A tragedy that was fore-seen

As more details of the horrendous tragedy at a temple in Kollam, Kerala, India during fire works display that resulted in death of more than 100 people is coming out, it is becoming clear that it was a very well fore-seen and avoidable disaster.

An old woman living 25 meters away from the site had given a written complaint to the authorities asking them to ban fire works. She had mentioned that she is suffering from heart disease and cannot withstand loud sounds. She had also complained that her house regularly gets damaged due to this annual event.

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Temple fire works accident kills more than 80

Woke up this Sunday morning to hear the shocking news of death of more than 80 people in a fire works accident in my state of Kerala in India, around 170 miles from my town.

Temples in Kerala usually have big fire works display along with its annual festivities. Some temples will even have a fire works competition between two neighbourhood communities. Around 100 meters from my house also such a fire works display take place, though at a much smaller scale. Many of these explosive material are handled very carelessly and accidents do happen very often.

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Temples are  located in very populous areas and huge crowds throng during this time at the premises. Any minor fire can cause massive damage. Being an issue related to religion and tradition, safety concerns take a back seat. Human lives have low value when it comes to festivities related to god.

Does the mythical gods require such dangerous  fire works displays for them to bless us?

Let me condole this tragic loss of life, which might have been prevented if safety of human lives were given much more importance than the pomp and splendour of religious festivals.

 

End to age old gender discrimination in Lord Saturn temple

Finally it happened. Age old discriminatory practice of women being prohibited from entering the core area of Shani temple in Maharashtra in India ended today as activists were allowed to offer worship close to the deity.

hmednagar: Bhumata Brigade chief Trupti Desai offering prayer at the Shani Shingnapur temple after the gates were opened for women, in Ahmednagar on Friday, April 8, 2016. (PTI)

Bhumata Brigade chief Trupti Desai offering prayer at the Shani Shingnapur temple after the gates were opened for women, in Ahmednagar on Friday, April 8, 2016. (PTI)

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“They are asking me to pray for his recovery”

The other day one of my atheist  friend called me. The conversation went on like this.

Friend: “Doctor, I want you to take care of my son. I am bringing him to your hospital.”

Me: “Hey wait, that may not be a good move. Your city has much better facilities than mine. What happened ?”

Friend: “My son is admitted here for last 3 days with Dengue fever. He is not getting better. I feel the doctors here do not know their job. They are asking me to pray for his recovery. Any one who has studied science should know prayers are useless.”

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WHO confirms Zika GBS connection

The World Health Organization has confirmed that the available scientific evidence is strong enough to arrive at a consensus that Zika virus infection is indeed the cause for the recent increase in number of cases of  Guillain-Barré syndrome and foetal microcephaly.

Guillain-Barre  syndrome produces acute, usually ascending, flaccid paralysis of muscles and can be life threatening when it affects respiratory muscles, though most recover with prompt treatment.

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His pseudo science could not beat Diabetes

Today, April 7,  is the World health day and this year the World Health Organization is focussing on Diabetes. “Beat Diabetes” is the slogan and WHO aim is to increase the awareness on prevention and treatment of Diabetes throughout the world.

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Sadly the first news that I heard on this day was that of the demise of a 25 years old man in Kattappana in Kerala, India due to this disease. Unfortunately it is the lack of awareness in how to go about treating his Diabetes that resulted in this unnecessary loss of life.

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Highest number of judicial executions in 25 years

Though more and more countries are abandoning this barbaric method of punishment, it is shocking to know that in 2015 a record number of people were killed by judicial executions throughout the World.

According to Amnesty International at least 1634 persons were killed by judiciary in 2015, a figure which excludes China. It is believed that China executes maximum number of people but no data is available publicly. The sharpest rise in execution was in Pakistan were a moratorium on death penalty was lifted last year following the Islamist terror attack in a school.

 

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Immoral policing


You might have watched umpteen times couples sitting and chatting in a public park. You might have done it many times too. Have you, in your wildest dreams, ever thought you might be hauled up to the police station as a criminal for that, booked for it and summoned to attend court?

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