led to huge operating and net losses in Q1 FY2021 despite the extensive cost-cutting measures adopted by most entities in the industry,” ICRA said in a statement.

“Despite sharp weakening in interest coverage, recourse to the RBI provided moratorium on debt servicing as part of its Covid relief package announced in March 2020 supported the industry.”

As per the statement, about 66 per cent of ICRA’s hospitality portfolio applied for moratorium under this scheme and several of these will apply for restructuring under the K.V. Kamath committee too.

“Although hotels have been gradually allowed to reopen, occupancies have remained subdued in H1FY2021,” the statement said.

“This will keep revenues moderated, resulting in operating losses and stretched debt metrics during FY2021 and FY2022.”

The industry has reported a 2.7 per cent de-growth in topline with flat operating margins at 22 per cent in FY2020.

“With an 85 per cent YoY decline witnessed in revenues in Q1 FY2021 and subdued occupancies witnessed in Q2 FY2021 as well, industry wide revenues are expected to witness sharp de-growth of 60-65 per cent for FY2021,” ICRA said.

“Despite several measures taken by the companies to variabilise the fixed costs, the industry is likely to report massive operating and net losses in FY2021.”

–IANS

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31% adolescents battled extreme anxiety in past few months due to COVID-19, says survey

About 31% surveyed adolescents battled extreme anxiety in the past few months worrying about the impact of coronavirus pandemic on their family’s financial status, according to a survey

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work-load office tension stress

About 31 percent surveyed adolescents battled extreme anxiety in the past few months worrying about the impact of coronavirus pandemic on their family’s financial status, according to a survey of over 7,300 adolescents from four states of Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Bihar and Odisha.

The survey on ‘What do the Adolescents have to say? COVID-19 and its Impact’ by NGO Centre for Catalysing Change was conducted in two rounds in the months of April, July and August.

Out of the 7,324 adolescents surveyed, 31 percent admitted to battling extreme anxiety worrying about the pandemic’s impact on their family’s financial status.

The survey also found that adolescent girls faced significant gender discrimination in these months due to the pandemic.

“Only 12 percent of surveyed adolescent girls had access to their own mobile phones to be able to attend online classes, while 35 percent boys had access to their own mobile phones,” the survey found.

“Further, 51 percent of the adolescent girls surveyed lacked access to essential textbooks in comparison to boys, highlighting how the pandemic had jeopardized girls’ access to education,” it said.

About 39 percent of the girls were found to be contributing to housework as opposed to the number of boys at 35 percent, it said.

Under the survey, the adolescent girls also stated how their mobility has been curbed, with only 39 percent girls saying they were allowed to go out alone in comparison to 62 percent boys of the same age who were allowed to go out alone.

“At the same time, only 36 percent adolescents knew the correct helpline numbers, while awareness about the use of the helplines was even lower. Only 18 percent was aware that the helplines could be used in reporting domestic violence and only 22-23 percent knew that it could be used in reporting child labour and child trafficking cases,” it added.

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Sahir Ludhianvi death anniversary: Top Bollywood songs penned by the legendary poet

On Sahir Ludhianvi’s death anniversary, here’s looking at top Bollywood songs written by the legendary poet!

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Sahir Ludhianvi

Born in Ludhiana, Punjab, in 1921, Sahir began writing since childhood. Born as Abdul Hayee, he found the word ‘Sahir’ while reading Iqbal’s poetry and decided to use it as his pen name.

Sahir’s poetry was remarkably concerned with socio-economic and political problems of the country. He often voiced problems of the downtrodden with his words.

Sahir’s debut as film lyricist was with Azadi Ki Rah Par and Baazi. In recognition of his contributions, he was honoured with Padma Bhushan. Sahir died in Mumbai on October 25, 1980.

On Sahir Ludhianvi’s death anniversary, here’s looking at top Bollywood songs written by the legendary poet.

Dekha hai zindagi ko kuch itna kareeb se

Main Pal Do Pal Ka Shayar hu

Kabhi Kabhi Mere DIl Mein

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