Capital complex deserves a good quality road
After much delay, the re-carpeting cum repairing of capital road has started in several
stretches. Though the quality is still questionable, the very sight of PWD starting
the repairing work has given lot of happiness to the dwellers of capital complex.
The Itanagar-Banderdewa road is in dilapidated condition. Large portion of national
highway has been severely damaged during the monsoon rain. The inordinate delay in
repairing of road has been extremely frustrating the capital dwellers.
Also it is heartening to see Chief Secretary Ramesh Negi personally inspecting the
ongoing repairing work. Accompanied by Highways engineers, Chief Secretary inspected
the stretch of the highway from G-extension to Barapani Bridge, Naharlagun on Saturday
night. As per the media report Negi stayed back till mid night and monitored the
quality of work. Such kind of dedication exhibited by Chief Secretary is really praise
worthy. PWD engineers should take inspiration from CS and make sure that quality
is not compromised. People of capital complex are closely monitoring the work quality
and if it does not meet the set standard, PWD along with contractor will be answerable.
It is understood that expert from NERIST are carrying out the quality checking.
Hopefully they will be true to their profession and strictly check quality so that
capital complex gets a good quality road.
Need a legislation to rid of baggage of prejudice
The surname of one of my classmates in school was Mal. The meaning of 'mal' in Bengali
is goods but it is used as an offensive slang denoting anything from a gun to wine,
from a queer man to a pretty woman. The boy had to stomach insulting comments for
having such a surname. Students poked fun at his surname even in his presence. Ultimately,
he left our school. The age-old caste system has made such a dent in our society
that a Dalit's surname can become his or her pain in the neck. In fact, such surnames
such as Chamar is used to call somebody names. Goutam Ghosh in his film Paar had
shown this bitter truth. Nasiruddin Shah who portrayed the main Dalit character of
the film groaned inwardly when he had to utter his surname. Most of the Dalits' surnames
act as a dirty stickers in their foreheads. Age-old caste system devalues and demeans
blue collar jobs to such an extent that instead of giving respect to these important
occupations, Indian society still regard them as dirty. Pratichi Trust report on
primary education reveals how some higher caste teachers use sticks to touch their
lower caste students, who are also made to sit separately. Given the prevalent scenario,
one can easily comprehend how painful it is to carry an insulting signboard in the
form of surname.
Another dangerous aspect of surname is that it fans nepotism. Same surname of the
interviewer and the interviewee usually builds bridges over the table. If you hear
that a person is telling another, "Are you Mr. Pal? I'm also Pal.", then you can
be rest assured that they will become pals. Thus, surname can play a very dubious
role in a job interview or in a police station as it fuels caste prejudice and creates
It is, therefore, necessary to impose a general ban on keeping this tale of a name
in our country. It is argued that a single name can cause confusion as it is difficult
to distinguish a person among his or her namesakes. This problem can easily be sorted
out by replacing occupational and caste marker surnames with simple second names.
A person should be given the liberty of choosing anything be it a name of a flower
or his or her father's or mother's name as second name if it is not a baggage of
caste or occupational heritage of horror. This has been done by Nobel laureate
Kailash Satyarthi. He replaced his surname with an unpolluted word 'Satyarthi'.
When Shashank became India's Foreign Secretary in 2003, he was asked why he did not
have a surname. He said that his father Madanmohan was a journalist and a teacher
and he did not believe in surname. He was influenced by the reform movements of the
1910-20 that worked towards achieving social equality. There were many like him at
that time who had dropped their surnames. Shashank's children do not use their surname
either. But they use second name. While his son uses his father's as his second name,
his daughter adopts her husband's name ( not surname). Kailash Satyarthi and the
children of Shashank are ideal examples of how to select a second name discarding
discriminatory tails that water down the right to equality which is enshrined in
the Article 14 of our constitution.
Surnames cause pain not only to Dalits and backward castes but also to women who
are forced to change their surnames to satisfy the patriarchal demands of their husband's
family. Recently, the supreme court of Japan has ruled that a nineteenth century
law forcing married couples to use the same surname- almost always that of the husband's
does not violate the constitution. One of the plaintiffs, Kaori Oguni said before
the ruling, "By losing your surname....you're being made light of, you're not respected.
It's as if part of your self vanishes". She said, "If changing surnames is so easy,
why don't more men do it?"
The UN committee on elimination of discrimination against women has called on Japan
to revise the laws. Being a pillar of patriarchy, surname acts against aspirations
of a modern lady to get on a equal footing with her husband's. Therefore, prohibition
on the use caste-stinking surnames can go a long way in establishing caste as well
as gender equality.
In the midst of such movements against surnames, it is interesting that Ministry
of Corporate Affairs has issued a Circular on March 28, 2014 that an applicant is
required to disclose his or her surname for starting a company. Delhi High Court
upholds the legality of the circular in their June 29, 2015 decision. Nishant who
holds a post graduate diploma in Computer Application has challenged the verdict
in the Supreme Court of India contending that he does not use surname but holds a
valid PAN issued by the Income Tax Department and DIN issued by the Ministry of Corporate
Affairs. Moreover the passport issued to him does not mention his surname either.
Now the Supreme Court of India will examine whether such a pre-condition of disclosing
one's surname violates Article 19 (1) (g) to practice any profession, or to carry
on any occupation, trade or business.
Now, we should all realise and feel the pain of living and walking with an abusive
surname. This edifice of discrimination should be destroyed so that Dalits and women
of our country can breathe easy. We need a legislation to rid of our baggage of prejudice
that has a label 'Pride' ( for upper castes ) or 'Patriarchy' ( for women ) or 'Pariah'
( for Dalits).
Don’t let misguided mob on the streets decide our future
Why people are killing democracy and defaming Arunachal Pradesh?
Democracy and Constitution warrants that the three organs namely Executive, Legislature
& Judiciary should be respected and allowed to function for establishment of the
rule of law in the society.
The constitutionality and legality of actions of the Constitutional Authorities namely
Governor & others are expressly and neatly written down in the provisions of Constitution,
and all more, in case of any dispute, such matters are to be interpreted only by
the Supreme Court and High Court but absolutely not by a few individuals with vested
interest by abusing the title and powers of a Community Based Organisation of a single
tribe and Students Union in a seriously illegal and unconstitutional manner.
Fundamental duties enshrined in the Constitution tell that every citizen shall fully
abide by it and Laws framed there under and in force.
We the people of Arunachal Pradesh representing 26 Major tribes and 110 Minor tribes
don't agree and permit a single tribe based Community Based Organisation and Student
Unions to speak on behalf of the whole people of the state and to illegally and un-constitutionally
interfere with functions of the Constitutional Authorities like demanding recall
of the Governor, demanding explanation from the head of the state, etc in an undemocratic
and anarchic manner.
There is no ongoing election and campaigning in the state which requires the masses
to take to roads in an unlawful and dangerous manner by seriously threatening social
There are the Constitutional Authorities, Judiciary, State Legislature and the Union
Government to address the political problem in the state but not by the misguided
mob on the streets.
The individuals who are misguiding the people to create such huge unlawful activities
and social turmoil in the name of bandh, protest, rally, etc for non - issue deserves
strongest condemnation and non - cooperation from the law abiding citizenry of the
state to preserve Democracy and the Rule of Law.
The misguided individuals abusing the title and power of the single tribe based CBO
and Students Unions and the individuals misguiding the masses to illegal and unconstitutional
activities are seriously harming the name and image of Democracy and Arunachal Pradesh
and it's whole people and they should reform their thoughts and activities because
they are not empowered to kill the Democracy and Demean the name and image of Arunachal
Pradesh in front of the whole world.
All the wise and law abiding people of 26 major tribes and 110 Minor tribes representing
the whole state should strongly condemn these bunch of irresponsible individuals
and follow non - cooperation to these unlawful, unconstitutional and undemocratic
activities to preserve the social harmony and rule of law in the democracy.
Bad Posture and Low back Pain
[ Dr. Amber Anand and Dr. Marpu Kamsi ]
Back pain is a very common complaint. According to various researches, approximately
80% of total population will have low back pain at least once in their lives. Back
pain may be painful and uncomfortable, it is not usually serious. Although back pain
can affect people of any age, it is significantly more common among adults aged between
35 and 55 years. Experts say that back pain is associated with the way our bones,
muscles and ligaments in our backs work together.
Pain in the lower back may be linked to the bony lumbar spine, discs between the
vertebrae, ligaments around the spine and discs, spinal cord and nerves, lower back
muscles, abdomen and pelvic internal organs, and the skin around the lumbar area.
Pain in the upper back may be due to disorders of the aorta, tumors in the chest,
and spine inflammation.
But, there are so many different causes and types of back pain. Some are due to obvious
injuries or disease of the spine. However, by far the most common cause is poor posture,
and the condition is called ‘postural back pain’. The poor posture may result from
slouching, or from a forward curvature of the upper spine which is known as hunchback
or kyphosis. It leads to round shoulders where the head and shoulders are pushed
forward and downwards.
The back pain occurs because poor posture puts unnatural, excessive and prolonged
strain on the muscles, ligaments, discs, and nerves of the spine. The most significant
feature of this pain is that there is no evidence of disease on x-rays or other tests,
and therefore it is often misdiagnosed as imaginary, trivial, psychosomatic or ‘all
in the mind’. It is important to understand the real cause of these pains in order
to treat them appropriately and prevent the development of injury or disease.
The faulty natural tendencies which make postural problems worse is one of the reasons
that spinal, or postural problems become worse with age is because of the natural
tendency to correct it, which is good for maintaining balance, but bad for the body.
For example, if the spine is bent forward because of deformity, the head is projected
forward, and would result in the person falling over if they didn’t do anything about
it. The natural tendency is move the head backwards to put it in a balanced position
directly above the spine, but that movement puts an extreme curve in the neck where
the middle of the neck is bent forward, and the top and base of the neck are pushed
backwards. If the person constantly walks about in that position they will eventually
develop pain and arthritis in the neck. Similarly, if the upper spine is bent forward,
the person will naturally move their belly forward as a counter balance, but that
drags the lower spine forward and can ultimately result in lower back pain.
Risk Factors for Back Pain
A risk factor is something which increases the likelihood of developing a condition
or disease. For example, obesity significantly raises the risk of developing diabetes
type 2. Therefore, obesity is a risk factor for diabetes type 2.
The following factors are linked to a higher risk of developing low back pain: Office
worker suffering with back pain, mentally stressful job, Pregnancy - pregnant women
are much more likely to get back pain, sedentary lifestyle, Age - older adults are
more susceptible than young adults or children, anxiety, depression, gender - back
pain is more common among females than males, obesity/overweight, smoking, strenuous
physical exercise (especially if not done properly), strenuous physical work.
Signs and Symptoms of Back Pain
A symptom is something the patient feels and reports, while a sign is something other
people, such as the doctor detect. For example, pain may be a symptom while a rash
may be a sign.
The main symptom of back pain is, as the name suggests, an ache or pain anywhere
on the back, and sometimes all the way down to the buttocks and legs. In most cases
signs and symptoms clear up on their own within a short period.
If any of the following signs or symptoms accompanies a back pain you should see
Weight loss, Elevated body temperature (fever), Inflammation (swelling) on the back,
Persistent back pain - lying down or resting does not help, Pain down the legs, Pain
reaches below the knees, recent injury, blow or trauma to your back, Urinary incontinence-
when you pee unintentionally (even small amounts), difficulty urinating - passing
urine is hard, Fecal incontinence - you lose your bowel control, numbness around
the genitals, numbness around buttocks.
Causes of Back Pain
The human back is composed of a complex structure of muscles, ligaments, tendons,
disks and bones - the segments of our spine are cushioned with cartilage-like pads.
Problems with any of these components can lead to back pain. In some cases of back
pain, its cause is never found.
· Strain: The most common causes of back pain are: Strained muscles, Strained ligaments,
Lifting something improperly, Lifting something that is too heavy, result of an abrupt
and awkward movement, muscle spasm.
· Structural problems: The following structural problems may also result in back
1. Ruptured disks: Each vertebra in our spine is cushioned by disks. If the disk
ruptures there will be more pressure on a nerve, resulting in back pain.
2. Bulging disks: In much the same way as ruptured disks, a bulging disk can result
in more pressure on a nerve.
3. Sciatica: A sharp and shooting pain that travels through the buttock and down
the back of the leg, caused by a bulging or herniated disk pressing on a nerve.
4. Arthritis: Patients with osteoarthritis commonly experience problems with the
joints in the hips, lower back, knees and hands. In some cases spinal stenosis can
develop - the space around the spinal cord narrows.
5. Abnormal curvature of the spine: If the spine curves in an unusual way the patient
is more likely to experience back pain. An example is scoliosis, when the spine curves
to the side.
6. Osteoporosis: Bones, including the vertebrae of the spine, become brittle and
porous, making compression fractures more likely.
Below are some other causes of back pain:
· Cauda equina syndrome: The cauda equine is a bundle of spinal nerve roots that
arise from the lower end of the spinal cord. People with cauda equine syndrome feel
a dull pain in the lower back and upper buttocks, as well as analgesia (lack of feeling)
in the buttocks, genitalia and thigh. There are sometimes bowel and bladder function
· Cancer of the spine: A tumor located on the spine may press against a nerve, resulting
in back pain.
· Infection of the spine: If the patient has an elevated body temperature (fever)
as well as a tender warm area on the back, it could be caused by an infection of
· Other infections: Pelvic inflammatory disease (females), bladder or kidney infections.
· Sleep disorders: Individuals with sleep disorders are more likely to experience
back pain, compared to others.
· Shingles: An infection that can affect the nerves.
· Bad mattress: If a mattress does not support specific parts of the body and keep
the spine straight, there is a greater risk of developing back pain.
· Everyday activities or poor posture.
Back pain can also be the result of some everyday activity or poor posture. Examples
include: While using a computer: Adopting a very hunched sitting position when using
computers can result in increased back and shoulder problems over time.
Bending awkwardly, pushing something, pulling something, carrying something, lifting
something, standing for long periods, bending down for long periods, twisting, muscle
tension, over-stretching, sitting in a hunched position for long periods (e.g. when
driving), long driving sessions without a break (even when not hunched).
Diagnosing Back Pain
Most orthopedicians and the physiotherapists will be able to diagnose back pain after
carrying out a physical examination, and interviewing the patient. In the majority
of cases imaging scans are not required. If the orthopedicians or the physiotherapists
suspect some injury to the back, tests may be ordered. Also, if they suspects the
back pain might be due to an underlying cause, or if the pain persists for too long,
further tests may be recommended.
Suspected disc, nerve, tendon, and other problems - X-rays or some other imaging
scan, such as a CT (computerized tomography) or MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)
scan may be used to get a better view of the state of the soft tissues in the patient’s
X-rays: can show the alignment of the bones and whether the patient has arthritis
or broken bones. They are not ideal for detecting problems with muscles, the spinal
cord, nerves or disks.
MRI or CT scans: These are good for revealing herniated disks or problems with tissue,
tendons, nerves, ligaments, blood vessels, muscles and bones.
Bone scan: A bone scan may be used for detecting bone tumors or compression fractures
caused by brittle bones (osteoporosis). The patient receives an injection of a tracer
(a radioactive substance) into a vein. The tracer collects in the bones and helps
the doctor detect bone problems with the aid of a special camera.
Electromyography or EMG: The electrical impulses produced by nerves in response to
muscles is measured. This study can confirm nerve compression which may occur with
a herniated disk or spinal stenosis (narrowing of the spinal canal).
The doctor may also order a blood test if infection is suspected.
Treatments for Back Pain:
In the vast majority of cases back pain resolves itself without medical help - just
with careful attention and home treatment. Pain can usually be addressed with OTC
(over-the-counter, no prescription required) painkillers. Resting is helpful, but
should not usually last more than a couple of days - too much rest may actually be
Usually back pain is categorized into two types:
Acute- back pain comes on suddenly and persists for a maximum of three months.
Chronic- the pain gradually develops over a longer period, lasts for over three months,
and causes long-term problems.
A considerable percentage of patients with back pain experience both occasional bouts
of more intense pain as well as more-or-less continuous mild back pain, making it
harder for the doctor to determine whether they have acute or chronic back pain.
If home treatments do not give the desired results, the orthopedic may recommend
Medication: Back pain that does not respond well to OTC painkillers may require a
prescription NSAID (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug). Codeine or hydrocodone
- narcotics - may also be prescribed for short periods; they require close monitoring
by the doctor.
Some tricyclic antidepressants, such as amitriptyline, have been shown to alleviate
the symptoms of back pain, regardless of whether or not the patient has depression.
Cortisone injections: If the above-mentioned therapies are not effective enough,
or if the pain reaches down to the patient’s legs, cortisone may be injected into
the epidural space (space around the spinal cord). Cortisone is an anti-inflammatory
drug; it helps reduce inflammation around the nerve roots. The pain-relief effect
will wear off after less than six weeks.
Surgery: Surgery for back pain is very rare. If a patient has a herniated disk surgery
may be an option, especially if there is persistent pain and nerve compression which
can lead to muscle weakness. Examples of surgical procedures include:
Fusion: Two vertebrae are joined together, with a bone graft inserted between them.
The vertebrae are splinted together with metal plates, screws or cages. There is
a significantly greater risk for arthritis to subsequently develop in the adjoining
Artificial disk: An artificial disk is inserted; it replaces the cushion between
Discectomy (partially removing a disk): A portion of a disk may be removed if it
is irritating or pressing against a nerve.
Laminectomy (partially removing a vertebra): A small section of a vertebra may be
removed if it is pinching the spinal cord or nerves.
A large number of patients opt for complementary therapies, as well as conventional
treatments; some opt just for complementary therapies. It may include: Physiotherapy,
Osteopathy and Chiropractor.
Physiotherapists attempt to manage patients with acute low back pain by utilizing
a wide variety of interventions, including exercise and manual therapy. One of the
exercise approaches that may counter the potentially long-term effects of acute low
back pain is neuromuscular re-education and resistance training. The application
of heat, ice, ultrasound and electrical stimulation, as well as some muscle-release
techniques to the back muscles and soft tissues may help alleviate pain. As the pain
subsides the physical therapist may introduce some flexibility and strength exercises
for the back and abdominal muscles. Techniques on improving posture may also help.
The patient will be encouraged to practice the techniques regularly, even after the
pain has gone, to prevent back pain recurrence.
Muscle Energy Technique: MET is an active technique in that the patient, instead
of the care provider, supplies the corrective force. Greenman defined MET as a ‘‘manual
medicine treatment procedure that involves the voluntary contraction of patient muscle
in a precisely controlled direction, at varying levels of intensity, against a distinctly
executed counterforce applied by the operator.’’ It has been hypothesized that MET
can be used to lengthen and strengthen muscles, to increase fluid mechanics and decrease
local edema, and to mobilize a restricted articulation.
Spinal Manipulation Therapy is a broad term that can include various techniques practiced
by chiropractors, osteopathy and the physiotherapists. What unites each of these
techniques is the use physical force to help promote alignment and ease back pain.
Many people with lower back pain experience muscle spasms that lead to impaired blood
flow. Manual techniques help to offset this process by improving circulation and
increasing oxygen levels in the muscles. Generally, a series of spinal manipulation
therapy treatments is necessary to achieve a sustained improvement in back pain symptoms.
Chronic or ongoing pain usually requires more treatments than back pain that started
suddenly and recently.
TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation): A popular therapy for patients
with chronic (long-term) back pain. The TENS machine delivers small electric pulses
into the body through electrodes that are place on the skin. Experts believe TENS
encourages the body to produce endorphins, and may possibly block pain signals returning
to the brain. Studies on TENS have provided mixed results; some revealed no benefits,
while others indicated that it could be helpful for some patients.
Dry Needling: Dry Needling is a unique treatment option for treating chronic low
back pain. Dry Needling is a procedure in which needles commonly used in accupuncture-
are used to deactivate the myofascial trigger points. These trigger points are discrete,
focal, hyperirritable spots located in a taut band of skeletal muscle. These spots
are painful on compression and they can produce referred pain, referred tenderness
and motor dysfunction.
Exercise: Most of the people suffer from backache because of bad posture and the
weakness of back muscles. So we recommend core strengthening exercises in such cases.
Low-impact aerobic activities are the best; activities that do not strain or jerk
the back. Before starting any exercise program, one should consult the therapist
in the first place. Core-strengthening exercises are the exercises that work the
abdominal and back muscles, help strengthen muscles which protect your back.
Osteopathy & Chiropractic: : An osteopath specializes in treating the skeleton and
muscles. A chiropractor treats joint, muscle and bone problems - the main focus being
the spine. Osteopaths believe that the body is a unified whole and that manipulation
of any of its component will enhance natural process of self-regulation and self-healing.
While the Chiropractors manipulate the spine to treat subluxation which details the
altered position of the vertebra and subsequent functional loss that occurs as as
results of the vertebra being out of position in comparison to other vertebra. Chiropractic
adjustment typically involves the chiropractor applying high velocity, short amplitude
thrust to the vertebra, with the goal of reducing the pressure on the joints and
thus providing pain relief.
Preventing Back Pain
Steps to lower the risk of developing back pain consist mainly of addressing some
of the risk factors.
Exercise: Regular exercise helps build strength as well as keeping your body weight
down. Experts say that low-impact aerobic activities are best; activities that do
not strain or jerk the back. Before starting any exercise program, talk to a health
Core-strengthening exercises; exercises that work the abdominal and back muscles,
help strengthen muscles which protect your back.
Flexibility: Exercises aimed at improving flexibility in your hips and upper legs
may help too.
Smoking: Significantly higher percentage of smokers has back pain incidences compared
to non-smokers of the same age, height and weight.
Body weight: The fatter you are the greater your risk of developing back pain. The
difference in back pain risk between obese and normal-weight individuals is considerable.
Posture when standing: Make sure you have a neutral pelvic position. Stand upright,
head facing forward, back straight, and balance your weight evenly on both feet -
keep your legs straight.
Example of good back posture
When using a computer:
If you regularly use a computer, it is important to ensure you have a chair with
good back support and adopt a good posture and head position.
Posture when sitting - a good seat should have good back support, arm rests and a
swivel base (for working). When sitting try to keep your knees and hips level and
keep your feet flat on the floor - if you can’t, use a footstool. You should ideally
be able to sit upright with support in the small of your back. If you are using a
keyboard, make sure your elbows are at right-angles and that your forearms are horizontal.
Lifting things: The secret for protecting your back when lifting things is to think
“legs not back”. In other words, use your legs to do the lifting, more than your
back. Keep your back as straight as you can, keep your feet apart with one leg slightly
forward so you can maintain balance, bend only at the knees, hold the weight close
to your body, and straighten the legs while changing the position of your back as
little as possible. Bending your back initially is unavoidable, when you bend your
back try not to stoop or squat, tighten your stomach muscles so that your pelvis
is pulled in. Most important, do not straighten your legs before lifting; otherwise
you will be using your back for most of the work.
Do not lift and twist at the same time. If something is particularly heavy, see if
you can lift it with someone else. While you are lifting keep looking straight ahead,
not up nor down, so that the back of your neck is like a continuous straight line
from your spine.
Moving things: Remember that it is better for your back to push things across the
floor, rather than pulling them.
Shoes: Flat shoes place less of a strain on the back.
Driving: It is important to have proper support for your back. Make sure the wing
mirrors are properly positioned so you do not need to twist. The pedals should be
squarely in front of your feet. If you are on a long journey, have plenty of breaks
- get out of the car and walk around.
Your bed: You should have a mattress that keeps you spine straight, while at the
same time supporting the weight of your shoulders and buttocks. Use a pillow, but
not one that forces your neck into a steep angle. (The contributors are Physiotherapist
at Healing Hands Physiotherapy & Rehabilitation center, Itanagar)
(The contributors are Physiotherapist at Healing Hands Physiotherapy & Rehabilitation