• Tata Aria didn't come down in the last shower of rain. Tata Motors has matured the learning curve over the years, facing many challenges and crossing many hurdles. Now they are, in every sense of the word, accomplished enough to develop a world-class vehicle; and the result is Tata Aria, the  first indegenous 4X4 crossover.

    Having taken Aria for a short spin, I'm fairly impressed with the vehicle, especially the safety measures. Tata has left no stone unturned, Aria is a potpourri of every feature that you'd expect from a world-class crossover.

    Safety Prime Concern

    Tata has taken safety to new heights. Aria comes with safety features, both active and passive, that only 30 lakh plus vehicles can boast of. While active features like ESP, ABS & EBD to aid steerability and control in emergency braking, six airbags — driver, passenger side and curtain — ensure protection from front as well as side impacts. Passive features include Hydroformed chassis members that enhance strength and

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  • Karnataka Drama: Who’s Who

    A ready reckoner to the protagonists of the ongoing tamasha in Bangalore.

    Intrigued by the drama in Karnataka? Here's a who's who to help you understand its protagonists better.

    BS Yeddyurappa: Karnataka's chief minister was once a lemon vendor plying his trade on a cycle. He then got promoted as a writer (clerk) at a rice mill. The mill owner gave his daughter in marriage to him. (She fell into a sump and died later). Yeddyurappa was the only BJP legislator in the Karnataka assembly in the 1980s. He soldiered on bravely, till the party grew big enough to be able to dream of forming a government. In 2005, he helped the JD(S) dislodge the Congress government. His power-sharing arrangement was a daily nightmare, and at the end of 20 months, when he was to become chief minister, Kumaraswamy simply refused to hand over the reins to him. Within his own party, the Reddy brothers routinely twisted his arm, and in October 2009, even forced him to drop Shobha Karandlaje (rumoured to

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  • Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi — commonly referred to as 'Mahatma', is known the world over as a symbol of truth and non-violence. That's why many may find it surprising to know that the 'Father of the Nation' has his share of detractors.

    Some hold him responsible for the partition of India in 1947 and the resulting bloodshed of both Hindus and Muslims. His decision that India should pay Pakistan Rs 55 crore also drew flak from several quarters. Nathuram Godse assassinated Gandhi in 1948 because he felt that he had betrayed the Hindu cause.

    Now in San Francisco, a group that call themselves the Organisation of Minorities for India are demanding the removal of a statue of Gandhi on the pretext that he was a racist.

    John Cote writes in the San Francisco Chronicle -

    The group was formed four years ago to publicise the oppression of Christians, Buddhists, Dalits, Muslims, Sikhs and other Indian minorities…they say Gandhi was a racist who harboured violent urges.

    The group plans to

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  • 2010 ICC Awards: Double Dhamaka for Sachin

    We were at the 2010 ICC Awards at the Grand Castle in Bangalore.

    Take a look at pictures from the event: Click here

    Here's a look at who won:

    Cricketer of the Year: Sachin Tendulkar Here's what the master blaster said about his first ICC Cricketer of the Year award: Better late than never. He was happy that the team achieved the number one Test team ranking in Decemeber and have maintained it since then. He gave credit to all his fans for the support he has which continues to egg him on.

    Test Cricketer of the Year: Virender Sehwag- Sehwag who has had a spectacular past 12 months in the longer format of the game rated Tuesday's win against Australia as the best win of his career. He said it was privelege to part of the team and that the Indian team has set their sights on winning the ODI World Cup in the coming year.

    ODI Cricketer of the Year: AB de Villiers — We asked AB if he thought the ODI format was still relevant. He said he loved playing all three formats of the game,

    Read More »from 2010 ICC Awards: Double Dhamaka for Sachin
  • Kindness in a Kitchen

    US President Barack Obama, recently embroiled in a "religious" controversy, is likely to visit Amritsar's Golden Temple during his visit to India this year. As I was reading up on it, I came across a very interesting article in the New York Times and I was, for a moment, ashamed that what I knew of the temple was only from scenes from popular Bollywood movies.

    For example, though I knew of the community kitchen at the Temple, the langar, I did not know this — "Sikhism, which emerged in the Punjab region of India in the 15th century, strongly rejects the notion of caste, which lies at the core of Hinduism." Guru Amar Das, the third Guru of Sikhism is said to have established the practice of offering langar (free food) to disciples before spiritual services.

    First food, then God:

    Guru Nanak's tenets of Sikhism endorse two as the most important: Pangat (one row, loosely translated as sitting together in a row and partaking of a meal) and Sangat (association with the good). While it

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  • Suzuki fans worldwide gave a warm welcome to the 2011 Swift, thanks to its more spacious and stylish interior, superior quality cabin and improved dynamics along with the more pronounced exterior design.

    However, carmakers have this not-so-heartening habit of compromising on quality and features when they introduce a model in the Indian market. Reasons may be reasonable for them, but do we really deserve this?

    Now that Maruti is all set to bring the new Swift to the Indian market, the question is, will they again compromise on these new and exciting features?

    The interior images reveal an all-new design which takes inspiration from the recently launched Kizashi sedan. The new instrument panel and keyless push button start-stop system are among the more obvious revisions.

    The new Maruti Suzuki Swift has a 1.2-litre petrol engine which is equipped with Dual VVT (Variable intake and exhaust valve timing) and produces 94PS at 6,000rpm. The improved torque is developed to 118Nm at

    Read More »from Will Suzuki Take Indians Lightly This Time?
  • The Ayodhya land dispute has been a bone of contention between the country's Hindus and Muslims for decades. We answer a few key questions about the history of the disputed holy site.

    What is the Ayodhya dispute all about?

    Hindus and Muslims have quarreled for years over the history of the Babri mosque in Ayodhya, a town in Uttar Pradesh. Hindus claim that the Babri mosque stands over a temple built in honour of Lord Rama. They say that the Babri Mosque was built by Babur's general, Mir Baqi, on the orders of the Mughal leader Babur post destruction of the Ram Mandir in 1528.

    Tension flared up in 1992 when supporters of VHP, Shiv Sena and BJP demolished the Babri mosque, stirring up nationwide riots between Hindus and Muslims which left more than 2,000 people dead.

    Why is the dispute so dangerous?

    Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said the Ayodhya dispute is one of the biggest security challenges in India this year, along with the Maoist insurgency and the Kashmiri

    Read More »from Q&A: The Ayodhya Dispute
  • The Babri Masjid dispute in Ayodhya has been a flashpoint of violence between Hindus and Muslims for decades. Here's a look at the troubled history of the disputed holy site.

    A cross-section of the Hindu community believes that in the 12th century, a temple is built in honour of Lord Rama in Ayodhya.

    1528

    The Babri Mosque is build by Babar's general, Mir Baqi, on the orders of the Mughal leader Babur post destruction of the Ram Mandir.

    1853

    First recorded Hindu-Muslim clashes at the site.

    1859

    The British administration erects a fence to separate the places of worship, allowing the inner court to be used by Muslims and the outer court by Hindus.

    1949

    Idols of Lord Rama appear inside mosque allegedly placed there by Hindus. Muslims protest, and both parties file civil suits. The government proclaims the premises a disputed area and locks the gates.

    1984

    Spearheaded by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad party, Hindus form a committee to liberate the disputed site and build a Ram temple

    Read More »from Timeline: Ayodhya Dispute
  • We love the Swift and there's a reason why we do so. Now, Maruti is giving Swift's fans another reason to rejoice. The one millionth car to be rolled out of the company's plant at Manesar was a Swift and what better way to celebrate it than making Swift more special? Yes, the carmaker is offering an exclusive, limited edition Swift labelled the "Swift One Million Edition".

    The most exclusive thing about the car is the specially created "Goldsmith Black" colour along with splendid graphics or artistic decal on the exteriors. It also sports special integrated stereo with USB and speakers, leather seats, cushions and even foot-mats.

    Swift One Million Edition is available in only one version, VXi (Petrol), at a price of Rs. 4,83,079 (Ex-showroom, Delhi).

    It looks like the car is worth every penny but unfortunately, Maruti is offering just 1000 units of this stunner. So guys, you got to act swiftly to get yourself a piece of this limited edition Swift.

    Well, now tell me whether

    Read More »from A Jazzy Maruti Swift Coming Our Way
  • Well, this might sound inane, but this is real.

    Disney's Pixar Cars has proved the front of a car looks a lot like the human face where headlights are the eyes, but this is taking things a bit far — a company named CarLashes has decided to add more bling to a car's face by offering big, curly headlamp eyelashes. And to add to the glitter, you can even put some sparkly, faux-jewelled 'eyeliners'.

    For some, CarLashes may be silly and goofy, but if Truck Nutz and Miata Teeth exist here, why not CarLashes? However, it's up to you guys to decide whether CarLashes add personality or goofiness to your car.

    Read More »from CarLashes: Sexy or Goofy?

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