Wednesday, August 20, 2008

India gets bronze in wrestling at Beijing - a repeat performance after 1952

Sushil Kumar free style wrestler of India won the bronze medal after beating Kazakhstan's wrestler in a play-off in the men's 66 kg freestyle wrestling through repechage round at the Beijing Olympics. This gave India its second medal in the on going Olympics. Earlier, Sushil Kumar lost to Ukrainian Andriy Stadnik on points after being pegged down 3-8 on technical points. This is repeat performance after 1952 when Khashaba Dadasaheb Jadhav, who gave the country its first individual Olympic medal, something which has been repeated this year in Beijing.

Khashaba Dadasaheb Jadhav or KD Jadhav was independent India's first individual [[Olympic Games when he won the wrestling bronze medal at the 1952 Helsinki games. Since 1900 when Norman Pritchard won 2 silver medals in athletics, India had won gold medals only in field hockey, a team sport. In fact many don’t know about KD Yadav, now when media will talk about Sushil’s achievement they will remember him too and give him some recognition. This medal will also help to revive wrestling in India, wherein India can do wonders.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Cocaine use among young in UK soars

Cocaine is a naturally occurring alkaloid usually extracted from the leaves of the coca shrub and is a powerfully addictive stimulant drug. Its popularity is growing among teenagers and young adults, which is a point
of concern for British society
ALMOST TWO million people take illegal drugs at least once a month. A Britain newspaper The Independent quotes government sources for these shocking figures. Cocaine popularity is growing majorly among teenagers and young adults, which is a point of concern. In fact, recent report of the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB), a UN agency has stated that how film actors, sports stars and rock musicians influence young people and it states that use of cocaine by celebrities is encouraging more young people to take the drug. This is an area of concern not only in United Kingdom (UK), but across many countries.

For UK report of The Independent, adds that two million people in Britain take illegal drugs each month while one in three adults has tried banned substances, but what is of concern is that one in four school-aged children has used drugs. The reports state how commonplace drug use has become in modern Britain, which has some of the highest levels of abuse in Western Europe. More and more people are using cocaine or ecstasy at the weekend, and this number is growing.
Cocaine is a naturally occurring alkaloid usually extracted from the leaves of the coca shrub and is powerfully addictive stimulant drug. The drug is a strong central nervous system stimlant and its abuse affects include constricted blood vessels, dilated pupils, increased temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure. Experts state that if the drug is taken repeatedly and at increasingly high doses, it may lead to a state of increasing irritability, restlessness, and paranoia. This can result in a period of full-blown paranoid psychosis, in which the user loses touch with reality and experiences auditory hallucinations. Plus there is many more complication including cardiac, affect on respiration and even gastro-intestinal tract. Cocaine abuse during pregnancy is an important public health issue. Recent research states that neonatal exposure to cocaine causes neocortical cytoarchitectural and neurobehavioural alterations in the developing brain.

The media report quotes government data, which showed that the number of under-25s admitted to hospital with mental and behavioral problems linked to illegal drug use has risen by around a fifth in a decade, something which is associated with the drug abuse. It is high time that world agency needs to do something concern to reverse this trend or we are moving ahead in tough times, with the way its drug use in soaring.

Contributed by Anil Gulati Source

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Food safety a concern to prevent diseases

Food safety is a major concern. With increased debate on avian influenza this area gets more focus, for which serious steps are been taken by WHO in increasing awareness and educating people, including children on safe food handling.

RECENTLY MEDIA reports state on the need for creating awareness about food safety and services. There have been reports on making Goa a "safe food town”. Food safety is a major concern with increased debate on avian influenza this area gets more focus. Not only avian influenza even diarrhoeal diseases alone kills an estimated 1.8 million children annually, and most of these illnesses are attributed to contaminated food or water.

Proper food preparation can prevent most foodborne diseases. As per World Health Organisation (WHO) food safety is a public health priority, millions of people fall ill every year and many die as a result of eating unsafe food. Serious outbreaks of foodborne disease have been documented on every continent in the past decade, and in many countries rates of illnesses are increasing significantly. With increase in trade, imported products are getting common in countries and the fear of spread of contamination due to lack of food safety is crossing borders.

WHO states that disease-causing organisms in food are transmitted far and wide by today’s interconnected global food-chains - escalating how often and where foodborne illnesses occur. Rapid urbanisation worldwide is adding a risks to it, as urban dwellers eat more food prepared outside the home that may not be handled or prepared safely - including fresh foods and fish, meat and poultry.

Key global food safety concerns include -- spread of microbiological hazards (including such bacteria as Salmonella or Escherichia coli-e. coli); chemical food contaminants, assessments of new food technologies (such as genetically modified food) and strong food safety systems in most countries to ensure a safe global food-chain.

WHO has developed a global food hygiene message with five key steps that promote health, and the five keys to safer food are
-Keep clean-Separate raw and cooked food
-Cook thoroughly
-Keep food at safe temperatures
-Use safe water and raw materials
It also states that increasing awareness and educating people, including children on safe food handling behaviors will help in preventing food borne diseases today and in the future.

Contributed by anil

Saturday, August 09, 2008

The unwelcoming Delhi

Commonwealth Games are just a couple of years ahead. But is Delhi ready to play the good host when, everyday, new arrivals to the national capital get an unsavory welcome by overcharging auto rickshaw and taxi operators..

IF YOU land up in Delhi from outside by train, the autos and taxis of Delhi may have unwelcoming surprise for you and for some it could be a nightmare. This happens to not only the one who is ‘not a Delhiites’ but with everyone. Delhiites have got used to it and can navigate with them and bargain. For a non-Delhiites, it could end up scaring them for a lifetime.

For example, at Nizamuddin railway station, one of the main railway stations of Delhi, there is no pre-paid service available for hiring taxi, which in effect means that you are at the mercy of the private taxi operators. One will have to bargain on the astronomical rates quoted by them. And if you ain’t aware of the routes, you are the one who may get ‘robbed’, a robbery for which you even cannot complain. This is not rare but a routine occurrence. For a taxi fare of Rs 100 by meter, you can end up paying something between three hundred to five hundred, that too if you are lucky. Pre-paid for auto rickshaw is available but that too for namesake. You can buy a pre-paid ticket but may not get an auto. But in case you are willing to pay their desired rate, which is more than double the normal fare, only then will they agree to move. Alternatively, in case you allow them to get one or two more unknown extra passengers on-board on the same auto then they may agree on your pre-paid price. Worst is - even if you complain to police personnel manning the pre-paid booths, they hardly listen except if you are real vociferous and can shout and make them hear.

Though there is a complaint number ‘painted’ on each auto but it is only for namesake. No one picks up the number, especially in the early morning and late night. This is the reality of the national capital of India - New Delhi, which is planning to host the prestigious commonwealth games in year 2010!