Sunday, February 24, 2019

Why You Should Visit India if You’re Looking for Spirituality

India is the birthplace of yoga. For centuries, there has been spiritual development happening in India. There are many sacred places you can visit and temples everywhere. Hinduism is the base foundation of Buddhism. You can meditate here and even do your yoga teacher training. It is the source of many spiritual practices you may do at home. Many travelers come here specifically to go on a soul-searching journey.

1. Yoga Immersion in Rishikesh
Rishikesh is a special place for your spiritual pursuits because it is the birthplace of yoga. Many people flock here to meditate or take their yoga teacher training. You can do many different kinds of yoga retreats here or just spend time near the Ganges River in contemplation. There are hills on three sides of Rishikesh so there’s a sense that you’re nestled. A place of peace, there are many wonderful hikes you can take and healthy vegetarian food options. Haridwar is close by too so you can visit it while you’re here. This has a great deal of significance with Hindu pilgrims.

2. Visiting Holy Haridwar

Haridwar means the “Gateway to God.” It is considered to be a top place for holiness in India. It is one of the oldest cities too. The city sits at the foothills of the Himalayas which gives it a deeply spiritual feeling in that nature is so pristine. Many Hindu pilgrims come here to dip into the Ganges River which is believed to be holy water. Here, they wash out their sins. The water here is fresh and clean. The Mansa Devi Temple is here which is spectacular. In a city so old and holy, you can feel a special energy here and follow in the footsteps of many seeking out inner peace and compassion for others.

3. Bodhgaya for Buddhism
In India, you can also take part in a very important Buddhist place. It is the most important Buddhist pilgrimage on earth. This is where Lord Buddha found enlightenment under the Bodhi tree. They know exactly where he found enlightenment and it’s where the Mahabodhi Temple complex is. There are many monasteries in Bodhgaya in the state of Bihar. You can take many meditation and Buddhism courses or retreats. To get here, you can take the Mahaparinirvan Express Buddhist Train.

4. Hanging with Hippies in Goa 

Goa has long been a place where people go to live a simple life. If you find you cling on to material items, you might find this to be a wonderful place to let go of that. Living by the beach in a simple. As it has been a place for soul seekers for decades, there are many different yoga studios and meditation halls. At sunset, the beaches are alive with people drumming, singing, and dancing. There is a wonderful sense of love and community here that is world famous. You can do your yoga teacher training in Goa and spend a month here. Being seaside does something for your soul that will stay with you for a lifetime.

5. Going to an Ashram Anywhere

An ashram is a place of peace where you can meditate. You do devotional work and meditate often. You can opt for silence meditation too. Here are just some of the options:
  • Neem Karoli Baba Ashram. (Uttarakhand) 
  • Sri Aurobindo Ashram. (Pondicherry) 
  • Parmarth Niketan Ashram. (Rishikesh) 
  • Phool Chatti Ashram. (Rishikesh) 
  • Amritapuri Ashram. (Kerala) 
Many of the stays at an ashram are free as they are by donation. While they are simple, if you really want to know more about yourself and the spiritual teachings in India, immersing yourself in an ashram should be on your list.

6. Dharamsala

This is the home of the Dalai Lama and where many Tibetan Buddhists have made their home. There are many beautiful hikes you can take in the mountains. This city sits is under the tall mountain ranges of the Himalayas and you have access into the valleys through. There is the opportunity to do yoga teacher training in Dharamsala or just take daily classes. As it attracts people who are on their own spiritual journeys in life, there are many wonderful yoga and meditation classes. There is also an important Buddhist meditation facility here. You can visit the Dalai Lama’s personal monastery and grounds here which sits perched on top of a mountain peak. Your encounter with the raw and beautiful nature of the mountains here will bring you great peace and fulfillment.

Spirituality in India can be seen everywhere. You don’t have to look far to see people praying. There are also many spiritual festivals you can attend. The old traditions and rituals done on a daily basis will serve as a reminder and an inspiration for your own journey within. These are the top places in India to experience peace and serenity.

Friday, January 18, 2019

Bharat BillPay: Changing the Course of Digital Payments

After the huge success of BHIM-UPI National Payment Corporation of India has come up with yet another revolutionary payment interface - the Bharat BillPay.

Bharat BillPay is a one-stop bill payment ecosystem brought to order by the RBI and NPCI. One can use the internet banking portal, make payments through the website, take help from registered agents, visit their nearest authorized bank or use the Bharat BillPay enabled mobile payment apps such as Amazon Pay, Google Pay, PhonePe etc. all options are available. With Bharat BillPay, NPCI aims to intensify competition among aggregators and bring them all under a national platform.

Categories of billers registered with Bharat BillPay?
  • Electricity.
  • Gas
  • Water
  • Mobile and Landline Post-Paid connection bill
  • DTH
  • Broadband
As of now, the above-mentioned utility bills can be paid using the Bharat BillPay option. That said, categories may be expanded to include other types of repetitive payments like  insurance premium, mutual funds, school fees, EMI"s, municipal taxes etc. Hopefully, more billers will be added in the near future.
Why use Bharat BillPay?
Why Bharat BillPay? If you want an answer to this, imagine a guy living  far away from his parents in a different city. Now, if this guy has to ensure convenience and comfort for his old parents, the least he can do is pay their utility bills without making them stand in endless queues outside bill payment offices. But, how does he plan to do that?

This is where Bharat BillPay comes in! Making it easier to pay and manage all kinds of utility bills through one  stop destination - Bharat BillPay. Using it is very simple and you can manage your and your family's bills in one place without having to switch between different apps. Also, Bharat BillPay is not a separate app or website for bill payment. It is an option available on banking and non-banking apps and websites registered with BillPay.  

To sum up, Bharat BillPay makes it easier for you to:
  • Pay all kinds of utility bills without switching between different apps,
  • You don’t have to download a new app; it’s a payment option which would be available with your current banking or non-banking website and app such as PhonePe, Google Pay etc.
  • You can manage all bills and payment receipts at one place,
How to pay your bills using Bharat BillPay?
  • Choose your preferred payment channel. You can connect to Bharat BillPay banks or non-bank enabled channels such as the ones mentioned above. You can find the list here:
  • Proceeding further, click on Bharat BillPay/ BBPS/ Bill Pay/ Bill Payment Option
  • Choose or select the biller
  • Enter customer details (it can be you or anyone else who entrusted you to pay their bills)
  • Verify the details and click on 'Pay.
Once you do that, you'll instantly get your bill payment receipt. Note: Customers can also use BHIM-UPI app to pay their bills. The same is available for download on Google Play Store and iTune store. Also, using Bharat BillPay digitally is absolutely free. Though users might have to pay convenience charges if they avail the services of Bharat BillPay agents. The control and power to pay via Bharat BillPay enabled digital channels with zero cost is far superior than logging to different biller website/apps.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Best Street Foods to Check While on a Tour to Ahmedabad

You’re bound to achieve the unique taste of Gujarati cuisine once you try the items from five major regions. Although most are salty or contain a kiss of sugar, some of the Gujarati dishes prove to be very spicy.

Kulfi yields a smooth dairy sweetness that’s unique of Ahmedabad. You may refer to it as any traditional ice cream that you come across anywhere in India. Elaichi, Mango, Kesar-Pista, Rose, and Malai are flavours that convey the true essence of Ahmedabad. Matka Kulfi is a popular cooling treatment for those that are visiting this city.

It’s a cake that doesn’t contain any non-veg layer. The bottle gourd stuffing that it has can accommodate other veggies as well. You may even add supplements in the form of crushed peanuts. Look for the Gujarati Cake, and you’ll get the Handvo served in a platter. You may find it at roadside inns or add it while ordering food with online coupon codes.

Khaman Dhokla
Khaman Dhokla is good to bake with gram flour. This steamed item tastes quite spicy and feels fluffy and spongy. This veg snack is good for the health as it goes light on your tummy. It even tastes sugary. You may put some coriander chutney to make it tastier. A vast majority of food stalls in Ahmedabad will provide you with this delicacy.

Apart from Mumbaikers, all other Indians are in love with vada pav, the Indian Burgers. Amdavadis yields a slight variation as you serve the vada with a chilly in between. The mouth-watering delicacy comes with onion toppings, chutneys, and the patty composed of fried potato dipped in gram flour. Almost every street in Ahmedabad will make you crave for its mouth tangling taste.

The state of Gujarat has plenty of seafood on offer due to its extensive coastline. Primarily vegetarian, this state offers a long list of non-vegetarian food items that come from multiple communities. These items comprise of chicken and seafood in different forms. Also, they are cooked to meet the culinary desires of women belonging to such communities.

Ahmedabad has even another Gujju CanapĂ©s to add to its list of glories – Sev Khamani. It’s a traditional preparation of Khaman or Dhokla. Sev Khamani adds more to your delight by recreating that classic taste. You’ll feel a natural inclination towards this piquant, sweetened, and spicy gram lentils canapĂ©. It is a fast-track recipe meant for your morning breakfast. It’s not something that you can overlook after stepping into Ahmedabad.


The Thepla is composed of flour possessing a certain amount of sesame seeds or fenugreek leaves. At times, the processing of wheat flour gets better with bottle gourd. You’ll hear the chuckles when your loved ones have it with pickles and curd.

Surati Locho
Surati Locho is lateral steamed cuisine of Gujarat. It’s composed of Gram flour. You may sprinkle a topping of coriander, Sey lather, or flavoured chutney over its irregular portions.

Batata Poha
Your morning breakfast feels overwhelming when you enjoy a bowl of Batata Poha that’s composed of flattened rice. You may have it in its lemon flavour and add toppings in the form of pomegranate, sev, and onions. Manek Chowk is the favourite hotspot for tourists pursuing this mouth-watering cuisine.

Ragada Pattice
Ragda Pattice is a great fast food that combines Gujarati and Marathi Street food. It is a well-conceived alternative to another popular North Indian cuisine. You’ll find it along the busiest corners of Ahmedabad.


Khandvi is another Gujarati delicacy that fulfills your craving for a spicy snack. Composed of yoghurt and gram flour, it yields every firmly put yellowish bit worth the size of your bite. Handpicked as a starter by most Indians, it’s quite popular across most Indian states. It’s commonly known as Patuli or Suralichi Vadi in the state of Maharashtra.

Jalebi-fafda is a much popular sweet dish that is served during the occasion of Dussehra. It usually accompanies a few pieces of raw Papaya fries called Sambhariyo. Fafda appears flat and is made with besan and tastes namkeen, while Jalebi yields concentric circles rubbed with ghee and tastes sweet. It is a hugely sought-after dessert in Gujarat.

Methina Gota
The most traditional households in Gujarat tend to preserve this furtive treasure. An age-old recipe from Dakor, Methina Gota tastes unique and keeps you mesmerised throughout the Holi celebrations. Get some Khajuri Maliki Chutney and serve the Methi Balls hot and fried.

Dal Wadi
Moong dal is quite easily digestible. It’s both nourishing and delicious to have. You’re bound to catch up a healthy staple option in the sprouts of moong dal. They’re also a rich source of minerals and protein as they gain iron from vitamin C. They test pretty well when served with fried chillies, ring onions, and chutney.


Khakhras are a kind of crackers that are composed of oil, wheat flour or pad beans. You will love having them mostly during the mealtime. The crisp feel comes with the way Khakhras are baked and shaped with human hands. It is one snack that fits in with every occasion. You can have them anytime during the day.

At a time, when various delicacies are being shared across online streaming platforms, you may consider checking these cuisines for a change. Most of these cuisines can win over the hearts of your guests and loved ones alike. You’re bound to earn much admiration by serving these delicacies at the household parties.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Discover the Hidden Gem in Georgia

Exploring new places should be on the bucket list of every person. It is one of the things that bring us solace and knowledge at the same time. We can visit the different parts of the world and learn new things about their culture and life. People often stick to the places that have been visited over and over again. But they should try something new and different to bring a change in themselves. Georgia is one such country that is extremely beautiful but people often neglect it when it comes to tourism. So, here we will speak a little about the country and also about things to do in Georgia.

Why should people visit Georgia? 

Nature: People of the modern age should definitely increase their interaction with nature. Georgia is a place which is close to nature and so people should pay more heed to it.

People: The residents of Georgia are homely and they have a big heart. Whoever you interact with, they will always talk to you with a smile. So, Georgia will give you an insight on hospitality and culture.

Food: One of the main concerns of visiting the country is its food. In Georgia, you will get amazing foods at a cheap rate and the food items are quite unique. On top of that they make really good beer.

Beautiful Cities: Georgia has beautiful cities and town nestled into it. Be it the capital Tbilisi or the modern city of Batumi, you will never have enough. You will fall in love with the streets and the life present in them. 

Things to do in Georgia:

Explore Wine: One of the things that you should do in Georgia is an exploration of wine. It has been found that Georgian’s made wine even 8,000 years ago. So, it is practically the birthplace of wine. The locals ferment the wine in kvevris which are a type of clay vessel. Do not forget to sip on the red wine made from Saperavi grape.

Engage in Supra: As we said, you cannot take food out of Georgia. They have a unique food habit owing to the amalgamation of regions. Supra is the traditional Georgian feast. You will need to try it to get a taste of the people. Khachapuri is great bread filled with gooey cheese and Khinkhali dumplings are amazing as well.

Know the Religion: Georgians are very serious about their religion and they have followed it for a long time. So, to know more about them you should definitely visit the churches. Apart from the perspective of religion, they are great architectural heritage as well. One should include the Svetitskhoveli Cathedral of Mtskheta and the Bagrati Cathedral of Kutaisi in their list. They should also explore the church present in Kazbegi and the other churches that dot the cities and towns.

Go to Ushguli: When you are in Georgia you should definitely visit the highest village present in Europe. It is the Ushguli village that is located 2200m above the sea level. There is no proper road to visit the village, so one needs to travel by a horse. It sits by Mount Shkhara, the highest point of Georgia. The village is present in the Svaneti province which has many other villages nestled into it. You will love the scenic beauty present in Ushguli.

We hope that by now we have been able to convince you to visit Georgia for your next trip. Do not miss out on this beautiful country as it doesn’t cost much to tour it. You will find everything in this country worth remembering when you start your journey to Georgia.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Improving Access to Healthcare

Quality healthcare shouldn’t be a privilege of few but the fundamental right of all. Therefore, PNB Housing supports healthy living for growth and development of the individual, and of the country at large. Through their CSR intervention they aim to reach out to the socially and economically marginalised groups and help improve their access to healthcare through:

1. Providing Infrastructural Support to Government Hospitals
The Indian Constitution guarantees free healthcare to all citizens. Yet, majority of expenditure on healthcare is done out of pocket. This is due to-

  • Limited accessibility to Govt hospitals 
  • Low awareness of health, insurance and other such welfare schemes 
  • Poor or inadequate infrastructure and other healthcare facilities. 

To combat the same, PNB Housing has partnered with All India Institute for Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Delhi and King George’s Medical University (KGMU), Lucknow to improve infrastructure as these hospitals are accessed by people from all walks of life.

The HFC has donated 04 ventilators to the Neurosurgery Sciences Department, AIIMS and extended similar support to KGMU by donating 03 neonatal thermos and 01 transportable incubator to their Department of Pediatrics.

2. Improving Health and Hygiene of Adolescent Girls
India is currently experiencing a demographic dividend as a large portion of the population is under 60 years of age. Within this population, adolescent girls form a particularly vulnerable group as they are in need of awareness and support for their growth and development.

PNB Housing, with their NGO partner- Progress Alternative, have initiated a health and hygiene programme for adolescent girls in four villages of Uttar Pradesh to improve lives of nearly 200 girls through-

  • Reproductive and Child Health Training 
  • Community engagement and awareness generation 
  • Addressing issues of reproductive health, child marriage, family planning etc. 
  • Monthly visits by qualified medical professionals 
  • Provision of subsidized sanitary napkins. 

As conversations around reproductive health are considered a taboo in most areas, the girls are also provided with ‘safe spaces’ to facilitate these discussions. They are engaged in special courses for- sewing, beauticians, computer training, etc. so that they can be introduced to health issues and at the same time are able to learn new skills that they can later use to become independent and earn a living for themselves and their families. Eventually, this will help the country reap the benefits of the demographic dividend and improve the lives of the adolescent girls.

3. Supporting Cancer Patients and their Families- Helpline
The growing number of cancer patients in India is worrisome. A Planning Commission report estimates that about 2.8 million people have cancer at any point of time and half a million die of the disease each year. Lack of awareness and support adds to the distress of cancer patients and their loved ones.

In partnership with NGO - Can Support, the HFC has been supporting the operational cost of the first cancer patients’ helpline in Delhi.

The helpline-011.26711212 is a medium to reach out to those who have been suspected of or diagnosed with cancer, are in a state of shock and denial and in need of emotional support, guidance and medical care.

  • The helpline can be accessed by the patients, families and caregivers of the patients. 
  • The helpline handles over 500 calls a month to provide relevant information and counselling services. 

4. Supporting Cancer Patients and their Families-Pain and Palliative Care Clinic
Over the past 20 years, Can Support has also been working towards extending home based palliative care to patients residing in Delhi and the National Capital Region. Their efforts have helped improve the quality of life of patients and the families’ abilities to cope with the illness and death of their loved ones.

  • In partnership with Can Support, the HFC has started supporting a pain & palliative care Clinic for cancer patients & their families. 
  • The clinic is located in Shahdara, near the Delhi State Cancer Institute and Guru Tegh Bahadur hospitals. 

The aim is to enable more people to access the facilities and lead healthier lives by getting proper, timely treatment and care.

5. Promoting Mental Wellness
Mental wellness is crucial for overall well being of all. Poor mental health can become major risk factors for other diseases as well as injuries. With most developing and under-developed countries having abysmal mental care facilities, coupled with strong, irrational belief about mental health taboos, delivering proper care to needy becomes difficult.

To enable access to and improve delivery of mental health care systems, PNB Housing has supported and refurbished a rehabilitation and crisis intervention center run by the NGO- Sanjivini in Defence Colony, Delhi.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Gripping Facts and Essential Information About Motor Insurance

Basically, motor insurance or vehicle insurance is the insurance which protects the owner from the theft and damage to the vehicle. It is available for two wheelers and four wheelers both. There are some essential facts that one should know about them. Read them below and make yourself updated.
What is all included in this insurance?
It is very important to know what this policy include and what all it covers. The main covers are given in the points below:
  • The damaged which happens due to accident, malicious acts, storms, floods etc to your vehicle.
  • Theft of your new vehicle.
  • The accident cover is also available but only for owner-driver in the motor insurance.
  • What do these motor insurance not cover?
  • The mechanical or electrical breakdowns.
  • Damaged caused by a person in the condition of intoxication.
  • If there is an accident or damaged to the vehicle by a person who is driving without a proper driving license, then no cover is provided to the owners in such a situation
  • If the damaged to the vehicle is caused outside India.

How To Buy Motor Insurance For A New Car?
The first thing to know here is that one does not have to necessarily buy the insurance from the showroom representatives. There are other places available from where one can buy this insurance. The best option at the present time to do it to buy the insurance fro online. This is because one can cut a lot of premium cost from this. Moreover, there are insurances which are available for second-hand cars as well. So, you can secure your pre-owned and second-hand cars as well under the insurance.

What Add-Ons Are Available?
Many people ask for ways to increase their motor insurance. Yes, it is possible to do so. These can be done by add-ons which in turn increase the financial coverage on your vehicle. Two popular add-ons that you can opt for are briefed below:
Engine and Gear Box Protection: In case any loss happens in your engine or gearbox, the add-ons will cover the cost which will be associated with repair and replacement. The engine is one of the most important parts of any vehicle and this is why this cover is highly recommended and preferred.
Zero Depreciation: When a claim of motor insurance is made on vehicles, the zero depreciation is calculated. Then according to the depreciation value, the cost is paid. Usually, the full amount is paid under he zero depreciation add-on. This simply means whatever is the repair cost, it is covered under the motor insurance totally.

Car Insurance Calculators
These calculators are available on the insurer's website and you can access them easily from there to calculate about your own motor insurance. What is no claim bonus, what you can get as an advantage money etc is information which you can get from these calculators? If you have any additions in your insurance claims, all these record keeping is stored in these calculators.
Check out more about Car Insurance by Brajesh Kumar Singh