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All you need is love... and a matchmaker.
All you need is love... and a matchmaker.
Amany Aly Shawky

CAIRO- The khatba has made a comeback in the last few years. A modern and polished version of the modestly dressed middle-aged matchmaker from the movies who visits families with a collection of pictures of prospective brides and grooms, a few Cairo women are looking once again to facilitate marriages and help people find their significant others.

The image of the picture-peddling woman and the worried mother seeking an obedient wife for her celibate son is one that’s familiar to fans of old Egyptian movies. Although more familiar from the glorious 1940s to the mid-1960s, such an image is not far removed from the reality of today. Then, the practice wasn’t as common among wealthier, upper-class families where young women mingled with their gentlemen counterparts in schools, sporting clubs, parties or on hunting trips. The chance of finding a spouse for them was much higher. It was young women from middle class families who were rarely seen outside the house, as school and work were not an option. This reduced their chances of finding a suitor, which called for the emergence of a matchmaker or khatba.

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Society

Taking A Position: A Call To Regulate Yoga In India

Trained practitioners warn that unregulated yoga can be detrimental to people's health. The government in India, where the ancient practice was invented, knows this very well — yet continues to postpone regulation.

Prime Minister Modi at a mass yoga demonstration in Lucknow, India

Banjot Kaur

NEW DELHI — Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the observance of the eighth International Yoga Day from Mysuru, in southwestern India, early on the morning of June 21. Together with his colleagues from the Bharatiya Janata Party, he set out to mark the occasion in various parts of the country — reviving an annual ritual that had to take a break for the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Yoga is one of the five kinds of alternative Indian medicine listed under India’s AYUSH efforts — standing for "Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha and naturopathy, and Homeopathy." Among them, only yoga is yet to be regulated under any Act of Parliament: All other practices are governed by the National Commission for Indian System of Medicine (NCISM), Act 2020.

Yoga and naturopathy are taught at the undergraduate level in 70 medical colleges across 14 Indian states. The Mangalore University in Karnataka first launched this course in 1989; today, these subjects are also taught at the postgraduate level.

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