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from FaithWorld:

Conservation, religion join to save Ganges dolphin

gangesAs the sun sets over a serene stretch of the mighty Ganges, a pair of smooth, grey dolphins arch gracefully out of the water, bringing hope that wildlife can again call India's great river home. (Photo: Ganges sunset in Allahabad,  31 Dec 2008/Jitendra Prakash)

Millions of Indians along the banks of the 2,500 km (1,550 mile)-long Ganges depend on the river, but unchecked levels of agricultural, industrial and domestic waste have poured in over the past decades, threatening the wildlife.

In Karnabas, a small village just upstream from Narora, a local drama troupe performs for more than 150 villagers. "Humans are polluting our river!" an actor playing a Hindu god declared. "The life of our Mother Ganga is endangered! Please do something!"

Along a northern stretch of the holy river, a Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF) project is leveraging the religious importance of the Ganges for Hindus to teach villagers the virtues of conservation and protection of its sacred water. The upper stretch of the Ganges, from Rishikesh in the foothills of the Himalayas to Ram Ghat in the central state of Madhya Pradesh, holds great religious significance for Hindus.

from India Masala:

Ramayana: Not an epic revisited

It must take a lot of talent to take one of the greatest stories ever told and turn it into a mediocre, boring tale that makes you yearn for Ramanand Sagar to make a comeback with his serialised 'Ramayana'. Chetan Desai's "Ramayana - The Epic", an animated version, tells you nothing new but manages to make one of Hinduism's most revered epics and its characters tacky, B-grade Bollywood extras who uses phrases like "marvayega tu" and sing rap songs in the middle of a jungle before going out to fight against Ravana. I am all for retelling a story but I am afraid Desai goes about this 'Ramayana' with the attitude of a bull in a china shop. He glosses over the childhood years of Rama, deals with his wedding and exile in a half-hour and then moves on to the action -- namely, his fight against Ravana. Important plot points are explained away by a two-line narration and the dialogues, particularly, are amateurishly written. This is certainly not how Hindi was spoken hundreds of years ago. Desai also ends the story with Rama's coronation and leaves out one of the most important parts of the story -- Sita's trial by fire. The animation itself is not much to write home about and Indian audiences may find it hard to accept a Rama sporting washboard abs and a buxom Sita. If you do want to revisit this much-loved epic, I recommend you go back in time to the Sunday mornings of yore. Watching this version is not going to do it.

ramyana1It must take a lot of talent to take one of the greatest stories ever told and turn it into a mediocre, boring tale that makes you yearn for Ramanand Sagar to make a comeback with his serialised 'Ramayana'.

Chetan Desai's "Ramayana - The Epic", an animated version, tells you nothing new but manages to make one of Hinduism's most revered epics and its characters tacky, B-grade Bollywood extras who uses phrases like "marvayega tu" and sing rap songs in the middle of a jungle before going out to fight against Ravana.

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