Food for the mind and the body: Project 365/6 [Jan. 23, 2012]

Food for thought: Deprivations take the back seat

After a late night journey, a passenger left a bag with five hundred thousand rupees [Rs. 500,000] in a hired autorickshaw in Bangalore, India. K Panduranga, the driver of the vehicle, contacted the police to return the money to the owner. In a country that has been waging a people’s movement against corruption in high places, the humble autorickshaw driver’s honesty has been much admired.

If Panduranga’s economic conditions took the back seat in a commendable act of integrity, so did deprivation of gender in the case of the women achievers [see below] who broke the ‘glass ceiling’ to smithereens, each in their own way.

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“The more we talk about the glass ceiling, the greater disfavour we do to ourselves, as women,” says an Indian woman in a society where women continue to be more vulnerable because of the traditionally patriarchal society. [Kalpana Morparia, CEO, JP Morgan, in ‘Business Standard,’ January 23, 2012.]

Other women’s voices, also in the same publication:

“The proverbial glass ceiling is a … mental construct that women must shatter to fulfil their dreams … I believe that women must never adopt this self-defeating belief in a glass ceiling beyond which they cannot soar.” [Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, Chairman and Managing Director, Biocon]

“Given the size of the women labour force and the scarcity of leadership talent, utilisation of womens’ talent and skills is necessary not just from the micro-perspective of the company but from country’s growth perspective too.” [Shyamala Gopinath, formerly Deputy Governor, Reserve Bank of India]

“Women should regard the glass ceiling as one of life’s obstacles and not ‘The’ obstacle in their career … it would erode once people appreciate the different leadership style of women … Contrary to belief, they [women] tend to take more risks and try out a different way of solving problems than men.” [Preeti Vyas Giannetti, Chairwoman and CEO, Vyas Giannetti Creative]

Food for the palate: Coconut rice

Cook 4 ounces of rice and keep aside to cool. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a pan, splutter a teaspoon of mustard, add a pinch of asafoetida, a teaspoon each of split black gram and split Bengal gram, 5 red chillis and 5 green chillis. When lentils brown, add 4 ounces of finely grated fresh coconut to the hot oil, and stir fry on slow flame till coconut shavings turn golden brown. Add cooled, cooked rice, salt to taste and stir gently over slow flame for a few minutes, till well blended. Eat hot or cold. No side dish required.

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