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My First Attempt On Scam Baiting Wednesday, 9 April, 2014

Posted by ~uh~™ in India, Internet, Out of the Box.
2 comments

Heavily inspired from http://www.419eater.com/, I tried my hand for the first time on reverse scam baiting. Unfortunately no response received as of yet !

(Please note the spelling and/ or grammatical errors are kept intact, including mine)

On Thursday, 27 March 2014 7:13 PM, “mariamark545@yahoo.com” <mariamark545@yahoo.com> wrote:

From: Mrs. Maria Mark

Email Address: mariamark545@yahoo.com

PHILIPPIANS – 4 v13 I Can Do All Things.

Good day

My name is Mrs. Maria Mark; I am a dying woman who had decided to donate what I have to the Charities. I am 51 years old and was diagnosed for cancer about four years ago, immediately after the death of my husband, I have been touched to donate from what I have inherited from my late husband for the good work rather than allow his relatives to use my husband’s hard earned fund.

As I lay on my sick bed, I want you to help me in carrying out my last wish on earth which will be very profitable to you. I want to WILL a total sum of $25million USD to you which I want you to distribute part of it to any charity home for me and the rest for yourself and your family which I will inform you on how to share all, please for further information contact me ASAP.

Regards,

Mrs. Maria Mark

My reply:-

From:”Anmol Anda”< anmolanda@in.com >
Date: 28 Mar 14 16:06:47
Subject: Re: 4 v13 I Can Do All Things [ANDA compensation policy intimation]
To: mariamark545@yahoo.com

= Om Shiri Ram Bhagwan=

Dear Mrs Maria Mark

I take this opportunity to thank you for writing an email to us.

It is very sad to note that you are dying from cancer. However we are only human and can not resist what has been decided by the almighty in our destiny. I sincerely hope with some Godly miracle you get well soon and live the rest of your life in a very healthy way.

Regarding you offer for the money which is left by your late husband i am afraid i can not accept such sum directly. I am myself involved in charity works here in my country India for the poor and needy. As per the Government regulation we can not incur any profit from the charity work that we do in poor villages of India. We run from the donation received in Indian money from the churches and NGOs operating in nearby areas. In case we get offer from money which is not in Indian Rupees we have to disclose such amount to our “Inland Tax Deduction Authority” who downright forfeit such amount and also legal recourse is initiated against the defaulters. In our country these inland tax rules are very strong and as a charity organization we cannot violate them.

On this context let me introduce myself. My name is Anmol and i work for a charity organization called “Almighty Neuron Distributor’s Association” (ANDA). We are supported by all the big hospitals and medical research teams of our country. What we do is we collect vital body parts from a dying person who are suffering from fatal diseases like cancer, leukemia, jaundice and green water tumor.People who have very less chance of survival, with their consent, we collect certain parts of their body and extract the neurons. These neurons are then stored medically and supplied to the needy and poor people. Though this is complete charity work, we do compensate the dying person or their next of kin as per the policy of our organization and Government regulation. Depending of the body parts that we collect, the compensation is determined by a governing body in our organization. Typically, for hair, nails and skin the compensation is around INR 600,000- 1200000 ( US$ 10,000-20,000), for other vital body parts like spleen, uvula, brain and intestines the compensation sum can vary between US$ 40,000- 65,000 or more. The amount can only be decided after a very detailed inspection of the medical history of the donor. In our policy the money is sent in advance after exchange of few formal documentation, consent agreement form to arrange for the body part donation which will be supervised by our empaneled doctor. from the date of money transfer the actual donation has to be withing 6 months. if the donor is still alive after 6 months, another extension is given for the body part donation. being a charity organization we cannot take back the money given as a compensation, so we have to wait. After 9 months we take the body part under strict medical supervision from the alive donor. The entire process is very painless. We have donors alive still after one year of donating their uvula and partial Hypothalamus. The only thing we ensure is that the money we donate is kept withing the family and spent for the welfare of the donor of his/her immediate family.

As you are dying and if you feel you do not have any chance of survival in 6 to 9 months, you can donate any suitable organ to our organization. It will be a very good deed for the humanity and we would be thankful to you Mrs Maria. I would request you to think over it and reply to me. If you are interested in our proposition, we can send you the consent agreement form and other documentation and arrange for our governing body to decide the compensation amount. Please also send an identity document to open an ANDA case file in your name. There are some other minor procedural formality which i will guide you in due course.

With the name of lord Rama, i wish you very best of health.

Jai jai Ram

Anmol

 [Unfortunately I did not receive any reply on my generous offer till date. Alas.]

 

Baul Gaan: Minstrels of Mystic Melody Tuesday, 29 September, 2009

Posted by ~uh~™ in India, Music, Soceity & Cultures, Videos.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
9 comments

This is the second video blog of the series on the context of Durga Pujo and traditional Bengali Culture. The first was on Dhak can be read here.

I have been influenced by Baul gaan since the very first time I have heard a song as a kid. It was a song by Purnadas Baul, the king of Bauls –

Piriti kathaler aatha lagle pore chhare na

Golemaale golemaale piriit koro na

(Love is like sticky juice of jackfruit, it’s too sticky to get rid of

So don’t fall in love when chanced within the perplexity)

I liked the song instantly, though understood the real meaning much later in life. Years later, I got the opportunity to listen to songs of Lalon Fakir and they left me mesmerized. In today’s world of religious divide and materialistic gain, his songs spoke about basics- truth, love and human soul. His songs were like a crack in the wall of my prison, which gave me a glimpse of another world where Icould never go, but wished to. However, Lalon Fakir is a subject in himself and before me; there was another dude who liked him- Rabindranath Tagore.

Khachar vitor, ochin pakhi kemne ashe jai!
Tare dhorte paarle mono beri, ditam pakhir paay.

(Look, how the strange bird flies in and out of cage!
If I could catch, I would bind it with my mind’s fetter)

Thus sang Lalon.

Amar praner manush Achhe prane tai heri tare sakal-khane.

Achhe se noyon-taray, Alok dharay tare na haraye ogo tai heri tare Jethaye sethaye

(The man after my heart lives inside me,

That is why I see him everywhere.

In the gaze of my eye, in the sparkle of light

Oh I can never lose him —

Here, there, everywhere,

Wherever I look, he is right there for me.)

Thus wrote Tagore.

The Baul philosophy of liberal love, life and music existed much before Woodstock happened. A Baul dejects himself from all material bonding, is a wanderer and travels with travels with his Bostomi, his lifemate. It was the Baul culture that made me realize that wearing torn jeans and smoking pot doesn’t mean liberty or being ‘hippiee’, there’s a force much deeper and larger, required to unbelong and love what you love. It’s a state of mind. The biggest expression of Baul philosophy is it’s music- which is melodious, memorable and highly influential. Baul music has inspired poets at home and lyricists and musicians across the globe, time and again. Undoubtedly, Baul gaan today can be considered as one of the influential contribution to World Music. Paban Das Baul’s [Facebook page ] album with guitarist Sam Mills called Real Sugar was released in 1997 featuring the heart-wrenching plea to Khoda, Dil ki doya, he became an instant celebrity on the world music circuit. [Ref link]

Traditional Bauls are conspicuous with there saffron or golden yellow robe, rudrakhsha bands,  long beards and  hair tied up in top-knot, the single stringed Ektara, the Dugi, the ghungroo and rustic melodious voice. Some of the musical instruments used by Bauls listed below [Ref link ], are featured on the video.

Musical Instruments used by the Bauls

Image found here

Ektara – A plucked single string drone – fingers and thumb are used.

Khanjani – A tabourine without jangles. [ Remember Dylan’s ‘Hey mister tambourine man……’ ?]

Khamak – A rhythmic instrument with one or two strings attached to the head of a small drum. The strings are plucked with a plectrum and they are alternatively tightened or slackened to generate an amazing array of rhythmic and tonal variations.

Mridanga or Khol – A barrel-shaped clay drum with two heads – sort of a combination of the baya and daina of tabla as described above.

Harmonium – A small keyboard instrument with hand-worked bellows – not unlike accordian. However, these days Harmoniums are replaced by Yamaha PSR i425 Keyboard.

Mandira or Kartal – Small bell-shaped cymbals, usually used in Bhajan/ Kirtans.

Ramchaki – A pair of wooden clappers with jangles.

The lyrics of Baul songs are mystic, often cryptic with deeper spiritual meanings hidden under witty wordings. Unfortunately, because the lyrics are deeply related to simple household terms contextual to rural Bengal, it is difficult to literary translate without distorting the theme.

For example, the song featured on the video “Rattir Belay Bou Amake Baba Bolechhe” literally means’ My wife addressed me as dad at night’ is one of the famous song.

I also have the video of the Piriti Kathaler Aatha ( Love is sticky like jackfruit juice) and ‘Jamai Nangta’ (the naked son-in-law), will upload at the next best opportunity.

I should stop here, before it looks like I am writing an essay on Bauls. Let me just conclude this post by adding some facts which might help updating the general knowledge for those who think Baul Gaan is just another form of folk music  –

1. Baul Gaan is listed under Performing Arts in  UNESCO’s Asia Pacific Database on Intangible Cultural Heritage.

2. Mention of Baul culture is found in texts as old as 15th century.

3. Baul philosophy of Syncretism is a subject of philosophical research. The Baul tradition is a mysterious fusion of elements from Buddhism, Saktism (worshippers of goddess Kali – the source of all energies), Vaisnavism (worshippers of Lord Visnu) and Sufi Islam, may well have its roots in the Tantrik Buddhism of Bengal in the 9th and 10th centuries.

4. Rabindranath Tagore was deeply influenced by Baul. His speeches and writings on baul has been compiled into a Book “The Religion of a Man”. Pous Mela (the traditional Bengal version of the festival of Holi) in Shantiniketan still celebrates the festival the traditional way. His song Amar praner manush Achhe prane was a tribute to his attachment to Baul music and Lalon Fakir.

5. A Baul can perform 3 or more musical instruments (the Ektara, the Dugi, the Khanjani and the ghungroo) simultaneously while singing and dancing. [See video]

6. I have seen Bauls using hitech gadgets like Casio keyboards and electric Ektara with pick-ups and portable speakers, even when performing in Kolkata suburban local trains (Sealdah South), for money.

7. Bob Dylan is probably a Baul in disguise.

Related reads for the interested mind-

Baul – Tagore on Bauls

The Bauls of Bengal

Punadas Baul Academy

Baul- The Folk Music of Bengal

Dhak: The Sound of Durga Pujo Monday, 21 September, 2009

Posted by ~uh~™ in Bengali, India, Videos.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,
10 comments

This is the first of the series about some of the cultural traditions of Durga Pujo. This year, at the onset of Pujo, I though of sharing some of my old videos.

The sound of Dhak is an inseparable element of Durga Pujo. When the Dhakis (the dummer) hit their sticks on the drum, the unique beat fills the air and creates an atmosphere of joy, mileu and harmony. The gradually rising tempo signifies the mood of the Pujo and the of euphoria of celebration . The video captures some  samples from my neighourhood Pujo in 2007.

Other noticeable features in the video include Uttam Kumar‘s portrait, the famous Apu- Durga train scene from Satyajit Ray‘s Pather Panchali, Jamini Roy‘s painting etc.

In the forthcoming posts I would to capture Dhunuchi Naach (the  special dance with the  Dhunuchhi), Baul Gaan and some more.

Wish you all a very joyous and memorable festive season !

On the context, I found this outstanding student animation work on you tube. by Rajesh Chakraborty, which captures the esssence of Durapujo beautifully. Loved the concept and artwork.

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