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Lifestyle

Don’t Underestimate the Power Of Brisk Walk

Walking has always been my convenient exercise. It imparts ample benefits to the people of all age-groups. One doesn’t need to bother about going to the gym or spending hours in the vicinity of machines. Walking is the best exercise, though yet to be declared officially;)
A few years back, I discovered the power of Brisk Walk. Not only did I feel more energetic, but the brisk walk routine also brought me back to shape in a shorter period. About 30 minutes of fast walking brings remarkable results and by the end of this article, you will agree with me.

Imagine a person is walking faster than the other people in a park. He is covering the same distance in 30 minutes, the others cover in 50 minutes. We want to know if he gets more benefit than those who walk at an average speed. I got the answer to my query and I’m sharing the same with you.

BENEFITS OF BRISK WALK

1) You can reduce your weight considerably by walking briskly without changing your lifestyle and it is scientifically proven. This is the coolest incentive as people can follow this relatively easier way to stay trim. Invest just 30-60 minutes a day walking faster than usual and get visible results.

2) You stay young and suffer from lesser psychological disturbances. Yes, it is again true. Walk in the fresh air to make the most of the walk schedule. Walking increases the rate of the exchange of gases (oxygen in, carbon dioxide out) and refreshes brain. And all of you are aware that it is brain that controls everything in our body.

3) The purpose of walk changes from merely reducing weight to getting fitter and smarter. You will look great in the new toned body as the benefits of brisk walk are not going to end here:p

4) While walking, you exert most of your muscles everyday. Your movements become smoother as the toning up of muscles is executed in routine. Overall health improves and the perspective of life changes too; for the better.

5) Overall health improves and your chances to live longer increase. Brisk walk, if managed in a proper manner shows magnificent outcomes. If you walk and are not getting visible results, increase your speed.

6) Better result in less time is the fundamental benefit of brisk walking. Take charge of your life and buckle up to win the race of health. Hardly 30-40 minutes a day are needed to become a health icon.

7) Not only the outer look, but your internal organs will also show improved fitness. Hearts of those people who walk or run are healthier than the others.

8) Scientists claim that brisk walk is healthier than running.

[ Running reduced the risk of heart disease by 4.5% while walking reduced it by 9.3%.

Calorie for calorie, walking also had a stronger impact on heart disease risk factors. The risk of first-time high blood pressure was reduced by 4.2% by running and 7.2% by walking.

First-time high cholesterol risk was lowered by 4.3% by running and 7% by walking.

The risk of first-time diabetes was reduced by about 12% by both walking and running.]

Walking is the best route to the healthy living. Be a little brisk in routine to make an impact on yourself and the society:)

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Lifestyle

Need to Control What Children Are Watching

One of the most crucial issues today is that we are losing control over the content our children watch. When we were kids, it was easy for our parents to know what we were watching on television. There were limited gadgets, thanks to the technological revolution that spared our generation to some degree. We were happy reading comics, playing board-games and watching very limited television shows.

*Cut to the present day scenario.

Children are exposed to smart televisions, smarter-than-humans mobile phones and many other gadgets quite early in life. Last two decades have been a roller coaster ride with the accessible-technology. The curiosity of human mind brought wonders in our lives and we are sincerely grateful for this. Nothing comes for free and a spike in the technology made everything easily available. Trouble began when psychological disturbances began to ruin our peaceful environment.

As technology was developing, devils like rude behaviour, violence, sexual abuse etc started eating up the goodness of mankind. Reasons could be anything but the striking one seems to be the uncontrolled access to information.

Need to Control What Children Are Watching

Control What Children Are Watching

Problems were there in the past.
Problems are here in the present.
Only the kind and intensity vary.

Children who have delicate brains are the most affected by the crude spread of knowledge. They are given access to the communication devices right after their birth. Pictures are clicked and shared to get likes. The television, the mobile phone, the iPad, the PC, the gaming gadgets; all fantasy things make a significant space in the child’s brain.

Can you mention the culprits that are slowly infecting the young minds?

The new generation is showing traits that were unthinkable in the past. Who would have thought to struggle to save children from these peculiarities 👉

1. Signs of Violence
2. Signs of Intolerance
3. Inclination to Racism
4. Lack of concentration
5. Lack of respect for elders
6. Increase in stress level
7. Interest in passive entertainment
8. Less involvement in family issues
9. Bad health symptoms
10. Sexual abuse

The situation is going out of control. By giving freedom to our children to watch anything, we are literally deteriorating the moral quality of our family and more importantly, our society.

What can we do now?

🐞 First of all, accept it as a mistake. Providing everything to young children is not affection or care. I know you can afford but catering to the child’s appetite is also essential. Just as you don’t give excess food to the child to prevent physical illness, put control on the material he watches.

🐞 There is no need to introduce the child to flashy gadgets only because you can afford to. Child’s brain is too sensitive to handle the elements, the gadgets display.

🐞 We have access to the parental locks and age-appropriate content. Take some time to regulate the shows watched by your children. It’s good for their development.

🐞 You can limit the time, your child spends with gadgets. TV, mobile phones, gaming devices and other equipment distract the delicate minds of kids and makes them passive in learning.

🐞 Don’t use television as a baby-sitter. As a responsible parent, it’s your duty to raise the child in a good environment. Read him books, play with him or take him to the playground. You can not be a stimulus to spoil your child’s life.

Thought-provoking reads👉

Is there a relation between ADHD and TV?

How to deal with media violence

***

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You might be interested in buying a Kindle for your children!👇🏻

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Lifestyle

10 Benefits of Eating Local Food

Eating local food is believed to be healthier, tastier and more nutritious than the food transported from distant places. During my supermarket visits, I’m tempted to buy colourful vegetables and fruits that are not grown locally. Everybody wants a change and such food items look bright and inviting; as if saying, ” Come, pick me up!”;)

It’s okay to have these fruits and vegetables once in a while but local food is the best for everyday consumption.

Benefits Of Eating Local Food

They have committees, researchers, proven results to show that local food is better than the food imported from distant places.

What exactly is Local Food?

Local Food is the food that’s grown, manufactured or produced within a 100-mile radius of the consumer’s home. People who choose locally produced food for consumption are called Locavores. The popular ‘100-mile diet‘ has the same basis; that is buying and eating food that’s produced withing 100-mile radius of one’s place.

Benefits

Here are some benefits listed to get an idea of how effective local food can be!

1) Fresh and Nutritious

Food grown around the place you live is of superior quality and undoubtedly, fresh. I mean, the chances of getting good quality food produced near home are better than the food from distant places. This home-food is likely to be more nutritious than that imported.
Prefer buying local produce and stay healthy.

⭐⭐⭐Food such as broccoli, green beans, kale, red peppers, tomatoes, apricots and peaches are susceptible to nutrient loss when harvested and transported from longer distances, while those that are heartier such as apples, oranges, grapefruit and carrots keep their nutrients even if they travel long distances.

2) Good For Environment

You cut down on carbon footprints by purchasing local goods. Locally produced food doesn’t have to travel thousands of kilometres to reach you. More fuel means more pollution that increases unhealthy gases in the environment. Simply eat local to minimize the extent of dangers we are facing today.

3) Supports Local Farmers

By eating locally grown food, we are indirectly supporting local farmers. It means prosperity and happiness will prevail around you. With more demand, farms will be updated with the latest technology to handle the supply.

4) Supports Local Economy

As local farms flourish because of the better market, the economy is bound to expand.
Money spent in the local market stays in the local market resulting in booming the economy.

5) Less Wastage of Food

Since distance travelled by food is small, less food is wasted in distribution, warehousing and merchandising. Spoilage is limited and can be controlled.
This way, you are helping humanity by saving food. At the same time, the good quality of the food can be assured.

6) Taste Better, New Flavours

Now that you have limited yourself to eat local food, explore new flavours that are waiting to surprise you. Good, nutritious food is found near you and you are searching for it around the world.
Discover the new foods you’ve never tasted. Yes, you’ll find it in tune with nature.

7) Encourages Sustainable Agriculture

Sticking to the Local food implies encouraging sustainable agriculture, and facilitating tracking the supply chain back to the point of origin to evaluate ecological practices. This enhances economic growth, environmental protection and social health.

8) Less Travelling

This is another benefit of eating local. Easily available local food can be obtained from local markets easily with the guarantee of freshness and purity. Products from far off places are brought by some means of transportation with a little assurance of freshness and purity.

9) Good for Soil

When people start buying more local produce, farmers will grow diverse crops making the soil more fertile. When the same crop is grown over a large area for a long duration of time, the quality of soil deteriorates.

10) Connected Communities

Giving importance to local produce can boost community interactions, thereby connecting people through market transactions.
Such markets are buzzing hubs of a community. People interact on a regular basis and stronger bonds are developed.

**
Local Food takes lesser time to reach your plate from the farm, it’s healthier and tastier. Instead of hitting the supermarket, visit the local market to buy local fruits, vegetables and other products. Support and promote your neighbourhood. A definite route to celebrating health and safety!

****

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What I learnt from Blogchatter Creative Writing E-course

What I learnt from Blogchatter Creative Writing E-course

As many of you already know, the ever-learning, ever-evolving bloggers community, Blogchatter is conducting the ‘Creative Writing E-course’ from March to June 2019.

🍁The first phase of the course included ‘Understanding the nuances of creative writing’ where we attended live sessions and chats with renowned writers on Blogchatter’s social media platforms.
I was a part of some chats and watched the recorded versions of those I missed. I’m writing about what I learnt in the first phase of the e-course.

🍁 It was an opportunity for the blogger community to interact with the famous Indian author and journalist, Aditya Sinha. He gave us tips on how to write gripping non-fiction.

What I learnt from Aditya Sinha

1) While writing in Non-fiction genre, make your content interesting to capture your reader’s attention for long.

2) If you want to blend facts with creative liberties, go for ‘Faction’ means using real-life characters in your creative writing.

3) Internet is a vast source from where one can get information to write Non-fiction.

4) Whichever genre you are writing, be confident to pass the same enthusiasm to your readers.

5) Reading is your only reliable source if you are writing Non-fiction. Don’t write on the basis of what you hear.

6) To make Non-fiction an interesting read, you can plan it in non-chronological order.

7) Who reads Non-fiction?
People who want to learn and hunt for revelations pick up the Non-fiction first. Write for them. Sometimes truth gets hidden in the misty lies, your job is to unveil the reality.

🍁Dipankar Mukherjee was another author who gave us some serious Creative Writing goals. Please find below some quick notes on what I learnt from the famous fiction writer.

1) Entertainment-factor is very important for creative writing though it varies from person to person. Some like emotional stories whereas others may find commercial stories entertaining.

2) Gain knowledge about the topic you are writing on by reading.

3) Select your theme cautiously. You should be clear on who will read your stuff.

4) Think about the ideas that will make your writing stand out.

5) Write on the theme, you have some real-life experience in. Don’t go for the theme just because it is popular.

6) Give a personal touch to your writings. It will distinguish you from the other writers and make your identity unique in the market.

🍁 Importance Of Keeping A Writing Schedule
The article by Andaleeb Wajid suggests keeping a schedule for writing if you want yourself to be a productive and focused writer. I think this is one of the most important tips I have to practise. By allotting 3-4 hours a day to my writing, I can think of reaching my aim.

🍁 Second phase of the ‘Creative Writing e-course’ is DOCUMENTING THE UNDERSTANDING, what I’m doing here.

🍁 Phase three will begin in June when Blogchatter will give writing based prompts for evaluation.

🍁When I registered for the Creative Writing e-course by Blogchatter, I hoped to learn nuances of good blog writing. I attended some chats and live interactions with renowned authors and learnt how they plan their writings. I must say it has been a fulfilling experience.

🍁The best thing that I learnt during the e-course is yet to be shared:)
From the live interactions with the published authors, I got to know my genre. I found that most of my posts are non-fiction. It attracts me, it prompts me to pick up the pen and write. Non-fiction with creativity makes it interesting and attracts readers; this is another important lesson learnt from the e-course. I’m grateful to the team Blogchatter for guiding me in the right direction:)

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Lifestyle

Why the Religion?

Why the Religion

I’m quite sure when they started the concept of Religion, the aim was to bring peace and harmony in the society. Evolving from hunter-gatherers to a part of agrarian cultures, there was a need to practice self-control and patience. These social skills were needed to stay together to mature into better beings. The wiser men came up with the ideas of Religion and God.

The question arises, “Is God a delusion?”

Religion came into existence to bring people closer to each other. The question is not whether God exists or not. There has to be some affinity that binds living things together. An unknown, unseen force takes control of each phenomenon in this universe. And this particular force is named as God!

The man was an animal like other animals. He used to kill other animals, fight brutally for a piece of meat and roam about naked. Without any feeling of apology, he snatched, killed and forcibly acquired belongings of others. At that time, religion was introduced. One thing is clear that religion made humans better than the animals.

Today, the man who was one among the animals is far more superior than the rest of living creatures. He is a cultured animal who stays within his boundaries… Or you have something else to say? I know what’s in your mind.

The journey from animal to human was not easy. But the return journey is easier. I’m not overstating but the man is on his way to get lost in the wilderness again. I don’t endorse any religion but there has to be a control on the freedom humans enjoy. If sympathy and empathy do not occur naturally, that’s happening now, fear of the unknown should be there.

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Pyramids of Egypt – Science, Aesthetics and Tradition

Pyramids of Egypt – Science, Aesthetics and Tradition

Egyptian pyramids have always caught my fancy. Gigantic structures standing majestically seem to tell a story we all want to know. There’s an air of mystery surrounding the pyramids that make them look fascinating. Though never been to Egypt, I’ve always been inquisitive about the epitome of perfection.

‘When, why and how’ were these pyramids built are the questions to be followed. Join me as I explore the probable answers.

1)When were the Pyramids Built

There was a time when Egypt was one of the richest and most powerful civilisations of the world. The construction of the Pyramids is supposed to be linked to the powerful people of the era. Pyramids were built from the beginning of Old Kingdom to the fourth century A.D. but the most important period of pyramid building is considered to be from the third dynasty to the sixth dynasty, 2325 B.C. After many years of construction, about 4500 years, the Pyramids are still magnificently erected to give a reflection of the golden era.

2) Why were the Pyramids Built

The Egyptian King, Pharaoh was given unique, respectable place in the society. The Pharaoh was considered to be a mediator between the God and the people of earth. It was believed that the mediator or the Pharaoh was chosen by God Himself.
After death, the Pharaoh was supposed to become Osiris, the God of the dead. Egyptians believed that the spirit of the King wouldn’t leave his body even after his death. They would mummify the corpse of the Pharaoh and bury him with everything he might need in the afterlife. Gold, clothes, utensils and food used to be buried along the Pharaoh.

3) How were the Pyramids Built

This is the most difficult question to answer. Can you imagine thousands of Egyptian workers carving millions of stones each one weighing no less than 2-3 tonnes! Fetching those stones to Pyramid the site and hoisting them up one by one to place in an exact position to perfection. Impossible, isn’t it?

Yes, it is.

One thing is clear from the above discussion that the Pyramids were not constructed as we construct buildings today. The technology used was far more advanced and superior.

The Egyptians raised these huge structures without the knowledge of the wheel. We can’t imagine cutting big stones with primitive tools. One revolutionary hypothesis is that the Pyramid blocks were cast as concrete, instead of carved.
They used man-made stone that looked exactly like natural rocks. The limestone blocks were cast in situ, used an advanced technology which was lost with the extinction of the civilisation.

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A Day without smartphone- Longest Horror Story

A Day without smartphone- Longest Horror Story

BANGGGG!
What was it?
It was the sound that kept me awake for the next twenty-four hours.
The sound that tore my heart into innumerable pieces.
The sound that filled my mind with many fears of ‘What if?’ and ‘How to?’
.
.
Yes, it was the breaking sound of my beloved smartphone. My students were watching else I would have burst into tears. I was in a state of shock and the moment seemed to be the last moment on the earth.
“How could you?” I came to life with the ‘sympathetic words’ from one of my colleagues. The tears waiting to flow managed with wet eyes and self-control.

I had spent a moolah to grab the eye-catching handset. No need to mention but it was the best thing I had at the time it slipped from my hand with a bang! The tragedy of my life.
Couldn’t believe my eyes that my smartphone was lying in a pool of glass.

This.

This is the case with everybody out there. We keep our smartphones closer than anything else. The fear of losing a smartphone is more common than the fear of losing a loved one. Unbelievable, but this is what studies show.

Back to my case.
I took the broken phone to the mobile store and they promised to change the glass in twenty-four hours.

Heartbroken, I returned home only to come back at the scheduled time. These twenty-four hours made it to the most difficult hours of my life. There was an end to making calls, sending messages, listening to music, watching movies and the extra-long chatting sessions! I found that I’ve stopped looking at the clock to check time, the smartphone has become such a necessity!

The smartphone is a smart invention that keeps track of all our stuff. The irony is that we forget to update ourselves while updating our smartphones. Smartphones are becoming smarter and humans are going in the opposite direction;)

A study shows that the Mere Presence of One’s Own Smartphone Reduces Available Cognitive Capacity.

The attention span, memory and reasoning suffer substantially as our smartphone becomes smarter.
The question is, “Can we go back to the less smart days to make up for lost intelligence?”

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Google Blog Compass-  Blog Stats on your tips

Google Blog Compass- Blog Stats on your tips

Finally, Google rolled out an app catering to the needs of bloggers. ‘Blog Compass’ is an Android app to access all blog statistics at one point. The app is exclusively designed for Indian Bloggers as a one-stop solution to access blog data. It tracks traffic, visitors information, comments, the presence of your blog on search engines and so on. Blog Compass even suggests you topics based on your interests and current trends.

‘Blog Compass’ is available for English and Hindi speaking users of India. WordPress.com and Blogger.com users can connect their accounts to the app and get started. The app will automatically update the blog traffic, comments, traffic sources and demographic information. Google Blog Compass also records the blogger’s post history and based on trends, it suggests personalised topics. This helps bloggers in making the right decision while posting content.

The app is currently in open beta and in the process of adding new features and fixing bugs on the basis of the feedback by new users. All are welcomed to help shape the future of the blogging app by sharing their views.

I’m one of the first few to download the app.

The app finds for me, the blog views, comments and topics based on my interests. It has a Learning Center where I can find SEO tips to optimize my content and promote the website. Connect with Google Analytics and Google.com will open innumerable options for you. ( Mine is pending though;)

Want more?

What can be a better prompt than these badges?:)

Tracking your blog’s statistics is a lot easier with Google Blog Compass. You can download the application and start your journey to be among Google’s top rankers.

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Some (Animals) Are More Equal Than Others

Some (Animals) Are More Equal Than Others

Equality is the most fundamental feature of democracy. Discrimination and unequal opportunities may lead to disharmony and leave a negative impact on the society. Individual interests are hurt and the economy suffers. Here I would like to take you on the journey of ‘Animal Farm’.

Animal Farm’, the novel by George Orwell is the literary reflection of events that led to the Russian Revolution in 1917. The story is set in an animal farm where animals revolted against the farm owner and elected their own leaders to run the farm smoothly.

Seven Commandments of Animalism were adopted:

*Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy.
Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend.

*No animal shall wear clothes.

*No animal shall sleep in a bed.

*No animal shall drink alcohol.

*No animal shall kill any other animal.

*All animals are equal.

The last one being the most important of all. “All animals are equal.”

With time the animal leaders (mostly pigs) started behaving like humans. They wore clothes, carried whips and walked on two legs. The seven commandments got squeezed into single commandment:

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”

A satire on “Equality”, the novel tickled my thinking cells. Putting a question mark on the fairness of the society, we see many people in democracy enjoying more privileges than others. Those in power try to exploit weaker sections. Money and other privileges are the authority of those few. Where is equality?

The whole concept of equality is faulty. No two people are alike. With the difference in personalities, surroundings, innate qualities together with position and authority, how can equal rights be assured?

Let us ignore the above factors and consider the right to equality valid.

Right to equality in “The Constitution says that the government shall not deny to any person in India equality before the law or the equal protection of the laws. It means that the laws apply in the same manner to all, regardless of a person’s status. This is called the rule of law.”

It has been 71 years of Independence and we’re still struggling(?) to find what the meaning of ‘Right To Equality’ is. Though working continuously towards achieving the dream of equality, some verdicts are taking long time to get delivered.
Latest in the row-
In India, making sexual preferences was not free till the verdict by Supreme Court on 6th September’ 18.
Some countries gave this privilege to its natives a few years back and many are still struggling to find the credibility of queer human colours. Equality?

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Fitting into Old Jeans

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Fitting into Old, Skinny Jeans

How does it feel like fitting into old skinny jeans? For me, it is the best feeling ever. Better than going to shop for new jeans with a new, bigger size. Better than receiving a gift of cool, trendy jeans. For me, it is Indeed a proud moment when old jeans adjust to my newly acquired body shape. Or, should I say the proud moment when my hard work starts showing the result in the form of “Fitting into old jeans”!

Fitting into old jeans is one of the most difficult tasks on the earth. I don’t have any idea about other planets though;)
Cut your favourite food without cheating, hit the gym and don’t skip, exercise and be regular in it…Gosh! There are so many conditions but the reward is worth it. You will fit into your old, skinny jeans. That means you’re in a better shape and saving some bucks to get more from your life. The incentives won’t stop here.
Health will definitely show improvement. Chances are that you’ll live a decade or two more by controlling your urge to binge and Fitting into Old, Skinny jeans😀

In the process, you may gain some good friends. Wait a minute. I don’t guarantee that you won’t lose friends. For the so-called friends who live to eat will have no interest in you. If you can afford to lose such bingers, go ahead and work out for Fitting into Old, Skinny Jeans!

Looking good is our ultimate intention. When it comes with an added benefit of good health, one should not object. We all know our bodies. We know how to get into better shapes. With this soft reminder about the advantages, I hope to see more people in their old jeans. Well, how about starting a trend #FittingIntoOldJeans;)

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Kerala disaster- What We Can Do!

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Kerala disaster- What We Can Do!

Heartening to see Humanity break barriers to help Kerala when it’s struggling to heal itself after the destruction caused by furious floods.
Floods played havoc with God’s own country and bewildered we are. The floods are bigger than the infamous floods of 1924 (Known as ‘The Great Flood of 99’– 99 for Malayalam year 1099). Kerala is sandwiched between the Western Ghats on the eastern side and Arabian sea on the west. A large number of rivers originate from western ghats, flow through Kerala and end up in the Arabian sea. Dams are many, most of them are in the Periyar River which starts from Idukki and flows through Ernakulam before ending up in the Arabian sea.
Natural calamities don’t always come with a warning, else Kerala would have prepared in advance; better than any other state of India.

What caused Kerala floods:

1) Heavy rains caused by temperature difference between Bengal sea and Arabian sea. The air from the Arabian sea made an effort to cross the Western Ghats and a part of it reached Bengal sea. Other part struck in the western ghats and caused heavy rainfall and flooding in Kerala

2) There are many dams in Kerala and most of them are built on Periyar River which starts from Idukki and flows through Ernakulam before ending up in the Arabian Sea.
The incessant rains forced the authorities to open the gates of these dams.

3) Human activities like encroachments, cutting of trees in abundance, mining etc has already reduced the safety of Kerala region.

4) There was a part mistake by the authorities. Shutters of dams were not opened till the eleventh hour. They said that the reservoirs usually get filled up the brim every season and they never find the necessity to open the dam gates.
However, nature was not so kind this year.

Now the question is what we can do!

Kerala is our neighbouring state who has experienced a heavy disaster. Though the rains have stopped pouring, the rehabilitation of people is the major challenge before authorities. Let’s hold our brother Kerala’s hand and try our best to rebuild the state. Sharing here some important links where you can contribute.

I) KeralaFloodRescue.com

keralafloodrescue.com

II) Contribute to CM’s Distress Relief Fund (CMDRF)

donation.cmdrf.kerala.gov.in

III) Donate Online

Account number: 67319948232

Bank: State Bank of India

Branch: City branch, Thiruvananthapuram

IFS Code: SBIN0070028

PAN: AAAGD0584M

Name of Donee: CMDRF

IV) Volunteer

Kerala Flood Resources – Updated Live –

https://t.co/WN4MBzAE5A

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