Parivartan – A Rock Event Against Corruption

Where there’s a will there’s a way. You might be probably surprised for the usage of this proverb here at this article. But it is true that today, even a small drop can make a considerable change in an ocean. Likewise, to eradicate the evil called corruption from its very root, the youth in the city is working really hard, making people aware at every cost, via different ways, for which we must be proud of.  In the series, Udaipur Talents, and the famous Rock Band “Oxyrock” are organizing an event, “Parivartan – A Rock Event Against Corruption“, on 18th February 2012.

parivartan poster

The step in the form of Social Awareness Mega Event has been appreciated and hence supported by the youth NGO from  Udaipur, Shikshantar, as well as Jago Party. The main attraction for the event will surely be, as of course the name suggests, the famous band Oxyrock with their mind blowing performances, and screening of the movie “Country First” by Shiv Khera. Also, to encourage the participation of the city youth, there will be group dance competition as well as fashion show for Udaipurites. The screening for the same will be done via auditions, which will be held at Central Public School, New Bhupalpura, Udaipur.

The auditions will be taken on 10th and 11th Feb’2012 at 3-5 pm. The entry fees will be Rs. 100 per person, and there can be any song  and theme at the time of audition, but the theme for fashion show on the final day will be Rajasthani, and the group dance competition shall be patriotic (strictly). The group dance winner will be awarded a cash prize of Rs. 5000, and the winner of the Fashion Show will be awarded Rs. 2000 cash.

The main event shall be held at Bhartiya Lok Kala Mandal, from 5:30 pm onwards, and entry to this main event is absolutely free of cost. Your own online portal as well as friend UdaipurBlog is the proud media partner for the same. Do participate in large numbers, and spread awareness against corruption in every possible nook and corner of the society.


Taste Your Health at the Food Festival in Udaipur

Food Fest Welcome

A two day food festival has been organised in the city by Shikshantar, a Non Profit organisation on the theme of Jaso Ann, Vaso Man or You are what you eat. The fest has been organised in the Hanuman Temple at Devali near Fateh Sagar between 4-8 p.m. in the evening. Being a variety food lover I made up my mind to visit the place. When I went there I was warmly welcomed by Mr. Manish Jain, the co-founder of Shikshantar. There were many stalls with mouth watering dishes.

Food Fest Banner

The dishes were few famous national and international cuisines we have often heard of, but they have been modified with the local and healthier contents.  To begin with, I started with Tacos, originally a Mexican dish, but modified as per the regional grains and vegetation stuffs of Rajasthan. The crispy base was prepared of the “Khakhra” and the topping of salads and “Rajma” or red kidney beans. The next attraction was of the Veg Kababs made of beetroot or “Chukandar”, with a nice blend of flavours of coconut and coriander chutney.

The cookie sandwiches made of Mal, Ragi or Finger Millet and fresh fruits stuffed within redefined my dictionary meaning of sweet dish, to a healthier one. Sweet dish made of sanwa, a local foodstuff,  coconut laddoos, pineapple puddings, Jwar ki kheer,  pinapple and Sabudana Kheer , Kokam Sharbat (Squash made of kokam) and Pina Colada (A blend of coconut milk and pineapple juice), Ragi steam bread sandwitches, etc  were few more delicious, yet healthy food items present at the fest.

Mal Cookie Sandwitches
Mal Cookie Sandwitches
Veg Beetroot Kababs With Coriander and Coconut Chutney
Veg Beetroot Kababs With Coriander and Coconut Chutney
Mr. Manish Jain (In Kurta) explaining the qualities and nessecity of Healthy food
Mr. Manish Jain (In Kurta) explaining the qualities and nessecity of Healthy food

“Fast food has always harmed the healthy living. This food fest is in support of the concept of Slow Food movement, or the movement for switching to our home made food with local food stuffs. Today the high price we are paying for our eatables in the market is actually for the bulk amount of pesticides, insecticides, and harmful chemicals which eventually make way to our stomach. The crops like Ragi, Mal, Bajra are available locally and has been grown in villages and tribal areas from ancient times in this region. They have capacity to withstand intense climate changes. They are not so often attacked by insects, pests, etc and have great nutritive values, much greater than our conventional sources such as wheat, milk etc. These things just need to be promoted to the common masses, who want to sustain with a healthy living”

-Manish Jain

I met the enthusiastic team behind this innovative concept. The concept was coined by Manoj Prajapat and Surendra Gandharva, popularly known as Sunny. The team is energetic, confident, determined, and making every effort to promote the healthy living.

“I started working on the concept of Healthy food and healthy alternatives to fast food with Manoj Prajapat. We have worked for many years, and evolved with our idea, and made them better day by day. All the dishes presented here are cooked in zero oil and zero fat (Ghee/Butter), all the stuffs are either in their raw forms or steamed, as every nutritive value is lost on frying or cooking. We haven’t even used the cow’s milk, so as to ensure zero animal content. Coconut milk has been used as its alternative. In the sweet dishes, every care has been taken care of to ensure that there is minimal usage of additional sweeteners, and the natural sweetness has been emphasized. Still, wherever needed, we have used Gud and Misri instead of sugar.”

– Surendra Gandharva

The Food Fest will be continuing today also, with an entirely different menu than yesterday. This fest is open to all. This is a healthy initiative, and I recommend all to give a visit and taste the health. 🙂

Udaipur Speaks

Green Leaf Ratings: A concept for Zero Waste Udaipur

Greenleaf Ratings_Eco friendly Udaipur

Udaipur is one of the most sought out tourist destinations in India. With a rich history, culture and ecology, thousands of people come to visit this beautiful lake city every year. To develop Zero Waste Udaipur, Shikshantar in association with the Lonely Planet Guide Book, has been motivating hotels and tourists to make their practices more ecologically and culturally friendly. The Greenleaf Rating is one way Shikshantar has devised to help hotels take stock of their ecological footprint and be mindful to protect Udaipur’s traditional culture.

zero waste concept
This conversation around eco-friendly tourism in Udaipur began in 2007 between Shikshantar and tourists in the city. Tourists were asked what they thought of the environmental practices in Udaipur and expressed what green alternatives they would like to see from hotels. Their feedback, as well as research conducted by Shikshantar on the best practices from around the world, contributed to the making of a survey for hotels to measure their eco and culturally friendly efforts.
Association with the Lonely Planet began in 2008 when the Lonely Planet expressed interest in the Greenleaf rating and offered to publish a link to Shikshantar’s work on eco hotels in Udaipur. Shikshantar rated the hotels mentioned in the Lonely Planet based on a range of criteria from segregation of waste, to solar energy, to rainwater harvesting, to organic food, to promotion of local art and culture. The link to these findings were published in the 2009 edition of the Lonely Planet.
A team at Shikshantar has just updated its ratings of 35 hotels in Udaipur. They found that there have been improvements in the ecological practices of many hotels, especially in terms of solar water heating, energy saving practices, rainwater harvesting and organic food. Among budget hotels, Lal Ghat Guest House, Hotel Lake Star, and Nukkad Guest House scored the highest. Among mid-range hotels Udai Kothi, Pahuna Haveli, and Hotel Ram Pratap scored the highest. Among high end hotels, Udaivilas, Fatehgarh and Lake Palace Hotel scored the highest.
According to Vishal Singh Dhaybai, coordinator of the survey for Shikshantar, “We would love to see the momentum continuing and would like to support hotels in creating 1) a culture of segregation and re-use of “waste”, 2) water and energy conservation and 3) use of bio-degradable cleaning products, 4) filtered water re-fill stations to minimize use of plastic bottles. Tourists are also becoming more conscious of the need to minimize their ecological footprint and we hope this also encourages hotels to go green”. All the ratings have been posted on the Shikshantar website

For more details on the Green Leaf Ratings and Zero Waste Udaipur, contact Vishal Singh Dhaybai at Shikshantar (tel. 0294-245-1303; email

By UdaipurBlog Guest author Rehana Tejpar.


Experiments and Explorations: A Workshop on Theatre

Experiments and Explorations” was a 5 day theatre workshop at Shikshantar with one guiding theme: “The audience”. We explored different means of audience participation, and discussed the many ways in which the theatre can interact with its public. The workshop consisted of exercises, games and creation techniques- looking at the links between theatre with the visual arts, music, dance and street performances. The objective was not only to explore the art form of the theatre, but to try and understand how it might be able to play a part in social and political commentary.

The workshop resulted in a small performance on the street outside Shikshantar. Working with the theme of “Nature”, the participants reflected on the changes that are taking place in our environment – the causes, the effects and the possible solutions.

Theatre Workshop (1)Theatre Workshop (2)

Theatre Workshop (3)Theatre Workshop (4)

By UdaipurBlog Guest Author – Nandita Dinesh



About the Author

Nandita DineshNandita Dinesh is from Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu and has an M.A. in Performance Studies from the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. A recipient of the Watson Fellowship, Nandita pursued a project entitled “All the world is a stage: Using theatre to address conflict”; and as such, traveled to Guatemala, Northern Ireland and Rwanda understanding the role that theatre played during/ after the conflict in question. She has coordinated community theatre related efforts in India, Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Northern Ireland, the United States, Costa Rica, Guatemala and Mexico.


Cycle Yatra: A trip to our roots of Culture and Nature

THE SWAPATHGAMI CYCLE YATRA LEFT UDAIPUR ON JAN 9, 2011. They will return on the 13th. There were 17 yatris from Rajasthan, MP, Maharashtra, Delhi, Mysore, Gujarat, UP. Many were students of Swaraj University. Several yatris dressed up as animals such as polar bear, penguin, tiger, elephant, etc to raise attention to the global warming and climate change issues. The yatra was organized by Shikshantar.

Cycle Yatra

For those who are new to the cycle yatra idea, it is a weeklong cycle trip into rural Rajasthan. What sets this trip apart from a general cycle trip is that we do not carry any money, electronic gadgets, food or first aid medicines with us. We stop at villages along the route and find work to earn our board and lodge.

While each participant’s learning and experience from such a trip is unique, the general thinking behind such a trip is –

  • We go manual for transportation and basically burn off some calories that we have so lovingly accumulated despite being cholesterol conscious.
  • We go slow (rather than breeze thru in fast cars) and so get a better chance at appreciating nature and rural life.
  • We interact with the local people (rather than just buy stuff off them with money power) in the course of creatively managing our board and lodge.
  • We get a peek into village life and in the process learn skills that we have lost by virtue of being part of the ‘developed’ society. We can also share some skills that we have.
  • We develop an appreciation for local knowledge and skills and the ability to thrive in what nature has provided.
  • We develop some trust in the ability of nature to take care of us and in the goodness of human beings rather than having to constantly struggle for one’s existence as if it is one long battle against nature and other human beings.
  • We get some time to reflect on our own lives
  • We loosen a little the tight stranglehold that money has over our minds and learn that alternative ways to live might exist.

And let us not forget that most important is to enjoy nature, creating music, dance, theatre, games and have a fun filled adventure! This is a real chance to re-connect to the gift culture.

Check out the film from the first yatra to get an idea of the adventure…

We will cycle about 100 km from Udaipur to Jaisamand. The whole region is culturally very rich and still has some jungles left.

What you need to bring along (and remember that everything you bring along has to be carried by you on your bike)-

  1. Personal clothing.
  2. Some bedding (sleeping bag, blanket etc)
  3. Water bottle (if you have a non-plastic one)
  4. Bikes can be rented at nearest town

More Photos From the Cycle Yatra-

Cycle Yatra_More_photos

Cycle Yatra_More_photos

By Guest Author- Manish Jain

Featured Reviews

Jazbaa – A move towards better Women life

“Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere”

Rama Barhat is a 17 year old girl from Udaipur who has decided not to continue her school education just after finishing examination of tenth boards yet she has given an identity to our city for her short movie called Jazbaa selected for the Women’s Voices Now film festival based in New York. She learned this clip making through fifteen days workshop over movie making during her summer vacation two years back ,  when she came in contact with  a social organization called Shikshantar just to spent time as after tenth exam students have long period of holidays near about two three months. From the very first day of her learning process about movie making create an interest in her, she felt it like creative kind of stuff. She was completely inspired with her Colleagues at Shikshantar and found that education can never be an essential aspect for any kind of work like degrees can never be put above all. After fifteen days of workshop she was continue to learning movie making tips from her colleagues at same social group along with movie making Rama had learned so many different kind of creative objects too.

Rama Barhat - An Udaipie selected for WOMEN's VOICE NOW fest at New York

Her learning process was still continue throughout the vacation and now it was the time when vacation was about to finish as her result was declare and he passed it. As result came out her parents ask her to choose her optional subject for having admission for eleventh class but she denied for taking admission her parents tried to make her understand that education is most important tool in today’s world but she didn’t agree. She told her parents “That education and degrees has nothing to do with talent. If my presence is not in any particular task then degrees has no value, nobody knows who Rama is”. After this conversation her father didn’t enforce her to join school somehow her father had belief that she will do something better out of it, but her mother still forcing her to join school but Rama was not interested in school going education. Finally Rama’s mother agreed to send her for movie making course but she ask Rama to continue her further education by correspondence. She rate enthusiasm even above educational skill.”

Rama learned so many different types of movie making tricks ,  she has attended two workshops fifteen days in each session held in Udaipur itself then after she has gone to Goa to attend a workshop. Then she came back to Udaipur and thought to create a movie with Udaipur and its people so Rama has chosen Manju Khatri for her movie, who is not an ordinary woman. She’s taken Stepped ahead over a male dominated society the only way she knows – driving an auto rickshaw in Udaipur. The only female rickshaw driver, she has a faithful following of clientele , especially among children going to school. This movie was named as Jazbaa, which is now selected for the Women’s Voices Now film festival based in New York on fourth November 2010. A

Rama has started her first movie with Manju Khatri, a woman who is a lesson for other women that if you have strong desire to fulfil your aim then definitely you will get success. Rama has achieved not only working with movie making, also developed her writing skills as well and publishes a magazine called Rama Panthi.

Being from Udaipur now it’s time to support and praise Rama’s achievement by voting for her so that she can achieve the first prize in New York fest .

Here is the link to Vote for her: