WONDER-KID LEADS “AIMING FOR OLYMPICS” MARATHON WALK:
Child prodigy Budhia Singh led a 500 km marathon walk on June 6 from Bhubaneshwar to Kolkata to create mass awareness for sports and games with the slogan “aiming for olympics.”
MAKE OVER FOR DILLI HAAT:
Dilli Haat, the capital’s unique market for crafts from across the country, is about to get a long needed makeover. New services will be added. ATM counters will be opened. A courier counter for shoppers to buy gifts and dispatch them to their friends anywhere across the globe is also planned. An art gallery, better seating space and a new look for the food plazas are also promised under the new plan.
LUXURY HERITAGE COACH FOR DELHI VISITORS:
Heritage coaches of The Royal Time Machine will soon be plying on Delhi’s roads. The idea is to take the traveler back in time to the grandeur of the Rajputs and the Mughals. The interiors are lined with sequined wall hangings and miniature paintings, silken cushions and ornate artifacts. Even the staff is outfitted in traditional attire. Travelers can watch a half-hour film on the kings who ruled the “City of Djinns”. The vehicles have been specially designed to give a lounge-line feel and are replete with a bar, kitchenette and a restroom. The morning tour covers the Red Fort, Safdarjung’s Tomb, and the Lodhi Gardens. The evening trip, which begins at 3 pm, has the Humayun’s Tomb, Lotus Temple and the Qutub Minar on the itinerary.
NOW FIVE STAR COMFORT ON A JUNGLE SAFARI TRAIN:
For jungle buffs not willing to rough it out, the Vidarbha Queen, an air-conditioned narrow gauge train to the Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve in Chandrapur district is just the thing. Billed as the country’s first jungle safari train, the Vidarbha Queen has ten luxury carriages and will make the 120 km run from Nagpur to Nagbhid, right to the doorstep of the Tiger Reserve (TATR), Maharashtra. It has six AC saloons and one non-AC saloon, a pantry car, and two guard’s cabins, all furbished with five-star interiors.
NOW TAKE A HELICOPTER TO THE SHRINES OF KEDARNATH AND HEMKUND:
Visitors to the holy shrines of Shree Kedarnath Dham and Shree Hemkund Sahib, Dehradun can now avail of helicopter services launched by Prabhatam Aviation.
REPLICA OF COVENT GARDEN IN JAIPUR:
The desert state has plans to redevelop its heritage properties, and particularly, Jaipur into a leisure and retail centre. A replica of the famed Covent Gardens in London will soon be set up in the Pink City, Jaipur.
PUDUCHERRY (EARLIER PONDICHERRY) PLANS A REPLICA OF EIFFEL TOWER:
On the other hand in a bid to retain its French connection and legacy, The Pondicherry (now called Puducherry) government is planning to construct a massive replica of the Eiffel Tower at Yanam, the territory’s enclave in Andhra Pradesh (about 900 km/560 miles from Pondicherry). The replica will be 100m tall and will weigh several tonnes.
SCENIC ROHTANG PASS OPENED ON MAY 10:
The snow-covered Rohtang Pass in Himachal Pradesh’s scenic Kullu Valley was thrown open to traffic on May 10 after remaining closed for over six months. The pass, located 55 km from the popular resort town of Manali (and 325 km from Shimla), is a popular destination for holiday- makers who throng the area in summer.
UB’S BREWERY IN MUMBAI TO BE CONVERTED INTO FLIGHT SCHOOL:
United Breweries is planning to close down UB’s brewery in Bombay and convert it into an aviation university, to cater to the growing talent requirements of Kingfisher Airlines. The University will have simulators and other training facilities for ATR and Airbus pilots. Dr. Vijay Mallya recently inaugurated a Kingfisher Training Academy in Mumbai. The academy will fine-tune skills of already trained professionals.
BELIEVE IT OR NOT, RIPLEY'S IN BANGALORE:
Ripley's Entertainment Inc. announced a tie up with Innovative Studios Pvt. Ltd. Bangalore to showcase collections from Ripley's Believe It or Not, Guinness World Records Museum and Louis Tussaud's Wax Museum in India. Exhibits will be displayed at the Innovative Film City here, which is expected to be thrown open to the public by this year end.
INDIA TOURISM SHOWS IN LONDON AND NEW YORK:
India plans to hold two mega shows in London and New York in September this year showcasing its rich culture and tourism potential as part of celebrations to mark India’s 60 years of Independence.
FIVE PORTS TO BE DEVELOPED AS CRUISE TOURISM HUBS:
With a view to encouraging high-end tourism in the country, the government has identified five ports viz. Mumbai, Mormugao, New Mangalore, Kochi in the West and Tuticorin in the East to be developed as cruise tourism hubs. Star Cruises and Indian Ocean Cruises as well as several international names have evinced an interest in the venture.
COCHIN TO BE A STOP OVER FOR WORLD’S PREMIERE VOLVO OCEAN RACE:
Volvo Ocean Race, the world's premier offshore ocean marathon, has plans to bring its 2008-09 event to India. Cochin Port will be the likely stopover on the new race route through West Asia and Asia. The race starts in Alicante, Spain, in mid-October 2008.
KASHMIR’S 109 YEAR OLD PRATAP SINGH MUSEUM ON UNESCO WATCH LIST:
The 109-year-old Sri Pratap Singh Museum situated along the banks of Jhelum in Srinagar has been placed on the UNESCO watch list. This implies the museum will now be promoted as a repository of rich cultural heritage as per a program sponsored by the United Nations agency for preservation of world heritage towards enhancing protection of movable cultural property under the UN Charter. This is one of the oldest museums of Kashmir and the largest in north India.
DARJEELING TEA ACCORDED GEOGRAPHIC INDICATION MARK:
Darjeeling’s brand equity has gone up several notches after its tea has been accorded the international GI (geographic indication) mark just like Champagne, Bordeaux and Tequila, which means its special qualities cannot be replicated or imitated. Gardens like Glenburn Tea Estate are organising helicopter charters “on request”. Tours involve plantation and factory visits and tea tasting. ‘Darjeeling tea’ will now be called “Darjeeling”.
GOLDEN GRASS HANDICRAFTS OF ORISSA:
Dried grass made from the stem of Khus Khus, which turns yellow and gold in colour, has been innovatively used to create decorative and daily household items by a group of Oriya women. Gaining popularity in their State, these items are now fast catching on in other places as well.
PRAY IN PEACE:
Thanks to the installation of a cell phone jammer, for the first time in a temple in Tamil Nadu, devotees can now pray in peace without any disturbance from ringing mobiles. The jammer is equipped to bar incoming and outgoing calls within a radius of 20 meters of the temple.
COOL FEET FOR TAJ VISITORS:
Visitors to the Taj Mahal will not have to burn their feet any more in the scorching heat with the authorities deciding to implant heat resistant tiles on the route to the main building of the monument. These special tiles will be 48 feet long.
HOLLYWOOD’S ARMOUR MADE IN INDIA:
Orlando Bloom and his Knights Templar fought a winning battle in ‘Kingdom of Heaven’. However, what the Hollywood’s Knights Templar did not know was that their mail and caps, which formed part of their armour, were made in India at Ghaziabad.
NEWS MEANS GOOD NEWS (International)
INCREDIBLE INDIA GIVES GODDESS DURGA A GRAND FAREWELL IN SYDNEY:
Artisans specially flown in from Bengal constructed a huge statue of Goddess Durga at an Art Gallery in Sydney. The Goddess was then taken in a farewell procession, in a beautifully decorated float, accompanied by dancers and musicians, through the city centre to be immersed in the Parramatta River. A bus, covered with the Incredible India message, led the party. A stop at Darling Harbour and another at Parramatta Park attracted huge crowds who participated in the merriment.
AEROSMITH ROCKS BANGALORE:
One of the greatest US rock and roll bands – Aerosmith enthralled fans who packed the Bangalore Palace Grounds to hear them play on June 2. This was their first concert in India held under the banner of “Bad Boys from Boston’.
‘THE WHISPERERS’ BAGS HOUSTON FILM FESTIVAL AWARDS:
Rajiv Virani’s ‘The Whisperer’s’ bagged two major awards at the 40th World Fest Houston International Film Festival. This Fest plays host to documentaries and feature films from the world over.
WORLD FUTURE COUNCIL HAS VANDANA SHIV ON COMMITTEE:
Renowned Indian environment campaigner, Vandana Shiva, has been elected as member to the World Future Council, a new body aiming to provide an ethical voice for the needs and rights of future life.
JAY GOYAL WINS OHIO “YOUNG DEMOCRAT OF THE YEAR AWARD”:
A 27-year old Indian American lawmaker has won the prestigious ‘Young Democrat of the Year” Award at the hands of the Ohio Governor at a glittering function held there recently. This award comes on the heels of another award he picked up recently “The Richland County Democrat of the Year Award”. Jay Goyal is currently the youngest member of the Ohio General Assembly.
Friday, June 15, 2007
WONDER-KID LEADS “AIMING FOR OLYMPICS” MARATHON WALK: