See also Rakesh Mathur's Home Page
So many foreign tourists visit Indian cities every year but very few of them seem to care about them. Sue Carpenter, a journalist with Harper & Queen magazine has been visiting Jaisalmer, Rajasthan for many years. She is enamoured by one of the last desert cities of India but at the same time feels sorry for its dilapidation.
Jaisalmer has a population of 40 to 50, 000 but more than 250, 000 tourists visit this city every year. Consequently, the resources of the city are getting dry and high. more than 120 litres of water is being pumped everyday compared to 5-10 litres per head in the good old days. There is no adequate sewage system.
The old havelis and buildings of Rajasthani architecture are falling apart. To make the matter worse, patch work of cement is being used instead of the local lime stones. The old intricate stone carvings are being repainted in lurid colurs. There are cheap concrete hotels everywhere and rubbish is left at the streets to rot. Electricity and cable wires are dangerously spreading out everywhere for local people to tip over.
Social conditions are getting worse. To satisfy the needs of the tourists, alcohol, drugs and materialic values are being brought in which is encroaching on the traditional living environment. After getting disgusted with the rapid decline of the city, Sue Carpenter has launched a Jaisalmer In Jeopardy Campaign in London. She is being helped by a number of Indians living in the UK such as Ajay Khare, conservation architect of University of York. The Indian High Commissioner has pledged support for the cause.
Sue Carpenter would like to hear from anyone who has been to Jaisalmer and would like to help. She may be contacted at 20-E Redcliffe Gardens, London SW10 9EX. Fax No. 0171 460 8592.U.K.
Every Indian living in the UK is interested about the other Indian. This curiosity is expressed in many ways. To pool all the curiousities together, since 1974, J.S. Sachar has been busy publishing Asian Who's Who. in Britain.
It is a definite directory of successful Indians and other Asians living in Britain. Some of the successful individuals have merited a big bio-data with their photographs. Others are just a passing mention.
Most of the Asians are not just businessmen. They have earned their name in a wide range of fields, from education to medicine, from science to the arts and literature.
Who's Who is published every year from 47 Beattyville Gardens, Barkingside, Illford, Essex IG6 1JW. Anyone who would have some suggestions may write to this address directly. The Managing Editor is always eager to hear more success stories. The launch of this book is celebrated with the Asian of the year award in a splendid hotel. Those who can afford the function are invited to contribute both to the book as well as the launch party.
YOUNG INDIANS LET THE STEAM OFF
Living in a different country for a young person can not be easy. Even if one is born there. Racism in schools and colleges is rampant. In Britain alone, a racial incident - from name-calling to serious injury ( and even murder) - happens every five minutes. Racial attacks are happening in other European countries as well. Some can cope with it others can't.
ALL DIFFERENT ALL EQUAL
is a Europe wide campaign for the young people in which thousands of them are getting involved to get rid of racism and unfair treatment. From France to Finland, Italy to Ireland, events are being organised - concerts, rallies, and meeting with politicians.
In Britain, there are many national orgnaisations dedicated to organising activities for the campaign. They are planning national music events, poster and sticker campaigns, demonstrations, festivals and lots more.
Everyone who has a say in how our lives are run will hear what young people think about racism. To get involved in the campaign and join all different all equal pen-pal scheme, one can telephone Claire McMaster on telephone number 0171-932 5404.
There are many others who would prefer to do something else to express their feelings of living in Europe. The Immigration Poets Association has organised a poetry competition address this situation. This competition is open to all (any age group) immigrants of any nationality. The theme is "Your experiences as an immigrant in the UK".
Poems, should be original, not to exceed 40 lines and should be sent in English to The Immigrants Poets Association at PO Box 289, Southampton, SO14 02N before the end of this month. The first prize is L50 and highly recommended poems will be included in an anthology.
ENCYCLOPAEDIA OF INDIAN CINEMA
A unique insight into the world's biggest and most diverse film industry is already available in London. Drawing on the work of an international team of specialists, this vast lavishly illustrated and fully indexed book features a wide range of topics.
750 entries on all the leading directors, stars, studios, genres, composers, scenarists and art movements from Dadasaheb Phalke to Mani Rathnam and from the Hindi, Tamil and Telugu films to Kannada, Malayalam, Bengali and Marathi cinemas.
1460 entries on key films from all periods and regions, with cast and credits as well as concise critical, often challenging evaluations.
A chronicle of Indian film history together with basic production statistics. Comprehensive filmographies, many compiled for the first time for all the major film makers, stars and music composers. In all more than 500 pages tell the story of the Indian Cinema.
Whether your love of Indian cinema is based on entertainment or scholarship, the Encyclopaedia makes fascinating reading and is fast becoming an important reference book. The copy of the book can be ordered from the British Film Institute Publications, 29 Rathbone Street, London W1P 1AG. United Kingdom.
THE ROYAL INDIAN RAILWAY
For over 150 years since the British built the first railway in India, there has been no better way to experience the many splendours of this vast subcontinent than by train.
Rich in history and tradition, India is home to some of the oldest civilisations and religions in the world. Their legacy is a vibrant culture with colourful festivals, dance and music as well as an abundance of architectural wonders.
>From the majestic palaces and monuments of Mughal India in the north, to the magnificent temple carvings in the south, India's diverse attractions and breathtaking landscapes provide an exotic backdrop for a memorable rail journey.
Sterling Holiday Resort (India) Ltd, India's foremost holiday company, and L&R Leisure Group, owner and operator of The Royal Scotsman, are collaborating to create two new luxury train journeys to equal the very best in the world. 'The Royal Indian (Northern)' will offer tours of the northern states of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, including India's famed Golden Triangle, while 'The Royal Indian (Southern)' will tour India's southern regions comprising the fascinating states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
Each train will carry approximately 50 guests in five-star luxury and will be staffed by an attentive crew. The interiors are being designed to capture the bygone era of the Raj, while simultaneously offering every modern day comfort, including full air-conditioning.
By day, guests can enjoy the ever changing scenery from the train's comfortable Observation Cars and visit some of India's most spectacular forts, palaces, temples and other places of interest along the route. Luxury private coaches will be available for all excursions, accompanied by the train's own knowledgeable guides.
Throughout each tour, gourmet Indian and international cuisine, accompanied by a selection of fine wines from around the world, will be served in the train's elegant dining carriages.
More information on The Royal Indian can be requested from L&R Leisure Group, The Stationmaster's House, Windsor Central Station, Thames Street, Windsor SL4 IPJ uk. e-mail no. email@example.com