Study of zebrafish skin patterns shows cells chasing other cells around w

first_img PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen Zebrafish, unsurprisingly, have striped bodies, reminiscent of zebras. But how does its biology decide to create the stripped patterns, and how does it make it come about? Research by the team in Japan, may be about to provide an answer.Scientists have wondered about how animals get their stripes or spots for years. Are they hard-coded in DNA, the same way that an organism is able to produce an arm or leg, or is there some other mechanism at work? Oddly, Alan Turing, the famous math and computer visionary asked himself this very question back in the 1950’s, and it turns out his theory may turn out to be closer than anyone expected. He came up with a mathematical model that described the interactions between two molecules—one that causes a pattern to appear and one that attempts to stop it. In this new research, it’s not molecules, but whole cells that appear to be doing something similar.To find out what’s going on with the zebrafish’s stripes, the researchers placed a single yellow pigment cell (xanthophore) in a Petri dish and watched it wander around aimlessly. They did the same with a black pigment cell (melanophore) and found it behaved in much the same way. But when they placed both in a Petri dish, they discovered the yellow cell (using finger-like projections) actually chased the black cell around. They noted the black cells were able to move slightly faster, which meant there was a constant game of near catch and run. PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen Computer simulation explains why zebras have stripes PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen Citation: Study of zebrafish skin patterns shows cells chasing other cells around (w/ video) (2014, January 21) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-01-zebrafish-skin-patterns-cells-video.html PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen © 2014 Phys.org Explore further Play Credit: PNAS, doi/10.1073/pnas.1315416111 Play Credit: PNAS, doi/10.1073/pnas.1315416111 Play Credit: PNAS, doi/10.1073/pnas.1315416111 The researchers can’t prove it, at least not yet, but they suspect the game of catch and run exhibited by the two cells is what results in the stripes seen on a whole fish. If there were hundreds, or thousands of such cells all playing catch and run with each other, they suggest, it’s possible that the end result would be a corralling of the black cells, resulting in a shape that to us looks like long black stripes. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. More information: “In vitro analysis suggests that difference in cell movement during direct interaction can generate various pigment patterns in vivo,” by Hiroaki Yamanaka and Shigeru Kondo. www.pnas.org/cgi/doi/10.1073/pnas.1315416111 (Phys.org) —A team of researchers at Osaka University in Japan has discovered that one type of zebrafish pigment cell chases another around in a Petri dish possibly explaining how they fish gets its stripes. The team has published its findings in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Play Credit: PNAS, doi/10.1073/pnas.1315416111 Much more work will have to be done in this area, of course, but for now, it appears possible that some animals at least, get their coloring as the result of physical actions taken by cells, rather than genetic imprinting.last_img read more

Narwhal tusk length linked to testes mass suggesting its purpose is for

first_img The narwhal tusk has inspired a lot of theories regarding its reason for existing (for use as a weapon, water tester or even as a means of conjuring magic) but thus far, most remain just that because of the lack of study done on the whales in their native environment. In this latest effort the research team set out to learn more about both narwhal and beluga whales, specifically their mating practices, because they would like to better understand how both whales might react to global warming.To learn more about the whales, the researchers obtained data collected between the years 1997 to 2008 by Inuits who are allowed to hunt the whales. The data consisted mainly of measurements, which included the reproductive tracts of every whale caught, and the length and girth of narwhal tusks. In studying the measurements, the team found what appears to be a very clear correlation between testes mass in narwhals, and tusk length—the more massive the testes, the longer the tusk. This, the team claims, indicates that the tusk is used by the males to attract females, or conversely, it’s a sign females use to determine which males will likely be the most fertile.The team also reports that they found no significant differences between narwhal and beluga reproductive tract length for males or females, though the beluga whale had much larger testes relative to body size than narwhals, suggesting that beluga males have more female sexual partners.Thus far the research group doesn’t appear to have found any evidence to suggest how either whale species might respond to global warming (which will mean warming sea temperatures), but they do conclude that because of the different mating strategies used by the whales, they likely will respond differently to climate change. More information: Mating ecology of beluga (Delphinapterus leucas) and narwhal (Monodon monoceros) as estimated by reproductive tract metrics, Marine Mammal Science, 2014. DOI: 10.1111/mms.12165AbstractNarwhal and beluga whales are important species to Arctic ecosystems, including subsistence hunting by Inuit, and little is understood about their mating ecology. Reproductive tract metrics vary across species in relation to mating strategy, and have been used to infer mating ecology. Reproductive tracts from beluga and narwhal were collected between 1997 and 2008 from five beluga stocks and two narwhal stocks across the Canadian Arctic. Tract length for males and females, relative testes mass for males, and tusk length for male narwhal were measured. We assessed variation relative to species, body size, stock, maturity, and season. Significant variation was found in testes mass across month and stock for beluga, and no significant difference between stock or date of harvest for narwhal. Beluga had significantly larger testes relative to body size than narwhal, suggesting they were more promiscuous than narwhal. A significant relationship was found between narwhal tusk length and testes mass, indicating the tusk may be important in female mate choice. No significant differences were found between narwhal and beluga reproductive tract length for males or females. The mating systems suggested for narwhal and belugas by our results mean the two species may respond differently to climate change. Narwhales. Credit: Glenn Williams, public domain Citation: Narwhal tusk length linked to testes mass suggesting its purpose is for attracting females (2014, September 23) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-09-narwhal-tusk-length-linked-mass.html Journal information: Marine Mammal Science (Phys.org) —A team of researchers studying narwhal and beluga whales in their native Arctic ecosystem has found what appears to be a correlation between testes mass and tusk length in narwhals—suggesting the horn-like appendage exists as a means for males to attract females. In their paper published in Marine Mammal Science, the team describes how they obtained narwhal anatomy measurements and why they believe the tusk serves mostly as a fertility draw.center_img Explore further Unicorn-like narwhal studied for sensory use of tusks © 2014 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

A seemingly obvious way to make the electricity market better may actually

first_img More information: Sebastian M. Krause, et al. “Econophysics of adaptive power markets: When a market does not dampen fluctuations but amplifies them.” Physical Review E. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.92.012815 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Restaurants often have their best specials in the middle of the week as a way to increase business on their slowest days. By evening out the flow of customers, carefully timed sale prices can reduce fluctuations in demand. Logically, researchers have wondered if a similar “adaptive pricing strategy” could be used to reduce daily fluctuations in demand in the electricity market, which has become a growing problem with the increased use of fluctuating energy sources, such as wind and solar. In support of the adaptive pricing strategy, models based on standard economic theory have shown that lowering the price of electricity at off-peak times and communicating the prices through smart meters encourages more consumption at these times in a predictable way. These models suggest that adaptive pricing provides a way to control demand and reduce fluctuations, with significant potential economic advantages. Now, surprisingly, researchers in a new study have used an alternative model based on econophysics that shows that adaptive pricing has the exact opposite effect: rather than dampen the fluctuations, it amplifies them.”Our work examines the, at first sight, great idea to use smart electricity meters to dampen fluctuations in the electricity power nets,” Stefan Bornholdt at the University of Bremen told Phys.org. “However, we find that under some conditions, consumers with such meters start competing and create a new artificial market which exhibits properties of real markets, such as bubbles and crashes. Thus, instead of dampening out fluctuations, it may create new ones. In this way, interacting smart meters may generate chaos instead of stability.”The reason for amplifying the fluctuations, as Bornholdt and coauthors Sebastian M. Krause and Stefan Börries explain in a paper to be published in Physical Review E, is that changing the price of electricity over time can lead to the emergence of coordinated behavior among consumers.”The coordinated action of consumers in our model stems from our basic needs (of electricity), i.e., the fraction of needs which cannot be postponed indefinitely: washing machines, heaters, AC, etc. Those can wait for a while, however, eventually have to be operated when need has increased (laundry has piled up). We will then even accept a higher electricity price. Indeed, the first washing machines that connect to smart meters allow such a price threshold to be set. “When laundry piles up, users (or algorithms in advanced machines) can adapt the threshold to a higher allowed price. When the fluctuating price then drops after a while from higher levels, those consumers who postponed their activity will then join the ‘happy hour’ of cheap electricity, leading to an avalanche of demand (reminding of some crowded bars at happy hour). This is a dynamic phenomenon which econophysics models, but not standard economic models, can represent.” Citation: A seemingly obvious way to make the electricity market better may actually make it worse (2015, July 23) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-07-seemingly-obvious-electricity-worse.html Journal information: Physical Review E Explore further The too-smart-for-its-own-good grid The new econophysics model shows that this coordinated “happy hour” behavior may in turn lead to “catastrophic synchronization” in which the actual demand differs by several orders of magnitude from the average amount predicted by the standard economic model. As a result of this phenomenon, it’s nearly impossible to predict the demand at any given price, as the demand varies so widely at one price. In sharp contrast with the standard economic model, an equilibrium price at which supply and demand are balanced can never be established. Instead of providing a way to control demand, adaptive pricing may instead send it fluctuating wildly.So what’s the big difference between the two models that leads to such vastly different outcomes? And which one is more accurate? The main difference, the researchers explain, is that models based on standard economic theory average the behavior of many agents to predict the outcome of price changes. The econophysics model does not use averaging, but instead allows for independent agent behavior and interactions among a large number of agents, which allows collective behavior to emerge.The question of which model is more accurate is more difficult to answer. It’s well-known that real markets often behave differently than standard economic models, which often fail at predicting bubbles and crashes. Models based on similar principles also encounter problems when describing a wide variety of physical phenomena, such as earthquakes, solar flares, and mass extinctions. One thing these systems have in common, however, is the emergence of collective behavior, which suggests that the econophysics models may have an advantage. © 2015 Phys.org This sketch shows how a consumer may change the price they will pay for electricity (acceptable price) for certain flexible uses, such as washing clothes, that depends on the actual price and the consumer’s need to use the electricity. Credit: Krause, et al. ©2015 American Physical Societylast_img read more

Visible blue light induces coppercatalyzed CN crosscouplings

first_img(Phys.org)—A small team of researchers at California Institute of Technology has found a way to use visible blue light to induce copper-catalyzed C-N cross-couplings. In their paper published in the journal Science, the team describes the technique and why they believe the work may lead to bigger things. Michael Greaney with the University of Manchester offers a Perspectives piece on the work done by the team in the same journal issue outlining the process and explaining why the use of visible light to effect photochemical transformations has become so important in recent years. More information: Asymmetric copper-catalyzed C-N cross-couplings induced by visible light, Science  12 Feb 2016: Vol. 351, Issue 6274, pp. 681-684, DOI: 10.1126/science.aad8313 , http://science.sciencemag.org/content/351/6274/681AbstractDespite a well-developed and growing body of work in copper catalysis, the potential of copper to serve as a photocatalyst remains underexplored. Here we describe a photoinduced copper-catalyzed method for coupling readily available racemic tertiary alkyl chloride electrophiles with amines to generate fully substituted stereocenters with high enantioselectivity. The reaction proceeds at –40°C under excitation by a blue light-emitting diode and benefits from the use of a single, Earth-abundant transition metal acting as both the photocatalyst and the source of asymmetric induction. An enantioconvergent mechanism transforms the racemic starting material into a single product enantiomer. Citation: Visible blue light induces copper-catalyzed C-N cross-couplings (2016, February 12) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-02-visible-blue-copper-catalyzed-c-n-cross-couplings.html Superfast light pulses able to measure response time of electrons to light Journal information: Science One of the main parts of chemical research lies in discovering what happens when different chemicals come into contact with other chemicals—the reactions that occur can lead to the development of new products or a better understanding of how things work in the natural world. In recent years, chemists have begun to explore more fully the types of reactions that can occur when chemicals or substances are exposed to different kinds of light. Initially, such work focused more heavily on ultraviolet photochemistry, but as Greaney notes, such work requires specialized equipment—because of that, many chemists have begun to move their focus to using visible light to effect photochemical transformations. In this new effort, the researchers used the light from a blue LED to cause a C-N coupling to occur.The researchers were focused on a class of biologically active molecules that contain chiral (asymmetric) carbon centers—in this case nitrogen-containing carbon centers. They were looking to solve one of the problems of working with such molecules (their tendency to block or inhibit subsequent reactions), by combining base-metal catalysis, asymmetric synthesis and visible-light photoredox catalysis. Taking a cue from other research involving visible light, the team applied the light from a simple blue LED. They also noted that other experiments had involved noble metal complexes, which do the job well, but cost a lot—so they decided to go instead with copper salt. They found that the blue light was able to start the photoreduction of a substrate to form an alkyl radical via electron transfer. The result was the formation of a C-N bond.The work done by the team is another step forward in finding simpler and cheaper ways to instigate reactions that can result in products such as those used in the pharmaceutical and materials industry. © 2016 Phys.org Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Particles selfassemble into Archimedean tilings

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Programmable disorder: Random algorithms at the molecular scale Particles self-assemble into these networks, which produce Archimedean tilings when lines are drawn between the particle centers. Credit: Stephen Whitelam “The simplest way of tiling a plane is to cover it with triangles, or with squares, or with hexagons. These patterns are called the Platonic or regular Archimedean tilings. Other authors have shown that particles with certain geometric properties—with sticky patches at certain angles—can spontaneously form the networks that are equivalent to these tilings, meaning that if you draw lines between particle centers, then the picture you get looks like a tiling. “The next simplest way to cover a surface is with combinations of two or three regular polygons, and these patterns are called the semi-regular Archimedean tilings (often just Archimedean tilings). Other researchers have used simulations to show that particles with the correct geometry alone probably can’t self-assemble into such structures. My work confirms this fact, but shows that what does work is if the particle interactions are chemically specific, meaning that the sticky patches only stick to certain other sticky patches. In this way, particles avoid making lots of binding mistakes, and manage to find their way to the correct structure.” Interestingly, chemical selectivity is also used to control the interparticle interactions among biological particles, such as proteins and DNA.”One aspect of this result is already widely known: researchers who use DNA nanotechnology routinely use DNA-mediated chemically specific interactions to make structures as complex or more complex than the Archimedean tilings,” Whitelam said. “What surprised me is 1) that you need this strategy even for the Archimedean tilings (among the most simple regular structures), and 2) that all you need is this strategy (that is, chemical specificity is both ‘necessary and sufficient’). I wanted to emphasize this fact because it did not seem obvious to me that one should need chemical specificity to make the networks equivalent to the Archimedean tilings.”Whitelam expects that the minimal positive design strategy should also work for self-assembling particles into other types of arrangements besides Archimedean tilings. The ability to self-assemble particles into various patterns could provide a tool for fabricating future nanoscale devices. “Researchers would like to be able to control the patterns of molecules on surfaces for several reasons,” Whitelam said. “One is that if you can control what sits on a surface and how it is organized then you can influence the chemical and physical properties of the surface. Another is that networks in two dimensions can be used to ‘host,’ or position, other molecules: imagine putting particles (such as metal nanoparticles, potentially useful in next-generation electronics devices) in the pores of the networks. It is important to be able to control the relative positions of such particles; being able to assemble any of the Archimedean tilings, or indeed any network you desired, would be a good way of doing this.”In the future, Whitelam plans to work with other scientists who come to The Molecular Foundry at Berkeley Lab, which is a US Department of Energy User Facility for nanoscience. “My aim is to build on this work in order to collaborate with Foundry Users—scientists who come to the Foundry to do collaborative nanoscience—who make DNA-linked particles,” he said. “We would like to work out how to design such particles in order to make new nanostructures ‘to order.’ Explore further More information: Stephen Whitelam. “Minimal Positive Design for Self-Assembly of the Archimedean Tilings.” Physical Review Letters. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.228003 Stephen Whitelam, a researcher at the Molecular Foundry at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, has published a paper on the minimal positive design strategy for self-assembling Archimedean tilings in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters.Previously, researchers have successfully self-assembled particles into Platonic tilings, which are simpler arrangements consisting of regular periodic arrays of a single shape, such as squares, triangles, or hexagons. To do this, researchers use a strategy called positive design, in which the desired structure is promoted based on the particle geometry. When the particles are combined and cooled, they spontaneously self-assemble into Platonic tilings due to a variety of underlying chemical, physical, and thermodynamic interactions.Self-assembling particles into the next-simplest arrangement, Archimedean tilings, is much more difficult. Archimedean tilings are composed of two or three different shapes, and only one type of vertex (so if you zoomed in on the intersection points, they would all look the same, having the same angles in the same order). There are eight types of Archimedean tilings, and the new design strategy can construct all eight of them.The novel aspect of the new design strategy is the “minimal” element, which refers to chemical selectivity. Whitelam found that if you identify all of the interparticle interactions involved in a desired arrangement, and then select particles with only those interactions and no others, then under a simple cooling protocol the particles will self-assemble into the desired structure. The “positive” aspect of the strategy is that it works by promoting the desired structure, and does not require suppressing all of the many possible undesired structures.The simulations also showed that, if chemical selectivity is not accounted for, then particles do not self-assemble into the Archimedean tilings, showing that the chemical selectivity is critical to realizing these structures. “The results show that you need ‘chemical specificity’ of interactions to self-assemble certain simple, regular structures,” Whitelam told Phys.org. “I wanted to write a paper about the amount of ‘information’ that you need to ‘program’ into a particle in order to allow it to self-assemble, in the presence of many copies of itself, into a desired structure. (Phys.org)—For the first time, researchers have simulated particles that can spontaneously self-assemble into networks that form geometrical arrangements called Archimedean tilings. The key to realizing these structures is a strategy called minimal positive design, in which both the geometry and the chemical selectivity of the particles is taken into account. The process has applications in molecular self-assembly, which could one day be used to build a variety of nanoscale technologies. © 2016 Phys.org Citation: Particles self-assemble into Archimedean tilings (2016, December 8) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-12-particles-self-assemble-archimedean-tilings.html Journal information: Physical Review Letterslast_img read more

I paint to express my feelings

first_imgWhere did the ambition to become an artist come from? Were you always interested in art?I always had interest in sketching and loved playing with colours. So one can say that I was always interested in the arts.What are the themes you prefer to work with?I paint to express my internal feelings. Being a woman I love to work on women-centric or sentimental themes like love etc. What is your medium of choice in art?I have tried water colour and oil colours in the past but I am very comfortable with the acrylic medium. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Tell us a bit about your childhood and initial years. What role did art play in those years?I had a normal childhood. I used to sketch. Art was my favorite pastime. However after my marriage it got stopped for a while as there was hardly any time to do these. Now that the kids are grown up I have again find time to follow my passion in art.What plans for 2013?After this solo show I have few group exhibitions lined up in the latter part of this year. There is a lot to look forward to. How does Delhi feature in your works?Delhi per se does not feature in my work as my paintings are based on themes of love and women specifically. However, it is only after coming in Delhi in 2010 that I decided to become a full time professional painter and there was no looking back.last_img read more

Hats off

first_imgShangri-La’s Eros Hotel is celebrated the ninth  International Chef’s Day on 20 October 2013 to honour our culinary masters and to recognise the pivotal role chefs play in society.It is also a day for helping young chefs. Most importantly, though it is a day to recognise the very important role that chefs play in our societies because, they have a great responsibility of not feeding people, but also giving nourishment and education. Chefs are responsible for leading the way in using ingredients sensibly and responsibly. The day was planned to salute their culinary spirit and their art of crafting magic for the taste buds. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Under the helm of Executive Chef Darren Conole, the cooking masters geared up to make the day special for guests and society. Not just a brunch and lunch, the day held a cake mixing ceremony in the lobby of Shangri-La’s that brought to life the rich tradition, heralding and unveiling the  spirit of the festive season in all its grandeur. Guests rolled up their sleeves and put their hands in the mixing pots to make the perfect Christmas cake. The mixture was placed in airtight bags and left to mature until around Christmas, when it will be blended with the cake batter and baked.After the traditional ceremony, the chefs took a walk to India Gate driving a noble cause of ‘Clean Delhi for a Green Future’ to pick up the trash that mars the beauty of the iconic Delhi landmark.Food, tradition and a keen foresight for the future. What better way to celebrate the power of chefs than this! Head over to Shangri-La to experience a piece of this magic.last_img read more

Fake doctor held after patient falls sick

first_imgKolkata: A fake doctor was arrested in Sonarpur after the woman he was treating for quite some time fell sick and had to be admitted to a private nursing home.Locals beat him up and handed him over to the police. Rakesh Mondol, the fake doctor, admitted that he only has a diploma in pharmacy, which he obtained after becoming a graduate in Arts.Roma Halder, a resident of Adarshapalli in Sonarpur, was diagnosed with a tumour on the breast. She visited Mondol six months ago and had been under his treatment since then. Mondol was treating her with homeopathic medicines. The problem cropped up when Haldrer felt sick. She complained of acute pain and was taken to Mondol’s chamber. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedMondol administered five bottles of saline on her in two days.Halder’s conditions deteriorated on Tuesday evening after the fifth bottle was administered. She was taken to a private nursing home in Kolkata, after she felt critically ill. Locals became suspicious after Halder was admitted to the hospital.They went to Mondol’s chamber and asked him to show his certificates. Mondol initially refused to furnish his certificates but succumbed to the pressure. Also Read – Naihati: 10 councillors return to TMC from BJPHe confessed that he had given a false registration number on the writing pad, which was used for prescribing medicines.Though he did not have any degree, he picked up treating patients because of his interest in medicine and experience.Locals ransacked his chamber and handed him over to the police. They have demanded exemplary punishment.Halder’s mother said they were deceived by his acting. He is well-behaved and assured to cure her daughter. Initially, Halder showed signs of improvement but gradually deteriorated and finally had to be admittedto a hospital.”The doctor was treating her for the past six months. We could have taken her to a genuine doctor had he confessed to us before. But he went on treating her without any knowledge of treating a tumour,” said Halder’s mother.last_img read more

We serve what we grow

first_imgDifferent hotel groups have indulged in the art of producing organic fruits and vegetables within their premises or nearby areas, which can be served to the guests. The pioneer of this practice is The Lalit Hotel (an enterprise of the Bharat Hotels Ltd). Their hotels in different parts of the country, are inculcating this practice with the motto ‘We serve What We Grow’.In God’s own country Kerala, The Lalit Resort & Spa Bekal, has initiated a drive to grow their own herbs, fruits and vegetables.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’They proudly own the organic vegetable gardens and they use latest farming technologies. They also grow precious herbs that is used for ayurvedic treatment. Rejuve – The Spa offers ayurvedic massage therapies with honey, fresh Coconut, Sandal powder, Aloevera juice, Turmeric, Lemon grass, pure milk, medicinal rice etc. In Goa, the property which is called The Lalit Golf & Spa Resort, is endowed with lush green gardens and sprawling organic farms, spread over 88-acres. Other than the golf and spa, this resort is also famous for its scrumptious cuisines and freshness of food.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixTo promote well being, they initiated a drive to grow herbs, fruits and vegetables across their hotels. They proudly say, “We serve what we grow”. The Lalit Golf & Spa Resort Goa also own organic vegetable gardens. They grow different varieties of fruits and vegetables such as coconut, mangoes, cinnamon, lemon grass, papaya, and seasonal vegetables such as chillies, brinjal, rocket leaf lettuce, raddish, okra, red spinach, tomato and pumpkin. There are about 1,250 coconut trees and the same number of mango trees that keeps the area green.  A destination of inspiration and calm, The Lalit Temple View Khajuraho, is nestled in the shadow of Khajuraho —a UNESCO world heritage site. Other than the architectural delight and great services, this hotel is also famous for its scrumptious cuisines and freshness of food. The secret of The Lalit’s delectable dishes lies in the quality of its raw material. The Lalit Temple View Khajuraho overlooks nine acres of beautifully manicured vegetable gardens.They grow fruits and vegetables such as Papaya, Banana, Mango, Cherry Tomato, Cauliflower, Cabbage, Ridge Gourd, Spinach, Egg Plant, Green Chilly, Broccoli, Ice berg lettuce, Coriander, Zucchini, Red Cabbage in their gardens. Thus, the menu at the hotel  boasts of aromatic and flavoursome dishes. The art of dining has been perfected by blending the finest flavours and design elements.last_img read more

Twin celebrations on Tagores 156th Birth anniversary

first_imgIf it’s time to celebrate Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore’s 156th birth anniversary, Kolkata is ready with various events to commemorate the special occasion. ‘Two Poets’ is a unique musical conceived by versatile Assam based vocalist Chandrima Bhattacharya which deals a magical blend of Tagore’s songs along with compositions of the legendary poet-lyricist Gulzar. Both are poets from different times but this musical revolves around the similarities between their creative urges. Be it songs of love, Monsoon, philosophy of life, both poets connect well. It shows the way how a living legend gets inspired from another Bard of a different era. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfGulzar once said, “My first introduction to Tagore was when I came to India after partition. Tagore has this beautiful way of giving details. He wrote all by experience and living those moments. Nothing feels imaginary in his works. Being a lyricist, I’m deeply aware of sounds in poetry. People beyond Bengal don’t even know the romantic poems of his young age. They don’t even know that he wrote romantic poems. They don’t even know that he was young! People know him as the bearded man who wrote the national anthem. So people take him in the line of Mahatma Gandhi and Pandit Nehru. He was a playful young man too. One should learn about this side of him as well. Look at his poetry for the young. He wrote so much for children. It is sad that apart from a few of his writings, children today are not taught Tagore.” Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveSudarshan Chakravorty, an ace choreographer, is all set to present the musical journey, performing as a story teller for the first time. People have watched him dance, and produce big dance shows before. Chandrima Bhattacharya, who will sing the songs of Tagore and Gulzar, said, “This is happening for the first time in Kolkata. I am thrilled as this musical deals with very unusual gems from both the greats. Gulzarji’s ghazals, poetry, his personal anecdotes regarding the Bard will add a different colour to the whole venture.” Gulzar has often said that the ‘Geetanjali’ changed his life and that one whole community(Bengalis) lives on Tagore. The programme will include eleven songs in all, five from Tagore’s ‘Geetanjali’ and six from Gulzar. ‘Amare tumi ashesh korecho’ by Tagore is to be paired with Gulzar’s ‘Shyam se aankh me nami si hai/aaj phir aapki kaami si hai’, and Gulzar’s ‘Ek ekele ek shahar mei’ would be paired with ‘Amar ei path chalatei anando’ in the programme. The script has been penned by Angshuman Bhattacharya, supported by Romil and Sudipta Chanda. ‘Two Poets – Dui Kobi’ will be held on May 18 at a tea lounge in South Kolkata. A man for all seasons, Tagore’s birthday is celebrated with aplomb and a plethora of cultural ensembles in the month of May. So where and how did Tagore spend his birthdays?That is answered by ‘Jonmodine Rabindranath’ – an initiative by interdisciplinary artist Sujoy Prasad Chatterjee comprising narratives by popular film actor Sohini Sarkar, medical professional Sharmistha Ray and Sujoy himself. “Sarala Devi first started celebrating Tagore’s birthday when the poet was 27 years old. She gifted him a dhoti and a chador(shawl). This was after Satyandranath Tagore returned from abroad. There is another anecdote that Lady Ranu Mukerji (then Adhikari) gifted him a handkerchief on his 59th birthday. Another slightly tragic story would be of his elder brother Satyendranath Tagore and Rabindranath parting ways in terms of their estate on one of his birthdays. The Padma and Silaidaha were no longer part of his territory,” Chatterjee told Millennium Post.Interestingly, this show encompasses anecdotes, stories and incidents associated with the celebration of his birthdays till the very end (80 years). The chronology is maintained and the changing social and political dynamics of the country also gets reflected in the script which documents all of this through songs and stories. The songs will be presented by Srovonti Basu Bandopadhyay. The show is being organised by Highland Park Housing Society and opens on May 13 at Highland Park Club. Following the show, there would be a concert by acclaimed Rabindrasangeet vocalist Jayati Chakraborty.last_img read more

Abhishek Anubrata to look after party affairs in Nadia with Parthas aid

first_imgKolkata: Abhishek Banerjee, All India Trinamool Youth Congress president and the party’s MP and Anubrata Mondol, the party’s Birbhum district president, will look after the party in Nadia along with Partha Chatterjee, the party’s secretary general.The decision was taken by Trinamool supremo and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in Nadia on Wednesday. She met all the MLAs, Zilla Parishad and Panchayat members in the district. In the administrative review meeting, Mamata Banerjee pulled up the chairman of Shantipur Municipality Ajay Dey and asked him to bury the hatchet with some local leaders. “You had been an MLA and now you’re the chairman of a municipality. You should work together with other leaders,” the Chief Minister said. Also Read – 3 injured, flight, train services hit as rains lash BengalBefore the Lok Sabha polls, Banerjee wants to put an end to infighting, which is affecting the party’s progress in different areas. Meanwhile, Partha Chatterjee told newsmen that because of his busy schedule, it is not possible for him to come to the district. “Abhishek Banerjee and Anubrata will look after the party in Nadia and I will assist them,” he said. It may be mentioned that in Cooch Behar, while addressing a gathering on Tuesday, Abhishek Banerjee had cautioned party workers against infighting.last_img read more

IT officials seize cash gold worth over Rs 4cr

first_imgKolkata: After conducting reconnaissance in disguise for several days, Income Tax officials seized Rs 1.5 crore of unaccounted cash and 8 kg of gold worth Rs 2.63 crore from hawala operators in Bengal, an official said on Thursday. “Based on credible inputs regarding suspicious activities of unaccounted cash and gold trading activities being carried out at Burra Bazar area and nearby places, our officials seized more than Rs 1.5 crore in cash and 8 kg of gold biscuits worth Rs 2.63 crore in two days from hawala operators and unaccounted gold traders,” an IT official said. During the search and seizure operation, several incriminating physical and electronic evidences were seized, the official said. IT officials have so far seized over Rs 28.77 crore of unaccounted cash, jewellery and bullion from the state after the announcement of the Lok Sabha elections, the official said.last_img read more

Mala Roy files nomination says confident of victory

first_imgKolkata: Trinamool Congress candidate from South Kolkata Lok Sabha seat Mala Roy filed her nomination on Monday at the office of the District Election Officer (DEO), South Kolkata, at Survey Building in Alipore.”I am 1000 percent confident of victory. The people of South Kolkata have always elected Trinamool Congress and this year, it will be no exception. Our Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is the candidate for all the 42 Lok Sabha seats and the TMC will win riding on the massive development that she has done in the state,” Roy said after filing her nominations. She reiterated that she is trying to reach every single doorstep in the constituency during her campaign. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataSouth Kolkata will go to polls in the last phase of elections on May 19. Roy was accompanied by state Urban Development minister Firhad Hakim, state Education minister Partha Chatterjee, state Power minister Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay and state Disaster Management minister Javed Khan. “The people of South Kolkata have full faith in Mamata Banerjee and she has nominated Roy in this seat. So her win is just a matter of time,” Chatterjee said. Subrata Bakshi had swept the Lok Sabha elections in 2014 with a margin of 1,36,339 votes over BJP’s Tathagata Roy. Interestingly, Roy had contested with a Congress ticket in 2014 and had bagged over 1 lakh votes. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateRoy was initially surprised when Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee nominated her in the seat but being a seasoned politician, she soon started her campaign to reach out to the voters. TMC celebrity candidate Nusrat Jahan also filed her nomination on Monday for the Basirhat parliamentary constituency. Basirhat will go for the polls in the seventh phase on May 19. Nusrat Jahan and Mimi Chakraborty (fighting from the Jadavpur constituency) are two new additions to the party’s list of celebrity candidates, which also includes MPs Dev Adhikari, Moon Moon Sen and Shatabdi Roy.last_img read more

Third person nabbed in Nirmal Kundu murder case

first_imgKolkata: Another person has been arrested in connection with Nimta Trinamool leader Nirmal Kundu’s murder case on Thursday night from Hooghly.The accused, identified as Sanjay Das, was produced before the Barrackpore Court on Friday and was remanded to six days police custody. On the other hand, the state Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has taken over the Nimta murder case on Friday, following Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s instruction on Thursday. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataAccording to sources, on Wednesday night two persons identified as Suman Kundu and Sujoy Das were arrested. After interrogating the duo, sleuths came up with Sanjay’s name. It has been alleged that he was riding the bike and Sujoy was sitting on the pillion rider’s seat, from where he had fired the shots at Nirmal. On the other hand, on Friday afternoon, CID sleuths went to Nimta police station and took over the charge of the investigation. All the documents including case diaries were handed over to CID team by the investigating officer of Nimta police station. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateSources have informed that the accused persons who were remanded to police custody will also be handed over to CID after maintaining legal procedure. Sleuths are trying to find out who else are connected with the planning of the murder. The CID team has already met with Nirmal’s family and will question the persons who were on the spot on Tuesday. Sleuths may also question the accused persons named in the FIR, apart from the arrested trio. Sleuths are also trying to know from whom the contract killers had got the one-shotter pistol, which was seized after arresting Sujoy. Earlier on Thursday evening, the Chief Minister had ordered a CID probe to solve the Nirmal Kundu murder case. She also alleged that BJP is behind the violence taking place across the state and pointed her finger at the saffron party for the murder as well.last_img read more

Family of braindead man donate his organs to 3 patients

first_imgKolkata: The family of a brain-dead 34-year-old man donated his organs to at least three patients on Tuesday. This is the fourth cadaver donation recorded in Kolkata this year.A green corridor was created to transfer his heart, kidneys and a liver to three hospitals within a few minutes. A green corridor is earmarked for speedy transportation of organs by enforcing traffic restrictions between the origin and destination.The donor, Chinmoy Ghosh from Memari in Burdwan, met with an accident on Wednesday and was admitted to Burdwan Medical College and Hospital, before being shifted to Park Clinic. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: Mamata”He was declared brain dead today (Tuesday). His family gave their nod for organ donation,” said a senior doctor who was part of a team that convinced the family for organ donation.Ghosh’s heart was taken to Calcutta Medical College and Hospital, one kidney and one liver were given to SSKM Hospital in Kolkata. The second kidney was transferred to Apollo.”The ambulance took 12 minutes to reach Apollo Hospital from Park Clinic, eight minutes to Calcutta Medical College and Hospital and three minutes to SSKM Hospital,” said a police officer. The donor’s heart was transplanted into Surojit Patra (25), one liver into Bidhan Adhikari (54) and one kidney into Roma Kumari Dhanu (19).(With inputs from Indian Express)last_img read more

CRISIL ratings laud KMCs performance

first_imgKolkata: CRISIL has reaffirmed its rating on debt programme of Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) at CRISIL A+/Stable and has also renewed and reaffirmed its corporate credit rating (CCR) at CCR A+/Stable. The ratings continue to reflect the KMC’s stable operating performance, thanks to sustained support from the state government. Due to stable financial performance of the civic body, the revenue receipts are expected to increase to Rs 3,290 crore in the 2019-20 fiscal, from Rs 2,599 crore in the 2018-19 fiscal. The grants from the state government have contributed about 49% of the total revenue receipts in the current fiscal. KMC’s own revenue has grown over the years, primarily on increase of property tax collection. Property tax has gone up to Rs 822 crore in 2018, from Rs 655 crore in 2014.last_img read more

Frank Sinatra Almost Became an 80s Action Hero

first_imgBelieve it or not, there was a time when Frank Sinatra was wanted for the lead role in Die Hard. How had this happened? When the movie was in production, Bruce Willis’s reputation was somewhat different to what it is now.A 2014 Business Insider article wrote that “Willis was not exactly the kind of person the studio was hoping to cast in the role.”Frank SinatraIn the late Eighties he was best known for the romantic comedy TV show Moonlighting and Blake Edwards’ movie romp Blind Date. He was affable yes, resourceful, kind of tough… but an action hero? Forget it.Of course naysayers went on to eat their words. With Willis at its heart the film was a smash hit. Its self-contained, high concept premise of a skyscraper under siege made it dynamic and innovative. Put-upon central character John McLane became the most enduring part of his career to date.Bruce Willis in 2010. Photo by Gage Skidmore CC BY-SA 3.0Based on the 1979 book Nothing Lasts Forever by Roderick Thorp, the original flick took some time to reach the screen. And when producers were first mulling over a movie version, Sinatra’s name was top of the list.While this sounds strange, it makes sense in the context of the source novel. Nothing Lasts Forever was thought of by Thorp in a dream. He’d somehow managed to go to sleep during that other iconic skyscraper film, The Towering Inferno (1974).Bruce Willis running with automatic weapon in a scene from the film ‘Die Hard’, 1988. Photo by 20th Century-Fox/Getty ImagesHe wound up dreaming about Joe Leland, the hero of his previous book The Detective (1966), facing off against criminals in a high rise. This was the essence of Nothing Lasts Forever, a follow up to Leland’s debut story.The Detective had been filmed in 1968, starring none other than “Ol’ Blue Eyes.” This gritty police thriller, which tackled sensitive topics such as homosexuality, was a high point on Sinatra’s CV.Frank Sinatra in 1955.His acting chops were tested in this and other movies like The Man With The Golden Arm (1955), The Manchurian Candidate (1962) and Von Ryan’s Express (1965).A major factor that prevented Sinatra’s involvement was time. Die Hard began to take shape 2 decades after The Detective, and while Joe Leland had reached retirement age in the novel, the smooth crooner himself was way past that. At 73 he just wouldn’t have cut it.Photo of Frank Sinatra and Lee Remick from the film ‘The Detective’.Whether he’d have been required to run around in a vest, crawl through ventilation shafts and use foul language is unclear. Plus accounts of why exactly the Sinatra version didn’t happen vary.Business Insider claimed that “Because the movie was technically a sequel, they were contractually obligated to offer Frank Sinatra the leading role. He was 73 years old at the time and gracefully turned the offer down.”The Independent says “Producers had hoped Sinatra would return as Leland for the sequel.” Either way, the swinging “Chairman of the Board” put the brakes on.Sinatra as Tony Rome.Joe Leland switched his name to John McLane. Arnold Schwarzenegger was approached, in what might surely have been the most radical actor replacement in film history. Finally, Willis got the gig. It’s difficult to imagine anyone else in the part.Die Hard celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. A piece in The Independent refers to it being “nothing short of a phenomenon, spawning four sequels to date and a loyal fan base, many of whom claim it as their favourite Christmas film.”Yes, the mayhem occurs during the holiday season. The most wonderful time of the year is also the most explosive and swear-laden.Read another story from us: The FBI Files and Mob Ties of Frank SinatraA Die Hard with Frank Sinatra would have been an unusual affair. Yet the prospect of him asking Alan Rickman’s Hans Gruber to “Come fly with me” before his death plunge is an entertaining idea indeed!last_img read more

The Turbulent Life of Joseph P Kennedy

first_imgJoseph Patrick “Joe” Kennedy, a well-known figure in the political and business world of his day, was known to be a ruthless and shrewd operator with a talent for getting what he wanted. He was a scion of the Kennedy family, who must be one of the most famous families in 20th century American history.Members of this old political family have served in both Houses of Congress, as ambassadors, state legislators, and even one president, John F. Kennedy, better known by his initials – JFK.The Kennedy family at Hyannis Port Massachusetts in 1931The first of this famous American political family to make a stir was Patrick Joseph “P.J.” Kennedy, who became a prominent figure in the Boston Democratic Party in the late 1800s.His family had come to the USA from Ireland, and P.J. would father four children, one of whom went on to become the hard-playing father of a president, and would have a distinguished business and political career in his own right.P.J. Kennedy around 1900Joe, under the shadow of his own high-achieving father, and with the legacy and wealth of an established political and business family, began his career at Harvard.He was, of course, encouraged to work hard and set his sights high, and he quickly began to make a name for himself, excelling at baseball and putting his toes firmly on the rungs of Harvard’s social stratosphere of exclusive social clubs.Joe Kennedy at age 25 in 1914, when he claimed to be America’s youngest bank presidentOn October 7, 1914 Joe Kennedy married 24-year-old socialite Rose Elizabeth Fitzgerald. Rose also came from a prominent Irish family, and was a committed Catholic for all of her days.Joe and Rose had several children, but Joe was well-known for having a number of affairs throughout his life, some of which lasted for years, including with his secretary, Janet Des Rosiers, and more famously with the beautiful silent movie actress Gloria Swanson.Rose and Joseph Kennedy arrive for dinner at The Colony Restaurant in Manhattan, November 1, 1940. At the time, Kennedy was the US Ambassador to the UK.There were a number of fairly questionable episodes in Joe’s life. He was a and successful businessman, and such people will always attract criticism, but it’s very possible that this hard-nosed character was indeed involved in some dodgy operations throughout his long and very successful career.According to the Yellow Magpie, notorious mob boss Frank Costello (himself perhaps not the most reliable witness) testified that Joe Kennedy had been closely involved in the bootlegging scene during Prohibition-era America.Frank Costello, American mobster, testifying before the Kefauver Committee investigating organized crimeDuring the period 1920–1933, the production, transportation, import, and distribution of alcoholic drink was made illegal, creating a huge underground import market to supply “speakeasies” – black market drinking dens. There was, of course, a great deal of money to be made, and if Joe did make a cut during this period he certainly would not have been alone!During the 1920s, Joe Kennedy along with others also made a great deal of wealth on the stock market. This era was partly defined by the “long bull market” of the 1920s on the American stock exchange.Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr. on Time magazine cover, 1935This was a long period of growth in prices (in stock market parlance, a “bull” market is one where prices are rising) where there was a lot of money to be made.Today, the practice known as “insider trading” – using inside information which others don’t have access to, to make a profit in stock trading – is illegal, and can carry some serious financial and even jailtime penalties. But the laws governing this were only brought about in 1934, and according to the Yellow Magpie, Joe Kennedy made serious money on insider trading during the bull market of the 1920s; actions which, though hardly moral, were certainly not actually illegal at the time!It was during this era that Joe got into the movie business. He made huge profits buying up and reorganising movie theatres and production studios in Hollywood, but one theatre that would not sell up belonged to Alexander Pantages.Pantages refused an $8 million offer for his theatre chain. Not long after that, Pantages was accused of rape by 17-year-old dancer Eunice Pringle.Joseph P. KennedyAfter a sensational trial he was found guilty and sentenced to 50 years in jail, but his conviction was overturned at appeal. Hollywood legend has it that Joe Kennedy paid Pringle $10,000 to accuse Pantages, and while this has never been proven the fact remains that Pantages’ reputation was ruined, and he eventually ended up selling his theatre chain to Kennedy for a greatly reduced price.The “roaring 20s” ended with a bump in the great wall street crash of 1929, when the stock market plummeted, losing tens of billions of dollars in a matter of days, and leading to the great depression which gripped the whole of the western world for the next 12 years.Joseph P. KennedyDirectly before the crash, the stock market was weakened by a “bear raid” – a stock market tactic where investors drive down the price of a stock to make money on a selling position.In this situation, the investor makes money if the company’s stock loses value. Negative rumours were spread about certain companies and their share price dropped, causing Kennedy and many others to make money out of the crash.Ambassador Joseph Kennedy with Winston Churchill, 1939Joe Kennedy was given the position of Ambassador to Britain. This post had been given to him by then-president Franklin Roosevelt as a reward for Kennedy’s part in the silencing of a dangerously inflammatory Catholic priest, Charles Coughlan, who had risen to notoriety with a series of sectarian and racist radio broadcasts in the 1930s. Joe Kennedy, as a heavyweight leader in the Irish-Catholic community, was able to exert influence there.During his time as ambassador, however, Joe did not shine. As World War Two was brewing, Joe Kennedy supported the policy of appeasement toward German dictator Adolf Hitler, as espoused and so unsuccessfully pursued by then-British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain.Franklin Roosevelt’s nomination of Joseph Kennedy to serve as Ambassador to the United KingdomActing on his own initiative, he actually tried to get personal meetings with Hitler, and in 1940, when war was already raging on the continent, Joe vocally opposed any aid being sent to Britain.Joe had his eye on the US presidency, but his record as Ambassador to Britain was chequered with gaffes. Forced to stand down or be sacked from the role, and he chose to stand down.Joseph Kennedy and family celebrate his birthday in Hyannis Port in 1963The Kennedy family’s story over the 20th century was a dramatic one. By the time Joe died in 1969, he had outlived four of his children, two of whom had been assassinated.Read another story from us: Little Edie, Jackie Kennedy’s cousin lived 20 years in a mansion isolated from the worldHe was certainly a giant in the political scene of his day, and a formative figure in the history of modern America. The Kennedy family continue to be a force in American business and politics, and decedents of Joe Kennedy still hold political office today.last_img read more

Auschwitz Survivor Celebrates 104th Birthday at Western Wall with 400 Descendants

first_imgIt isn’t often we hear the terms “Auschwitz survivor” and “raucous celebration” in the same sentence, but on the 104th birthday of Shoshana Ovitz, that’s precisely the kind of story her life has culminated in. Ovitz, who survived Auschwitz 75 years ago, recently celebrated her 104th birthday, and saw 400 relatives gather for her party at Jerusalem’s Western Wall. Seeing her family – all her family, or at least as many who could make the trip  – gathered at the holy place was Ovitz’s only wish for her monumental occasion. They gathered to celebrate and, perhaps, mourn those who didn’t make it out alive from the notorious camp.Main gate to AuschwitzHer grandson, Meir Rosenstein, told Israeli reporters that his grandmother witnessed many horrible things at Auschwitz, including the sight of her mother’s selection by the cruel Dr. Josef Mengele, infamous for human experimentation. Once released from the camp, Ovitz met her soon-to-be husband, Don Ovitz. He too had survived the camps, although he had lost his wife and four daughters.But the occasion of Auschwitz survivor Shoshana Ovitz’s birthday was one of celebration, rather than somber reflections on the past, at least as much as possible. Her granddaughter, Panini Friedman, told reporters that organizers tried everything imaginable to ensure all of Ovitz’s descendants gathered at the holy site for the party. However, she acknowledged, “we’re missing about 10 percent of them.”The Western Wall in Jerusalem. Photo by Golasso CC by 2.0The party was symbolic of the family’s victory over their captors, but it also represented a triumph for the Jewish people overall. All the guests felt that profound weight, Friedman said. “Everyone was there with tears in their eyes,” she said. “It was very emotional.”Needless to say, the historic gathering was chronicled for posterity, with many taking countless photographs. In one, Ovitz sits in her wheelchair holding the hand of a young boy who could be her great grandson, or perhaps even her great, great grandson. There are at least four generations represented in the group shots. They are visual confirmation of how the Ovitz family, and the Jewish people, survived the war.To celebrate her 104th birthday, #Auschwitz survivor Shoshana Ovitz asked all her descendants come together to #Jerusalem for prayer at the Western Wall.Moving image. pic.twitter.com/hpUgreVOgq— Auschwitz Memorial (@AuschwitzMuseum) August 7, 2019The photos of all the family members posing in front of the Western Wall is a testament to the resilience and determination to overcome the attempt to erase them from the planet. Bringing together everyone for the celebration was no small feat, organizers said, but the family was determined to make it happen, as it was Ovitz’s only wish for her birthday.For her 104th birthday, Shoshana Ovitz, a survivor of Auschwitz, took a picture with her entire family at the Western Wall, sending a powerful message – The Jewish people live on. #NeverAgain via: @JBN pic.twitter.com/j29ra2mbsR— StandWithUs (@StandWithUs) August 8, 2019Many lived outside Israel, some in Europe and some in America. The organizers didn’t even have concrete details about the location of some, but they persevered. While the 400 party goers may not include every family member, everyone agreed the bash was a roaring success.The number of Holocaust survivors is dwindling, not surprisingly. In 2016, a report by the Central Bureau of Statistics in Israel said that only 26,500 survivors will still be alive in Israeli by 2035. That figure includes not just concentration camp survivors, but those from ghettos, labor camps and hiding places, too.Related Video:Time Magazine in 2016 said Holocaust survivors totaled just 100,000 today globally. “The number of eloquent survivors is few and far between,” said Michael Zank, director of the Elie Wiesel Centre for Jewish Studies at Boston University. “It puts the responsibility on the next generation, the children of survivors, (and) the grandchildren of survivors, to become as articulate as we can be in maintaining this memory, and the mandate that comes with it.” In spite of the gloomy prediction that we may soon be facing a world without direct testimony of the Nazi war crimes committed before and during the second world war, it is important to acknowledge that many can continue to tell their stories, and document them for posterity.Related Article: The World’s Oldest Nun who Defied the Nazis and Sheltered JewsBut it’s just as important to pause occasionally to celebrate those who came through, who were able to reclaim their lives, start families, and watch those families flourish and prosper. Like Shoshana Ovitz, 104 years old and still thriving, still looking forward. If that is not a testament to the human spirit, nothing is.last_img read more