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Shah Rukh's detention: US apologises, India talks tough 1,3


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VOL 40. ISSUE 50


Let noble thoughts come to us from every side

First & Foremost Asian Weekly in Europe 21st April to 27th April 2012

Asian companies shine in Britain

Seven Asian-owned companies among fastest growing Seven Asian-owned companies were among Britain’s 100 private companies with the fastestgrowing profits. This was revealed in the latest Sunday Times PwC Profit Track 100, published recently. Second in the list is Auden Mckenzie Group Pharmaceuticals. Amit Patel founded this pharmaceuticals manufacturer in 2001, making only one

drug. Today, Auden McKenzie sells 65 licensed products in Britain, 15 in continental Europe, and one in America. The northwest London firm’s products are used for pain control, epilepsy and cardiovascular problems, and sold to pharmacies and health services, including the NHS. Despite sensitivities in its profits, Patel says the firm’s healthy


India’s Home Minister P. Chidambaram with Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi and Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh (C) during the Chief Minister's Conference on Internal Security in New Delhi. (Report on page 24)

margins are key to funding improvements in products and technology. The company’s profits rose 168% a year, from £820,000 in 2007 to £15.8m in 2010. Twenty fifth in the list is Sun Mark Consumer products distributor, which received Queen’s Award for Enterprise in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Sun Mark was established in 1995 by chairman Rami Ranger and distributes household foods to supermarkets in emerging markets, mainly the Middle East and Africa. It makes and distributes own ranges, and distributes on behalf of clients including Unilever, Heinz, Premier Foods and Johnson & Johnson. The firm attributes its growth to a diversified portfolio, strong cost control, tailoring its approach to each country, and building relationships with local contacts. Profits for the West London company grew 81% a year, from £1.3m in 2008 to £7.5m in 2011. On 33rd in the list is Accrol Papers Paper converter produces more than 1.25m toilet rolls and 500,000 kitchen rolls a day. Founded in 1993, familyrun Accrol Papers makes

Amit Patel

Punjabis celebrate Vaisakhi at 10 Downing Street

English cricketer Monty Panesar with PM Cameron at 10 Downing Street

Rupanjana Dutta

Dr Rami Ranger

and distributes tissue-based products, including napkins, toilet paper and kitchen towels. Its big clients include discount retailers, hygiene-services firms and supermarkets. Accrol attributes its growth to investing in technology that drives down costs, including £6m in 2011 on new machinery, and the growth of discount retailers. Continued on page 26

The British Prime Minister David Cameron threw a gala party at the 10 Downing Street on Monday 16th April to celebrate the annual Punjabi festival Vaisakhi. Around 50-60 guests gathered at the PM’s residence wearing their best attires, each carrying an e-invitation and a photo id. As they approached that famous black door, they were overwhelmed with joy as they posed for photographs in front of that historical building. Inside the building, stairs led up to a huge hall where people gathered as they sipped their favourite drinks and

munched on some delicious canapes. As they approached familiar faces, they hugged, shook hands or nodded to silent ‘sasriyakals’ (greetings/namastes) and exchanged business cards as they networked with others. The two hour event began with a short speech by Cameron, followed by a musical performance by Channi Singh and his daughter, one of the first pioneers of Bhangra in the UK. Last year, while the first time in history Downing Street organised Vaisakhi, it was George Osborne who met the guests on behalf of PM Cameron. Continued on page 2

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Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

ONE TO ONE Keith Vaz MP with Mr Tony Kochhar

Consultant Shoulder, Elbow & Upper Limb Doctor at Shoulder Doctor, London Biography Tony Kochhar ( is a consultant orthopaedic surgeon in central London. He is one of the country's leading shoulder surgeons and also runs the country's centre of excellence for the treatment of repetitive strain injuries ( Originally from Essex, his undergraduate training was at Guys Hospital and he completed his training at the Royal National Orthopaedic hospital in London and in centres of excellence around the world. He was one of the youngest ever Specialist Registrars in the country and one of the youngest Consultant Orthopaedic surgeons. He is married with two sons and currently lives in Kent. 1) What inspired you to begin your career in medicine? A. I was going to do Mathematics at Oxford University but my father told me that if I did medicine he would buy me a snooker table. I have been grateful to my father every day since. It is a privilege to be a surgeon. 2) What is your proudest achievement? A. I have been privileged to learn from the best shoulder surgeons in the world. I spent several months in New York and also spent six months learning from arguably the best shoulder surgeon in the world, Dr Lafosse, in

France. It gives one great satisfaction to deliver excellent care to patients and I strive to improve upon that each and every day. 3) Please tell us about your current position? A. I am a Consultant Orthopaedic surgeon. I specialise in shoulder and upper limb surgery and am the Director of the London Bridge Shoulder Unit at London Bridge Hospital, Central London. I also founded the London RS I clinic, which is the country's centre of excellence for the treatment of repetitive strain injuries. 4) Who has been the biggest influence on your

career to date? A. There are two. The first is Dr Jas Gill a consultant cardiologist at Guys Hospital, who I met Dr Gill when I was a medical student. He inspired me not to give up on my dream of being a leading surgeon in London. At that time everybody around me advised me that it would be impossible to be a leading surgeon in

London and be a turbaned Sikh. The second is Dr Laurent Lafosse. He is arguably the best shoulder surgeon in the world. He took time and dedication to teach me how to be an excellent shoulder surgeon and leader in this field and inspired me to strive only for excellence and to make sure that every patient was

treated to the best of my abilities. 5) What is the best thing about your current role? A. Working in an international hub like central London allows me to treat patients from different backgrounds and from around the world. My practice involves treating a wide spectrum of patients from the elderly with conditions such as shoulder arthritis all the way through to professional sports people. Last week a Saudi industrialist travelled from the Middle East to see me so that I could advise him on his shoulder problems but also to consult on a health and wellness program for all his employees in Saudi Arabia and across the Middle East. I am able to treat patients as I would hope to be treated with best practice and the latest cutting edge techniques. 6) And the worst? A. The worst part of my role is seeing patients who have been treated inappropriately or poorly for several months or years. This saddens me greatly. I set up the London RSI clinic specifically because of the problems patients had encountered previously. They had spent months or years being treated without any improvement in their symptoms and this had led to severe long-term pain which was sometimes career ending. 7) What are your long term goals?

A. The support that I have had throughout my career has been immense and I would not have achieved so much without it. I would like to give something back to the community that has been so supportive, both philanthropically but also by being a mentor to the younger members of our community. 8) If you were Prime Minister, what one thing would you change? A. I am very proud of the National Health Service. The one thing I would like to ensure is that the money spent in the NHS is not wasted and that every member of this country has an equal opportunity of receiving first-class health care. 9) If you were marooned on a desert island, which historical figures would you like to spend your time with and why? A. I would have loved to have met the forefathers of Indian independence such as Bhagat Singh and Mahatma Gandhi. They were true selfless visionaries and we would not be as successful or prosperous as we are today without them. I would also have loved to have hung out with some of the with the Indian cricket team of the 1970s such as Bishan Bedi. Bedi was one of the best ever spin bowlers and as Captain of India he never pulled his punches when his team were not treated fairly.

Punjabis celebrate Vaisakhi at 10 Downing Street Continued from page 1 This time the PM ensured he was around for at least 40 minutes, clapping and dancing to the tunes of some nice Punjabi music, as Kulveer Ranger, Mayor of London’s Director of Environment and Digital London and other guests joined to do a little bit of that traditional ‘bhangra’ steps. The whole room roared with greetings- ‘jo bole so nihal sasriyakal’, just before the Mr Cameron stepped onto the raised platform to give his formal address. He said, “You are all extremely welcome. The theme of Vaisakhi is prayer and it is indeed a time to celebrate with loved ones. “I must share a story from my younger days. I had a friend who ran a sub post office and I was in

Stafford Gurudwara with him. He suddenly came and told me that I have to give a speech in front of people who are visiting the Gurudwara. I did not know what to say. So my friend leaned on to me and whispered into my years some key points about the community. He said when you are making a speech to Punjabis and Sikhs you must remember two very simple things. First Sikhs have won the most number of Victoria crosses than other Asian communities in Britain and the values of the Sikhs are family, enterprise, self reliance and responsibilities. These qualities make the country so great. “Your communities have indeed demonstrated some of the values I believe are essential for building a stronger and

better society: support for the family, a belief in enterprise, a pride in self reliance. The immense contribution to the cultural and economic fabric of this country is clear to see. In every area you have excelled and in doing so have further enriched our society. “I had a look at the business directory this year and it had at least 10,000 Punjabi/Sikh names. It is a huge honour to have Tom Singh from New Look and many such icons in this gathering. It is a privilege to have Monty Panesar amongst us.” “There were some gap in politics, but now we have Paul Uppal and of course Lord Indarjeet Singh, whom I have so many times woken up listening to. He is the first turbuned Sikh in the

House of Lords. I must thank you for the huge contribution to this country. Approximately 700,000 Sikhs in a country of 60mn is a clear sign of an integrated and successful nation.” Present as guests were Rami Ranger, Baroness Warsi, Eric Pickles MP, Lord Singh, Paul Uppal MP, the Singh twins, businessman Tom Singh, hockey player Ashpal Kaur Bhogal with his younger brother and father. The gathering also had many other dignitaries and guests that included names like Cllr Chaz Singh, Deputy Lord Mayor, Plymouth, members of the Army, Royal Air Force and Royal Navy, doctors, authors and media representatives. It was interesting to note that many journalists and community

members who were otherwise seen in every event was missing from this event. One wonders if they were not invited, or they politely declined to come to such a significant gathering. Vaisakhi at Downing Street for some was probably a once in a life time experience, hence there was almost a frenzy to click photograph with PM Cameron or take an autograph from Monty Panesar as the young girls laughed joked about getting hitched with this young cricketer. Statistics from the Office for National Statistics estimate that there are approaching nearly a million people of Punjabi origin in this country. Besides Hindu Punjabis, there are so many Sikhs as well. Like

all major faith groups, Sikhism, a progressive religion was well ahead of its time when it was founded over 500 years ago. The Sikh religion today has a following of over 20 million people worldwide and is ranked as the worlds 5th largest religion. Sikhism preaches a message of Devotion and remembrance of God at all times, truthful living, equality of mankind and denounces superstitions and blind rituals. Sikhism is open to all through the teachings of its 10 Gurus enshrined in the Sikh Holy Book and Living Guru, Sri Guru Granth Sahib. Asian Voice will pay more tribute to this extraordinary community through our British Punjabis magazine due to be published end of April/beginning of May.

Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012


Controversies plague London Olympics London Olympics is immersed in controversies. Lord Coe’s claim that London 2012 would be the greenest ever Olympics is a “corporate spin,” say human rights groups who launched a campaign to highlight the environmental record of three multinational sponsors. BP, Rio Tinto and Dow Chemicals, who have paid tens of millions of pounds to become Olympics sponsors, collectively face allegations of causing environmental degradation, damaging public health and failing to clean up their pollution. The companies, who are providing fuel for the Olympic fleet, metal for medals and an ornate stadium wrap, have been criticized by a coalition of international grassroots organizations as part of their “Greenwash Gold 2012” campaign in London. A group calling themselves the Campaign for a Sustainable Olympics (Camsol) created their own version of the London 2012 site and posted a story claiming Locog had axed the oil company as one of their partners. A collection of dissenting groups, organized by the Counter Olympics Network, will meet in London soon to coordinate their strategies. A coalition of three significant protest groups- London Mining Network, Bhopal Medical Appeal and UK Tar Sands Network- will formally launch a direct campaign against three high profile Olympic sponsors. Meredith Alexander, the former Olympics “ethics tsar” who earlier this year resigned from the Commission for a Sustainable London over sponsorship controversies, will chair activities from the United States, Mongolia, Canada and India. Alongside personal stories about how communities have allegedly been adversely affected by the companies’ activities, awardwinning animators will screen short films about each company to reveal the “green spin.” Medals will be presented to the companies based on the outcome of a public vote for the “worst corporate sponsor.” Alexander said, “The UK promised that London 2012 would be the greenest games ever, but when it

came to picking sponsors, the International Olympic Committee managed to select Dow, which owns the company which was ultimately responsible for Bhopal gas disaster; a major mining polluter in the form of Rio Tinto; and BP who are investing in the dirtiest form of oil. Recycling rubbish and energy efficiency schemes are fantastic, but they can’t make up for a failure to scrutinize sponsors.” Until now, protest activity has mainly confined to Dow Chemicals. But with over 100 days to go until the opening ceremony, protest groups are becoming more proactive, a point underlined by the attack using London 2012 website. The potency of protesters to disrupt the Olympics was brought into stark focus recently by Oldfield, whose decision to swim into the Thames to protest at “elitism” forced the race to be halted. Oldfield has urged public disobedience at the Olympics. It is high time for the organizers act and settle the controversial issues.

Virgin London Marathon The ballot payment system for the 2012 Virgin London Marathon is now closed. But, if you still want to take part, why not try running for a charity? Most charities have a set number of entry places in the Marathon each year, which they allocate to runners on the basis that they will raise an agreed amount of money for the charity. If you'd like to receive helpful fundraising information from charities, please get in touch with them.. If you are taking part in this year's Marathonsend us your photograph at the run and some details on who you are, what you do for a living, where you are from, the charity you supported, how much fund raised etc. Please ensure all these details are written in no more than 200 words and send to

Democracy and Islam can flourish together Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood and other conservative minded Muslim nations should learn from Indonesia on how to respect democracy and on treatment of minorities. This was the advice given by British Prime Minister David Cameron in a speech in Jakarta, capital of the world’s most populous Muslim country. “What Indonesia is showing is that it is possible to develop democracy and a modern economy that neither compromises people’s security nor their ability to practice their religion,” Cameron said. “This has huge implications for others seeking the same fundamental freedoms in places like Egypt, Iran and Syria.” While most of Indonesia’s Muslims are moderate and the country is technically secular, it also faces Islamic militancy and a rising tide of conservatism, which could push regions with large Christian populations to try to break away. India is also a shining example for democracy where different religious group coexist. Cameron also took a swipe at corruption, which still blights Indonesia, and authoritarian rule, from which the country only recently escaped after decades of iron leadership under former President Suharto. Cameron hailed the bravery of Aung San Suu Kyi, the democracy campaigner who was released from house arrest in November 2010 and recently elected to parliament. The Nobel Peace Prize Laureate spent 15

of the last 22 years in custody as a high-profile opponent of Myanmar's military junta, but she was freed as the regime began gradually to hand over power to a quasi-civilian government. At first glance, Cameron’s comments deserve commendation, especially in light of the Arab spring. The success of parties representing the Muslim Brotherhood and puritanical Salafi Islam in Egypt's parliamentary elections, for instance, has produced an alarmist response in some parts of Washington, London and other western capitals. Islamism now haunts discussions of Egypt's future; fears of sharia law being extended, Coptic Christians facing state persecution, and the abrogation of the peace treaty with Israel are frequently cited alongside the suggestion that military rule would be a preferable alternative to democracy in Egypt. In fact, it is now often suggested that enthusiasm for democracy in the Muslim world should be tempered by concerns about "extremism" and threats to security and religious freedom. "In Egypt, it is vitally important to ensure that the democratic success of the Muslim Brotherhood's party strengthens democracy and does not in the end undermine it. "The choice of the Egyptian people must be respected and we must all be ready to work with the government that the Egyptian people elect," he said.

Iran and its nuclear programme The long awaited talks on Iran’s nuclear programme begin this week in Istanbul. The hopes for a breakthrough are dim after warnings from the West that Tehran had to prove its credibility. Following a 15month hiatus, senior diplomats from the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany – known as the P5+1- will gather at the negotiating table with Iranian counterparts in Istanbul. But the build-up has undermined the levels of mistrust and major differences to overcome, with a source close to Tehran’s delegation saying that Western comments ahead of the talks did not “give us much hope.” So far the Iranian delegation finds the Western position, as stated during the G8 meeting and expressed in the media, disappointing and discouraging,” the source said. The foreign ministers from the Group of Eight major industralised nations called on Iran to begin “constructive and serious dialogue” while highlighting Tehran’s “persistent failure to comply with its obligations.” US Secretary of Sate Hillary Clinton also fired a warning shot, saying Istanbul talks were “a chance for Iran to credibly address the concerns of international community.” Reports from Iran indicate that Tehran is unlikely to bow to anything that infringes on its right to peaceful nuclear programme for generating electricity and making isotopes for medical purposed. The main concern of the Western nations to avoid an Israeli strike on Iran’s nuclear installations is also understandable. Jane’s

defence weekly claimed that Israeli military planners’ options are restricted to high risk choices, such as a long range missile bombardment from Israel or a Special Forces raid involving troops attack facilities on the ground. The reports also cast doubts on Israel’s ability to mount a successful operation saying it would face “substantial difficulties.” Senior Israeli officials have warned that the country is prepared to take unilateral action to stop Iran acquiring a nuclear bomb. However, experts believe it would be extremely difficult for any nation to attack Iran’s underground nuclear sites. It is extremely important to avoid such a situation. Since both the countries are fully equipped, such a situation can lead to major configuration. So a negotiated resolution to the nuclear issue is doubly necessary. Meanwhile, Iran is trying to skirt to Western sanctions by luring nations to buy its oil on highly advantageous credit terms. Tehran has been offering a handful of potential customers in Asia, including India, 180 days of free credit, according to officials. They estimate that each month of credit amounts of roughly $ 1.2 to 1.5 a barrel. But Gulf-based officials and European traders said Tehran was struggling to find new customers despite its generous credit terms. Iran’s marketing offer is the latest sign that its oil industry is struggling under the impact of the sanctions. Its move comes before crucial talks between Tehran and Western countries to discuss the Islamic republic’s nuclear programme.


Thought for the Week

Ever tried? Ever failed? No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better - Samuel Beckett (1906-1989)

Political Sketchbook Alpesh Patel’s On Patriotism and Making London a Beacon for Islam

Too often you will hear some fool say ‘one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter’. Or in the case this past week of the Norwegian Anders Breivik that his tears in court were ‘for Norway’. Yet, killing Norwegians was his way of showing his patriotism. A patriot will die for his country, but he’d rather live for it. And see others live for it too. That is how you tell if he is a patriot of not. A terrorist will make little effort to save women and children. That is how you tell whether they are freedom fighters or terrorists. Simple tests reveal the underlying morality. So when Ken Livingstone says he wants London to be a ‘beacon for Islam’ my problem is not that he did not mention Hinduism or Sikhism, my problem is his underlying morality. How do I test it? Is he being a patriot? Or merely thinking he is? There is, as with freedom fighters and genuine patriots, a simple test we can apply. Ken fails. Surely a London which is a beacon for Islam, would be a beacon for all faiths, would be a London where even the most put-upon, generally feared (if opinion polls among non-Muslims are true), generally reviled (if some Muslim commentators are accurate in their beliefs about what nonMuslims think of them), religion is respected and valued and seen in the same light by non-believers as it is by its billion strong global faithful followers? Surely that would be good for a London which has been the home for dozens of

faiths for centuries. Surely if London can be a beacon to Islam, it can be a global centre for all nationalities and raise Britain as a whole. Bunkum. BS Ken. Bunkum because this is not why Ken says it. He says it because he hopes for a block vote. He says it and makes the Christians and Hindus feel, ‘what about us’? He says it and isolates the rest of us because we think ‘what have we done wrong, that we do not get such special treatment? What do we have to do, to merit such attention?’ He says it and makes Islam even more likely to be feared because positive discrimination has that effect. It makes people dislike those that are favoured. So the ones who should object the most to Ken’s statement about making London a beacon for Islam are not the Hindus, Sikhs, Jews, Christians, not Isaac or Ishwar, but Ishmael. Muslims should object. They should be the first to say, ‘no thank you’. We do not want the divisiveness that positive discrimination brings. We do not want the handouts and the envy that you doubtless have in mind and we do not want your charity – ours is a faith built on giving charity not receiving it. We will by our example in everyday life be a beacon for Islam. Or as Gandhiji said of Christians, ‘if they were all like Christ, the world would be Christian’. So too with Islam, let each Muslim be the beacon, not Ken or London. Alpesh B Patel

ASIAN VOICE is published by Asian Business Publications Ltd Karma Yoga House, 12 Hoxton Market, (Off Coronet Street) London N1 6HW. Tel: 020 7749 4080 Fax: 020 7749 4081 Email: www: © Asian Business Publications



Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

LABA and MPs meet local shop keepers in Leicester LABA and Jon Ashworth MP with Shadow Chief Secretary Rachel Reeves MP met local shopkeepers on Evington Road, Leicester and warn that a ‘samosa tax’ might hit Leicester. Leicester South MP Jon Ashworth, Uday K Dholakia Chairman of LABA and Shadow Chief Secretary Rachel Reeves MP visited small retailers on Evington Road to listen to concerns about the local economy and hear what more needs to be done to support the Leicester business community. Jon Ashworth MP said: “I’m delighted to welcome a member of our Shadow Cabinet - Rachel Reeves MP- to Leicester to meet local small business own-

Rachel Revees MP, Jon Ashworth MP and Jaspal Singh Minhas President of LABA

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hank you for the 40 years of support and for such a successful and enjoyable journey. It is our duty to know your requirement as our valuable reader or response to the content in various sections. Please tick appropriately in the box and you need not put your name for confidentiality purposes. May we request you to post your reply by Monday 30th April to Rupanjana Dutta, Associate Editor, Asian Voice at Karma Yoga House, 12 Hoxton Market, London N1 6HW or fax at 020 7749 4081 or email at Your views and opinions can help us to make Asian Voice as a more enjoyable read.

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ers and listen to their concerns and views. “Small businesses are the backbone of the Leicester economy and as the local MP I want to make sure we do all we can to get the local economy moving and attract new jobs to the area. “That’s why I’m particularly worried there is confusion over whether Leicester will be hit by a ‘samosa tax’ following the government’s decision to levy VAT on foods such as pasties sold at above ambient room temperature. “Local retailers who bake and sell samosas need certainty not confusion at this time when the economy is so in the doldrums. “I’ll be writing to HMRC and George Osborne to demand they

clear up this confusion ASAP.” Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Rachel Reeves MP said: “George Osborne’s budget gets worse and worse by the day. Last week families were hit by an average of £511 each. Pasty tax has made him a laughing stock. And there is outrage that all the while he has given a tax cut of over £40,000 to 14,000 millionaires.” “Now we hear that samosa shops in Leicester and elsewhere could be hit with a 20 per cent VAT hike- but the Chancellor’s change is so chaotic and rushed nobody can give them a straight answer. Uncertainty can mean significant damage is done to small businesses like these.”

Anjali launches Pencil Campaign A 15 year old London schoolgirl has begun a campaign to send used pencils to a school in Africa. Anjali Vaz from Stanmore in Middlesex began her initiative when visiting Kenya the country of birth of her mother last year. While there in a Village School near Kisumu, she discovered that children were using charcoal to write on pieces of paper because they didn’t have pencils. The initiative involves sending used pencils to a Village school in Kenya. She is therefore calling on anyone who has used pencils of length 14cm or over which they

are going to get rid of to send them to her so that she can send them on to a school in Kenya. Anjali said: ‘I believe that the young children in this school in Kenya deserve to have the chance for an education and should get the opportunity for learning. Here, we take pencils for granted, however even the pencils that you do not want can help immensely.’ If you have any pencils that you are not using, please email Anjali on

State Bank of India moves to brand new location in Southall


Columns Section One to One Councillor's Column MP's column Leading Lights Spriha's corner CHN Column Children's corner India Connect Fashionista Alpesh's Political Sketchbook Alpesh's Financial Voice Sow & Reap Foreign Exchange Visa Bytes Leadership Matters Mahabharata History Matters Women Achievers Travel Tonic/Travel Diary Lifestyle Matters Kapil's Khichadi

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Rt Hon Virendra Sharma cutting the ribbon in presence of the key bank Executives from SBI and others


Entertainment/Health Category Bollywood Kollywood Art & Culture Women Community Health Sports Coming Events Remarks:

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State Bank of India recently inaugurated its new-look Southall branch located at a new location on 33 High Street, Southall UB1 3HA. The Bank which has served its customers in the Southall area for more than 30 years has recently moved to the new location, reaffirming its commitment to enhance customer service levels in the new premises. Present at the inauguration event, which included ribbon cutting and lighting of the lamp ceremonies, were Mr. Virendra Sharma, Member of Parliament for Ealing & Southall, key Bank Executives, and long

standing customers of the Southall branch. In his inaugural speech Mr Virendra Sharma congratulated the entire SBI Team for their work over the last three decades and for supporting business and community equally. Mr M Mahaptra, the new Regional Head of SBI UK and Mr Rajnish Kumar, current Regional Head of SBI UK also expressed their gratitude to the loyal customers of Southall who have supported the Bank with their patronage ever since its inception. Mr Manoj Kakkar, Branch Manager of the new branch expressed his extreme delight in wel-

coming the guests and shared his management’s commitment in outclassing expectations on customer service. The Bank offers a complete range of products and services in the UK including Instant Access Savings Account, Fixed Deposits, Remittances, Business Banking, NRI Services, Debit Card and Online Banking. The new branch can be reached at 020 8571 3679. State Bank of India (SBI UK) is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority, and is a member of the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Meet London’s first independent Mayoral candidate from Indian lineage Siobhan Benita, who is partly of Indian lineage and a former civil servant is standing as an independent candidate for this year’s Mayoral election on 3rd May. A fiery and a radiant spokesman, she is neither full of statistical jargons nor an extempo champion, she is humane, intelligent and passionate. One of the national newspapers has termed her as the ‘the one to watch’ this year. Benita was born in 1971 in Wimbledon, south west London and grew up in the borough of Merton. Her Anglo-Indian mother came to London as a young girl in 1959. She worked as a home help and auxiliary nurse. Benita’s English father moved to London after graduating from Loughborough University and was a local primary school teacher. Benita was educated in state schools in Merton and she went to Warwick University where she completed a first class Bachelor

Siobhan Benita with her husband, Vincent, and daughters Emilie and Grace

of Arts Degree in English and German and a Masters Degree in Modern German. Benita joined the Civil Service as a graduate “fast in the streamer” Department for Transport in 1996. In 2006, after 10 years as a policy adviser on transport, local government and environment issues, she moved to Cabinet Office where she worked with the then new Cabinet Secretary, Sir Gus O’Donnell, to improve civil service governance, strategy and communications. During her time

in the Cabinet Office she established Civil Service Live, in partnership with CSW publisher Dods. She also founded the Civil Awards and Service “Tabelle”, a network for women who work in, or with, the public sector. In 2009 Benita joined the Department of Health as head of corporate management. She left the department in January 2012 to stand as an independent candidate in the Mayor of London election. She is married with two children.

Former college principle jailed over immigration scam A former college principle who ran a ‘one stop shop’ to help immigrants stay in the UK illegally has been jailed following an investigation by the UKBA. Kaushiklal Gor, 50, owned a company called gateway 2UK between 2003 and July 2009 which was run out of his home address in Sycamore

Avenue in South Ealing. Gor, an Indian national, advertised gateway 2UK as an immigration law advice business, even though his application to become a registered immigration law advisor had been turned down. Gor was later found to have acted on behalf of a number of students from

India, Nepal and Sri Lanka, many of whom applied for visas indicating that they had been offered courses at the gateway 2UK educational college, which Gor also ran. He assisted them with visa application forms, appeals, and on a small number of occasions even represented them at


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Asian policeman wins hefty compensation after being framed by ‘racist’ colleagues Former Cleveland Police officer Sultan Alam, pictured outside Leeds County Court, said his career was destroyed after he was wrongly sacked, and wrongly convicted in a car-ringing trial then given an 18month jail term in the 1990s. Sultan Alam, 49, said his reputation had now been restored following an 18-year fight for justice that wrecked his career, two marriages and his health. The traffic officer’s ordeal began when he lodged an employment tribunal claim, accusing Cleveland police force of racism. In November 1994, just months before his claim was due to be heard, he was arrested by the brother-in-law of one of the senior officers he had complained about. He was then charged with handling stolen goods by colleagues who ‘stitched him up’ because of his race claim. appeal hearings. At the same time Gor also worked as a contract manager for the adecco employment agency, supplying staff to work in bakeries in Greenford and Southall, west London. He would use students supposedly in the UK to study at his college to provide labour at the bakeries, routinely making

His trial for ‘car ringing’ in 1996 ended with his conviction and an 18-month jail sentence, half of which he served behind bars. Once free, he found work as a taxi driver and began the long battle to clear his name. In 2007 he was exonerated when the Court of Appeal quashed his conviction. It found that serving police officers deliberately suppressed evidence that could have cleared his name. The men Mr Alam, accused of framing him were taken to court in 2004 following an investigation by a neighbouring police them work well in excess of the 20 hours a week permitted by law. Those who questioned this or refused to work the hours Gor asked were sometimes warned they would face the sack. Gor was arrested by our West London Criminal and Financial Investigation team at his home address on 22

force. Although four officers were charged with offences including conspiracy to pervert the course of justice, the case collapsed and they were acquitted. Mr Alam pursued a civil case against the Cleveland force, and its chief constable was forced to admit to malicious prosecution and misfeasance in public office. At Leeds County Court on Monday, Judge Andrew Keyser QC announced the award of £841,000 in compensation, which was a combination of damages and compensation for future earnings. Mr Alam said he had faced what seemed like ‘insurmountable odds’ in his battle to clear his name and seek justice. Mr Alam, a policeman’s son who came to England from Pakistan when he was eight, said he did not believe Cleveland Police had changed culturally. March 2010. He was later charged and on 14 March 2012 he pleaded guilty to assisting in breaches of immigration law and illegally providing immigration advice following a hearing at Isleworth crown court. On Thursday 12 April a judge at the same court sentenced him to 16 months in prison.

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Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012



By Spriha Srivastava

Vishu celebrations in the UK

UK-based Malyalee & Tamil community celebrated Vishu on April 14. Vishu is a Hindu festival celebrated in the Indian state of Kerala and in the Mangalore and Udupi districts of Karnataka. It marks the New Year in accordance with the Malayalam calendar, known as the Kolla Varsha. In UK, Vishu was celebrated by Harrogate Malyalees Association at St. Aelreds Parish Hall. Apart from this, the East Midland Hindu Samajam organized Vishu celebrations in Nottingham. The event was held at the Derby Hindu Temple in Derby. “The traditional Vishu kani will be the highlight of the event which will be prepared with all the right materials. There will also be opportunity for Vishu kaineetam from 10am. There will also be other cultural and traditional arts programmes along with a Vishu sadhya,” the invitation read. The most important event in Vishu is the Vishukkani, which literally means “the first thing seen on the day of Vishu after waking up”. The Vishukkani consists of a ritual arrangement of auspicious articles like raw rice, fresh lemon, golden cucumber, betel leaves, areca nut, metal mirror, yellow flowers, and a holy text and coins, in a bell metal vessel called uruli in the puja room of the house. A lighted bell metal lamp called nilavilakku is also placed alongside. This is arranged the night before. On Vishu, the custom is to wake up at dawn and go to the puja room with eyes closed so that the Vishukkani is the first sight of the new season.

Celebrations also took place in Cambridge, organized by the Cambridge Hindu Samajam on April 14 and went on for the entire day. In Kent, the Kent Hindu Samajam celebrated Vishu in Gillingham Kent on Saturday April 14. The sadhya (food) was prepared by the men when women and children were enjoying their time by sharing the fun time in another house, local reports said. Once the sadhya was ready the women and kids joined the men and had the meals together. This was followed by sharing of several stories of traditional importance to the occasion. The festival was also celebrated in Birmingham, where the Jayan Club of Birmingham (JCB) will hold a joint Easter and Vishu celebrations on April 21 at the Birmingham Sheldon Hall with various cultural programmes. “Vishu” is celebrated with much fanfare and vigour in all parts of Kerala. Setting off fire crackers is part of the celebration, especially for children. People wear new clothes for the occasion and elders of the family gift money,

by Kapil Dudakia - email: called Vishukkaineetam, to youngsters. Vishu is also a day of feasting. The foods consist of equal proportions of salty, sweet, sour and bitter items.

Sony TV to launch new show

Sony Entertainment Television Asia has launched a new entertainment show called “Snapshot.” The company hosted a launch party last week at the Sony Pictures Europe House in the West end to make the announcement. The first episode of the show aired on Friday, 13th April. ‘Snapshot’ will contain six individual segments. A unique feature which will be included is ‘Your Call’. This will feature the presenter personally calling selected Sony TV viewers, providing a closer link between the viewers and shows. The second segment, ‘Celeb Shots’ will bring you interviews with UK Asian artists, actors and Bollywood stars. This weekly segment will be packed with gossip straight from the celebrities themselves. “Snapshots Hit for 6 will countdown the top 6 latest tracks from the Bollywood, Bhangra and pop music scenes. ‘Soap Box’ will showcase all the latest from dramas that are aired on the channel. ‘Trends’ will explore the life of fashion and take viewers through the hottest fashion trends along with useful and easy beauty tips. ‘Buzz’ will inform viewers of the latest showbiz news and gossip. The show is being produced by Picturegate Production’s Gunjan Hazarika and will air on Sony TV every Friday at 19:00.

Panjab Radio launches iphone App

On the day of Vaisakhi, Panjab Radio launched its own App for all apple products including iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and so on. This can be downloaded free of charge and will allow listeners to listen to Panjab Radio anywhere in the world. Panjab Radio is the first radio station to set up in the UK to exclusively appeal to the Panjabi community bringing to them a wide range of programmes, topics, music, news, views and religious sermons and in doing so has established a loyal and growing listenership and membership base. 12 years on, it continues to strive in bringing its listeners the very best in programming. Supported by its listeners, members, private organisations and the business community who advertise, Panjab radio reaches not only in Greater London, but West Midlands, West Yorkshire and North East of England via DAB, it also covers whole of Europe via satellite appealing to National advertisers who wish to reach the Panjabi audiences.

Let us know what you think. Email Spriha at

The Fight for London II Last month I wrote about the upcoming London Mayoral elections. In particular I wanted to test the two leading candidates in relation to how they would respond to issues that emerge from our community. Well folks the results are in and I can say that whilst I have had a response from Boris’s team, regrettably it seems Ken has been too busy filling in his tax returns to bother responding. So the first points go to Team Boris who at least had the common sense to understand and appreciate that a Mayor has to consider all communities that make up London, and not only those who may grant their undivided loyalty and tribal votes. I checked the odds at the bookies (not that I am a betting man!), and they show that Boris is odds on to win the Mayoral election, though Ken has been catching up over the past few months. The latest polls put Labour well ahead of the Tory Party, however in contrast Londoners, it seems, favour Boris over Ken. When it came to responding to the questions I had posed, the response was poor. In Ken’s case he just did not bother. Whilst on the surface it might seem that Team Boris had made an attempt, in my view it was insufficient and not in keeping with expectations. After the disastrous by-election in Bradford East, it seems Labour have gone into overdrive to try and get Ken elected at any cost. However, there are many in the Labour Party who just don’t seem to have any time for Ken, his politics or his style of leadership. Ken has made every attempt to secure the Muslim vote. No doubt he feels it is more likely that the Muslim community will vote en-mass and broadly in line with the direction given by the local Mullahs on a Friday. It will be interesting to see if the George Galloway style of ‘vote harvesting’ works for Ken as well. Boris on the other hand relies much on his media charisma to reach the voters directly. Though the Tories are doing badly nationally, Boris it seems has singlehandedly kept the Tory torch burning in London with a poll lead over Ken. He has also published his tax returns which show he pays a higher proportion of his earnings in tax compared with some of his rivals. Though I have to say I am not sure if this truly reflects the full house-

Curry spice lowers heart attack chances? The curry spice turmeric may help ward off heart attacks in people who have had recent bypass surgery, according to a study. Curcimins - the yellow pigment in turmeric -known for having antioxidant and antiinflammatory properties. Patients given an extract from turmeric had a 65% lower risk of heart attack than those given a placebo in a study. The new findings suggest that curcumins may ease those risks when added to traditional drug treatment. The results need to be confirmed in further research, said Wanwarang Wongcharoen from Chiang Mai University in Thailand. Turmeric extracts have long been used in traditional Chinese and Indian medicine.

hold income and family estate. Ken published his data but created huge controversy with the way in which his earnings were routed via a company structure. Accountants amongst you are better gifted to know if this matters or not – but the perception Ken has left with many voters has been negative. Interestingly Ken has promised to cut fares by Oct 7th or he will resign. However, why is it that he cannot then give a guarantee that he will ensure there is a culturally sensitive crematorium for our community by a given date, and if he fails he will resign? Though to be fair Boris has not given any such undertaking either. I suppose there is still time! For Londoners the question remains, ‘who do you trust most’ to do something not just for Londoners, but also for our communities as well? UKIP poll ratings are rising and are comparable now to LibDems in London. It is likely that most of them will have Boris as their 2nd favourite, but who will the LibDems have as their 2nd favourite? The candidates no doubt will suddenly turn up at your local places of worship. One wonders if they come praying for votes, or playing the game to hood wink communities into giving their votes? Our leaders have to be savvy and should ask why they have not responded to the issues raised by the community? As a community we should not allow our hospitality to be abused every time there is an election. The jury is out in terms of whether it will be Boris or Ken, though on paper Boris does have an edge at present. It is time that these two candidates make promises to us that they will keep – do they have confidence in their own rhetoric, or are they the custodians of platitudes of nil worth? Think long and hard before you cast your vote. Make sure you get everyone you know to go out and vote – for only in large numbers can we ever show political entities, that our community deserves proper attention as well. Don’t let yourself down, and don’t be hood winked by those who speak with ‘fork tongue’. On May 3rd will Ken’s tactics of a ‘love in’ with the Muslim community work, or do people feel that Boris deserves another four years to prove himself?











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Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012


India and UK agree to push Trade and Investment Shri Anand Sharma, Commerce, Industry and Textiles Minister who is in London for the 8th round of India-UK Joint Economic and Trade Committee (JETCO) Meeting, held official meetings with his British counterpart Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, Dr. Vince Cable and the Chancellor of the Exchequer Mr. George Osborne in addition to leading the Indian deliberations at the JETCO. During the bilateral meetings with Dr. Vince Cable and George Osborne Shri Anand Sharma highlighted the scope for greater cooperation between the two countries in trade and investment, particularly in critical areas like infrastructure, healthcare, skills development, advanced manufacturing and innovative technologies. Shri Sharma referred to the need for improving the regulatory environment for investments. He pointed out that Indian companies who want to acquire companies in the UK have been facing considerable delay and long legal hassles. He highlighted the concerns of Indian companies who want to visit UK for business meetings and also the long delay in obtaining Visa by Indian nationals. Shri Sharma also flagged the issue of the restrictions imposed on

non-EU immigration into the UK which is adversely affecting the operations of Indian companies in the UK. He specifically referred to the UK Border Agency treating Intra Company Transfers of IT experts, professionals and highly skilled workers as prospective immigrants which has affected has badly affected the performance of Indian companies operating in the UK. He also expressed concern that this move may force Indian companies, especially IT companies to relocate to other European capitals. Shri Sharma appreciated the UK Government’s intention to reduce net immigration “to tens of thousands” and clarified that Indian experts coming to the UK leave the country after completion of their contractual obligations with their employers in the UK and therefore they cannot be treated as economic migrants. He highlighted the vast contributions of Indian professionals to the UK economy. He also informed the Chancellor that stoppage of Post Study Work Permits to students has not found favourable to Indian students who are not able to recover the cost of their education in the UK universities and therefore they are now looking for options to study in other countries. He stressed that this development is expect-

Shri Anand Sharma

Dr Vince Cable

George Osborne

ed to impact the UK universities where at present over 40,000 Indians students have been studying. Dr. Vince Cable emphasised the British Government’s desire to further strengthen the ties with India. He highlighted the importance of economic collaboration by protecting and creating jobs through trade and investment for economic recovery. He referred to the Global Investment Conference which the British Government is organising at Lancaster House one day before the London Olympics started, as an initiative to drive the world economy out of the crisis. Mr. George Osborne told Shri Sharma that for the British Government led by the Conservative party, enhancement of relations with India has been a top priority. He added that this was reiterated by Prime Minister David Cameron on several occasions

including last month in New Delhi during his televised address at the India Today Conclave and the launch of ‘Great Britain’ campaign in India. He also referred to his fruitful meeting with Shri Pranab Mukherjee, Finance Minister, in New Delhi during the UK-India Economic and Financial Dialogue in the beginning of this month where several issues of mutual interest were discussed. In his address at the JETCO plenary session of

over 150 businessmen from both countries at the Royal Society here, Shri Anand Sharma congratulated the Joint Working Groups in identifying concrete projects and tangible results which are critically important for India’s development and inclusive growth. He urged them to focus on implementation of the identified deliverables, building upon the decisions taken during the New Delhi meeting. He expressed satisfaction that trade and investment between the two

British Peer suspended A British Labour peer of Pakistani origin, Lord Nazir Ahmed, pictured, was suspended by the party on Sunday night for offering a 10 million “bounty” for the capture of United States president Barack Obama while visiting Pakistan. The party also announced an inquiry into the peer’s alleged offer. While Lord Ahmed, pictured, denied that he had announced a “bounty”, he said all that he had called for was the prosecution of former British PM Tony Blair and former US president George W Bush for war crimes. The Labour party suspended Ahmed on the basis of a report in the Pakistani daily , Express Tribune, which said he made the remarks at a reception in Haripur, Pakistan , on Friday last. He was speaking in response to the cash award announced by the

US earlier this month for nabbing Lashkar-e-Taiba chief Hafiz Saeed, whom the Indian government describes as the mastermind of Mumbai attacks in November 2008. A Labour spokesperson said, “We have suspended Lord Ahmed pending investigation . If these comments are accurate, we utterly condemn these remarks, which are totally unacceptable. The international community is rightly doing all in its power to seek justice for the victims of the Mumbai bombings.” Ahmed said, “I never said those words. I did not offer a bounty. I said that there have been war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan and those people who have strong allegations against them George W Bush and Tony Blair - have been involved in illegal wars and should be brought to justice . I do not think there’s anything

wrong with that.” The peer was shocked to hear the allegations and challenged the party to provide evidence. He said party officials should have spoken to him before announcing the move. Respect MP George Galloway said Labour’s decision to suspend Lord Ahmed was ‘suicide’. He suggested the peer should defect to his party. Party leader Ed Miliband said: ‘We need to know if his comments were accurate and that’s what we’re investigating.’

countries have been growing despite the global economic crisis and serious sovereign debt crisis in the Eurozone. He underlined that India is committed to continue to grow in the trajectory of robust growth for the next 25-30 years. He reiterated that the Government of India is committed to create investor friendly environment in the country through the FDI route, implementation of the new National Manufacturing Policy and creation of enabling financial framework for investment outward investment by Indian companies abroad and for foreign companies in India. Shri Sharma invited the British companies to investment in the infrastructure development projects in various parts of India including the DelhiMumbai Industrial Corridor and BangaloreChennair corridor.

Domiciliary Home Care Workers Plan Care is a leading provider for home care services in London Borough of Brent .We provide care to elderly and vulnerable adults who require care in their own homes, so that they may continue to live independently in their homes and participate in community life. We require people who are caring and have a compassionate nature to help elderly and vulnerable people in the community. It is essential that you have a good understanding of Respect and Dignity with a high level of customer service and communication skills. We are currently looking for applicants who are looking for full time positions including working at least 2 weekends in one month. If you are a student you would be required to work every weekend. Applications are particularly welcome from Arabic, Gujarati, Hindi, Punjabi, Urdu, Russian and Somali backgrounds as they are currently under represented in our workforce. We are equal opportunities Employer. Due to the nature of the role it is essential that applicants live in London Borough of Brent. In return we offer competitive hourly rates, induction training, holiday pay, on-going support, yearly appraisals, regular supervisions, a wide variety of training & job satisfaction. If you would like to discuss this further,

please call 0207 821 1944 between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday to arrange your registration.

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Dee Katwa

Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Midland Voice Contact: Dhiren on 07970 911 386 or

Gay hate row mosque to open boys school A Birmingham mosque where clerics were secretly filmed allegedly preaching hate against homosexuals and non-Muslims is opening a fee-paying school. Students at the £3,500-ayear Green Lane Masjid Independent Boys School will be expected to memorise the Quran and wear traditional Pakistani uniforms when it opens this September. Arabic will be the “key language” taught to its annual intake of 20 students, aged 11-16, who will also be following the national GCSE curriculum in traditional subjects, like the sciences

and geography. The recently refurbished £1.5 million two-storey school building adjoins the main mosque, pictured, in Small Heath and boasts six classrooms, a state-of-the-art science laboratory and new gym. Small Heath, an inner-city area of Birmingham, has a population of around 40,000, the majority make-up of which is people mainly of Pakistani and

Peak mission raises £3.5k Two intrepid volunteers who climbed Africa’s highest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro, to help raise much needed funds for Birmingham Children’s Hospital are seeking support from readers to help them reach their £4,500 fundraising target. Architect Sanjay Chouhan from Birmingham and Chetan Parmar, a painter and decorator from Northampton, pictured, were accompanied by their cousins Anuj and Deepa from Nairobi and Bhavesh from Arusha, Tanzania, along with 21 porters, two guides, a chef and a team manager. They went the Machame “Whiskey” way, a route which has a total hiking distance of 100km and is one of the most grueling and challenging. Their selffunded mission last month, which was successfully completed within six days, has so far helped raise £3,541 - as of Monday this week. To donate, or for updates, visit

One year on, still no funeral The body of a Birmingham dad who died in mysterious circumstances after being detained by police has still not been released for his funeral – a year after his death. Kingsley Burrell, 29, died in hospital last March after being sectioned under the Mental Health Act, despite his family insisting he had no history of psychiatric illness. What, or who killed Kingsley, pictured, remains a mystery. It could take another six months before Kingsley’s body is laid to rest, according to his angry relatives.

Thai New Year Shoppers at Birmingham’s Bull Ring shopping complex were blessed with holy water – said to wash away bad luck - by a group of monks last Thursday as part of Songkran, the Thai New Year. Water plays a large part in the ceremony as new year falls on the hottest days of the year in Thailand. A huge celebration also took place at Wat Santiwongsaram in Handsworth last Sunday.

Sick officers, targets failed Cops at Staffordshire Police lost more than 20,000 days due to sickness, according to new figures, thus failed to hit its sickness day targets. The average officer at the force took more than 9.5 days off due to illness in 2011/12 - an increase from 8.5 days the previous year. The county’s 209 police community support officers took an average of almost 11 days off sick - up from 9.8 days.

Bangladeshi origin. The area is also home to Birmingham City Football Club’s St Andrew’s Stadium. Green Lane Masjid sparked controversy in 2008 when a Channel Four TV documentary, titled Undercover Mosque, showed secret footage of Islamic scholars allegedly peddling hate against homosexuals and non-Muslims. It led West Midlands Police reporting the broadcaster to the regulator Ofcom for misrepresenting the preachers, but the complaint was

rejected and the force later made an apology. Andy Wasley, from Stonewall, the UK-based gay rights group, said the Equality Act 2010 places a clear duty on fee-paying schools to make sure every young person receives an equal service, regardless of their sexual orientation. He said: 'We’re crystal clear that Green Lane Masjid’s school must make sure all its young men can look forward to a good education, including those who are gay or perceived to be gay. Mosque spokesman Ifaan Raza said the new school intended to “have a secular side as well as an Islamic side”. Separately, also opening in Birmingham this September is the Nishkam High School, the first Sikh-ethos, multi-faith school for 11-18 year-olds in the Midlands.

Tensions at Temple It was reported in this column last week that a committee member at a Hindu temple in Birmingham was injured following a commotion. Since, a string of fresh allegations and revelations have emerged, following a three-hour meeting last Sunday with members of the temple management committee, which are now being investigated. As a result we are unable to feature the story in full, as stated in this last column. But we shall keep readers updated on developments over the coming weeks. Separately, a nine-day religious festival, a Ram Katha, is still likely to go ahead in Birmingham next month as planned. However, the venue and organising committee have changed. The festival will be led by Hindu preacher Ramnikbhai Dave of Lisbon, Portugal.

Region is starved of water The Midlands is officially in drought. The announcement, made on Monday this week by the Environment Agency, comes after it established that 2011 was the driest year in the region for over 90 years. In February, March just over 40% average rainfall – below expected – was recorded. The lack of rain has led to low groundwater levels and exceptionally low river levels. The EA is appealing to everyone to use water wisely. To find out more visit

50 years service at court

News in Brief Hanuman Chalisa recital A 108 times recital of the Hanuman Chalisa, a 40verse poem dedicated to Lord Hanuman, the Hindu monkey God, took place at Shree Krishna Temple in Sparkbrook, Birmingham last Saturday. The all-day programme was led by six couples, all from the Surti family.

Charity Fun Run A 10km fun run has been organised by the Birmingham branch of BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Temple. The annual fundraising event, in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support and Birmingham Children’s Hospital, will take place this Sunday (Apr 22) from 9am onwards at Malvern and Brueton Park, Solihull (B91 3EN). For more information visit

Vaisakhi in Brum Scores of people of all nationalities will descend on Birmingham’s Handsworth Park this Sunday (Apr 22) to celebrate Vaisakhi. The annual event, organised by The Council of Sikh Gurudwaras, will take place from 12pm onwards. It will feature a street procession, live music and dance, food, a variety of stalls, speeches and much more. Dr Pyara Singh Bhogal, Chairman of CSGB, said: “It’s going to be a great event, as always. Join us, let us celebrate together.”

Council’s £78k legal bill Solihull Borough Council spent £78,000 in legal fees battling a group of gypsies who set up a camp on greenbelt land, it has emerged. The local authority spent £35,000 securing an injunction through the High Court against the travellers who moved into Eaves Green Lane, Meriden, last month; and £43,000 on a planning enquiry, a planning appeal and other legal matters.

Missing teenager Officers in Birmingham are searching for a missing teenager, Frieda Begum. Frieda, 19, was last seen on Temple Row in the city centre on April 12 at 11.30am. Distressed mum Rafiya Begum, 35, from Stechford, said it was “totally out of character” for Frieda, pictured, not to come back home and has made an emotional plea for her safe return. Anyone with information can call police on 101.

Cafe closed The ex-boss of Bus Stop Cafe in Stratford Road, Sparkbrook, Birmingham has been banned from managing food businesses after failing to stop a mouse infestation. Father-of-four Osman Abaade pleaded guilty to four counts of flouting food hygiene regulations. Abaade, 32, was also fined £400 and ordered to pay £600 costs and a £15 victim surcharge.

BCABA Awards

The longest-serving court clerk in the country has retired. Bob Taylor, 68, worked at Birmingham’s Victoria Law Courts. Railway enthusiast Mr Taylor, the son of a policeman, who spent 50 years in the service said: “In those days you didn’t need to be qualified or anything.” Mr Taylor, who has a son and a daughter, lives in Streetly and plans to now relax and enjoy some holidays with his wife.

The Black Country Asian Business Association (BCABA) Awards will take place at Wolverhampton Racecourse on July 6, it has been announced. The awards, now in their 11th year, celebrate the achievements of existing and emerging local British Asians across various specialist sectors. BCABA’s Chair, Ninder Johal, said: ‘Asian businesses are still thriving despite the economic uncertainty’. For more information visit

8-week wait to register a birth

Priest reaches milestone

Parents of babies recently born in Birmingham must wait more than two months to register a birth. This is because of an increase in infants being born in Birmingham hospitals this year. Also because of the closure of maternity services in Solihull and Sandwell. The total now stands at 23,000, up from about 15,000 a few years ago.

Kamalbhai Dave, Hindu priest at Shri Ram Mandir in Sparkbrook, Birmingham, has celebrated his 50th birthday. He was joined by family and worshippers at his cake-cutting ceremony. His wife Sangita described him “a perfect gentleman”. Mr Dave is moving to pastures new in the next few weeks.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

A chance to unveil yourself British-Asian community consists of people from different castes, religions and states of India. Regarding this, European scholars have been doing research since long, they have been studying mainly the social issues of British, German and French colonies. Few scholars from London based School of Oriental and African Studies, are still engrossed in such kind of research. This matter has also been studied by Prof. Mario Ratan of Amsterdam (Holland) university’s since many years. His centre for study has been more of central Gujarat and Boriavi. He has also prepared articles, books, and documentaries regarding it. For such kind of study, an Italian lady scholar Dr. Ellis Tilche is specially going to Gujarat next month and she will be staying back for a year in order to carry out such research. She will be doing a detailed study of people of town Sundarna near Dharmaj, and she will also study the people of this town who have migrated to Britain. Her

main focus will be to explore the main features of their lifestyle. SOAS’s Dr Edward Simpson is co-ordinating this project. Over the years several British scholar have been studying the societies of Patels, Lohanas, Boharas, Oshwals, Ismailis, Khojas here in the UK and their ancestral places in India. The largest such residing group in Britain are Patels, and I am one of the Patels. I have also read and done lot of discussion and thoughtprocess regarding such studies mainly regarding the study initiated by scholars like Prof. David Pockok, F.G Bailey, Edrian C.Mayer and many more. Now, when Asian Voice/Gujarat Samachar are celebrating their 40th anniversary, it is our duty and responsibility, to initiate some serious deliberation within our communities with cooperation of the scholars engaged in detailed study about our past and present in our ancestral homes and compare with our lifestyle in this coun-

try. This project surely will help us to know who we are, what we are engaged in and how can we pass on our heritage with suitable interaction in our new homeland ie UK. This project will need cooperation and help from the likeminded fraternity from our community. Those men/women, young and old who have interest in such a project with commensurate knowledge and skills are invited to participate in this project. We will work amongst ourselves as well as the academicians and scholars. Anyone who is interested either full time or part time is invited to write to CB Patel at the earliest with details of background and experience. Suitable candidates will be selected and will receive a remuneration commensurate with their skills. Please email your CVs to or fax at 020 7749 4081 or post it to Asian Voice address. CB Patel Publisher/editor

Shoe-bomb plotter sentence cut Saajid Badat, jailed in 2005 for trying to blow up plane, agreed to give evidence in US trial in return for two years off 13-year term. It is the first time a terrorist convicted in the UK has entered into an agreement with the Crown Prosecution Service to give evidence in a trial against other alleged terrorists. Sue Hemming, head of the CPS special crime and counter-terrorism division, said the agreement had not been entered into lightly. It will see Badat give evidence in the US trial of

Adis Medunjanin over an alleged al-Qaida martyrdom plot from 2008 to 2010, which opens in New York on Monday. Badat, a bright, welleducated man from a deeply religious family and an active member of his community, he was like the model citizen. Born in Gloucester to a strict Muslim family who moved to England from Malawi, Badat had hopes of becoming an Islamic priest. His father Mohammed was retired from the Wall’s ice-cream

A Home Office-licensed immigration adviser exposed by Sky News for arranging a sham marriage has been sentenced to seven years in prison for another immigration fraud as reported by local newspapers like Kilburn and Brent Times and the Sky News itself. Jayesh Patel, 35, was first arrested in May 2010 after he was secretly filmed offering to supply a groom to a Sky undercover reporter for 12,500. Information found on Patel’s computer suggested he was also helping migrants obtain visas by inflating their real earnings with bogus salaries and he was re-arrested in September 2011. A number of those clients were seemingly employed by a consultancy firm owned by Mehulkumar Makwana. The Home Office highly skilled migrant scheme was designed to attract

talented workers such as doctors or engineers who could contribute most to the UK economy. The system awarded points for the ability to speak clear English and proof of high earnings. The greater the candidate’s salary, the more points they scored. But low-skilled, poorly paid migrants intent on defrauding the system turned to Patel to help them trick the Home Office into issuing visas. Senior investigating officer Robert Coxhead, from the UK Border Agency’s West London Immigration Crime Team, said: “Patel ran a sophisticated and intricate scam designed to help people who would otherwise have no right to be here in the UK. “He attempted to undermine the UK’s immigration laws and belongs behind bars. He will also face deportation after he

factory in Gloucester, while his mother Zubeda taught sewing classes. They had one other son and two daughters. Badat was educated at Gloucester’s Crypt Grammar School for Boys from 1990 to 1997, a prestigious Church of England School. He was a popular and diligent pupil and left with a string of good qualifications; 10 GCSEs and four A-Levels. He later attended Imperial College and did extremely well in his education.

Immigration adviser jailed for fraud

Jayesh Patel

has served his sentence.” Following a trial at Harrow Crown Court, Patel was found guilty of 19 counts of conspiring to defraud while Makwana was found guilty on six counts. Makwana will be sentenced at a later date. Seven other foreign nationals who benefited from the scam by obtaining UK visas were also convicted.




Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

The carrot or the stick

Private Rents Scandal

Ken Livingstone said last week that if he is elected as the Mayor of London, he will offer every school that wants one, a dedicated police officer to work full time with the young people to break down barriers between young Londoners and the police and help to break the cycle of violence. One wonders if our education system has to stoop so low that schools need police officers to protect children as well as teachers! As news media detail the increasingly violent acts perpetrated by students, schools and social services through out the country scramble to respond to the public’s horror at these acts and to widespread fear for safety of all school children. When the child does not comply with school rules, what is the teacher supposed to do? If the teachers themselves are afraid of the children, how can they teach? Many school children are bigger and stronger than their teachers. Violent students wait outside the schools in gangs and set upon the teacher or their hefty parents take action against action, they are taken to task by the school governors. So this becomes a vicious cycle. Pupils who are not interested should be asked to leave. I was a Maths teacher in Daes-Salaam before coming to this country. I was then just 22 years old and freshly out of university, not much older than my 6th form students, It was a pleasure to teach them as students would be willing to learn. And corporal punishment would be meted out to those who would not comply. The disruptive students would be marched off to the head teacher’s office for strokes of a cane on the backside. Or the teacher himself would wield a thick ruler to hit on the stretched out palm of a hand thus instilling discipline. Now a days the unruly students are given rewards and sent on school outings as a carrot to encourage them towards good behaviour.

Last week, along with Labour’s Mayoral Candidate Ken Livingstone, I met with the Brent Private Tenants Rights Group who I believe are unsung heroes for the support they provide to the Brent’s private-renting tenants. Several months ago I chaired a session with private tenants at Brent Town Hall who voiced their concerns about the problems they have with rogue landlords, unaffordable rents, poor quality of accommodation and the Coalition Government’s ill-thought out changes to housing benefits. These changes are undoubtedly affecting the most vulnerable families, who are effectively being displaced and having to disrupt their entire lives. At the conference last November we heard how many families in Brent are not able to afford their rent and have to move out of the borough. That means a new home, new neighbourhood, new school, potentially a new job and ultimately higher transport costs. Overall private tenants are spending half of their wages on rents in some parts of the country. Brent, Camden and Westminster have the highest rent to earning ratio reported at 56% and London’s housing crisis continues to deepen. Waiting lists are rising, as are rents and house prices. This is because London is lacking in new, good quality, affordable family homes. Under the Tory Mayor Boris Johnson, just 56 new affordable homes were started in the latest 6-month period. It is this shortage of supply which is driving up rents and prices, and allowing a deterioration of the housing stock below a decent standard in many cases. Ken is promising to launch a Tenants’ Charter to defend the interests of all tenants in London, whether they are tenants of private landlords, housing associations or local authorities if he becomes Mayor on 3 May. He’ll also champion an online petition for a London Living rent so no Londoner should be forced to spend more than a third of their income on rent. On my part I’d continue to work with local tenants, organisations and lobby for more affordable, high quality housing and press the coalition Government to reverse changes to housing benefits to reverse the trend of social cleansing.

Dinesh Sheth Newbury Park, Ilford

Corruption in India Your leading article in AV of the 31/3 and Mr Alpesh Patel in his Political Sketchbook write about the rampant corruption in India There cannot be any solution in the circumstances where those who has the power to stop it are themselves busy amassing the fortune.. There is no accountability: those who can seek such accountability are driven deep into poverty and illiteracy. There must be a solution before the very fabric of our civilization is eaten away by these greedy, selfish and hungry vultures. Neither your main article nor Mr Alpesh Patel with all his erudition and experience suggest any such solution. I venture to suggest one: Supreme Court has been busy recently pronouncing judgements against miscreants through Public Interest Litigation. The recent Spectrum Litigation is an example. The following could be tested in the Courts by issuing show cause Notices: against the Government: Why? 1 Is it legal for any Party to put forward a

Navin Shah Labour Candidate for the London Assembly for Brent and Harrow candidate with criminal record? 2 Is it legal for MP with criminal record to represent his constituents? 3 Should the Government not take step to recover all illegal monies in Swiss Bank 4 Should each MP not disclose all his earning and assets held by him and all his/her Relatives/Associates 5 Should the government not take steps to recover bribes from Narendra Modi as reported by Comptroller of Auditor General These are some of the examples. Who will fund such litigation? Why not a charity founded by NRIs? Why? Lots of those in India would have vested interest. Any takers? Gulab Mistry Via Email

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In a rare gesture, China’s top leadership hosted his delegation at Great Hall of People and had a free and frank discussion and exchange of ideas on a range of subjects including trade, industry, socioeconomic development, investment, and prevailing global economic scenario. Modi emphasized about the shared heritage of India and China, and common vision for improved quality of lives of their people. In his meeting with the Mr Wang Gang, Vice Chairman of the China People’s Political

Consultative Conference, (and a member of the politburo of Communist Party of China), Modi showcased Gujarat as a destination with a conducive environment to invest and work. He also explained Gujarat becoming a major tourist destination. He brought out the richness of Buddhist culture in Gujarat which solicited very keen interest among Chinese leadership. He also dwelled upon the ancient Indian and Chinese ethos, relationship, friendship, cultural and business ties. While showcasing

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I refer to your excellent editorial 'Invoking race, faith for electoral fight is untenable' (7/4/2012). I am writing to express my concern on behalf of the British Hindus. London Mayoral candidate Ken Livingston recently said 'I will make London a beacon of Islam'. He expressed these views, which were widely reported in national media, at a Mosque in London as part of his election campaign. British Hindu Voice strongly objects to this form of electioneering where it seems faith and politics are mixed to get bloc votes. This type of electioneering is divisive and will not help those people and organisations who are trying to promote community cohesion. Furthermore, Ken Livingston's views could send alarm bells ringing amongst Hindus, Jain, Sikhs and other faith communities from the perception that their interests will take a back seat should he win the election and become the Mayor of London. A significant number of Hindus, Jains and Sikhs have traditionally voted for the Labour Party and unless a public explanation is forthcoming from the Labour party on how it will promote and protect the interests of Hindus, Jain and Sikhs, it would be wise not to support the Labour candidate Ken Livingstone in the London mayoral election. Mukesh Naker Via Email

Where are the Christian youths? I read your editorial comment on ‘The Bishop’s fears are unfounded’ (AV 14 April 2012) with some degree of scepticism. The Roman Catholic Bishop of Shrewsbury has expressed fears that stripping the Christian foundations would make this country vulnerable to extremists who would move in to establish their doctrine. Your view is that these fears are unfounded and in support you give an example of secular India where all faiths live in peace and harmony generally. I beg to differ. In my view, harmony is achieved in India because the different faiths enjoy a common culture which binds them together rather than religion. This integration by culture gives respect to each other’s religion and so there is no active discrimination between them. In this country, however, Christianity is the state religion. It is divided into so many sects such as Protestants, Catholics, Anglican, Methodists, etc that there does not seem to exist a common bond of unity between them. Also, there is a distinct lack of youth participation in church activities. I think the Bishop may be right. In my days of voluntary community service, I experienced at first hand how, despite wide protests, indigenous councillors went on to support initiatives from ethnic groups for no reason other than securing their votes and how the indigenous electorate showed lethargy and disinterest in local politics. Today, we see so many councillors from ethnic groups making headway in politics and this is fast spreading. Ethnic power at local level is gradually transformed into more power at national level. Then Christian principles begin to give way to religious extremism and this leads to never-ending appeasements and demands from ethnic groups. Uttambhai D Mistry Bolton

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Bombs can not kill ideology US drone strike on a militant compound in Spalga village in Pakistan killed five militants and tens more were injured. Hundreds of such compounds, safe heavens are littered along the border with Afghanistan. US drone strikes have killed some 3000 militants during the last decade but without making any significant difference, as ten more people are willing to take the place of the one killed. Pakistan has now even closed the border crossings after the assassination of Osama bi Laden, carried out secretly under the noses of Pakistan. Since independence Pakistan has gone backward in time. It is a two nation country. While Punjab and Sindh are relatively progressive, North West Frontier and Waziristhan still live in the Dark Age with local laws and customs taking president over the national government. No amount of bombing bar unthinkable nuclear attack would make any difference. Bombs and bullets can not kill, defeat ideology. Islam is a religion, belief, ideology that can not be defeated on the battlefield. West did not defeat Communism by bombing Soviet Union but by projecting Capitalism as a better, democratic and popular political system that gave its citizens a better living standar. West should use Christianity, a progressive, tolerant religion that moves with the time. After all we all like to live, make our home and prosper in the West, may it be Europe, America or Australasia, not super rich Saudi Arabia or Kuwait. Unfortunately the Church, Christianity is in a muddle, unable or unwilling to distinguish between what is a morally right or wrong. This cupid bow culture and leap in the dark will have to stop if Christianity is to remain united and dominant religion in the world. Bhupendra M Gandhi Via Email

2002 Gujarat riots and CM Modi

Clean chit is given to Modiji by Special Investigation Team, appointed by Ahmedabad Metropolitan Court. SIT has not found evidence about N.Modi’s involvement in Gulbarg Society Massacre case. It is upto the court to accept and endorses SIT report. Lack of faith by Zakia Jafri in India’s judiciary and SIT report, is astounding. Would any Muslim country give her complaint so much importance? She is invoking “court of Lord above”, for justice. Would she be happy if that court hands out punishments to Muslims who committed atrocities against Hindus eg. Mopla massacre in 1920 by Muslims for events in Turkey; Day of direct action massacre, to push demand for Pakistan; then Mr Jinnah did not ask for army intervention, but gave a day off to police, result-10,000 Hindus were killed; genocide of train loads of Hindus during exodus; killings Kashmiri pandits in1989 to expel them? After riots in 2002, Muslims have continued to develop Gujarat, and nearly forgiven Modi ji. In return Muslims are reaping fruits of progressive Gujarat. Plus, there are no communal riots in past 12 years; Muslims have repeatedly voted Modiji as the CM. It is wrongly suggested that Modi ji should apologise and pray to Ram. Ramesh Jhalla Via Email

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Brand ‘Gujarat’ – which is equated with Guangdong of China, he invited Chinese business community and public enterprises to participate in the Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors’ Summit- 2013. He highlights Gujarat’s special investment regions as areas where Chinese companies could invest. He called on China to invest in infrastructure and power projects in the state, wooing potential investors with a sales pitch that showcased Gujarat as a state with levels of “governance, transparency and stability” that they could not find elsewhere in India. He declared that “the two great countries will make Asia the centrestage of the global economy.”

Ken Livingstone and his divisive politics


A new theory says that any physical activity for 15 minutes every day is a good insurance against a plethora of health problems, be it related to the heart, the brain or even cancer. A study published in The Lancet, a British medical journal, said that just a quarter-hour of physical exertion a day could reduce a person's risk of death by 14% and increase life expectancy by three years compared to inactive people. Incidentally, another theory published in a different British journal said daily TV-viewing for six hours could take

away five years from your life. Adding and subtracting years from your life has never before been quantified in such medical terms, say doctors. The 15-minute short-cut to good health, in fact, changes the most fundamental rule that was approved by the World Health Organizationthat 150 minutes of activity a week is needed to stay healthy. E'=#A=I)K%'=%:<>)%-"




Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012


Making a change at India's Grassroots Bridging distances through community celebration - Women’s festival

Mr Vijay Poddar

India is a land of festivals and festivals are the best way to mobilise and connect people in the country. However in this patriarchal society, in some regions, festivals in the past many decades became more and more class, status and caste oriented with gender overtones. While some castes would dance and sing others would refrain from joining, thinking that it was something relegated to caste. This was the scenario before SARVAM started to organise annual women festivals ‘Magalir Vizha’ within the community it was working with.

Attracting 600-700 women from 25-60 years of age from across all castes, social and economic backgrounds this one week long festival has become a model of how collective women self-esteem can be raised and change initiated. The inventiveness was based on a simple principle – build positive tangible bridges between non-interacting communities and let change unfold.

Before SARVAM started to work in these villages, the situation was such that the two main community fractions – Schedule castes and Most Backward Class (castes as defined under the Indian constitution for various reservations) had never positively interacted for centuries. These two fractions have their separate temples, colonies and never participate in each other’s celebrations like births, marriages etc. Marriages are strictly within the caste. On the other hand the neighbouring villages also had no information access to each other. For centuries again the seven villages that SARVAM is working with had not really interacted on constructive terms. In this scenario when SARVAM organised Magalir Vizha, meaning women’s festival in Tamil, for the first time on 2 February in 2006, it witnessed more than 1000 women participating from four hamlets. Since then this annual festival has not only become a very creative plat-

form of interaction but also has broken open the notion that only lower caste people can sing and dance and sees wider participation from women of upper caste who not only mingle and compete on the same stage with women of other castes, but also encourage their children to take classes in dancing and singing. A big change indeed! Last year when the festival was organised SARVAM had no idea of all the

creative recipes women would come up with. The criterion was tight as participants had to source ingredients from within the village and it was strictly vegetarian. Women came up with 60 delicious recipes. Poomadavi, a from housewife Nadupalayam village won the first prize for her very healthy and innovative recipe of steamed ragi idlis with coconut and sugar.

Newham Council crack down on litterbugs who fail to pay their fines Litterbugs are warned they will face court if they fail to pay fines following the successful prosecutions of 48 offenders. At Thames Magistrates Court, 48 people were found guilty of failing to pay fixed penalty notices by Newham issued Council for littering. The average fine ordered by magistrates was £108 plus £100 court costs and £15 victim surcharge. In total, the council recouped more than £11,000. This was the first time the council's officers had prosecuted so many

offenders Cllr Ian Corbett, Executive Member for Environment and Infrastructure said: "We will use every power at our disposal, including going to court, to deal with those who think dropping litter on our streets is acceptable. "These successful prosecutions show we will not tolerate littering. Ignoring a FPN will not make the matter go away. Instead, you will be taken to court with the prospect of an even larger amount to pay. That really is throwing

good money away. "Our enforcement officers work hard, sometimes in the face of severe provocation, to keep the borough clean. We have a duty to pursue through the courts the offenders who don't pay. Littering is not fair on residents who take pride in where they live. We will continue to take robust action." For further information about the Community Safety team go to our community safety pages. To report littering or other anti-social behaviour call 0800 731 3300.

Young people with special educational needs (SEN) and disabilities now have the confidence and ability to travel on public transport independently thanks to a new pilot project. Around 11 young people aged between 11 and 25 years with SEN or disabilities were awarded with certificates and medals by Cllr Alan Weinberg, Cabinet Member for Children's Services at Redbridge Town Hall last month after completing the Independent Travel Training Programme over the past six months. The Independent

Travel Training programme is delivered by charity DABD UK on behalf of the Council. DABD supports socially excluded people across London and the UK. Each young person receives a personalised Travel Plan which they, their family and fullytrained Travel Trainers all input into. This provides them with a step-by-step plan for their journey. The length of the training programme depends on the ability and needs of the young person and can be anything from four to six weeks. This is determined at the start of the pro-

gramme but is reviewed along the way depending on the progress of the student. Once completed, it is expected that each young person will then be able to travel to school and college independently by either walking or using public transport. Where this isn't always possible for some young people they will be set realistic goals like learning social skills and other life skills like handling money and personal safety awareness, to ensure they have achieved and feel positive about their training.

Young people with disabilities praised for travelling independently

Other competitions in the week-long festival include Kolam (floor drawings with powder colours) competition, skill games and dancing and singing competitions! The festival also involves village and temple cleanliness drives, discussions on sharing domestic problems and finding common solutions and interaction with a woman doctor on reproductive and general health. The festival gradually in the past six years has become something which women look forward to with the same eagerness as they look up to age-old community and temple festivals. Every year while they are becoming more and more well dressed and fashionistas in their own way, deep down they are also opening up to many possibilities of individual and collective growth and harmony! If you would like to know more about SARVAM and their activities or would like to donate please speak to Mrs Shilpa Shah on 07931717288 (between 2.00 p.m. to 6.00 p.m) or email on

Half of free schools have no site, minister says Half the free schools set to open later this year have not yet secured a site, Schools Minister Nick Gibb has said. Just 35 of the 79 approved to open in 2012 have found premises, Mr Gibb said in response to a parliamentary question from Labour's Stephen Twigg. The shadow education secretary said the government's flagship freeschools policy was in "disarray". But the government said site negotiations were progressing for the vast majority.

Free schools are statefunded schools started by parents, teachers or other groups. They are accountable to central government rather than the local authority, and as such do not benefit from the help local councils offer mainstream school in finding sites. A charity that works with the government on the free-school project, the New Schools Network, said finding a site was often the most challenging aspect of setting them up. Chief operating officer Natalie Evans told the


Times Educational Supplement: "This is something the government really needs to think about." She added: "Finding premises is extremely difficult, and is one of the biggest frustrations and a real headache for groups." The charity is thinking of asking the government to try to persuade developers to offer sites for free schools when they undertake new projects. He urged the government to think again and address the real need in the system for primaryschool places.

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Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Leading Lights

Food for Life Vrindavan organises celebratory dinner

by Rani Singh

Special Assignments Editor

Guy Gunaratne, 27 is the Creative Director of CODOC, an award-winning documentary company based in London. Guy believes storytelling is a powerful tool to promote advocacy and engagement. Working with partner Heidi Lindvall, CODOC is dedicated to creating space for critical thinking through documentary. Guy and Heidi’s distinct brand of nuanced storytelling that goes against the grain of traditional campaign - led advocacy has given them the reputation of disruptors in the field of human rights documentary-making. Guy is a Virgin Media Pioneer- part of a free and open online peer-to peer community for young entrepreneurs. Q. How did the idea for “The Truth That Wasn’t There,” your film about the conflict in Sri Lanka, come about? A. I was just a student at the time, finishing up an MA in Current Affairs Journalism at City University. Heidi, a photographer friend of ours, Philip Panchenko, and I arrived in Sri Lanka only a few weeks after the war ended. At the time, Sri Lanka exploded as a news story around the world. The Sri Lankan government was not letting independent journalists report from the frontline as it was worried about its global reputation. So when we approached the government about getting access we simply told it the truth: that we were only students and weren’t affiliated with any established news agency. It agreed and we ended up becoming the first independent journalists to cross the frontline. We came back with an unprecedented 30 hours of footage and over 4,000 photographs of the area. I put that down to the fact that we didn’t see the fact that we were students as a hindrance but as an opportunity. It’s worked out well, the film won an award from “Film South Asia” last year and we’ve been touring since then with Amnesty International in the US. Q. What access did you get for making the film? A. We were given access to Menik Farm, which was at the time the largest and most infamous Internally Displaced Persons camp in the world. We went as far as Chalai and Mullaitivu, the final battle grounds and where the LTTE (Tamil Tigers) were finally crushed. In

the film we speak about our journey, how we felt about what we found and the tragedy of the moment we realised that the truth of what exactly happened on those beaches had been lost. Q. Did you get any mentors or advice? A. Both Heidi and I have from the very outset made sure to surround ourselves with mentors and people who can advise us in what we hope to build with CODOC. By now we’ve collected quite a cast, and that means individuals from a broad range of fields; filmmakers, producers, business leaders, and financial managers. I think it is important to surround yourself with people who energize you and spur you on to the next level – especially when everyone else tells you that you’re crazy.

“Surround yourself with people who energize you and spur you on to the next level especially when everyone tells you that you’re crazy.” Q. How have your parents influenced your outlook? A. Immensely. I always talk about how my father found himself in the UK after boarding a boat on a Sri Lanka harbour. In many ways his is the typical immigrant story. He must have endured many from his tiny village telling him to stay home and settle down. Instead he made that journey and because he had the guts to do so he managed to create a life of endless possibilities for his two sons; my brother and I. Q. How was the Virgin

CB along with Rupaprabhudas gifting Nitin Ganatra with Love Gujarat Coffee Table Magazine

Guy Gunaratne

Media Pioneer group a support? A. Virgin Media Pioneers is a social network for young entrepreneurs. Last year we became sponsored Pioneers on the program. It’s incredibly inspiring as it creates a supportive environment where young entrepreneurs get to grow together, share their triumphs and challenges. If you want to meet the next generation of future business leaders, this is the place to start. There are some amazing stories on the site and I’d recommend anyone to become part of it. Q. Future plans? A. Together with Heidi I founded CODOC to really change the game when it comes to human rights documentar y-making. Our upcoming project, “Forgive Me Mother” about formerly abducted child soldiers in Northern Uganda will be released very soon and later this year we’re set to launch CODOC.TV; a channel dedicated to telling great stories in a new way, incorporating the latest in social media and technology, and using the internet as a platform. In the next three to five years we hope to become pioneers in the upcoming television app market. You can follow our journey at in the mean time!

Food for Life Vrindavan UK Limited held a celebratory dinner on Friday evening, 6 April 2012 to appreciate the support of their UK donors in making Kiki Nangla School Project in Vrindavan a success. The function, despite being Good Friday was well attended by over 120 people at the Cinnamon Function Suite, above Raw Spice Restaurant in West Hendon Broadway. The function was attended by Rupa Raghunath Das, the International coordinator of Food for Life Vrindavana, and it’s brand ambassador in the UK, Nitin Ganatra of Eastenders. Unfortunately the charity’s brand ambassador in India, Vivek Oberoi of Bollywood fame, could not attend due to pressing engagements but sent a video message which was relayed. After the guests had been served with cocktail non-alcoholic drinks and starters the programme began with a dance by Demini Varia. Ravin Ganatra, the MC for the evening, introduced Bhikhubhai Parmer who gave the historical background of the UK Charity (registered with the UK Charities Commission and HM Revenue & Customs) which was formed in September 2006 by Harsha Pandya. The current trustees are Mini Pattni, Bhikhu Parmar, Kaushik Desai and C B Patel. The objectives of the charity in the main are to educate the poorest of the poor. Kaushik Desai explained that the money was raised through major

events, regular donors and child sponsorship where the UK charity has 140 The monthly donors. charity has had three major events, the Asian Achievers Award held by Gujarat Samachar in 2009, the Diwali Function in 2010 and a function held by the Jewish community in 2011 which raised £275,000; the total raised since 2007 was over £1m with a cost of £52,000 – 5% of the income raised. The policy of Food for Life Vrindavan is to generally remit all the funds raised to India with minimal costs in the UK – just under a £1m has been remitted to India. A second dance following the main course which was performed by mother and daughter, Mrs Yaksha and Demini Varia. Rupa Raghunath Das then gave a presentation of the progress made in building Kiki Nangla School in Vrindavan and he reported that the school had now been built and that it was operational. There were still unfinished classrooms and Nitin Mehta and his wife Jyotsna Mehta donated £2,500 for the comple-

tion of the classrooms in memory of his mother, Mrs Kanchanben Mehta. Rupa noted that the Indian charity raised over $1.9 million for the year ended 31 March 2012 and that the total number of children now studying in the school were just over 1,300. C B Patel then spoke a few words where he gave a history of his involvement with the charity and he and his family had donated a substantial sum of money (in excess of £35,000) as he genuinely believed that Rupa was doing a tremendous job in India in educating children at a minimal cost. He further went on to say that he would donate a further £25,000 if Rupa was prepared to build another school in Gujarat. He made a spontaneous gesture by paying for the cost of the evening for which the Trustees are extremely grateful. Ganatra of Nitin Eastenders then gave his account of his involvement in the charity and C B presented Nitin with a copy of the Coffee Book called Love Gujarat. Jay Kumar then did a dance with the audience participation which the guests thoroughly enjoyed. Miniben Pattni gave a vote of thanks to all those involved in making the function a success. The guests then enjoyed the music and the deserts and departed around midnight knowing that their donations had been well used for a worthy cause in educating the poor of the poorest children, particularly girls, who are the backbone of any family.

Yaksha and Demini Varia, mother and daughter duo performing at the event

Government not to appeal Qatada decision The government will not appeal against the controversial European court of human rights ruling blocking the deportation of the radical Islamist cleric Abu Qatada, the home secretary is to tell MPs this afternoon. Instead, Theresa May, pictured, will attempt to convince a British high court judge that she has

made sufficient "demonstrable progress" in securing assurances from the Jordanian government about Qatada's treatment to prevent him being freed from virtual house arrest. The announcement is expected to lead to Qatada's lawyers making an application to the special immigration appeals commission for the highly

restrictive bail conditions on the terror suspect to be lifted.

JayKumar teaching some moves to the guests at the event


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012


Asians in Boroughs during forthcoming Olympics

Oxford don arrested not to face murder charge

Prof Steven Rawlings

Dr Devinderjit Sivia

Crown Prosecutor for Thames and Chiltern CPS, said: ‘Following inquiries by Thames Valley Police, I have concluded, in accordance with the Code for Crown

Prosecutors, that there is insufficient evidence to put before a court. ‘Professor Steven Rawlings died at the Oxfordshire home of a

St Luke’s is a haven

Nalini Pattni

Indian Cookery for the BBC more than 30 years ago, and returned in 1995 for The Flavours of India. She is also an actress, having appeared in films and TV shows including a stint in EastEnders. The programme is expected to air later this year.

St Luke’s Hospice presents the Angelic Voice of

Nalini in Concert Saturday 19th May, 7pm–10pm Watersmeet Theatre (High Street, Rickmansworth WD3 1EH)

Tickets from £15

Nalini will once again be taking to the stage & singing Bollywood classics as well as her own hits 'Jhumka & Banke Dhadkan'. Also featuring her daughter KRUPA performing her own works... Electro Soul pop!

Book Now: Krupa Pattni

sensitive and aware of our feelings. The energy there was so positive and calming. People shouldn’t think of it as place where people end their lives. For Rinku it was a place to get the medical care and attention she needed for a time and then come home. We were with her all the time, stayed with her, slept over and spent all of the time together. We have lovely memories’ Krupa Pattni Book online at Or call Jemini on 020 8382 8018

Nalini For more information contact: Jemini on 020 8382 8018






‘St Luke’s was a haven for my sister. They were all incredible, so

Madhur Jaffrey to return to TV Indian cooking guru Madhur Jaffrey is returning to TV with her first major new series for 17 years. The 78-year-old will make the 10-part serial about the impact of curry on the UK for the Good Food channel. Jaffrey fronted her landmark programme


Nalini Pattni’s 29 year old daughter Rinku Pattni died of cancer in June 2009. During her illness she was cared for at home by St Luke’s Community Team as well as the Hospice’s In Patient Unit. Nalini and her daughter Krupa were so impressed by their experience with St Luke’s they have been active fundraisers ever since. After a sell out concert in the 2011 they are organising another event at the Watersmeet Theatre on the 19th May this year. St Luke’s provides free end of life care for the people of Harrow and Brent, but relies on the support of the commu-

nity for over 70% of its funding, so the money raised by events like ‘Nalini in concert’ makes a tremendous difference patients and their families. My reason for getting involved for this very worthy cause is very simple. I had not realised what St Luke's Hospice stood for until I came to know them personally. My daughter Rinku passed away in 2009. Her illness was diagnosed very late and within a year, she parted from us to start a new journey, a new role... During her illness she was cared for at home by the St Luke’s community team, as well as the Hospices inpatient unit. St Luke’s was a haven for Rinku and all money raised from this concert will go to the Hospice. I thank you all for supporting this cause so close to my heart. We want to make sure St Luke’s is around for future generations in Harrow. Nalini Pattni

believe Devinder should be tarnished in this way.’ Describing her husband as a ‘well-loved, caring, intelligent, sensitive man’, she added: ‘Steve and Devinder were best friends since college and I believe this is a tragic accident.’

Prof Rawlings’ widow, Linda Rawlings, rallied to support Dr Sivia following his arrest. In a statement issued through Thames Valley Police, Mrs Rawlings said: ‘I do not believe that Steve’s death is murder and I do not


An Oxford University don will not be prosecuted in connection with the death of a professor, the Crown Prosecution Service said on Monday. Devinderjit Sivia, 49, was arrested at his home in Southmoor, Oxfordshire, on suspicion of murder in January after police discovered the body of 50-year-old Professor Steven Rawlings there. The two academics had been friends for 30 years and had published a book together. Dr Sivia, had been due to answer bail on Wednesday following a police investigation into the death. Baljit Ubhey, Chief

friend on Wednesday January 11 2012. ‘A post-mortem examination was conducted, but was inconclusive and further tests were required. Devinderjit Sivia was arrested, interviewed and bailed pending further inquiries. I received a file from Thames Valley Police, have considered all the evidence, and have decided that Devinderjit Sivia will not face any charges in relation to the death of Steven Rawlings. ‘I extend my sincere sympathies to Mrs Rawlings for the death of her husband. An inquest will take place in due course.’

tively by the existing organisations responsible for London Olympics? 16.Have you received information from relevant agencies and institutions regarding the London Olympics? How great traffic snarls may be during that time? Any information on security from pick pocketer's? 17.Do you think that the social and economic dynamics of the local communities, specially Asians have been considered by local authorities? Are you aware what informations you need and how soon from the authorities? 18.Will these 24 hour supermarket opening affect your businesses? 19.Do you have any advice to give to organisers of the London Olympics to ensure it would benefit local business community during Olympics? 20.Do you know the prices of property in East London has increased by 15% or at-least by £35,000 since London's winning bid was announced?


Questions 1.Are you aware of Olympic Dates? 2.Do you know how many tourists are expected in London during Olympics? 3.Have you got any clue, how many games are going to take place?

4.Do you know which 6 boroughs are hosting Olympics this time? 5.Do you know what is the percentage of Asian/ South-Asians in these boroughs? 6.Do many owners/ managers in Green Street and Brick lane know about Olympics? 7.Do they know how can it affect their businesses? 8.Do suppliers discuss the effects of Olympics with their business partners from these areas? 9.Do entrepreneurs have any information on business opportunities in their local areas in these boroughs? 10.Are you aware of any events and businesses connected with the London Olympics? 11.Do managers/ owners in businesses have any information on how to participate? 12.What can be perceived benefits, opportunities in short term, mid term, long term, any ideas? 13.Are you aware that population at large will affect from forthcoming Olympics? 14.Did local people knew about the job opportunities in the highlighted areas? Like construction, transport, hospitality, accommodation, media and information technology? 15.Have your needs in business been considered sensi-


London 2012 Olympics is now less then14 weeks away, its a very historic achievement. Everybody in this country is looking towards it with tremendous excitement and involvement. Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar is coming up with a special issue to focus our minds to this, once in a lifetime celebration. ! What is happening! ! How it affects us, those who live in the vicinity of the various events! ! What are our perceptions ! Have we been involved in the process so far These are some of the questions which our special issue will look at. We would invite all our readers to respond to the following 20 questions at the earliest opportunity, latest by 30th April 2012. Your views are very important, please avail this opportunity and have your say!

!" +#,

Find Nalini Ji & KRUPA on Facebook

Charity Reg No. 298555



India Connect Q & A: Visa to India I travel to India frequently for business meetings/to explore opportunities for partnerships with Indian companies. Which visa should I apply for? You may apply for a business visa valid for multiple entries for either six months or one year along with the requisite documents as per the checklist. Note that a business visa does Jiten Vyas, VFS Global not permit you to work in India. If you want to work in India, you should apply for an employment visa.We also currently offer the service of an Urgent Business Visa for those applicants who are required to receive their business visa the same day. Conditions apply; please visit us at for more details I have to go for internship/training in a university/institute/company in India for a short period. Which visa should I apply for? You should apply for an entry visa along with a copy of the offer letter stating the terms of internship. You may also be required to submit a copy of the inter-university student exchange agreement if the proposed internship is a component of such an agreement. If you receive any monetary compensation/salary from the Indian organisation, you will have to apply for an employment visa. For more details please visit us at I will be going to India for work/employment along with my family. Which visa should I apply for? Would my children be able to study in India? You must apply for an employment visa along with the requisite documents. Once your visa application is approved, your wife and children may apply for entry visas. Your children will be able to get admission in schools/colleges in India once they have been granted an entry visas. Note that you have to undergo mandatory registration formalities at the nearest office of the FRRO/FRO within 14 days of your arrival in India if you are planning to stay in the country for more than 180 days. I will be studying in India for one semester/trimester in an IIT/IIM/IISc/Indian university. Which visa should I apply for? You should apply for a student visa along with a copy of the letter from the institute/university confirming your acceptance as a student. For more details please visit us at I had applied for a visa for India but I have changed my mind about visiting the country. Can I claim a refund of the visa fee? Visa Fees are non-refundable once the visa application is accepted and visa fee cannot be refunded even if the visa is refused. It's been a while since I submitted my application and passport. How can I find out the status of my application? You can track your application online by visiting our website. Alternatively, you call our helpline on 0905 757 0045 between 0830 hrs to 1730 hrs from Monday to Friday (Calls to the premium rate number cost 95 pence per minute) A response of ‘No Record Found’ is a result of incorrect information being entered into the required fields on the website required to directly associate your specific status. If you continue to face such a message, please email Can I collect my passport from the High Commission of India, London or the Consulate General in Edinburgh and Birmingham? Please note you have to collect your passport from the India Visa Application Centre where you submitted the application.

For more information regarding any quires about Indian Visa please contact by email or post: Email: Customer Relations Department. India Visa Application Center, 60-62 Wilton Road, London SW1V 1DE

India Connect - your questions answered on India visas” a service offered by

Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Britons want to escape Britain? One in five Britons with more than 251,595 in savings are thinking of living abroad because they are tired of crime, poor weather and the high cost of living, the wealth management arm of Lloyds Banking Group said on Monday. Britain, facing the worst economic crisis in a century, is grappling with how to preserve its image as a safe-haven for the international rich while increasing taxes and slashing public spending. But research from Lloyds TSB International Wealth showed that 19% of wealthy Britons were thinking of moving to euro zone countries like France and Spain or further afield to the US, Australia, New Zealand or Canada.

For more stories visit

Short Story by Neha Garg

The Saviour And she saw, From far away, The white horse, Her saviour gray. Galloping together, over the mountains. As the clouds showered, their nectar fountains. As he reached her, she blushed, The love in her heart, to her eyes rushed. The horse stood, whinnying its song, He lifted her veil, and admired her long. Much as she did, want to kiss him deep, she knew she must wait, and not let the joy, to her heart leap. He whispered words, she could no longer hear, She had him finally, the one she held dear.

Together, they shall, cross all borders. There shall be no more spite, and no hurried orders. The hills shall be their home, the flowers, their rugs.

And all they shall need, would be said with a hug. He whispered this dream, as the horse bowed its head, and together they galloped, into the sun that set.

A new history of international catholic Goan’s unveiled

Anthological researcher Stella Mascarenhas-Keyes compiles over fourty years of study in her first book Shweta Desai Fourty years after she undertook her doctoral research, Stella Mascarenhas-Keyes has finally published her long over-due book on the International Catholic Goan Community. Titled Colonialism, Migration and The International Catholic Goan Community, the United Kingdom launch of the book was held at The House of Commons, Westminster on Monday. The book is already released in India in December last year on the occasion of 450 years of Goa’s liberation from the Portuguese colonialism. Its UK launch was attended by MP Valerie Vaz and councillor Rabi Martins amongst others. Speaking about her research to Asian Voice, Mascarenhas said that it was the lack of knowledge about Goans the world over and particularly amongst the British, which strengthened her desire to write a book. Mascarenhas said during her school year she studied all about the British colonialism and its history; however there was no particular awareness about the Goans. “There is a very strong Portugese and British influence in Goa which has resulted in a unique cultural identity of us Goans and it was important to tell people about its rich history,” she said. Born in Nairobi, Kenya and later moved to Britain, Mascarenhas’s association with Goa had been fairly less, barring a

took it as the money was good when transferred to India,” she said. It is this ethos of m i g r a t i o n , Mascarenhas explains which resulted in a long trend of migration amongst Goans to Lisbon, London, Bahrain, Bombay, Sydney, Nairobi and Toronto which is termed as the ‘Goan spider’s web.’ MP Valerie Vaz and Councillor Rabi Martin were amongst the According to a study dignitaries present for the the book's UK launch conducted in 2008, the Goans accounted for 9 The book primarily one off visit, until her parper cent of the total migradeals with the history of ents decided to move back tion in the UK. Goa with a case study on from East Africa to their Like her own family, Amora village, the native home town for the author foresees a Portuguese colonialism, good. The regular visits to return of the second or the creation of the Catholic her ancestral village third generation of Goans Goan community, ecoopened a whole new world living abroad back to their nomic deterioration, complete with its unique homeland. “Just like migration and the emerculture, history, lifestyle Bangalore and Chennai, gence of the International and problems as well. Goa will have a lot of Catholic Goan Mascarenhas’s first underNRIs coming back to stay, Community. “A number of took a detailed study on provided the economy improves,” she says adding that Goa never fails to charm and relax her every time she visits. Perhaps, this observation also comes from the fact that Mascarenhas’s four boys have recently started discovering their Goan roots from their mother’s side and to whom the book is dedicated representing the new generation. “It is like a second home for us. Although its much different from the rest of India, Stella along with her sons posing for the book launch at we do feel a connection the House of Commons and a part of it,” says the oldest son Aidan. Goans were able to get the Goans in 1977 for her Although for most Portuguese passports research paper ‘Goans in Europeans and Westerners which allowed them to London’ which further Goa spells beaches, parenter Europe for better job translated itself in the ties and cheap alcohol, opportunities. Even if book in its current format, Mascarenhas’s sons beg to these included menial jobs albeit with much more differ, “It is not an escape like cleaner or butler, they detailed information. for us, it means a home.”


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night to be performed in Hindi at the Globe


f ashionista

by Debasree Ghosh

Be a Fashionista, Be You! If you have any questions or a story or a new style to share with us, please write to Shree at

Spring Trends

Fresh from performing at the Hackney Empire, the Company Theatre from Mumbai returns to London (2 performances only) with a new interpretation of the Twelfth Night for the prestigious Globe to Globe festival at Shakespeare’s Globe. Atul Kumar, their artistic director, is trained in the traditional Indian dance and martial art forms of Kathakali and Kalerippayattu, and is delighted to return to the UK with his vibrant version of this comic classic. The Company Theatre is eighteen years old and has won the respect and admiration of the artistic community in India as well as in other parts of

the world. With 25 years of experience in the theatre as an actor and director, Atul Kumar is the Artistic Director of the company. Atul has performed more than 50 plays in different languages and forms in India and abroad. Apart from his theatrical career, Atul has worked in films, television series, and commercials. Twelfth Night will tour to Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and beyond. The Globe to Globe festival is part of the Cultural Olympiad 2012. For the first time, 37 international companies present all 37 of Shakespeare’s plays in 37 different languages in an incredible,

six week festival at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, London. Other Asian productions include The Tempest in Bangla (7 and 8 May), All’s Well That Ends Well in Gujarati (23 and 24 May), and The Taming of the Shrew in Urdu (25 and 26 May). Twelfth Night is being performed on 27 and 28 April. Tickets for Globe to Globe start at just 5, and can be bought by phone on 020 7401 9919, or online at Special Offer for Asian Voice readers! Best available seats for 10 (saving 25). Quote ‘Asian Voice 10 best seats’ over the phone or enter code ‘PCD10BEST’ online.

Here it is! The summing up of all the trends that emerged on spring/summer catwalks and is quickly being translated into more approachable High Street versions. Get ready for a wardrobe refresh. Pastels: After months of eye searing neon, we are naturally left craving soothing cool colours. Thus the invasion of pretty pastels seen everywhere from Calvin Klein to Valentino. Go ahead and give in to your girly side in sweet, mouthwatering ice cream shades. Mint is a particularly coveted colour.

Art Deco: Fashion is famously recyclable. This season, almost every decade of the last century got an airing on the cat-

walks. But the most celebrated was the twirling Twenties. Deco opulence and Gatsby glamour … what’s not to love? One of my favourite trends.

Doily Lace: This trend shows no sign of abating. New season only has it back with bigger bolder patterns. Oscar de la Renta and Erdem put lace on everything from skirts, blouses to shoes. Score a pencil skirt in pale lace for major fashion points.

Ab Fab: It’s crunch time. Better get that tum in

shape if you plan to flaunt your midriff. Designeres banded together this season in their support of exposed abs like never before. The key is to keep the belly button under wraps, exposing just a tasteful sliver of skin below the bandeu.

Pleats: In every form and shape. Box pleats on feminine A-line skirts. Sunray pleats in floaty shiffon. Even in subtle ways on silk blouses. Keep the look current and opt for dreamy pale colours and pair with either neutral or stripes.

Happy shopping!


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Mahesh Babu replaces Rajinikanth

Mahesh has begun to get national acceptance as south Indian superstar. Though it is not discussed in open, the general fact is that there has always been a divide between the north and south in the entertainment industry. So it is hard for those in the south to make their presence felt in the north. But one man broke the shackles few decades back. He is superstar Rajinikanth. Even today, he has a mass following across the nation and many are eager to watch him onscreen. Now, it appears that a suitable replacement has come for Rajini. This is in the form of Mahesh Babu. Yes, Mahesh has begun to get national acceptance as south Indian superstar. Recently he was roped in for the ad of the soft drink Thums Up and this has got a major response.

Parvathy Omanakuttan makes Kollywood debut Model-turned-actress Parvathy Omanakuttan makes her film debut opposite Southern superstar Ajith. She said that makers of “Billa 2” spotted her through a fashion show. Excited about her film debut Parvathy explains that she wants to continue to do more films and roles that will excite her in future. Parvathy made it to Femina Miss India 2008 finals and then Miss India World title with sub-titles of Miss Photogenic, Miss Personality and Miss Beautiful Hair. She was the first Runner-Up at the Miss World competition in 2008.

Passionate lip-lock upsets Amala Paul After signing the job of a lead actress in a commercial film, any hot girl has to undergo knife, for cutting shyness. Amala Paul too did one such act and now that it is upsetting her. Amala’s first masala entertainer is Tamil movie 'Vettai', which is soon going to be dubbed into Telugu as 'Bhale Tammudu'. She has done a hot liplocking scene with hero Arya in this movie. While talking about the lip-lock, Arya revealed that he is very uncomfortable with that act and it was Amala who has initiated it for a fine finish. Till date, both these celebrities are finding solace in each other's lap and the news has put sudden brakes to their relationship.

Hot Garam masala No one is my buddy in Bollywood: Bipasha Even after completing a decade in the industry, actress Bipasha Basu says she has no close friends in Bollywood. The 33-year-old actress says she has her own reservations when it comes to approaching a filmmaker for a role. "If I meet someone at a function, I do say hello. I am cordial to all. However, I can't pick up the phone next morning and propose to plan a film together. A lot of this is also due to the fact that no one is my buddy in Bollywood. I know that for some out there this does count. Nothing wrong with that but then that's just not me," said Bipasha.

Salman Khan named 'worst actor' Salman Khan has bagged worst actor of the year title at this year’s Ghanta Awards for his performance in “Bodyguard” and “Ready.” On the other hand, Shah Rukh Khan’s “Ra.One” won the worst film of the year award. Director of ‘Ready’ and ‘Bodyguard,’ Anees Bazmee, was awarded the worst director of the year. The ‘Ghanta Awards’ which was started two years go celebrate and reward the worst of Bollywood films.

Soha takes piano classes, pleases mommy dearest Actress Sharmila Tagore and daughter Soha Ali Khan share a strong bonding and these days the younger one is making her mommy happy by learning to play the Piano. As a child, Soha used to learn to play the instrument, but didn't like it much. But she has resumed her piano classes and Sharmila is more than happy. "Many, many years down the line, I remembered that my mom had this dream and this vision of her growing old and me playing the piano for her and the house being full of music. So, I thought it's better late than never. I have started learning how to play the piano," Soha said.

Kareena is serious about marriage plans


Hrithik's ‘Krrish 3’ for adults

In the new instalment of the Krrish series, Hrithik Roshan will not just fight the bad guys but with himself. A source reveals that the new film will be the darkest in the series, and has a violent twist. While the first two movies catered primarily to kids, “Krrish 3” will be made for an adult audience. Taking a cue from the last “Spiderman” film, where Peter Parker surrenders to the dark force, Krrish too will be seen battling his inner demons. This track will be one of the film's highlights. Apart from his personal struggle, there will also be other interesting elements. The source adds, "Kangana Ranaut plays an alien, and she will have an army of ani-

December and February are the two months that are being speculated as the time when actors Kareena Kapoor and Saif Ali Khan are expected to tie the knot. In fact, the industry insiders are betting more on the date being in December than February, given their work schedules. But while everyone around the stars seems to be prepping up for their marriage, Kareena herself is still not ready to talk about the ‘M’-word or reveal a fixed date and sources too insist that no date has been finalised yet, though talks are still on between them and the families to zero in on a date soon. “Let’s see. I am as curious about the date as you are,” she laughs. “There’s no reason why I would hide it? So, I just hope people would stop speculating about it,” she says. But whenever the date, Kareena reveals that she has no plans to slow down on the work front at all. “I’m not slowing down or anything as such, just being choosey as always,” she explains why she hasn’t signed too many films post ‘Heroine,’ insisting that it has nothing to do with marriage. “I have always done films at a pace that I enjoy.” I’m not here to create records or beat anyone at numbers. I just enjoy the process of acting and am happy being remunerated for what I deserve, the rest of the dynamics don’t matter.” Kareena also pooh-poohs all buzz of pushing the wedding date to give priority to work. “As an actor yes, I will stick to commitments and there’s no compromise on professionalism, but I have always maintained that I have a life apart from my profession and that part of me is very precious for me. Saif and my family will always be top priority for me, no matter what,” she shares.

mals who will create havoc in Krrish's life. Her character will be a total badass, and major action scenes are planned between Krrish and her." While Koi Mil Gaya had the friendly alien character Jadoo to provide comic relief and had four kids, they are all missing from the third instalment. The source adds that director Rakesh Roshan "wants to focus on action scenes and bring out the violent streak in the protagonist. There will be blood and gore." The buzz is that the series has moved away from the usual formula to give the film an edge over other superhero flicks like “RA.One,” which dazzled the audience with its stateof-the-art special effects.

Imtiaz Ali impressed by Karisma returns to Bollywood with ‘Dangerous Ishhq’ Shahid Kapoor First impressions are almost always the most lasting. Director Imtiaz Ali and wife Preeti have decided to cast their blue-eyed boy Shahid Kapoor as leading man in a film Preeti is producing for UTV Motion Pictures, which is a remake of the 2009 South Korean flick “My Girlfriend Is An Agent.” Interestingly, Bosco of Bosco Caesar will make his directorial debut with this film. A source close to the project said, "Imtiaz was very happy with Shahid's work in ‘Jab We Met.’ Bebo and he got a lot of taalis in the

film. Shahid's role won many accolades. It wasn't an easy role but he did it with so much conviction. Ever since, Imtiaz has wanted to work with Shahid. Preeti too loved his acting in the film." As for Shahid, he has simply loved the offer, the source revealed, adding, "The modalities are being worked out. He may not do UTV's Hindi remake of ‘Vettai’ but he might just do this film for them now." Despite repeated attempts, Imtiaz remained unavailable for comment.

Nargis Fakhri learns Kathak Nargis Fakhri enjoys dancing and has learned a number of international dance forms during her modelling days. Now, the actress is learning kathak. She believes dance is a great form of fitness combined with a strong element of fun. To take her love of dancing one step forward, Nargis decided to learning the Indian classical dance form. She's training in kathak to add poise, grace and strength to her form. The stance and mudras of the dance form are known to be very strong, from both a physical and facial perspective and she is thoroughly enjoying it."

After a hiatus from the silver screen, India’s favourite actress Karisma Kapoor is set to make her stunning return on the big screen in “Dangerous Ishhq,” being released by Reliance Entertainment on 11th May 2012. “Dangerous Ishhq,” a thriller that impacts with mystery, suspense and deception, is directed by Vikram Bhatt, who in 2010 wowed audiences when he pioneered the stereoscopic 3D film genre in India with his hit film Haunted – 3D. Completing the winning pairing of an all-star-cast featuring Karisma Kapoor, Rajniesh Duggall, Jimmy Shergill, Divya Dutta, director Vikram Bhatt, is a musical score by Himesh Reshammiya and the melodic voices such as Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, ensuring a soundtrack that is poignant, memorable and, of course, haunting in all the right places. Karisma Kapoor plays Sanjana Seksena, a Mumbai-based supermodel, with a high-flying lifestyle, full of socialite parties, glamourous photo shoots and jet-setting around the world. Her perfect life is made even more special as she is the much envied girlfriend of super-rich industrialist’s son Rohan Thakral (Rajniesh Duggall). But, in classic suspense thriller format, her picture perfect world comes crashing down when her beloved boyfriend is kidnapped. His ruthless kidnappers demand Rs: 50 Crores, and it becomes a race against time for Sanjana to rescue the love of her life and bring his evil captors to justice in an intriguing game of cat and mouse. As well as the thriller aspect of the film, we also get to see elements of Sanjana and Rohan’s life together with clever supernatural snapshots from the past and the future. Dangerous Ishhq ensures that India’s original leading lady Karisma Kapoor is back!

Big B is fine; requests media not to stress There was a lot of buzz among in the media about superstar Amitabh Bachchan undergoing CT scan. However, the actor clarified that it was just another visit to the doctor and nothing much to worry about. Big B posted on the blog earlier, "Last night...I rose from my desk to get to bed, but excruciating pain, stopped me in my tracks and I found it difficult to walk, to stand, to sit, to lie down. Quite horrendous! I have no answer. But tomorrow there should be one as I prepare for a CT-Scan after devouring a large bottle or bottles of that yellow fluid..." After this, fleet of media gathered outside his home to enquire about the star's health. Surprised Big B asked the reason for the crowd on which he learnt that his tweet had led the media jump to some wrong conclusions.

Paoli Dam wants to go nude! Bengali beauty Paoli Dam, who took Bollywood by storm by posing topless for the poster of her debut Hindi flick ‘Hate Story’ has a sensuous desire. She wishes to pose nude for a painting of hers, something similar to what we have seen Kate Winslet do in film ‘Titanic’. Paoli had recently watched the 3D version of the film and wished if the late MF Husain could immortalize her on the canvas with his fine brush strokes. The bold actress had earlier said, “I am a performer and when I bare all, it is only for my job. As an actor, I have no inhibitions; I just play a character. Posing topless and doing raunchy scenes is nothing new for me.”


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

New HSBC chief keeps focus on emerging markets Dear Financial Voice Reader, As I write, I am preparing for a live online webinar I can giving later this evening. It’s a useful way for me to gain perspective on the markets. And I hate to say it, but I only see positive things, even in the gloom. Details on how to attend for Asian Voice readers are at the bottom of this column. Global equities returned 11.7% in the first quarter and the All-Share index 6.2%. Back to back gains in the S&P500 in the first two months of the year have occurred in 24 of the last 66 years. The average gain during those 24 years was 19.4%, with not a single down year. The most positive region is the UK, with 56% of forecast changes in the last 4 weeks being upgrades. Despite the market rally, equities trade at only a little over 12 times 2012 earnings. Since 1982, there have been seven bear markets in bonds, each involving losses of 15-20% in US 30 year Treasuries. Not one of these bear markets has caused a bear market in equities; two have coincided with flat equity markets (in 1984 and 1994); and five have coincided with big equity gains. The S&P 500 traded at 14.1 times earnings when the market hit its most recent high on March 1. That’s the lowest valuation of any 52-week market high going back to 1989. What of Europe and Spain? As long as the market believes that the Spanish will stick to cutting their deficit and the ECB will stand behind them in case they need to borrow money, then UK and US stock markets will keep rising. It is a game of credibility. At the moment, despite some scares, the Spanish are getting away with it. The major problem with Spain is not the debt, their total debt as a percentage of their GDP is less than that of Germany. Their annual deficit is less than that of the UK. The problem is unemployment and growth means future gaps are likely. It is a cash-flow problem. What caused this? Lack of flexibility – they sacked people instead of cutting salaries. In Germany, UK and US, by comparison salary cuts have been put in effect. These then mean tax revenues still come in at least and there is less social unrest. By not cutting salaries –the country is uncompetitive. If you can’t adapt you die. When I applied to read Philosophy, Politics, Economics at Oxford, my interviewer asked my why Mrs Thatcher raised interest rates to keep the Pound pegged to the Deutsche Mark? And why did we go for such an exchange rate policy? The answer to that question is also the answer to understanding the problem of Greece and Spain and Portugal today. By tracking an exchange rate, it mean we could not devalue the currency every time we became uncompetitive in our exports. We could not just keep taking higher salaries (as Unions would argue) and then when we became costly to export, devalue. A fixed exchange rate forced longer term wage discipline on the country and its companies. It was good to ensure inflation did not become rampant through ever increasing wage demands. The reason we had to force interest rates up, was because we had to show we were credible and serious. In the end none of it worked. The uncompetitive pressure was too great on the exchange rate. In the case of Spain and Greece, they will not become suddenly competitive. But lower salaries is better than no salaries.

IHC acquires UK’s Adelie Food for $350m India Hospitality Corp (IHC) has acquired UK’s Adelie Food Group, a leading player in the convenience food segment, for $350 million in one of the largest takeovers by any Indian company in the food space. Adelie Food produces and supplies food products like salads, quiches and sandwiches for supermarkets, coffee shops, cafes and airlines and is among the largest players in global chilled food market. The group currently employs more than 3,000 people across its seven manufacturing locations.

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Anyone could be forgiven for thinking that taking up the reins of the top job at HSBC Global Asset Management might be a short lived task. Not so, says Sridhar Chandrasekharan, who took over as chief executive from John Flint in January and is the third person in the post in the past five years. “Far from lacking in continuity or commitment to the role it helps to build up a healthy business with experienced people who have worked in different cultures and jobs within the group,” he says in his first press interview. A career HSBC manager, Mr Chandrasekharan worked closely with Mr Flint over the past two years as global head of wholesale at the asset management business in London and was “intimately involved in the strategy.” Before that he worked in a range of roles for the group in emerging markets such as India, Indonesia, the Philippines

Vodafone issues notice to India over tax proposal Vodafone has issued a notice to the Indian government under Bilateral Investment Protection Treaty over retrospective tax proposal announced by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee in the Union Budget 2012-13. The company says the proposal in the budget to tax transactions with retrospective effect amounts to denial of justice. Calling the proposal a breach of obligation under the bilateral investment treaty, it has asked the Indian Government to abandon or amend the retrospective proposal in the Finance Bill. Earlier, India said that the move to amend the Income Tax act retrospectively is not Vodafone-specific. "The clarificatory amendment is retrospective in character and it was not Vodofone-specific. I don't see, in any manner, the investment climate will be hurt," Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma said. "India remains one of the best investment destinations. Returns on investment in India is the highest in the world," he added. UK-based mobile operator Vodafone purchased Hong Kong-based Hutchison's telecom business, which included operations in India, in 2007 for about $11.2 billion. Indian income tax authorities said the deal would attract tax on it and sought Rs 110 billion from Vodafone, which challenged the move.

Sridhar Chandrasekharan

and also in Hong Kong. “The [group] culture is strong and the strategy does not change, just the people,” he adds. On the investment front, he plans to maintain his predecessor’s focus on offering emerging market and active asset allocation strategies. HSBC GAM is a leading investor in emerging markets with more than $122bn of assets under management in such markets, out of a total of $400bn (as of December 31). Mr Chandrasekharan aims “to remain at the forefront” by further developing global crossborder sales. “We are keen to connect developed market investors to emerging markets and emerging markets with each other.”

Last year, for example, the group launched a Brazilian equity fund for Indian investors and plans more such offerings, including an Emerging Markets Dividend Opportunities fund for investors in Turkey. It is also in the final stages of rolling out a rupee bond fund, (the India Fixed Income Fund) for European investors, which Mr Chandrasekharan sees as a “useful long-term cross-border building block into India”, for institutional and retail clients. And he plans to launch a renminbi bond fund for US investors at the end of the month, pending US regulatory approval, following the rollout of such a vehicle for European investors last year. Both funds invest in offshore renminbi-denominated bonds and deposits, and along with the rupee bond fund, will be managed by the Hong Kong-based team, which runs $21bn in single currency fixed income mandates in Asia.

RBI cuts lending rate to prop economy After a gap of three years, Reserve Bank of India governor D Subbarao on Tuesday slashed short term lending rate by 0.50 per cent to 8 per cent, a move that will reduce the cost of home, auto and corporate loans. The reduction in the repo rate at which RBI lends to banks, has been prompted by deceleration in growth and softening of inflation. The cut is aimed at spurring growth to 9 per cent levels, seen before the global financial crisis that began in 2008, Subbarao said while unveiling the annual credit policy. "The reduction in the repo rate is based on an assessment of growth having slowed below its postcrisis trend rate, which, in turn, is contributing to the moderation in core inflation," the governor said. RBI has pegged the GDP growth rate for 2012-13 at 7.3 per cent. It is expected to be 6.9 per cent in 2011-12.

Quality for Community Mayank S. Rawal, FCQI CQP

The Six Sigma Enigma

o what’s it all about S and how can it help your community organi-

zation. Sigma is a form of measurement and is the Greek letter `s’ used to represent standard deviation (in statistics) from mean. The principle behind Six Sigma is to measure how many "defects" there are in a process (e.g. in the context of this article we look at the `process’ of organizing a community event), and later figuring out how to achieve to "zero defects’’. Six Sigma ‘Six standard deviations’ is the distance between the actual process/ performance, and the member’s requirement for the desired performance of the event. The key objective of Six Sigma is to reduce this `distance’ or variation ultimately resulting in cost reduction, less re-work/repetition of tasks, waste elimination, and enhanced efficiency which would lead to increased satisfaction and retention of community members. The six sigma approach looks to improve the community’s process by constantly reviewing and re-tuning the processes using a method known as DMAIC…. Define = Defining the overall scope,

process, timing, and methods required to achieve a successful event, and additionally selecting the correct resources, materials, tools and systems that would be required. Measure = Measuring how well the process of arranging the community event is performing e.g. is everything on schedule, functioning well, and purchasing within budget. Analyse = Analyzing the current performance of the process of organizing your community event against what should be the desired performance. This involves analysis of data and opportunities which could lead to i m p r o v e m e n t . Additionally using the experience and knowledge of individual committee members to ascertain and analyze root causes of possible defects. Root causes could relate to for example people, information, materials, time, equipment. Improve = Initiating ideas and solutions from all members for developing current practices where by the entire organization benefits. This exercise should be carried out after the ‘root cause’ of a possible problem has been ascertained, and the improvement action should focus on eliminating the ‘root cause’.

Attention should also be given on how the entire event could be organized in a different and better way if you were to start from scratch. Control = Frequently monitoring the elements of the process to ensure that there are no potential failures. More importantly to establish a permanent and sustainable solution to each defect/ problem encountered during every step of the planning, preparation and implementation stage of the event. The new solution should form part of the process for organizing future events. Together with the steps above, questions such as the following could be asked to determine the success of your Community event…. Were the members satisfied with the results of the event? Did the final results meet the planned expected result? Did the actual costing of the event remain within budget? Was the planning and preparation of the event completed within the timeframe? With the above in mind, the path to perfection of your Community event requires thorough dedication and commitment by all members of your organization.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012


The Price of a Label

Suresh Vagjiani Sow & Reap A Property Investment Company

This week we secured a commercial property for one of our clients as a long term investment. The property is in High St Sutton, in a very busy and prime area. Nearby you have all the shops you would expect in the prime position such as Pizza Hut, Lloyds bank etc. The property consists of 5 floors, with a retail unit on the ground and basement below, and offices on the top 3 floors. The price has been agreed at £550,000. The interesting cherry on the pie here is there is a strong chance it will come with a tenant for the ground and basement, producing £30,000 p.a. We are trying to get both things agreed simultaneously, so that on the day of completion we will have an income from day one of owning it. The seller is not aware of the possible tenant. This is a good yield even when considering the whole building. We are applying for finance for the client at 75% LTV of purchase price and if all goes to plan the build cost as well, this means he will be putting in £137,500 for the purchase and another £62,500 for the build when permission comes through on an estimated build cost of £250,000. The rest we are hoping to fund at about an absolute maximum of 6%. On the assumption of 6% his cost will be £24,750pa for the purchase alone. This will be covered ideally when the tenants sign for the ground and basement flats. The cost of interest on the build cost will be £11,250pa which will ideally be rolled up meaning it will not have to be paid until the project is completed. There are a number of options once the property has been purchased, one is to keep the upstairs floors in their current configuration and spend the minimal to bring them up to standard which will come to about £60,000. This means we will not need the renovation loan. The other is to go all out and change the whole building structurally. Of course money will need to be spent on planning and refurbishing of the property which is estimated at £250,000. This includes a mansard and a double storey rear extension, if all goes to plan the aim here is to turn the upper floors back into residential use from current office use, ideally allowing 5 flats with an additional floor being provided by a mansard roof.

This w ould enhance the rental by another £5 0-60 ,00 0, w hich prov ides an excellent return. Not to mention the ri se in v alue of the prop erty i tself. Ideally we would have liked a longer completion period. This time period would have been very valuable as it can be used to apply for planning and getting the building project ready to commence. There is no reason why the works cannot even be started prior to comple-

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tion of the property transaction, this would save on the mortgage costs. In this particular purchase as it was being brought from a big group they were inflexible in the way they do things. So we are proceeding in a conventional fashion. This week we also secured a studio flat on the fashionable Portabello Rd, Notting Hill on the 12th April. We purchased this for £235,000, it’s a purpose built block with 7 upper floors, with 100 years left on the lease and a minimal service charge of £700pa. Often especially when purchasing new build properties investors over look the long term ongoing charges. Things like service charges, ground rent and management fees can very easily eat up the left over rent, leaving them with nothing or sometimes they may even need to contribute to the investment. Having a lift also increases the service charge as the maintenance of it needs to be paid by the residents. This building has no lift hence the low service charge and our studio is on the ground floor so the lift is irrelevant for this property and would have been an additional unnecessary contribution if there was one. In fact it’s actually unfair for ground floor flat to contribute to a lift in the building as they derive no use of it, so why should they have to pay? One must be cautious in purchasing a studio in an ex council building due to possible funding issues. As the funding available has shrunk, the criteria for certain properties has become more stringent, studios being one. There are 3 constraining factors in getting finance on this property, one is it’s ex council, the second is the number of storeys and the third is as mentioned, it’s a studio. The first issue is not such a major issue, there are lenders who will lend subject to valuation given the location it should not present a problem. The second will serve as a filter and rule out a few lenders who will not go over four storeys on an ex council block. What they are trying to avoid is bad security, such as the monstrous concrete tower blocks outside of the M25. They do this by developing a set criteria for their loans, in doing this they also miss the opportunities to lend on good security which happens to fall outside of their net. The third issue is the flat being a studio. Many of the lenders who lend require it to be of a certain size, the minimum being 30 Sq m. This studio is 40 Sq m and so it will jump through this hoop. In one sense the whole episode is nonsense, as the idea of not lending on a council property is to avoid getting any bad security on the lenders books. However the majority of ex council flats in prime locations are in private ownership. The fact the building is still “ex council” is only a formality. I know of an ex council building in Gloucester Terrace W2, where the owners of the flat got together and purchased the freehold from the council. Overnight the properties prices almost doubled. The block in question is Gilray House. What’s changed? The occupants? No. The building? No. All that’s changed is simply a label!

We provide a turnkey solution. Contact us now:

Specialists in Central London Property Sourcing

0207 313 4595 Westbourne House, 14-16 Westbourne Grove, London, W2 5RH

Tips of the Week ! Don’t forget the first mantra of property investment: Location, Location, Location. This will attract a quality tenant and ensure future growth. ! Don’t wait to buy property, buy property then wait!



Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Amit Patel has over 15 years experience in the field of Leadership and Human Resource Management

Maria Fernandes

Bring in the money and brains In its immigration strategy the Government has placed emphasis on encouraging investment to the UK and on raising the skill levels even within the investment categories. The regulations that have been rolled out over the last few months have been introduced with this vision in mind. This article charts through the two themes to assess the changes. Visitor: Starting with visitors there is a category of prospective entrepreneur for those who want to come to the UK to secure funding so that they can join, set up or take over, and be actively involved in the running of, a business in the UK. Applicants must be able to show that listed organisations are supporting the application and are considering funding the proposed business. They must be able to show that there is interest in funding from either a registered venture capitalist firm, UK entrepreneurial seed funding competitions or one or more UK government departments. Entrepreneur: A Tier 1 entry clearance or in country switch is available to an individual who has £200,000 or to a person who invests £50k or more into an existing or new UK business, but only if

the funds comes from a reputable source. Third party funding is allowed, provided that the entrepreneur has unrestricted access to those funds. Entrepreneural Team: For the £200k investment, the funds can be shared between an Entrepreneurial team of up to 2 people, and both business partners can qualify for entry clearance or leave to remain in the UK on this basis. Post study workers: With the closure of the category of post study work, those who are in the UK can set up a business with £50,000 in funds. However to prevent the mushrooming of cleaning and taxi businesses there is a requirement that the occupation of the applicant will be at graduate level or above. G r a d u a t e Entrepreneur: The Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) category has opened for graduates who wish to extend their stay in the UK in order to establish one or more businesses in the UK and who have been identified by Higher Education Institutions as having developed world class innovative ideas or entrepreneurial skills. There is a limit of 1000 places available for this category and the award of these places is carried out

by the Institutes. Settlement: The entrepreneur can qualify for settlement (permanent residency) after 5 years. An initial period of 3 years is granted initially and a 2 year on extension whioch must show that they have created 2 jobs for settled workers and the required investment has been completed. Settlement is generally granted after 5 years. However there are fast track rules for settlement: • 3 years (rather than 5) if the entrepreneur creates 10 jobs for settled workers or has achieved an annual turnover of at least £5m for the UK business or 2 years if the turnover is £10m. On the employment front the bar has been raised form NQF level 4 to NQF level 6 and as a result a number of occupations will from the 14th June be removed from the Code of Practice for new applicants and these positions include Hospitality Mangers and Event Managers. Maria Fernandes has been in practice exclusively in immigration for the past 25 years. Fernandes Vaz is based at 87 Wembley Hill Road Wembley in Wembley and can be contacted by telephone on 02087330123, by email on

Air India to get `300 bn for turnaround plan

Giving a major boost to cash- strapped Air India; Indian government announced a turnaround package with Rs 300 billion equity infusion over a nineyear period and induction of 27 Boeing 787 Dreamliners. In another development, the government also approved a proposal to hive off Air India's MRO (maintenance, repair and overhaul) business and its Engineering Services as two wholly-owned subsidiaries, placing about 19,000 of around 28,000 total employees with them. Announcing the decisions of the cabinet committee on economic affairs (CCEA), Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh told reporters that under the approved turnaround plan (TAP) and financial restructuring plan (FRP), the airline would get an upfront equity infusion of Rs 67.50 billion. The airline has been allowed to issue government- guaranteed non-convertible debentures (NCDs) worth Rs 74 billion to its lenders, like financial institutions,

banks, LIC and EPFO. These NCDs would be used to repay part of the airline's close to Rs 212 billion working capital loans. The debt-ridden carrier has outstanding loans and dues worth Rs 675.20 billion, of which Rs 212 billion is working capital loan, Rs 220 billion long-term loan on fleet acquisition, Rs 46 billion vendor dues besides an accumulated loss of Rs 203.20 billion. The CCEA also gave its nod to the induction of 27 Boeing 787 Dreamliners and three Boeing 777-300s on sale and leaseback basis. Under this system, one party sells a property to a buyer who immediately leases it back to the seller. This arrangement allows the initial buyer to make full use of the asset while not having capital tied up in the asset. To

questions about allowing foreign airlines to invest in Indian carriers including Air India, he said a decision is likely to be taken at the next meeting of the Cabinet. Singh said the FRP proposal that additional equity of Rs 302.31 billion be infused between 2012 and 2021 in the airline was also approved by the Cabinet. "But Air India will have to fulfil the tasks set out in the TAP and meet all the milestones" on a regular basis to get these benefits. Asked if Air India would also be allowed to find a suitable foreign airline partner, the Minister said the decision to allow foreign airlines to pick up 49 per cent stake was for all Indian carriers. "Air India will have to find the right suitor ... But the government will still own it," he said. On the FDI issue, Singh further said that investment by foreign carriers would not be through the automatic route and it would have to go through all checks and balances.

Eyes Wide Shut A hundred years ago, on the night of April 14th 1912, the Titanic was descending to its watery grave and taking over 1500 souls with her. It is well documented that there were not enough life boats on the ship. However, there is a lesser known story which is perhaps even more provoking. Each lifeboat had the capacity to carry over 65 people and together, all the lifeboats had a total capacity for 1128 people. Yet there were only 710 survivors. There are stories of how some of the lifeboats still had space for more, yet those on board did not go back to help. It is easy to vilify those who choose not to answer the pleas for help. They would most certainly have seen and heard the people in the water around them and they could have easily saved some of them if they had turned around. But the fact is they decided not to. The only mitigating factors would be that most of them would have been in a heightened

state of shock and when there are only 10 spaces and 50 people trying to get into them, there is a very real risk of the lifeboat being overcrowded and then capsizing. Now rather than ask you as to what you would have done in this situation, I have a more relevant question albeit in a slightly different context. When was the last time you saw a homeless person on the street? If you didn’t stop to offer them something and let’s face it most people don’t, what stopped you from doing so? Was it fear that the person might attack you? Or were you too busy to stop? Perhaps you didn’t have any change in your pocket? Or could it just be that you walked right past them without really giving a second thought about that person? Now let me ask you again, when was the last time you SAW a homeless person? Could it be that we are just as culpable as those people in the half full lifeboats? They were in

Overseas operations of Indian banks under scrutiny The government of India has sought details of all foreign branches and subsidiaries of governmentowned banks at a time when the European economy is not in the best of health and lenders such as State Bank of India are looking to acquire assets abroad. Sources said in a letter sent to bank chiefs on April 11, the finance ministry has sought details regarding the return on assets and capital employed, the net profit and interest margins, the cost per employee, business per employee and net profit of each staff member. In addition, all banks have been asked to submit details of performance of the joint ventures. Over the last few years, several Indian banks have decided to set foot overseas or expand their footprint to tap into the potential created by the presence of several Indian con-

glomerates abroad. As a result, banks such as Punjab National Bank and Union Bank of India, which were missing overseas, now have a presence and are planning to build on it. But governmentowned entities such as State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda and Bank of India have had large international operations for a number of years. Last week, Bloomberg reported that SBI was looking to buy assets from banks in the US and Europe. The move comes at a time when the finance ministry is keen that banks improve the efficiency of capital employed, especially when the government had pumped in over Rs 500 billion over the past few years in helping the lenders shore up their equity base and meet their expansion needs. The fund infusion came despite the government missing its fiscal deficit targets.

By Amit Patel

the midst of a terrible disaster and at such times most people don’t behave rationally or logically. What is our excuse? Its not just homeless people, how many people do we encounter in our daily lives who we could help in some small way, yet don’t? Is it because we don’t actually ‘see’ them at all? Do we live life with our eyes wide shut? The primary role of a Leader is to guide others, to show the way. Yet if we cannot open our own eyes, who can we ever open anyone else’s? Be a leader who see’s, not just one who talks. Amit Patel has over 15 years experience in the field of Personal Development and Human Resource Management. He has delivered speeches on People Management and Development throughout Europe, North America, and Asia. To contact Amit, email

India defers aviation FDI decision

The Indian government deferred the much-awaited decision to let foreign airlines buy stake in local carriers and may take up the issue later, Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh said, disappointing investors and sending share prices of carriers down. Under current rules, foreign airlines are barred from buying stakes in domestic carriers, although foreign investors are allowed to hold a cumulative 49 per cent. Indian airlines, led by embattled Kingfisher Airlines, have long lobbied for the move. However, a brutal Indian market where five of the six big players lose money, as well as tough conditions globally due to high fuel prices and economic weakness, means interest is expected to be muted. Indian carriers are laden with $20 billion in debt and probably lost $2.5 billion in the fiscal year that ended in March, according to Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation, a consultancy.

Chinese, Indian companies keen to form joint ventures Many Chinese firms are in talks with Indian companies, mostly in sectors like food processing, alternative energy, auto components and machinery tools, to form joint ventures and expand their businesses, said Mohammed Saqib, secretary general of India China Economic and Cultural Council, a nonprofit organisation. A 30-member business delegation from China was

in New Delhi to explore business opportunities. The India China Economic and Cultural Council, in cooperation with the China Council for Promotion of International Trade, arranged meetings to facilitate partnerships and collaborations between companies of the two countries. Nearly 80 Indian companies participated in the business-to-business

meeting and some of them were in the process of signing joint venture agreements, said Saqib. "There is a lot of interests among the Chinese firms to come and invest in India. However, at the same time there is a lack of trust. People see everything with suspicion," Saqib said. He said the council was trying to address these issues and bridge the trust deficit.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012


Foreign Exchange Paresh Davdra is the Dealing Director of RationalFX, Currency Specialists.

Worries continue in markets on ongoing rise in Spanish bond yields Worries remained predominant in markets after the rise in Spanish 10-year bond yield above 6%, raising speculations the euro area's fourth-largest economy will soon ask for an international bailout as the yield came close to unsecured levels which forced Greece, Portugal and Ireland for resort to international aids. Despite the labor and financial reforms adopted by the Spanish government and news of ECB intervention to halt the rise in yield, the borrowing cost continued its surge. Spanish minister urged the European Central Bank to intervene to halt the rise in cost of borrowing. Bank of Spain published on its website that Spanish banks' borrowing from the ECB skyrocketed by nearly 50% last month. Domestic banks borrowed 227.6 billion euros in March compared to 152.4 billion euros in February. Spanish banks tapped 29% of the aggregate long-term loans offered to euro-area lenders, including the three-year longterm refinancing operation loans which were launched by the ECB since last year. Also, they

borrowed more than 60% of the loans received by other eurozone banks, according to the data. Asking prices for U.K. homes rose to a record in April as a shortage of property boosted values in London, Rightmove Plc said. Average asking prices in England and Wales gained 2.9 percent in April to 243,737 pounds ($386,000), the operator of Britain’s biggest property website said in a report published today. Prices in the capital increased 2.1 percent to a record 464,944 pounds. Demand for homes in the capital and the south of England

has exceeded supply, helping push up property values. While Britain’s economy has shown signs of recovery in the first quarter, mortgage approvals declined more than forecast in February and a survey by GfK NOP Ltd showed consumer confidence fell in March as the government’s fiscal squeeze hurt

incomes. U.K. economic growth will be 0.4 percent this year, half the official forecast from the government’s fiscal watchdog, and will continue to stall until companies boost investment, Ernst & Young LLP’s ITEM Club said in a report today. London property prices have risen 14.9 percent since the last peak in prices in May 2008, while prices in the rest of the country fell 4.3 percent in the period, Rightmove said. The increase in value across the country is still less than retailprice inflation over the period. The report also showed 5 percent fewer London properties

were put on the market in April than in March. The U.S. looks unlikely to suffer the same sort of swoon this year as the one in 2011: Household, bank and company balance sheets are stronger, and the shocks hitting the economy so far are weaker, with gasoline prices even showing signs of slipping after an early-year rise. Consumer-loan delinquencies fell across the board in the fourth quarter, the first time that’s happened in eight years, according to the American Bankers Association in Washington. Banks have reduced leverage, with financialinstitution debt as share of the economy at its lowest level in a decade. And corporations are flush with cash: The ratio of liquid assets to short-term liabilities is the highest since 1954, based on data compiled by the Federal Reserve. “It feels eerily similar to last year, but fundamentally it’s quite different,” said Joseph LaVorgna, chief U.S. economist for Deutsche Bank Securities in New York. He sees the economy growing 3 percent in the fourth quarter from a year earlier, compared with 1.6 percent in 2011.

Weekly Currencies As of Tuesday 17th April 2012 @ 12.30pm GBP - INR = 82.23 USD - INR = 51.55 EUR - INR = 67.72 GBP - USD = 1.60 GBP - EUR = 1.21 EUR - USD = 1.31 GBP - AED = 4.82 GBP - CAD = 1.59 GBP - NZD = 1.95 GBP - AUD = 1.54 GBP - ZAR = 12.50 GBP - HUF = 360.77 Information provided by RationalFX. None of the information on this page constitutes, nor should be construed as financial advice. The exchange rates used are the commercial foreign exchange rates provided by RationalFX. For a live quote or to find out more about how RationalFX can help you, call us on 0207 220 8181.



Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

48 killed, 65 injured in Afghan terror attack In Focus Kabul: At least 48 people, including 36 terrorists, have been killed and 65 injured in a well-coordinated terror attack launched by heavily-armed Taliban militants in Kabul and three other cities that ended following an 18-hour military operation, authorities said. Interior Minister Bismillah Mohammadi said as many as 37 rebels armed with suicide vests, assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenades began their offensive on Sunday and security forces launched counter offensive during which 36 attackers were killed and one captured. Taliban militants fighting Afghan and NATO-

led forces launched one of their biggest ever attacks in three parts of capital city Kabul, Nangarhar's provincial capital Jalalabad city, Paktia's provincial capital Gerdez and Logar's provincial capital Pule-Alam as part of what they called spring offensive. After the fierce fighting

came to an end, police said Taliban militants have been brought under control and all the attackers have been killed. "In the counter offensive against terrorists in Kabul, eight security personnel were (killed) and 46 sustained injuries. Out of these, five are civilians and the remaining

are security personnel," said Mohammad Zahir, head of Crime Investigation department of Kabul police. Attack on the Afghanistan capital was the first major assault in more than six months. The heavily guarded area of Kabul, where the attacks have been carried out, is frequented by foreigners and is rarely the scene of violence. The last attack on Kabul of this scale was witnessed in September 2011 when heavily armed insurgents took over an unfinished high-rise building and opened fire on the US embassy and NATO headquarters. That attack left 14 Afghans dead.

Taliban storm Pakistan US to press Pakistan to prison, free 384 inmates 'squeeze' Haqqani network Peshawar: Scores of Taliban insurgents, armed with automatic weapons and rocketpropelled grenades, stormed a prison in Pakistan's northwestern town of Bannu and freed around 400 prisoners, including dozens of terrorists. Officials described at least 23 of the escapees as "very dangerous militants" and identified one as Adnan Rashid, who was sentenced to death for an attack on former president Pervez Musharraf. The raid is a major setback for Pakistan's security forces that have gained considerable ground against the Taliban in the tribal region bordering Afghanistan. "Once inside the prison, the attackers first headed towards a barrack where death row prisoners including Adnan Rashid were kept. These people came for him and maybe around 20 other hardcore militants but freed more than 350 other prisoners too," provincial information minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain said. "We will investigate why

Pakistan asks US for India-like N-deal Islamabad: Approving new guidelines for resetting the country's troubled ties with the US, Pakistan's parliament has asked the government to seek from America a civil nuclear deal similar to the one extended to India. A resolution adopted unanimously by a joint sitting of the national assembly and the senate contended that the Indo-US civil nuclear agreement had "significantly altered" the strategic balance in the region. It called for Pakistan to seek from US and other countries a similar facility. The resolution, which contained 14 recommendations made by the Parliamentary Committee on National Security for ties with the US and overall foreign policy, also said that Pakistan's strategic position vis-a-vis India on the Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty "must not be compromised and this principle be kept in view in negotiations." Though most of the proposals were related to Pakistan's ties with US, Nato and ISAF, some focussed on relationship with India.

militants were able to carry out such an attack successfully and what the security officials were doing," he said. Official sources said the insurgents stormed the prison and fired indiscriminately for more than two hours. They said 384 out of 944 prisoners were freed. "The attackers used explosives and hand grenades to blow up the main gates and walls of the prison. They also fired rockets," said Bannu prison superintendent Zahid Khan. He said four police guards and several prisoners were wounded in the gunfire. "The attackers outnumbered the security forces and fled before reinforcements came." Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack. "We attacked the Bannu prison and got our special members freed," a news agency quoted Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan as saying. "In a couple of days when all of them have reached their designated places, we will issue details about them."

Washington/Islamabad: The United States has said that it would continue to press Islamabad to "squeeze" the alQaida linked Haqqani network, as Afghanistan blamed the Pakistan-based group for the latest brazen attacks in Kabul. Declaring "there were indications of Haqqani involvement" in the weekend attacks in the Afghan capital, secretary of state Hillary Clinton said that she had pressed Pakistan to "squeeze" the Haqqani network when she visited Islamabad last October. "I will continue to make that point, and press it hard," Clinton was quoted by Fox News as telling reporters in the Brazilian capital Brasilia, where she described the Pakistan-based outfit as a "determined foe". Afghan interior minister Bismillah Mohammadi had told newsmen in Kabul that one of the militants arrested during the latest attacks on the Afghan capital and three other cities had told the

Jallaluddin Haqqani

authorities that al-Qaedalinked Haqqani network was behind the assaults. Hillary said she had spoken to her Pakistani counterpart Hina Rabbani Khar to urge her for a commitment to work closely for peace and stability in Afghanistan and also discussed the recent terrorist attacks in Kabul. The telephonic talks between Clinton and Khar come a day ahead of a crucial meeting of Pakistan's top civilian and military leadership, who are expected to take a final decision on re-opening of logistic supply lines to Nato troops in Afghanistan.

Manmohan must put foot down on Siachen: Pakistan daily

Islamabad: A settlement on Siachen, the world's highest battleground, will have a positive effect on the overall relationship between Pakistan and India, said a leading daily that exhorted the Manmohan Singh government to "put its foot down and end the conflict". An editorial in the Dawn on Tuesday said there is little reason why a Pakistani tragedy in Siachen should prompt the Indian government to seek a settlement on the icy heights - "unless wiser counsel prevails". An avalanche, which hit a camp of the Pakistan Army April 7 in Siachen, buried 139 Pakistani soldiers and civilians. The daily said that a comprehensive settlement was pledged in the 1989 joint statement signed by the then Pakistani and Indian defence secretaries as a result of backchannel diplomacy when Benazir Bhutto and Rajiv Gandhi were prime ministers.

Manmohan Singh

"The agreement, which a senior Pakistan Foreign Office official recently asked India to honour, has remained a piece of paper for more than two decades. "It is unlikely to be translated into an international treaty because the security establishments of both countries have frustrated attempts by their civilian leaderships to end the conflict on the world's highest battlefield," it said. Referring to India's posi-

tion, the editorial said: "...Indian generals think their troops are in a strategically advantageous position. A pullback to the 1984 positions, before fighting began in Siachen, would in their opinion deprive the Indian army of the operational advantage it enjoys at present. If there is a pullback, the Indian side insists, the existing positions must be marked on maps and ground". In contrast, Pakistan's position is to "let the two sides withdraw to the 1984 positions and pledge to turn the glacier into a demilitarised zone". "Essentially, it is for the Manmohan Singh government to put its foot down and end a conflict in which more men have died from harsh climatic conditions than in actual combat. A Siachen settlement will have a positive effect on the overall relationship between Pakistan and India and quicken the pace of normalisation," it added.

18 dead in Afghan suicide bombings

Kabul: Eighteen people killed and 45 injured in two separate Taliban attacks in Afghanistan. In Herat province, 14 people, including police and civilians were killed, and 40 were injured when a pick-up with two people inside was blown up near the police and government headquarters in Guzara, as people gathered outside the building to see government officials. In the second attack in Helmand, four police officers were killed and five civilians were injured, when three suicide bombers attacked the police headquarters in Musa Qala, Al Jazeera said. Two bombers blew themselves up inside the building, while a third bomber was shot dead before his vest could be detonated. The Taliban claimed responsibility for both the attacks.

Gilani's son 'wanted for alleged role in drug quota scandal' Islamabad: Son of Pakistan Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, Ali Musa, has reportedly left for South Africa before his name could be placed on the Exit Control List (ECL) for his alleged role in a Rs 7 billion drug quota scandal. The Pakistan Supreme Court issued a notice to Ali Musa in a case relating to alleged irregularities in the import of a large quantity of chemical Ephedrine. The Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) had requested the interior ministry to add his name on the ECL. But Ali Musa who was recently elected to the National Assembly, left for South Africa and is expected to travel to the UK too. According to his personal secretary, it is a scheduled visit and Ali Musa is likely to return on May 2, 2012. Meanwhile, sources in the interior ministry as well the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) confirmed that Ali Musa had not been placed on the ECL.

Karzai may call early elections Kabul: President Hamid Karzai said he was considering calling presidential elections a year early to lessen the strain that could be caused by foreign combat troops leaving Afghanistan at the same time as the nation is holding a national ballot. The next presidential elections are scheduled for 2014 and the majority of NATO combat forces will leave Afghanistan by the end of that same year. At that time, Mr Karzai will be at the end of his second five-year term and the constitution bars him from running for a third term. “I have been talking about this for a few months now,” Mr Karzai said. “With all the changes that are taking place with the complete return of international forces to their homes from Afghanistan and the holding of the presidential election at the same time whether that will be an agenda that we can handle at the same time.” Mr Karzai said no final decision has been made.

Pak releases 26 Indian fishermen Islamabad: Pakistan on Thursday last released 26 Indian fishermen, including a cancer patient, from a jail in Karachi. After their release from Malir Jail, the fishermen said the authorities treated them well and they were happy to return to their homes, the Online news agency reported. Samat Lakshman Bambhaniya, the fisherman suffering from cancer, thanked Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari for issuing orders for his release. He said he had entered Pakistani waters by mistake as he was unaware of the limits. Bambhaniya had been lodged in the Karachi jail for over a year now.

Pak to deport Osama’s family Islamabad: Pakistan will deport the widows and children of former al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden to Saudi Arabia soon after their jail sentence for illegal residency ends. The three women and two children were detained by Pakistani security forces after a secret US special forces raid killed bin Laden in the Pakistani town of Abbottabad in May last year. Earlier this month a Pakistani court sentenced the women to 45 days in prison for illegally staying in the country. It ordered their deportation after the prison term which began on March 3 when they were formally arrested. "They are likely to be deported to Saudi Arabia on April 18, as their sentence ends on April 17," the family's lawyer, Aamir Khalil said.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012


In Focus

Suspend sanctions against Myanmar: Cameron

South Africa president to wed for 6th time

Yangon: British Prime Minister David Cameron has said economic sanctions against Myanmar (formerly Burma) should be suspended in recognition of the changes taking place in the country. The prime minister spoke after a meeting with prodemocracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi in Yangon. Suu Kyi welcomed his call and said the suspension of sanctions would "strengthen the hand of the reformers." Mr Cameron is the first Western leader to visit Myanmar since her success in a series of parliamentary by-elections. He is also the first UK Prime minister ever to visit

Johannesburg: South African president Jacob Zuma, who turned 70 last week, will marry for the sixth time next weekend when he takes his long-time fiancee, Bongi Ngema, as his fourth current wife. Polygamy forms part of Zulu culture and is legal in South Africa, and Zuma, a Zulu traditionalist, has 21 children. "President Jacob Zuma will be formalizing his relationship with his fiancee by having a private traditional ceremony this coming weekend," said Zuma's spokesman, Mac Maharaj. The ceremony will take place in Nkandla in KwaZulu Natal province, Maharaj said. Zuma is also married to Sizakele Zuma, Nompumelelo Ntuli-Zuma and Tobeka Madiba-Zuma. He was married to home affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, and to Kate Mantsho-Zuma who committed suicide.

China blocks all foreign websites London: China's internet censorship system has blocked all foreign websites. Observers speculated that the system could be being upgraded to further tighten the regime's control over foreign sites. Users in Beijing, Shanghai and elsewhere in China reported that they were unable to access any foreign sites at all. China had already restricted access to many foreign sites including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube citing a need to maintain social stability. The change in the service came as China faced renewed attack from Western 'hacktivists' for its restrictive Internet policies and human rights violations. Hacker group said it intends to launch a full-scale attack against the censorship.

Student slams China exams, becomes hero Beijing: A 'rebellious' student who made an impassioned speech attacking China's exam-oriented education system that stifles creativity has become an instant national hero in the country, winning platitudes from official and microblog media. Jiang Chengbo , a student from an east China province, drew wild applause at a meeting attended by 3,000-strong audience at the school. Impressed by the impact his speech made a news agency carried a feature, saying that the speech propelled him into national spotlight.

Taxes and red tape drive wealthy from Britain London: Half a million of Britain's wealthiest people could emigrate over the next two years amid concerns over infrastructure, red tape and taxes, a survey has found. Crime and anti-social behaviour are the most popular reasons given for contemplating leaving the country. Almost 20 per cent of people with fortunes of £250,000 or more said they were considering moving abroad. The poll, by Lloyds TSB International Wealth, showed an increase in the number of people contemplating leaving the country, up by five points from a year ago. More than 40 per cent of wealthy Britons think the UK offers a worse quality of life than other developed countries and is generally more stressful than life overseas.

US court to hear 1984 antiSikh riots case on May 1 Washington: A US court is set to hear arguments in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots case on May 1 even as Congress party opposed the entry of a default judgment against it for its alleged role in the riots. Filing the Congress plea before Judge Robert W Sweet of the US federal court, lawyers from "Jones Day" law firm said the case "involves significant issues of public international law that should not be decided by a default judgment." Since all events relating to November 1984 riots took place in India, all the individuals and property purportedly harmed by the Congress was located in India, said the plea filed in response to a petition filed by Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), a New York based community organisation.

the country. Earlier, Mr Cameron met President Thein Sein and said the government had to demonstrate that moves to democracy were "irreversible". Myanmar was ruled for almost half a century by a

military junta that stifled almost all dissent and wielded absolute power. The EU, US and other nations imposed sanctions. The first general election in 20 years was held in 2010. The installation of a military-backed, nominally civilian government in March 2011 and a series of reforms since - including the release of hundreds of political prisoners - have led to speculation that decades of international isolation could be coming to an end. Speaking at a joint press conference with Suu Kyi, Mr Cameron said the arms

embargo in place against Mayanmar should remain in place, but it was right to suspend - not lift - the remaining sanctions. They include an assets freeze imposed on nearly 500 people and restrictions on key industries such as mining and timber. "[Myanmar] shouldn't be as poor as it is. It shouldn't have suffered under dictatorship for as long as it has, and things don't have to be that way," Mr Cameron said. "I do think it is important to send a signal that we want to help see the changes that can bring the growth of freedom of human rights and democracy in your country."

Stephen Lawrence trust sues British businessman killed for council bosses for alleged racism threat to expose Bo’s wife

London: The chairman of the Stephen Lawrence Trust is suing Waltham Forest Council, East London, for £200,000 for racial discrimination after Mr Symon Tandooran-Sentain, a black officer, lost his job while preparing for the Olympics. Mr Tandooran-Sentain, 45, claims he was at the time one of only four black chief officers out of 53 at the council, and that all lost their jobs. Symon Tandooran-Sentain claims there is a "tainted glass ceiling" blocking black and Asian people from the highest echelons of local government. Last year his £86,000-ayear position as Head of

Symon TandooranSentain

Olympics at Waltham Forest Council was abolished during a restructuring. He is suing the council for unfair dismissal, race discrimination and victimisation at East London Employment Tribunal. He alleges the council runs a "white executive network" and that bias in awarding the most senior posts shows the council has failed to learn the lessons of "institutional racism" outlined in the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry report.

Truce in tatters as Syrian forces shell rebel hub

Beirut: Syrian government forces shelled the city of Homs, resident opposition activists and a rights activist said, as a six-person advance party of UN observers is due to arrive in Syria to monitor a ceasefire meant to start some days ago. British foreign secretary William Hague said that the 30 unarmed observers who have been sanctioned to enter Syria by a unanimous vote at the Security Council was insufficient and had to be “beefed up.” “This number of people cannot possibly effectively monitor what is happening in the whole country,” he said in an interview, adding that 30 monitors could, however, quickly visit areas where they are reports of ceasefire breaches. “The plan will be for a much larger (team), more in the hundreds, of monitors to follow them provided the (ceasefire) plan is being implemented by all concerned,” he said. But four days after a ceasefire was meant to come into effect, violence persists. “Early this morning we saw a helicopter and a spotter plane fly overhead. Ten minutes later, there was heavy shelling,” said Walid al-Fares, an activist living in Khalidiya. Activist video footage, reportedly from Khalidiya, shows an explosion shortly after the sound of a missile flying through the air. Rami Abdelrahman, head of Britishbased Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said shells were being fired at a rate of one a minute. He said there had also been overnight clashes in rural Aleppo. Syria blames the violence on “terrorists” seeking to topple president Bashar al-Assad and has repeatedly denied journalists access to the country, making it impossible to independently verify the reports.

Chpngqing (China): The British businessman whose murder has sparked political upheaval in China was poisoned after he threatened to expose a plan by a Chinese leader's wife to move money abroad, two sources with knowledge of the police investigation said. It was the first time a specific motive has been revealed for Neil Heywood's murder in November 2011, a death which ended Chinese leader Bo Xilai's hopes of emerging as a top leader and threw off balance the Communist Party's looming leadership succession. Bo's wife, Gu Kailai,

asked Heywood to move a large sum of money abroad, and she became outraged when he demanded a larger cut than she had expected due to the transaction's size. She accused him of being greedy and hatched a plan to kill him after he said he could expose her dealings, one of the sources said, summarizing the police case. Gu is in police custody on suspicion of committing or arranging Heywood's murder, though no details of the motive or the crime have been publicly released, other than a general comment from Chinese state media that he was killed.

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Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Non-UPA CMs join hands to fight Centre

The battle lines for states versus Centre face-off got sharply drawn on Monday when non-UPA chief ministers - including Odisha’s Naveen Patnaik, Gujarat’s Narendra Modi and Tamil Nadu’s J Jayalalithaa - got together for an unscheduled meeting in Delhi to work out a common line on contentious issues. While this was the main purpose of the meeting, there was talk of this coordination developing into a common strategy for the coming presidential election. On Centre-state issues, the three chief ministers are likely to find common grounds with Bihar’s Nitish Kumar, West Bengal’s Mamata Banerjee and Punjab’s Parkash

Singh Badal. These CMs launched a blistering attack on the Congress-led UPA government at a meeting on internal security, accusing the Centre of meddling in states’ affairs by seeking to arm the National CounterTerrorism Centre (NCTC) with police powers and proposing intrusive changes in the Border Security Force Act. Ironically, the attack came on a day when both Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and home minister P Chidambaram sought to avoid stepping on corns by emphasizing and accepting the need for the Centre to work with the states. But the diplomatic approach did not prevent non-UPA CMs from hit-

ting out at the Centre. Modi, Patnaik and Jayalalitha agreed to continue their cooperation on federal issues and this could build up into a shared strategy on a presidential nominee although much will depend on Congress’s choice for Rashtrapatil Bhawan. The Congress is aware that it will need the support of parties like the SP, BSP and the Trinamool and could opt for a nominee who is hard to oppose. Opposing the UPA over federal issues provides a ground for regional parties like Patnaik’s BJD to interact with the BJP, while state satraps like Jayalalitha, Mamata and Nitish Kumar are in touch over the past few months.

King of Good Times turns to psychic as debts hit $3bn

In divine light By Rajen Vakil

Badrikashram - Inner Steadiness

The Pandavas just entered that space in the Himalayas known as Gandhamadana. As they entered the area, a terrible storm started brewing. Very fast and dangerous winds started blowing and created a storm of dust and rubble. The dust, along with leaves, covered the air around the sky making it impossible to see anything. The group could not see or talk to each other. The wind was uprooting one tree after another and each of the Pandavas, along with members of the group, took shelter in different places. Bhima protected Draupadi. After some time, the winds started calming and it started raining pellets of ice, accompanied by thunder and lightning, making a deafening roar. The water in the rivers started rising and taking the uprooted trees with them, small streams turned into over-flowing rivers. Then, all of a sudden, everything became silent again and the Pandavas continued their journey through Gandhamadana, hoping to reach Badrikashram before dusk. After a while, Draupadi sat down totally exhausted and then she fainted. All the four brothers ran to help her. Nakula and Sahdeva began rubbing her feet and the others tried to

The man hailed in India as King of the Good Times is seeking divine intervention to stave off the collapse of his debtridden business empire. Vijay Mallya, the playboy owner of Kingfisher Airlines and Whyte & Mackay whisky, as well as the Force India Formula One team, has hired one of India’s most renowned Hindu astrologers to make his

Ashtamangala Prasnam, based on the ritual atonements of an individual for past misdeeds. He is understood to have conducted an Ashtamangala ritual at Dr Mallya’s seafront Vijay Mallya Mumbai mansion within the past month. troubles disappear. The complex ceremony Parappanangadi can take as long as three Unnikrishna Panicker, a days and involves offerings psychic from the southern to gods, ritual bathing and Indian state of Kerala, spethe wearing of special cialises in an elaborate robes. Hindu ceremony known as

Don’t marry into CPM families, TMC cadres told

Stay away from my parks and memorials, Mayawati warns Akhilesh

If Trinamool Congress has its way, there will be no marriages between CPM cadres and the ruling party members as well as their families in Bengal. This is the officially laid down party policy adopted to take on the CPM before the panchayat elections in 2013. Food and supplies minister Jyotipriya Mullick has asked partymen not to build any personal relationships with CPM cadres, saying this will weaken the resolve of the party workers to fight the CPM politically. “I am not talking of any violence. I requested our workers to boycott the CPM personally. I told my party workers not to mingle with CPM cadre, not to chat with them at tea stalls or attend social gatherings organized by them,” Mullick said.

The birth aniversary of Baba Saheb Bhim Rao Ambedkar was marked by a war of words between UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati. Addressing party workers and followers at Ambedkar Park, Lucknow, Mayawati said: "...Any attempt to construct anything on parks and memorials could lead to law and order problems not only in the state but also in the country." She asked the SP government to respect dalit icons and their parks otherwise they would put the country in trouble. "This may also create problems for the new government," she said warning her opponent. This was the first occasion after UP polls that Mayawati met her supporters at a public meeting. In a rather combative mood, Mayawti referred to certain newspaper reports stating that the SP government would open a medical college or a hospital in certain parks. Mayawati said that SP government should take lessons from her gov-

Akhilesh Yadav and Mayawati

ernment. "We never tried to deface or disturb memorials, museums and parks named after their icons. In fact we respected their sentiments and I hope the new government would reciprocate the same," she said. Meanwhile, addressing reporters in Delhi, CM Akhilesh Yadav said that the people of UP have punished Mayawati and her party for wasting funds on park and memorials. "The people of UP have punished those who spent money on bricks and mortar to make memorials and parks," said Akhilesh. He

added that it was not wrong to think of using precious land for public welfare. "I have assured that my government will not touch parks and memorials. But more than 3,000 acres of precious land can definitely be used for hospitals for children and women," he said. In response to the warning given by BSP chief, Akhilesh said: "She is sitting in the opposition and could say anything. But her words would have been more meaning if they were uttered in the Vidhan Sabha."

wake her up. Bhima went to Yudhisthira and said to him, “Even though I am capable of carrying all of you let me call my son, Ghatotkacha. He is a rakshasa and can move at very great speed, he has great strength and will be able to carry everyone.” Yudhisthira agreed and so Bhima meditated upon his son who appeared immediately in front of them, with folded hands. Ghatotkacha immediately lifted Yudhisthira, Nakula, Sahdeva and Draupadi. He called some more of his rakshasa followers who lifted the other rishis and Brahmins alongside. The group then moved very fast through the mountains and forests, which were filled with wonderful sights and different animals. They saw the mountain called Kailasa in the distance and also passed the ashram of the two ancient rishis, Nara and Narayan, who had been reborn as Arjuna and Krishna. Then in the distance they saw a Badri tree (Ber or jujube).

It was huge with its branches spread out in all directions and was filled with divine fruit. The group alighted from the shoulders of the rakshasas and saw the wonderful ashram named after the mighty tree. It was filled with light and still untouched by the rays of the sun. Just at the sight of it all hunger, all thirst and weariness vanished. All of them felt as if they had been lifted out of all the pain and suffering they had ever seen. It was filled with Brahmins chanting slokas which pervaded the air and destroyed all the negative thoughts in their minds. It would not have been possible to enter the ashram if anyone held even a trace of negativity. The Pandavas had crossed the most difficult part of their journey. The word Badri means steady. To reach the inner space of steadiness, one has to pass through great storms of emotional upheaval. One then uses the energies transformed, or the Rakshasas, to reach one’s goal. Dharna Shakti or the power of visualisation, or Ghatotkacha, is what takes us to the highest peaks of inner consciousness.

All past articles on the Mahabharata can be accessed from or from

Maharashtrian Puneri Daal

Maharashtrian Puneri dal improves total protein quality of the meal. ... This tangy, traditional and wholesome food option can be combined with rice or preferably Puran-Poli. Ingredients: 1 cup split Yellow Lentil (Toor dal), 4 tblsp fresh grated Coconut (Nariyal), 1 tsp Turmeric Powder (Haldi), 1 tsp Cayenne Powder, 2 tsp Goda Masala, 2 tsp grated Jaggery, 1 tsp Black Mustard seeds (Rai/Sarson), Salt (Namak), 1 tsp Cumin Seed (Jeera) A pinch of Asafoetida (Hing), Few Curry Leaves (Kari Patta), 2 tblsp chopped Coriander Leaves (Dhania Patta), 1 tblsp Oil. Directions: Clean, wash and drain the lentils. Simmer the lentils in double their quantity of water until soft. Add all the spices, coconut, jaggery and salt. Simmer for a minute and remove from

the heat. Heat oil in separate pan and add mustard seeds. Add cumin seeds, asafetida and curry leaves. Stir for few seconds. Pour this over the cooked lentil, mix well. Serve hot. Health Benefits: Lentils are rich in flavours, a class of antioxidants with antioxidant properties. Studies have proved that regular consumption of lentils can reduce the risk of breast cancer. Lentils prove to be significant for a healthy heart as they prevent heart coronary problems. Apart from providing low burning complex carbohydrates, lentils increase energy levels by replenishing iron stores.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

In Focus Don't cross 'Lakshman Rekha' SC urged While protecting the rights of an accused to a free and fair trial not prejudiced by media reporting, the Supreme Court should not cross the 'Lakshman Rekha' of reasonable restrictions provided in the constitution, a senior counsel contended. An apex court constitution bench of Chief Justice S.H. Kapadia, Justice D.K. Jain, Justice S.S. Nijjar, Justice R.P. Desai and Justice J.S. Khehar was told by senior counsel Anil Divan that the restriction on free speech and expression could only be reasonable and confined to those specified under Article 19(2). "This is a Lakshman Rekha. You can't go beyond Article 19(2) to protect the (right guaranteed under) Article 21. This would amount to undoing the 60 years of jurisprudence done by the Supreme Court," said Divan, who appeared for the newspaper.

'Greenest ever' London Olympics claims trashed Human rights groups have dismissed London Olympic chief Sebastian Coe's claims that the upcoming sport event 'will be the greenest ever Games' as 'corporate spin', and will stage a protest against the Olympic committee for picking up sponsors responsible for the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy, and causing other environmental damage. Companies such as BP, Rio Tinto and Dow Chemical Company collectively face allegations of causing environmental degradation, damaging public health and failing to clean

Amdavadi gets Rear Admirable rank of US Vivek Soni is an executive from a pharma major - who hardly fits the profile of a drudgery-deadened corporate figure - has been hailed as an 'Iron Butt'. This is a title that biking enthusiasts would kill to earn in their lifetime. Vivek Soni had submitted the requisite details of his ride between Bangalore and Delhi to the Iron Butt Association of the US which has more than 50,000 members. He was amazed when he received the recognition and a certificate a few weeks ago. Soni completed the ride, on his Yamaha R15, spanning 2,530 km in less than 36 hours. That made him qualify in two categories of the 'Iron Butt Ride' - 1,609 km and 1,500 km. Soni says he is among the few Indians on the Iron Butt website to have clocked 2,530 km.

Chandy inducts two new ministers Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy added two more ministers to his cabinet, taking the total strength to 21, and shuffled some key portfolios, including home. The new home minister is T. Radhakrishnan, who previously held revenue, Chandy told reporters after a cabinet meeting. Adoor Prakash, who was health minister, will now look after revenue, V.S. Sivakumar moves from transport to health and Aryadan Mohammed will hold additional charge of transport. The two new ministers are M. Ali, 60, of the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML), and Anup Jacob, 34, who became a legislator last month stepping into the shoes of his father, Kerala Congress-Jacob's T.M. Jacob. The two first-time ministers were administered the oath of office by Karnataka Governor H.R. Bhardwaj, who is standing in as Kerala governor. Anup's mother, Daisy Jacob, a senior bank official, was seen trying to control her tears as her son was sworn in.

up their pollution. The companies will face criticism from international grassroots organisations as part of their 'Greenwash Gold 2012' campaign in London. Meredith Alexander, the former Olympics star who resigned from the Commission for a Sustainable London over sponsorship controversies, will chair a meeting of activists

from India, the United States, Mongolia and Canada. Meanwhile, S t e p h e n Lawrence trust has sued Wa l t h a m Forest Council for for racial discrimination after Mr symon TandooranSentain, a black officer, lost his job while preparing for the Olympics. Mr Tandooran-Sentain, 45, claims he was at the time one of only four black chief officers

out of 53 at the council, and that all lost their jobs. Symon Tandooran-Sentain claims there is a "tainted glass ceiling" blocking black and Asian people from the highest echelons of local government. He said that last year his £86,000-a-year position as Head of Olympics at Waltham Forest Council was abolished during a restructuring. He said that his dismissal was unfair and race discrimination. He alleges the council runs a "white executive network" and that bias in awarding the most senior posts to blacks.


Baby Afreen passes away The three-month-old baby, Afreen, who was battered by her father for being born a girl, passed away in hospital of Bangalore where she was being treated. Doctors said that the infant had a cardiac arrest. They tried cardiac resuscitation to revive the baby but, after several futile attempts, the baby was finally declared dead. Earlier the infant’s condition had deteriorated after she slipped into a semi-comatose state. She had two more convulsions. The medical superintendent informed that the baby had a quickened rate of respiration of 30-40 per minute (the normal rate is 20-25 per minute).


12th Asian Achievers Awards !"#!

14th September 2012



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Please tick the appropriate category Sports Personality of the Year............................................

Woman of the Year ................................................................

Awarded for excellence in sports.

The award will recognise and honour a woman who has made a significant mark in any chosen field.

Business Person of the Year ..............................................

Awarded to a business person who is a success in every sense of the word and can demonstrate a genuine passion for social issues.

Young Entrepreneur of the Year ......................................

Professional of the Year ......................................................

Uniformed and Civil Services ............................................

Awarded to an young entrepreneur (less than 35 years) with a proven track record of operating a successful business enterprise.

Professionals in the field of medicine, law, education, banking, finance and others, who have scaled the heights of their chosen profession.

For outstanding achievements in uniformed and civil services or contribution to the community through any of the above services.

Achievement in Community Service................................

Awarded to those who have acclaimed popularity internationally for his/her contribution in any particular sector and is recognised for their timeless philanthropic activities.

In recognition for an individuals service to community.

Achievement in Media, Arts and Culture ....................

Someone who has made a mark in media including print and broadcast media; cinema, art and culture.

Award for Entertainment ....................................................

For outstanding performance by Asians in the field of Dance and Music.

International Personality of the Year ............................

Lifetime Achievement Award ............................................

To honour those individuals, who during their lifetime, have made immense contributions in any given field. This remarkable individual can be marked as an example for the younger generation.

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NOMINATION AND SELECTION PROCESS " This is a unique event where readers nominate and an independent panel of judges comprising of eminent personalities selects the winner. "# Judges’ decision is final. ABPL Group will not entertain any dialogue with members of the public regarding the judging process. "#In order to ensure a high degree of transparency and fairness, the management and members of the staff of Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar will play no role in the nomination or judging process. " You may use an additional sheet if the space provided is insufficient. "#The winners will be announced at the AAA Awards ceremony in 14th September, 2012. "#Asian Voice, Gujarat Samachar will publish the names of the short listed candidates and winners after the event. The winners names will also appear in our e-edition "#You can nominate yourself if you wish to. "##Nominations and entries must follow the prescribed format. "#All nomination forms must reach our offices on or before 12th July, 2012








Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Shah Rukh's detention: US apologises, India talks tough In Focus The US customs and border protection authorities have expressed "profound" apologies for the Shah Rukh Khan detention incident. However, taking the incident seriously, India’s external affairs minister SM Krishna has asked the Indian ambassador to US, Nirupama Rao, to take up the matter with the authorities. Reacting strongly to the detention, Krishna said it has become a policy of detention and apology by the US which cannot continue. Earlier, Shah Rukh Khan was detained at a New York airport for over two hours by immigration officials after arriving from India in a private plane with Nita Ambani, to address students at Yale University. While Nita, wife of Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani, and the rest of their group were cleared immediately, Khan was stopped and was given immigration clearance only after about two hours.

46-year-old Khan was to address a press conference at 2pm and deliver his lecture at 4pm at the Yale University. However, he arrived for the press meet three hours behind schedule and his hour-long lecture started at about 6pm."Whenever I start feeling too arrogant about myself, I always take a trip to America. The immigration guys kicked the star out of stardom," Khan said with some sarcasm addressing the students at the University.

He added that he always has his "small victories" even in such circumstances. "They (immigration officials) always ask me how tall I am and I always lie and say 5 feet 10 inches. Next time I am going to get more adventurous. (If they ask me) What colour are you, I am going to say white," Khan said. Earlier, when informed about Khan being held up at the White Plains airport in New York, Yale University officials "contacted and spoke with officials at the Department of Homeland Security and Department of US Immigration and Customs in Washington," the sources said. They added that Khan was "very very upset" at the episode and it "took time for the university officials to make him comfortable again." The Rt. Hon Keith Vaz, the Chairman of the UK's influential Home Affairs Committee has written to his

opposite number in the United States Congress urging better international cooperation to avoid any further embarrassing incidents such as the detention on Friday for two hours of Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan. Mr Vaz has received similar complaints in the past of British Indians of the highest integrity arriving in the USA who have been subjected to similar treatment. Vaz said "Every country has the right to protect its border. The USA , the UK and India are allies in the fight against terrorism and crime. There are ample examples of the three countries working together but incidents such as the one we have seen on Friday with Shah Rukh Khan mirror other occasions when prominent people of Indian origin are subjected to lengthy questioning after a very long flight. The US authorities were right to issue a quick apology.

BJP wins, Congress drubbed in Delhi civic polls Capitalising on issues of corruption and price rise, BJP on Tuesday trumped Congress to retain its hold in the Delhi municipal polls winning North and East Corporations and is set to capture South where it has emerged as the single-largest group. The BJP victory came as a shock to chief minister Sheila Dikshit of the Congress who has been ruling the capital for the last nearly 14 years uninterruptedly and trifurcated the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) in a bid to weaken the saffron party's hold.

But the victory in the elections to the newly-created three municipal bodies was not as comprehensive in 2007 as BJP won only 138 out of 272 wards losing 26 seats from its earlier tally of 164 in 2007. Congress tally went up from 64 to 78 seats. BJP captured North and East Corporations with a clear majority while it got 44, nine short of majority in the 104-member House in South Corporation. The party may hope to muster a majority with help from independents who have bagged 14 wards.

In North Delhi Corporation, BJP romped home with 59 seats in the 104-member strong body while Congress lagged behind at 29. BSP won seven seats while RLD four, LJP one and independents four. At the end of counting of votes, South Delhi Corporation remained a hung house with BJP emerging victorious in 44 wards while Congress bagged 30 seats. BSP won five, NCP five, INLD three, JD(U) one, RLD one besides 14 independents.

But the real shocker for Congress came in its stronghold East Delhi Corporation where BJP came up with an impressive victory, winning 35 out of 64 wards. Congress was behind with 19 seats, INLD six, SP one and independents three. Congress was quick to downplay the defeat saying MCD polls should only be seen as civic polls while BJP attributed its victory to a country-wide wave against Congress which failed to contain price rise and rampant corruption.

Asian companies shine in Britain Continued from page 1 Under managing director Majid Hussain, the Blackburn firm’s profits have grown 76% a year, from £988,000 in 2008 to £5.4m in 2011. Thirty ninth on the list is 99p Stores, discount dealer, which is expanding internationally with its first shop in Dublin. Founded by chief executive Nadir Lalani in 2001, this retailer runs discount stores that sell items from toothpaste to padlocks for 99p. The business has tripled in size over the past three years and now has 176 stores in Britain. It opened its first overseas shop in Dublin in September, called !uro 50 Stores. Barclays Ventures holds a 25% stake following two investments, in 2004 and 2006, totalling £4m. Economies of scale since it opened a 4m sq ft warehouse in 2010 have helped profits to grow 72% a year, from £1.4m in 2008 to £7.2m in 2011. 53rd on the list is OneE Tax, tax planning specialist. Its latest tax solution cost £1m to create, most of which went on barristers' fees, Former Deloitte employee Sufyan Ismail founded this Bolton company in 2006. Its products enable clients to cut tax bills legitimately by investing in commercial enterprises such as infrastructure projects or small entrepreneurial firms. Clients

Moni Varma

Nadir Lalani

Sufyan Ismail

come mainly through accountancy firms that do not possess the financial means or incentive to create the products themselves but which receive a commission from OneE Tax for the sale. Developing these marketing channels has encouraged profit growth at the company of 60% a year, from an annualised £1.8m in 2007 to an annualised £7.6m in 2010. 58th on the list is Veetee Rice, rice wholesaler and distributor. The Kent firm imports rice from around the world, including India, Pakistan, Thailand and America and sells it to all big UK supermarkets. Founded by Moni Varma in 1987, the firm attributes its success to refocusing the business in 2007 and it now looks to continue growth by investment in IT. Veetee Rice has lifted profits by 57% a year, from £1.3m in 2007 to £5m in 2010. Varma also owns sister company Veetee Foods. 62nd on the list is B&M

Retail discount retailer. It has recently acquired 11 outlets from the collapsed DIY chain Focus. Other than Asians companies the private company that was topping the list is Partnership Life assurance specialist, that provides financial products for the people whose illness has cut their life expectancy. The annual league table, now in its 13th year, ranks companies according to growth in profits over the last three years of available audited accounts. This year’s league table features wellknown brands such as shoe maker Dr Martens (No 8), child car seat maker Britax Childcare (No 19), lifestyle retailer Cath Kidston (No 47), shirt maker Charles Tyrwhitt (No 67), cinema operator Vue (No 77), and café operator Patisserie Valerie (No 79). Specialist insurer Partnership, which makes its first appearance this year, takes the top spot. The com-

pany sells long-term care plans, life assurance and equity release schemes as well as annuities exclusively to people whose life expectancy is significantly shortened due to medical conditions. Growing demand and backing from private equity house Cinven helped it grow profits on an average of 211% a year over three years to £37.7m in 2010. Despite tough economic conditions, the 100 companies on the league table grew their profits over the last three years by an average of 70% a year to combined profits of £1.2bn. Together they employ 60,750 staff, having added 23,600 employees to their workforce over the period, some as a result of acquisitions. The Profit Track 100 league table is sponsored by PwC, Lloyds Bank Wholesale Banking & Markets, and UBS Wealth Management. It is compiled by Fast Track, the Oxford-based networking events and research company.

Gujarat riots: 18 get life imprisonment

A designated Special Investigation Team (SIT) court pronounced the quantum of sentence in the Ode massacre case in which 23 people were found guilty of killing 23 Muslims in the Ode town of central Gujarat during the 2002 riots. Judge Poonam Singh punished 18 persons, guilty of murder, with life imprisonment and five others, guilty of attempt to murder, with seven-year jail term. The charges of conspiracy, rioting, arson, unlawful assembly, destruction of evidence etc were common to all 23 convicts. All the convicts were sentenced to rigorous imprisonment. The accused remained silent and calm in the courtroom when the judge pronounced quantum of punishment. The entire campus was in an uproar as the agitated relatives shouted slogans against the judiciary and chief minister Narendra Modi. While a family claimed alibi for a convict, a girl Dhruti Patel said that her father, Dilip Vinu Patel, was mentally unstable and was wrongly implicated in the case.

Chisti released from Ajmer jail

After spending over 14 months in jail, 80year-old ailing Pakistani scientist Mohammed Khalil Chisti was released on bail from Ajmer jail in a two-decade-old murder case and said he wanted to return to his homeland soon. “I am happy to be out of the jail. I believe in God and thank him. My wish is to see my family members in Pakistan as soon as possible,” Dr. Chisti, who was granted bail by the Supreme Court said as his brother Jamil Chisti and cousin Aaiyad Anwar-ul-Haq along with others gave him a warm welcome on stepping out of Ajmer central jail.

India's private schools ordered to reserve places for poor

The order was made by the country's Supreme Court after some resistance to the government's Right to Education bill 2009 which made primary education compulsory for all children more than 60 years after the country became independent. The Right to Free and Compulsory Education Bill will create a three year school building programme and end the powers of government officials to award places to favoured families. Campaigners say the proof of the government's commitment will be in its funding for new schools and training for thousands of new teachers in a sector where many expect to be paid without turning up to teach. But the impact of the bill will be felt most keenly be India's elite private schools. Several private schools mounted a legal challenge to the bill, but their objections were overruled by India's Supreme Court in a move which heralds a caste and class revolution in some of the Indian establishment's most cherished institutions.

India extends visa of US historian Heehs

Indian Government has extended the visa of controversial US historian Peter Heehs for one year, ignoring calls to deny him continued residence after some groups objected to his portrayal of Sri Aurobindo. Heehs has been informed about the extension that will allow him to stay in India till April 15, 2013. Several prominent authors, intellectuals and academics had protested the move to deny him an extension on his visa. The case reached the desk of Union home minister P Chidambaram last month, who cleared his visa extension.

Supreme Court wants VIP quota for Haj to go

The Supreme Court said that the VIP quota in Haj pilgrimage should not go on perpetually. An apex court bench headed by Justice Aftab Alam said that the government has proposed a Haj quota of one plus nine for VIPs, but it should come down to one plus three and eventually should be avoided. The court said this in the course of a hearing of petitions by Haj tour operators. The court is examining the VIP quota component of the Haj policy. Haj subsidy to become once in lifetime affair. This will ensure that the Haji will benefit from government subsidy only once in his/ her lifetime.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

the restaurant that houses largest collection of ancient Indian utensils By Purvi Apurva Shah

western etiquette. But this restaurant is a place where there Vishalla is a museum -restaurant based are no close rooms or in Ahmedabad and has been partonised halls, lanterns instead by VIPs and people from all around the of heavy lights, natuworld for its typical Gujarati food and its ral air replacing the ambience of Indian heritage and culture. air-conditioning, folk The highlight of this restaurant is its rare songs sung with no museum which has a collection of 3,500 mike, muddy lanes, precious Indian utensils. And in order to home-like food served Surendra C Patel see such a rare museum and dine a typion a leaf, folk-dance and traditional sitcal Gujarati cuisine, many famous digniting-arrangements, everything around taries have visited to this place. resembling a typical Indian village! Honourable guests included former Vishalla is the Indian Prime brain child of Mr Minister Mrs Indira Surendra Patel, a civil Gandhi, ambassadors engineer and interior of various countries, designer. Since 1965, Gujarat Chief he has polished his Minister Narendra skills in creating Modi and other forhuman environment mer chief ministers. on many occasions. Even former Prime Vishalla's portrayal Minister Atal Behari finds its traces from Vajpayee, Maneka the childhood memoGandhi, Shankersinh ries of Mr Patel. He Vaghela, corporate Vishalla's layout and could never find the honchos like decorum makes us calmness and relaxed Ambanis and feel proud of our rich atmosphere of a vilSinghanias, superstar Indian heritage lage in any of the Amitabh Bachchan, restaurants he had visited during his cricketer Sachin Tendulkar and many childhood days. As a designer, he always more have specially come to Vishalla to thought of ways to bring urban crowd enjoy meals amidst the outdoor rural closer to nature, and give them also the décor. The look of this restaurant is just experience of feeling free. He put his like a small Indian village where one gets ideas onto solid a chance to experiBollywood superstar Amitabh grounds through ence not only the Bachchan at Vishalla Vishalla's layout and Indian culinary but decorum, which is also see the biggest now making us all collection of utensils proud through its rich that were used in culture. olden times. After three years “Vechaar is probaof setting up Vishalla, bly the only museum he tried to locate big in the world exhibitutensils to give the ing 3,500 precious restaurant more ethutensils, 700 areca nic touch. He came nut crackers, 300 old across a place in locks, brass, bronze Saurashtra; where old and copper ware in utensils were being different sizes and melted and sold for brass value. Having shapes. An array of water containers – or the sensitive heart of a designer, the lotas, displays high level of craftsmanscene saddened his heart. He took a ship. The collections are from all over resolve to put in efforts to save and preGujarat, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, serve this tradiOrissa and even tional beauty in Central Asia,” utensils. said the designer Mr Patel, disand owner of the covered the name restaurant Mr Vishalla in a book. Surendra C Patel. This book covers Apart from the life of ancient utensils, Swaminarayan the museum housGuru. There is a es a vast collecsmall district in tion of antique Himalayas -Badri pots that were Vishala'; which is used to fetch observed as a water, jewellery prominent solace boxes, multi-purfor the rishi-munis' pose hair pins Vechaar Museum exhibits since time imme(these could be 3,500 precious utensils, morial. The place used as weapons 700 areca nut crackers is fit for the purfor self -defense and 300 old locks pose owing to the by girls as it has vastness in the ambience and immense sharp and strong needle), turban boxes relaxation it offers. The name caught the (used by kings in the past), bismillahs, sensitive eyes of Mr Patel weapons, weighing as it related to his vision scales, dowry boxes, of the restaurant - a place musical roller pins of to have home-like food in olden times. a relaxed atmosphere and Vishalla is a tribute to free mind. the creative efforts of Vishalla reveals the mankind - from a humble charm of yesteryears and potter to the master a high sense of aesthetics craftsmen. It is like seecombined with utility. ing kitchens of India in If you are a tourist in the confines of antiquity Ahemadabad, make it a and tradition. point to visit this place. It The name restaurant offers a unique experiusually gives us the picence of revisiting the life ture of a brightly lit, airDine and enjoy folk-dance and lifestyles of past era. conditioned hall with


By Dr Anil Mehta

Lord Curzon: Viceroy of India Part II – The Partition of Bengal D

ivide and rule : Curzon’s final year (1905) in office was marred by his controversial Partition of Bengal. Despite warnings to the contrary, he went ahead with the partition along communal lines which secured the enmity of educated Indians especially Bengali Hindus, and provoked a major political crisis at a national level that involved non-violent and violent protests. It became Curzon’s nemesis. All his reforming zeal and less controversial and even commendable prepartition achievements (see Part I) were quickly forgotten. In 1905 Bengal was partitioned into East Bengal and Assam with the Muslim majority with capital at Dacca and the remaining half West Bengal which also included Bihar and Orissa. This made Bengali-speaking Hindu majority, a linguistic minority (because of the inclusion of Bihar and Orissa) in the new western province. The partition was carried out with ‘the reckless disregard of the feelings of the people’ (Bal Gangadhar Tilak). No Indian or Bengali was consulted. According to Curzon and his advisors, Bengal being ungovernably large, was partitioned in the name of administrative convenience, but other motives soon transpired. The popular belief was that partition was the most effective way of curbing the rapid growth of nationalism and of widening the gulf between Hindus and the Muslims. It was seen as a blatant tactic of divide and rule. Partition provoked a major confrontation with the government and precipitated a huge political crisis. There were widespread anti-partition protests which evolved into divisive religious identities of Hindus and the Muslims. The partition was opposed by educated Bengali Hindus. This was a vivisection of their beloved homeland and a blatant attempt to reduce their political influence. However, it was popular among East Bengali Muslims. They saw in the new province more opportunities for education, employment, and prosperity, away from the domination of Calcutta. Nationalists across the country took Bengali cause. Congress party launched a nationwide swadeshi movement to

boycott British goods and encourage the use of local products. Away from Calcutta, agitation particularly spread to the Punjab and Maharashtra. Meanwhile Curzon had convinced himself that opposition to the measure would be purely temporary. He had regarded congress as a spent force, instead he unwittingly instilled a new life into it. The boycott of British goods proved very successful especially with cotton products. It stimulated the dormant cottage industry (hand spinning and weaving) in India. To keep with demands of swadeshi cloth, cotton mills sprang up in Ahmedabad, Bombay, and Nagpur creating a brief period of industrial boom. Swadeshi movement became a symbol of national devotion, unity, and pride. The Tata Iron and Steel Company was founded in Jamshedpur at the height of the swadeshi movement. Opposition to the partition was led by Indian National Congress which had split into two groups during 1906 Surat Congress. There was disagreement over the handling of the protest. Liberals like Gopal Krishna Gokhale, and Feroz Shah Mehta preferred moderation while radicals such as Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Bipin Chandra Pal, and Lala Lajpat Rai (famously known as Bal, Pal, and Lal), and Arbind Ghosh preferred action to words. A huge amount of nationalist literature was created during this period from Bengal. Calcutta came alive with rallies, petitions, posters, pamphlets, and bonfires of British goods. People of all classes and ages joined in the protest with equal zeal and determination. It was a remarkable show of united and effective action. The slogan ‘Vande Mataram’ was adopted. Government’s

(Lord Minto was the viceroy) heavy-handed response could not stifle the opposition. On the contrary a small band of revolutionaries employed even more radical tactics of bombings and assassinations. The government came down heavily on the protesters. Against the backdrop of increased agitation – violent and peaceful, arrests were made on the grounds of sedition and hundreds of extremists were put behind bars. Public meetings were banned, the media curtailed, and the marchers attacked. Tilak was charged with sedition and sent to six years jail in Burma. Arbind Ghosh, after a brief period of jail for suspected terrorism withdrew to the French territory of Pondicherry for a life of yoga, meditation and spiritual devotion. British government finally yielded to strong political protests. At last in 1911, Viceroy Lord Hardinge proposed the reunification of Bengal. A new province of Bihar and Orissa was created with its capital at Patna, making restored Bengal a Bengali-speaking province. Assam was returned to the jurisdiction of a Chief Commissioner. The news was made public by King George V in 1911 at the Coronation Durbar at Delhi. The king also announced the transfer of national capital from Calcutta to centrally located Delhi, where a new city (New Delhi) would be born. The Congress, satisfied with the outcome abandoned agitation, however, it caused resentment among Bengali Muslims who felt they were betrayed by the British. While Bengal Partition served to raise Congress to new heights of national popularity, it also provided incentive for separate Muslim political demands. In 1906, the All India Muslim League was founded in Dacca to advance the interest of Muslims. So, with the Bengal Partition two distinctive communities developed with their own political agendas. Curzon once boasted that he would carry out a program that would keep British in India for at least another 100 years, however, what he did (Partition of Bengal) had exactly the opposite effect! The National Congress became stronger in its drive for eventual independence.



Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

WOMEN ACHIEVERS Mallika Sarabhai danseuse and social activist


Pearl of the Indian Ocean

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Mauritian band playing, and you can enjoy a wide variety of cuisines including European, Chinese, Indian and Mauritian. The hotel also offers a free shuttle boat service to the neighbouring Ile Aux Cerfs island. Or you can book a tour including a boat cruise to a turquoise lagoon, a safe haven dedicated to glass-bottom boat rides, or try snorkelling in the crystal clear blue waters and discover why its coral reefs are so famous, filled with an abundance of exotic fish to spot. For the more adventurous, there are diving tours available, so you can swim with a dazzling array of tropical fish. If you’ve got cash to splash, stay at the Beau Rivage 5* beach hotel, located at Belle Mare on the east of the island. With traditional Mauritian

décor, an array of cuisines, and magnificent sea views, this is the place for you. The large pool offers amazing sea views, and with their beach service where drinks and food will

be brought to your sun lounger, you will feel spoilt with the excellent, friendly service. If you decide to venture outside of the hotels you are staying in, top sightseeing spots include

Casela Bird Park, Pamplemousses Park; there are 18-hole golf courses available, and for bargain hunters, you can pick up some excellent designer clothes at discounted prices in the city

tainment system in every seat offering a wide choice of films and music. With friendly staff, experience flying in comfort in business or economy in its latest state-of-the-art Airbus A340-300. If you can, choose business class for a luxurious flight offering lie-flat seats with a 5 feet seat length, a choice of three gourmet hot meals with a selection of vintage French wines, spirits, and Brut Champagne. To arrange your holiday to Mauritius, book with Brightsun Travel, who offer a complete holiday service with helpful and friendly consultants. They negotiate fantastic deals on hotels, and will

By AV Correspondent Mallika Sarabhai is a social activist and an accomplished Kuchipudi and Bharatanatyam dancer from Ahmedabad and daughter of classical dancer Mrinalini Sarabhai and late space scientist Vikram Sarabhai. She started her dancing lessons as well as her film career when she was 15. Mallika played the role of Draupadi in Peter Brook's play “The Mahabharata.” Mallika has won many accolades during her long career, the Golden Star Award being one of them, which she won for the Best Dance Soloist, Theatre De Champs Elysees, Paris 1977. She, along with her mother manages the Darpana Academy of Performing Arts located at Ahmedabad. In 1989 she performed hard-hitting solo theatrical works, Shakti: The Power of Women. Later she directed and acted in numerous productions reflecting current issues. She also wrote the script

for the play ‘Unsuni’ based on Harsh Mander's book ‘Unheard Voices.’ Arvind Gaur later directed it as a play, with the same name. Darpana launched the people awareness movement through ‘Unsuni’ which travels all

over India. In 2009 Mallika acted in Bertolt Brecht's Indian adaptation of “The Good Person of Szechwan” (Ahmedabad ki Aurat Bhali-Ramkali) directed by Arvind Gaur in the 34th Vikram Sarabhai International Art Festival.

Mallika met Bipin Shah during her college days and eventually married him. They were divorced seven years later. They have two children, a son, Revanta and a daughter Anahita. Bipin and Mallika co-founded Mapin Publishing in 1984 and continue to run it together. During the Lok Sabha elections in March 2009, Mallika contested as an independent candidate against Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate L K Advani for the Gandhinagar seat. She described her candidature as a Satyagraha against the politics of hatred. She eventually lost to Advani by a huge margin. She also opposed Chief Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘sadbhavna’ (harmony) fasts. The holder of MBA and doctorate degree from IIM Ahmedabad, she is a multitalented personality. She has proved her worth in all the streams, be it editing, anchoring, film making, dancing, acting etc.

Deoband urges Muslims to avoid polygamy

centre. Mauritius manufactures many designer garments and exports them so by buying from there, you’ll get them at bargain prices. The easiest way to get

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arrange transfers and travel insurance at your request. For flights and 7 nights half board, Brightsun have many special offers on the hotels mentioned and more, with packages starting from only £1059 pp. For example you can get great deals at the luxurious 4* Le Meridien Ile Maurice (subject to availability). Travel between 1st June and 30th September 2012, and you will get 14% off if you book a month in advance, or 12% off if you book for a minimum of 7 nights. Brightsun Travel offers a price match promise on worldwide flights and holidays so you will get the best deals. To book your dream holiday, call Brightsun Travel on 0208 819 0486 or visit

Deoband, the influential seminary, has directed Muslims in India to avoid practising polygamy, an initiative that has won instant approval much like the 2008 advisory that denounced terrorism as a grave sin against Islam. Responding to a query from a person who wanted to marry again while his first wife was alive, the Deobandi scholars advised him against another marriage. "It is hard to provide equal justice to two wives in the Indian custom," the Deoband fatwa said, pointing out that although marrying a second time is "allowed" in Islam, it is not encouraged. "Although Islam permits two wives at the same time, Indian traditions do not allow it," the seminary's verdict said, referring to the particular question. Deoband's words carry a lot of weight for many Muslims across the world. The Islamic seminary, founded over 150 years ago in a small western Uttar Pradesh town of the same name, trains thousands of imams, muftis and qazis who spread the ideals of Sunni Islam across South Asia, Europe and North America.

Naeem-Ur-Rahman Siddiqui, secretary of the Lucknow-based Islamic Council of India, welcomed Deoband's thrust on social reforms. "There are a lot of myths about Muslims and polygamy that need to be clarified. First, it is not binding on Muslims to marry more than once. Second, the idea of permitting second, third or fourth marriages has certain conditions that

need to be fulfilled. Islam prohibits extra-marital relations and views marriage as a social contract," he said. Naeem, 42, added that the important aspect, as the Deoband fatwa has emphasised, is the idea of ensuring justice and equality when a man chooses to marry for the second time. "Religious sayings state that if a man fails to impart justice to his wives, he would be tilting, as if unable to stand erect on the day of judgment," Naeem said. "Can you

name any top 10 Islamic personality who has married twice or more?" Bhopal's city qazi, Maulana Mushtaq Nadwi, said Deoband's words put the Islamic view of marriage in a correct perspective. "Islam champions justice and equality in the social sphere, too. If a man does not fulfil his obligations towards his one wife, he will be penalised for that, too. In Indian socioeconomic conditions, most Muslims do not practise polygamy in any case," he said. Echoing these sentiments, the president of the Uttar Pradesh I m a m Organisation, Mufti Zulfikar, said that although Islam allows a second marriage on condition that the husband would ensure equal maintenance, "it is difficult to accord the same treatment to both women". Noted scholar Ghulam Rasool Wastanvi, who had a brief and controversial stint as rector of the Deoband seminary, had explained fatwas as "opinions" based on Islamic Sharia law to an individual's query. "They cannot be generalised," Wastanvi had said.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

Eating trans fat could make you more aggressive Increased consumption of dietary trans fatty acids (dTFAs) could be behind greater irritability and aggression among men and women of all ages, a new study has suggested. The study by researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine provides the first evidence linking dTFAs with adverse behaviors that impacted others, ranging from impatience to overt aggression. The research, led by Beatrice Golomb, MD, PhD, associate professor in the UC San Diego Department of Medicine, surveyed nearly 1,000 men and women. Dietary trans fatty acids are primarily products of hydrogenation, which makes unsaturated oils solid at room temperature. They are present at high levels in margarines, shortenings and prepared

foods. Adverse health effects of dTFAs have been identified in lipid levels, metabolic function, insulin resistance, oxidation, inflammation, and cardiac health. The UC San Diego team used baseline dietary information and behavioral assessments of 945 adult men and women to analyze the relationship between dTFAs and aggression or irritability. The survey measured such factors as a life history of aggression, conflict tactics and self-rated impatience and irritability,

as well as an "overt aggression" scale that tallies recent aggressive behaviours. Analyses were adjusted for sex, age, education, and use of alcohol or tobacco products. "We found that greater trans fatty acids were significantly associated with greater aggression, and were more consistently predictive of aggression and irritability, across the measures tested, than the other known aggression predictors that were assessed," said Golomb. "If the association between trans fats and aggressive behavior proves to be causal, this adds further rationale to recommendations to avoid eating trans fats, or including them in foods provided at institutions like schools and prisons, since the detrimental effects of trans fats may extend beyond the person who consumes them to affect others," Golomb added.

Any quest ions

write to mam ta@thin By Mamta Saha Psychologist

What is your current position?

I am an optometrist who owns two successful practices and also works as a Senior Hospital Optometrist part time. Currently, I am an elected member of the Local Optical Committee and studying towards a Post Graduate Diploma in Clinical Optometry. How do you find time to relax? Striking a balance is extremely important to your general well-being, although you rarely find me sitting around doing nothing! I never delay doing something tomorrow that can be done today. What do enjoy most about your career? I love what I do - plain and simple. I genuinely get a lot of pleasure from helping people and when

Eat nuts daily for healthy heart Eating one ounce of mixed nuts (raw unpeeled walnuts, almonds and hazelnuts) a day may benefit those who are at high risk for heart disease and type 2 diabetes, a new study has suggested. Scientists have for the first time found a link between eating nuts and higher levels of serotonin in the bodies of patients with metabolic syndrome (MetS), who are at high risk for heart disease. Serotonin is a substance that helps transmit nerve signals and decreases feelings of hunger, makes people feel happier and improves heart health. Cristina AndresLacueva and colleagues

from the Biomarkers and NutriMetabolomics Research Group of the University of Barcelona in collaboration with the Human Nutrition Unit of the Rovirai Virgili University explained that the rise in obesity around

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the world means more and more patients have MetS. Symptoms of MetS include excess abdominal fat, high blood sugar and high blood pressure, which increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and heart disease. To check the biochemical effects of nut consumption, the researchers


put 22 MetS patients on a nut-enriched diet for 12 weeks and compared them to another group of 20 patients who were told to avoid nuts. The scientists analysed the broad spectrum of compounds excreted in the patients' urine and found evidence of several healthful changes. One surprise was evidence that nut consumption had boosted patients' levels of serotonin metabolites in urine. They point out that the study provides the first evidence in humans of the beneficial effects of nut consumption in reducing levels of substances in the body associated with inflammation and other cardiovascular risk factors in patients with metabolic syndrome.

make tough decisions at times. Try to surround yourself with like-minded people. Ultimately, always look deep within for inspiration and guidance. No one else can do this for you, you have to do it for yourself. Who or what inspires you? From an early age my mum has always been my inspiration. But really anyone who is willing to push the boundaries to become something or be someone better than they thought they could be. That requires courage and freedom from fear. Reshma Patel can be contacted on For further information search for Martin Reynolds Opticians on Facebook.

you enjoy doing something so much you tend to do better in your chosen field. Also, because I have selected such a varied career path I am able to appreciate and experience the vast diversity that Optometry has. What has been your greatest achievement to date? Being a finalist, out of five, for the Optician Awards - Optometrist of the Year 2012. In addition also to one of the practices being a finalist for Fashion Frames Practice of the Year 2012. What advice would you give to anyone wishing to be their own boss? Be organised and prepared to work immensely hard, luck is something that arrives a lot later on. Be strong and expect to

Earphones can kill you Despite the number of fatalities from iPod oblivion (the act of walking on roads with earphones) people do not seem to be taking the menace seriously. It's human to err, but on the road, it can prove fatal. Especially when you have earphones on, and cannot hear approaching traffic. The menace of iPod oblivion, or the act of walking on road with your headphones on, is fast becoming one of the major causes of accidents on roads. In November last year a Delhi student was killed when she was hit by a bike and then a bus, since she had her earphones on and couldn't hear approaching traffic. And the cases are only taking place more frequently now. A Delhi traffic official said, it's astonishing how careless people can be, especially with their life. Crossing roads while listen-

ing to music is dangerous not only for them, but also for others who are commuting on road. One such incident happened recently. One man was crossing the road while listening to music, didn't hear the horn of an approaching car, which resulted in an accident. The car driver, while trying to save the man, lost control and banged into a motorbike. These people are not only endangering their lives, but many others too." Doctors say that shutting themselves from the world through earphones, can make pedestrians oblivious to approaching traffic, and also reduce their reaction time in case of an emergency situation.


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Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

CB Live is only a Gujarati programme in UK on MATV SKY 793 This week in CB Live, Dipika Khaitan, President, The Akshayapatra Foundation (UK) and famous literatteur and scholar Balwant Jani will be interviewed by Jyotsna Shah, Consulting Editor, Gujarat Samachar If you do not have a SKY, go to and watch CB Live on TVU Player Channel 75203

Sneh Joshi - 020 8518 5500 The need to push ahead with personal interests and to assert yourself with added force will take precedence over everything else for some time to come. Mentally you will be in top form, perhaps feeling quite passionate about expressing your ideas and views. It is certainly a good time to get involved in lively debate.

ARIES Mar 21 - Apr 20

7pm to 8pm Every Thursday

CB LIVE Every Thursday on MATV (SKY 793) 7pm to 8pm For more information email: or call Alka Shah on 07944 151 893

Anti terrorism hotline hacked British police launched an investigation on last Thursday after hackers linked to the anti-establishment group Anonymous blocked an anti-terrorism hotline and illegally recorded officers from Britain’s top security unit discussing their actions. An activist group called Team Poison jammed the hotline with repeated calls - so called “phone bombing” , preventing those with genuine concerns

from getting through in the latest attack on a high-profile institution. “We are aware of an issue whereby hoaxers have made calls to the Anti-Terrorist hotline and have made recordings of their conversations with Anti-Terrorist hotline staff,” London’s metropolitan police service said. “Officers are looking into the matter and appropriate action will be taken.”

Parents to raise £55,000 for operations in USA A seven-year-old twin girl who is unable to walk needs £55,000 for a lifechanging procedure in the USA. Mahlica Ajaib, of Castle View Gardens, Gants Hill suffers extensive pain as she has a form of cerebral palsy. Her parents are trying to raise the money by July to fund two operations before her condition deteriorates too far. Father Atif Ajaib, 37, said: “Mahlica dreams of being like every other girl who is able to walk and we are working hard to try and make her dream come true.”

Mahlica was born prematurely and diagnosed with diplegia cerebral palsy when she was 13 months old which means she needs to use a wheelchair. Since being diagnosed Mahlica has undergone numerous procedures, but these have only worked on a temporary basis. The operation is available at a hospital in Bristol, but only to a limited number of patients. Donations and more information is at ica, from where more than £10,000 has already been raised.

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Coming Events ! An evening of mesmerising ghazals by the amazing Raj Rattan all the way from Canada. He will be singing ghazals from his latest album “Rishtey”. Tickets are £30 per head inclusive of 3 course meal. Contact: Ali Musani on 07712-563254 ! On Sunday 22nd April 2012 - 3.00pm -5.30pm Bhajans by Shree Budhdevbhai, Shree Manubhai Kotak and various visiting Artists and finishing with aarti and Maha Prasad. Adhya Shakti Mataji Temple, Cowley, Middlesex UB8 2DX. Contact: 07882 253 540 ! Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Celebration ; Indian Cultural Centre, Croydon, Saturday 2nd June, Queen’s Gardens, Fell Rd. 3 pm. ! Ramanuja Jayanti by Maharashtra Mandala. Saturday, 28 April, 5.30 pm – 8 pm, Venue: Maharashtra Mandal, 306 Dollis Hill Lane, London NW2 6HH. ! President’s Reception 2012 AAHOA, Thursday 3 May, Atlanta, Georgia 30303, Metro Atlanta Chamber. By invitation only. ! NCGO - Political Conference With Presentations, Questions and Answers by Individuals and Community Leaders, 19th April 2012 at Kadwa Patidar Samaj Hall, Kenmore Avenue, Harrow. HA3 8UL. 6.30pm -10.30pm. Councillor Rameshbhai Patel 07985 477839. ! Nehru Centre, 8 South Audley Street London W1K 1HF. Contact (020) 7 491 3567 20 April: Book Launch/Talks/Music : Tum Kesar Hum Kiyari Sohan Rahi2012 24 April Exhibition of Paintings : Green Anil Nijhawan 27 April Music: Hindustani Vocal Recital: Shaila Piplapure 30 April Exhibition/Talk/Film : In Court with Queen Victoria: A Maharajah & A Munshi April 2012

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TAURUS Apr 21 - May 21 You will have the distinct feeling that everything is moving ahead at a very satisfying pace. Indeed, you will be in a forward-looking mood, more inclined to reflect on the future and its potentials. The power of destiny is very much in your own hand and any major decision you make will have a profound effect on your future. You may find yourself hard at work behind the scenes, although that may not be apparent to others. You may find yourself caught up in a whirlwind of activity, with opportunities to advance on both the inner and outer level. There’s a sparkle to your social life and you will have fun communicating with others.

GEMINI May 22 - June 22

The Sun is transiting your solar 11th house of friends, groups, and networking from this week. It's a sociable sector of your chart, and that's exactly how you will feel, light-hearted, cosmopolitan, and social. This is a rather happy, goal-oriented cycle. Relationships take on a fun, if impersonal, tone now.

CANCER Jun 22 - Jul 22

LEO Jul 23 - Aug 23 Make a very conscious attempt to stick to main priorities. Organise your time so that it is not taken up entirely by the demands of other people. If you know your ground and are not afraid to stick your neck out, you can create your own opportunities. A good time for the affairs of the heart. VIRGO Aug 24 - Sep 23 The Sun puts a spotlight on your solar ninth house. During this transit you will seek to expand your horizons through philosophical thinking, higher education, travel, or simply activities that take you away from your everyday routines. Your energy is strong and you are much bolder and adventurous than usual. LIBRA Sep 24 - Oct 23 The Sun highlights your solar eighth house. Your attention turns inward on a deeper level to personal transformations. There may be a strong focus on other's money, such as the resources of a partner, inheritance, banking and loans, or taxes. This transit should be positively dealt with to achieve any benefits. SCORPIO Oct 24- Nov 22

The Sun is transiting your solar seventh house--your partnership sector. It's not the time to push your personal plans forward; rather, it's a time to give. Focus should be on reconciliation, diplomacy and one-on-one interactions. You may feel a little drained physically but remember it is only temporarily.

SAGITTARIUS Nov 23 - Dec 21 The Sun puts a spotlight on your solar sixth house. This is a busy period that finds you tending to many different aspects of your daily routine and health matters. You are in a very fortunate position to be able to improve your health and diet and also tackle any problems at work, which have been a source of irritation for some time. CAPRICORN Dec 22 - Jan 20 The Sun is transiting your solar fifth house. This is the time of year when you are ready to perform and express yourself creatively. It's a good time for recreation, romance, connecting with children, and enjoying "performing arts". Make sure you do not get over-sensitive if things do not go according to plan. AQUARIUS Jan 21 - Feb 19 The Sun puts a spotlight on your solar fourth house. This is a time to recharge yourself, get in touch with your innermost feelings, connect with your roots, and spend more time with your loved ones. Use this opportunity to find ways to improve your family relations and your home environment. PISCES Feb 20 - Mar 20 Activities and interests that involve co-operation and teamwork are very much in the spotlight. You will be able to further your special aims and objectives by communicating and working closely with others. You will experience some tension in close relationships - take careful stock of things, especially your own attitude.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012

UNLIMITED FREE CALLS Lycamobile to Lycamobile


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For your FREE Lycamobile SIM visit or call 020 7132 0322 for all our latest offers and rates Buy and top up online or in over 115,000 stores

Customers may not be able to use Electronic Top-Up at all locations where the top-up logo appears 1p per minute to selected international landlines and mobiles in April 2012. £10 credit offer: When you top up with a £20 voucher online during March and April 2012, you will be credited with an additional £10 call credit. Offer valid only on the first 2 online £20 top ups during March and April 2012.. Unlimited calls from Lycamobile to Lycamobile: From the March 1st to April 30th 2012, customers with a minimum balance of 20p can enjoy free and unlimited calls from Lycamobile UK to Lycamobile UK Any changes to rates will be notified on the rates section of our website at or call our customer services team on 020 7132 0322 to check rates or for more information. Prices and offers are correct at the time of going to print on 10.04.2012.


Asian Voice - Saturday 21st April 2012


IPL Results of 12 to 21 matches played till Tuesday, 17th April Match Date 12 11 April


12 April


12 April


13 April


14 April


15 April


15 April


16 April


17 April


17 April

Teams MI v/s RR at Mumbai MI won by 27 runs Brief scores: MI 197/6 (20 overs); RR 170 (19.4 overs) CSK v/s RCB at Chennai CSK won by 5 wickets Brief scores: RCB 205/8 (20 overs); CSK 208/5 (20 overs) KXIP v/s PW at Mohali KXIP won by 7 wickets Brief scores: KXIP 115 (19/20 overs); KXIP 116/3 (17.4/20 overs) KKR v/s RR at Kolkata KKR won by 5 wickets Brief scores: RR 131/5 (20 overs); KKR 137/5 (19.2/20 overs) PW v/s CSK at Pune PW won by 7 wickets Brief scores: CSK 155/5 (20 overs); PW 156/9 (19.2/20 overs) KKR v/s KXIP at Kolkata KXIP won by 2 runs Brief scores: KXIP 134/9 (20 overs); KKR 132/7 (20 overs) RCB v/s RR at Bangalore RR won by 59 runs Brief scores: RR 195/2 (20 overs); RCB 136 (19.5/20 overs) MI v/s DD at Mumbai DD won by 7 wickets Brief scores: MI 92 (19.2/20 overs); DD 93/3 (14.5/20 overs) RR v/s DC at Jaipur RR won by 5 wickets Brief scores: DC 196/2 (20 overs); RR 197/5 (19.420 overs) PW v/s RCB at Bangalore RCB won by 6 wickets Brief scores: PW 182/6 (20 overs); MI 186/4 (20 overs)

Botham raises ÂŁ25,000 in a day for charity Cricket legend Sir Ian Botham has raised an unbelievable amount of 25,000 pounds in a day through road collection alone for charity work. Botham is on an historic charity drive for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research, the only charity dedicated to research into blood cancers, including leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma. He was saluted by hundreds of well-wishers on the third day of his 160-mile fund raising campaign.

Indian MPs beat British MPs in Twenty20 A century by former India captain Mohammad Azharuddin and four wickets for 27 runs by skipper Anurag Thakur helped Indian Parliamentarians to score a 56 runs win over British Parliamentarians in a friendly Twenty20 match played at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPPCA) Stadium in Dharmasala. Batting first, the Indian MPs scored 226 for four. Azharuddin scored 100 (retired) in 46 balls with two sixes and 17 fours. Kuldeep Singh Bishnoi scored 54, while HPCA president Anurag Thakur 22 in 12 balls. Other parliamentarians who played were Dushayant Singh, Kailash Singh Deo and G. Vivekanand. British skipper Matthew Hancock was the most successful bowler, taking two wickets for 40 runs in four overs. Chasing a stiff target, opener Lord Faulks scored 30-ball 31 while A.Jackman hit 37 runs with five boundaries.

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Rajasthan Royals consign Deccan Chargers to third defeat

Rajasthan Royals 197 for 5 beat Deccan Chargers 196 for 2 at Jaipur. Not even eight days rest, their best efforts with the bat and Amit Mishra's three wickets were enough to earn Deccan Chargers a first win in IPL 2012. After Kumar Sangakkara and Shikhar Dawan put on the highest first-wicket partnership of the season, and JP Duminy and Daniel Christian blasted 77 off the last five overs, Chargers piled on a hefty score for Rajasthan Royals to chase, but they were unable to defend it on a flat pitch with small boundaries. Rahul Dravid and Ajinkya Rahane did the groundwork and Brad Hodge finished off fiercely. Almost everything Chargers did, Royals did better. Although Dravid and Rahane shared a stand of only 62, compared to Sangakkara and Dhawan's 94, the Royals pair scored at a faster rate. They went at 10.62 runs to the over compared to Sangakkara and Dhawan's 8.81. Chargers had amassed 119 for 2 after 15 overs, Royals had the same score after 13. Duminy's 58 came at a strike rate of 223.07, Brad Hodge's 48 came at a strike rate of 228.57, and that was perhaps the difference between the two sides. With a tall task ahead of them, Royals approached it aggressively. Rahul Dravid tore into an out-of-sorts Dale Steyn in the second over, using the pace to club him for three

Brad Hodge scored 48 off 21 balls against Deccan Chargers in Jaipur on April 17

fours. With the in-form Rahane on the other end, Daniel Christian and birthday-boy Anand Rajan also took a pasting and Royals raced to the fastest fifty in this season's tournament, off 4.5 overs. Dravid seemed set for a much longer stay at the crease but was foxed by a Christian slower ball that was aimed at his legs. He did not get inside the line and the ball cannoned into the pads and onto the stumps. The wicket brought a short-lived calm to the crease as Rahane and Ashok Menaria consolidated. Unlike Chargers, who suffered a lapse in the mid-section of their innings and scored 23 runs between overs 13 and 16, Royals kept their slump to just two overs. The 8th and 9h overs yielded only eight runs in total but Rahane soon had the wheels turning again with a six over long-off

after charging down the track to Mishra. Menaria was not expected to bat at No. 3, given the match situation which needed quick runs, but Royals stuck to their original lineup and he did not let them down. He freed his arms and found the boundary and seemed a worthy partner to Rahane until he pulled straight to short midwicket. Rahane holed out two overs later to cause jitters in the Royals camp. Royal Challengers win In the second match De Villiers helps Royal Challengers Bangalore pull off thriller. RCB won by six wickets. Pune Warriors left out a batsman and brought in a bowler. They also left out their best bowler of the season, Muttiah Muralitharan, and brought in an allrounder, Tillakaratne Dilshan. But Royal Challengers

Bangalore, having lost their previous three games due to poor bowling, still ended up conceding more than nine runs an over. Robin Uthappa did most of the scoring with a powerpacked half-century at the top of the order with Jesse Ryder and Marlon Samuels chipping in with smaller contributions. Warriors were away from the moment Uthappa hit Dilshan for 13 in the second over with a slogswept six and a cut for four. Ryder took on Zaheer Khan in the third over with a couple of boundaries down the ground. The opening partnership was worth 63 by the seventh over before Harshal Patel, in for S Aravind, had Ryder topedging a pull to Mayank Agarwal in the deep. Uthappa had a couple of let-offs in the eighth over against left-arm spinner KP Appanna. Consecutive appeals for caught-behind were turned down as Uthappa looked to paddle the bowler fine, with there being doubt as to whether there was bat involved. Uthappa responded by carting Appanna for six over wide long-on. By now, Uthappa was in complete control. He made room to lift Harshal over extra cover and guided him just past the wicketkeeper for fours. He timed three consecutive reverse-sweeps off Dilshan, with two of them beating short third man.

Alastair Cook, Tim Bresnan and Sangakkara named Wisden's Cricketers of the Year

England cricketers Alastair Cook and Tim Bresnan were named in Wisden's five-man Cricketers of the Year list. Cook made 927 Test runs at an average of 84 in addition to his return to the one-day international side as captain, and Bresnan took 21 Test wickets at 19, scoring 189 runs at 63 and finishing the summer with a 100 per cent winning record from 10 Tests. Also on the list is Sri Lankan batsman Kumar Sangakkara, who became the first man to be named simultaneously as Wisden's leading cricketer in the world and one of its five Cricketers of the Year. Joining Cook, Bresnan and Sangakkara as Cricketers of the Year are

fellow veterans Glen Chapple, Lancashire's title-winning captain, and Worcestershire seamer lan Richardson, the leading wicket-taker in Division One. The 34-year-old Sangakkara, one of the outstanding batsmen of his generation and for much of his career a top-class wicketkeeper as well, became the first man to receive

both awards since Wisden, 'cricket's bible', started naming a leading cricketer of the year in 2004. In 2011, no-one else came close to the 2,267 runs Sangakkara scored in all international cricket, and he is now the only man to have topped 1,000 runs in Tests and one-day internationals in a single year on three separate occasions.

The left-hander also captained Sri Lanka to the World Cup final, where they were beaten by cohosts India in Mumbai. Off the field, he also received worldwide praise for giving a deeply heartfelt MCC Cowdrey Lecture at Lord's which caused shockwaves in his homeland when he called for the end of political interference in Sri Lankan cricket.

Indian Premier League 2012 Points Table (17 / 04 / 2012) Teams Match Won Lost Tied Rajasthan Royals 6 4 2 0 Delhi Daredevils 4 3 1 0 Pune Warriors 5 3 2 0 Mumbai Indians 5 3 2 0 Kolkata Knight Riders 5 2 3 0 Chennai Super Kings 5 2 3 0 Kings XI Punjab 4 2 2 0 Royal Challengers Bangalore 5 2 3 0 Deccan Chargers 3 0 3 0

N/R 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Points 8 6 6 6 4 4 4 4 0

Net RR +0.646 +1.099 +0.342 -0.088 +0.217 -0.108 -0.417 -0.800 -1.366

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