15th Bird festival kicks off from February 2

The day is not far when state bird Godavan (Great Indian Busterd) would be seen only in books. In the absence of conservation and necessary policies, Godavan is becoming an endangered species.

This time 15th bird festival is dedicated to Godavan. Tourism and Wildlife Society Of India (TWSI) is organising this fest on 2nd and 3rd February at Mansagar Lake. The fest will include the discussion on Godavan and works related to its conservation.

Absence of grassland

Absence of grassland and healthy environment is the major reason behind the declined numbers of Godavan. According to Secretary of TWSI, Harshwardhan, Godavan lives in grassy areas and after regular development in the state, many grassy areas got extinct. Another reason is that their eggs get destroyed in the rest of grass fields due to the shepherds. Even today people hunt for Godavan.

Meeting held at Delhi

Earlier, two days meeting was held at Delhi in November 2011 to discuss reasons of decrease in the numbers of Godavan. Ministry of Environment and Forest, WWF, MNHS and WLII expressed their worry in the meeting. The draft was prepared in meeting, on the works to be done in this direction.

India has only 200

State                                 in year 1980                        Present
Rajasthan                           500                                       80-100
Andhra Pradesh                80-100                                35-40
Maharashtra                     60                                          20-25
Karnatka                            20-30                                   less than 20
Madhya Pradesh               30-35                                   less than 5
Gujrat                                 50                                         30




JIFF brings out US exploitation

Picture Afghanistan – A Look at Global Militarization’, ‘Fishing under Fire’ and ‘Gaza Freedom March’ were among 12 short and documentary films from the US film maker Iara Lee which were today screened in the Jaipur International Film Festival(JIFF) here to exhibit the way American government and security agencies were exploiting Afghanistan, Iraq and parts of Africa.

Likewise, film ‘Bahlol Dana’ highlighted the fact that there is no place for terrorism in Islam. Sixty films from India and abroad were screened in the festival on the third day today. The commencement of the day was with the Russian entry “First Time for Everything” that revolves around a 10 year old boy Koyla and his father, who accidentally meet for the first time and how they built unique relationship in a short span exploring true meaning of a blood relationship.


Some of the other films which drew crowds were Director Jayaraj’s ‘The Train’ from India, ‘Top Floor Left Wing’ from France/Luxembourg, and ‘Maritime Silk Road’ from Iran.  Some films from Rajasthan that were screened included Darna Zaroori Hai, Bauchaar, My Journey, Jungle mein Jallianwala, Out of Order, Animator and Dekha Andekhi.

At ‘The Merchant’ at the Chamber Bhawan eight films were exhibited. These included Bahlol Dana, Bird (Russia) and The End(from Rajasthan). Bahlol Dana is basically a true story of a sage that dates back 900 years and it tells about holiness of the sage who believes in solving the problems of everyone and spreads message of humanity and peace every where.

The film lauded the fact that there is no place for terrorism in Islam. Nearly 60per cent of film’s shooting took place on the outskirts of Jodhpur and Jaisalmer. On side-lines Australian filmmaker Andrew Vial taught some of the key lessons on script writing to participants and explained to them how to write effectively small stories.

In the afternoon, a seminar was conducted on ‘World Cinema and Regional Cinema at a place-Jaipur How and Why’ at which K C Malu, Suprana Sen, M D Soni and Marc Baschet spoke at a length.

The conclusion was that Jaipur is one of those major cities that have their own potential of providing best of the shooting locations exhibiting art, culture and traditions of the people living there and foreign filmmakers have a great opportunity to shoot best of the locations in Jaipur.
Marc Baschet held that it would be truly great if the regional cinema in India could make its mark in the world cinema.


Rajasthan University on its way to FAME !

Just after a month PM Manmohan Singh praised Rajasthan University’s contribution in research and other sectors, it seems that University is regaining its lost glory back. The Rajasthan University has been awarded the status of Universities with Potential for Excellence by the UGC.

The status will help university to gain in the field of research, teaching programmes and developing infrastructure through additional UGC grant. The status claimed that Rajjasthan University is among the best universities in North India. According to sources in UGC, only six universities were awarded this stature.

Among the 40 universities from across the country which applied for the status the other varsity included Guru Nanak Dev University in Amritsar, Mysore University, Banaras Hindu University and Karnataka University in Dharwad.


Jaipur International Film Festival 2012

The Jaipur International Film Festival, the world fastest growing film festival, is held every year now for 5 days from 27-31 January in Jaipur, India

Launched in January 2009, Jaipur International Film Festival -JIFF became expanding ‘n established name in organizing world film festival every year in Rajasthan’s pink city of Jaipur in India.

And now Jaipur is having an honor of organizing World’s Fabulous Red Carpet award ceremony on January 30, 2011.

The purpose of this film festival is to promote newer movie makers, exchange of knowledge, information, ideas & culture between India & other nations in context of their social and cultural ethos. JIFF also promotes friendship and co-operation among people of the world through the medium of films & documentaries.

Though the film festivals have became a regular affair in most countries yet most of them cater only to selected audience as well as entertain the commercially successful film makers and related personalities. However, JIFF intends to organize a festival that connects the film fans & movies goers with the world, especially the serious filmmaker & their associates so as to bring about greater understanding of the art of film making.

Veteran actress Jaya Bachchan, who was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Jaipur International Film Festival on Friday, said that there was a need to make archives to preserve the history of cinema at both national and international levels.


American chat queen Oprah Winfrey in conversation with Barkha Dutt # JLF-Day 3

Oprah Winfrey, the host of the award-winning The Oprah Winfrey Show entertained, enlightened and uplifted millions of viewers for 25 years.

Here comes the Talk Show Queen-Oprah Winfrey on the third day of Jaipur Literature Festival.


She looked rather affable in her green floral silk kurta/pant with pink dupatta ensemble.

Sanjoy Roy introduced the session – Oprah Winfrey in conversation with Barkha Dutt .

Barkha calls Oprah the most loved, influential person on TV. Lots of adoring inflated rhetoric. Oprah praised Barkha for doing her opening bit without teleprompter and appreciated her flattering introduction.

The crowd was listening to every word she uttered. Ranging, from life to work, culture, women, marriage, traffic, music and books everything was here in the conversation.

She was very much touched by the underlying Indian traditions. She said “People don’t talk religion inIndia, they live it”.

She gets the sense of how glorious it is that this is a country that has no respect for nursing homes (because children take care of their parents).  On that family note Oprah shared an incidence where she asked Abhishek Bachchan .”You live with your parents, what is it??” Abhishek replied “You guys don’t, we Indians take care of our family”

She satirically commented on the Indian traffic System by asking whether these lights are for entertainment purpose.  However, with the promise of coming back toIndiaagain, Oprah quoted, “when you are in the heart of India, it’s so big with so much of diversity. I feel so much enriched.” On that Barkha joked on giving her a job!

Oprah then spoke on the empowerment of women, specially widows and young girls by educating them. She emphasized on eradicating discrimination against widows. The way she de-stings that is by saying this is not justIndia. “Am sure it happens to women around the world as in upper class women get invited less to party when husband dies. As if death is contagious” Being brought up in such discrimination, Oprah gave voice to all the under privileged.  She raised the excitement in audience by saying “you have to speak for yourself, when you’re excellent, people notice. Always be the best even if you’re flipping fries at McDonald’s.”

Oprah Winfrey spoke about reading- Tony Morrison is her favorite author, Beloved is her favorite book and she is running her own book club inU.S.A.!

Oprah sounds more like a self-help guru than a talk show host. But what’s nice is about altruism as a path to happiness. Well, once she was told by Nelson Mandela to listen also, not just talk! (She is supposed to be lot chatty)

Oprah took over the show by asking the audience how can you text and drive in India when people don’t obey the red light. “Internet addiction is just like any other alcohol or drug addiction, it keeps you away from books”

Asked on her views on USA President, Oprah Said “Obama should remain in office as a President, his next 4 years would be even better”

Finally the question about marriage! Without which every celebrity session is incomplete inIndia.

To which she charmingly replied, “I have great respect for marriage and admiration for way women are being able to be married, arranged marriage and now we are in a love marriage…arrange marriage would be hard for me.”

“I am too old now for marriage?” NO screams crowd…….



Charismatic sessions at Jaipur Literature Festival- Day 2

If you have ever witnessed “bee swarming over honey” then it won’t be too difficult for you to draw similarity between them and masses pouring in at Diggi palace during the second day of Jaipur Literature Festival.

Today’s session started with Chetan Bhagat in conversation with John Elliot ‘In search of a Story’ inside Mughal Tent. His session in Mughal tent was a jam packed one with not just the youth congregating to listen but people from all the age groups flocked in! Radical changes in thought process were something he emphasized with a lot of zeal. He also remarked that Anna movement has created awareness about good values. In his words, “Freedom of expression leads to emancipation of human kind”. Over criticism on the standard of language of his books he said, “My books are used in tribal areas to teach English, drivers read my books to learn English to get a better job. If that is not literature I am happy not to be literate to ink literature.

Steven Pinker session ‘The better Angels of Our Nature: A decline of violence in History’ introduced by Barkha Dutt, accentuated the fact that violence is ebbing.

In this meanwhile, we caught Suhel Seth, the writer and the marketing guru enjoying Sula and ‘aloo ka paratha’ from a school kid’s lunch box! 🙂

Lyricist Gulzar’s session ‘Suno, Suno Ek Kahani’ was supposed to be held at the Rio Tinto Samwad area but because of the huge crowd venue was changed to Front Lawn yet the stampede to be a part of his oratorical journey was at its zenith.

Another session of ‘Love Stories’ was in conversation with Namita Gokhle, Pavan Verma, Prasoon Joshi and Gulzar. Some excerpts-

Sirf ehsaas hai yeh rooh se mehsoos karo, pyaar ko pyaar he rehne do koi naam na do “, ‎”Sabhi ne zindagi chulhe pe rakhi hai, na pakti hai na jalti hai‎” lines quoted by Gulzar Sahab and “Taar pe jhulte kapde mera pyaar hai, mera adhikaar hai ya ek dhaaga vivash ka” by Prasoon Joshi at “Love Stories” session were the phenomenal highlights of the day.

Few minutes after this session a book on ‘Hadauti- The unexplored Rajasthan’ was launched by Ms. Bina Kak, Minister of Tourism. Unfortunately the author Dharmendra Kanwar was not present on the occasion.

Many other prominent fellows were also seen at Jaipur Literature Festival

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Sunday at Diggi Palace seems even more happening with Oprah Winfrey, the most influential American, all set to lit up the “PINK CITY”



Events in Jaipur · Jaipur Beat · Jaipur Happenings

Scintillas from the Jaipur Literature Festival – Day One!

No Matter how bright today’s individual literary stars shone, luminous Diggi palace eclipsed them all. Clothed in vivid oranges, pinks and blues, glinting with Rajasthani mirror work, bedecked with little jewels of stalls, festooned in strings of light, and crossed and re-crossed by trails of fashionable, hippy and long booted beautiful people, its no surprise all the litterateurs were digging on Diggi.

The Diggi Place is meticulously divided into five venues: Durbar Hall, Mughal Tent, Baithak, Front Lawns & Samvad, all beautifully done up in different styles..

Thankfully our team was scheduled to attend few events in the Front Lawn and the Mughal Tent. But towards the end of the day as the crowd multiplied four folds, Jaipur Beat team was lucky even to be able to attend the sessions.

First we attended the “Khilli Battisi” poetry reading and interactions by Ashok Chakradhar moderated by Lata Sharma in Front Lawn. Ashok ji has revived the legacy of “32 lines “poem which was started by Late Hari Vansh Rai Bachchan. He glorified “Vachik Parampara” and beautifully drawn the connection between literature, love and progress of an individual in the session. He highlighted the fact about the literature festival that it was being held to get the languages closer. Moreover, he remarked that there are a few words which a language must accept from other language in its raw form. He got this point to audience attention by reciting a poem about “Global Warming” where if this word if translated in Hindi becomes Dhara Dhadhak, and Vishwa Vidaat which cannot be comprehended as easily as the word Global Warming. He joked at the prevalence of corruption in country by his poem, “Aayo kahan se dhanshyam”. On audience demand he also recited a few lines from his collection of “Jungle Gaatha”.

The first session of Mughal Tent saw Neeta Gupta (publisher at Yatra Books) introduce iconic poet, lyricist and film director Gulzar in conversation with writer and diplomat Pavan Varma. “Do Deewane Shahar Mein”. Gulzar Sahab’s read few of his selected poems in Hindi with Pavan Varma meticulously translating them to English.  Amidst a lot of mirth and laughter, we saw the Gulzar’s astounding creative thought process and Pavan Varma’s in depth understanding and precise interpretation, gathering appreciation and praise from the audience as well as Gulzar himself. Pavan Varma wittingly admitted “If the original is so brilliant, the copy can’t be that bad.” Hearing such rousing piece of work filled our hearts with gratitude and a lot more love and respect for our National language. Gulzar’s legendary and awe inspiring work undoubtedly makes him one of the most coveted and admired personalities of the country.  The Mughal Tent was house-full with fans and eager audience who sat smitten by Gulzar Sahab’s oration. Not to forget Hindi film director Vishal bharadwaj sitting in the audiance and the hundreds who did not mind standing outside the tent to hear him speak.

Girish Karnad, Kabir Bedi, Suhel Seth are few of the celebrities who can be seen moving around at JLF today. 

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It was also a day of drama at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2012 — the day began with the Inauguration ceremony and of course  in anticipation of whether Salman Rushdie would attend the event or not. By lunch time, we had word from the New York-based novelist that he would skip the Jaipur Literature Festival. And just as we were wrapping up for the day, word got around that authors were reading out passages from Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses, the novel which earned him a fatwa from Ayatollah Khomeini on Valentine’s Day in 1989 and has been banned in India for over 23 years.

The first day laid the foundation of the Jaipur Literature Festival. With such strong back-to-back events lined up, with prominent personalities of the literary world, we were eager to attend the line-up for the days to come. Stay updated with live coverage of Jaipur Literature Festival at http://www.facebook.com/jaipurbeat .


JLF: Special Vehicle for elderly and physically challenged

With last minute preparations going on at Diggi, the venue is beautified like a bride who is ready to unveil itself. For those who are looking forward to pay their visit to this grand show, might check the minor changes before they head.

Jaipur Literature Festival being called as the Mecca of Literature, or the literature hub, this time no doubt is much bigger. This time organisers have made some changes which include on-line registration as well as the change in the parking.Unlike every year one has to get registered first hand provide valid identity proofs.


A team of near about 50 volunteers as well as other members will make the registrations done. The registration will be done on the roads as well as the desk.


Special Vehicles available

Special cabs will be available to carry the elderly and physically challenged to the venue. Special vehicles will be available for the physically challenged and elderly people to take them inside Diggi Palace from the main road connecting the venue.


Parking Facility :

The parking facilities for the vehicles of delegates,authors,media persons and common visitor would be at Soochna Kendra,Maharani College,Maharaja College. No vehicle will be allowed to go inside.


Five-day DSC Jaipur Literature festival from January 20-24, 2012

Now is the time, come to the Pink City –Jaipur and be charmed by not just its heritage but the luminous literati from across the globe. Jaipur is soon going to buzz with literary enthusiasts as the city is going to host literature festival for the seventh time in sequence.

The largest literary carnival in Asia, the Jaipur Literature Festival is described as the “Greatest Literary Show on Earth”.

The event will take place in the beautiful heritage hotel Diggi Palace located right in the heart of the city of Jaipur.

This year the festival will focus on a range of thought-provoking topics including Bhakti and Sufi traditions, the Arab world’s shift to democracy, Gandhi and Anna Hazare, vegetarianism, censorship and other issues. Over 200 speakers will address the gathering. If you’re there in time, you might catch a glimpse of renowned author Michael Ondaatje, as well as American TV host, Oprah Winfrey. Some of the authors and speakers present at the festival this year include; Ben Okri, Chetan Bhagat, Chiki Sarkar, Chandrahas Choudhary, David Davidhar, Oprah Winfrey, Prasoon Joshi, Javed Akhtar, Peter Popham and many more.

Here you get chance to participate in big book launches amongst the who’s who from the world of litterateurs and mingle with them. To add a dash of rhythm to this fest there are live performances by notable musicians and yes, there are so many books to flip through and buy. The festival includes various readings, talks, debates, performances, children’s workshops and interactive sessions, on literary, social and political issues, including book signings by various authors.



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The Jaipur Literature festival is free and open to all though registration is required, so bring along your Photo ID.

A beautiful city that stands out for its stunning palaces, forts, rich culture, tradition and heritage, the Jaipur Literature Festival is another great reason to visit the beautiful Pink City!