Month: January 2002



"We have not lost faith, but we have transferred it from God to the medical profession", said George Bernard Shaw. With such faith comes tremendous social responsibility which the noble profession of Medicine is supposed to carry. Practising physicians carry a huge responsibility on their shoulders as they must constantly update their knowledge to keep it current. But new challenges in the field of medicine are not making the task of physicians enviable. Fresh discoveries of both diseases and their antidotes are surfacing at an unbelievable speed.

We must give doctors their due though, as most of them keep learning as long as they practise. They do so by various methods like reading the latest books and journals, browsing the Internet etc. One important manner in which doctors keep their knowledge fresh and current is by participating in medical seminars.

Thane District Medical Practitioners Association (TDMPA) is an association of qualified doctors formed with the objective of spreading knowledge through interaction and to encourage healthy relationships between doctors. Communication is an extremely potent form of knowledge disbursement and TDMPA’s objective is to provide a platform for the same. TDMPA has also supported National Programmes like eradicating Polio, D.O.T for T.B, Leprosy, HIV and AIDS.

TDMPA celebrated its eleventh anniversary on January 13, 2002 at Gadkari Rangayatan. It was a function organized by the doctors and for the doctors!

Gracing the occasion was Dr. L.H. Hiranandani who is the first ENT specialist from India to receive the Padma Bhushan, the Dhanwantri Award and World’s Golden Award from International Federation of ENT. Dr. Hiranandani was recently honored as the ‘Surgeon of the Millennium’ by the Oto-Laryngologist & Head & Neck Surgeons Association of India.

Also present were other reputed physicians such as Dr. Deepak Amrapurkar, Dr. Sushil Shah, Dr. Amit Maydeo, Dr. Nagal and Dr. Samdani. Together with Dr. Hiranandani, they guided an audience comprising 700 doctors. The topics of discussions covered an entire gamut of medical matters ranging from liver disorders to pathological investigations in HIV/AIDS. Even topics like "Medical Ethics" were discussed.

Chief Medical Officer of Thane Municipal Corporation Dr. Munde felicitated the team of 40 doctors, who had worked relentlessly for the success of the function.

Any qualified medical practitioner can enroll as a member of the TDMPA. For further details, please contact Dr. M.P.Shah (President of TDMPA) on 536 9309.

Ticket Please
The population of Thane city has grown manifold during the last decade or so, but the public infrastructure has failed to match up. This has led to strange problems. Take for instance ticket counters at the railway station. Buying suburban train tickets is an uphill task for residents of Thane west, especially during peak hours and on public holidays. The coupon validating-machines lie useless as they are forever suffering a breakdown. This adds to the agony of the travelers who have to endure really long and serpentine queues.

But trust a few mavericks to figure out a solution. Like Dnyanesh Bhatavedekar who uses a guerilla tactic to beat the crowds. In times of extreme urgency, he buys his tickets from a solitary ticket counter on the East side of Thane station (Kalyan side), which is almost always deserted. At the risk of encountering a Ticket Collector Dnyanesh crosses over to the East side, using the Railway FOB. We must appreciate his bravado and honesty – at least he doesn’t travel ticket-less!

Food Fete

Food Fete

Food recipes are meant to be shared. And that’s exactly what they do at food festivals where people prepare variety of dishes and put them on display. In this respect, chefs and cooks can be easily compared with artists. Dione Lucas, cooking school teacher, television chef and cookbook author says, "The preparation of good food is merely another expression of art, one of the joys of civilized living."

January 11, 2002 was a joyful day for food lovers in Thane, when the 22nd Food Festival cum Cooking Competition was organised at CKP Hall. Over 500 people visited the exhibition which was organised by "Snehada" woman’s association, C.K.P Mahila Branch.

The event had over hundred and fifty items competing in four major categories. These four categories were Pungent, Non-vegetarian, Desserts and decoration. But the competition wasn’t as easy as it seems. There were rules to be followed. Like the desserts had to be prepared using only potatoes as the main ingredient. And the pungent category required contestants to prepare "khichdi" using only sprouted vegetables and rice.

So we had Potato cakes, Potato Gulab Jamun and Potato Sheera on display! The first prize winner of the desserts category was Shailaja Kulkarni for her extremely delicious Potato Gulab Jamuns. Smita Lanjkar, Sadhana Phadnse and Geeta Ravte were the winners in other categories.

Smt. Pramod Gupte, the president of Snehada says, "The items were judged on various aspects like taste, presentation, written recipe and spontaneity. So it is important that besides being delectable, the dish should look tempting and the recipe should be authentic and original."

Harriet Van Horne, a famous American writer once said, "Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all." Now we now that the secret behind the potato desserts is that all important ingredient – love.

Colorful Memories
At yet another function held recently, a different form of art was discussed. The function was held in appreciation and salutation of a book written by renowned painter L. R. Patole. Originally from Sholapur, Patole is based in New York since the last 30 years.

The function was jointly organized by Marathi Granth Sangralaya, a 108-year old library located behind Prabhat Talkies and Swarang Nirmiti, a publication project. The main speakers were eminent painter of Thane Jyotsna Kadam and Principal of Thane School of Art, Mrs. Neelima Kadhe.

The book is called "Athavancha Rangresha" or Colorful Memories. According to Makarand Joshi, secretary of Marathi Granth Sangralaya, "This book assumes significance as it is an extremely valuable and rare addition to the world of Marathi Literature. There are very few books written about Marathi painters and their art."

The book is autobiographical in nature (first-person narration) wherein the author relates various phases of his life, his paintings, the persons he met and the events that were responsible to lead him to the world of painting.

Pablo Picasso, one of the most celebrated artists of the twentieth century said, "Painting is just another way of keeping a diary". In other words, Patole’s book is actually based on his diary – his paintings.

Bypassing the Bypass

Bypassing the Bypass

Mark Twain said, "True love is the only heart disease that is best left to "run on" – the only affection of the heart for which there is no help, and none desired." But when the heart is plagued not by love but by excess cholesterol, emergency help is not only desired but is urgently sought!

A few days ago Dr. Nitu Mandke, one of the world’s leading cardiac surgeons was at Thane to speak about the new frontiers in conquering Heart disease. While delivering his speech, he said, "Ayurveda is the mother of all medical sciences. With its help, we can bypass the bypass surgery of the heart". According to Dr. Mandke Ayurveda has a historic significance and has been gaining immense recognition around the world. Research studies on Ayurveda and Yogic Sciences are being conducted in advanced countries such as America and Germany.

Dr. Mandke was here as a part of the delegation of reputed doctors from around Mumbai and Thane who had gathered at Gadkari Rangayatan to impart important information about heart disease to the ordinary, ignorant patients. Among the other doctors were Dr. Uday Kulkarni, Ayurveda Specialist and Dr. Satish Pathak from Ambika Yoga Kutir. Ayurveda Specialist Dr. Madhura Kulkarni and Sr. Journalist & former chief editor of Maharashtra Times Mr. Kumar Ketkar compered the show.

More than a thousand people attended the seminar, of which about eighty percent were suffering from one or the other heart ailment. Organized by Ayurveda and Panchkarma Centre of Thane, the seminar’s primary objective was to inform the public about how simple measures like lifestyle changes and dietary precautions can help prevent heart attacks.

During the seminar, a Cardiac Emergency Directory was circulated free among all attendees. The directory is extremely handy as it contains a map of Thane and contact numbers of all eminent cardiologists, ambulance numbers, blood banks, 24-hour chemists and scanning centers etc.

Most people are badly informed about heart diseases and its causes. In such a state of affairs, this effort of disseminating important information and providing useful guidance to the common people is really heartening.

Namesake confusion
Thane is a historic city and its present name is said to be derived from the word Sthan, the Capital of the Shilahara kings of Konkan. But when most people use the word "Thane" in Hindi, they refer to "Police Thane" or Police Station. This sometimes creates an awkward situation for Thaneites. Like it once did for Amit Arora.

When Amit was on a holiday in Punjab, his uncle asked him, "Where is your father?" to which he replied in all seriousness, "He’s in Thane". His uncle’s face turned pale and he asked him hesitantly, "Why, what happened?" Amit realized that the word ‘Thane’ had misled his Uncle to think that his father was at the Police Station. So he quickly clarified and saw his uncle relieved.

"What’s in a name?" asked Shakespeare. Well, he probably didn’t know then, that names have enormous capacity to generate confusion!

Healing Stars

Healing Stars

With allopathic medicine’s failure in dealing with a number of health problems, people are increasingly turning towards other therapeutic systems for respite. According to Dr. Uday Kulkarni, an Ayurvedic Specialist, "Allopathic medicine is heavily skewed in favour of physical aspect of healing, while completely ignoring the mental and physical aspects." It is to address this extremely important issue that a novel system of therapy, called "Rashi Prakalp", has been introduced at Pandit Deendayal Smriti Ayurveda Panchakarma Kendra in Thane’s Yeoor Hills.

The system relies on Nature and Astrology and uses the knowledge of zodiac signs and planetary aspects for curing patients. The concept took shape about one and a half years ago with specific trees being planted for each zodiac sign. Using special mantras, these zodiac trees were infused with powerful spiritual energy during plantation and growth.

Introduced for the first time in India, the "Rashi Prakalp" system works in tandem with Panchakarma, an ayurvedic method, which basically denotes detoxification or elimination of toxins from the body. The Panchakarma treatment consists of four basic forms, namely – medicine or drug therapy, pancha (five) karma (actions/systems), dietary regime and regulation of lifestyle.

"Rashi Prakalp" helps in the last one, namely, regulation of lifestyle. Patients with chronic depression or other psychosomatic diseases are asked to meditate under a designated zodiac tree. The vibrations of the tree act on the patient in a miraculous way to cure him/her of both mental and physical ailments.

Since its commencement in October last year, a number of patients from Thane have already found relief from the so-called incurable diseases such as arthritis and asthma. For more information, readers may contact Mr. Nandu Gore on 5451461 or Dr. Uday Kulkarni on 5433036.

Holy chants
The Bhagwad Gita is one of the three principal texts that define and capture the essence of Hinduism, the other two being the Upanishads and the Brahma Sutras. Bhagawad Gita means "Song of the God", is revered by Hindus for the infinite wisdom that it offers.

To make this wisdom available to residents of Thane, Bharat Sahakari Bank has organized a series of lectures called Gita Saar or the essence of Gita. Being held at Saraswati School (Naupada), Dr. Shankar Abyankar, a learned scholar from Pune, explains the real meaning of Gita to an audience of more than 3000 educated people.

The discourse begins with Deepa Parjavalan (lighting of a diya) followed garlanding of Lord Krishna’s picture and Dr. Shankar Abyankar by a well-known Thane resident. The series began on December 26, 2001 and will continue through January 13, 2002. All through the 90-minute lecture, there is pin-drop silence, while Dr. Abhyankar imparts wealth of spiritual wisdom to the audience comprising of the young and the old.

Thaneites are indeed fortunate, as those who have attended the lectures claim to have benefited tremendously. In times when war clouds are looming large over the world, Krishna consciousness is just what the peace doctors have prescribed.