Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Tabletop coconut grater by Venkataraman Uapdhya

I had written about Venkataramana Upadhya's tender coconut opener few years ago. Recently learnt that the innovation is now being mass produced by a Coimbatore based manufacturer and is available in open market for Rs 150

Recently I also wrote about various innovative rat traps devised by Mr Upadhya

In this post, I am introducing another of his innovation- table top Coconut grater. Before we go into the device, be advised- if you've never worked on a coconut piece to extract its contents, you won't be able to appreciate this device much. Coconut is a must have item in almost all south Indian kitchens, as most of our food materials need a bit of coconut to optimize taste

Most of the traditional coconut grating devices involved sitting on them and scrapping the coconut against the blade. While it has its merits, it didn't really suit the modern kitchen where everything is done standing. Some brands of grinders do come with a tool to grate coconut- this is handy but one needs to hold the coconut tight against the powerful motor.

Mr Upadhya has devised a simple tool to make coconut grating easier. What you're seeing below is his innovation, table top coconut grater. It has got two legs, rear one with a grooved rubber padding. This leg is to be positioned at the edge of the table and thanks to the edgy rubber pad, the grip is phenomenal. One should put their hand near the front leg and scrape the inside of coconut against the tool.
I happened to meet him at his shop in Saligrama, Udupi district and sharing in this post a few interesting pieces of information related to his work 

Before finalizing on plastic moulds for his tool, Mr. Upadhya experimented with other possible raw materials- steel and wood.

The wooden version, though seems simpler, is a fairly complicated one to make. It has a total of 21 holes in it to hold all the components together. (Only 5 are visible clearly in below image, try to guess the rest)

Initially nails were used to hold the rubber against the wood, in addition to adhesive. Eventually Mr Upadhya realized that adhesive (Fevibond) is extremely strong and additional nails are not required. Holding these wooden pieces in a vice (if not clamped in a vice, wood may crack while drilling holes or punching screws) and shaping them is a laborious task. Wood as a raw material is also expensive. It is difficult to get consistent supply of good quality wood. 
The other material was steel. Couple of pieces well affixed and the blade affixed. To cut the steel raw materials into the desired shape, Mr Upadhya had to take help from nearby factory owners, how had devices to cut steel. But substandard quality of work puts off Mr Upadhya

Eventually Mr Upadhya settled for plastic as primary material for his grater. Plastic shapes are economic to mass produce and are highly durable and lighter too. However, Mr Upadhya is NOT into mass production. When asked why he didn't think of building a small factory, he said his focus is on innovation and not money making. If a factory is built focus gets diverted to money making and profitability, leaving very little time for creativity. Because of this, Mr Upadhya wishes to join hands with anyone willing to mass produce and market his ideas.
I enjoyed few moments spent with him in his workshop. I'd almost forgotten all my mechanical engineering learning, as I never got to put them to use over past eight years working in IT industry. Upadhya's simple thinkings and ideas can enlighten any engineering student.

Below: Mr Upadhya's small workshop where his ideas take shape.

I wish him all the success.

Similar: Tender coconut in Thailand * Branding tender coconut

Zoomcar impact-Hertz wakes up, Avis still sleeping

This post is a quick relook on changing self drive car rental offerings at Bengaluru. If this topic doesn't  interest you, click here to read other posts.

Looks like success of recently operational, Bangalore based 100% self drive start up company is beginning to shake up the traditional biggies.

Few years ago, Hertz's India franchisee, Carzonrent had a rather expensive and limited fleet self drive service on offer- In Chennai they had an Octavia Rider which they later sold and were offering only a Getz and Santro. In Bengaluru, they had a nice Scorpio Vls and few other cars like Fiesta. Rent was high and process was not so simple. (Initially they had delivery and pickup service, but later insisted that customers should pickup and drop from their garage, during day time only (like 10AM-5PM), which wasn't viable for making weekend plans). Their website would blindly ask people to get in touch with the office for more details on self drive, instead of making fleet and availability details online.
rear view amidst tea plantation
Avis was another key player in self drive market. They were expensive but used to give good service.

However, none of the traditional car rental companies really estimated the potential of self drive. They never promoted it correctly and never had proper pricing and process to make the deal tempting and convenient for prospective customers. Probably most of their revenue came from Corporate customers and self drive business wasn't really treated as profit centre.

However, it took couple of Americans to bring in the change the self drive renal landscape in Bengaluru. With Greg Moran and David founded becoming operational early this year, Bangaloreans are realizing the economy and convenience of self drive. As a result, most of the zoom cars are always sold out for the weekend, though they're adding more cars and locations every month. Rock bottom pricing, friendly website and process, included fuel are some of the key reasons for Zoom's success.

Obviously this seem to have shaken Hertz big time. Recently they've revamped their website and self drive section has got good attention. If you check Hertz Bangalore, you'll see Mahindra Reva e2O being offered at Rs 100 per hour (50% cheaper than Zoomcar). Similarly other cars- Vento, XUV500, Polo, Swift etc are also priced very attractively. However main catch being the minimum billing requirement, which means these cars can't be rented for an hour or so like Zoom and need to be rented for minimum 2-3 days in most of the cases. [Detail] Also fuel price is not included in the rental. So still not a match to what Zoomcar offers, but getting closer.

Unfortunately, Avis management still seem to be sleeping. They haven't bothered to refresh their self drive offering. They still continue to offer only Etios Petrol and an Innova on self drive, at a price tag two times the competition.

Apart from this, several individuals are also evaluating the prospect of launching a similar startup, with a fleet of few cars to begin with and trying to rent it out among friends and relatives in the beginning. Government has a stupid mandate that self drive fleet operator should have minimum 50 cars, which is difficult for small players to comply with. So many intend to run this business with white board vehicles. Self drive rental is not as smooth as it seems from the outside- there're many risks associated and one should be able to deal with them tactfully. (Example: rowdies taking a car for rent and using it for illegal purposes)

Anyhow, it is interesting to watch the changing dynamics of self drive market, resulting in more options to customer at cheaper rates.

Other self drive posts: Self drive rental in india- complete guide * Self drive rental in Bengaluru * Zoom in BMW

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

'Love is Vodka' by Amit Shankar

Love by Vodka is another interesting from book from the author of Chapter Eleven, reviewed recently.

Contrary to the corporate fiction in Chapter Eleven, Love is Vodka is the story of a high profile girl and her early life, how she tastes success and experiences one kind of boyfriend after another.

Written in first person narration of the girl, Moon Malik, book explores ups and downs of her life. The first few pages were not that exciting, as I was trying to understand the overall concept or context of the book. But once that's done (after reading first few chapters) I was set and reading rest of the chapters were quick and interesting.

'Love is Vodka' narrates Moon's experience with boy friends of different kinds- the typical one- Ash, the rich & famous but old Devil, Smart, Handsome but *ay Aditya, online friend Vikram and IIMA Graduate turned activist Gautam. Moon's life revolves around these people with once incident or the other playing spoilsport, whenever a relationship reaches near perfect stage.

Like the other book (Chapter Eleven) this book also has an incident of hacking.

Similar to 'Journey of Om', 'Love is Vodka' will be enjoyed by those who have interest in romance, break up and relationship related stories. While Journey of Om was from a male perspective, Love is Vodka will help understand the same from a female point of view.

  • Title: Love is Vodka
  • Author: Amit Shankar
  • Publishers: Vitasta
  • Genre: Fiction
  • Pages: 361
  • MRP:  Rs 195

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Book Review-Chapter Eleven by Amit Shankar

Finished reading this book within half a day. Chapter 11 is a corporate fiction, similar to Ravi Subramanian's banking thrillers.

Having witnessed Satyam Computers saga from inside, this book makes a lot sense to be and made me recollect those times, 4 years ago.

But even otherwise, if you're a corporate employee, lot of points brought out during the course of the story makes sense to you and you'll always feel connected to the lead character.

Chapter Eleven is a story of a young Rajastani Thakur, aspiring to make it big in corporate life. When he thought he's lucky to have a job in a well known corporate, series of events begin to unfold infront of him taking him through huge list of highs and lows all within a span of 6 months.

How do you feel if your company files for bankruptcy on the date of your joining? How it is to work under the pressure of losing job, having to survive a bad marriage and deal with dozen other difficulties when they all bombard together? Do read for yourself to enjoy this book.

Besides corporate angle being key focus through out the story, VVS (lead character's personal track is also well covered and interwoven into the main story, merging smartly in the end.  What happens to VVS in the end is kept unspecified, probably good way to plan a sequel and bring him back in next book.

Key take home points from the book:

  • Non disclosure means non disclosure- irrespective of how trust worthy the other person is
  • There're no permanent friends and enemies or good & bad in Corporate world. Everything is dynamic
  • Being honest and being smart are mutually exclusive things, most of the time.

I particularly likes the idea of keeping a quick summary of various characters and terms used in the book at the end. This helps quickly connect the story or understand a point.

I will be reading next another book by same author, Love is Vodka

  • Title: Chapter Eleven
  • Author: Amit Shankar
  • Publishers: Vitasta
  • Genre: Fiction
  • Pages: 361
  • MRP:  Rs 245 (Rs 231 on flipkart, I feel price tag is on slightly higher side)

Friday, October 25, 2013

Skywatch Friday-Wind is the answer

At home we press a button and want the fans to rotate. What goes behind generating that power is something we seldom care. Had an opportunity to spend a few moments with mighty windmills on a hill somewhere in Shimoga district. So far I'd seen them only from a distance and this was an opportunity to see them from close quarters.
They look tiny from a distance, but once you go close, the sheer size of these components amazes us. An assembly of 3 blades is mounted on top of a huge pillar. 
The pillar is about 77 meters high and is erected on a strong concrete foundation which is said to be made up of 1000+ bags of cement and corresponding quantities of stones and sand. Precision engineering is required to erect these towers, as even 1 degree of deviation from upright position can mean that tower will soon incline and eventually collapse.The tower has a door and internal staircase for maintenance staff to reach the top of the tower where rotor blades are mounted. The estimated cost of each windmill tower is about a crore plus and these are built and maintained by Suzlon.

The blade starts rotating once wind speed is more than 4 meters per second and runs optimally till a speed of 20 meters per second, beyond which power generation stops. The blades and tower are rated to survive windspeeds of up to 50 meters per second. If the wind blows even faster, there is a risk that these structures may not withstand the onslaught.

Periodical maintenance is required to lubricate the gears etc, so there is some negligible operational cost involved, else it would ensure unlimited supply of green energy.
Above and Below: We got to see an abandoned blade from up-close. These blades hollow on the inside and are made from Ipoxy bonded fibre glass using Resin infusion moulding technology. Length of these blades is close to 40 meters.

 There're a few temples in the vicinity and there's a rock filled road to access these towers- built for construction and maintenance purpose.
Supplying to the grid

Visit skylie for more skywatch photos. Watch sunrise shots clicked at Hebbal lake here. It got quite a few likes and comments

Reva e2O article in Vijaya Next

Reva e2o article in Kannada, published in this week's edition of Vijaya Next
Read other published articles here. Read English version of Reva e2o review here

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Sakrebailu elephant sanctuary, Shivamogga

Top post on, the community of Indian Bloggers 
Sakrebailu is Shimoga (Shivamogga)'s Dubare.

Sakrebailu is a village 14 kms from Shivamogga town in Karnataka. Sakrebailu is close to Gajanur dam on Shivamogga-Thirthahalli road.
Above & Below: Children of Mahut (elephant caretaker) joy riding a mighty elephant, bringing them to the camp. While kids in cities fight for faster bikes expensive video games, those in villages find joy in nature itself

Sakrebailu is officially open to tourists from 8.30 AM. But activities at the campus start even earlier. Elephant caretakers go search for their elephants in the forest and bring them here for bathing and feeding. If the guard manning the gate is in good mood and if there's no crowd, you might be let in even before official opening time. If that happens, you can go fairly close to elephants and have leisurely chat with the mahuts. However as the crowd increases, they get tired of talking same thing again and again. Also because of safety concerns, tourists will be asked not to come too close and watch from a distance.

Sakrebailu has a boating facility and also an elephant ride on offer. But these are often left to staff's discretion. Boats are usually not operated in the morning when elephant bathing is in progress. In the evening, boating may be there but no elephants will be there to see.

Below: In the waters of Gajanur dam. Height of the dam was raised few years ago, resulting in submerging of more land, including most of Mandagadde bird sanctuary.

Camp has about 17 elephants. I was told none of these elephants were taken to Mysore to be part of Dasara celebrations.
Apart from elephant sanctuary, Sakrebailu also has a garden with wide range of herbs and other medicinal plants, but this garden appears to be poorly maintained.

Recently a resort also seem to have come up in the campus- I saw below signage. If interested you can call them and enquire about the details. Note that this resort is not to be confused with Jungle Lodges & Resorts

Early October, Sakrebailu will witness an annual celebration, which I keep missing. If possible plan your visit around that time. Be sure to add Sakrebyle to your plan when exploring Shimoga and nearby area.

Nearby places: Gajanur Dam * Mandagadde * Thyavarekoppa Lion Safari * Honnemaradu * Shivappa Nayak palace * Kundadri Hills

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Innovative Mouse Traps from Upadhya brothers

Can you trap a rat with a pvc pipe and some simple physics? What are the ways to trap mice family without really having to poison them or kill them? In this post, I am explaining few of those possibilities, thanks to innovative low cost devices coming from the brains of Upadhya Brothers, Saligrama, Udupi, Karnataka.

Rat Trap 1:
This one adopts simple principle of gravity to trap a rodent. It contains a PVT pipe closed on one side and open on the other, placed on ground in an unbalanced way. Food items need to be placed near the close end of the pipe. A rodent that enters the pipe in temptation of food makes weight shift to the right end of the pipe and voila, pipe shifts to a vertical position, as shown in second image. Rodent will never be able to come out of the pipe and gets trapped inside.
Notice the provision for counter weights

Rat Trap 2
This trap uses a similar technique as above, but the trap is executed by an hardened ball. Once the mouse moves to the longer section of the pipe, due to gravity the pipe tilts and the ball, waiting on the left, moves to right, trapping the rodent. Rats always try to squeeze through the tiny gap between the ball and pipe circumference and get trapped inside and they never think of pushing the ball out.

Rat Trap 3: 
Another model below uses a simple interlock mechanism to tempt the rodent go inside by pushing the flip wall.
Trap 4: This one looks like traditional mouse trap found in villages, but has a few enhancements.
Below is the traditional mouse trap available in the market, which almost kills the animal. If you're careless, it can also injure your hand by snapping on it.
I was told these traps have been successfully tested in the household and neighborhood.

Mr Upadhya has many such innovations under his belt. The tender coconut opener, which I had written about earlier, is one of them. I'll soon be writing separately about another device- portable coconut grater/  Mr Upadhya is looking for people who can take his ideas to mass production. If you've a manufacturing facility and interested in bulk production of innovative house hold products, do contact Mr Upadhya on +91 9739524260

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Kannada story- ಕೈಗೆ ಬಂದ ತುತ್ತು

This post shares a kannada story I'd written a decade ago for our school magazine.

ಇದು ಹಲವು ವರ್ಷಗಳ ಹಿಂದೆ  ಶಾಲಾ ಮ್ಯಾಗಜಿನ್ ಗಾಗಿ ಬರೆದ ಕಥೆ. ಇತ್ತೀಚಿಗೆ ತಿರುಗಿ ಕಣ್ಣಿಗೆ ಬಿತ್ತು . ನಿಮ್ಮೊಂದಿಗೆ  ಹಂಚಿಕೊಳ್ಳುತ್ತಿದ್ದೇನೆ. ವಸತಿ ಶಾಲೆಯಲ್ಲಿದ್ದ ನಾವು ಹೊರಗಿನ ಕೆಲಸಕ್ಕಾಗಿ ಆಫೀಸ್ ಸ್ಟಾಫ್ ಅನ್ನು ಅವಲಂಬಿಸಬೇಕಿತ್ತು .

Friday, October 18, 2013

'Illusions of Love' by K B Trehan

Illusions of Love is another book which I’d received 2-3 years ago but had managed to read only recently.

Illusions of Love is a simple and straight forward story, of a young lady who escapes from her in-law’s place the day after wedding, reason being the groom came in fully drunk and misbehaves with his newly wed wife. Despite apologies from the groom later and advise of her parents, Sheena refuses to go back and begins her corporate life with Godrej, where she gradually raises up the ladder and eventually marries a colleague. Will she be happy forever, what mistakes they do and how their perfect life takes shortcuts and lands in trouble is the essence of the book. Do read author’s note section without fail.

You can finish reading Illusions of Love in 3-4 hours flat. It is a good companion if you wish to read something on the flight. I started reading at an evening and was done by night.

While K B Trehan is featured as author of the book, an inside page suggests Arvind Bharadwaj also has contributed to the book. It was interesting to know that author KB is an executive working the field of heavy industries.

Title: Illusions of Love
Author: K B Trehan with Arvind Bharadwaj
Type: Fiction
Publisher: Cedar Books (A Pustak Mahal imprint)
Pages: 190
MRP: Rs 195
Isbn: 978-81-223-1097-9

Note: this books is not to be confused with another book with same title, authored by Michelle Betham. Also unfortunately this and the other book I reviewed earlier (Journey of Om) are available without any discount online, at MRP.

Journey of Om by Chandru Bhojwani-Book Review

I’d received this book few years ago and only recently I managed to finish reading it. Here’s a quick review of this fictions book, titled “The journey of OM” written by Chandru Bhojwani
If you’re going through ‘break ups’ or emotional stress arising from relationships, this book, though fiction, can help you out.

Om is a columnist based in NY, who is undergoing the trauma of breakup and all that, after finding the lady whom he loved and in relationship cheating on him. Om tries to come out of the thoughts but repeatedly fails. Some of his experiences and ideas he uses for his column, sharing it with magazine’s readers.  

In essence, OM suggests following steps post breakup, to recover and recoil:
Step1: Acceptance (Tell your mind repeatedly that it is over and nothing can be done about it)
Step 2: Emotional Spring Clean (Get rid of things that can remind you of your ex- such as gifts)
Step 3: The calculation (Author suggests 4-6  months should be ideal time frame to get over a breakup and start new life)
Step 4: Occupied (keep yourself busy)
Step 5: Communication lockdown (Eliminate all possibilities of communicating with ex or meeting them)
Step 6: The ‘Bonus’ – I didn’t understand this point clearly, but author seem to suggest that getting involved in things like one night stand out of anger will NOT help in recovery process

In parallel, life events of Om’s friend Arun, ‘cousin’ Mona unfold. In her mid thirties Mona is yet to get settled and in her attempt to do so, gets into an internet introduced relationship and eventually gets cheated. While Arun’s is another typical story of not earning enough to please would-be father in law. Most of the story takes place in New York.

In the end, Om’s old love Preeti comes back into his life all of a sudden and apologises, when Om had managed to find another. Which one did he opt for is not spelt out in the book.

If you enjoy books on love and romance and relationship, you’ll enjoy this book. 

Title: The journey of Om
Author: Chandru Bhojwani
Type: Fiction
Publisher: Cedar Books (A pustak Mahal imprint)
Pages: 287
MRP: Rs 175

Isbn 978-81-223-1091-7
The book is available for download as ebook from Amazon for Rs 131

Also read: Guardian Angels *

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Jatta Kannada movie review

For the benefit of Non-kannada readers, this post is about a kannada movie called Jatta. If this doesn't interest you, click here to read other posts.

ನಾನು ೪೦ ರುಪಾಯಿ  ಕೊಟ್ಟು ಸಿನೆಮಾ ನೋಡಿ ಎಷ್ಟೋ ಕಾಲ ಆಗಿತ್ತು . ಗೆಳೆಯ ಗಿರಿರಾಜ ನ ನಿರ್ದೇಶನದಲ್ಲಿ ಮೂಡಿ ಬಂದ ಜಟ್ಟ ಸಿನೆಮ ನೋಡಬೇಕು ಎನಿಸಿದರು ಸೋಮಾರಿತನದಿಂದ ಇಂದು ನಾಳೆ ಎಂದು ತಡವಾಗುತ್ತ ಹೋಯಿತು . ಜಟ್ಟ ನೊಡಲು ಮಂಗಳೂರಿಗೆ ಹೋಗಬೇಕೆನೋ ಅಂದುಕೊಂಡಿದ್ದೆ, ಕುಂದಾಪುರದ ವಿನಾಯಕ ಚಿತ್ರ ಮಂದಿರ ದಲ್ಲಿ ಜಟ್ಟ ನಡೆಯುತ್ತಿರುವುದು ಪೋಸ್ಟರ್ ಗಳಿಂದ ತಿಳಿಯಿತು. ಮೊನ್ನೆ ಸೋಮವಾರ ಸಂಜೆ ಪುರುಸೊತ್ತು ಮಾಡಿಕೊಂಡು ಕುಂದಾಪುರ ಕ್ಕೆ ಹೋದೆವು. ನಾವು ಹೋದಾಗ ೬ ಗಂಟೆ ಆಗಿತ್ತು. ಚಿತ್ರ ಮಂದಿರದ ಸಿಬ್ಬಂದಿಯವರೊಂದಿಗೆ ವಿಚಾರಿಸಿದಾಗ ಇಂದೇ ಕೊನೆಯ ದಿನವೆಂದೂ, ೭. ೩೦ ಕ್ಕೆ ಕೊನೆಯ ಷೋ ಇರುವುದೆಂದೂ ತಿಳಿಸಿದರು .

ನಾವು ಅಲ್ಲಿಲ್ಲಿ ಸುತ್ತಾಡಿ ೭ ಗಂಟೆಗೆ ಚಿತ್ರಮಂದಿರಕ್ಕೆ ವಾಪಾಸು ಹೋದೆವು. ೪೦ ರೂ ಬಾಲ್ಕನಿ ಟಿಕೇಟು. ಕೊಂಡು ಒಳಗೆ ಹೋದಾಗ ಯಾರೂ ಇರಲಿಲ್ಲ. ಸಿನೆಮ ಪ್ರಾರಂಭ ವಾಗುವ ಹೊತ್ತಿಗೆ ಇನ್ನು ಕೆಲವರು ಬಂದರು. ಒಟ್ಟು ೧೦-೧೫ ಜನರಿದ್ದರು.

ಜಟ್ಟ ಚಿತ್ರದಿಂದ ಏನನ್ನು expect ಮಾಡಬೇಕು ಅನ್ನುವ ಖಚಿತತೆ ನಮಗೆ ಇರಲಿಲ್ಲ . ನಿರ್ದೇಶಕರ ಮುಖಪುಸ್ತಕ ಗೋಡೆ ಮೇಲಿನ ಬರಹದ ಪ್ರಕಾರ ಇದು ಎಂಟರ್ಟೈನ್ಮೆಂಟ್ /ಆಕ್ಷನ್ /ರೋಮ್ಯಾನ್ಸ್ ಆಧಾರಿತ ಸಿನೆಮಾ ಅಲ್ಲ . ಇನ್ನೇನಿರಬಹುದು ಎಂಬ ಕುತೂಹಲದೊಂದಿಗೆ ಸಿನೆಮ ನೋಡಲು ಕುಳಿತೆವು .

ಜಟ್ಟ ಎಂದರೆ ಏನು? ಎಂದು ನೀವು ಮಂಡೆ ಬಿಸಿ ಮಾಡಿಕೊಳ್ಳುತ್ತಿದ್ದರೆ ಹೇಳಿಬಿಡುತ್ತೇನೆ - ಅದು ಸಿನೆಮಾ ನಾಯಕನ ಹೆಸರು. ಕಿಶೋರೆ ಕುಮಾರ್ in  ಅಂಡ್ as ಜಟ್ಟ - ಕಾಡಿನಲ್ಲಿ ಫಾರೆಸ್ಟ್ ಗಾರ್ಡ್. ಆತನ ಜೀವನದ ಕಥೆ- ಕಾಡಿನ ಮೇಲೆ ಆತನಿಗಿರುವ ಪ್ರೀತಿ, ಬದುಕಿನೆಡೆಗಿನ ದ್ವಂದ್ವ , ಆತನ ಆಲೋಚನೆಗಳ ಮೇಲೆ ಸಂಸ್ಕೃತಿಯ ರಕ್ಷಕರಂತೆ ಪೋಸ್ ಕೊಡುವವರ ಪ್ರಭಾವ, ಸಮಾಜವನ್ನು ಸುಧಾರಿಸಲು ಹೊರಟ ಉಮೇದಿನಲ್ಲಿ ಆತ ಮಾಡಿಕೊಳ್ಳುವ ಎಡವಟ್ಟುಗಳು ಕಥೆಯ ಜೀವಾಳ .
ಸಂಸ್ಕೃತಿ, ಅದರ ರಕ್ಷಣೆ ಎಂದರೆ ಏನು? ಅದರ ಜವಾಬ್ದಾರಿ ಯಾರದ್ದು? ಮಾನವ ಸಂಬಂಧಗಳ ನಡುವೆ ಸರಿ ತಪ್ಪಿನ ವ್ಯಾಖ್ಯಾನವೇನು? ಬದಲಾವಣೆ ತರುವುದು ಎಂದರೆ ಏನು ಮತ್ತು ಹೇಗೆ? ಸ್ವ ಘೋಷಿತ ಸಂಸ್ಕೃತಿ ರಕ್ಷಕರ ಬಂಡವಾಳವೇನು? ಕಾಡಿನ ಹಿನ್ನೆಲೆ/ಕಾನ್ಸೆಪ್ಟ್ ಇಟ್ಟುಕೊಂಡು ಈ ಪ್ರಶ್ನೆಗಳಿಗೆ ಉತ್ತರ ಹುಡುಕುವ ಪ್ರಯತ್ನ ಸಿನೆಮಾದಲ್ಲಿ ಮಾಡಲಾಗಿದೆ.  ಅಲ್ಲೊಂದು ಇಲ್ಲೊಂದು ದೃಶ್ಯಗಳು ವಿಕೃತಿ ಎನಿಸಿದರು, ಅವನ್ನು ನಿರ್ದೇಶಕರ ಕಲಾ ಸ್ವಾತಂತ್ರ್ಯ ಎಂದುಕೊಂಡು ಸುಮ್ಮನಾಗುವುದು ಒಳಿತು . ನಾಯಕಿಯೊಬ್ಬಳು ಸಿನೆಮಾದುದ್ದಕ್ಕೂ ಒಂದೇ ಕೊಣೆಯಲ್ಲಿ (ok  ಕೋಣೆ ಮತ್ತದರ ಸುತ್ತ ಮುತ್ತ) ಉಳಿದು ಕಂಬಳಿ ಹೊದ್ದು ನಟಿಸಿರುವುದು ಬಹುಶಃ ಬೇರೆ ಯಾವ ಸಿನೆಮಾದಲ್ಲೂ ಇದ್ದಿರಲಾರದು. ನಾಯಕಿಯಾದವಳು ಆಗಾಗ ಕುಣಿಯಬೇಕು, ಇನ್ನೇನೋ ಮಾಡಬೇಕು ಎಂದೆಲ್ಲ ನಿರೀಕ್ಷಿಸುವ ಪ್ರೇಕ್ಷಕ ವರ್ಗಕ್ಕೆ ಜಟ್ಟ ಇಷ್ಟವಾಗಲಾರದು.  ಕಥೆಯಲ್ಲಿ ಅಡಗಿರುವ ಸೂಕ್ಷ್ಮ ಸಂದೇಶವನ್ನು, ಕಹಿ ಸತ್ಯವನ್ನು ಗ್ರಹಿಸುವ ಮನಸ್ಸು/ಆಸಕ್ತಿ ಇರುವವರಿಗೆ ಜಟ್ಟ ಖಂಡಿತ ಇಷ್ಟವಾಗುತ್ತದೆ.

ಉತ್ತರ ಕನ್ನಡದ ಕಾಡುಗಲ್ಲಿ ಸಂಪೂರ್ಣ ಚಿತ್ರ ಮೂಡಿಬಂದಿದೆ. ಅನಗತ್ಯ ಹಾಡು, ಕುಣಿತ, ಹೊಡೆತ ಯಾವುದು ಜಟ್ಟ ದಲ್ಲಿಲ್ಲ. ಸೂಕ್ಷ್ಮ ಸಂದೇಶವೊಂದನ್ನು ನೋಡುಗರ ಮನಸ್ಸಿಗೆ ನಾಟುವಂತೆ ತಿಳಿಸಿಕೊಡುವ ಪ್ರಯತ್ನವೊಂದನ್ನು ಮಾತ್ರ ಪ್ರಾಮಾಣಿಕವಾಗಿ ಮಾಡಲಾಗಿದೆ . ಇದೇ ಕತೆಯನ್ನು ಇತರ ನಿರ್ದೇಶಕರು ವಹಿಸಿಕೊಂಡಿದ್ದರೆ ಇನ್ನಷ್ಟು ಮೋಜು ಮಸ್ತಿ ಸೇರಿಸಿ ಕಮರ್ಷಿಯಲ್ ಚಿತ್ರ ಮಾಡುತಿದ್ದರೊ ಏನೋ - ಹಾಗೆ ಮಾಡಿದ್ದಲ್ಲಿ ಪ್ರೇಕ್ಷಕರು ನೃತ್ಯ, ಫೈಟ್ ನೋಡಿಕೊಂಡು ಖುಶಿಪಟ್ಟುಕೊಂಡು ಹೋಗುತ್ತಿದ್ದರೆ ವಿನಾ ಸಿನೆಮಾದ ಸಂದೇಶದ ಬಗ್ಗೆ ತಲೆ ಕೆಡಿಸಿಕೊಳ್ಳುತ್ತಿರಲಿಲ್ಲ. ಹಾಗಾಗ ಬಾರದು ಎಂಬ ನಿರ್ದೇಶಕರ ಕಾಳಜಿಯೇ ಸಿನೆಮಾ ಒಂದು ವಾರವೂ ಸರಿಯಾಗಿ ನಡೆಯದಂತೆ ಮಾಡಿದರೆ ಅದನ್ನು ಸಿನೆಮಾ ಮಾಡಿದವರ ತಪ್ಪು ಎನ್ನುವುದಕ್ಕಿಂತ ಪ್ರೇಕ್ಷಕರ ಬದಲಾದ priority ಗೆ ಹಿಡಿದ ಕೈಗನ್ನಡಿ ಎನ್ನಬೇಕಾಗುತ್ತದೆ.

ಚಿತ್ರದಲ್ಲಿ ಕುಂದಾಪುರ ಕನ್ನಡವನ್ನು ಸಾಕಷ್ಟು ಬಳಸಿರುವುದು, ಉತ್ತಮ locations & ಛಾಯಾಗ್ರಹಣ ಇವು ಚಿತ್ರದ ಕೆಲವು ಪ್ಲಸ್ ಪಾಯಿಂಟ್ಸ್

ದುರದೃಷ್ಟ ವಶಾತ್ ರಾಜ್ಯದ ಹಲವು ಸಿನೆಮಾ ಮಂದಿರಗಳು ಜಟ್ಟ ಚಿತ್ರವನ್ನು ಈಗಾಗಲೆ ಎತ್ತಂಗಡಿ ಮಾಡಿವೆ (ಪ್ರೇಕ್ಷಕರು ಬಾರದ ಕಾರಣ ಕೊಟ್ಟು). ಪುರುಸೊತ್ತು ಇದ್ದರೆ ಇನ್ನುಳಿದ ಚಿತ್ರಮಂದಿರಗಳಲ್ಲಿ ಒಮ್ಮೆ ನೋಡಿ ಬನ್ನಿ. ಹಾಗೇ ನಿರ್ದೇಶಕ ಗಿರಿರಾಜ್ ರ  facebook ಬರಹಗಳ ಮೇಲೊಮ್ಮೆ ಕಣ್ಣಾಡಿಸಿ- ಚಿತ್ರ ನಿರ್ಮಾಣ ಮತ್ತು ಪ್ರದರ್ಶನದ ಬಗ್ಗೆ ಅವರು ಪಟ್ಟಿರುವ ಕಷ್ಟದ ಅರಿವು ನಿಮಗಾಗುತ್ತದೆ

Also see: Navilaadavaru Kannada movie * 10 in 1 movie review *

St mary's island, malpe, Udupi

St Mary's island is a popular tourist attraction near the coastal town of Udupi & Mangalore, Karnataka.

I'd been there years ago as a child and revisited recently. This post shares a few photos and tourist information on St Mary's island, Malpe.

The island reportedly got its name from Vasco Da Gama, who stopped by this island during his journey that discovered India. St Mary's is a small island, with rocks on all sides. It is probably because of these rocks the island is intact even today, without letting the mighty ocean waters to erode the sands. Apart from the ocean waters and rocks, island has a few coconut trees, few shelters created by tourism department and couple of makeshift shops selling chips and cold drinks.

Earlier, visitors could spend whole day at the island, from morning to evening. People used to come in with home made food, have a picnic here and go back. But of late, boat operators have been enforcing a 1 hour time limit at the island, which is fairly inadequate to explore the island. It takes at least 2 hours to explore the St Mary's island comfortably. 1 hour deadline is not a hard stop, even if you miss the boat, you can take the next one.

A rock that looks like Ganesha
Like all tourist spots in India, St Mary's Island is also poorly maintained, with trash thrown all around. The island was in news early 2012 for a govt supported Rave party that was facilitated here.

Jetski rides and boat rides around the island are other attractions at St Mary's island.

St Mary's Island is an ideal half day plan if you're visiting Udupi/Mangalore.

Tourist Information:
Distance: 7kms from Udupi, 65 kms from Mangalore
Timing: From 9 AM till 5PM, boats leave from Malpe at regular intervals, typically once they get minimum of 30 tourists
Fee: Car parking fee: Rs 20, boat fee: Rs 100 per person (The lady at the counter even refused to issue tickets, saying she can issue tickets only after confirming that there're 30 people)
Other notes: Boat rides might be suspended in case of heavy rains/adverse weather
Nearby places: Kapu lighthouse * Endpoint Manipal * Udupi Srikrishna temple

Malpe beach is nearby and Malpe harbor which houses lots of fishing boats are worth paying a quick visit.