Tag Archives: gujarat

Gondal – a model town

Last weekend, I visited Gondal, a famous town of Saurashtra, Gujarat. The town is located appx. 100 kilometers away from Rajkot.

Although, Gondal is having a status of town with few statistical parameters like population, infrastructure, etc. following are remarks about the town.

  • Town planning has been good since the time of Bhagawadsinhji. The roads have more than required – good enough margins and well maintained footh paths in almost every street.
  • The town is peaceful.
  • Town is rich with good institutes in variety of subjects
  • The very well famous, encyclopedia of Gujarati language – Bhagwadgomandal, had been developed by King Bhagwadsinhji. That was not a small project in any sense – collection, quality, authenticity. It is a de facto standard encyclopedia of present time, without any modification
  • The Gondal kings were fond of cars, the followers have also preserved cars in well manner. [See my photos of this visit]

Here are the photos of the visit. The photos include antic car collection too!

* Bhagwadgomandal digital downloadable edition has also been launched on 1st May, 2009.

Wake Up call for Indian Consumers

CERC has started consumer grievance helpline – 1800-233-0222. This helpline is toll free for BSNL Gujarat users.

This is really a welcome step by CERC in association with Consumer Affairs, Government of Gujarat. This helpline is available from 10.30 AM to 5.30 PM as per IST. (GMT +530)

CERC is very reputed non profit NGO serving and solving sonsumer complaints / grievance for its members. Its membership detail is here. You can become member by paying online instead.

To add few lines about the organisation’s prestigeous standing I can summarise few of my experiences:

  • When Vodafone Essar was Hutch, in undisclosed billed amount about Rs.500 for my postpaid mobile connection, I requested for justification and company ignored. I stopped using mobile services by paying genuine amount along with accounting statement which was genuine. Later, the company sent a legal notice that drove me to CERC. I have been member since then. CERC did some correspondance on my behalf. Company failed to respond and that proved the legal notice was no more legally valid or important!

  • HP refused to replace damaged front panel, damaged due to its design defect. Legally and as per company’s terms it is possible to replace such parts under cosmetic damaged parts category. Again, approaching CERC solved, front panel get replaced without any legal procedure.

  • In the matter of unsolicited call from ICICI Bank, I did some correspondence with bank and just by sending copy of the same to CERC taught the bank. The bank sent letter of forgiveness through courier!

Some points about CERC:

  • Complaint department listens and guides to complaint very genuinly. Consumer can feel free to express whatever his / her experience is / was.

  • Complaint department has very systemetic approach from receiving and registering complaints from its members to dealing with associated parties / business houses.

  • Genuine complaint can be registered through email to CERC as well. CERC’s method for dealing with non local complaint is really appreciative.

  • Insight, a bimonthly magazine from CERC is really worth to read. It is a leading publication in India for consumer awareness.

  • One membership serves complaint registered by his / her family members. (of course, not a joint family! :P)

  • Membership fees are normal or perhaps nominal for the kind of activities CERC does.

  • Most importantly, an Indian can be a member, get free Insight magazine and register for grievance too.

  • Different consumer product surveys carried & published by CERC are added advantage for consumers.

I highly recommend to become member of CERC, to boost its activities, to have Insight knowledge of consumer laws and if required to solve your complaints being a consumer.

Funny story behind valentine's day!

Here we go…

In spite of what you have been told by everyone, the truth is that Valentine’s Day originated hundreds of years ago, in India, and to top it all, in Gujarat !!

It is a well known fact that Gujarati men, specially the Patels, continually mistreat and disrespect their wives (Patelianis). One fine day, it happened to be the 14th day of February, one brave Pateliani, having had enough “torture” by her husband, finally chose to rebel by beating him up with a Velan (rolling pin).

Yes….the same Velan which she used daily, to make chapattis for him….only this time, instead of the dough, it was the husband who was flattened.

This was a momentous occasion for all Gujarati women and a revolt soon spread, like wild fire, with thousands of housewives beating up their husbands with the Velan.

There was an outburst of moaning “chapatti-ed” husbands all over Anand and Amdavad. The Patel men-folk quickly learnt their lesson and started to behave more respectfully with their Patelianis.

Thereafter, on 14th February, every year, the womenfolk of Gujarat would beat up their husbands, to commemorate that eventful day.The wives having the satisfaction of beating up their husbands with the Velan and the men having the supreme joy of submitting to the will of the women they loved.
Soon The Gujju men realised that in order to avoid this ordeal they need to present gifts to their wives….they brought flowers and sweetmeats.
Hence the tradition began.

As Gujarat fell under the influence of Western culture, that day was called ‘Velan time’ day.

The ritual soon spread to Britain and many other Western countries, specifically, the catch words ‘Velan time!’. Of course in their foreign tongues, it was first anglisised to ‘Velantime’ and then to ‘Valentine’.
And thereafter, 14th of February, came to be known as Valentine’s Day!

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