Patent threat to yoga

It is indeed a pity that American multinationals are now eyeing the business potential of yoga (“Patent piracy” by Vibha Sharma, Spectrum, June 17). Some Indians have shown them the way by themselves seeking patent for what has been christened ‘Bikram-yoga’. No wonder, greedy people have came up with strange concoctions like ‘wine-yoga’ and ‘acro-yoga’ to cash in on the urge for health and peace. But they forget the harm they are doing to the pristine concept and practice of yoga.

It would be a sad day if yoga is patented in this way. The floodgates of patenting in yoga, once opened, will be very difficult to shut if we do not remain vigilant. Moreover, these would affect people all over the world including India, the birthplace of yoga.

Fortunately for us in India, the biggest advance made in the field of public health in modern history has been the yoga revolution brought about by Swami Ramdev. Within a few years, he has popularised yoga not only across the length and breadth of the country but even beyond the shores of India. The result is there for all to see.

Hardly would there be any public park in India where people don’t practise yoga in the morning or evening. Countless others have learnt yoga sitting in front of their TVsets and now practise it in the privacy of their homes benefiting themselves and their families. Interest in yoga has been seen in people of all ages, creeds and communities.



Arki’s murals

Arki’s fort (40 km from Shimla) has magnificent murals of various schools of art that co-exist here with multifarious themes, making it truly ‘a dreamland of artists’ (“In the Company of Art” by Pran Neville (Spectrum, April 29).

The Company School of Art flourished here, too, as is evident from subjects executed in murals that include a British general and his wife seated atop an elephant, a British durbar, British army fighting against State forces, etc. One fresco depicts a woman clad in Victorian dress in a garden. Murals apparently copied from picture postcards show cities of Calcutta, Goa, Florence, Portugal, London and Paris.

However, decay and deterioration due to time and weather, water seepage, peeling plasters of murals, chipped frescos, etc tell a sad tale. While we boast loudly of our culture and rich heritage, we fail to preserve it. A colossal sum is required for this purpose. How can we willfully allow it to vanish into eternity? Who will save the priceless treasure of Arki’s murals?



Learn a lesson from animals

Neeta Lal has admirably thrown light on the myriad reasons behind the obnoxious trend of Caesarian births and its ramifications (“Caesarian births are the trend”, Spectrum, June 3).

Earlier Caesarian section deliveries were performed only in emergency cases in which the mother or the child’s life appeared to be in danger. Now the affluent go for them because they want to flaunt their wealth. The doctors, too, have become avaricious. They do not wait for the natural delivery to take place but go for the Caesarian to make a quick buck and experiment to gain experience. This often happens in private hospitals but is highly unethical.

In this 21st century of information and technology, people are still mired in superstitions or they should know that the mothers of Rabindranath Tagore, C.V. Raman, Newton, Edison, Einstein et al did not give them birth on auspicious days knowingly. Even then, their sons became immortal because of their deeds.

Humans will have to take a lesson or two from the animals who give birth to their young ones in the natural way. Nobody is there to perform a Caesarian on them. Risk of maternity death is there in both natural and Caesarian deliveries. So there is no need to tinker with the natural phenomenon.


Informative piece

Balraj Puri’s article, “The revolt of 1857” (Perspective, May 27) is very informative but I could not understand why in most books it is called the revolt of 1857. In my opinion, it was not a revolt. It was the First War of Independence as it has covered a large area at that time and it played significant role in the development of further movements for Independence.

SATISH SHARMA,Nand Karan Majra (Kaithal)

Spiritual love

The conversation with V.N. Datta (“Sarala Devi: Mystery woman in Gandhi’s life”, Saturday Extra, June 2) reveals the impact Sarala Devi had on the life of Gandhi.

Gandhi was so much fascinated by her virtues that he nurtured spiritual love for her. He even confessed to it in his letters written to Sarala Devi. There was much talk of their relationship in 1920. Sarala Devi, too, wanted to have a legitimate relationship with Gandhi.

However, the near and dear ones of Gandhi intervened and his relationship with Sarala Devi eroded.

Sarala Devi’s husband had expired in 1923. Had Gandhi been a Muslim, he could have gone for a second marriage with Sarala Devi.

D.S. THAKUR, Hoshiarpur



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