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From Afrojack to KSHMR: Road To ULTRA returns to India in Mumbai on April 14

ULTRA Worldwide, the celebrated international music festival brand, will make its return to Indian shores with its signature event series, Road To ULTRA. Following the thumping success of the last India edition, in 2017, the Indian electronic music community will finally get a chance to revel in the unparalleled ULTRA experience this summer. The stadium-smashing line-up includes multi-award-winning and platinum-record-selling artist Afrojack, who will rattle the dancefloor with his high octane set energy-boosting sound, as well as DJ Mag’s #12 DJ in the world KSHMR, who is renowned for mesmerising audiences with his uplifting melodies. The line-up also adds James Hype to its stacked billing, as he is one of the UK’s most hyped musical exports and will be making his India debut at the single day events. The trio will be supported by a plethora of stellar global acts such as Dutch electronic stars Cesqeaux and Chico Rose, ULTRA veteran MYKRIS as well as bubbling regional artists Siana Catherine and Teri Miko who will each be taking to the decks for a pulsating performance. Road To ULTRA: India will kick off in Mumbai on 14th of April 2023, followed by a second show in Bengaluru on 15th of April 2023, with both showcases featuring the same stacked line-up of globe-trotting DJs and performers. Marking the festival’s second edition, Road To ULTRA: India has previously gathered more than 50,000 attendees and showcased performances from superstar acts like The Chainsmokers, Rezz, Sam Feldt, and Slushii. For this year’s edition, Road To ULTRA: India will showcase consecutive, daylong marathon events featuring some of the hottest names in electronic music, mesmerizing stage designs and all-encompassing entertainment experience for audiences.  The complete line-up for Road To ULTRA India will be announced soon. Pre-sale tickets can be bought at Also Read: I am bored of playing Animals: DJ Martin Garrix

24 March,2023 06:27 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Bombay Jayashri Ramnath. Photo Courtesy: Midday File Pic

Bombay Jayashri Ramnath stable after health setback in UK

Singer Bombay Jayashri Ramnath suffered a "health setback" in the UK, her spokesperson said on Friday. According to the statement posted on the renowned singer's Instagram Stories, Jayashri Ramnath, who is in country for a music tour, received "timely medical intervention" from the National Health Service (NHS) and is currently "stable". "Bombay Jayashri had a health set back in the United Kingdom where she is currently touring for her concerts. She received timely medical intervention thanks to the capable staff at the NHS and her accompanying artistes. "She is currently stable and recovering well, she requires rest for a couple of days," the statement read.The Padma Shri-awardee's family requested privacy and urged her fans to ignore the "messages circulating on social media platforms". "Bombay Jayashri's family requests privacy and your support during this period. We shall update you in due course. Requesting all to ignore messages circulating on social media platforms Thank you for your support," the statement concluded. Jayashri Ramnath, who is in her 50s, is known for singing songs in multiple languages including Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam and Hindi.Some of her most memorable songs include "Partha Mudhal" from 2006 Tamil movie "Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu", "Yaaro Manathile" from 2008's "Dhaam Dhoom", "Zara Zara Behakta Hain" from the movie "Rehnaa Hai Terre Dil Mein" and "Pi's Lullaby" from Ang Lee's film "Life of Pi". Also Read: From Afrojack to KSHMR: Road To ULTRA returns to India in Mumbai on April 14   This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/ reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

24 March,2023 06:12 PM IST | Mumbai | PTI
Image for representational purposes only. Photo Courtesy: iStock

Echoes of Earth music festival comes to Mumbai on April 15

India-wide release, 23rd March 2023: After the successful Bangalore edition last year on its home turf, India’s greenest music festival, Echoes of Earth, is now making its way for the first time ever to the metro cities of Delhi and Mumbai along with Bangalore, the event’s home turf by bringing forth the 'Echoes of Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi'. As a 3-city concert India tour with a single-stage concert format, the event will be a one-day affair in each city, offering the unparalleled experience of Echoes while highlighting each city’s local ecosystems. British nu jazz collective, The Cinematic Orchestra will be touring all the three cities.The 3-city concert India tour will begin from Bangalore 14th April, Mumbai 15th April and culminates at Delhi on 16th April. The event will take over each city to foster awareness about issues related to diverse ecosystems unique to these cities via art forms, ranging from workshops, art spaces, and interactive installations to food, flea markets, and more. Through its unique format, the concert envisions focusing on education and celebrating these urban ecosystems through powerful art and music, connecting with the audience, and starting important, inclusive conversations about the need for their conservation and sustainability.Furthermore, the event will also serve as a platform for experts to deep-dive into the wealth of environmental diversity in the most prominent ecosystems across the three cities through various talks and panel discussions. At the same time, Echoes will also lend a voice to powerful human-impact conservation and restoration stories and struggles of local communities and ecowarriors whose positive human interventions are actively aiding in preserving these ecosystems at a grassroots level.The festival will culminate in a music performance by the British nu jazz collective, The Cinematic Orchestra, celebrating the Earth and enthralling the audience through the evening.Festival director Roshan Netalkar said, “When we think about biodiversity, we rarely picture cityscapes. However, urban areas are home to multitudes of ecosystems and natural wealth, hosting rich biodiversity. We are an intrinsic part of nature, and yet we know very little about it. Through the 3-city concert India tour, we aim to support the audience in exploring their local natural environment and put it at the heart of urban life.”He further added, “Echoes of Earth offers a unique experience of coming together as a community to celebrate the Earth responsibly through music, art, and environmental workshops. The 3-city concert India tour will reflect this ethos while allowing room for more sustainable conversations to take place pan-India.” Also Read: From Afrojack to KSHMR: Road To ULTRA returns to India in Mumbai on April 14

24 March,2023 03:09 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Image for representational purposes only. Photo Courtesy: iStock

Use social media in these 10 ways to unlock your creative potential

With the advent of digitalisation, chances are that you have one or more accounts on social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat. Scrolling has become a lifestyle and almost everyone around you is habituated to consuming scours of content they see on these platforms. So, do you identify yourself as a consumer or a creator? The year is 2023 and everybody sees social media as this clown cousin whose only aim in life is to waste your time. However, if used wisely (and in moderation), social media can offer unique opportunities for creativity that were once unimaginable. Midday Online spoke to Mousumi Mishra, Head of Consumer Marketing, ShareChat and Moj to learn about various ways social media can widen your creative horizons: Discover new trends     In order to be creative, it’s important to stay relevant. Social media provides great exposure to the latest trends and styles, which you can use to broaden your creative ecosystem. Example: The video of "Kacha Badam" went viral on social media and sparked a global trend, with numerous artists recreating it in their own unique styles. Similarly, "Bachpan ka pyaar" also became a successful internet trend after gaining popularity through various adaptations by different creators. Learn new processesSay goodbye to “I wish I knew this process earlier; it would have made my job a lot easier” and hello to the amazing learning opportunities that social media provides, which you can use to optimize your everyday creative process. Example: One doesn't necessarily need a tutor or coaching; one can find quick videos from experts who share their knowledge and advice by searching for pertinent hashtags on social media apps, such as #exceltricks or #interviewtips. Get genuine feedbackReal time feedback on your ideas from a wider range of audience is one of the USPs of social media. It can also help you give directions if you’re stuck on a thought and need to figure out the next step. Find your inspirationMillions of people share snippets of their life every day through social media. With such varied information about different cultures, interests and stories readily available, inspiration for your next big idea could just be a click away. Example: An aspiring fashion designer could browse through short video apps and find inspiration for their next collection by looking at what other designers are creating or what styles influencers are wearing. Sharpen your perspectiveFor creativity, it’s important to gain insights and perspectives outside your own ideologies and thought processes. Sometimes it’s also important to understand opposing viewpoints to drive your imagination, and social media allows you that space. Collaborate with fellow creatorsSocial media provides you with the opportunity to connect with other creative minds without the constraints of geographical boundaries. Together you can rehash an old idea or work towards building a new project, all while learning from each other. Example: Let's say a movie studio is releasing a new romantic comedy and wants to promote the song from the film's soundtrack. They could create a hashtag challenge on a short video app, encouraging users to create videos of themselves dancing to the song with the hashtag #MyRomanticComedyDance. To make the challenge more enticing, the studio could offer a prize, such as a meet-and-greet with the film's stars, to the user who creates the most creative and engaging video. The studio could also work with influencers to participate in the challenge and help promote it to their followers. This helps the movie song to become popular within a couple of days. Learn from the expertsThe who’s who of all industries now has a social presence. Social media allows a medium to stay updated about their work and aids in learning from the best. Example: Watching cooking tutorial videos on social media apps can teach quick and easy food tricks shared by chefs and home cooks, providing an opportunity to learn from experts with extensive knowledge. Social media platforms offer a convenient and accessible way to access food-related content, which can inspire new ideas and techniques to improve cooking skills. Find new ways to expressIt’s important to find your own voice and style when it comes to creativity. Explore new methods and formats of expression that social media has to offer and keep experimenting. Instant GratificationWhile this may be debatable, a little appreciation goes a long way. Social media provides instant gratification for your work, and once people appreciate your creativity, it motivates you to level up every time you pick a new project. Taking a BreakWhenever you hit a creative block, it’s important to take a break. Social media provides ample options for that distraction (mostly cat videos), will make you laugh (again cat videos) and also give you a break from the routine so that you can have fresh ideas once you resume your work. Also Read: 

24 March,2023 09:37 AM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Namita Haibat has put up the 'Gudi' in her house (left); Amogh Golatkar is busy with lunch at his home in Dadar. Photo Courtesy: Namita Haibat/ Amogh Golatkar

Gudi Padwa 2023: Mumbaikars are celebrating with food, family and festivities

After almost three years since the Covid-19 pandemic took over the world, Mumbaikar Namita Haibat is excited to bring in Gudi Padwa with her family for more than one reason. "This year is special since my son will be celebrating it with the entire family for the first time. We plan an 'Abhyanga Snan' for him, followed by puja rituals, hoisting the 'Gudi' in his favorite color cloth, and a family lunch," she shares. Every year, the city comes alive to celebrate Gudi Padwa, the traditional New Year celebrated by Maharashtrians not only in India but around the world. This year, it is being celebrated on March 22. While Mumbaikars usually celebrate it with their family and friends, it has been difficult to have extravagant celebrations due to the pandemic-induced lockdown. However, now that everything is mostly back to normal and people can visit each other, they are leaving no stone unturned in making the most of the day and Haibat is one of them. "Covid or no Covid, festivals have always been a significant part of all our lives. However, having the extended family and friends come together on festive occasion adds more colour, which was greatly missed during Covid," says 37-year-old Haibat, who echoes the sentiment of many Mumbaikars in the city. When one talks about celebrations in India, they are incomplete without food, so once traditions are done, everybody is excited to enjoy the different delicacies, and it's no different in Haibat's home. "Gudi Padwa for us has always been the special homemade shrikhand- puri and kothimbir vadi as a tradition. Not to forget the bitter neem prasad and sweet gathi (garland of sugar) with a reminder from grandma about the good and bad in life," shares the Andheri resident ahead of the celebration. Play Quiz: How much do you know about Maharashtrian festival Gudi Padwa Elsewhere in the city, it is no different for Vaishnavi Merchant, who will enjoy the festival by eating puran poli and modaks, after starting her celebration by visiting the temple like she does every year. Residing in South Mumbai's Girgaum, she woke up eagerly waiting to see various traditions unfold in her neighbourhood. "I am excited to attend the Gudi Padwa Shobha yatra at Girgaum." Gudi Padwa rally at Girgaum this morning. Photo Courtesy: Pradeep Dhivar This is before she goes to meet her friends and relatives throughout the day. “During the Covid-19 lockdown, I couldn’t meet friends and relatives, so video calling was the only way out. This year, I am going to meet all of them," shares an excited Merchant. While the Girgaum resident is looking forward to celebrating the festival with family and friends, Amogh Golatkar has different reasons. The Goan who is currently in Mumbai pursuing his higher studies is excited to witness how the city celebrates Gudi Padwa. In fact, he is already at his relative's home in Dadar. “Dadar’s flower market was brimming with a crowd when I visited this morning to buy some flowers for offerings to God.” Hailing from the southern state, they celebrate Gudi Padwa at home and it is going to be quite similar at his relative's home in Mumbai. He shares, “When it comes to food, my family has a simple and traditional Maharashtrian thali, that includes, varan bhaat (dal-rice), batatyachi bhaaji (potato sabji), and my favourite modak along with some papad ofcourse." Like Haibat, Sumit Dandekar is another Andheri resident who missed stepping out for festivals during the pandemic. The day started by waking up early to perform puja and then visiting the temple. Decorating the house with garlands and raising the ‘gudi’ outside the window is a yearly ritual for the Dandekar family. Just like many other Indians, ahead of his meal, he shares, “Gudi Padwa for my family is incomplete without the soul-satisfying shrikhand puri.” It is a feeling that was missed to a great extent in the last three years but is now back to the old days. “Now it feels like a festival season. During the lockdown, every day felt the same even on festival days. This year things are different," says Dandekar, setting the tone for Gudi Padwa this year. Also Read: Gudi Padwa 2023: Nutritionist shares tips on eating healthy

22 March,2023 04:00 PM IST | Mumbai | Nascimento Pinto | Aakanksha Ahire
Image used for representational purpose. Pic/iStock

Ramadan 2023: Ramadan date, time in India? Complete schedule for the holy month

The excitement for the month of Ramadan is already here with millions of Muslims preparing for what it has often been described as the holy month in Islam. Most importantly, this month is observed as a month of fasting, prayers, community and reflection. In India, Ramadan is expected to begin from March 23 and will end on April 21. However, all these timings and dates are subject to moon sighting. Here’s the list of Sehri and Iftar time in Mumbai:   Also read: Your guide to nutritious eating and weight loss during Ramadan Sl. No Day Sehar Dhuhr Asr Iftar Isha 1 24, Fri 05:27 AM 12:46 PM 04:09 PM 06:51 PM 08:04 PM 2 25, Sat 05:26 AM 12:45 PM 04:09 PM 06:51 PM 08:04 PM 3 26, Sun 05:25 AM 12:45 PM 04:08 PM 06:52 PM 08:05 PM 4 27, Mon 05:24 AM 12:45 PM 04:08 PM 06:52 PM 08:05 PM 5 28, Tue 05:23 AM 12:44 PM 04:08 PM 06:52 PM 08:05 PM 6 29, Wed 05:23 AM 12:44 PM 04:07 PM 06:52 PM 08:06 PM 7 30, Thu 05:22 AM 12:44 PM 04:07 PM 06:52 PM 08:06 PM 8 31, Fri 05:21 AM 12:43 PM 04:06 PM 06:53 PM 08:06 PM 9 01, Sat 05:20 AM 12:43 PM 04:06 PM 06:53 PM 08:07 PM 10 02, Sun 05:19 AM 12:43 PM 04:06 PM 06:53 PM 08:07 PM   11 03, Mon 05:18 AM 12:43 PM 04:05 PM 06:53 PM 08:07 PM 12 04, Tue 05:17 AM 12:42 PM 04:05 PM 06:54 PM 08:08 PM 13 05, Wed 05:16 AM 12:42 PM 04:04 PM 06:54 PM 08:08 PM 14 06, Thu 05:15 AM 12:42 PM 04:04 PM 06:54 PM 08:08 PM 15 07, Fri 05:14 AM 12:41 PM 04:04 PM 06:54 PM 08:09 PM 16 08, Sat 05:13 AM 12:41 PM 04:03 PM 06:55 PM 08:09 PM 17 09, Sun 05:13 AM 12:41 PM 04:03 PM 06:55 PM 08:09 PM 18 10, Mon 05:12 AM 12:41 PM 04:02 PM 06:55 PM 08:10 PM 19 11, Tue 05:11 AM 12:40 PM 04:02 PM 06:55 PM 08:10 PM 20 12, Wed 05:10 AM 12:40 PM 04:01 PM 06:56 PM 08:10 PM   21 13, Thu 05:09 AM 12:40 PM 04:01 PM 06:56 PM 08:11 PM 22 14, Fri 05:08 AM 12:40 PM 04:00 PM 06:56 PM 08:11 PM 23 15, Sat 05:07 AM 12:39 PM 04:00 PM 06:56 PM 08:12 PM 24 16, Sun 05:06 AM 12:39 PM 03:59 PM 06:57 PM 08:12 PM 25 17, Mon 05:05 AM 12:39 PM 03:59 PM 06:57 PM 08:12 PM 26 18, Tue 05:05 AM 12:39 PM 03:58 PM 06:57 PM 08:13 PM 27 19, Wed 05:04 AM 12:38 PM 03:58 PM 06:58 PM 08:13 PM 28 20, Thu 05:03 AM 12:38 PM 03:58 PM 06:58 PM 08:14 PM 29 21, Fri 05:02 AM 12:38 PM 03:57 PM 06:58 PM 08:14 PM

22 March,2023 10:51 AM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
The cover of the book 'Paani Party'

Water Keepers: A new illustrated book wants to teach children the value of water

The concern in nine-year-old Aryan’s voice is clear when his grandfather tells him that there are many people in the world who don’t have access to clean water. “Can we do something to change it?” he asks. Indeed there is a way, the grandfather  points out wisely — we can start by being grateful for what we have and by acknowledging how blessed we are. “We are often so busy rushing from one thing to another that we forget to look at the miracles that exist around us and within us. If we focus on the miracles, we will learn to value every drop of water on the planet.” This wholesome conversation unfolds between the protagonists of a new children’s illustrated book, ‘Paani Party’, published by The People Place Project. Authored by Minaz Ansari, the book focuses not only on water conservation, it also stresses on discovering the indispensable value of water and on building a more meaningful relationship with the precious resource. “If a child or any reader can build a relationship where they see the value of every glass of water they consume, then it is going to automatically lead to conservation and taking care of our water bodies and everything related to it,” hopes Ansari, who is also an architect working in Mumbai.  Telling tales about water The context in which the book was written dates back to a year ago. ‘Mumbai Water Narratives’ started last July as a platform to curate and host stories on the city’s water heritage, cultures, and practices. Led by Dr. Sara Ahmed, founder of the Living Waters Museum and a member of the Global Network of Water Museums, it documents Mumbai’s dynamic water journey.  The initiative launched its first virtual exhibition ‘Confluence’ in March 2021 to capture Mumbai’s multilayered relationship with water -- from its rivers to its shores, from the tanker economy servicing high-rise apartments to the everyday water problems. “As part of the Mumbai Water Narratives, we were collecting various stories of water and trying to target audiences of various age groups,” says Ansari. “That’s when we thought of creating a picture storybook for children so that we could reach out to the future water keepers of Mumbai and all over the world.” An illustration by Priyanka Lele from the book 'Paani Party'. Photo courtesy: Minaz Ansari Although the book gives a very significant and serious message, Ansari didn’t want it to be preachy. “I wanted it to be playful, fun and joyous.” She believes that children are extremely influential because most importantly they are not cynical like adults, and therefore they can imagine a better world. That’s also why she chose to pass down knowledge on this important topic from a child’s perspective.  Illustrations by artist Priyanka Lele play a big role in this book. “She [Lele] was involved from the point we said that this story needs to be converted into a book,” shares Ansari. First they decided the layout of the book and then the themes which needed to be shown through illustrations to be able to convey the city’s context better. “Small things like ‘what would the house look like’? It has got these wooden old windows, so it could be one of those old wadis in Girgaon Chowpatty,” the author notes. “There are many scenes which are related to fantasies where the child is imagining different forms of water and even different forms of rain,” she says. The book blends factual data with very colourful illustrations about different forms of water — all with the intention that the child be fascinated by the wonders of water. How to raise a future water keeper Apart from the language being simple, Ansari says the text and illustrations have been carefully interspersed to allow young readers to imagine what the story is trying to narrate. The author also felt that it was important to convey and portray a child’s point of view, especially during the lockdown. “The book was written at the beginning of the lockdown. I could see children being extremely bored and frustrated being locked inside their houses,” says Ansari. “During this time, families got to spend time with each other and some of them got really close to each other. So, this book also highlights how the relationship between the grandfather and the child changed during the lockdown.”  Author Minaz Ansari (left) and illustrator Priyanka Lele She says, “Children have a lot of power to influence their family as well.”  A few years back, she was involved with a no plastic campaign and children were the ones who managed to convince their parents and refused the usage of plastic bags. “We never needed to tell them that, they did it on their own. Children have a lot of power in bringing about change.” She also feels each of us as teachers, parents and caregivers of children need to create a kind of water wisdom in children and the youth. “Once we value something, we take care of it. It’s as simple as that. That’s the whole thought behind this book.” Also Read: UAPA has become an instrument to jail dissenters for years without any trial: Fr Stan’s lawyer

21 March,2023 05:32 PM IST | Mumbai | Anuka Roy
Image for representation: iStock

Nutrition tips for Ramzan: How to healthfully navigate fasting in the holy month


The holy month of Ramzan brings with it a great deal of devotion, strength, discipline, and patience. The devout fast the entire day, not eating or drinking anything from sunrise till sunset. Fasting during the hot summer days can be extremely challenging. “Considering the long fasting duration of this month we must keep in mind that avoiding dehydration is paramount, hence it is advised that during the eating hours of the day people should concentrate on hydrating themselves with adequate fluid intake, heavy protein intake, and having food items like veggies and fruits which are rich in fiber and vitamin as opposed to greasy and heavy food which can cause gut health issues during the fasting hours of the day,” says Aayushi Lakhapati, certified Nutritionist and co-founder at UpNourish, a health and wellness brand. It is equally important to note that by following simple measures, Ramzan fasting can very well help you decrease blood pressure and cholesterol. However, overindulging at iftar (the meal eaten after sunset) and sehr (the meal eaten before dawn) can make you feel bloated and eventually result in weight gain. There are other nutritional aspects that one should consider during the holy month too. “If we view things from the nutritional point of view, the fasting of Ramzan follows the same structure as intermittent fasting patterns. This pattern of eating can help the body go through a major cleansing process and also help in burning fat. The body goes through a natural detoxification process if the fasting is executed properly. While we talk of its advantages, we must also keep in mind that people with health conditions like diabetes, hypertension, and metabolic disorders must pay additional attention to their nutritional intake during the fasting period of Ramzan. Restricting one’s food intake during the day and continuously being on a calorie-controlled diet can make a metabolic shift and aid weight loss, and manage high blood pressure and sudden rise or fall in blood sugar levels. It also gives a major boost to the immune system”, adds Lakhapati. Along with that, people with diabetes who follow Ramzan need to take extra care and precautions when it comes to fasting. It is crucial for them to manage diabetes whilst fasting, which would require them to follow a proper diet routine and monitoring to control their blood sugar levels. Dr Jothydev Kesavadev, chairman and managing director of Jothydev’s Diabetes Research Centre explains, “Diabetes is a condition that requires regular monitoring and ensuring that your blood glucose levels are in the normal range and minimising fluctuations as much as possible. During Ramzan, people with diabetes need to be constantly monitored as they are fasting for more than 10 to12 hours.” Owing to technological advancements today, there are at-home continuous glucose monitoring devices that allow diabetic patients to monitor their 24-hour glucose profile. These systems are convenient, accessible, compact and user friendly. These wearables are not just prick free but also provide real-time glucose readings, showcasing the glucose trend during the times of iftar and sehr. While the Ramzan fast is accompanied by a whole range of health benefits, it can backfire if one does not eat mindfully during the non-fasting hours of the day which can further result in severe health issues like sleeplessness, frequent headaches, acidity, gut issues, indigestion, and a lack of nutrition in the body. Having a balanced diet and following a healthy lifestyle during the fasting period is equally important. Below, both experts outline some useful tips for fasting during Ramzan. Start with carbs Starting the iftar meal with food rich in simple carbohydrates can be absorbed quickly by the body such as 2 to 3 dates or milk, followed by complex carbohydrates like brown rice and chapatis. End with protein and keep sugar levels in check During sehr, one can consume whole grain cereal, vegetables and take it as late as possible. Alternatively, one can opt for lean proteins like nuts, fish and tofu as they provide energy. Finally, a glass of milk or fruit before bedtime will help maintain sugar levels till early morning. Exercise Routine Aim to keep up with your exercise routine but reduce the intensity of workouts while fasting. If training is too difficult, one can focus on walks or gentle exercises like yoga. Resistance training can help prevent muscle loss when in a calorie deficit during Ramzan.  Sleep Patterns It’s important to get enough sleep. Sleep deprivation can impact hunger hormones, which makes it harder to resist large volumes of high-calorie foods during the eating window. Sleep is also important for the metabolic process, which has been shown to facilitate blood glucose regulation that is essential for diabetes management. Drink plenty of water Whilst fasting throughout the day, the unavailability of water can take a toll on one’s health. The hot weather and high temperatures make us sweat more which results in a loss of body fluids. Drinking plenty of water, at least 10 glasses, between the times of iftar and sehr is of utmost importance to replenish what has been lost during the fasting period. Eat hydrating foods Adding foods that are hydrating in nature such as watermelon, cucumber, and tomato helps bring water value to your body as well. Fruits like watermelon have natural sugars and hence do not pose any kind of harm to a diabetic patient, which allows them to enjoy it as an iftar sweet treat. Avoid Caffeine Drinks like tea, coffee, cola that are highly caffeinated should be avoided during fasts because they lead to a lot of dehydration. Aerated drinks will not only make you feel dehydrated but also add unnecessary calories to your diet.  Moderation is key Sweets should be taken in moderation. It is not advisable to consume food that is rich in oil and sugar as it can spike blood sugar levels after not having consumed anything during the day. People should keep their focus on what and how much to eat rather than when to eat to help them curate a balanced and healthy meal plan for the month of Ramzan. Fasting with diabetes? People with diabetes should open their fast with food items containing good quality fat and no refined sugar. Consuming refined sugar can cause insulin spikes creating a glucose-insulin imbalance throughout the day. Things like nuts, coconut, or simply the addition of one teaspoon of ghee can help maintain the glucose-insulin balance. Taking care of your gut while fasting People facing gut issues like acidity and bloating should hydrate themselves properly and eat smaller portions during the non-fasting hours of the day. They must avoid heavy, fat-laden food, spicy food, and processed food as these types of items not only lack nutritional benefits but also make one feel hungry sooner.

21 March,2023 01:34 PM IST | Mumbai | Maitrai Agarwal
India is in the 136th position on the World Happiness Index. It is the fourth least happy country in the world. Photo Courtesy: iStock

India ranks behind its neighbours in World Happiness Index: United Nations

Stress is an inevitable part of our lives. There is hardly anyone today who is stress-free and it majorly impedes happiness in our lives. Challenging careers, cutthroat competition, familial issues, health complications, inflation, and many other factors cost us our happiness. As of 2022, out of 146 countries, India is in the 136th position on the World Happiness Index. It is the fourth least happy country in the world. In the neighbouring countries, India has the lowest happiness score behind Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. What is the World Happiness Index? It is a report prepared and published by the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) that records people’s qualitative assessment of their lives, progress and well-being. The report is prepared to encourage governments of different nations to carry out constructive conversations about the importance of happiness in the lives of everyone. What are the parameters used to determine the happiness of every country? There are some key parameters used for assessment which include the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita in terms of Purchasing Power Parity (PPP), social support, health life expectancy at birth, generosity, the form of government in the country, people’s perception of corruption and freedom to make life choices. Which are the top 5 countries on the World Happiness Index?  Finland has been ranking first for the past 5 consecutive years. Followed by Denmark, Switzerland, Iceland and the Netherlands. The last in rank is Afghanistan. As per a report, western countries are happier when compared to South Asian nations. Why does India rank so low? There are many reasons for India’s “chronic unhappiness”.  The rich are becoming richer and the poor poorer. Rapid urbanisation, increased congestion in the cities, rise in pollution, the rising cost of health care, rise in crime against women and minorities, etc. are some prominent factors leading to unhappiness among Indians. India has a low score when it comes to ‘GDP per capita’, ‘Social Support’ and ‘Health Life expectancy’. The prime reason for this is the rise in the country’s population. Further, it is disappointing to know that in a country where we take great pride in social and family values, India scored low on social support. On the positive side though, our score for “Freedom to make life choices” is remarkable. What needs to change in India? To improve the GDP per capita, social support and healthy life expectancy, there is a need to bring about institutional changes for which both the citizens and the government needs to work together. India also needs to strengthen its social support by making our family and friends feel extremely supported. The country should strive for sustainable development and focus on social, environmental and financial development. This International Day of Happiness 2023, it is necessary to take note of where we stand on the World Happiness Index and take steps to bring about an improvement. Read More: International Day of Happiness 2023: Be happy and make people around you happy 

20 March,2023 03:33 PM IST | Mumbai | mid-day online correspondent
Abhang Repost will be performing at the Bandra Fort Amphitheatre for the Mahindra Roots Festival today. Photo Courtesy: Mahindra Roots Festival

How Mumbai’s Abhanga Repost is promoting Maharashtra folk music

For a college band that started out of Mumbai’s Kishinchand Chellaram (KC) College as an idea in 2014 and was formed a year later, Abhanga Repost has certainly come a long way. Now that the city band have finally arrived on the bigger stages, they are making the most of it and taking Marathi music through abhangs (devotional poetry) to the masses. Being no stranger to the stage and loving every minute of it, they celebrate the works of Sant Tukaram and Sant Tukdoji in their first album ‘Vaari’ that was released only in 2022. They are also hugely inspired by Sant Kabir and Sant Rohidas, whose poetry they hope to include in their upcoming album that they will release later this year.   Deorukhkar explains, “It has been eight years for us, so you see how long it has taken us to reach a stage like this. We once got a chance to open for Raghu Dixit but there were five other bands. This time, we got the chance to solely perform. Now, people know us, and we have that credibility of being Abhanga Repost.” Apart from Deorukhkar on drums, the six-member band has Tushar Totre on harmonium, Ajay Vavhal on electric guitar, Pratish Mhaske on lead vocals, Viraj Acharya on tabla and percussion and Swapnil Tarphe on bass guitar.         The vernacular folk fusion band will be performing this weekend at the inaugural Mahindra Roots Festival, that aims to celebrate India’s rich culture and music. They will be joined by the likes of The Aahvaan Project, Alif, Arko Mukhaerjee, Jasleen Aulakh, Tajdar Junaid, Shabnam Virmani and Raghu Dixit, who will celebrate rich folk music.   Ahead of their performance at the Bandra Fort Amphitheatre, Mid-day Online spoke to Abhanga Repost’s Dushyant Deorukhkar, Pratish Mhaske and Viraj Acharya, one half of the band that met us minutes after their rehearsals for the festival. They delve into what performing on a stage like this means for them, fighting conventional ideas of palatable music while celebrating culture through music, and working on their upcoming album.    What inspired you to reimagine abhangs in a modern avatar and especially Marathi music? Dushyant Deorukhkar: All of us in the band have been listening to folk music since our childhood at festivals and different functions, festivals and events, so we are all connected that way. Everyone has their own style of exploring music also and that is how we got into this about eight years ago. We used to perform at college festivals – me, Swapnil and Viraj were from the same college – KC College. Since then, we used to do drama and music together and then we found this love for music and performing folk music. We used to listen to music from different states and different regions in India. Then we were faced with the question of where do we find independent Marathi music. At the time, there was only one band and we found that there were very few bands who sang folk music. We didn’t know of a band that did independent Marathi music and took Marathi culture to the masses. We realised this was our chance and decided to do it.  Do you believe India has a lot to boast about with its multiple cultures and is it being celebrated enough in music through your band? Ever since you started in 2015, how have you seen the perception of Marathi folk music change? Viraj Acharya: The music done by bands of such poetry of saints definitely shows the diversity of India. The best part is that all the saints from India are saying the same thing but in different languages. So, what we do is take the same thought and convey it to people in the Marathi language.   Dushyant Deorukhkar: It has been eight years for us, so you see how long it has taken us to reach a stage like this. We once got a chance to open for Raghu Dixit but there were five other bands. This time, we got the chance to solely perform. Now, people know us, and we have that credibility of being Abhanga Repost. Earlier, people used to not know why they should watch us perform. However, when festivals like these happen, irrespective of their language, that is good. Your songs are inspired by saints including Sant Tukaram and Sant Tukdoji in your recent album. Are there any others that we should know of and those that you are inspired by? Viraj Acharya: We are definitely inspired by Sant Kabir. Then, there is also Saint Rohidas, who has written some great poetry and there is also Sant Eknath and Sant Chokamela too.  How did your families react to you making music about abhangas?  Viraj Acharya: Initially, it was like how many people have faced it -- a lot of opposition from them. Like, they used to ask, “What are you going to do?” and “How are you going to survive?” while we were doing college. However, nowadays, they share it with their friends saying, “Oh, my son is going to perform here, please go and watch”. So, it is a total journey for not only us but also our families. They have supported us and are now proud of us knowing that we are the only band performing Maharashtra folk music. If we don’t do this poetry, then who will do it and who will pass it on to the next generation? Dushyant Deorukhkar: Earlier, it was also like, “Why don’t you do Hindi?” and they were hoping for it. It is not like we don’t want to do Hindi music, but we just don’t want to force ourselves to do it just because the public wants it. We are all very clear that this is our path.  Your music is hypnotic but one aspect that I note is the use of the harmonium and tabla. Considering a traditional setup of guitars and drums, how did the inclusion of that sound come about and do you plan on using others?  Viraj Acharya: I used to play tabla since the beginning, so the band had no choice (laughs). It also keeps the original contemporary sound of the music. We don’t think of the audio of the song, we think of how we are going to perform and convey it to people? The first five-six years, we only focused on how we were going to perform it and how it would look and only then did we work on our first album. Pratish Mhaske: It gives the band a very traditional sound along with our instruments. We keep adding instruments and our guitarist also plays the mandolin, so we keep experimenting with every song. So, for every new song we are making sure that there is something new and till that song is not ready and we are not happy with the song, we don’t release it.  The band was trying to compose this song called ‘Pasaydaan’, which is a very famous poetry and prayer for a long time. Since the last six years, we weren’t happy about how we were doing it but one day we just decided we had to do it and it just happened and it was released.   Dushyant Deorukhkar: The instruments are also what keeps our originality.   Are you working on a new album? When can fans expect it? Pratish Mhaske: We are working on our second album which will have seven abhangs. There will also be another single that will be released soon. The album will come out in 2023. Read More: Radio City Freedom Awards to launch its 7th edition on February 28

20 March,2023 01:20 PM IST | Mumbai | Nascimento Pinto
The house sparrow (Passer domesticus)

World Sparrow Day preview: A home for the house sparrow

In the midst of blaring horns, loudspeakers, TV sets and now smartphones, it’s not surprising that most Mumbaikars aren’t aware that the sharp chirps of the tiny house sparrows may soon become jsut a distant memory. Over the last few decades, several studies in India and across the world have revealed a decline in the population of house sparrows (scientific name: Passer domesticus) in urban areas. In fact, a 2013 survey by the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) reported a decline in frequent sightings of house sparrow nests across Greater Mumbai region from 40% in 2005 to 10% in 2012. Though the Greater Mumbai Region fared better in numbers of no-sightings when compared to other Indian cities, the survey, compiled as a result of the Citizen Sparrow campaign ( ,indicated that sparrows are shifting to smaller towns and villages. The house sparrow (Passer domesticus). Pic Courtesy/BNHS Us and themWith an aim to create awareness about the decline in their population, and promote conservation, every year, March 20 is celebrated as World Sparrow Day. “It’s important for people to know that there’s a decline in their numbers and that humans are to be blamed for it,” says Mohammad Dilavar, vice president and founder, Nature Forever Society, which initiated World Sparrow Day in 2010. “The sparrows need water to bathe and drink. In summer, the need gets magnified. We tell Mumbaikars to keep food and water out in the open for them, and maintain it throughout the year,” he shares. According to other studies, the possible causes for the decline could be mobile phone tower radiation, introduction of unleaded petrol, pesticides, destruction of habitat including open water resources and food sources. Dr Shubhalaxmi Vaylure, founder and CEO, Ladybird Environmental Consulting LLP, which will be conducting a special sparrow walk this weekend at Urban Haat in Navi Mumbai, says, the decline in sparrow population in urban areas should be studied alongside the increase in crow population.“The fact that an ubiquitous urban bird like the house sparrow is moving to rural areas means it’s denied shelter and food. And how can it? We are trimming everything (green cover) around us,” she says. “A decline in sparrow population means the wildlife that was once around Mumbai is shrinking. The rise in the crow population points to the proliferation of garbage,” she adds. The walk will introduce people to the problems faced by sparrows as well as the possible recourse one can take while motivating them to contribute to the Citizen Sparrow programme. Buy a home for sparrowsOffer shelter to the urban house sparrows by setting up a nestbox or bird bath next to your window or in your locality. You can either build one yourself or buy one online from Nature Forever Society (visit or from AMTM India (call 28895572) Walk the talkLearn about sparrows, their behaviour and how to attract them into your neighborhood at a special walk this weekend. The workshop will also offer guidance on how to participate in the Citizen Sparrow programme that aims to study and count sparrows all over India on a regular basis. Join in to learn more about this tiny chirping creature and how to protect it. On: March 20, 7.30 am to 9.30 amAt: Urban Haat, CBD Belapur, Navi Mumbai. Entry: Free (Registration compulsory) Call: 9987013144 Email:

19 March,2023 09:11 PM IST | Mumbai | The Guide Team
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