Why Mumbai Love Monsoon : The Joyful First Showers!

Mumbai is a centre where many cultures co exist. It is a city of dreams, a city of Bollywood, a city of handsome actors and beautiful actresses. It is where people come to fulfill their long sought after dreams and desires. It is a sea of people travelling in local trains and eating Vada Pav by the roadsides.

Teenagers enjoying the rains at the seafront on Marine Drive, Mumbai

Teenagers enjoying the rains at the seafront on Marine Drive, Mumbai | Image Resource : livemint.com

But none of this beats the hot summers, cold winters and the refreshing rains. The monsoons are something every Mumbaikar wishes for until the moment they arrive. The rains bring much respite from the summer heat and humidity caused by the sea.

The rainy season is also an excellent time for the hawkers who sell umbrellas and rain coats by the road sides. The articles get sold out within minutes like hot cakes and the sellers make the best of the moment. It is also a very prosperous time for the roadside venders who sell tea, coffee and pakoras. Every person in Mumbai wishes for hot pakoras and tea after a shower.

Hawker who sell umbrellas by the road side in mumbai

Hawker who sell umbrellas by the road side in mumbai | Image Resource : rediff.com

Vender who sell tea, coffee on road at mumbai

Vender who sell tea, coffee on road at mumbai | Image Resource : chessbase.com

Visions of people wearing rain coats and gumboots and making the most of their articles in the wardrobe meant for the rainy season can be seen. The local Maharastrian working women wear their saris up while they sell their wares like flowers etc. Even the college students are busy buying their stock of water proof make up.

The people who have to travel in the public trains however get the downers because the tracks are filled with water and by the time they reach their work destination their clothes are ruined. But even they take a breath of relief when it showers because they have to face the worst of the heat too and they clearly prefer the wet rains over the sweaty summers.

Children returning back from schools in the evening rush home expecting piping hot Maggi to be served. All sorts of delicacies meant for the rainy season like boiled ground nuts and steamed corn are enjoyed by the people here. The Mumbaikars enjoy the little pleasures of life fully during the season.

Boiled Ground Nuts

Boiled Ground Nuts | Image Resource : tastyislandhawaii.com

Steamed corn with majoram butter

Steamed corn with majoram butter | Image Resource : herbcottage.com.au

Mangoes : The king Of fruits Making People Its Slaves By The Delicious Taste!

Mangoes have an important place in Indian culture, the fruit and the leaves of the mango tree are used as decoration in many Hindu festivals, public events such as speeches and at weddings. The mango is the national fruit of India and it has attained fame even in the bygone era as it is said that Emperor Akbar was so fond of the fruit that he planted an enormous mango orchard!

Mango King Of Fruits

Mango King Of Fruits | Image Reslurce : hdwallpapersfit.com

Mangoes have been my favorite amongst fruits. For me, summer in India often means gorging on mangoes till my face turns blue! Mango season generally begins in April and ends in June. The Sendhura mango, grown largely in South India is the first to arrive and is the perfect beginning.

Sendhura Mango

Sendhura Mango | Image Resource : thehindu.com

There are various other varieties of mangoes in India, Badami and Kallapadi are commonly found mango varieties. Badami has been called the Alphonso of Karnataka because of their similarity in tastes. Badami mangoes are best eaten in the beginning and middle of May. Dasheri is largely grown in the Northern parts of India. Malihabad in Uttar Pradesh is the largest producer of Dasheri mangoes in India.

Langra mangoes are originally from Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh. This variety can be found all year long. Banganapalli mangoes are favoured for their sweet smell and juicy insides. These are large and a light yellow colour, very popular in the southern Indian states.

Chandrakan is hugely popular in Kerala and this green mango is used in the making of several delicacies.

Chandrakan Mangoes

Chandrakan Mangoes | Image Resource : quiette.wordpress.com

Totapuri, Mallika and Neelam mangoes arrive later in the market. Totapuri is often eaten with a sprinkling of chilli powder and salt – a favorite street-food.  The Mallika mango is a cross between the Dasherri mango and the Neelam.

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Mangoes are the king of fruit and the Alphonso is the king of mangoes. Named after Portuguese nobleman Afonso de Albuquerque, it is often called ‘Hapus’ in Maharashtra and Gujarat. It is known as a superior variety because it is rich in sweetness and flavor.

Alphonso Mango

Alphonso Mango | Image Resource : novertur.com

With its large variety and delicious taste, it has made us its slaves and I have always found it  hard to resist from gorging on them!

Why The Dream City And Melting Pot Mumbai Is Just Awesome!

“Mumbai’s Infectious. Once you start living in Mumbai, working in Mumbai,
I don’t think you can live anywhere else.” – YASH CHOPRA

Mumbai is a city that opens its heart and stretches its arm to lovingly enfold all who step their foot into this dream city. The minute your feet touches ground, the electrifying essence of this city swirls you into its vortex and there is no coming out of it without loving it from the depth of your heart! Many people come from far and near to give wings to their dreams and aspirations and it is a fact that this city gives them fame, name and glory.

We Love Mumbai

We Love Mumbai | Image Resource : thebetterindia.com

It is a melting pot of all communities and the only strong religion that everyone pays heed to is money and therefore there is no communal hostility! A lot of opportunities are open to every sect of the society and the suburbs of Mumbai show us the real meaning of sharing and caring with a giant heart amidst poverty and hardships.

There may be a shortage of place or material possessions but the hearts of people are very large and always open making you wonderstruck by the sheer magnanimity. Therefore, as the veteran film director Yash Chopra says, this city is truly infectious and once anyone starts living in Mumbai, he definitely cannot live anywhere else!

“Why Mumbai is Just Awesome starts”Res

The local trains in Mumbai are a sight to behold and it’s the heart , soul and the lifeline of the city! You need not take a big strain to get in or get out of these trains as the crowd pushes you out and pulls you in within a second! Whatever said, these trains connect the city well and boast of carrying 7.2 million commuters daily.

Mumbai Locals

Mumbai Locals | Image Resource : insideiim.com

For those who are fashion conscious, Mumbai is the New York of India since this city changes the fashion statement of the whole country. The street-side shops sell all accessories for a very low price and you can get the latest dresses, shoes, bags, etc. without making a hole in your pocket.

The street food is the best in Mumbai and it gives a tough competition to the food chains like Mc Donald’s, and Pizza Huts! The mouth-watering Vada Pav, Pani Puris, bhel puris, pav bhajis, is something to die for! The street food shops satiates the hunger pangs of all craving stomachs irrespective of the time of the day as you can find them open even at the wee hours of the night! Just like a mother feeds her children , these street food shops feeds people at a very low cost and this dream city , Mumbai takes care of all the monetary needs of its people as there is work for everyone in its womb!

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Bhaskaracharya’s Law of Gravity : Discovered 1200 Years before Newton!

India is considered as a traditional country but the world is unaware of our contributions to this modern world. Our theories were used as a base for many concepts such as weather forecast, astronomy, astrology, aviation etc. India has developed some of the best mathematicians the world has ever seen. Many of these geniuses were not given credit for their work.

An exhibition was held to spread awareness on India’s rich scientific heritage. The exhibition coordinator, Ashish Manjramkar stated

 “Very few of us know that speed of light was known to Indians in Vedic period. A shloka says that the speed of light is 2202 yojana per half nimish.  Yojana is a unit of distance which equals to 9.06 miles and half a nimish (nimishardha) is one tenth of a second. The figure is very close to the modern measurement of speed of light.” – Article Res

When we talk about gravity, the first name that pops into our heart is “Sir Isaac Newton”. In school we all have been told the story of how Newton was inspired to formulate “The Universal Law of Gravitation” when an apple fell from a tree. The world believes that Newton was the first to discover the gravitational concepts. You will be surprised to known that the theory of gravitation was created 1200 years before Newton by an Indian Mathematician Bhaskaracharya.  Before discussing Bhaskaracharya’s contribution let us understand the basic concept of gravity.

Gravity is a universal force that allows a mass of body to attract other masses of body. The bigger a mass of body is, the higher will be the force of gravity.

Importance of Gravity:

Objects stay on earth because of the gravitational pull. Every single body in the universe is affected by gravitational forces which also include the earth, sun and the moon. Tidal waves are created by the gravitational pull of the moon. Sun’s gravitational pull keeps all the planets in the orbit. Earth’s gravity allows it to revolve around the sun.

Now that you have understood the meaning of Gravitation, let’s get back to the work of Bhaskaracharya.

Who was Bhaskaracharya ?

Bhaskaracharya

Bhaskaracharya | Image Resource : searchoflife.com

He was one of the most prominent astronomers and mathematicians of the 12th century. He is also considered as the greatest mathematician from the medieval era. He is known amongst the theorist for discovering principles on astronomy and calculus.

He wrote “Siddhānta Śiromaṇī” at the age of 36 in 1150 AD. He also contributed to “Surya Siddhanta” that was originally written by Aryabhatta.

The first principle of gravity was stated by “Bhaskaracharya” and “not Newton”

Bhaskaracharya stated the laws of gravity in the book Surya Siddhanta in 11th century. Thus the law actually exists even before the birth of Sir Isaac Newton (Newton was born in the 16th century).

Surya Siddhanta & Siddhānta Shiromani

Surya Siddhanta & Siddhānta Shiromani | Image Resource : quazoo.com

Here are some of the slokas from his book Surya Siddhanta that mentions how gravitation works :

“madhye samantandasya bhugolo vyomni tisthati
bibhranah paramam saktim brahmano dharanatmikam”
[Surya Sidhantha 12th chapter 32 sloka]

This means: The spherical earth stands at the centre of earth in space due to the dharanatmikam sakti which prevents earth from falling away and helps it to stand firm.

“akrsta saktisca mahi taya yat svastham guru svabhimukham svasaktya
akrsyate tatpatativa bhati same samantat kva patatviyam khe”
[Sidhanta Shiromani, Bhuvanakosa, 6th sloka]

This means: Every object falls on the ground due to earth’s force of attraction. This force allows the sun, earth, moon and constellations to stay in the orbit. – Article Res

Bhaskaracharya wrote a treatise name Lilavati where he answers a question posed by his little daughter. In this book, he answers his daughter Lilavati’s curious questions.

In this book, he explains that earth has gravitational force (gurutvakarshan shakti). There is a mutual attraction between the planets and this allows them to hold themselves firmly in space.

Bhaskaracharya's Law Of Gravity

Bhaskaracharya’s Law Of Gravity | Image Resource : flickr.com

He also mentioned the shape of the earth while answering his daughter’s question. Bhaskaracharya states that what we see is not the reality, Earth may appear flat but it is spherical in reality.

He further explains this theory by stating

“if you draw a very big circle and look at one fourth of its circumference, you see it as a straight line. But in true sense it is a circle. Similarly earth is spherical in shape.” – Res

This historical mentions are the proofs that laws of gravity was first discovered in India by Bhaskaracharya.  His laws predates the law of Newton, he did not wait for the apple to fall.  Everybody knows about Newton’s law of Gravity but we don’t have any idea about “Bhaskaracharya’s Law of Gravity”.

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The Untold Story of Shivkar Talpade – A Man Who Created World’s First Fully Controlled And Powered Airplane.

The 20th century is considered as a golden era for humankind. Our world have changed drastically during this time. There have been countless inventions and discoveries that affected our way of living. One such achievement for mankind is the invention of flight.

Aviation has connected the world and helped us achieve the impossible by collaborating with each other. When asked who invented flight? most of the people have a straight answer i.e. The Wright brothers. Well, this is a misconception.

How Mythologies Encouraged Aviation !

The concepts and theories for creating the perfect flying machine was already been developed by many inventors across world even before Wright brothers. Man’s desire to fly was fueled by many legends and mythological stories. Many inventors believed that these were not just stories and these concepts had practically scientific implementations.

Some of the most interesting legends of man trying to flying were :

  • The Greek legend of Daedalus and Icarus
  • The British Legend of King Bladud
  • The Chinese legend of Wang Mang
  • The Indian Legend of  Vimanas

Most of the people around the world considered Wright brothers as the inventors of flight. In reality the first flight was created by a John Stringfellow in 1848 however the most detailed design that visualizes the concept of aviation was developed by an Indian in 1895.

An Indian Who Design Airplane Before Wright Brothers

Shivkar-Bapuji-Talpade

Shivkar Bapuji Talpade | Image Res : bringchange.in

Shivkar Bapuji Talpade was a sanskrit scholar from India. He was quite fascinated by the aeronautical Science also known as Vaimanika Sastra in sanskrit. He lived in Mumbai at Dukkarwadi, Chira Bazaar. He created this incredible aircraft under the guidance of Pandit Subbaraya Shastry who was also the author of Vaimanika Shastra. He named his aircraft as Marutsakha.

“Shivkar Bapuji Talpade (1864–1916) and Subbarāya Shāstry were two Indian scientists  who, constructed and flown India’s first unmanned airplane in the year 1895 to a height of 1500 feet. According to aviation historians Mr Talpade used his knowledge of the(Vaimānika Shāstra) to build a plane.”

– Read Quote of Prabhat Prakash Verma’s answer to What trivia (and/or little-known facts) do you find interesting about India?

Credibility of Marutsakha

Historian Evan Koshtka has stated that Talpade was the “first creator of an aircraft”. A news article published by Kesari covered the entire event when Marutsakha flew 1500 feet. The article was believed to be personally authorized by none other than Lokmanya Tilak. The event was witnessed by a huge crowd which included important personalities such as Mahadev Govind Ranade and Sayajirao Gaekwad, The Maharaja of Baroda.

The Science Behind Marutsakha

During that era, experts discarded the concepts and designs developed by Talpade because most of his designs were inspired by mythological legends from the vedas.

some-ancient-airplane-designs

Airplane sketches designed by Shivkar Bapuji Talpade | Image Res : nectorthemes.com

Today, scholars across the world have recognized vedas as a source of scientific knowledge. Veda mentions the existence of flying objects like Vimanas. H Childress and Berlitz in their book “the anti-gravity handbook” mentioned the significance of Vaimanika Shastra.

NASA is currently developing “Mercury vortex engine” with an intention to design an aircraft that can be power by the sun (solar energy). Vaimanika Shastra mentions a similar technology with reference to the vedic scriptures from Samarangana Sutradhara.

Why Talpade was denied the fame or respect he deserved?

Along with the finance offered by Maharaja Sayaji Rao Gaekwad of Baroda, Talpade start constructing Marutsakha.

london-times-mentioned-talpade-contribution

London times mentioned Talpade’s contribution in the aviation sector | Image Res : vaimanika.com/V1.001/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/london-times-talpade-Copyright.jpg

According to the newspaper records from that time, Marutsakha flew 1500 feet  and crushed. Talpade didn’t considered it as a failure, he want to upgrade the design and was quite sure that he could fly Marutsakha again. However, the Britishers was very unhappy about Talpade’s expedition in the aviation sector. The British authorities ordered  Maharaja of Baroda not to provide finance for Talpade’s research.

To continue his work Talpade took loans from his relatives. Due his wife’s illness, he found it to be very difficult to carry on his research with his limited income. He was in debt and the relatives who loaned him money acquired the remains and documentation of Marutsaktha and sold to Rally Brothers for a good amount of money. It is also said that Rally brothers promised Talpade that they would finance his project if he submitted his research specification to them. It is also believed that  Wright brothers bought this designs from Rally brothers and incorporated it in their designs. Still Wright brother’s prototype was only able fly up to 120 feet whereas Marutsakha flew up to 1500 feet.

Where the world appreciated and celebrated the achievements of Wright brothers and Stringfellow; Talpade was ignored by the authorities. Talpade was as good as any inventor of that era but could not survive the restrictions laid upon by his haters. It is unfortunate that the Talpade still remains unhonored for his contributions. Nobody knows about this great Maharashtrian who once dreamt of flying across the world.

In this video, Rajiv Dixit was an Indian social activist talks about the significance and existence of Marutsakha.

While researching on this topic, I found this Facebook post by Bijay Upadhyay. If you are interested about the ancient art of aviation, I would recommend you check out this post. Mr. Upadhyay has accurately listed out these references from Indian scriptures that indicates the existence of science of aviation in the ancient era.

A Petition to Indian Department of Education

Here is an online petition created by a Marutsakha supporter. It is a petition to include Shivkar Bapuji Talpade work in our school syllabus. I would request all my readers to participate and lend their support to this noble cause.

Courtesy :