Monthly Archives: October 2021

The Nubian Caravans

Fascinating documentary on the Nubian Caravans of Sudan.

Its actually quite a magnificent documentary on the harsh nomadic life of people in Sudan. It is presented in a narrative form with only one Doctor who studied in Romania talking about his tribe of people.

The documentary takes the viewers to Sinkat, the Hedendoa warriors, Sowakin, Jumna tribes, Bukhara tribes, Cassara mountains and the Rashida tribes. Each tribe has a different culture and tradition, some are pure nomads, some are settlers, some are rich, in terms of jewellery and some are rich Arabs who come from Saudi Arabia to purchase camels from here.

The camels also vary from one tribe to another, some camels are prized ones, some are fast, most are solid carriers of course. Water and vegetation is scarce in these parts, but where there is water body system, the marine life is rich in those parts.

The camera work and cinematography of the documentary is quite breathtaking to say the least. You can watch the documentary here.

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ageing Windies

I was shocked to see the West Indies side that took to the field in its first match against England side in the ongoing T-20 world cup cricket.

Shocked to see an ageing and tired side – Chris Gayle is 42 and deals only in boundaries and sixes, Then there is Dwayne Bravo and Keiren Pollard and Andre Russell, all were looking tired and lost on that day when they were bowled out for mere 55 runs. But the height of it was Ravi Rampaul, brought back to the international side after a 6 year hiatus.

What’s happening, where are the youngsters in the Windies side. T-20 as a format is suited for youngsters mostly as we have seen good catching and superb fielding wins matches for teams.

To be fair, some of the youngsters in the team do have a hope – Akeal Hosein took a spectacular catch and Nicholas Pooran is also a batter with immense potential. I have not watched much of Shimron Hetmeyer so will not be able any opinion on him. But i thought the selectors should have gone with young guns rather than these old guards.

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competitive Lankans

Nice competitive play by Sri Lanka against Bangladesh in the T-20 world cup.

When the Bangladesh team was batting the Lankan side looked dispirited and out of sorts against some disciplined batting by Bangladesh. Plus that fracas by Lahiru Kumaru against Liton Das early on.

And even while they were batting, with 79-4 it looked almost all but over, but for some disciplined hitting by two of their youngsters Charith Asalanka and Bhanuka Rajapaksa. A strong Sri Lanka side augurs well for the future.

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4.84 kms

4.84 kms evening run with the kiddo, weather was quite okay with clear skies. Have a great evening guys.

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5.12 kms

5.12 kms evening walk with the kiddo. Walking with the traffic is immensely stressful. But a good long walk nevertheless.

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telegraph right of way

The Central Government has notified the Indian Telegraph Right of Way (Amendment) Rules, 2021 on 21st October 2021 to incorporate the provisions related to nominal one-time compensation and uniform procedure for establishment of Overground Telegraph Line in the Indian Telegraph Right of Way Rules, 2016. The amount of one-time compensation for establishment of overground telegraph line will be maximum one thousand rupees per kilometre. Documentation for RoW application for overground telegraph line has been made simple. Also, there will be no fee other than Administrative fee and Restoration charges for establishing, maintaining, working, repairing, transferring or shifting the underground andovergroundtelegraph infrastructure.

These amendments will ease Right of Way related permission procedures for establishment and augmentation of Digital Communications Infrastructure across the country. With a robust pan India digital infrastructure, the digital divide between rural-urban and rich-poor will be bridged; e-governance and financial inclusion will be strengthened; doing business will be easy; information and communication needs of citizens and enterprises will be fulfilled; and ultimately the dream of India’s transition to a digitally empowered economy and society will be translated into reality.

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Hijack Stories

A powerful South African movie “Hijack Stories” (2000) directed by Oliver Schmitz and starring Tony Kgoroge, Rapulana Seiphemo, Moshidi Motshegwa among others.

Sox Moraka (Tony Kgoroge) is a young black South African kid from the upper class white neighbouhood who wants to become an actor in the mould of Wesley Snipes. He fails the audition because he is not able to get the intensity required to play a mobster.

Desperate he goes to Soweto his previous home and tries to integrate with the people over there in order to gain acceptance and learn the ropes. Finally he is sent to meet Zama (Rapulana Seiphemo) who happens to be his boy hood friend but who is now bitter that Sox has left them, left Soweto to be with the white people.

Zama agrees to let him in and Sox goes along with them in their errands. Sox also falls for a girl from Soweto, Grace (Moshidi Motshegwa) while already having a white girlfriend back home.

The real fun starts when they go on a real hijack trip and steal 10 cars and park them in the police compound. In the meanwhile Sox keeps on giving his auditions and each time he keeps on improving and on the last one before the hijacking trip, he gets accepted at the auditions.

Real twist in the story at the end with police chase and shootings and killings. Tony doing his debut has acted well and so has Rapulana but it is Moshidi who steals the show. IMDB 6/10

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investment advisors

SEBI mandate to the registered investment advisors that they should not deal in unregulated products including digital gold.

It is surprising that SEBI has not mentioned crypto currencies like bitcoins because i see advertisements being openly showed on the OTT platform for trading in bitcoins even though there is no regulation currently in place for bitcoins. So if the bitcoins are not officially allowed and it is not a legal tender or a security or a negotiable instrument or currency, then how come advertisements are allowed. There is one advertisement which asks people to deposit as low as Rs.100 in bitcoins and to do SIP in bitcoins. Frankly how many people know the real meaning of bitcoins. Its a dangerous territory and sooner that regulators wake up the better.

Copy of SEBI press release regarding digital gold given below.

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Oman ousted

So Oman’s out of the T-20 world cup.

It is difficult to see how a ragtag team of expat Indian and Pakistani cricketers will take the team to highs as expected of by its fans. In the absence of home grown talent, that will take a lot of time.

Scotland, on the other hand, impressed all by winning all 3 of their league games. I think they should be given official recognition by the ICC in the T-20 format, so that they can play with the big daddys and keep improving. I see a lot of potential there for Scotland.

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4.40 kms

4.40 kms for the morning. Weather is beginning to slightly better here in Mumbai, just about the beginning of the winter here. Have a great day folks.

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Geedka Nolosha

“Geedka Nolosha” or “Tree of Life” a brilliant Somalian short film directed by Abdulkadir Ahmed Said.

It shows a typical Somalian village with people going about their lives, women pounding the corn husks, gathering water from the river, children playing, cattle and fowl roaming about and a single nomad walking purposefully.

He goes deep into the forest and selects a good hardy tree to cut, obviously for the firewood for his village. He starts cutting, suddenly the birds and animals perk up, children look from their games, people stop to wonder what’s going on, the noise is reverberating throughout the village.

Then he finally brings the tree down, the animals scurry about fearfully, birds screech and fly up angrily into the air, people run about in fear, there is thunder and heavy rain follows.

Next shot is of the nomad in a desert – there is no vegetation, no forests, no plant life, no animals, no humans – its full of bleak and harsh desert. Interspersed are shots of heavy machinery cutting down huge trees with impunity.

Ending is the message, which is Tree of Life.

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4.21 kms

4.21 kms evening run with the kiddo. Today strangely less traffic than usual or maybe we started a bit earlier than normal. Have a great evening folks.

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penalty on payment system operators

RBI has imposed huge penalties on two payment system operators viz. Rs.10 million penalty on Paytm Payments Bank limited for not disclosing proper information to the authorities as per section 26(2) of the Payment & Settlement Systems Act. Another penalty of Rs.27,78,750/- on Western Union Financial Services Inc. for non compliance with certain provisions of RBI Master Directions on Money Transfer Service Scheme (MTSS).

What exactly is the nature of non compliance in case of Western Union is not specified but newspaper reports suggest that it is for breaching the ceiling of 30 remittances per beneficiary in the last two years.

You can read the RBI press release here.

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The Empire in Africa

Deadly documentary on the civil war in Sierra Leone which killed thousands of people, amputated and maimed hundreds of its citizens including children as young as two and three.

The documentary starts with the peace accord between President Kabbah and the RUF Commander Foday Sankoh following years of fighting between them. Its all confusing as ECOWAS got involved with ECOMAG forces led by Nigerians who were immensely disliked by the Sierra Leonians.

The locals got fed up with the corruption in the government with majority of the mineral riches in the hands of the foreign corporations. The country has plenty of diamonds and De Beers is the major player there.

Some of the scenes and footages in the documentary is disturbing to say the least with tortures and killings being shown. I don’t understand what kind of force would want to amputate young kids. It was terrible. Atrocities were committed by the army as well as RUF forces and also the ECOMAG force.

Very sad commentary on the state of affairs of a poor nation in Africa. You can watch the documentary here.

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Oman falters

Oman cricket team is almost full of expat cricket players from India and Pakistan. That’s an eye opener because being team mates, both Indian and Pakistani players have to jell well, play as a team, bond together, smile and encourage each other.

Which would be an anachronism if you ask ordinary Indian or Pakistanis to do the same to each other. Its an eye opener – bringing rivals together in a team would solve many of the acrimonious issues plaguing both the nations. Food for thought.

Anyways, Omani players had buttered fingers in the beginning, as they dropped as many as three catches, and as they say in cricket, catches win matches, those three drops, proved too much for them.

Mohammad Naim (pictured above) controlled the proceedings for Bangladesh and with a good score on board, bowlers did the rest.

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