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FIRST & FOREMOST ASIAN WEEKLY IN EUROPE

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Let noble thoughts come to us from every side

10-16 AUGUST 2019 - VOL 48 ISSUE 15

ONE INDIA

inside: Indian-origin becomes the first ever to win Miss England title SEE PAGE 14

Former foreign minister Sushma Swaraj is no more SEE PAGE 26

On 13th April 1990, a Hindu Pandit had escaped from the Kashmir Valley's terrorstruck Baramulla district and traveled to the UK following the mass exodus of nearly 700,000 Kashmiri Pandits from India's only Muslim-majority state. Today, Vinod Tikoo is one of the many Hindu Pandits who has hailed Modi Government's initiative of abrogation of Article 370. The Government's decision to split the state of Jammu and Kashmir into two separate entities- the Union Territory of Ladakh governed directly by the Centre and the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir which would have a legislature of its own- has provoked debate. This comes at a time when many within the Congress Party including Jyotiraditya Scindia have supported the Modi Government in the revocation of Kashmir's “special status�.

Jammu and Kashmir loses special status SEE PAGE 16-17 Continued to page 9


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10 - 16 August 2019

onetoone WITH KEITH VAZ, MP

Ruth Tanner Ruth Tanner is the Head of Humanitarian Campaigns & Advocacy for Oxfam GB. She works to influence international responses to conflicts and disasters, raising funds for relief work and pressing for swifter aid and ending the root injustices. She tries and amplifies the voices of refugees, displaced people, and anyone affected by conflict and support people to rebuild their lives and stand up for their rights.

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Which place, or city or country do you most feel at home in? London is home though. Its such a vibrant place that it keeps me on my toes.

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What are your proudest achievements?

In 2015 and 2016, I was working with Oxfam helping refugees fleeing Syria and seeking safety in Europe. The dignity of the families in such diffi-

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What has been biggest obstacle in your career? To be honest, I think I've been incredibly lucky. No complaints.

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Who has been the biggest influence on your career to date? The anti war movement that tried to stop the war on Iraq. I was young, optimistic and convinced we'd stop it. We didn't & the result was devastating. I have tried to work for peace & justice ever since.

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What is the best aspect about your current role? Oxfam is campaigning to keep refugee families together. I am so heartened to see that welcome communities are offering refugees start a new life in the UK. Across the country people are offering homes, friendship, advice and support. We just need the governments policy to be this cult circumstances was humbling. I was proud to be able to shine a light on compassionate. the failures of governments to give them the And the worst? protection they deserved & do what I could to make their journey safer. The scale of crisis & the horror of war can feel overwhelming for all of us. As a camWhat insprires you? paigner, I try to identify where we can realI am constantly inspired by amazing, ener- ly make a difference and support people to getic and passionate grassroots activists and take action. Getting this right makes the job worth while. brave human rights defenders.

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What are your long term goals?

I think we're seeing at the moment that progress isn't something you can count on. My long term goal is to stay optimistic & not give up.

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If you were Prime Minister, what one aspect would you change? There are so many things, but if I could chose one thing to deliver today it would be an end to the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia for use in Yemen. The UK government is supporting peace talks and giving large amounts of humanitarian aid – but it continues to fuel the conflict by selling fighter jets, bombs, and missiles to the coalition led by Saudi Arabia. The government’s decision to continue selling arms to Saudi Arabia, is unlawful, some of the UK’s top judges have ruled. If I was the Prime Minister, I would stop fuelling the humanitarian crisis in Yemen.

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If you were marooned on a desert island, which historical figure would you like to spend your time with and why. Frida Kahlo - I think we'd have a lot to talk about & I've always wanted to learn to paint.

British Airways passengers accuse airline of racial discrimination A young family claim British Airways racially discriminated against them when staff refused to let them board despite going through checkin and security. The Moyo family from Kent were allowed through Schipol Airport in

Amsterdam without boarding passes which they believed would be issued at the gate. But when they arrived, Kiran and Dignity Moyo, with their threemonth old baby Noah, were not allowed to board the flight home to Gatwick last

month. They claim - along with a witness who filmed the incident - that a 'white Englishman' was allowed to travel without a boarding card while they were not. BA gate staff even called the police, who escorted the Moyos away from the scene.

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Mrs Moyo, an NHS pharmacist, was taking a family holiday and they were on their way home from Schiphol to Gatwick on July 20. She said today they were forced to spend £800 on a hotel room after they were turned away. The 31-year-old said: 'My child and myself were physically assaulted by the gate

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The 'white Englishman' (left) poses with Ms Moyo after he was issued with a boarding pass after going through security

worker when she attempted to grab my phone, with the intention of deleting contents of my phone.' It is understood flight delays at Schipol resulted in the Moyo family not getting boarding passes but airport management allowed them to go to the gate where it was expected they would be given passes by BA. Fellow passenger Joshua Arthur documented what followed. He wrote: 'Due to flight delay, a couple and their three-month-old baby hadn't checked in yet, which resulted in them not getting their boarding passes. 'The same thing happened to an Englishman. The airport staff understood the situation and let them all through security anyway. 'However, at the boarding gate, the British Airways workers let the English man on the plane, but wouldn't let the couple and their baby board - even though the airport staff had already let them through security without a boarding pass.

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'Us passengers filmed what happened at the boarding gate for evidence. When the British Airways workers found out they threatened us by saying that we weren't allowed to board the plane, unless they saw us delete the video.' BA said they have launched an investigation into the incident.

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Kiran and Dignity Moyo with their three-month-old baby at the boarding gate at Amsterdam's Schipol airport last month

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10 - 16 August 2019

Warts of the Liberal Inquisition Self regard and an inordinate conceit appear to be the hallmarks of people claiming to represent the self-defined liberal intelligentsia. Elections, for instance, are only credible when the party with the approved label emerges victorious. If the result fails to match expectations, the electoral process is disparaged and ridiculed. Such is the context of a recent development concerning the German Ambassador to India, Walter Lindner, whose visit to the RSS headquarters in Nagpur, has led to calls for his resignation or recall. How utterly stupid and asinine can one get? An envoy’s job, when he/she arrives in the country of accreditation is to understand its workings and gain necessary insight into its political, cultural and social landscape in order to deepen bilateral relations. Ambassador Lindner rightly explained that the RSS being a mass movement - part of the Indian ‘mosaic’ – it was his duty to be in dialogue with its leadership, fully aware that in the 1930s, its leading lights were sympathetic to the fascist regime in Italy and the Nazi in Germany. These were subjects the German envoy discussed with RSS President Mohan Bhagwat. ‘I asked him questions about radicalism, and there are no simple answers. The RSS is one part of the mosaic that makes up India. You can’t deny that this is a mass movement and whether you like it or not, it is out there,’ said the ambassador. Would his critics wish the cancellation of German aid towards the building of the Nagpur metro?, which was also the purpose of the ambassador’s visit to the city to keep abreast of its progress. Former President Pranab Mukherjee, a lifelong

Congressman, with almost four decades in office, was always open to every section of parliament, and hence was universally liked and admired. Subsequently, he got on famously with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who invariably sought his counsel on high matters of state, particularly on foreign affairs, where Mr Mukherjee possessed a wealth of experience. He stepped down as head of state, Mr Modi’s letter to him was most touching and gracious. In retirement, the RSS invited Mr Mukherjee to address its members, which he did unhesitatingly. He spoke his mind, as they did theirs. This is the essence of democracy. What the radical chic fraternity must bear in mind is that the RSS, like it or not, abides by the rule of law and the freedoms guaranteed to every Indian citizen or body the right to think freely and speak and write freely. India is neither China nor Saudi Arabia. No inquisition of left or of right can hijack these constitutional provisions with pretentious claims to political correctness, itself a spurious concoction designed to intimidate contrarians and undermine diplomatic liberty as generally understood and practised the world over for centuries. It was well within his rights and duties that Ambassador Walter Lindner conversed with the top RSS leadership. Hopefully, both sides were able to understand one another better, to the benefit of Indo-German understanding. An envoy’s task deserves public respect and not the excoriating abuse to which Britain’s recent ambassador to the United Sates was shamefully subjected by US President Donald Trump.

Statecraft in modern conditions Statecraft and its twin, international diplomacy, was conducted with appropriate suavity and finesse through the centuries. It has now been reduced to the menaces and crudity of mafia syndicates. The current United States administration bears the greatest responsibility for the intensified descent into the abyss. It defies rational understanding that the Trump administration has imposed economic sanctions on Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javed Zarif. The US National Security Adviser John Bolton described his position as ‘illegitimate.’ Does Iran’s sovereign right to appoint its own officials and ministers deserve such scornful dismissal? Mr Zarif, a mature adult, was amused by the by the insult, perceiving it, perhaps, as frustration, symbolising an empire in visible distress, unable to cope with the swells and cross-currents of international politics. Meddling in US elections has become a convulsive subject in the corridors of power. US intrusions into the affairs of other countries, engineering assassinations by the CIA in a bi d to overthrow legitimate governments deemed hostile to US interests, by the self-appointed messiah of the ‘free world.’ The country’s in-built racism finds repeated expression in rising hate crimes, the latest in Texas directed at Latinos by a white supremacist. No Russian has yet been detected. Twenty deaths and many more wounded, some seriously, tells of a broken society. Ronald Reagan in a casual conv ersation with Richard Nixon called Africans ‘monkeys.’ Nixon referred to Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi as a ‘bitch’ and Indians as ‘bastards’. Henry Kissinger echoed his master’s voice. The Vietnamese were subjected to racial abuse and worse in their time. Signs are that things are getting out of control. The Trump administration and NATO have arbitrarily aborted a nuclear arms limitation tre aty negotiated during the Cold War by US President Ronald Reagan and Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev. The Russian Federation has responded in kind, giving rise to the possibility of a new arms race.

Washington and Moscow are in possession of 90 per cent of the world’s nuclear weaponry. US Democratic Representative Tulsi Gabbard’s cautionary warning of the perils of a new arms race for humankind has led to a savage assault on her moral integrity by her country’s toxic mainstream media. She was denounced as a puppet of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The spirit of the McCarthy witch hunt is clearly alive and well. The racist insults hurled at Russia are not far from the vituperation that emanated from Adolf Hitler and his Nazi associates. Hugh Trevor-Roper’s, classic work, The Last Days of Hitler,’ rem ains surely a warning against a fatal rush to imperial over-reach and counter-productive invasion. Invasion, If much of the American talk we hear today were directed at, say, Israel, it would be denounced as devlish antiSemitic drivel. AJP Taylor, another distinguished English historian put it well. There is a ‘conviction,’ he wrote, ‘in the Western world – when is war not wicked, not a crime against humanity, not destructive, in fact, when is war not war? When it is against Russia,’ Russia has the high culture reminiscent of ancient Athens, opined the literary scholar and polymath George Steiner. This is twined, however, with the steely resolve of Sparta – a formidable combination. The ghostly counsel of Napoleon and Hitler, born of harsh personal experience would surely be to avoid baiting the Bea r. Conflict resolution is the need of the hour. South Korea and Japan have locked horns on bilateral trade; North Korea tests a series of new missiles, while the Middle East remains an incendiary powder keg. President Trump averred recently that Prime Minister Modi’s had allegedly requested US mediation of the Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan, much to India’s mystification. It now transpires that US arms sales to Pakistan are back on track. The twists and turns of statecraft have scant space for pious consolation.

Whizz kids in IIT Dhanbad Super 10’ was the name given to a coaching class established in a Bihar town by a local mathematician driven by a desire to help children from poor families crack the tough Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) entrance exams and make it to better life. One such example is 14-year, 11 month-old Chaturbhuj Singh, the youngest fresher at the IIT Dhanbad School of Mines. Chaturbhuj Singh says, ‘I know poverty first-hand...I want to contribute to society.’ He surely will. A 15 plus girl, Jyoti Priyadarshini, who also gained admission plans to do a 5-year course in Mining and Mechanical Engineering. There are other youngsters with an average of 18 who are part of the

campus, engaging a future that works. Ambition and hard work are their motto. R.K. Das, Chairman of the JEE Admissions Committee that admissions of these 14-16-year olds are based strictly on performance. While there is no age limit for youngsters the older category limit is 25 years. The youngest recorded IIT fresher remains 12 year-old Satyam Kumar from Bihar’s Bhojpur district, who made the cut in 2012. There are 23 IITs across India. India’s demographic dividend will be a future asset, say experts. More so, when there is a vast talent-pool from where captains of industry, science and engineering maestros are likely to emerge to take India forward to the next level.

Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is long and, in the end, it's only with yourself

- Baz Luhrmann

New idea of India The Modi government’s decision to abrogate the special status to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 fulfills a long-standing demand of BJP to integrate J&K with the Union of India a reality. The Constitution (Application to Jammu & Kashmir) Order 2019 supersedes the 1954 order, which included Article 35 A, and defined the state’s special status. Article 35 A has ceased to exist. The government has simultaneously proposed the bifurcation of the state into two Union Territories – Jammu and Kashmir with a legislature and Ladakh without a legislature. But the special status guaranteed to Jammu and Kashmir was not a partisan or personal decision of the founding fathers of the Indian republic. It was based in the imperative of nationbuilding. The developments are in no small measure about rewriting history, changing that very demography, and bringing in a new idea of India. The changes are no less than historic, they draw an audacious red line over and across the Nehruvian idea of India. But what is this new idea of India, and how will it be given shape? What will also go down in history is the manner in which the momentous change in J&K’s status has been brought about. There is no parallel in the history of independent India for the secrecy and stealth deployed by the government to bring in something that is politically and communally contentious. To do this at a time when Parliament is in session may be the BJP’s way of doing business, as it believes it has the mandate. Arguably, Article 370 had contributed to the problems in Kashmir. The state’s special powers of autonomy meant in practice arrogation of power by a tiny Valley elite, which led to a feeling of not being represented among the people of Jammu and Ladakh, as well as disaffection feeding into separatist sentiment in the Valley itself. And given that Kashmir came to be a troubled state with separatist sentiments being stoked by Pakistan with the help of cross-border terrorism.. Besides, Article 370 was meant to be a temporary provision. In that sense its cessation now is congruent with historical constitutional perspective. Now that the die has been cast, how the government proposes to carry this forward from here, how it will deal with the legal and political fallout and the reactions in the Valley, will decide many things for India. If the unkept promise of autonomy in Article 370 was the genesis of the Kashmir problem, the government has significantly departed from that, not just by its definitive move to scrap the constitutional guarantee of that autonomy but by demoting the state into truncated union territories that will now be governed directly by the Union home ministry through an all powerful Lt. Governor, working with an emasculated legislature. It is not the government’s intention to keep voices in the Valley suppressed. Rather the government's intentions are to remove restrictions on movement in the Valley. Editor: CB 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: aveditorial@abplgroup.com Website: www.abplgroup.com INDIA OFFICE Bureau Chief: Nilesh Parmar (BPO) AB Publication (India) Pvt. Ltd. 207 Shalibhadra Complex, Opp. Jain Derasar, Nr. Nehru Nagar Circle, Ambawadi, Ahmedabad-380 015. Tel: +91 79 2646 5960 Email: gs_ahd@abplgroup.com © Asian Business Publications


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Manchester Arena bomber's brother, 22, granted legal aid to fight charges n Families of the 22 victims continue to be denied cash

The brother of the Manchester Arena terrorist has been given legal aid - but his victims haven't. Hashem Abedi, 22, will be represented by state lawyers when he goes to trial accused of 22 counts of murder for each of the victims killed. But the families of the children and their parents murdered as they left the Ariana Grande concert in May 2017 have been denied taxpayer money to help their cases. The shocking revelation was made at a pre-inquest hearing into the death of their loved ones, reports The Sun. In court in Manchester on Friday the victims' lawyer Paul Greaney QC told coroner Sir John Saunders: 'Bereaved families are experiencing difficulties in obtaining funding from the Legal Aid Agency.' It echoes the problems experienced by families of the London Bridge terror attack's victims, who were also denied state legal fund-

CRICKET WORLD CUP DISORDER: POLICE TRACING EIGHT MEN

Hashem Abedi

ing. Brendan Cox, whose wife, Labour MP Jo, was killed by far-right extremist Thomas Mair, branded the decision 'twisted'. Other hate figures who have been allowed legal aid include Lee Rigby's killers Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale, extremist preacher Anjem Choudary and jihadi bride Shamima Begum. Families of the victims of Salman Abedi's suicide bomb have allegedly been told not to speak publicly about their ordeal ahead of the inquest, due to start in April. Hashem has already been represented by Zafar

Families of the children and their parents murdered as they left the Ariana Grande concert in May 2017 (aftermath pictured) have been denied taxpayer money to help their cases

Ali QC and Richard Wright QC at two separate court appearances. His solicitors are Yasmin and Shaid, who are based in Leeds and have previously run up bills defending terrorists of more than ÂŁ3million. The Ministry of Justice argues all defendants have the right to legal aid if they cannot afford lawyers in a criminal trial. But the government department says bereaved families at inquest's do not have the same rights and therefore do not automati-

cally qualify. A spokesman claimed they still could be granted funding ahead of the inquest in April. Hashem Abedi, who is from Manchester but found in Libya, will go on trial at the Old Bailey on November 5 charged with 22 counts of murder - one for each of the attack's victims. He is also accused of one count of attempted murder encompassing all the other victims and one count of conspiring with his brother to cause explosions.

Buckinghamshire fatal air crash: Coroner calls for safety devices A coroner has written to an aviation regulator requesting small planes and choppers should be fitted with safety devices after four people were killed. A mid-air crash between a helicopter and a plane happened above Waddesdon Manor, Buckinghamshire in 2017. Crispin Butler, coroner, told the Civil Aviation Authority "action should be taken to prevent future deaths". His report said collision avoidance and carbon monoxide devices ought to be fitted to such aircraft.

in brief

From left: Jaspal Singh Bahra, Saavan Singh Mundae, Mike Green and Nguyen Thanh Trung were killed in the crash

Jaspal Bahra, Saavan Mundae, Mike Green and Nguyen Thanh Trung died following the collision between a Cessna 152 aeroplane and a Guimbal Cabri

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G2 helicopter at about 12:15 GMT on 17 November. It was heard at the inquest that the aircraft were in each other's blind spots. Mr Butler, senior coroner for Buckinghamshire, said without a "requirement to carry inter-craft electronic proximity warning or collision avoidance devices... small craft would remain at risk". And although there was no evidence that exposure to carbon monoxide before or during the flight played a part, he urged for it be

mandatory for light aircraft to carry monitors or warning devices. "There remains a risk that pilots and passengers may be exposed to carbon monoxide in such craft which might directly put them at risk of death or might put the craft at risk of collision," he said. The Cessna and the helicopter took off from Wycombe Park Airfield about half an hour before the crash. Capt Green, 74, of Long Lane, Newbury, was in the helicopter giving a lesson to Vietnamese military officer Capt Trung, 32. Mr Bahra, 27, a flight instructor from Wembley, was giving a lesson to Mr Mundae, 18, a student from Richmond, Greater London, in the small plane. Post-mortem examinations found the men died from multiple injuries. The coroner previously ruled the crash was an accident.

The aircraft collided over Waddesdon Manor on 17 November 2017

West Yorkshire Police appealed directly to the eight men, urging them to contact the force

Police have released photographs of eight men they want to trace over trouble that flared during a Cricket World Cup match at Headingley. Fans clashed inside and outside the ground during the game between Pakistan and Afghanistan on 29 June. Police said it involved a large group and three arrests were made. Officers said they had "pinpointed four incidents of violent disorder" and were "keen to identify the suspects" after scouring CCTV and social media footage. Videos filmed by the public showed a group trying to break through the gates between the main road and the stadium. Fans were also seen jumping over the fence that surrounds the ground and gaining access to the concourse behind the Western Terrace. Two of the arrested men were released without charge and the third one is currently on bail pending further inquiries. West Yorkshire Police said it was called to the stadium shortly before noon on the day of the game following reports of a disturbance at the ground. Det Sup Jaz Khan said the footage showed "people were assaulted during these incidents" despite no injuries being reported. "Violent scenes like this are completely unprecedented at a cricket match. It caused understandable concern to the law-abiding majority who were there to enjoy this high-profile sports events in peace. We simply cannot allow behaviour such as this to go unchallenged and we need to send a very clear message about how unacceptable it is for people to involve themselves in crowd trouble at sports events and that there will be consequences," he said.

LINCOLNSHIRE NON-MUSLIM GIRLS ASKED TO WEAR HIJAB FOR A DAY Non-Muslim girls in Lincolnshire are being asked to wear a hijab for a day to raise awareness of discrimination. Ghada Mohamed said she came up with the idea in response to a number of incidents where girls wearing hijabs were subjected to abuse. Ghada Mohamed wants secThe campaigner, who is a member of the Lincoln Muslim ondary schools in Lincolnshire Sisters Forum, said it would lead to get involved to help raise awareness of discrimination to better understanding. She hopes secondary schools across the county will sign up. Talking about the abuse some girls have faced, Mrs Mohamed said: "If they have been attacked or abused it's not because other children are bad. It's just because they don't have the knowledge." The hijab day, to be held in November, will help non-Muslim children learn more about what it is like to wear a hijab, and the reasons behind it, she said. One Muslim girl said the hijab was part of her identity, but wearing it sometimes made her feel like she was not part of the community. She said she supported the idea of a hijab day. "They would see it's just a piece of cloth covering our heads. It would be a big step to letting people know it's just a headscarf - nothing else," she said.

ESAM AYAD DEATH: FOUR CHARGED WITH MURDER OVER MAN SHOT IN FACE Three men and a teenager have been charged with murder after a man was shot in the face. Esam Ayad, (pictured) 26, from Harlow in Essex, was seriously injured in an attack in Ogard Road, Hoddesdon, on 4 December 2018. The father of two young children later died in hospital. The four appeared before St Albans' Magistrates Court on Thursday and were remanded in custody to appear before St Albans Crown Court on 28 October.


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Brought to you by Tesco Bank Terms and Conditions: Cannot be redeemed for cash. The discount is not available in conjunction with any other offer for the MoneyGram service. Tesco Bank is a trading name of Tesco Personal Finance Plc. Tesco Personal Finance Plc is an agent of MoneyGram International Limited in the provision of money transfer services. MoneyGram International Limited is an authorised payment institution regulated in the United Kingdom by the Financial Conduct Authority. MoneyGram® and the globe are marks of MoneyGram.® All other marks are the property of their respective owners. ©2019 MoneyGram. The promoter of this advert is Tesco Personal Finance Plc. Registered Office: 2 South Gyle Crescent, Edinburgh EH12 9FQ.


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Yuva Unstoppable gives wings to her dream to become a Gynaecologist Beauty isn’t about having a pretty face. It’s about having a pretty mind, a pretty heart and a pretty soul. Izma Banu Saiyyad is a 17 year old, currently pursuing her Medical degree. Her Mom had been suffering from fatal tumor when her gynaecologist refused to diagnose her without payment of fees which were unaffordable. They went from door to door seeking help but only in vain. It was then, She realized the scarcity of generous and sensitive doctors in her community. She never saw her mother so helpless. Seeing her mother on bed with unbearable pain and miseries for 2 months moved her completely and made her determined to become a generous gynaecologist and not to let any other mother suffer what her mother did. Moreover, untimely Demise of her aunt due to cancer strengthened her resolution to serve all mothers who love their children selflessly. She Says – “I am a believer in giving back and helping out in the community. Think Globally but Act Locally because charity begins with our home/community. I believe that the measure of a person’s life is the effect they have on others”. Her father is a teacher and couldn't afford her expensive tuition fees. Yuva Unstoppable (India based NGO) when saw her diligence and hard work coupled with a strong need to support, It gave her a educational scholarship so that she won't have to compromise in her education. Until her 10th Grade, she studied in local language in India. Despite that, being ambitious to join the top medical institute of India, She fought against the language barrier and prepared for entrance examinations in English medium Her father consistently motivated and mentored her and she prepared with an unwavering conviction. She would sleep only for 4 hours a day. During the journey, She suffered from a severe allergy for 4 months. Despite the misery, She won't leave her books and  would study in hospital while being treated. She scored extraordinary 99.99 percentile in her 12th Grade and ranked 1st in entire state board in India. She exemplifies the power of unwavering conviction, persistence and will power. Her inspiring story motivates Yuva Unstoppable to empower many like her.  She is indeed a epitome of courage and kindness who strongly follows Gandhiji’s philosophy on – “Be the change you wish to see in the world” It is the second consecutive year when a educational scholarship holder from YUVA Unstoppable has topped the board in examination in India. Yuva Unstoppable has benefited over 5,00,000 underprivileged children across 40 cities of India. Yuva has been working with 100 top corporate (Coke, 3M, IBM, Google, Adani, Unicef, United Way, and others) and have transformed 1000 government schools (better toilets, improved drinking water, scholarships, digital literacy, value based  training's, etc.).  KPMG audits finances & Deloitte audits processes. In May 2019, Yuva’s Founder Amitabh Shah was the youngest Indian to win the International Ellis Island Award given previously to George Bush, Bill Clinton, Rosa Parks & others. In 2015, we received, Prince’s Prize for Innovative Philanthropy by Prince Albert II of Monaco.  In 2017, Yuva was awarded with IBM Impact grant. Statesman like Prime Minister Modi & Late President of India Dr. APJ Kalam; Bollywood Legends like Akshay Kumar, R Balki, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra; Cricketers VVS Laxman & Sir Ian Botham; Authors Jeffrey Archer & Chetan Bhagat; Global leaders like Paul Polman (Unilever CEO), Gautam Adani, amongst others  have participated in Yuva initiatives to inspire all.    Our vision is to impact 10,000 schools & 10,000 Scholarships in the next 5 years.      

Sponsored Charity of Asian Achievers Awards 2019

To know more about Yuva Unstoppable please visit www.yuvaunstoppable.org.

Mayor of London urges Home Office to reduce salary requirement for work visa London's Mayor Sadiq Khan is urging the minimum salary to appoint foreign skilled workers to be reduced to £21,000 from £30,000. After Brexit, government plans suggest EU migrants will be treated in the same way as the non-EU migrants. Sadiq Khan has therefore called on the Government to devolve immigration powers to City Hall, helping ‘fast-track’ applications to address skill shortages. He is also reportedly supporting a new freelance visa to boost the creative industries in London. Under Mr Khan’s plans, London would create a register of industries facing skill shortages, with visa applications from workers serving these sectors prioritised. The Mayor said that he

believes that immigration changes should support London’s potential as a global city. Research from City Hall claims extending the current rules to EU migrants would damage London’s economy. Construction, Care and hospitality would be worst affected under the new system, the study found. The Harrow Times reported that there are currently 150,000 EU workers in jobs paid below £30,000 visa threshold – with a quarter of these in construction and hospitality alone. And 57 percent of businesses in the capital think proposed visa changes would worsen skill shortages, according to polling from the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Mayor Khan reportedly said: “If the Government’s

proposed immigration changes go ahead, then I’m fearful for the impact they’ll have on the fabric of our city. “The impact on the construction sector would make the housing crisis worse. And the impact on public services, including our schools and the NHS, could have devastating consequences for years to come. “The new Prime Minister should instead fully recognise the positive

impact immigration and Freedom of Movement has had in London and the UK.” But the Prime Minister wants an Australian points based system to continue. A spokesperson for the Home Office said, “As the Prime Minister has said, he wants an immigration system that attracts the brightest and best talent from around the world, which is based on what someone can contribute rather than where they come from.”

Condolence meeting held for Late Chhotubhai Pattni A condolence meeting was held for Chhotubhai Pattni, patron of Gujarat Hindu Society-Preston. Over 100 members attended to pay their respect and also meet the immediate family and offer them comfort. Rohitbhai expressed his thankyou to GHS for organising this condolence meeting in memory of his late father Chottubhai Pattni. At critical time when the society was struggling to raise funds to complete the

refurbishment, Chhotubhai gave a donation of £501 and signed a blank cheque to be used in emergency. Since that day

Chhotubhai has been an inspiration for the society. A barrister by profession, he helped many Hindu organisations with writing of their

constitutions. He took a lead in helping Sanatan Sewa Mandal Dwarka. This organisation had started with nil assets and 2 children led by Swami Keshwanandji. Today Sanatan Sewa Mandal has a school and gives education to 1000 children. Chhotubhai was a philanthropist and played a key role during the redevelopment of the GHS Community centre/temple in 1996/2000.

Indian-origin doctor to display recycled artwork in exhibition She has since develAn Indian-origin oped her own techdoctor from Bolton nique of using heat, will be displaying bonding the fabric her fabric collages scraps to the canvas, in a solo exhibition wants to make peoin London this ple aware of the September. damaging effects of Recently retired textile and fabric hospital consultant waste. Her crehistopathologist Dr Dr Aruna Mene ations show how Aruna Mene, who beautiful objects can be prowas born in Nagpur, has duced from it. lived in the UK for over 30 Aruna, who was awardyears and will show upto 35 ed a certificate of highly pieces of her unique work in a solo exhibition at Nehru commended in the category Centre, Mayfair, London of art, film and media as an from September 23 to 27, inspirational woman in the 2019. She will also be disNorth West, has organised playing crafty things like rag workshops on rag rugs and has a fabric collage workrugs, fabric rope baskets, shop planned for the future. cushion covers and possibly She volunteers at The wearable art - all from fabric Ferns Primary Academy in waste and recycled textiles. Farnworth -a socially There will be art greeting deprived area of Bolton cards from images of her and teaches fabric collage, collages and some embroialready completing three dered greeting cards. projects with them with “My mother was a very more planned in the next innovative and artistic few months. woman and I was always All profits from the sale surrounded by fabrics and that triggered my interest in of her collages and craft textiles from a young age,” work are donated to various recalls Aruna, who started charities in the UK and India including Bolton making fabric collages, iniHospice and the Leprosy tially as mixed media. For treatment and rehabilitathe last 12 years she has been tion centre, 'Anandwan'. making pure fabric collages.

Lone skier fabric collage on canvas

Quran Encyclopaedia launched at packed event in Manchester On Sunday 4th August 2019, The Sheriden Suite in Manchester was packed to the rafters for the launch of a Quranic encyclopaedia by the internationally renowned author and scholar Dr Muhammad Tahir-ulQadri. The event was attended by over 200 British scholars and Imams and over 2000 British Muslims. The nearly 2000 strong audience heard the author of the Quranic Encyclopaedia give a detailed lecture about it. He emphasised that the encyclopaedia will assist scholars, academics, students and

the general public in gaining access to what the Quran says on a large variety of subjects, from the creation of Man, the composition of the universe and many other scientific subjects to morals, manners and day to day life. He especially said that the encyclopaedia ensures that extremists cannot misuse verses of the Quran for their own ends. The many Muslim Scholars and Imams present were truly excited about the encyclopaedia as it will make their lives a lot easier in finding the required verses from the Quran.


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10 - 16 August 2019

Former Virgin Money boss chooses Supt Bhupinder Rai is new LPA commander of Reading Salesforce opportunity over BoE Superintendent Bhupinder Rai has taken over as local police area commander of Reading. She took over charge from Superintendent Stan Gilmour who has moved to Head of Protecting Vulnerable People. Supt Rai moves to her new role following her time as head of force CID. She joined Thames Valley police in March 1992 as a police officer in Slough. Throughout her career she has worked in a number of specialist roles, including as a schools officer, a detective sergeant tasked to set up the prisoner handling unit, a neighbourhood policing

inspector and as a detective chief inspector dealing with complex investigations. Throughout her time at Thames Valley, equality and diversity has remained a keen interest with Supt Rai being the chair and deputy chair of TVP’s support association for ethnic minority staff (SAME) for over 10 years, stepping down in 2014/15. Supt Rai continues her work and is currently the BAME lead for the Police Superintendents’ Association of England & Wales. On her new appointment, Supt Rai said: “I am delighted to have been

appointed as the Commander of Reading. “Reading LPA already has a very well established relationship with partners and the local community, I plan to build on these existing relationships and work with the local community to reduce crime and disorder to ensure Reading remains a safe place to live and work.”

Former Virgin Money chief executive Dame Jayne-Anne Gadhia has passed the opportunity to join Bank of England financial policy committee, to instead head up the business of software giant Salesforce, which is planning to inject £2.05bn into its UK operations, in the next five years. Gadhia would begin her new role on 1 October, though if she joined BoE, her appointment to the committee would have meant it had three woman members out of 13. Gadhia in a CityAM report said, “I’ve admired Salesforce from afar for a long time. This is a different kind of business, with deeply held values and a true focus on transforming the

experience of every customer through cutting edge technology. “I’m looking forward to working with the team as we continue to invest and support Salesforce’s growing customer base in UKI.” Gadhia, who has also worked for Royal Bank of Scotland, was recognised in the last New Year’s Honours list for her contribution to financial services and women in the finance industry. Bank of England reportedly said, “We are of course sorry that Jayne-Anne Gadhia won’t be taking up her role as an external member on the Financial Policy Committee. We fully understand her decision and wish her well for the future.”

Salesforce co-chief executives Marc Benioff Keith Block in a statement said, “Jayne-Anne is one of the most respected CEOs in the UK and we are thrilled to welcome her to Salesforce. “The UKI is our largest market outside the US and with Jayne-Anne’s leadership we are well positioned to move into the next stage of growth and success for Salesforce, our customers, partners and communities.”

Leicestershire Police and Crime Commissioner Lord Willy Bach has announced the availability of fresh funding worth £100,000 for community organisations which can help steer young people away from crime. The PCC has received £347,000 from the Home Office's Early Intervention Youth Fund to invest in services which prevent vulnerable young people from turning to crime - and is

making £100,000 available immediately through his Prevention Fund grants programme. The grant scheme will see funding allocated in two levels; up to £9,999pa and between £10,000 and £25,000. Funding is available for projects which engage and support young people who are on the edge of or at risk of criminal involvement. They will also need to

offer participants suitable role models from within the community who command trust and respect from the young people with whom they work. The application process opens on 5 August and will close on 1 October 2019. Applicants must be able to start delivery as soon as possible and by January at the latest. Successful projects will be notified by 1 November 2019.

VFS Global becomes the first company to process 200mn visa applications New funding boost for youth mentorship projects VFS Global, a leading visa outsourcing and technology partner for several governments and diplomatic missions worldwide, has achieved another milestone by processing a record 200 million visa applications. Set up in 2001, the company touched its first 100 million applications milestone in May 2015. Since then, the next 100 million applications were processed over a record four-year period.

In 2018 alone, VFS Global processed 26.7 million applications globally – the most number of visa applications processed in any single year, registering a 16 per cent increase year-onyear. Commenting on this achievement, Zubin Karkaria, CEO, VFS Global Group, said, “We take pride in this achievement of processing our 200 millionth visa application, with 100 million of these processed in

a timespan of the last four years. We are grateful for the co-operation of the 62 client governments we serve – 18 of which were added in last four years, pointing to the trust and credibility we have built since we started this journey in 2001. We remain committed to further enhancing the overall ease and convenience in visa applications for our end customers through continued focus on developing innovative visa services.”

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Modi takes major constitutional decisions about Jammu and Kashmir Tej K Tikoo The bold decisions taken by the Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Government in India, vis a vis the State of Jammu and Kashmir, were long overdue and are likely to have far reaching consequences for the whole subcontinent in general and for India and Pakistan in particular. Removal of Articles 370 and 35A of the Indian constitution, has always been an article of faith with the BJP. Decisions taken to declare Jammu and Kashmir provinces as union territory (with legislature) and Ladakh province (without a legislature) are unprecedented. The BJP government wasted little time to take the bull by the horn after being returned to power with a bigger mandate in the recently concluded general elections. It is pertinent to mention that Article 370 had been incorporated into the Indian constitution by the Constituent Assembly of India which drafted Independent India’s constitution, immediately after the British granted independence to India and newly formed Pakistan. At that time, keeping the nature of this article in mind, as also the existing circumstances, the founding fathers had put this article in the category of “Transient and Temporary Provisions “of the constitution. However, over a period of time, this Article became a political tool to be used by its proponents to gain political mileage. In the process, a purely temporary provision, meant to serve a temporary purpose, was allowed to attain a near permanent status, with grave consequences for the nation. On the one hand, the Kashmiri politicians used it to rouse public sentiment by declaring that it was essential to maintain their identity, and on the other, they used the same provision to gain and retain political power; a power which they greatly misused to fill their own coffers, while paying lip service to the overall development of

the state. Over the last seventy years, this provision helped build a separatist mindset among Kashmiris and prevented Kashmir’s complete integration with the rest of the country (mentally and physically), creating political turmoil and instability in the state on recurring basis. Pakistan exploited the situation in 1989-90, to create violent insurgency that rages even today. Pakistan gradually handed over the reins of the armed uprising in Kashmir to radical Islamists, who turned it into a jihad. The worst sufferers of this armed uprising were the miniscule population of the aborigines of Kashmir, the Kashmiri Pandits, as the jihadis decided to Islamize the Valley in keeping with their philosophy. Article 35 A, on the other hand, had been inserted into the constitution surreptitiously, without a debate in the Parliament, without a discussion in the Cabinet and through a Presidential ordinance. This article defined the status of the permanent resident of the state and his/her privileges. With no investment taking place in J&K, as no non-state subject can own property there, Art 370/35 A has adversely impacted all aspects of development in the state; infrastructure, education, health, social development, employment, industry, etc. Kashmiris themselves have suffered because of Article 370. As, the Indian Home Minister, Sh. Amit Shah, said during the debate in the Parliament today, “Repeal of Article will take the state on the road to

development and within a short time, J&K will become India’s most developed state.” It is pertinent to mention that those who have opposed the repeal of Article 370 constitute 16 % of the State’s geographical area and only 40 % of its population, whereas all others have supported it. Another provision in today’s bill envisaged bifurcation of the State of Jammu and Kashmir, keeping in mind the special and unique requirements of each region. Kashmir and Jammu will now be union territories with a state legislature and Ladakh too will become a union territory, but without a state legislature. For long, people in Ladakh region, mostly Buddhists and Muslims, nursed a strong grievance that they were being lorded over by the Kashmiri politicians who always wielded political power. Even to resolve small issues they had to rush to Srinagar/Jammu as the state capital was either at Srinagar(summer) or at Jammu (winter). With the road between Leh and Srinagar remaining cut-off for nearly six months in a year, Ladakhis suffered immense hardships. Now, after gaining the status of a union territory, most of their issues will get resolved locally. Besides, with direct access to New Delhi, the development of Ladakh will be put on fast track. In my opinion, the historic decisions taken by the Modi Government were long overdue and will go a long way in restoring peace in the state and putting it on the fast track of development.

About the author: [Col. Tej Kumar Tikoo (Retd), PhD, is the President of All India Kashmiri Samaj and an expert on Kashmir as well as Defense, security issues. He is the author of the first publication documenting the plight of Kashmiri Pandits, "Kashmir: Its Aboriginees and their Exodus". He was born at Srinagar (Kashmir) on April 15, 1950. After completing his school and college education at Srinagar, he joined the Indian Army, being commissioned into 1st Battalion of the newly raised Naga Regiment on August 22, 1971. Soon thereafter, he found himself fighting the 1971 Indo-Pak war in the eastern sector, which resulted in the creation of Bangladesh. As an infantryman, Col. Tikoo spent a major portion of his thirty-four years of service in the army on the line of control in Jammu and Kashmir or fighting insurgency operations. Col. Tikoo is a graduate of the prestigious Defense Services Staff College and has been an instructor in the Senior Command wing of the Army War College at Mhow. He retired in 2004 and has an M.Sc. in defense studies from Madras University, and a PhD in defense studies.]

Sardar Walk applauds 'The Iron Man of India's' achievements The flagship work of Sardar Patel was recognised by a gathering of his admirers at the foot steps of his London home in Aldridge Road Villas In London. Sardar Walk, organised by Sardar Patel Memorial Society (SPMS) UK was to recognise his achievements from where his professional career began. It was also to raise fund for Sangat Advice Centre, based in Harrow. The walk from Sardar's London residence to Wormwood Scrubs, was in memories of the monumental work done by Sardar, as we now know him. The group of walkers met at the door step of his London home to recognise his stay in United Kingdom. Neighbours and residents of the house came out to shake hands and learn more about the achievements of Vallabhai Patel and the significance of that house that they occupy. Rohit Vadhwana, First Secretary (Economic) Indian High Commission in London, paid tribute to

Mrs Mona Vadhwana with another participant

Ribbon cutting by Rohit Vadhwana, neighbours and residents and the Special Committee Convener and colleagues (Pic courtesy: Raj D Bakrania, Prmediapix)

Sardar before cutting the ribbon, he said, “Sardar’s career was a humble beginning. His determination brought him to UK to study law at the Middle Temple. His achievements are unforgettable and I am proud to recognise his contribution to India.” The Chairman of SPMS, CB Patel said, “This is a momentous day, an honour to recognise his (Sardar’s) contribution and one wonders, what would he have made out of Brexit today.” Walking in memory and in the Spirit of Unity the walk began along the sleepy picturesque lazy Grand Canal to Wormwood Scrubs. The walk of two mile made up of mixed ages was long enough not to forget yet so enjoyable. Some asked for it to become an annual walk.

The walk had also been aimed to give a chance to became more active, find companionship, raise funds for Sangat Advisory Centre, ending with a picnic. Walkers paid their own tributes to Sardar. One remembered how Sardar studied his law on a shoe string budget, living on bread and milk. He would spend as much as 16 hrs in the libraries at Inner Temple, as he could not afford to buy the books and then walk home. His life is an inspiration to all for what can be achieved. It was motivational to stand on the very steps and the ground he once walked, one said and his tireless efforts to unit India has made him truly ‘The Iron Man of India’ forever standing as the tallest statue in the world in Gujarat.

Ranil Jayawardena appointed as Parliamentary Vice Chairman for the Conservative party Prime Minister Boris Johnson has appointed Ranil Jayawardena, MP for North East Hampshire as the Parliamentary Vice Chairman for the Conservative party. Jayawardena was born and brought up in London. He graduated from the London School of Economics (LSE) and worked for Lloyds banking Group, rising to become a senior manager. He was first elected as an MP in May 2015, and re-elected in 2017. His father Nalin is of Sri Lankan origin, who moved to the UK in 1978 to pursue a career in accountancy. His mother, Indira, has Indian heritage. He has two siblings. Jayawardena is married to a solicitor and has two daughters. Jayawardena served as a councillor of Basingstoke and Deane in Hampshire from 2008 to 2015. During his time as a councillor, he was also the Cabinet Member for Finance and Property, before being made Deputy Leader of the Council, where he had a par-

Boris Johnson with Ranil Jayawardena

ticular focus on urban revitalisation and economic regeneration. He went on to be elected as the MP for the constituency at the 2015 general election with 35,573 votes (65.9% share) and a majority of 29,916. This was the largest margin of victory by any Conservative MP in the election. During the election, the candidate for the UK Independence party was suspended after appearing to make a death threat towards Jayawardena. In his 'maiden speech', he outlined his belief in the rule of law, in human rights, and in equality before the law being matched by equality in opportunity, but contended that human rights were not invented in 1998

and that rights must be balanced by responsibilities. In the 2015–17 Parliament, he was part of the Home Affaits Committee and the International Trade Committee. In January 2018, In January 2018, Jayawardena was made Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Ministerial team at the Department for Work and Pensions. Commenting on this appointment, Chairman of the Conservative Party James Cleverly MP, said: “I’m absolutely delighted to welcome a wealth of talent to the rest of the team at CCHQ. These new appointments bring years’ worth of experience to the Party and I look forward to working with all of them.”


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ONE INDIA, ARTICLE 370 ANOMALY OUT Continued from page 1

The historic revocation has been met by jubilation in the UK by the Kashmiri Pandits and other Indians. Many parts of the UK, especially areas that are dominated by Indians such as Leicester, North West London have seen celebrations to rejoice this initiative. From the Valley to the UK But what is Article 370, what is its origin and what implications will it's withdrawal have on local citizens? Following the messy Partition of 1947, India and Pakistan have kept Kashmir a boiling pot with both countries attempting to assert territorial claims, and engaging in ceasefire breaches. In 1947, after the UK had withdrawn from the South Asian countries, Kashmir’s Hindu ruler Hari Singh was fervently hoping to keep control of his kingdom. However, Hari Singh soon found his position becoming more and more untenable. On the other side of border after the partition, Pakistani PM Liaquat Ali Khan began making plans for armed intervention in Kashmir using "demobilised Army personnel, willing serving army personnel and tribesmen". The leadership of the North West Frontier Province (NWFP) was also tapped with a view to mobilising lashkars for the planned invasion.The attacks finally occurred in end-October 1947. On October 22, the maharaja's soldiers were crushed and slaughtered by tribesmen from NWFP who were marching towards Srinagar. He had approached the then Prime Minister of India Jawaharlal Nehru with the intent of joining India and requested the Government of India to send in the military and India accepted the offer of accession. In the subsequent years, the two most significant concessions given to Kashmir in the Indian constitution were Article 370 and Article 35A. Article 370 was inserted through Presidential Proclamation in 1954 and gave Indianadministered Kashmir autonomy in all areas except finance, defense, communication, and foreign policy. Article 35A gave only “permanent residents” of Kashmir the right to own property. “Owing to increasing disturbance, quite a significant proportion of youngsters have moved out of the Valley and left the state of Jammu and Kashmir. “Article 370 also barred women of J&K from marrying anyone outside of the State for the reasons of their children staking inheritance claims in the State. This was an extremely regressive decision.

“I think it is a historic moment for every Indian and the Government has undone the wrong that was done 70 years ago and scrapping Article 370 is imperative for the integration of the country,” says Vinod Tikoo, a Kashmiri Pandit settled in the UK ever since the 2000s. Over the years, several debates on Kashmir have been held in the UK Parliament where MPs have urged for open dialogue between India and Pakistan considering the diaspora communities that are settled in the UK. Conservative MP Bob Blackman has long campaigned for the rights of Kashmiri Pandits who were forced to flee the region. “Pandits must be guaranteed right to return”: Bob Blackman “I strongly support the revocation of article 370. Kashmiri Pandits must be guaranteed right of return

prohibition of external investment in the State which according to many Indian politicians has led to lack of jobs, rampant unemployment, the radicalisation of youth and a breakdown in the State's tourism. “Jammu and Kashmir has always been an integral part of India and A370 has always been an anomaly: it has held the area back by starving it of investment, through the prevention of external ownership of land. “The valley provides excellent opportunities for agricultural and cultural handicraft exports, the development of hydro-electric power and tourism. “Narendra Modi has again shown proper and strong leadership in honouring the manifesto of the BJP – now is the time to properly integrate Jammu and Kashmir into the Indian constitution. Most important, however, is clearing the area of terrorists – high security is paramount,” said Bob Blackman. Conservative Friends' of India supports Modi's decision

after they were the victims of ethnic cleansing and this move should prevent any other minority groups being forced to leave the Kashmir Valley,” said Bob Blackman. One of the main drawbacks of Article 370 was the

Conservative Friends of India in a statement said, “The BJP Government led by Hon. Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, has delivered its manifesto commitment of removing Article 370 and 35A which gave the Kashmiris a special status in India. Under the provisions, the Kashmiris could enjoy every right in India but Indians could not enjoy any right in Kashmir. “On Monday 5th August the Indian government announced through a Presidential order the revo-

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cation of Art 370 and Article 35A of the Indian Constitution which had created division in India. This truly now makes the State of Jammu and Kashmir part of one India. “Unfortunately this status had the effect of holding back Jammu and Kashmir from the benefits from the development seen across the rest of India. The Article also prevented the unity of India as it meant that Jammu and Kashmir had its own constitution, a separate flag and independence over all matters except the three matters of foreign affairs, defence and communications. It also gave the wrong signal to Pakistan that India was not sure of the status of India until this historic declaration, made on 5th August 2019. “Former Finance Minister, Mr Arun Jaitley, wrote on Twitter in relation to the revocation of Article 370 and Article 35A , that this would lead to "more jobs and more revenue" for people in Jammu and Kashmir. "Separate status led to separatism ... a historical wrong has been undone today". “Jammu and Kashmir will now be governed by the laws applicable throughout India and everyone will be equal under the rule of law and more importantly,

women will also enjoy equal status. “India's Home Minister, Mr Amit Shah, said in Parliament, "Right to Education is not implemented in Kashmir; why should valley children not get the benefit of education. Healthcare is crippling in Jammu and Kashmir as no private hospital could be set up due to Article 370, Article 35A. We will make Jammu and Kashmir the most developed State". “The Government of India by revoking this historic wrong has also paid a great tribute to the brave men and women of India who have been defending the integrity of Jammu and Kashmir through their supreme sacrifices since Independence, but had no rights accorded to them under the Article 370. They will now be able to enjoy every right under the Constitution of India.” “This is not about the economy, it is about ideology”: Shabana Mahmood However, Shabana Mahmood, MP for Birmingham, Ladywood who has been one of the few Kashmiri origin MPs in the UK with her ancestral roots from Mirpur has been one of

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it is incumbent on the UK and other UN powers to come together, draw a line in the sand and to de-escalate the crisis.” Today, the political and security status in Kashmir has a domino effect on not just India and Pakistan. But the Centre's increased power in the two newly formed Union Territories will be moniored by China and what happens in Kashmir also resonates in the UK.

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the few politicians who are concerned about the prospect of changing demographics and ethnicity in the Muslim dominated state. She said, “Arun Jaitley’s claims on the economy are offensive fiction. Let’s be clear - this is not about the economy, it is about ideology. There are outstanding UN resolutions in place, and


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Belated but Bold Amit Shah, Home Minister of Bharat, announced today (5th Aug) an order by the President Ram Nath Kovind to dissolve at once the State of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories of (1) Ladakh and (2) Jammu and Kashmir and removed special status clauses. Ladakh will be governed without legislature in a similar manner as Chandigarh while Jammu and Kashmir will be governed by Legislative Assembly of the State called Sardar-i-Riyasat in the manner as Delhi State. These actions will attract new investment and talent in the area for the betterment of long suffering residents and make it a truly integral part of Bharat. Let us hope that with this belated but bold presidential order (The Constitution Order, 2019 – C.O. 272) and following successful legislation, article 370, 35A, J&K constitution and flag will become irrelevant and buried as history’s foot notes. History will judge the actions of Nehru and Maharaja Hari Singh under the guidance of Mountbatten on 26th October 1947 as a blunder of gigantic proportion. We have not heard much discussion about the Modi Government’s historical action in June 2015 regarding 102 Bhartiya enclaves within Bangladesh and 71 Bangladeshi enclaves within Bharat. The people in these enclaves were stateless for almost 70 years as they cannot get any passport or avail of any state benefit from either state. Modi, along with Bangladesh Authority, took a bold decision to allow the residents to choose either country as their own and they were peacefully transferred to their chosen country and the entire process was completed by 30th November 2015 eliminating enclaves and with it, the suffering of residents. This is what British Raj should have done in 1947 which would have avoided partition genocide. After the Triple Talaq bill which liberated millions of women from marital injustice became law on 1st August, the Modi and Shah duo still has the two outstanding problems of Ayodhya and Uniform Code to work on. Narsibhai Patel New Malden

Swatantrata (Freedom) for Indian Muslim Women On the auspicious day of Tuesday Ashad Vad 13th Vikram Samvant 2075 (30th July 2019) the Rajyasabha (upper house) of the Indian parliament passed The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill 2019. The Lok Sabha or the Lower House has already approved this bill.This means the end of instant talaq in the Muslim community. With this Bhartiya Muslim women will be freed from the shackles of one sided divorce. Now Muslim men wanting to divorce their wives will now have to go through proper legal channel to get one and their assets and liabilities will be shared equally. It also means Bhartiya Muslim women have received swatantra, something that was long overdue. This is one step towards “one country, one law”. Bhartiya Muslim women will forever be grateful to the Bharatiya Janta Party for this brave move. Chuni Chavda By email

500 letters The publication of this letter will make it my 500th letter published so far mainly in Asian Voice and some in Gujarat Samachar! No mean feat this. I am sure the editorial board will agree with me that this deserves some recognition from the ABPL Board. I would therefore like to put forward the following suggestion for consideration by the ABPL Board. There are about a dozen or so regular contributors to the “Your Voice” column of Asian Voice and that many to “Tamari Vaat” column of Gujarat Samachar. How about we all meet up at ABPL’s offices and put the face to the names which we are so accoustmed to? We can then share views and opinions face to face and also meet representatives of both AV and GS. I had the privilege of chatting with CB, albeit over the wires, when he was a guest on Kanjibhai Ghedia’s Gujarati programme on NuSound Radio. I have also met others at our various social gatherings. I would be glad to make acquaintace with Rupanjana and others while enjoying ABPL’s hospitality in the form of a cuppa at Hoxton House! At that gathering we can be presented with a certificate or some token in appreciation of our loyalty and dedication. I must add that the electronic versions of AV and GS which I receive by e-mail are very useful indeed! I could get up to speed on what is happening in England and around the world. Dinesh Sheth Newbury Park, Ilford

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If you are fed up with foxes invading your garden, defecating all over, scratching and shedding their body-infested termites on your lawn, simply sprinkle drops of your urine from a container at their favourite entry points as well as along the fence and other spots they visit. The smell of human urine puts them off and they will stay away. If it rains, apply more urine. Rudy Otter By email

‘Raksha’ means protection and ‘Bandhan’ means bound. Thus 'Raksha Bandhan' means 'Bond of Protection'. On Raksha Bandhan day, the sisters tie a 'rakhi' (a silken thread) on their brothers' wrist. This is a symbol of their love and respect for their brothers. Rakhi also signifies that the sisters pray for long life and well-being of their brothers. The brothers, in turn take a vow to always take care and protect their sisters from all evils and dangers. As a token of their love, the brothers either give cash or other gifts to their sisters. The festival was actually started by our Nobel laureate, Rabindranath Tagore by tying a rakhi on a fellow countryman's wrist. He did this to promote brotherhood and equality among the citizens of India. Since then, this festival is celebrated with great spirit and emotion by the people of India. Every year all the brothers and sisters look forward to this festival with great zeal and excitement. Traditionally, this festival is celebrated by our Hindu brothers and sisters. In an era which is marked by movements for women’s liberation and rights, Raksha Bandhan can be celebrated as a festival that promotes brotherly-sisterly concerns and appreciates the complimentary gifts of a man and woman. Raksha Bandhan is known by different names in different parts of the country. But however the essence of the festival remains the same and that is to celebrate the sacred brother-sister bond. This year, Raksha Bandhan is being celebrated on August 15. It coincides with Independence Day. Jubel D'Cruz, Mumbai, India

GPs need more time The situation is getting worse for the GPs in treating patients. They want more safe time to do so. They fear misdiagnosing patients due to short appointments which One in three GPs admitted. Many NHS doctors said consultancy times of around ten minutes put patients at risk and they would like to have ‘safe’ time frame of between 16 and 20 minutes. In Europe they have 16 minutes. A poll of 200 GPs by law firm Slater and Gordon found four in five felt they did not always have enough time to make a proper diagnosis, 55 per cent in fear of missing serious health issues and 37 per cent worried about prescribing the wrong treatment. GPs in the UK have an average of 41.5 patient contacts every day – 60% more than the number considered safe by European GPs according to Pulse. A survey of 900 GPs reveals that more than one in five GPs have more than 50 daily patient contacts, including faceto-face and telephone consultations, home visits and e-consultations. Some GPs said they had up to 70 patient contacts a day – with others saying that the pressure has forced them to resign or give up partnerships. However, a leading European GP forum has recommended no more than 25 contacts a day. The BMA's GP Committee called for a limit to the number of consultations a GP carries out each day in its Urgent Prescription manifesto for general practice last year, but nothing has come of it. A Pulse investigation last year revealed that patient demand is increasing at the same time as the number of GPs is decreasing – meaning GPs will have to work an extra two hours a day to meet demand by 2022. Dr Richard Vautrey, BMA GP Committee chair, said: 'We know that unmanageable and unsafe workload is the primary reason behind doctors leaving general practice, which is leading to serious issues including practices closing to new patients and other surgeries closing entirely. This workload pressure also means GPs are increasingly suffering from burnout and patients are being put at risk of unsafe care.It is time for the government to wake up and address this issue as their top priority. Baldev Sharma Rayners Lane, Harrow

Are banks above the law! I was horrified readings in leading daily nationals that banks do not hesitate to forge signatures in order to repossess properties, allegedly on legal documents, witness statements which are then used in court hearings to their advantage. UKAR (UK Asset Resolution) was set up by government in wake of financial crisis when banks were rescued by taxpayers, some even nationalized all but in name, still partly owned by tax-payers. Some victims of alleged malpractice have come forward. It seems high ranking bank officials have to sign huge number of documents when going through Courts to repossess properties that may have fallen behind on mortgage payments. So often this task is assigned to junior bank officials who may not have authority to sign, nor would they read and study documents before signing. This practice is known as “Robo-Signing” following scandals in America where unauthorised junior clerks signed a pile of repossession documents. Banks were fined a huge amount of $25 billion in 2012, resulting in compensations paid to millions of victims whose properties were repossessed illegally. It is inconceivable to think that such respectable financial institutions here in Britain can allegedly behave in such a high handed, illegal manner where we put so much emphases on honesty. No wonder there is pressure on Treasury Committee for Parliament to investigate and establish what is the truth behind these allegations, as banks involved have categorially refute these allegations made by clients, was thoroughly investigated and proved to be baseless, according to the information released by banks. In the fast changing financial world where crooks are willing to go to any length to make a quick buck, when it is difficult to decide whom to trust, it is of utmost importance to check one’s documents, such as bank and mortgage, Credit and Debit card Statements, investment bonds, share certificates, as well as insurance and other policies most of us take for granted. I must admit we have received excellence services from banks and building societies, beyond call of duty. But it is better to be safe than sorry! Kumudini Valambia By email

Together we are safer I refer to timely article by Michael Whine in last week’s Asian Voice. This should be an eye opener to our layback, easygoing, fun-loving Hindu community, especially in view of vandalisation of Shree Ram Mandir in Walsall which prompted Mr Whine to write this piece. Such attacks have already happened in London and other cities, Wembley temple was also vandalized not long ago.The threat to minorities, attacks on their religious and cultural institutions, as well as attacks on individual is on the rise. Jewish community learned the lesson after suffering terrible atrocities during WW2 when twenty millions Jews, men, women and children were massacred; Europe was nearly ethnically cleansed by Nazis under mad fanatic Adolf Hitler. Jewish community takes such threats seriously indeed and have taken steps to minimize such attacks. They have trained their youngsters, employed ex-service men to form a roving, active brigade who is able and willing to protect community. Above all, Jewish community is active in politics, with more Jewish Councillors, MPs and Lords than rest of the ethnic minorities put-together! Hindu community should follow into the foot-steps of Jewish community, install close circuit TV, train their youngsters to protect our religious and cultural establishments and above all learn and seek help from Jewish community who are eager and willing to help Hindus, Sikhs, Jains and other ethnic minorities under threat. The Board of Deputies of British Jews have already established close relations with Hindu Forum of Britain, various Hindu Councils, Temples as well as Sikh, Jain and Bahai organizations and other minorities who may face similar threats in this fast changing world. They have also established close, working relations with police and various Christian organizations, churches and influential bodies, as they rightly believe that “Together we are safer” as tiny Jewish community needs support and understanding from other ethnic minorities who face similar threats from extremists. While there is excellent understanding and cooperation between Jewish and Indian community at the top, it badly lacks such cooperation at grassroots level which is indeed a must to cement our bonds and integrate two communities for common good! Bhupendra M. Gandhi By email

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10 - 16 August 2019

Girl, 11, from Pinner achieves University pensions deficit could be £23bn top score on Mensa test n Score beats scores of Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking

Jiya Vaducha, a Year 6 pupil at Pinner Wood School, has shocked her parents after scoring the highest possible marks 162 on British Mensa Cattell III B paper. This puts the 11-year-old in the top 1 % of the population, putting her well above the ‘High IQ benchmark’ of 140. Jiya took her test at the Birkbeck College, London and recalls everyone staring at her when she entered the exam; everyone thought she was in the wrong room, as she was the youngest amongst them. Jiya said, “It was a two and a half hour test, comprising of non-verbal and verbal questions. I am very pleased with my results and look forward to joining the Mensa Society and meeting other members at the organisation’s gathering.” Jiya is an avid reader. Currently, she is reading

Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy and recommends it to anyone who loves science fiction. She has inspired her dad into reading as well. “We have a reading marathon list on the wall, books they have read and would like to read, and I can say Jiya is way ahead of him.” quotes her Mum Bijal. Her parents, Software entrepreneur dad Jignesh and Accountant mum Bijal, said, “We are very proud of Jiya, and this achievement could not have come at a better time. Jiya has been on a roller coaster ride with her secondary school admissions. She was accepted at her first choice school and later her offer was withdrawn after a few days due to an administration error at the super selective renowned grammar school. This had affected Jiya’s confidence and hope this

achievement will make her believe in herself again.” Jiya is very analytical, loves building Lego, solving puzzles, has a keen interest in coding, and helps her dad design mobile Apps. Mensa was founded in England in 1946 by Roland Berrill, a barrister, and Dr Lance Ware, a scientist and lawyer. They had the idea of forming a society for bright people, the only qualification for membership of which was a high IQ.

The pension scheme for university academics would face a deficit of £23bn if it had to be rescued by a government-backed pension lifeboat, the scheme's annual accounts show. The figures will stoke a fierce debate about the Universities Superannuation Scheme's (USS) financial position. It has assets of more than £60bn and provides retirement incomes and savings for about 200,000 UK university staff. The USS said it funds the scheme in a "fair and balanced way". In February and March 2018, academics at 64 universities took industrial action over plans by their employer Universities UK to reduce future benefits and introduce a less-generous pension arrangement. The University and College Union said the new plans would leave them up to £10,000 a year worse off

in retirement, and younger staff would be worst affected, with some losing up to half their pensions. USS's accounts for the year to the end of March 2019, which were published last week, give several different figures for the size of the scheme deficit. The "best estimate" for the scheme is a surplus of £5.2bn, which the accounts say "does not build in prudence and has a 50% chance of being more than is required to pay the benefits, and 50% of being too little". The technical provisions estimate, which includes "prudence", is £7.5bn. The buyout deficit - arrived at by assuming that universities paid an insurance company like the Prudential to take the scheme off their hands and pay out all future benefits - is £63.9bn. The accounts contain another estimate, which follows the standard rules laid

down by the Pension Protection Fund (PPF), which is the backstop scheme for retirement plans that get into financial difficulty. In recent years, the PPF has taken on the schemes of companies such as MG Rover, BHS, Carillion and Hoover. If the PPF took over the university scheme which would see some academics receiving reduced payouts in retirement - the deficit would be £23.1bn. In May, statistician Prof Jan Hutton, a USS trustee, told the Financial Times that she had been thwarted in her efforts to investigate whether the pensions deficit had been exaggerated to justify the cuts. She claimed to have identified a calculation error in the "retirement rate" used to calculate the deficit in November 2017, and she took her concerns to the pensions regulator in March 2018.

Carers bullied by government Labour calls for action on 'catastrophic fall' in adult learning Labour has renewed calls for a "cradle-to-grave" National Education Service, after a "catastrophic fall" in adult learners. Shadow education minister Gordon Marsden has called for action, saying government cuts have led to fewer adults choosing to study later in life. Labour says millions of adults in the UK lack basic skills and are unable to access education and training. The government says further education and skills

is a priority. Labour's says its Nation Education Service - a 2017 manifesto pledge - would be "free at the point of use" and "open to all regardless of age, background or circumstance". A learner-centred system could help reverse the decline in adult learning, according to the party's Lifelong Learning Commission. The commission's interim report says that "lifelong learning should ensure that all individuals can access the

high-quality education and training they need throughout their lives, to improve their lives and their life chances". The report quotes 2018 figures from the Institute for Fiscal Studies, suggesting that funding for adult learning and apprenticeships has fallen by 45% in real terms since 2009-10. "Lifelong learning is about social justice and personal empowerment," Mr Marsden said, as well as the reskilling the "country desperately needs".

Carers are being bullied by the government, a committee of MPs says. The Work and Pensions Select Committee says ministers are harassing people who have made honest mistakes when receiving carer's allowance. Long-standing problems within the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) led to a failure to spot overpayments. The government says while it has a duty to the taxpayer to recover the money, "safeguards are in place to protect claimants from financial hardship". The MPs have urged the government to review, on a case by case basis, whether

overpayments are worth pursuing, given the Department of Work and Pensions' culpability and the cost of recouping them. For years, the Department for Work and Pensions ignored a whistleblower's concerns they were failing to spot overpayments to thousands of carers as they had cut the number of staff working on the benefit. HM Revenue & Customs was providing earnings data to the department that should have highlighted the overpayments, while the confusing nature of the benefit meant many people were unaware they were no

longer eligible. In April, the National Audit Office said about twothirds of carers with debts for earnings-related overpayments over £2,500 would have had their overpayments stopped earlier if the DWP had put in place sufficient staff. Carer's benefit is paid to people who provide at least 35 hours a week of care. The government says 850,000 people receive the allowance, with millions of payments made each year. The National Audit Office found the DWP was aiming to recoup overpayments from 80,000 people, worth about £150m.

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12 MEDIA WATCH

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SCRUTATOR’S Tidings of great joy buoyed millions of Indian families who cherish life and the values that make life worth living. The Rajya Sabha (the second chamber of India’s parliament) confirmed the decision of the Lok Sabha (the primary chamber , where the directly elected members of general elections take their seats) to 0utlaw the practice of the triple talaq ( three declarations of instant divorce of Muslim spouses by Muslim husbands). For decades past, timorous governments fearful of alienating their reactionary male Muslim vote banks preferred to look the other way in face of this abomination. Voices of Muslim women prevail Voices of wronged and long suffering Muslim women left to fend for themselves and their children without financial support who fought their corner in the Supreme Court of India with the passionate support and unswerving commitment of Muslim women lawyers, that triumphed, when the Bench declared the triple talaq a violation of the Indian Constitution. The Lok Sabha immediately passed a bill confirming the court’s judgement, but the confirmation was initially held up in the Rajya Sabha where the government lacked the required numbers. However, with the support and abstentions from a group of minority parties the legislation was passed into law by a substantial majority of 99 to 84. Henceforth those violating the anti-talaq Act will face a threeyear prison sentence (Times of India, Statesman, July 31) Historic move Shayara Bano, the woman who filed the writ petition in the Supreme Court following the triple talaq pronounced by her husband in 2016, welcomed the bill’s passage as empowerment of Muslim women. Zakia Soman, another petitioner hailed the bill as an historic development (Times of India, July 31)

Congress stranded Where many regional Opposition parties responded to decide to vote with the BJP government, the Congress Party mired in its discredited habit of pandering to its vote bank stood isolated, leaderless and out of step with the country it led for decades. Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said ‘Congress (was) still stuck in (the) Shah Bano era,’ when a 70-year old Muslim was denied appropriate alimony by her lawyer husband, the Supreme Courtt judgment that he do so being overturned through retrospective legislation as the Congress party had a two-thirds majority in parliament. (Times of India, July 31, August 2)

A food delivery startup in Delhi won the plaudits of a raft of internet users when it turned down a customer’s demand that the delivery driver should not be a Muslim. The founder of the startup told the customer, ‘We are proud of the idea of India and of the diversity of our esteemed partners and customers. We aren’t sorry to lose any business that comes in the way of our values (Times of India, August 1) Kashmir tense: Army foils jihadi attack

Prime Minister Narendra Modi issued the following statement: ‘An archaic and

Tourists at Srinagar airport

medieval practice has finally been consigned to the dustbin of history! Parliament corrects an historic wrong done to Muslim women. India rejoices today!’

Apple’s renewed India focus

Hindu August 4) China for Kashmir mediation Beijing-based newspaper, a mouthpiece of the government, published a column advocating third party mediation (by China presumably) on the vexed Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan, since the paper argues, that both parties were members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Such advocacy might have carried weight if China had accepted a similar principle on Tibet, Xinjiang, Taiwan, Hong Kong, or its arbitrary territorial and maritime claims in the South China Sea. What is sauce for the goose must sauce for the gander (Statesman, July 30) Tipu Jayanti cancelled

Escalating tension along the Line of Control in Kashmir culminated in an attack by a Pakistani border force, which was repulsed by units of the Indian Army. There were also jihadi attacks in the valley, encounters which resulted in Mujahideen deaths. The violence has led to an exodus of domestic and foreign tourists, who were joined by Hindu pilgrims visiting a shrine, whose presence was deemed unsafe Times of India, Statesman,

Naval vessels for Mozambique India’s Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, on a visit to Mozambique, handed over two fast India-made interceptor naval vessels to his hosts at a ceremony at the Mozambique Naval headquarters at Maputo. The development reflects the growing security ties between India and Mozambique in the Indian Ocean (Statesman, July 30) Axis Bank profit rise Private sector Axis Bank reporter a massive 95.4 per cent surge in profit to Rs 1,370.08 crore for the first quarter ended June 30. Total income rose sharply by 21.8 per cent, while net interest income rose by 13 per cent (Business Line, July 31 ) Manufacturing sector July growth up

Food delivery firm’s no to anti-Muslim order

PM’s take

Prime Minister Narendra Modi

pressure for reasons of business, company debt high among them. His Cafe Coffee Day chain had hundreds of outlets, popularising coffee in a largely tea-drinking nation. He earned an international reputation. His wife has taken charge of the company (Hindu, July 31, August 1)

India’s manufacturing sector activity rose in July on the back of increasing orders, leading to rising output and a moderate rise in employment (Statesman, August 2) Shocking rape charge against BJP MLA

B. S. Yediyurappa

The newly installed BJP government in Karnataka has cancelled the Tipu Jayanti celebrations in the state. Long a Muslim vote targeted gimmick, it was a travesty of history. The 18th century ruler of a swath of southern India, Tipu Sultan was enlightened in some ways and a ruthless tyrant in others. He fought the British, as did many other local rulers in the subcontinent, but these wars were mostly for local ends and had nothing to do with the concept of India which emerged under the Pax Britannica in the last quarter of the 19th century. History should not be mangled with myth. Tipu Sultan saw himself as the subject of the Turkish-based Ottoman Caliphate (Statesman, Hindu July 31)

The rape of a 17 year-old allegedly by a BJP MLA in Uttar Pradesh has convulsed India. Kuldeep Singh Sengar, the man in question, has been expelled by the BJP, and the case transferred to Delhi by order of the Supreme Court of India (Hindu, Times of India, Statesman, August 2)

Bounce back ‘India bounced back during the quarter. We returned to growth...We are pretty happy with that,’ said Tom Cook, CEO Apple. He pointed to India, Brazil, Thailand and Vietnam as emergent markets where the company had done well (Business Line, August 1) India in top two Dell market ‘India is actually our our second-fastest growing country right now. The economic cycle, the economic technology investment cycle that’s going on here is pretty interesting. India and Japan are our fastest-growing markets right now. There have been a lot of initiatives from the government around banking and the migration to a digital framework driving an enormous amount of technology investment,’ said Thomas Sweet, CEO and Vice President, Dell Technologies, in answer to a reopter’s question (Business Line, August1) Rising Tiger numbers An outstanding environmental success dominated media headlines for a change, and deservedly so. Prime Minister Modi hailed the news that India’s

Skills India up Of the 7.2 million people trained in skills under the central government’s ambitious project, 1.5 million have landed jobs. The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, targeting youth, is implementing this flagship project. Telangana tops the list in speed of placements, followed by Haryana, Punjab, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh (Business Line, July 31) Suicide of iconic entrepreneur

Border talks Border talks between India and China are set to take place in Beijing between India’s National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and Chinese Minister Wang Yi. Twenty rounds of such talks have proved fruitless thus far as China has laid claims to the entire territory of Arunachal Pradesh ( Statesman, August 1)

Apple India revenues are finally back on growth after three years of decline, reporting a third quarter fiscal (2018-19) earnings of $53.8 billion, a mere one per cent jump year-on-year. India’s contribution to the revenues was significant.

Coffee king V.G. Siddhartha who went missing for 36 hours committed suicide, his body being discovered in a river near Mangalore. He was aged 59. A letter in his briefcase expressed remorse that he had failed as an entrepreneur and took full responsibility for this. He was clearly depressed and under

tiger population had increased to 3,000, a third higher than in 2014. India’s tiger numbers had been declining due to poaching and the increasing encroachment of humans in tiger habitats. The government’s conservation policy and its faithful implementation has reversed the trend, but the need to press on regardless is vital (Hindu, Times of India, Statesman, July 30) A few lines from William Blake’s memorable poem, The Tyger, is well worth quoting, ‘Tyger! Tyger! burning bright/ In the forests of the night, What immortal hand or eye/ Could frame thy fearful symmetry?...Did he smile his work to see?/ Did he who made the lamb make thee?’


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10 - 16 August 2019

Pakistan Exists Because of the Generosity of Indian Hindus Dear Pakistan, Beautiful Kashmir. I met a lot of wonderful people when on my many trips there. I asked so many whose families were divided by Pakistani occupied Kashmir, how they feel? And each one would tell me India provides so much more money to them in Kashmir, than Pakistan do in the occupied territory where their families are, where like Israel in its occupied territories have evicted natives by flooding it with those from Pakistan. India is a miracle of religious diversity. No other country in the world has such religious diversity. None. Yet it's secular by constitution. Not a theocracy or religious republic, which would not be surprising if it were certainly for this part of the world. All minorities rely on the goodwill of the majority. Hindus world over know that only too well. Including in the Britain. Old maps show India or 'Hindoostan' as it's been known for centuries with no occupied territories. Academics even call it 'Greater India' to describe the regions to Cambodia and Laos. It can't be wiped out. We are in the engravings in the walls. You can blow up the statues, but we are in your food, in your thoughts. That Pakistan, a religious Republic, today thinks it can comment on the Indian Constitution, shows the extraordinary arrogance of the nation and the total lack of gratitude. If it were not for the ‘Hindu Nationalists’ it decries today, then the Hindu Nationalists of yesteryear were the ones thanks to whom Pakistan came to existence. Pakistan was not a gift of Britain. It did not exist, unlike India, unlike Hindustan, unlike Bharat, before

1947. The Indian has the right to say, before all of you this land was mine. By lineage this is my land. I claim it by birthright. This is my land. To those squatting upon the land of my Fathers. I claim it. By precedence this is my land. I claim it. Shame on you to desecrate the consecrated. My Gods live on this land. For the ashes of my Fathers and the temples of my Gods I claim it. All of us everywhere in the world who have suffered at the end of an invading sword or imperial pen, we are all Hindustani Kashmiris. All of us, whose ancestors faced the choice, to convert or die, we are all Kashmiris. And Britain which fights ISIS in Iraq and Syria, knows too, it has the spirit of Hindustani Kashmiris – not to bow down at the end of a sword. I am reminded of my trip a few years ago to India after visiting the Line of Control (LoC) with Pakistani Occupied Kashmir (PoK) and the Wagha border with Pakistan in Amritsar. ‘Here, in this place, they call it Hindustan, they call it Bharat’ I thought to myself as I approached the Indian border with Pakistan at the Wagah crossing to see the daily parade. Soldiers stomped their feat, Vanda Mataram blasted through the loud speakers, as young girls ran with billowing Indian flags larger than themselves and the families shouted ‘Jai Hind’. I must have stood ten feet tall. In Bharat there is no line of control. In Bharat we look at the Himalayas of Kashmir and know for 5000 years without dispute, they are a part of Bharat. Governments invaders imperialists come and go but Hindustan is eternal. As Kennedy said 'ich bin ein Berliner' (I am a Berliner) so we say 'I am a Kashmiri' .

The Unity Forum of the Indogenic religions celebrates 20th anniversary

Lord Dholakia berates government over long delay in resolving citizenship for British citizens

Archive images of the Windrush Generation

Lord Dholakia, speaking in the House of Lords, listed the multitude of issues surrounding immigration and nationality law, from the Windrush settlers to the treatment of detainees at immigration centres, as he urged the Government to prioritise new legislation to redress the wrongs. Challenging the Minster, Baroness Wiliams of Trafford, Lord Dholakia queried why great wealth can buy British citizenship, as a draft remedial Order altering the British Nationality Act 1981, was debated prior to approving. Welcoming the Government's belated efforts to ensure the citizenship legislation in the Act is compatible with the Human Rights Act, Lord Dholakia declared, "[t]here are no ifs or buts in this matter: it has taken 28 years to recognise this anomaly and the sooner it is put right the better". Noting how "deeply entrenched has been the Home Office in keeping people out of the United Kingdom", Lord Dholakia stated, "previous policies lacked basic concern about the rights and values of peoples wishing to settle here". Questioning how the sorry state of affairs came to pass, he declared, "[c]ommon sense would have told the Government

that [the citizens involved] were entitled to the incompatibilities being removed at the earliest opportunity". One of the main concerns involves the status of children of British Overseas Territories [BOT] descent whose parents were not married. These children, “remain shunned and left out in the cold, preventing them being officially embraced by their unmarried BOT fathers homelands”. Underlining his concerns, Lord Dholakia explained, “[i]t is plainly wrong and should never have been allowed to happen in the first place”. “This order”, Lord Dholakia continued, “gives us the opportunity to bring forward sooner rather than later legislation that would remedy the deep hurt and sense of rejection felt by the affected children, who are now adults”. “It is”, he stressed, “unacceptable that discrimination in acquiring British nationality persists”. Accepting that the Order is not the place to remedy some of the problems that perstist, Lord Dholakia stressed the need to sort out the tangle of law. Putting forward a solution, Lord Dholakia emphasised “[w]e should also use this opportunity to consoli-

Lord Dholakia

date all immigration and nationality issues and proof these against anti-discrimination legislation”. Further, Lord Dholakia also raised the good character requirement when seeking British nationality. Noting that it applies to those aged over 10, Lord Dholakia asked “[i]s the Minister aware that my Private Member’s Bill on this matter has gone through all stages in your Lordships’ House and will be dealt with by Wera Hobhouse MP in the other place?” “No one would wish to ignore some heinous crimes,” he stressed, “but great care must be taken to look at the proportionality of the crime and its impact, so that applicants are less likely to meet the threshold for refusal of citizenship”. Finishing off, Lord Dholakia returned to his point on disparity of wealth and the ability to become a British citizen. “… the size of the fees can mean that a family is able to pay for one child but not stretch to the other”, Lord Dholakia stated. Ending forcefully, Lord Dholakia asked the Minister, “[d]oes she accept that citizenship is not something to be granted on a discretionary basis but an entitlement when all the conditions are met?”

Sudbury man wins High Court battle over mosques on either side of his house L to R: Ven Seelawimala (Buddhist), Nitin Mehta (Jain) HH Swami Saswatanandji Maharaj, Chief Guest, Vice President of Bharat Sevashram Sangha, Swami Nirliptananda (Hindu), Mrs Charanjit Ajit Singh, Truptiben Patel, President of Hindu Forum UK

The Unity Forum of the Indogenic religions sponsored by the London Sevashram Sangha Celebrated its 20th anniversary on Sunday 21st July 2019 at the London Buddhist Vihara in Chiswick, London W4 1UD It was an impressive celebration with HH Swami Saswatanandaji Maharaj as Chief Guest. He is the Vice President of the Bharat sevashram sangha, founded by Jagadguru Acharya Swami Pranavanandaji Maharaj. The Swamiji was accompanied by a number of brother monks. Inspiring talks were

given by various speakers clearly showing how in different ways the teachings of the Indogenic religions lead their followers towards the goal of Global Oneness. They do not teach exclusiveness that divides and create conflicts but inclusiveness that leads to harmony. For that reason those who belong to them live in harmony and peace with others. Within 20 years of OM DAY there has been a great change in the world and more and more people are turning to the teachings of the Indogenic religions because they find peace and

happiness by practicing the principles they teach. Yoga, meditation, vegetarianism and cremation are some of the things that are accepted because of their positive values. It is now reasonably clear that if we want to have a world in which everyone can live without fear, we have got to turn to the ancient teachings of the Rishis of India. It is a form of self-culture that refines the person and makes him more naturally pure and free. Otherwise everyone is living in a conditioned state, causing him to behave abnormally.

Khalid Ikram has lived in Harrow Road, Sudbury, for 31 years, but he and his family have spent the last decade increasingly concerned by the expansion of an Islamic charity on either side of their home. The International Islamic Link (IIL) charity bought 856-858 Harrow Road in the 2007 and converted it to a place of worship and community centre before trying to buy number 852 to do the same thing. Brent Council slapped an enforcement order on the second property which would have stopped it operating as a mosque, but an appeal saw this overturned by the Planning Inspectorate (PI). In response, Khalid decided to challenge the PI's decision in the High Court.

And now, he and his family are celebrating after Mrs Justice Lang overturned the decision and ruled in favour of Khalid's application for judicial and statutory review of the PI's decision. IIL runs the Babul Murad Centre at 856-858 Harrow Road. After several planning rejections, it was granted retrospective planning permission for a number of changes to the site including a large extension to house a library. It has also now been officially designated a place of worship for eight years. Despite this, in the course of the planning dispute about its second property, IIL argued that the Babul Murad Centre does not operate as a mosque and is primarily a community

Khalid Ikram, won a judicial review against mosques operating on both sides of his house. (Pic courtesy: Jonathan Goldberg)

centre. This is because at the High Court lawyers for IIL argued the new Masjid Imam Ali mosque at 852 was necessary because the closest mosque serving Urduspeaking Shia Muslims was six miles away in Stanmore.


14 COMMUNITY

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10 - 16 August 2019

LIVING BRIDGE Indian-origin becomes the first ever to win Miss England title

Rohit Vadhwana

Srinivasa Ramanujan one of India’s geniuses Srinivasa Ramanujan is one of the few Indian geniuses who proved his worth to the British authorities in the pre-independence India. While India was still under British rule, S. Ramanujan, a poor south Indian boy, impressed everyone by his ability to master mathematics at an early childhood. Scraping through poverty and disinterested in other subjects, Ramanujan had exceptional interest and skill in juggling numbers. This familiarity with Mathematics got him recognition in Madras and Bombay mathematical societies. Ramanujan sent some of his research papers to M J M Hill, a British mathematician who acknowledged his exceptional ability in maths but pointed out the lack of necessary educational background and foundation. Consequently, he failed to enter University College London. But Hill gave him thorough professional advice and later Ramanujan wrote to Cambridge University where G H Hardy recognized the Indian mastermind. Even J E Littlewood, a colleague of Hardy was impressed with Ramanujan’s work. Finally, on Hardy’s invitation, Ramanujan arrived at Cambridge in April 1914 and spent nearly five years working with Hardy and Littlewood where he published important research in the field of math. Later, Ramanujan was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society, the youngest in the history of Royal Society, and only the second Indian after Ardaseer Cursetjee in 1841. Ramanunaj also became the first Indian to be elected a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge. But unfortunately during his stay at Cambridge, he contracted tuberculosis and nutrition deficiency which compelled him to return home in 1919 where he succumbed to the illness and died in 1920, at the early age of 32. Ramanujan was a religious Hindu Brahmin who credited his mathematical acumen to Goddess Namagiri Thayar of Namakkal, saying that numbers used to come to him as divine blessings. His works in the ‘lost notebook’ are still creating excitement and enthusiasm among mathematicians. A number of important works are credited to Ramanujan and he was honoured with various awards and recognitions during and after his lifetime. The 2015 Hollywood movie ‘The Man Who Knew Infinity’ by Matthew Brown is based on Robert Kanigel’s novel on Ramanujan. There are also other interesting books as well as audio-visual works on the life and works of Ramanujan. It can only be imagined what perseverance and dedication was required for him to make it to Cambridge from his poverty-ridden condition in Madras in the pre-independence era. Ramanujan commands high respect amongst the mathematical circles of England even today, and thus posthumously remains a ‘Living Bridge’ between the two countries. (Expressed opinions are personal.) (Do you have a story or suggestion for this column? Email me at: livingbridgeasianvoice@gmail.com)

Celebrate Indian Independence Day in Bedford Bandhan Group, a not-forprofit, secular organisation for women of Indian origin living in Bedfordshire and the surrounding areas with support from Bedford’s leading community, charity, voluntary organisations and interfaith groups of Indian origin are organising a free event to celebrate India’s Independence Day at Harpur Square on 15 August, 7am onwards. To celebrate the event, several guests will be joining the occasion including Her Excellency Ruchi Ghanashyam High Commissioner of India and Dave Hodgson the Mayor of Bedford Borough, who will be opening the event. Professor Gurch Randhawa, Deputy

Lieutenant for Bedfordshire, Mohammad Yasin, MP and Meryl Dolling, High Sheriff of Bedfordshire will also be attending the event. Professor Randhawa said, “It is a privilege to join the celebrations of Indian Independence Day and acknowledge the enormous contribution the Indian community has made to Bedfordshire’s thriving and diverse population.” To mark the occasion, there will be a variety of performances from 21st Century Education Trust, Sandhya Rao school of music, Nritham Dance Academy, NRI Music and Ananda Arts showcasing some of Bedford’s talent and cultural diversity.

Rupanjana Dutta Talk about new age career determination, Bhasha Mukherjee, who is also a junior doctor, has won the Miss England title, becoming the first ever Indian-origin to win this crown. But as a true doctor would do, even after a challenging evening, that finished at 2am, Dr Mukherjee took a train at 4am to go and attend her first shift as a junior doctor at an NHS hospital in Boston, Lincolnshire. Bhasha who is, 23, and was chosen as the Miss Asian Face of the Miss England pageant this year. She speaks five languages including Bengali, has two medical degrees and has an IQ level of 146. Her parents are from Kolkata, India. She initially grew up in India but the family moved to the UK when she was 9 and settled in Derby. Studying since child-

hood, Bhasha wanted to be an astronaut. But once she left high school, she decided to try her hand in performing arts, and eventually found her way into modelling. Bhasha, who speaks English, Bengali, Hindi, German and French, was scouted in 2016 to compete in a pageant aiming to increase diversity in beauty contests across the UK, before entering Miss England this year. Following her win she reportedly said, “I couldn't tell if I was more nervous about Miss England or about starting my job as a junior doctor.” This year’s Miss England contest for the first time had a make up free round, which was introduced after the competition was criticised for setting an unhealthy beauty standard and being too critical of women’s bodies. Speaking to Asian Voice exclusively Bhasha said,

“Winning felt surreal. And I couldn't stop crying on stage. I missed my family a lot during that moment as I had gone all alone to the competition.” When asked about her future plan, she added, “My future plan is to stay humble, continue to grow, and start preparing for Miss World which takes place in November in London this

year. I will continue to work as a doctor, I have come to work today even though the after party of the pageant finished at 2:30am and I had a train to catch at 4 am to make it to work.” Bhasha is the second ever Asian to win the Miss England crown after Hammasa Kohistani, of Afghan origin, who won the title in 2005.

Remembering the ‘forgotten pioneer’, Dwarakanath Tagore Bengal Heritage Foundation and London Sharad Utsav for the second consecutive year jointly organised a commemoration event for the ‘Forgotten Pioneer’ – Dwarkanath Tagore. On 4th August, Kensal Green Cemetery, by the Grand Union Canal in north-west London witnessed scores of Londoners gathering to pay tribute to one of the prestigious sons of India, who after his death in 1846 in London was laid to rest in this cemetery, which is home to graves of notable figures of all faiths. Dwarakanath was one of the first Indian industrialistsand entrepreneurs and is notable for making substantial contributions to the Bengal Renaissance. Remembered as the grandfather of the Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, the nation usually overlooks the huge amount of contributions this “Tagore” has in the field of entrepreneurship and industrialisation in India. Long before Rabindranath Tagore became internationally acclaimed and created storm through his writings, his grandfather had seen the dreams of a revolutionised Bengal. The tomb here in Kensal Green was in an obscure situation until last year when Bengal Heritage Foundation along with London Sharad Utsav with support from lead, Friends of Kensal Green cemetery came forward to do a restoration work. They decided to gather every year

around the 1st week of August to pay tribute to Dwarakanath Tagore through a commemoration event. Accordingly, this year the commemoration event took place in Kensel Green also celebrating the 225th birth anniversary of Prince DwarkaNath Tagore. This year’s commemoration reflects the many facets of his personality. Several people gathered at the mausoleum followed by few eulogies and wreath laying. There were speeches from Mohammed Rashid Khan (Counsellor, Indian High Commission) and Henry Vivian-Neal (Friends of Kensal Green Cemetery). The group then walked all the way from the tomb to the Dissenters’ chapel while singing “Anondoloke Mongol Aloke.” In the chapel, there was a small celebration featuring accolades that throw lights into Dwarakanath’s life and works. There were few interest-

ing speeches - Dr. Sagarika Golder (Social Researcher) on Dwarakanath and the women in his life – focussing on his relationship with this wife Digambari Devi. Mr.Sourav Niyogi (President, Bengal Heritage Foundation) spoke on Dwarakanath’s birth and early years , sharing insights with the audience on how Tagore was adopted and raised by his own uncle. Amit Guha (Bengal Heritage Foundation) spoke on Dwarakanath and his lifestyles. The Vice Chancellor of Rabindra Bharati University – Mr. Sabyasachi Basu Ray Chaudhury joined over an audio call to present his views on Dwarakathnath’s 225thbirth anniversary. There were a variety of songs presented by Tanusree Guha, Anamika Sarkar, Mahua Bej, Sambrita Das and Amit Guha along with a beautiful Beethoven piece played by Amith Dey, r e m e m b e r i n g Dwarakanath’s love for

western music. The session in the chapel ended with a short story reading by Koushik Chatterjee, who read Rabindranath Tagore’s “Jibito o Mrito” to give a spooky feel to the audience present in the chapel amidst the cemetery. “This is the second successful year where Bengal Heritage Foundation and London Sharad Utsav jointly organised the annual commemoration for Dwarakanath Tagore and this year is special as it marks 225th birth anniversary. We are happy that through this initiative we are making more and more Indians settled in the UK aware of Dwarkanath’s tomb being present here in London” said Anirban Mukhopadyay, president of London Sharad Utsav. The programme ended with the entire group singing “Aguner Poroshmoni” while paying tribute to Dwarakanath Tagore.


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TLIGHT

Kavita Shah: Veterinary Nursing Kavita Shah

Sunetra Senior ominated for Pet Plan's national Nurse of the Year Award by a public vote, twice in a row, Head Veterinary nurse, Kavita, gave us some insights into the nuances of her valuable yet underrepresented work. “It might seem obvious, but the truth is animals can’t speak. They don’t have a voice, and so need us to be sensitive towards them. A lot of the time owners are relaying the issue. I will work with them to understand how best to help.” Kavita elaborated on the unique feeling language of animals: “different pets have different ways of signalling pain. For example, dogs and cats might lick their lips or turn their heads when they’re checked in a certain way. Rabbits are more subtle; they don’t show pain unless it has become unbearable. A key sign is when they stop eating altogether. Each animal will also have definitive facial features to which you must be attentive to determine their medical state. There's a whole variety of ears, whiskers and noses.” Kavita heads her team at Medivet: a first-opinion practice that provides essential care for animals. “My role is to manage the day to day operation of the practice with the team. This involves running the client side of the practice i.e. making sure owners are happy. I also deal with back-of-house: the patients getting the right medication, providing general care that’s up to standard.” The consummate carer also does weekend shifts at a 24hr hospital in Hendon.

N

surprised about the fact that their pets have a condition. I think there’s a relationship with how we view the older part of the population in general in society.” And so, with her pure love of animal care, Kavita at once demonstrates that our quiet companions are not, in fact, secondary: rather an equally significant part of our natural lives. Indeed, it has been said that the famous scientist, Isaac Newton, invented the cat flap while deducing the laws of gravity! He could not ignore his pet which would scratch at the door whenever he became too deeply lost in concentration: a small price for some ongoing warm support. “The scope of a career in veterinary science is also often dis-

Kavita with Peanut

missed,” Kavita concluded. “However, as well as being satisfying in itself, the training can open doors to a multitude of future adventures. For example, I’m looking forward to travelling abroad to become involved in diverse projects, providing medical attention to animals.” This includes helping conserve the health of species in the wild, such as orangutans in the jungle.

*** Kavita went on to emphasise the human dimension of veterinary care: “While it is crucial to have empathy for Tell us a bit more on your innate animals to work in this medical field, love animals? one must have good people skills too. I’ve alwaysloved the idea of being You are always dealing with invested there for animals, holding them clients, who need as much comfort and through the time that they are sick to communication. Some clients are anxwhen they are well again. Actually, we ious about leaving a pet with you for had a dog that came in recently who was even one day. A lot of people do go into really frightened, requiring spinal this career assuming they don’t have to surgery. But the operation was so sucdeal with social interaction, but you cessful, he is now visibly happy to come must be able to talk and explain a lot, back to us for checkups! It’s incrediultimately gaining the conble to see. fidence of pet owners “While Animals are vulnerable too. They are more because they can’t speak. it is crucial to likely to continue Although I never had the treatments you have empathy for pets of my own growing recommend that animals to work in this up, I’d watch documenway. For example, taries and did a lot of I am currently a field, one must have work experience at variclinical coach, good people skills ous catteries and kennels which means I train over time to learn what I too." someone under me. could. An important part of this is teaching the right answers You do now have two lovely to questions around animal care for pets: a cat, Pickles, and a dog, Peanut. both simple and specialist enquiries.” What a pairing! Here, the young nurse also highYes! Actually, Peanut was brought lighted a poignant parallel with people into the practice in September of last in animal care. When asked about an year. She had clearly been neglected, outstanding observation she’s had durused for breeding and discarded, and it’s ing her time as a rising veterinary nurse, taken a while to build the trust with her. Kavita replied: “Unfortunately, people However, as I say, animals do have their do tend to neglect older cats. Cats are own way of showing you how they feel, obviously one of the UK’s favourite and he’s now one of my best friends! types of pet, and people really love them, I got my cat, Pickles, while she was but there is a blasé attitude towards very young at just 3 weeks old, actually a them as they age. Owners stop being so baby! I cared for her through it all:

arranging the milk, being with her through the night. I remember thinking veterinary science was definitely what I wanted to do then. I was willing to put in the hard work to help.

What have been some of the most memorable patients you’ve had? I think you always remember the cases that go into intensive care: you try everything, and you know if it doesn’t work you will have to put the animal to sleep. We’ve had two male cats in with severe urinary problems, which is unfortunately very common, who’ve needed roundthe-clock care. Luckily, they both pulled through. What’s one aspect of your profession that people tend to mystify? That vets are just in it for the money. Obviously, because there is no NHS for animals, we do have to charge. A lot of the surgeries done on human patients cost thousands but people don’t see that. We are just doing our best without government funding. As a kind of business, we have to find a way to operate efficiently. Vets do have to undergo training for typically 5-6 years and study extensively. If you are at the head of a practice, you also have to find a way to pay the bills and keep the establishment running.

What does it take to be a good carer for animals? You most definitely have to have passion – you are heavily involved in animal welfare and cannot fake it! You need to be able to communicate with others well. You also have to be able to keep a certain emotional distance at times as you will not be able to save every patient, should the cases be extreme. You need to understand that it can be kinder to let go. Why do you think people consider veterinary science to be an unusual trade? Perhaps there are prescribed ‘usual’ jobs. For example, in the Asian community, there’s the triple choice of lawyer, engineer or doctor. But working with animals is equally great and rewarding. Since I’ve been working, there have actually been more candidates of an Asian background applying for work opportunities and placements. This is lovely to see! How did you feel being nominated for a nationwide award for the second time in a row? Great very much because it means people do realise the important work of nurses. We are the hands and feet of the vet as well as providing professional support. It pushes me to go further as well. Finally, do you have any advice for people considering veterinary science as a career? If you really passionate make sure that you pursue it. Don’t let people talk you out of getting a valuable qualification. My own family has been supportive and that’s meant a lot. Also, make sure you get the appropriate work experience. Get as much hands-on experience as you can.

UK

15

10 - 16 August 2019

Priti Patel aims zero-tolerance policing to make criminals ‘feel terror’ Indian origin British home secretary, Priti Patel signals the return of zero-tolerance policing to make criminals ‘feel terror’ on the streets. In an interview with the Daily Mail, Patel said her department would take steps to empower the police officers to harden their stand against criminals in a bid to restore public confidence in law and order. “Quite frankly, with more police officers out there and greater police presence, I want them to literally feel terror at the thought of committing offences”, Patel said

speaking on her plans to curb criminal activities. She also warns chief constables not to ‘turn a blind eye’ to cannabis offences and aims to have a good intelligence network to stop ‘vulnerable young people’ being targeted by county lines drugs gangs.

Met Pc facing jail for ordering porn on couple's TV while guarding body of dead child A Metropolitan Police officer was Tuesday warned he faces jail for buying and watching porn while guarding the body of a dead child. PC Avi Maharaj, 44, used Graham and Alison Miller’s cable television account to purchase adult movies in the hours after the death of their 14-yearold son Harry at their £1.2m Wandsworth home in February last year. The officer, from Hayes, was alone in the house waiting for an undertaker to arrive, and watched the pornography

in the living room while tragic Harry’s body lay in the adjacent kitchen, Westminster magistrates court heard. Maharaj pleaded guilty to fraud last month, and appeared in the dock dressed in a blue suit to be sentenced but was freed on unconditional bail until a sentencing hearing on a date to be set.

Tafida Raqeeb: family fight NHS in court to save daughter The family of a seriously ill five-year-old girl are taking on an NHS trust in court to try to force doctors to release her for what they believe would be lifesaving treatment abroad. Tafida Raqeeb, from Newham, east London, sustained a traumatic brain injury in February and is on a life-support machine at Royal London hospital. Her parents want to fly her to Italy for treatment but doctors at the hospital, part of Bart’s NHS trust, say it would not be in her best interests and life-support should be withdrawn. The trust has now asked the high court to adjudicate in the case next

month. Her parents, Shelina Begum and Mohammed Raqeeb, have set up a petition urging the hospital to release Tafida for treatment as well as a crowdfunding page seeking to raise £400,000 for the costs of treatment, travel to Italy and legal costs to challenge the trust’s decision.

Landlord fined for housing more than 25 tenants in rundown Kilburn property A Wembley landlord has been fined £25,500 for housing breaches including placing more than 25 tenants in a rundown property in Kilburn. Salah Ali's threestorey house in Willesden Lane became a nightmare for neighbours who com-

plained to the council about the property's overflowing rubbish bins creating a breeding ground for rodents. Willesden Magistrates Court found Mr Ali guilty of housing breaches and a failure to licence on July 22.


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18 FINANCE - UK

AsianVoiceNews

AsianVoiceNewsweekly

www.asian-voice.com

10 - 16 August 2019

Consultant Editor Financial Voice Alpesh Patel Dear Financial Voice Reader, And this week the markets are falling – and how! As I get older, I don’t want my finances to give me stress. That’s why with stocks I either like to hold them for a few days, for short trends, make my returns and get out and not be held hostage, or I like to hold them forever, because they are likely to be good forever – like Goblant, Google, Amazon (despite my BBC comments the big tech giants should be broken into pieces). I take a similar attitude as I grow older with business partnerships. I am sure you’ve all faced the problem: you start work together on something then some thinks it’s all 50-50. Hmmm, hang one. You had a date, and now the other person thinks you’re not only engaged, but married and everything is to be shared, including things you were doing on your own outside of the relationship. Business is not marriage. Here are some lessons for entrepreneurs wanting, like me, peace of mind, on their next big deal. Where is the irreplaceable value? Just because someone does a few powerpoints, attend some meetings, and provide some thoughts, this does not make them irreplaceable. And that means they don’t get a stake forever. With me, I have always been the brand. You can call my companies whatever you want, I am who the customer and the client know. That is irreplaceable. So that is of value. Not a powerpoint or excel ability. Of course you want to marry me? So what? Just because someone wants to partner with you, means nothing. Hold your ground. It does not mean you suddenly have a team. Of course they want to marry you. Do not fall into those bad dates so quickly, and before you know it, you’re engaged. A company or a contract? My company is mine. I know many a billionaire who hardly gave up any of their business before they were worth hundreds of millions. Peter Cruddas for one is a role model. A contract will do just fine. The reason the other person wants equity, is they want a share in all your future earnings. An economist would say, as Marx (Groucho) did – you don’t want to be a member of a club that would have you as a member – similarly you don’t want to give equity to someone who seems to keen for it, to early. They should be earning it. Whilst I see how equity protects the other person, how does it protect you? It doesn’t – you’re married. Next they want your earnings from other projects to go through that NewCo. Do you really want to be answerable to a business partner? Have expenses approved by them? As readers of this paper are in business or finance, I hope they will take care and caution when entering business relationships. There is no price for peace of mind. What I used to rush into, professionally and personally, I no longer do. And life is so so so much better for it.

Construction sector contracts again, spillover risk seen: PMI Activity in Britain’s construction industry shrank consecutively for the third month in July as Brexit-related anxiety continues to delay building projects, an industry survey suggests. It is speculated the slowdown could soon spill over into other areas of the economy. The IHS Markit/CIPS construction Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) rose to 45.3, a less severe contraction than June’s 43.1 -which was the weakest reading in more than 10 years - but still well below the 50 level at which growth begins. Economists had expected the index to recover more strongly to 46. A sharp drop in new orders, down for four months in a row, meant a quick turnaround was unlikely and confidence in the sector was the lowest since November 2012, IHS Markit said. “Construction companies have started to respond to lower workloads by cutting back on input buying, staffing numbers and sub-contractor usage,” Tim Moore, economics associate director at IHS Markit said. “If the current speed of construction sector retrenchment is sustained, it will soon ripple through the supply chain, and spillovers to other parts of the UK economy will quickly become apparent.” Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said that “profound uncertainties” about Brexit and the rise of protectionism in the global economy were weighing on Britain. IHS Markit said commercial work was hardest hit in July while civil engineering and house building also shrank. Construction accounts for 6% of Britain’s economy, which has relied heavily on spending by consumers to offset a fall in business investment during the Brexit crisis. A PMI for the manufacturing sector - which represents 10% of Britain’s economy - held at a six-and-a-half-year low in July and output fell by the most in seven years.

'Ready and willing' to do a Brexit deal, Britain tells EU Britain is “ready and willing” to do a deal to leave the European Union if Brussels renegotiates the agreement, a senior government source said, denying that a no-deal Brexit was Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s central plan. Earlier, Johnson has said Britain will leave the EU on Oct. 31 with or without a deal. The government source said the EU had to understand that Johnson could not again bring forward the deal that was rejected by Britain’s parliament three times, leading to the resignation of his predecessor Theresa May. “We want a deal. It’s sad that they don’t want to negotiate with us,” the source said. “The fact that the Withdrawal Agreement has

Boris Johnson

been rejected by large margins by the House of Commons on three occasions means that, if there’s going to be a deal, they have to be prepared to renegotiate. We’re ready and willing to do so.” The two week old prime minister has taken a hard line with the EU, demanding that it shows willingness to change the deal it agreed with his predecessor before

negotiations can restart to secure Britain’s smooth departure from the bloc. Johnson's insistence that Britain is readying preparations to leave without a divorce agreement if Brussels refuses to renegotiate has spooked markets, sent the pound tumbling and prompted some lawmakers to suspect a no-deal Brexit is his ultimate goal. Johnson's government says the only way to secure a deal would be to ditch the Irish backstop an insurance policy designed to prevent the return of border controls between EUmember Ireland and Britain’s province of Northern Ireland that were ended by the 1998 Good Friday peace agreement. The Withdrawal

Agreement May struck in November with the EU says the United Kingdom will remain in a customs union “unless and until” alternative arrangements are found to avoid a hard border. Many British lawmakers oppose being bound to EU rules and customs duties post-Brexit. The EU has repeatedly ruled out renegotiating the Withdrawal Agreement, and a senior EU diplomat said Britain “does not have another plan”. A report cited EU diplomats as saying they believed a no-deal Brexit was government’s central scenario. “No intention to negotiate, which would require a plan, A no-deal now appears to be the UK government’s central scenario.”

British retailers suffer weakest July sales Major British retailers reported the weakest July sales growth since records began more than 20 years ago, and overall consumer spending was lackluster too, despite a boost from summer blockbusters “The Lion King” and “Toy Story 4”. The industry figures add to signs of slowing demand from households, the one sector of the economy which has held up relatively well since June 2016’s vote to leave the European Union, helped by rising employment and wages. The British Retail Consortium, which represents major highstreet chains and supermarkets, said annual total sales growth picked up to 0.3% in July after contracting by 1.3% in June and 2.7% in May. The major British retailers reported the feeble July spending growth, lowest for that month since 1995, and especially modest given

record temperatures had followed a rainy June, which would normally spur extra purchases on summer clothes and barbecue food. The overall consumer spending was lackluster too, despite a boost from summer blockbusters “The Lion King” and “Toy Story 4”. The industry figures add to signs of slowing demand from households, the one sector of the economy which has held up relatively well since June 2016’s vote to leave the European Union, helped by rising employment and wages. “While any growth is welcome after two months

of decline, it’s clear that most players need more than sunshine to get back on their feet,” Paul Martin, UK head of retail at survey sponsor KPMG, said. Last year, the men’s soccer World Cup and generally good weather boosted spending, adding to tough year-onyear comparisons in recent months. Barclaycard reported a similar trend in its monthly consumer spending data, which showed 1.7% growth, the fastest since April but still relatively subdued. The one bright spot was spending on cinema tickets - up 15% on a year earlier which Barclaycard attributed to the popularity of Disney films “The Lion King” and “Toy Story 4”. “Underlying uncertainty about the wider economic and political landscape (is) causing many to hold off

making purchases on bigger-ticket items,” Barclaycard director Esme Harwood said. Barclaycard said the proportion of consumers who said they still felt comfortable making big purchases had dropped to 54% from 60% over the course of a month, while job loss fears had risen to the highest in more than two years. New car sales suffered their biggest July fall since 2012, motor industry data showed, and Britain’s biggest private-sector employer, supermarket chain Tesco, said it was cutting 4,500 jobs on top of several thousand earlier this year. New British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said last month he was committed to taking Britain out of the European Union on Oct. 31, even if that meant leaving without a deal - something businesses fear would cause major disruption.

UK too desperate to secure US trade deal: Former US treasury secy Former US treasury secretary Larry Summers has said he does not believe that a “desperate” UK would manage to secure a postBrexit trade deal with Washington, as Dominic Raab, the new foreign secretary, heads to the US to scope out the potential for such an agreement. Summers who was a senior official under Bill Clinton and Barack Obama said the UK was in a weak position when it came to negotiating with trade partners. “Britain has no

leverage, Britain is desperate … it needs an agreement very soon. When you have a desperate partner, that’s when you strike the hardest bargain,” he said in a radio program. Summers’ remarks came as Raab headed to Canada, the US and Mexico to “fire up” talks about trading relationships. Despite warm words from Donald Trump about a trade deal, Summers said: “We have economic conflict with China and, even on top of that, the deterioration of the pound is going to

further complicate the negotiating picture. We will see it as giving Britain an artificial comparative advantage and make us think about the need to retaliate against Britain, not to welcome Britain with new trade agreements.” Even if the two countries could come to an agreement, Summers said, the UK was in a weak negotiating position. “Britain has much less to give than Europe as a whole did, therefore less reason for the United States to make

concessions,” he said. “You make more concessions dealing with a wealthy man than you do dealing with a poor man.” The foreign secretary said Asian counterparts he met in Thailand last week expressed a “consistent warmth” for the UK and a “desire to work more closely with us”. The former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith sought to dispute Summers’ warning, saying: “This is a classic attempt by Larry Summers to use Brexit for domestic point-scoring.


REAL ESTATE VOICE

WHEN LOSING IS WINNING

www.asian-voice.com

AsianVoiceNews

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Last week we went for an underwrite, the idea was to not hold on to the property. It was an extremely small deal, which closed in 30 seconds with the client.

Suresh Vagjiani

Sow & Reap London Property Investment

The property is in North Humberside which is about 4.5 hours away from London. It consists of 3 flats, all rented producing £10K per annum in total. A property a few doors down sold for £177K in the middle of last year. Having dug a little deeper we have discovered this was a guest house. So, although not quite a like for like comparable, it does give an indication as the building is the same, and there can be an uplift simply based on rezoning the property.

10 - 16 August 2019

sell them individually. At times you can get very tunnel visioned in regards to buying property in London and miss deals outside. Of course, the London property market is a 500-year-old market, and weathers well during a downturn, and there is also a herd mentality which keeps the focus in and around London, with good reason.

We closed this deal at £70K, therefore we feel there is a large upside to be made on this deal; assuming there are no major works to be done in the property.

It is specifically for this reason why deals like this in auctions are missed and therefore provides opportunity. This is not the first time we have bought ‘odd’ lots in the auction. By ‘odd’ lots I mean spotting properties which are not meant to be in that particular auction. They are ill suited and probably ended up in the London auction either because of an over zealous sales person or some connections from the auctioneer to the owner.

We are currently looking to raise the rest of the funds by way of a mortgage, therefore only £20K will be used in this deal, against a large potential upside. We were hoping to come in and out and make some beer money on this deal, instead it may transpire that the client makes a tidy sum from this very small investment.

The reserve was £70K and we underwrote this deal at £70K. It could be argued if we didn’t underwrite it and it never sold for £70K we may have had the ability to go back and offer a lower figure. However, in property there is little point speculating about the past. The point is the present and the future.

The aim now is to simply split the three flats and

There is another interesting angle to this deal.

BUY TO LET OPPORTUNITY London, SW10 Purchase Price: £500,000 Specialists in Central London Property Sourcing

19

During the pre credit crunch era if you bought below the market value on a deal you used to be able to get lending based on the valuation and not the purchase price, if structured in the right manner. Sometimes, you could even get cash back on a deal. I remember buying a property with no money and getting £40K on completion! It is still possible to do this with bridging lenders, as bridging lenders are more flexible in regard to funding deals which have been flipped as opposed to High Street lenders. With High Street lending one normally has to wait six months before they can get borrowing at the market value. The other angle here is to wait the 6 months, and then simply refinance at market levels.

l Large two bedroom first floor flat, period conversion l Long lease of 125 years l Close to the shops, restaurants and cafes of Kings Road and Fulham Road

l Close to Fulham Broadway and Imperial Wharf stations l Flats in this location are being sold for £1,000 / sq. ft. and above, while have secured this at a discount of 25% for £750 / sq. ft.

l Excellent long term buy and hold opportunity

Call us now for more information!

Sow & Reap Properties Ltd

0207 993 0103

info@sowandreap.co.uk www.sowandreap.co.uk 27 Gloucester Place, London, W1U 8HU SowandReapProperties

Sowandreapuk

Turning land into cash Get in touch about our land opportunities


20 FINANCE - INDIA

AsianVoiceNews

AsianVoiceNewsweekly

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10 - 16 August 2019

Fewer cases admitted for insolvency action in Q1 The number of fresh cases admitted for resolution has seen a decline for only the second time since the enactment of the Insolvency & Bankruptcy Code (IBC), indicating that there may be fewer companies in the system that are under financial stress. But it is also unfavorable as nearly 55% of the companies that come under IBC have gone into liquidation, with just 14% ending up with a resolution plan, latest data released by the Insolvency & Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) showed. What is also worrisome is that in 20 cases during AprilJune quarter where a resolution

could be achieved, financial creditors managed to realise only 14% of their claims, which in other words means that they had to sacrifice 86% of the loan claims that had been admitted. Compared with overall experience, this is just a third of claims that the financial creditors or banks have realised over the last two-and-a-half years. Till June, total claims of financial creditors that were admitted in the cases that have been settled added up to £25.2 billion, while the value realised was £10.8 billion. In June quarter, against admitted claims of close to £3.15 billion, the

realisable value was estimated at £436.7 million. “There are sectors such as power, where the offers are very low. The option is to either settle with a steep haircut or simply let the asset die,” said an executive with a leading asset reconstruction company. A banker added that some of the assets where a resolution was possible during the last quarter had seen value erosion, resulting in low bids. In at least three cases - Calyx Chemicals & Pharma, Deccan Chronicle Holdings and Tecpro Systems the value realised was around 5%. There are four companies Tehri Iron & Steel Castings, JD

Aneja Edibles, Shivam Fragrances and Dadi Impex where financial creditors will extract more value than their claims. The IBBI data also reflected that at the end of June, 666 of 1,292 ongoing cases had exceeded the 180-day deadline for resolution, while 445 - or more than one-third - cases had gone beyond the maximum permissible 270-day period. With the government setting a 330-day deadline, including legal challenges, bankers fear that more companies would face liquidation, although the amendment to the IBC does fix more stringent deadline.

India slips two spots to become 7th largest economy in 2018: WB The World Bank data for 2018 showed that India fell two spots in global GDP ranking to seventh place compared with the fifth position it took in the year 2017. The UK and France forged ahead this year, cementing their place at the fifth and sixth spots, respectively. India had emerged as the sixth largest economy in 2017 while France was pushed to the seventh place in the global GDP league table. The US remained the largest economy in the world with a GDP of $20.5 trillion, followed by China and Japan, with economy sizes of $13.6 trillion and nearly $5 trillion, respectively. Germany ($4 trillion), the UK ($2.8 trillion)

and France ($2.77 trillion) took the fourth, fifth and sixth positions, respectively. India’s GDP was at $2.7 trillion in 2018. Notably in 2017, India was at $2.65 trillion, UK at $2.64 trillion and France at $2.5 trillion, helping the third-largest economy in Asia to emerge as the fifth largest economy. CRISIL had earlier cut

India's GDP growth estimate to 6.9 per cent from 7.1 per cent for FY20. The adjustment came amid weak rainfall in June and slowing global growth, with another reason being sluggish data for the first quarter. “The crucial question, therefore, is whether a trough is in sight. Given the fiscal constraints, public spending is unlikely to have the heft to pull growth above seven per cent. And some of the recent, and much-needed, reforms would pay off only over the medium term. There would, therefore, be some near-term onus on monetary policy to stimulate. But how effective that

can be is the big question,” said Dharmakirti Joshi, Chief Economist at CRISIL. India still remains the fastest growing major economy in the world although growth is estimated to slow to 7% in the current fiscal that ends in March. China is expected to face a sharper slowdown due to the ongoing tariff war with the United States. The government has unveiled a plan to emerge as a $5 trillion economy by 2024-25 and the Economic survey for 2018-19 has said that the country needs to sustain a real GDP growth rate of 8% to achieve the goal. However, not every analyst was convinced with the promise. According to them, the target is too ambitious to achieve.

Air India divestment may garner global participation Interest among global airlines in the upcoming second attempt at disinvestment of Air India is likely to be strong this time, the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA) said. In a statement, CAPA said that it does “not rule out the possibility of some leading carriers including those from the Gulf participating in the tender in a joint venture with large Indian conglomerates.” The aviation advisory, however, cautions that the current global and national economic environment and geopolitical instability may have some impact on investor sentiment. “However, the outlook for the performance of Indian carriers remains,” it adds. There is a likelihood of international entities seeking to form joint ventures with Indian companies to bid for Air India to comply with norms that cap foreign direct investment into the national carrier at 49%.

Increased valuation The CAPA has recommended that the government allow FDI for a higher number of bidders and increased valuation for Air India. This will be necessary as major Indian corporations from outside aviation may not have the appetite to invest in a complex project without an experienced strategic partner, it noted. The exit of Jet Airways, Air India’s biggest full-service competitor, from the market has further enhanced the chances of a successful disinvestment this time. “CAPA has long maintained

that the Indian market can only sustain two full-service carriers, and that the operation of three such airlines – Air India, Jet Airways and Vistara – was not sustainable.” However, the remote chances of a revival of Jet Airways, along with the “current global and national economic environment and geopolitical instability” may dampen investor sentiment, CAPA warned. The aviation consultancy reiterated what it considered were key factors to ensure a successful attempt at privatisation of the national

carrier. These include: the government exiting completely from the airline, allowing the new owner flexibility in dealing with Air India’s employees and easing the requirement of the ‘Air India’ brand being kept intact by its buyer. Minister of State for Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri told Parliament that the government may launch its second attempt to privatise the national carrier before the end of August. An earlier attempt last year failed to yield any interest, with no entity coming forward to bid for Air India.Air India currently has over £5.5 billion debt. The government had in February 2019 approved creation of special purpose vehicle (SPV), Air India Asset Holding Ltd (AIAHL), to house £2.95 billion debt of the airline as well as its non-core assets, painting and artifacts and other nonoperational assets.

in brief SBI OUT OF RED WITH £231.2 MN NET IN Q1 State Bank of India (SBI) has reported a net profit of £231.2 million for the quarter ended June 2019, as against a loss of £487.6 million in the corresponding quarter in the previous year. During the quarter under review, the bank’s deposit grew only 7.3% to £294.8 billion as it pursued a strategy of selling its holding of surplus government bonds to fund credit. Net advances grew 13.8% to £294.8 billion. Investments dropped 11% to £94 billion. SBI chairman Rajnish Kumar said that the focus was on increasing core operating profit (preprovision). “Here, we have been successful as pre-provision growth in operating profit has risen 32%,” said Kumar. On subsidiaries, Kumar said that SBI General would file for an IPO next year as talks were on for exit of foreign partner IAG. SBI Cards is targeting an IPO in the fourth quarter of the current fiscal. He said that the bank has permission to raise £2 billion of equity and £700 million of bonds.

DOT WORKING ON PROPOSAL TO MERGE MTNL, BSNL The department of telecommunications (DoT) is “working on” a proposal for merger of cash strapped BSNL and MTNL, as part of efforts to revive the ailing state-owned telecom firms, a source said. The source said their merger is “one of the many components” of the overall revival plan being worked out for the two corporations, and that a final call on the matter will be taken by the Cabinet. The move assumes significance as the distressed telecom PSUs have been making losses and have faced challenges in clearing staff salaries. “Merger is one of the many components of the overall revival plan because clearly MTNL cannot stand by itself. Finally, the Cabinet has to take a view on that,” the source said, adding that the plan entails MTNL being merged with BSNL. MTNL provides telephony services in Delhi and Mumbai, while BSNL is present in the rest of the circles.

RISHAD PREMJI TAKES OVER AS WIPRO CHAIRMAN Rishad Premji took charge as the chairman of Wipro last week. He takes over from Azim Premji who retired as chairman on July 30 after an eventful innings at the helm, transforming a small cooking oil company that his father started in 1945 into a $25-billion global IT powerhouse. Till recently, Rishad was the chief strategy officer leading Wipro’s M&As and was the brain behind Wipro Ventures - a $100million fund to invest in startups developing technologies and solutions that will complement Wipro’s businesses with next-generation services and products. “Rishad brings to this role new ways of thinking, broad experience, and competence that will lead Wipro to greater heights. He has been an integral part of the leadership team since 2007, and has a deep understanding of the company, its business strategy, its culture and its heritage. He is also completely committed to the values which form the bedrock of Wipro,” Premji senior said at the company’s AGM held in Bengaluru in July.

AUTO INDUSTRY IN DOLDRUMS The pain in the auto industry has just exacerbated. Sales of cars and SUVs - that saw their worst quarterly fall since 2000-01 in the just-ended April-June 2019-20 period - crashed yet again as companies such as Maruti Suzuki and Honda saw some of their steepest declines in recent years. The situation remains equally grim for two-wheeler makers where all the top players - Hero Moto, Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI), TVS and Royal Enfield fell by double digits, clearly bringing out the pain in both urban and rural markets. What is alarming for the industry is that this decline comes on an already-weak base. Sales of passenger vehicles (cars and SUVs) had started their downward spiral in July last year and save for October 2018, the numbers have been coming down every month since then. Also, the subdued sentiments in the market prevail even when companies are offering attractive discounts and freebies to lure buyers as the industry prepares for stricter BS6 emission norms from April next year.


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21

10 - 16 August 2019

in brief BEER NAMED AFTER SOURAV GANGULY IN AUSTRALIA In special tribute to cricketer Sourav Ganguly, an undisclosed bar in Australia has named a beer after him. Called the 'Feral "Ganguly" Mango Lasi' the beer, ranked under the 'Smooth Hoperators' section of the beer menu, is a very obvious tribute to the Bengal batsman. "I always thought they didn’t like @SGanguly99 much here in Australia. But they instead have paid him the highest Aussie honour possible by naming a beer after him & even marking it as a smooth “hopetator” Must have been all those hugs to Pontin" the caption reads.

AFGHAN HIGHWAY BLAST KILLS AT LEAST 35 A roadside bomb in Afghanistan killed at least 35 people travelling on a bus and injured 27, officials said. The blast on the main road linking the provincial capitals of Herat and Kandahar happened in the Ab Khorma area of Farah province, said provincial police spokesman. "The bomb was planted by the Taliban insurgents to target Afghan and foreign security forces," he said, adding most of the dead or injured were women and children. A Taliban official denied responsibility and said their fighters were not responsible for planting landmines in the area. The blast comes ahead of the resumption of peace talks between US officials and Taliban representatives, who are hoping to strike a deal on a timetable for the withdrawal of foreign forces in exchange for security guarantees by the Taliban. But despite the talks, violence has been relentless.

5 KILLED, 38 INJURED IN PAK BLAST Five people, including two cops, were killed and 38 others injured in a powerful blast targeting a police vehicle in Quetta, the capital of Pakistan's Balochistan province. The blast took place close to a police vehicle at the Bacha Khan Chowk, Quetta's DIG said. The target of the blast appeared to be the Station House Officer (SHO) of the area but he had escaped with injuries and had been shifted to hospital, the DIG said. “The bomb went off as soon as SHO Shaffat got down from his vehicle,” he said. The condition of the SHO is said to be critical.The DIG said it was too early to confirm whether it was a suicide attack or the blast was caused by a remotely triggered device.

IMRAN SPENT 8 TIMES LESS THAN SHARIF ON US TRIP Pakistan PM Imran Khan’s maiden visit to Washington last month costed $67,180, eight times less than what the exchequer spent on former premier Nawaz Sharif’s US trip in 2013. The Pakistan government released the cost of Khan’s three-day visit to the US. Khan was accompanied by a 27member delegation. Instead of opting for a chartered plane, they flew on a commercial Qatar Airways flight with a stop in Doha. Around $8,408 was spent on hotels and $37,371 on travel of the PM. During the trip, Khan gave gifts worth $884 and spent $4,360 on tips. Dollar 8,097 was spent on food and refreshments. Khan stayed at the Pakistani ambassador’s official residence in Washington. In comparison, Nawaz Sharif spent $549,854 during his US visit in 2013, while PPP chief Asif Ali Zardari spent $752,682 during his trip in 2009, the government statement said.

Forced conversions are not part of Islam: Imran ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan decried the practice of forced conversions as 'un-Islamic', claiming that those who do so are unaware of the history of Islam. Addressing an event on the occasion of National Minority Day, Khan invoked Prophet Mohammed and said he gave religious freedom to minorities and protected their places of worship "because the Quran orders that there be no compulsion in religion. How can we then take it into our own hands to forcefully convert someone to Islam - either by marrying (non-Muslim) women or on gunpoint or to (by threatening to) kill someone because of their religion?" he was quoted as saying. He added, "All these things are un-Islamic. If God had not given his messengers the power to impose their beliefs on someone, who are we (to do so)?" He also acknowledged, “Why will they fight for Pakistan, when the state itself does not ask for its welfare? Similarly, there are untouchables. When we will give them full

Imran Khan

protection, when we will make them equal citizens?” Khan's comments came after Pakistan's independent human rights watchdog in April had raised concerns over the increasing incidents discrimination against minorities that form 1.6% of the population, including abductions and forced conversions and marriages of Hindu and Christian girls to Muslim men every year. Recently, Pakistan faced backlash after two minor girls Reena (15) and Raveena (13) were

kidnapped, forcibly converted to Islam and married to Muslim men. Issue of Balochistan On Balochistan, he stated, "70% of people in Balochistan are under the yoke - these are the impoverished conditions. He also said that his government is committed to operationalising the Kartarpur corridor on the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev. Seeks cut in roti, naan prices The cash-strapped government rolled back the gas

tariff hike for roadside tandoors to bring down the prices of roti and naan in Pakistan. The move seems to be an attempt to pacify disgruntled masses, who have been blaming the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-iInsaf (PTI) government for hike in prices of cooking gas, fuel, electricity and food items among other things. At present, a piece of ‘naan’ costs Rs12 to 15 and ‘roti’ Rs 10 to 12 in different parts of Pakistan. Prior to increase in gas tariff and rates of wheat flour on June 30, the price of ‘naan’ ranged between Rs 8 and 10 and ‘roti’ Rs 7 and 8. “Khan has taken strict notice of the increase in the price of bread and ordered that previous prices of ‘naan’ and ‘roti’ be restored. He has directed the economic coordination committee (ECC) to take measures in this regard,” said Firdous Ashiq Awan, Khan’s special assistant on information. Soon after Khan’s directive, the ECC approved measures to bring down naan/roti prices by revising gas prices for roti tandoors.

Pakistan opens doors of Choa Sahib gurdwara after 72 years JHELUM (PAKISTAN): Seventy-two years after partition, Pakistan last week opened the doors of Gurdwara Choa Sahib in Punjab province's Jhelum district – the second historic event in two days after a Nagar Kirtan that started from Gurdwara Nankana Sahib in neighbouring country entered into Punjab on Indian side via the Attari-Wagah land route. The two events, which carry religious significance for the Sikh community, come in the run-up to the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, the founder of Sikhism, in November. The event began with Sukhmani Sahib path and ardaas after which formal inauguration plaque was unveiled and langar (community kitchen) started. Gurdwara Choa Sahib stands on the

northern boundary of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Rohtas Fort. The building, commissioned by Maharaja Ranjit Singh and completed in 1834, had been lying closed since 1947 after Sikh community members from the area migrated from Pakistan. The opening ceremony was attended by officials from Pakistan Sikh Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee (PSGPC) and Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) and members of Sikh and Muslim community. The iconic shrine has been opened for Sikh community as a gift in 550th birth anniversary year of Guru Nanak. The shrine holds great importance for Sikh community as it is believed Guru Nanak, during one of his udasis (journeys), reached here

on his return from Tilla Jogian temples where he went to meet the Nathpanthis. There was a drought like situation and people had no water to drink. It is believed that Guru Nanak stayed here, prayed and a natural water spring (choa) came up, quenching thirst of people. PSGPC president Satwant Singh said, there cannot be a more auspicious day than today when a gurdwara, which was lying neglected and closed for 72 years, has been reopened. Now we will be preparing a plan for restoration of this gurdwara. I would like to give a message of peace and brotherhood to people of India and also that we must come

together and do everything possible to celebrate 550 years of Guru Nanak in the best possible way. He said that Choa Sahib is now open for all devotees from India and other countries considering they have all required permissions like visa at individual level. Making arrangements to host hundreds of pilgrims from India or other countries will take time but anyone can visit at individual level with required permits, he said.

Rights group alleges torture of detainees in B’desh DHAKA: Bangladesh's law enforcement agencies have used systematic torture on detainees to stifle dissent, an international human rights group said in a report that the government dismissed as baseless. The report, titled "Cycle of Fear", was jointly produced by the Genevabased World Organization Against Torture (OMCT) - a coalition of NGOs fighting torture and ill-treatment - and the Bangladeshi human rights group Odhikar. OMCT said the report was based on an examination of

more than 300 cases of what it called torture between 2009 and 2017 and information gathered from alleged victims, members of the executive, the judiciary, representatives of civil society and of international organisations. Information it received revealed that "Extreme forms of physical violence" had been used on detainees, the organisation said, citing instances such as shooting in the legs or knees, the breaking of bones, drilling holes in arms and legs, and rape, as well as mental abuse, including

mock executions and death threats. Complaints of torture, enforced disappearances and extrajudicial killings had increased in recent years and the government had failed to investigate and punish the perpetrators, the organisations said. The government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, who won a third straight term in a December 2018 election, rejected the report. "We can tell you with emphasis that there is no single incident of disappearance or

extrajudicial killing with the knowledge of this government," Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan said. "For the last 10 years there is no lawlessness in the country or any application of torture by this government to silence dissent with any government machinery," he added. Gerald Staberock, OMCT secretary general, said torture was used to instill fear and quash dissent, to coerce confessions or as a tool for corrupt law enforcement agents to extract bribes.


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Lanka gives free visa to boost tourism after bomb blasts COLOMBO: Sri Lanka announced that it will give a one-month free visa on arrival to visitors from nearly 50 countries in its latest effort to revive the island nation's lucrative tourism industry that was badly hit by the Easter bomb attacks that killed 263 people. Tourism Minister John Amaratunga said tourists or those visiting for business purposes could get their free visa on arrival or applying online. The measure will be effective for six months. He said the government expects a substantial increase of tourists from the move. "If it is not beneficial we will suspend this program," he said. Because of the measure, the government may lose about 4.3 billion rupees ($24 million) in revenue it could have earned from charging visas. Sri Lanka charges $35 for a one-month tourist visa, or $20 for nationals from South Asia.

Following the Easter Sunday attack, many tourists cut short their holidays while others canceled their bookings, dealing a severe blow to the tourism industry, the country's thirdlargest foreign currency earner after remittances from overseas workers and textile and garment exports. According to government data, tourist arrivals

declined by about 45% in July from a year earlier. However, arrivals in July, which stood at 117,000, showed a moderate increase compared to 63,072 in June. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe assured that Sri Lanka is now safe for tourists and "security has returned to normalcy." He said that all those

involved in the deadly attack are in custody and "even those who had longstanding association with them are also being questioned and some have been detained and some have been released." The government has introduced many measures to revive tourism that include reducing airline ground charges, aviation fuel prices and departure fees for at least six months. It set a one-year moratorium for repayment of loans for tourism-related businesses and cut interest rates on new loans. Hotels, too, have announced attractive packages with discounts up to 60%. "We would like to promote Sri Lanka as a destination which is safe for people to visit and also we are giving them type of concessions and rates which they may not get for a long, long time," said Wickremesinghe.

30 killed in two mass shootings in US TEXAS: At least 30 people were killed and several others injured in two separate mass shootings within 24 hours in the United States. While nine people were killed in Dayton, Ohio, 20 died at a packed Walmart store in Texas after gunmen armed with an assault rifle opened fire indiscriminately. The mass shooting in Texas, second fatal shooting, came just a week after the mass shooting in California. One suspect was taken into custody while authorities were studying an extremist manifesto purportedly written by the gunman. The Ohio mass shooting took place just hours after the Texas shooting. The gunman involved

in the Ohio shooting was killed by the security forces. Texas shooting One suspect was taken into custody in connection with the Texas shooting. The shooting injured a total of 26 people. They were immediately taken to a hospital for treatment. Footage show bodies lying on the ground in the store's parking lot while El Paso authorities made a desperate appeal for blood donations. Addressing a press conference, Texas Governor Greg Abbott said, "We as a state unite in support of these victims and

their family members." Media has named the suspect as 21year-old Patrick Crusius. Ohio shooting The Ohio shooting happened in Dayton, when a gunman opened fire

indiscriminately at people. At least nine people were killed in the shooting. The shooter was killed while authorities challenged him. "The shooter is deceased, from gunshot wounds from the responding officers," Police Lieutenant Colonel Matt Carper said. He added that no police personnel was injured while attempting to neutralize the gunman. Police were working to identify the shooter and the FBI were on scene to provide any necessary assistance, he said.

Bangladesh facing its worst ever dengue outbreak DHAKA: Bangladesh is facing its worst-ever dengue fever outbreak as hospitals are flooded with patients, putting a severe strain on the country's already stretched medical system. The mosquito-borne viral infection has spread across the country with 61 out of 64 districts reporting dengue cases. The government has confirmed 15,369 dengue cases since January 1. Of those, 9,683 patients were diagnosed between July 1 and July 30. At present, about 4,400 patients, including many children, were undergoing treatment in many hospitals. There have been 14 deaths. Officials from Dhaka, the megacity that is the epicenter of the outbreak, have struggled to contain it, drawing criticism and spreading panic among some

residents. Dengue is found in tropical areas around the world and is spread by a type of mosquito that mainly lives in urban areas. The virus causes severe flu-like symptoms and while there is no specific treatment for the illness, medical care to maintain a person's fluid levels is seen as critical. There are fears that the situation in the countryside will worsen as many residents of the city travel to villages to celebrate Eid-ul-Adha next month. Infected humans can serve as a source of the virus for uninfected mosquitoes. Ayesha Akhter, assistant director at the Directorate General of Health Services, said an outbreak of dengue has accompanied every monsoon since 2000, but this year's

in brief BEIJING ORDERS REMOVAL OF ARABIC SYMBOLS

Authorities in the Chinese capital have ordered halal restaurants and food stalls to remove Arabic script and symbols associated with Islam from their signs, part of an expanding national effort to “Sinicize” its Muslim population. Employees at 11 restaurants and shops in Beijing selling halal products said officials had told them to remove images associated with Islam, such as the crescent moon and the word “halal” written in Arabic, from signs. “They said this is foreign culture and you should use more Chinese culture,” said the manager of a shop. The campaign against Arabic script and Islamic images marks a new phase of a drive that has gained momentum since 2016, aimed at ensuring religions conform with mainstream Chinese culture. The campaign has included the removal of Middle Eastern-style domes on many mosques in favour of Chinese-style pagodas.

THREE-YEAR-OLD IN CHINA SURVIVES SIX-STOREY FALL A three-year-old boy has survived a fall from a sixth-floor balcony in China after neighbours caught him with a blanket, state media reported. Video of the incident shows the boy clinging onto a slab and trying to climb back up onto the balcony, while his feet kept slipping. Moments later, he lets go and falls onto a large blanket held open by onlookers. “I held out the blanket along with others... My only thought was to keep him safe,” said Zhu Yanhui, who rushed to the scene.

TULSI GABBARD SEEKS APOLOGY FROM KAMALA HARRIS US Democratic presidential hopeful Tulsi Gabbard has sought an apology from her fellow party lawmaker, Indian-American Senator Kamala Harris, alleging that people "suffered" when she was the attorney general of California. Both Gabbard, 38, and Harris, 54, who are popular among Indian-Americans, appeared on the same stage in Detroit at the CNN's Democratic presidential debate. Trailing far behind Harris in current opinion polls, Gabbard - the first Hindu to ever run for the presidency of the United States - was aggressive in attacking Harris on the criminal justice system. "The bottom line is, Senator Harris, when you were in a position to make a decision and an impact in these people's lives you did not and worse yet, in the case of those who are on death row, innocent people you actually blocked evidence from being revealed that would have freed them until you were forced to do so," Gabbard said amidst applause from the audience.

REPORTS SAY OSAMA BIN LADEN’S SON KILLED

situation is the worst. A DGHS study identified a six-fold increase in the Aedes aegypti mosquito population in four months in Dhaka as the primary cause of the larger-than-average outbreak. Earlier this month, the World Health Organization said the dengue situation in Bangladesh was "alarming but

not out of control." Other countries in Asia are also facing a surge in dengue cases this year, including Thailand, where 53,699 cases and 65 deaths were reported as of July 23. Nevertheless, with dengue cases soaring in recent weeks, Dhaka hospitals have been running out of room and manpower to treat new patients.

Osama bin Laden's son Hamza, chosen heir to the leadership of Al-Qaeda, has been killed, US media reported, citing American officials. NBC News said three US officials had confirmed they had information of Hamza bin Laden's death, but gave no details of the place or date. The New York Times subsequently cited two US officials saying they had confirmation that he was killed during the last two years in an operation that involved the United States. Questioned by reporters in the Oval Office, President Donald Trump did not confirm or deny the NBC report. “I don’t want to comment on it,” he said. Hamza bin Laden was named a “specially designated global terrorist” in January 2017. Both reports suggested that Hamza bin Laden may have been killed well before the US State Department announced a $1 million bounty on his head in February 2019.


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in brief FLIGHT ATTENDANT FOUND HIDING IN OVERHEAD BIN Flight attendants are typically the first port of call for passengers if anything goes wrong. So it is with some surprise that those on board a US flight discovered one member of cabin crew hiding in an overhead luggage bin. Passenger Veronica Lloyd captured the moment on video, in which a Southwest Airlines flight attendant was spotted lying in an overhead locker during boarding. Lloyd captioned her video: “I can’t get over how weird I find this.” A Southwest Airlines spokesperson said: “One of our flight attendants attempted to have a brief moment of fun with customers during boarding. Of course, this is not our normal procedure.”

WOMAN KICKED OFF BUS FOR ‘SHOWING TOO MUCH’ A woman in Sweden was left “humiliated” and “furious” after she was kicked off the bus for not wearing enough clothes. Amanda Hansson, 19, boarded a bus wearing shorts and a top in the 27°C heat. But, the driver stopped Hansson. “He says, ‘you can’t go dressed like that on our buses... you show way too much’,” she wrote on Facebook. She claims he said her outfit contravened the bus company’s dress policy. She said the incident made her feel humiliated. The bus firm, Nobina Sverige AB, and local transport provider, Skanetrafiken, have apologised for the incident, emphasising that no such policy exists.

SAUDI ARABIA ALLOWS WOMEN TO TRAVEL WITHOUT MALE CONSENT Saudi Arabia has allowed women to travel abroad without approval from a male "guardian". The reform ends the longstanding guardianship system that renders women permanently as legal minors and allows their "guardians" - husband, father and other male relatives - to exercise arbitrary authority over them. The regulation effectively allows women over the age of 21 to obtain passports and leave the country without their guardian's permission. The decision comes after highprofile attempts by women to escape their guardians despite a string of reforms, including a historic decree last year that overturned the world's only ban on female motorists." A passport will be granted to any Saudi national who submits an application," said a government ruling published in the official gazette Umm Al Qura.

FIVE KILLED, SEVERAL INJURED IN INDONESIA QUAKE Five people were killed and several others were injured after a powerful undersea earthquake rocked Indonesia's heavily populated Java island, triggering a brief tsunami warning, the national disaster agency said. The 6.9 magnitude quake sent residents fleeing to higher ground, while many in the capital Jakarta ran into the streets. An official from Indonesia's national disaster agency warned the quake could generate a tsunami, but the alert was lifted several hours later. Three people died of heart attacks as the strong quake rocked the region, a spokesman said. Another person fell to his death while trying to flee his house when the jolt happened, he said, while a fifth victim died from a panic attack. Many other people were injured and more than 200 buildings were damaged, the spokesman added.

Four of 24 Indians on seized Iranian tanker face prosecution GIBRALTAR: Four of the 24 Indians on seized Iranian oil tanker in Gibraltar will face prosecution, officials privy to the case said. The accused have been charged of violating European Union sanctions and will have to undergo a judicial process for obtaining bail. The tanker, identified as Grace 1, was apprehended by the United Kingdom's Royal Marines on July 4. The ship was charged of violating the EU sanctions by attempting to supply oil for a refinery based in Syria. The remaining 20 crew members are expected to be repatriated soon, said the Mumbai-based company which had placed them for a maritime

job on the Iranian vessel. The Gibraltar authorities have claimed that the vessel is loaded to capacity with crude oil en route to Syria, in breach of the European Union (EU) sanctions and confirmed that the next hearing in the case is scheduled

for August 15. "Three consular officials had meetings with the crew on the high seas. They are safe and well and remain in contact with their families,” the Indian High Commission said in a statement in London. "Further meetings

are planned with Gibraltar officials. All help will be extended to the Indian nationals,” the statement noted. According to reports from India, the total number of Indians aboard the vessel are 24. Royal Gibraltar Police (RGP) had earlier said that the senior crew members who were arrested and questioned had been bailed as the investigation continues. The Gibraltar government confirmed that “on an application by the Attorney General, the Supreme Court has extended the period of detention of the vessel, Grace 1, for a further 30 days and has set a new hearing for 15 August 2019.”

Australia to extend its working holiday visa scheme to Indians MELBOURNE: Australia plans to expand the ‘Working Holiday Maker’ visa programme to over a dozen countries, including India, to recruit workers for regional areas where it is facing labour shortage particularly on farms, immigration minister David Coleman said. The Australian government’s ‘Working Holiday Maker Programme’, which includes the ‘Working Holiday Visa’ and the ‘Work and Holiday Visa’, is a cultural exchange programme which enables young travellers to have an extended holiday and earn money through short term employment. The Australian government is in discussions to extend the scheme to include backpackers from 13 countries to find workers wanted by regional businesses to work on farms. Apart from India, other nations

which were being targeted by Australia to expand the work and holiday visa were from Brazil, Mexico, the Philippines, Switzerland, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Croatia, Latvia, Lithuania, Andorra, Monaco and Mongolia. Coleman said the government was working on expanding work and holiday visa

conditions in an effort to recruit workers to regional areas, according to a report by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Under the current programme that allowed backpackers to work while they stay was witnessing a decline thus creating workers shortage issue in regional parts of the

country. About 150,000 people were in Australia on a working holiday visa in March, but the programme has shrunk over the past five years. Coleman said the changes were designed to resolve labour shortages in regional areas, particularly on farms.“We know that working holidaymakers travel further into regional areas than most other international visitors,” he said, adding “They also spend substantial amounts, helping to boost regional economies.” Changes to the backpacker visa have been welcomed by farmers but have concerned some academics. Currently, Australia offers two types of Work and Holiday programme visa under Subclass 417 and subclass 462 with Indian passport holders not eligible for both the categories.

Police arrest ex-vice president of Maldives after India denies entry MALPES (MALDIVES): Maldives police have arrested former vice president Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor, who had sought asylum in India after fleeing the Indian Ocean archipelago nation to avoid questioning over the alleged embezzlement of state funds. He reached the coast of Thoothukudi in Tamil Nadu onboard a tug vessel. Adheeb, who is facing trial in the Malpes, had tried to enter India to seek political asylum, but government sources said he was denied entry as he did not come through a designated entry point and did not possess valid travel documents. He was sent back to his country on 10 July and was received by a team of security personnel near the

Ahmed Adheeb Abdul Ghafoor

international maritime boundary. London-based legal group Guernica 37, which is representing Adeeb, said they would approach the United Nations. "As we now believe he is being detained by the Malpian authorities, we will be

petitioning the United Nations Special Procedures in Geneva, in particular, the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention." Adheeb's lawyers in London had requested India to grant him political asylum, citing threat to his life from the current dispensation in the Malpes. Adheeb is a key witness in a money laundering case against Abdulla Yameen, who lost the presidential election to Ibrahim Mohamed Solih in September last year. A senior Malpian official had earlier said that Adheeb was supposed to appear before investigators earlier this

week. In 2016, Adeeb, one of the richest and influential politicians of the Malpes, who was Vice-President from July 22 to November 5, 2015, was sentenced to 15 years in jail for allegedly plotting to assassinate Yameen. He was also convicted of corruption and terrorism and faces a total sentence of 33 years. This year, a court-ordered a fresh trial on the same charges after cancelling his convictions, citing undue political interference. India and the Maldives enjoy a strong relationship, with Maldivian Defence Forces Chief Abdulla Shamaal thanking New Delhi last month for playing the role of a "security guarantor" for peace and stability within the greater Indian Ocean region.


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Café Coffee Day founder Siddhartha laid to rest in family estate MANGALURU (Karnataka): Café Coffee Day founder and billionaire entrepreneur V G Siddhartha, whose body was recovered from the Nethravati river near Mangaluru 36 hours after he went missing, was cremated at his family’s coffee estate in Chatanahalli village in Hassan district. His eldest son Amartya Hegde lit the funeral pyre after the last rites were performed in an atmosphere marked by quiet grief, as his mother Malavika Hegde and grandfather and former Chief Minister S M Krishna struggled with their emotions. Thousands of people paid their last respects to Siddhartha at Coffee Day Global Ltd, a firm owned by him in Chikkamagaluru town. His body was found by a group of local fishermen in the

Family members and relatives pay their last respects to the mortal remains of Cafe Coffee Day founder VG Siddhartha

Nethravati river near Mangaluru. He had gone missing from the bridge on the river and an intensive search by a 300-strong team had failed to find the body. Three fishermen found the body floating near

the Hoigebazar area where the river joins the Arabian sea. They brought it ashore and informed the police. The police also recovered the mobile phone of Siddhartha. Meanwhile, the police are

continuing investigations into the circumstances that led to his death, with a letter purportedly written by him, blaming the Income Tax Department for his extreme step. While the IT department has expressed doubts about the veracity of the letter, the police say that it would be treated as dying declaration, after checking its authenticity. The board of Coffee Day Enterprises Ltd is also considering getting an independent forensic study of the letter. They need not wait for the police investigation to take up independent inquiry, said a source. Many politicians, including former chief minister Siddaramaiah, said that “harassment” by central agencies had pushed the entrepreneur to the brink.

PUNJAB

Nagar kirtan from Pak reaches India for first time after partition ATTARI-WAGAH BORDER: For the first time after independence, the 'Nagar Kirtan', which was taken out from Nankana Sahib district of Pakistan's Punjab province, arrived via the Attari-Wagah border to mark the 550th birth anniversary celebrations of the Sikhism founder, Guru Nanak Dev. On July 30, nearly 500 Sikh devotees had crossed over Pakistan to bring the 'Nagar Kirtan' to India. The procession crossed the zero line to enter the Indian side with the holy saroop of Guru Granth Sahib carried by Golden Temple head granthi Giani Jagtar Singh on his head. The additional granthi of the Golden Temple received the holy saroop on the zero line for continuing

the procession that will visit 17 Indian states before culminating at Sultanpur Lodhi, the historic town in Kapurthala district, where Guru Nanak spent his 14 years. A rousing welcome was given to the holy saroop from Nankana Sahib, the birthplace of the first Sikh master. A red carpet was rolled out on the way of the nagar kirtan and petals were showered on it with newly released shabad ‘Kal Taran Gur Nanak Aya’ sung by Bollywood playback singer Sukhwinder Singh being played in the spectators’ gallery. Thousands of people gathered to welcome the nagar kirtan led by the Panj Pyaras (five beloved ones of the Guru) and the saroop of the holy book. Langars were organised at different places along the

stretch. Several ministers of the Punjab Government, along with senior officials of the Amritsar district administration, received the Nagar Kirtan at the border. The top leadership of the opposition Shriomani Akali Dal was also present. A large number of devotees from the Indian side stormed the roads when the Nagar Kirtan

arrived in a decorated palanquin. An official of the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC) said a large cavalcade followed the religious procession from Gurdwara Nankana Sahib to Wagah border amid a thick security cover. The SGPC was involved in organising the event with the support from both Indian and Pakistani authorities.

WEST BENGAL

Mamata launches 'Didi Ko Bolo' campaign to connect with voters KOLKATA: West Bengal chief minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee, launched 'Didi Ko Bolo' campaign in an attempt to connect with people and strengthen her party at the grassroots level. The campaign is not just a direct communication platform with the West Bengal chief minister, but is also intended to have multiple ‘trackers’ and ‘buckets’ (software) where problems and suggestions will be listed for prompt action. Around 1,000 Trinamool Congress leaders will be heading towards 10,000 Bengal villages over the next 100 days as part of the party's first major programme ahead of the

assembly elections in 2021. Announcing the initiative at a press conference, Mamata said that the party would decide who would visit where. The announcement was made after Mamata's meeting with MLAs and other senior leaders. The party leaders would visit the villages and lend their ears to booth workers, influential people in the area, anyone who wishes to voice grievances or raise concerns. A party helpline number and a website www.didikebolo.com have been launched for people to reach out to Mamata directly. Mamata, however, said that this was not

part of her campaign for the assembly elections. "We are not starting our campaign now. A lot of time is left and there is work to be done. We want to provide a platform to the people so that they can share their concerns." During these visits, the party

functionaries will spend at least three hours interacting with people, to understand their problems and provide appropriate solutions. The unresolved issues will be conveyed to Mamata, who will look into them personally. At the end of their visit, the ruling party's representative will hoist the TMC flag at a place of significance. The initiative is also the first such step announced by TMC after roping in poll strategist Prashant Kishor. Banerjee, however, is readying to fight back and her comeback strategy appears to be targeted towards winning back her rural support.

in brief 526 TEETH REMOVED FROM CHENNAI BOY'S MOUTH

Doctors have extracted 526 teeth from the mouth of a seven-year-old at a hospital in Chennai. The doctors at Saveetha dental college and Hospital said that the the boy was brought with a swelling in his lower right jaw. An X-ray and CT-scan of the boy's lower right jaw showed a lot of rudimentary teeth following which the doctors decided on the surgery. Though some were very tiny particles, the doctors said, they had the properties of teeth. It took five long hours for the doctors to remove all the minute teeth from the sack. "It was reminiscent of pearls in an oyster," the doctors said.

DISQUALIFIED KARNATAKA MLAS MOVE SC All the 14 disqualified Congress and Janata Dal (Secular) MLAs in Karnataka moved the Supreme Court, challenging their disqualification as legislators from the state assembly. The disqualified MLAs have sought quashing of the July 25 order of disqualification by KR Ramesh Kumar, who resigned as Speaker of the House. While three who rebelled against the former Congress-JD(S) government, were expelled on July 25, the rest were disqualified July 28. The MLAs moved the Supreme Court two days after Congress expelled the 14 rebel MLAs from the party. All the MLAs, who resigned from the state legislature, had abstained from voting that led to the defeat of the Congress-JD(S) government in the trust vote.

HARYANA TO RECRUIT 400 PUNJABI TEACHERS Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar said that his government would soon recruit 400 Punjabi teachers in the state and will also build a grand museum in Kurukshetra to depict the history of Sikh gurus. Khattar was speaking at a function organised ahead of the 550 Prakash Utsav of first Sikh Guru Nanak Dev. He said the 9.75 acres of land on which the historic Gurdwara Chilla Sahib is built in Sirsa, where Guru Nanak Dev had spent 40 days, will be transferred in the name of the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee. A dharamshala will also be constructed in Sirsa district. Khattar said the state government would provide all support and cooperation to the gurdwara for projects of public welfare.

AFTER BENGAL, ODISHA'S 'RASAGOLA' GETS GI TAG Odisha has been awarded the Geographical Indication (GI) tag for its sweet "Rasagola", a year after the state applied for it. Odisha had applied for the tag after it lost the bitter battle to West Bengal over the ownership of the sweetmeat in November 2017. The Registrar of Geographical Indications in Chennai has issued a certificate registering the sweetmeat as ''Odisha Rasagola". The certificate will be valid till February 22, 2028, official sources said. A GI tag recognises a product as distinctive to a particular locality or region. The Speaker of the Odisha Legislative Assembly Surjya Narayan Patro shared a photograph of the certificate on Twitter.


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INDIA / HERITAGE & HISTORY

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10 - 16 August 2019

Gandhiji observed fast Heavy rains lash on 15 August 1947 Gujarat, Maharashtra • •

Patel was sarcastic about the Mahatma joining Shaheed Suhrawardy Father of the Nation was away to Calcutta, did ‘t join the celebration

So you have got detained in Calcutta and that too in a quarter which is a veritable shambles and a notorious den of gangsters and hooligans. And in what choice company too! It is a terrible risk. But more than that, will your health stand the strain? I am afraid, it must be terribly filthy there. Keep me posted about yourself.” This was the communication from Sardar Patel to Mahatma Gandhi on 13 August 1947 in reply to the Mahatma’s message saying, “I have got stuck here and am now going to undertake a grave risk. Suharawardy and I are going from today to stay together in a Muslim quarter.” Pyarelal, a secretary to the Mahatma quotes the exchange of communication between a disciple and Guru in “ Mahatma Gandhi: The Last Phase”. The Independence of India was just two days away and the Father of the Nation, as the title was coined by Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose in 1944 for the first time, was not to participate in the celebration at Delhi.

Vehicles navigate their way through a flooded street in Mumbai.

Rains continued to wreak havoc across India, especially in Maharashtra, Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh. Normal life across many districts in Maharashtra was affected with numerous rivers running above the danger mark in Mumbai, Raigad, Nashik, Sangli, Satara, Dhule, Kolhapur, Thane and Palghar districts. According to India Meteorological Department, Mumbai has received over 100 mm rain while the suburbs, Thane and Navi Mumbai got more than 250 mm downpour. Rail services across Central and Harbour line have been thrown off track due to excessive water-logging across numerous railway stations. Many long distance trains have been cancelled while air traffic has also been affected to some extent. The Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai evacuated people staying around Mithi River in Mumbai while Thane administration has sounded alarm for people staying on the

Water-logged Olpad in Surat district

banks of Barvi and Ulhas rivers. The Maharashtra government has also issued an advisory in the state, with schools closed in many districts and citizens asked to step out of home only if absolutely necessary. Several relief camps have also been set up by the state administration. The Mumbai-Goa national highway was shut for road traffic due to rise in the water levels of Jagbudi and Vashishti rivers in the Konkan region. According to the weather exerts, the heavy downpour is the result of the development of an Upper Air Cyclonic Circulation in the Arabian Sea. A flood-like situation has developed in Nashik district after water was released from Gangapur dam into the Godavari river. More than 20,000 cusecs of water was released from the Gangapur dam, which led to the Godavari river flowing above the danger mark. At least 400 people from a residential area of Kranti Nagar located near the Mithi river in Mumbai were shifted after it crossed

the danger mark. At least 58 people, who were stranded at a village in Thane, were rescued by the Air Force. The Maharashtra government sought at least six more teams of National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) for rescue and relief operations for Mumbai, Thane and Palghar in view of the heavy rains. 45 airlifted & 9,000 shifted in flood-hit South Gujarat Flood situation in Navsari was grim with all major rivers including Kim, Ambika and Purna flowing very close or above their danger marks, leaving at least 50 villages flooded. The Navsari district administration had to seek the help of the Indian Air Force to airlift 45 persons stranded in five-footdeep waters in Mendhar village of Gandevi taluka due to incessant rainfall. The swelling Ambika and Purna rivers forced shifting of around 5,392 people to safer places in Navsari town and villages of Chikhli and Jalalpore talukas and 2,836 in Olpad and Mangrol talukas. The NDRF also rescued 140 people who were trapped in their homes in Kuwarda village on the banks of overflowing Kim river in Mangrol taluka. Umarpada in Surat district received the highest rainfall of 416 mm. Train movement was badly hampered due to waterlogging on railway tracks between Kosamba and Gothaj stations of Bharuch-Surat sections. District collector and municipal commissioner (in- charge), Shalini Agrawal said, “We are responding to the rescue calls. We have completed all evacuation work and now relief campaign has been undertaken.” Sickness, stench grip Vadodara Even though rain has subsided in Vadodara, the situation is far from normal as several hundreds of people continued to live in societies inundated in the five-day monsoon fury. Even though the situation in Vadodara has improved, the worst fears of illness have also started coming true with nearly 15,000 people suffering from fever and stomach infection after consuming contaminated water. The receding flood waters brought to fore stinking garbage on the roads, forcing the administration to mount a Herculean cleaning effort.

Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy was a Calcutta politician, a man who had just been Chief Minister of undivided Bengal, a sharp critic of Gandhi, whom he described as “that old fraud”. Gandhi now invited Suhrawardy to join him in the attempt to bring peace to Calcutta. “Hyderi Mansion”, a deserted Muslim house was found in the section of the city called Beliaghata and someone got the keys. Here Horace Alexander, who wrote the biography of Gandhi – entitled “Gandhi Through Western Eyes” published in 1969, joined Mahatma Gandhi and his new partner, suhrawardy, on the afternoon of 13 August. Alexander writes: “Earlier in the day Mahatma Gandhi and Suhrawardy at Hyderi Mansion Gandhi had found a moment to tell me personally how he intended to spend it is difficult to believe that the year of Independence Day. He said nothing about mutual hatred and distrust the two great the division of the country into India and religious communities of Calcutta would so Pakistan. Nor did he, at that moment, suddenly have turned to goodwill and trust suggest that the independence was unreal. without the example of the extraordinary But he was concerned that the people of pact of friendship made by Mahatma India should put first things first and not Gandhi with his bitter critic Suhrawardy. As turn the day into a mere jollification. Those Pyarelal records, on the Independence Day, who were with him at that moment would Gandhiji woke up at 2 a.m.- an hour earlier join him in prayer and fasting. than usual. It being the fifth Next Column: At every decisive moment in death anniversary of Mahadev the national life, the Lord Krishna’s Ghazni Desai also, he observed fast. appropriate thing was to turn connection Rajaji, the Governor of West first to God, in thanks giving Bengal, came to see Gandhiji that he had brought the country this far on and ‘they exchanged sallies of wit, jokes and the road, and to pray for the courage and words of mellowed wisdom for an hour’. wisdom to continue in the paths of justice Unfortunately, after Suhrawardy, jointly and right action.” with Sarat Bose, the elder brother of Netaji, The total change that came upon failed in his efforts for ‘Sovereign Calcutta on the morning of 15 August 1947 United Bengal’ opted for Pakistan as a miracle depends perhaps chiefly on the and became the Dr. Hari Desai meaning attached to the word “miracle”. It fifth Prime was certainly and extraordinary event, quite Minister. (The writer is a Sociounforgettable to those who experience it. political Historian. There can also be varying opinions about the E-mail: haridesai@gmail.com) extent to which it was due to Gandhiji. But

Instant triple talaq becomes a crime in India Nearly two years after the Supreme Court set aside the centuries-old practice of instant triple talaq or talaq-e-biddat calling it unIslamic, arbitrary and not an integral part of religious practice, The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2019 got the stamp of Parliament when it was cleared by Rajya Sabha, after it got the nod from Lok Sabha. The passage of the bill is a major win for the government given that ruling NDA lacks numbers in Rajya Sabha. The Bill was passed with 99 votes in favour and 84 against after BJD came out in support, allies JD (U) and AIADMK walked out while the Opposition BSP, TDP and TRS did a no-show. Prime Minister Narendra Modi hailed the passage of the Bill: “An archaic and medieval practice has finally been confined to the dustbin of history! Parliament abolishes Triple Talaq and corrects a historical wrong done to Muslim women. This is a victory of gender justice and will further equality in society. India rejoices today!” Home Minister Amit Shah described it as a great day for democracy: “I congratulate PM @narendramodi ji for fulfilling his commitment and ensuring a law to ban triple talaq, which will free Muslim women from the curse of this regressive practice. I thank all parties who

supported this historic Bill.” This was a second setback for the Opposition in a week - its attempt to force referral of The Right to Information (Amendment) Bill, 2019 to a Select Committee had failed last week. While participating in the debate, the AIADMK opposed the Bill and demanded that it be sent to a Select Committee, but staged a walkout hours before the motion was put to vote. Opposition benches too were not full. Introducing the Bill, Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad called it a historic day. The law, he said, follows from the Supreme Court judgment of 2017 but even after that, newspapers have reported 574 cases of instant triple talaq. It is a matter of gender justice, gender dignity and gender equality, Prasad said. Among the frivolous reasons for which instant triple talaq has been given, he said, are things like a roti gone wrong or because the wife asked for money to buy vegetables. The Opposition’s main objection to the bill was declaration of triple talaq as a cognizable offence, attracting up to three years imprisonment with a fine. Speaker after speaker referred to it, saying that a Muslim woman who has been given triple talaq and her children will be left in the lurch if the husband is sent to jail.


26 INDIA

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10 - 16 August 2019

Former foreign minister Sushma Swaraj is no more Senior BJP leader and former foreign minister Sushma Swaraj passed away at AIIMS on Tuesday. The BJP veteran, who suffered a massive heart attack, died at the age of 67. Her last Twitter post was about thanking Prime Minister Narendra Modi about the government’s move on Kashmir stating that she was waiting for this day in her lifetime. Swaraj, who was Bharatiya Janata Party’s most prominent woman face, did not contest the recently held Lok Sabha elections in which the party won with a massive majority. Last November, she had announced she would not contest the

general elections. On the demise of Sushma Swaraj, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, "An excellent administrator, Sushma Ji set high standards in every Ministry she handled. She played a key role in bettering India’s ties with various nations. As a Minister we also saw her compassionate side, helping fellow Indians who were in distress in any part of the world." Sushma Ji was a prolific orator and outstanding Parliamentarian. She was admired and revered across party lines. She was uncompromising when it came to matters of ideology and interests of the BJP,

Sushma Swaraj

whose growth she immensely contributed to. Former Chief Election Commissioner Dr SY

Quraishi said, “I feel devastated to hear the sad news about passing on of Sushma Swaraj. Ever since

she became my minister in 1977 in Haryana (youngest minister in the country) she had been very fond of me. She brought me as DG Doordarshan. Always a pillar of support. I love you ma’am! RIP.” Shocked and deeply saddened by this tragic news of the demise of Sushma Swaraj, Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi said, “My sincerest condolences. Knew her from SC days, as highly cultured attendee at my wife’s ghazal & sufi recitals, most graceful, powerful orator, warm & helpful. Very soft & considerate yet committed to causes.” Shashi Tharoor in a tweet said, "Shocked and

saddened by this news. She was a brilliant speaker in Hindi, a genuine "people's person" in Government & I was proud of our excellent relationship when I chaired the External Affairs Committee. Om Shanti..." Swaraj was perhaps the most 'millennial' minister the Indian government has ever had. From being tagged the 'supermom' of India by Washington Post to becoming one of the mostfollowed politicians on Twitter, the late external affairs minister had truly struck a chord with young and old alike with her round-the-clock social media presence, eagerness to help, and ready wit on social media.

SC to hold day-to-day hearing in Ayodhya case from Aug 6 The Supreme Court has decided to commence dayto-day hearing from August 6 on the 2.77-acre Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid disputed land in Ayodhya after the high-level mediation panel expressed its inability to resolve the contentious issue. Speculations are that an order in the vexed case may come about before CJI Ranjan Gogoi’s term ends in November. A swift 10-minute proceeding held on July 2 saw a five-judge bench of CJI Gogoi and Justices S A Bobde, D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan and S Abdul Nazir deciding the issue. Immediately after the bench assembled, CJI Gogoi dictated the order and said the mediation panel headed by former SC judge FMI Kalifulla had reported that

attempts for a negotiated settlement had failed. “Therefore, we have decided to commence hearing on pending appeals from August 6 on a day-to-day basis till arguments get completed,” the bench said. The appeals of Nirmohi Akhara and deity Ram Lalla would be heard first, said the bend. Senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, for the Muslim parties, objected raising technical issues relating to some of the 18 pending petitions. He asked why the Bench chose to hear these two parties first. He said some of the Muslim parties had filed the first case. But the court did not relent. Dhavan then submitted that he would need 20 full days to argue his

case and his submissions should not be curtailed. “We will see about it... Let us start hearing the appeals,” Chief Justice Gogoi replied making it plain that the court would brook no further delay in the adjudication of the appeals pending for nearly a decade

in the court. Questions about the efficacy of the mediation process came under the spotlight after an application was filed by Gopal Singh Visharad, an original claimant to the disputed land who filed a title suit way back in 1950,

through his survivor Rajendra Singh, on July 9, claiming that the Justice Kalifulla committee was making no progress. The application urged the court to stop mediation and start adjudication on the pending Ayodhya appeals. On July 18, the Bench asked the mediation committee to submit a report on the outcome of mediation proceedings held between July 31 and August 1 with Hindu and Muslim parties to amicably resolve the over 7 0 - y e a r - o l d Ramjanmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title spat. The mediation panel conveyed that they had failed to strike a consensus among rival parties and it was time to wind up the mediation

process. Hindu and Muslim parties have challenged the Allahabad HC’s 2010 verdict dividing the 2.77-acre disputed land into three equal parts with one each to Ram Lalla (the idol), Nirmohi Akhara and Sunni waqf board. The SC’s first order on the Ayodhya appeals, against the HC’s judgment, was passed in May 2011 by a bench of Justices Aftab Alam and R M Lodha, which stayed the HC verdict. Completion of pleadings in the Ayodhya case, an exercise which required dealing with the HC judgment and accompanying documents running into thousands of pages, took years and finally a three-judge bench led by then CJI Dipak Misra decided to commence hearing in December 2017.

India refuses to accept ‘impeded’ access to Jadhav India rejected Pakistan's offer for consular access to Kulbhushan Jadhav, saying it wanted “unimpeded” access to the Indian national in Pakistan’s custody. Official sources said Pakistan was asked to provide consular access to Jadhav “in an environment free from the fear of intimidation and reprisal, in the light of the orders of the International Court of Justice (ICJ).” This means India doesn’t want the presence of Pakistani officials while Indian officials meet Jadhav. After its response in the form of a note verbale, India is now awaiting Islamabad’s reaction. However, Islamabad is

unlikely to allow Indian officials to speak to Jadhav in private. It has basically laid down three conditions. First, the presence of a Pakistani official in the room where Indian officials will speak to Jadhav. Second, the room will have CCTVs and, third, it will have sound recording facilities. This means Pakistani authorities will be able to listen to every word of the conversation. Pakistan apparently thinks this is in line with "universal" practices and also in keeping with India's own laws. Addressing a weekly press briefing in Islamabad, foreign office spokesperson Mohammad Faisal said

Kulbhushan Jadhav

work was being done on granting consular access to Jadhav and that measures were being taken in accordance with last month’s decision of the ICJ. He said India was informed that Jadhav could be granted consular access on August 2. The 42-page ruling by International

Court of Justice (ICJ) on July 17 had held Pakistan guilty of violating the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and called for consular access to Jadhav. The international court asked for an effective review and reconsideration of the conviction and death sentence to Jadhav. Pakistan

had responded by saying it was going to work out the modalities for consular access in line with Pakistani laws. With Pakistan not showing any sign of diluting these conditions, the government may consider moving ICJ again for what it has described as full consular access. Before that though, the government is likely to continue pressing Pakistan for the same diplomatically. This could mean again issuing a series of note verbale to Pakistan for access to Jadhav in line with the ICJ judgment. “This is not an ordinary case and Pakistan’s offer was against the spirit of the ICJ judgment. The whole

purpose of consular access will be defeated if it’s carried out in the way Pakistan is suggesting,’’ said a source. Pakistan arrested a 24year-old Indian from Balochistan province on March 3, 2016 for allegedly spying on a nuclear enhancement facility in eastern Punjab province, after he reportedly entered from Iran. Pakistani officials identified the ‘spy’ as Rajo alias Raju Laxman of ‘Nimarkhedi, Indore’. MP police could not find anyone by the name in Indore division. However, India maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Navy.


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HEALTH & LIFESTYLE

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10 - 16 August 2019

IBS is more than a dozen different conditions in brief Picture the scenario: you have endured weeks, months or even years of anxiety, embarrassment and crippling stomach symptoms. Every meal time sparks fear of relentless pain, sometimes extreme bloating and maybe a mad dash to the loo. At other times, even going at all can be a struggle. Doctors seem unable to find the reason – a few tests might have ruled out ‘anything serious’ such as cancer and other diseases. The advice? Stop drinking coffee, keep a food diary to identify ‘triggers’, and try not to worry too much. Google searches prove baffling too: cut carbs, fat or sugar, or invest in a subscription for dubious-looking supplements. All of this will, undoubtedly, sound familiar to millions of Britons who have been slapped with a diagnosis of irritable bowel syndrome – more commonly known as IBS. Studies estimate that at least one in five people in the UK suffers from the condition. And many will have tales of endless medical checks which fail to give answers. For years, because a physical cause is often elusive, patients were made to feel their problem was ‘all in the mind’. But today, GPs have a range of tests at their disposal that can help flag up what might be the matter. Indeed, last month, in a review of more than 220 scientific papers, researchers at the British College of Nutrition and Health suggested that IBS was the

result of not one, but more than a dozen different diseases and conditions. The ‘catch-all’ term IBS was being used to describe illnesses that, when correctly diagnosed, require distinct treatment. They also identified a host of lifestyle factors that, if tackled, could bring about huge relief. Lead author, nutritionist Ben Brown, even went as far as to say the term IBS should be banned to ‘prevent years of unnecessary suffering’. He added: ‘Both doctors and the patient should be digging deeper, and trying to understand why they have these symptoms.’ Professor David Sanders, a consultant gastroenterologist at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital in Sheffield, said: ‘On the outside, it seems like a single condition, but there are many different diseases that could be the cause that aren’t totally obvious at first glance. Patients can also have more than one condition at the same time. That’s why it’s often hard to work out what is going on. But when we do, and are able to give effective treatment, it can transform a patient’s life.’ Here are a few of the conditions that are commonly put down to IBS. Tiredness could be coeliac disease: Coeliac disease happens when the body’s immune system, which usually protects against infection, mistakenly attacks healthy gut tissue. It does this in reaction to gluten, a protein in wheat, barley and rye – although the reason

why is not known. One in four people with coeliac disease has previously been diagnosed with IBS. And while the condition is estimated to affect at least one in 100 people in the UK, only 30 per cent are currently diagnosed. Symptoms start after a milky drink could be lactose intolerance: About five per cent of Britons are lactose intolerant. It means the body doesn’t produce enough of an enzyme called lactase, which digests lactose, the sugar in dairy. Symptoms usually come on a few hours after consuming milk, yogurt or cheese as the undigested lactose causes the intestines to go into overdrive, producing fluid to try to dilute it. The sugars also begin to ferment, producing gas. The result? Classic IBS symptoms. Intolerance usually first emerges in older children and young adults as the amount of lactase you produce decreases as you get older. The amount of dairy that must be consumed to trigger symptoms varies, so the condition isn’t always obvious. A smaller number of people get symptoms because they are believed to be intolerant to gluten – not to be confused with coeliac disease, as described above. If there’s blood in the loo it

could be Crohn’s disease or colitis: Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis are the two most common types of inflammatory bowel disease – a term used to describe conditions that cause the digestive system to become inflamed. Both diseases are the result of the immune system going haywire and attacking healthy gut tissue, causing permanent damage. Experts are still unsure why this happens. Crohn’s disease can affect people of all ages, but symptoms usually begin in childhood or early adulthood. Symptoms include pain and swelling in the tummy, diarrhoea and extreme tiredness. You may also notice blood in your stools. Can’t stop rushing to the loo could be bile acid malabsorption: As many as a third of people diagnosed with IBS could actually have a condition called bile acid malabsorption. Bile is a substance that breaks down food and removes waste products after eating. Once it has done its job, bile is reabsorbed into the liver. But if the bowel is inflamed, damaged or too much bile acid is produced, digestive problems can occur. Causes include bacterial or viral stomach illnesses and removal of the gall bladder, the small pouch-like organ in the digestive system that stores bile. About six per cent of patients diagnosed with diarrhoea-dominant IBS are estimated to have a different condition – pancreatic exocrine insufficiency. This occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough enzymes.

20 NHS building projects given green light Boris Johnson has given the green light to 20 new building and infrastructure projects in the NHS in England. The £850m package will pay for new wards, intensive care units and diagnostic centres as well as refurbishing some existing facilities over the next five years. "It's part of a programme that the NHS asked for and I want to stress this is new money," the prime minister said. But doubts have been raised over whether the money really is new. Mr Johnson also said there would be an extra £1bn this year to improve and maintain existing buildings. The government had already committed to £6.7bn being spent on building and infrastructure, including IT, during 201920. But despite repeated requests, Number 10 has been unable to confirm whether that total figure will rise. Mr Johnson said the new money - less than 1% of the annual NHS budget - would mean "more beds, new wards, and extra life-saving equipment".

"It's time to face up to this challenge and make sure the NHS receives the funds it needs to continue being the best healthcare service in the world," he said. Mr Johnson previously said he was "determined to deliver" on the promises of the 2016 EU referendum, after criticism of the Vote Leave campaign's claim that £350m a week was being sent to the EU and could be spent on the NHS instead. Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the NHS was "priority number one" for the new prime minister. He said money for hospital upgrades was possible because the economy was growing and the funds would be available this year. Responding to the funding announcement, the Health Foundation said "years of under-investment in the NHS's infrastructure means this extra money risks being little more than a drop in the ocean". Ben Gershlick, from the charity, added that NHS facilities in England were "in major disrepair", with a £6bn maintenance backlog. Labour's shadow health

secretary, Jonathan Ashworth, said there was "huge scepticism" about whether the funding was new. Meanwhile, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said the announcement today on funding for the NHS "goes nowhere near paying for all the cuts over the past nine years". Mr Corbyn said "many hospitals had been left off" and "we need something a bit more comprehensive". But the head of NHS England, Simon Stevens, said the money was a "significant start" to "much needed capital investment". The government said other parts of the UK would benefit too. Health is devolved, so Wales, Scotland and

Northern Ireland make decisions about spending on the NHS. But under funding rules there would be money made available to them, ministers said. Later this week, the government is also expected to announce changes to the NHS pension scheme after senior doctors said new rules meant they could not afford to work extra shifts to tackle waiting lists. One hospital said the rule change, which means "punitive" taxes for doctors who take additional shifts and exceed the limit for pensions contributions, was the equivalent of losing 60 consultants. Mr Johnson has previously pledged to resolve the problem.

ALZHEIMER'S BLOOD TEST 'ONE STEP CLOSER' Researchers say they can accurately identify people on track to develop Alzheimer's disease before symptoms appear, which could help the progress of drug trials. US scientists were able to use levels of a protein in the blood to help predict its buildup in the brain. UK experts said the results were promising and a step towards a reliable blood test for Alzheimer's to speed up dementia research. But larger studies were needed first. Researchers from Washington University School of Medicine, in St Louis, Missouri, writing in Neurology, measured levels of one protein, called amyloid beta, in the blood of 158 adults aged over 50 to see if this matched levels found in brain scans. It did, but only 88% of the time - which is not accurate enough for a diagnostic test. When the researchers combined this information with two other risk factors for the disease - an age of over 65 and people with a genetic variant called APOE4, which at least triples the risk of the disease - the accuracy of the blood test improved to 94%.

AI MAY HELP TO SPOT HEART PROBLEMS A new way of identifying a common condition that causes the heart to beat irregularly may have been discovered by artificial intelligence. Atrial fibrillation affects one million people in the UK and increases the risk of stroke and long-term heart problems. It is relatively simple to diagnose when the heart is beating irregularly, but not when it returns to normal. Computer modelling at the Mayo Clinic in the US may have identified signs that indicate previous abnormalities. Researchers said it was still early days, but believe the system could lead to earlier and easier detection of the problem and, therefore, ensure patients get the right treatment, saving lives. The findings are published in The Lancet. Currently where these tests - known as electrocardiograms - do not find abnormal rhythms, doctors can ask the patient to undergo longer-term heart monitoring. But instead the computer modelling was asked to look out for what doctors believe are subtle signs of past irregular rhythms, including scarring of the heart, that are unable to be spotted by the human eye from test results. The computer modelling analysed tests carried out on nearly 181,000 patients between 1993 and 2017. They were all patients who had had normal test results at first. The modelling correctly identified the subsequent diagnosis from the normal test results in 83% of cases. But the team said the modelling now needed to be tested further to see if it could be deployed on the frontline. Prof Tim Chico, an expert in cardiology at the University of Sheffield, described the findings as "very important".

A QUARTER OF MILLENNIALS SAY THEY HAVE NO FRIENDS

Millennials are the loneliest generation in recent history, according to a new survey. Nearly one third of people between ages 22 and 37 said that they always or often feel lonely in a survey distributed by UK-based research company, YouGov. Comparatively, 20 percent of gen X-ers and 15 percent of baby boomers said they feel similarly isolated. Even more depressingly, another 20 percent of millennials said they believe they have no friends - an unprecedented sense of loneliness. Psychologists the world over have lamented that we are in the midst of a loneliness epidemic. Underlying increasing reports of loneliness is a vicious cycle: Isolation takes a toll on mental health, which in turn makes people withdraw, which in turn makes them more isolated and depressed, and so on. Isolation is blamed, in part, for surging rates of deaths of despair in the US, including fatal drinking, drug overdoses and suicides. It's not that previous generations haven't been isolated. In fact, arguably older people, many of whom grew up and into adulthood with fewer people in physical proximity, had fewer technological ways to connect. Millennials spent adolescence and, now, young adulthood with the ability not only to call, but to text, email, snap, tweet, post, IM and live stream one another from anywhere on the planet.

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Deepika's friend reveals her best kept secrets Actor Deepika Padukone's best friend Sneha Ramchander has written a special note on her website, joining the ranks of her friends, including husband Ranveer Singh and filmmakers Meghna Gulzar and Imtiaz Ali. Sneha shared the actress' most quirky habits and wrote, "Do you know someone whose presence feels like a warm hug and a hot cup of cocoa? Someone you can chat with for hours on end AND co-exist with happily in moments of silence and nothingness. Someone who has undeniably kind eyes... whose gaze makes you feel cared for at that moment. Someone who's so hyper-

organised that her most prized possession is most likely a label-maker, and she will gladly reorganise your home for you with it. Do you know someone who will steal, I mean to collect, miniature bottles of your favorite shampoo from hotels, when she travels, because she knows you love them? I do! I do! That's my darling friend, DP. It's a happy day for friends like us." Every month, one person who is close to Deepika shares a cherished memory on her website. On the work front, the actress will be seen as a real life acid attack survivor Laxmi Agarwal. It will hit theatres nationwide on January 10 next year. DP will also share screen space with Ranveer for the fourth time, in '83'. While Ranveer plays veteran cricketer Kapil Dev in the movie, his real life wife will play the role of his onscreen partner Romi Bhatia.

Bachchanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s prosthetics for 'Gulabo Sitabo' take 2 hours everyday Actor Amitabh Bachchan's look in his upcoming film 'Gulabo Sitabo' required a lot of hard work with the prosthetics. Filmmaker Shoojit Sircas has talked in detail about the amount of work that went into the character's look for the upcoming film starring Ayushmann Khurrana. A report quoted the director as

saying, "The shoot was planned for summer and heavy prosthetics tend to get uncomfortable for an actor, especially for facial skin. It took two hours to create the look every day and getting it off was

also tedious. But Bachchan was always enthusiastic and believed in our vision." The actor wrote about the use of prosthetics on his blog. He wrote, "Its been an exhausting day .. the use of prosthetics have been tiresome and they sap all you efforts away .. but then this is what we aimed for .. hesitant to disclose the look .. methinks it shall be with the print media soon .. till then .. my abbreviated resolve." Meanwhile, Sircar told the media, "Juhi (Chaturvedi, writer) and I worked on this script for some time. Ronnie (Lahiri, who produces the film with Sheel Kumar), Juhi and I felt Bachchan and Ayushmann would be ideal. Bachchan was like a curious child, while Ayush was in awe of him, like everyone else in the beginning." 'Gulaabo Sitabo' is set for release on April 24 next year. It refers to legendary pair of puppet sisters, part of Uttar Pradesh's folklore. The film is apparently a take on these two characters.

B-town drug controversy: MLA asks stars to take drug test

Vicky Kaushal turns chef for Indian Army

Actor Vicky Kaushal has turned chef for the troops at the IndoChina border area of Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh where he is spending tine with the Indian Army. The actor, who is all set to don the military uniform for the second time for a film, shared a series of pictures on Instagram making rotis for the first time in his life. He wrote, "The first-ever roti I made... glad it was for the

army." The pictures show an excited Kaushal in a green jacket and camo cap, taking cooking lessons from the chef of the Army mess and learning the art of making a roti. Earlier, the 'Manmarziyan' actor gave a glimpse of his visit by sharing a picture with personnel of the Indian army. He captioned the picture, "Elated to be getting an

opportunity to spend a few days with our Indian Army posted at 14,000 ft altitude at the IndoChina border of Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh." On the work front, Vicky will be seen next in films like in period drama 'Takht', 'Bhoot Part One- The Haunted Ship', and untitled film where he will be seen as Field Marshal Sam Manekshaw, helmed by Meghna Gulzar.

A Punjab MLA Manjinder Sirsa said that Bollywood actors, including Ranbir Kapoor, Deepika Padukone, Vicky Kaushal, and others at Karan Johar's house last week, were in a "drugged state". He asked them to undergo a dope test if they claim to be innocent. He has claimed that the actors who were introduced by Karan Johar in a candid video from his party were actually in a "drugged state". He wrote on Twitter, "#UDTABollywood- Fiction Vs Reality Watch how the high and mighty of Bollywood proudly flaunt their drugged state!! I raise my voice against #DrugAbuse by these stars. RT if you too feel disgusted @ s h a h i d k a p o o r @deepikapadukone @arjunk26 @Varun_dvn @karanjohar @vickykaushal09." When asked by a Twitter user why he cares that the guests at Karan's party were stoned or drugged, Sirsa said, "They are public figures!! They are called "Stars" & they enjoy many privileges. Don't they lecture us # on every issue from their verified twitter handles?

So today they are answerable to every Indian for their drug-effected stoned look as visible in video." Sirsa also demanded Karan, Deepika, Shahid, Varun Dhawan and Arjun Kapoor to undergo a dope test in order to prove their innocence. He responded to one user who was defending the celebrities, and wrote, "Since @IshitaYadav is so furiously defending the celebs & advocating their innocence in drugs... Let us all request @karanjohar @shahidkapoor @Varun_dvn @arjunk26 @deepikapadukone to get DOPE TEST done & share report on twitter. Pls prove me wrong by dope test report Ishita Ji." Sirsa has also refused to apologise to the actors after politician Milind Deora refuted his claim and demanded an apology. Deora revealed his wife had also attended Karan's party. He tweeted, "My wife was also present that evening (and is in the video). Nobody was in a "drugged state" so stop spreading lies & defaming people you don't know!"


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Dia Mirza announces separation from husband Sahil Sangha Actor Dia Miza has announced separation from her husband Sahil Sangha. She shared a joint statement on her social media accounts, requesting her fans and followers to respect their need for privacy at this time. She wrote, "After 11 years of sharing our lives and being together, we have mutually decided to separate. We remain friends and will continue to be there for each other with love and respect. While our journeys may lead us down different paths, we are forever grateful for the bond that we share with each other." She added, "We thank our family and our friends for all their love and understanding and members of the media for their continued support and

Priyanka and Nick Jonas in no hurry to have kids

Badshah can't wait to have 'sex talk' with his daughter Indian rap star Badshah believes sex shouldn't be shunned away as a taboo topic, and says he can't wait to have a sex talk with his daughter at the right age and plans to make it fun for her. "Can't you talk to your parents about sex? I can't. But that is something that we all must do," he said. The singer added, "I have a daughter and I can't wait to have this chat with her, of course at an appropriate age. I want her to know everything. I don't know how. Probably she will feel awkward like what happened to papa all of a sudden. I know I have to make it fun." Badshah had a daughter back in 2017. The rap star has picked a script which tackles the issue of sex education in India to mark his acting debut in Bollywood. He will be seen as a Punjabi popstar Gabru Ghaatak in his debut film 'Khandaani Shafakhana'. The movie is slated to release on August 2, and aims to put the spotlight on the issue of how Indian society considers sex a taboo topic through the journey of Sonakshi Sinha's character as shhe inherits her dead uncle's sex clinic. The 'Abhi toh Party Shuru Hui Hai' singer said he is fortunate that he got sex education while growing up. "I

request everyone to respect our need for privacy at this time. We will not be commenting any further on this matter. Thank you, Dia Mirza and Sahil Sangha." The two married on October 18, 2014 in a simple Arya Samaj ceremony in Delhi. She had then said, "I am very happy. It was a beautiful Arya Samaj ceremony. The vows were explained to us. It was wonderful because it was good to be conscious of what you are going through, and what are the vows you exchanging. It was a dream wedding." Dia and Sahil were in business together as well and the couple run a production house together, Born Free Entertainment.

was fortunate enough that I had sex education in my school. I did my schooling from Delhi. Sex is (very) natural. You need to know about the disorders, the importance of practising safe sex, importance of planning a family. Look at the population of the country. We all need to know about all these things." When asked about another issue close to his heart, Badshah said, "I grew up predominantly in Haryana, Punjab and Delhi. As soon as you move away from Delhi towards Punjab and Haryana. I think the girl child is still a taboo. People don't want to have a girl child. You get to know that wealth doesn't bring wisdom. You will be surprised to know the thoughts of people."

Priyanka Chopra and husband Nick Jonas have been married a little over six months and is in no hurry to announce a pregnancy any time soon. A media report said that having children is not their main focus right now, although they would like to start a family eventually. A source said, "Nick and Priyanka want kids, but right now it's not a priority. Both are extremely busy, and with the Jonas Brothers reuniting and being a massive success the couple is conscious (of) how much time the tour takes up." The Jonas brothers will begin his 'Happiness Begins' tour on August 7. The source said that the two have a when it happens, it happens attitude about their future family. "Nick and Priyanka haven't been putting pressure on having kids. They are enjoying married life, travelling and working. The couple is okay with when it happens, and it will be a blessing." Priyanka has often spoken about her desire to have kids with her husband. She recently told a magazine in its cover story that she's looking forward to raising their children when the timing is right. "I want to change the world a little bit. My big endgame is creating a formidable career and legacy for myself, but at the same time I want to have moved something. I want my existence to have meant something. I want my kids to turn around and be like, 'yeah, that was my mom'."

Sara Ali Khan seen meeting Kartik Aaryan secretly in Lucknow Actors Sara Ali Khan and Kartik Aaryan have been spotted together in Lucknow where the latter is currently busy filming the 'Pati Patni Aur Woh' remake with Bhumi Pednekar and Ananya Panday. Sara and Aaryan have long been rumoured to be dating and recently completed filming their first film together, Imtiaz Ali's 'Love Aaj Kal' follow up. The paps show Sara, dressed in casuals, hurriedly exiting her hotel and entering a car that is waiting for her outside. There are also other photos showing Kartik waiting inside the car. Just last week, Kartik had travelled to New Delhi, to show support for Sara as she made her ramp debut at the FDCI India Couture Week 2019. He was spotted cheering Sara on, sitting in the front row with her brother, Ibrahim Ali Khan. The two have been

spotted with Kartik in Lucknow, out on a food tour of Mumbai's famous restaurants. There was also a video showing Kartik shielding Sara from an incoming crowd as they made their way towards their car. The actors had taken turns to drop each other off and pick each other up from the airport as well, starting the grapevine of the two dating. On the work front, Sara will star with Varun Dhawan in 'Coolie No 1', and Kartik will a p p e a r opposite Janhvi Kapoor in 'Dostana 2', and is also reported to have signed a 'Bhool Bhulaiya' sequel.


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Vikram may be seen in 25 different looks in his next film TV Listing 05:00 07:32 10:26 13:32 16:49

* Schedule is subject to change

Actor Vikram, who was recently seen in 'Kadaram Kondan' is getting ready to begin work on his next yetuntitled Tamil project with director Ajay Gnanamuthu. He will reportedly be seen in 25 different avatars in the film. A report suggested Vikram will be seen in 25 getups, and his looks will be designed by a US-based company. If these reports are true, then Vikram will be first actor in the world to set a record for donning 25 looks in a film. To be produced by 7 Screen Studios in association with Viacom 18 Studios, the project will go on the floors in August and the makers plan to release it in April, 2020. A statement by the makers suggest, "This film will

be a Pan-Indian project catering to the Tamil, Hindi, and Telugu audience. It will be produced on a massive scale in association with Viacom 18 Motion Pictures. The cast and technicians will have big names of all industries collaborating for this film." Meanwhile, director Ajay Gnanamuthu said, "The only thing I can divulge right now is that Vikram's role will be a challenging one. Of course, he has always taken up challenging roles, but I think this one will be better than all of those. The rest of the cast and crew are yet to be finalised. However, it has been speculated that Priya Bhavani Shankar has been signed as the female lead. The film will have music by AR Rahman.

R Parthiepan’s 'Oththa Seruppu' goes international R Parthiepan’s 'Oththa Seruppu' gets selected for Singapore South Asian International Film Festival. The film has cinematography by Ramji while R Sudarshan is the editor of the film. The sound design for the film is done by Resul Pookutty. The makers had organised the audio and trailer of the film and were wellreceived by the audiences and critics alike. Now, there is an interesting announcement from Parthiepan himself. Taking to his social media, he has shared the news that this film is all set to have an international

premiere at the third edition of Singapore South Asian International Film Festival. The most unique element of this film is that it will have

TV PROGRAM NAMES

18:00 BEYHADH

18:30 VIGHNAHARTA GANESHA 19:00 MERE SAI

19:30 YEH UN DINON KI BAAT HAI * Schedule is subject to change

SATURDAY 10TH AUGUST TIME TV PROGRAM NAMES 18:30 THE KAPIL SHARMA SHOW 20:00 SUPERSTAR SINGER 21:30 THE KAPIL SHARMA SHOW 23:00 THE KAPIL SHARMA SHOW SUNDAY 11TH AUGUST TIME TV PROGRAM NAMES 18:30 THE KAPIL SHARMA SHOW 20:00 SUPERSTAR SINGER 21:30 THE KAPIL SHARMA SHOW 23:00 THE KAPIL SHARMA SHOW

20:00 CHANDRAGUPTA MAURYA

20:30 ISHAARON ISHAARON MEIN 21:00 PATIALA BABES

21:45 LADIES SPECIAL 22:30 CRIME PATROL

SONY MAX 2 PRIME TIME

19:00

MONDAY

19:00

TUESDAY

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THURSDAY

19:00 19:00

19:30: 20:00: 20:30: 21:00:

WEDNESDAY

PYAR KA MANDIR

CHANDNI

FRIDAY

MAJBOOR

KRANTIVEER

JAWANI DIWANI

BEPANNAH TERE NAAL ISHQ MOHE RANNG DO LAAL BALIKA VADHU - LAMHE PYAAR KE 22:00: RED ALERT SAT 3RD AUG 2019

* Schedule is subject to change

MON 29TH - FRI 2ND AUG 2019 13:00: SWARAGINI 15:30: INDIA UNLIMITED 16:00: THE GREAT INDIAN GLOBAL KITCHEN 2 16:30: RASOI SHOW 17:30: CHHUTA CHHEDA 18:00: RADHA PREM KI DEEWANI 18:30: BHARADWAJ BAHUEIN 19:00: JAHAANARA

* Schedule is subject to change

Makers of the movie are yet to officially confirm whether the film is an official remake of 'The Invention of Lying'. Meanwhile, Arjun has two more projects in the offing. He has a yet-untitled project with director Sukumar apart from a project titled 'Icon' with director Venu Sriram.

MON 12TH AUGUST - FRI 16TH AUGUST TIME

only a single character, played by Parthiepan all by himself. This is one of the very few films to have such a unique feature.

Allu Arjun thanks fans as they welcome him in Kakinada Actor Allu Arjun, who is currently busy shooting for his upcoming Telugu project with filmmaker Trivikram, was welcomed by a sea of fans in Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh, where he will be shooting for the next few weeks. When he reached Kakinada last week, fans converged in hordes to welcome the star. A video of him waving from his car to thousands of fans went viral on social media. He thanked his fans on Instagram, and wrote, "Thank you Kakinada for the hearty Welcome. I thank all my fans for their love. Gratitude." The movie, which was launched on the occasion of Ugadi on April 6, marks the third time reunion of Trivikram and Arjun after 'Julayi' and S/O Sathyamurthy. If the industry grapevine is anything to go by, the project is believed to be titled 'Naana Nenu'. Arjun's mother is believed to act in the family drama. There are other reports that claim the film is reportedly based on Hollywood movie 'The Invention of Lying'. Written and directed by the team of Ricky Gervais and Matthew Robinson, the movie revolved around the first human with the ability to lie in a world where people could only speak the truth.

SATURDAY AUG 10, 2019 01:33 FILM: SHOR IN THE CITY 05:00 FILM: 18.11...A CODE OF SECRECY 07:28 FILM: RAM BALRAM 10:59 FILM: NAZAR KE SAMNE 13:44 FILM: SHAURYA 16:41 FILM: BAADSHAH 20:15 FILM: HOLIDAY SUNDAY AUG 11, 2019 23:25 FILM: J*** 2 01:37 FILM: ISHQ CLICK 05:00 FILM: DAM999 07:12 FILM: GURUDEV 10:26 FILM: KEEMAT 13:53 FILM: PHIR HERA PHERI 17:03 FILM: COMPANY 20:02 FILM: PYAAR KA PUNCHNAMA MONDAY AUG 12, 2019 23:01 FILM: RAGINI MMS 00:43 FILM: ZEHER-A LOVE STORY 05:00 FILM: HUFF! IT'S TOO MUCH 07:00 FILM: ANOKHI ADA 10:00 FILM: KASOOR 13:18 FILM: SAMAY - WHEN TIME STRIKES 16:03 FILM: HOLIDAY 19:16 FILM: KALYUG 21:27 FILM: PYAAR KA PUNCHNAMA TUESDAY AUG 13, 2019 00:30 FILM: DUS TOLA

FILM: GOOD BUDDY GADBADI FILM: SWEEKAR KIYA MAINE FILM: KRANTIVEER FILM: GHATAK FILM: YEH HAI JUDGEMENT HANGED TILL DEATH 19:43 FILM: EK SE BURE DO 22:32 FILM: DHOKHA WEDNESDAY AUG 14, 2019 00:55 FILM: I AM 24 05:00 FILM: THE PERFECT GIRL 07:00 FILM: AAJ KA RAAVAN 09:40 FILM: DHADKAN 12:49 FILM: AWARAPAN 15:20 FILM: SANAM TERI KASAM 18:26 LIFESTYLE : STAR STOP 19:01 FILM: FITOOR 21:46 FILM: YEH ZINDAGI KA SAFAR THURSDAY AUG 15, 2019 00:39 FILM: TADIPAAR 05:00 FILM: BEZUBAAN ISHQ 07:33 FILM: 15TH AUGUST 10:27 FILM: 16 DECEMBER 13:41 FILM: LAKSHYA 17:26 FILM: SATYAMEVA JAYATE 20:13 FILM: DRISHYAM FRIDAY AUG 16, 2019 00:24 FILM: KAUN 05:00 FILM: TITOO MBA 07:09 FILM: JOHNY I LOVE YOU 10:02 FILM: YEH HAI MUMBAI MERI JAAN 12:50 FILM: DEEWANE HUYE PAGAL 16:01 FILM: THAKSHAK 19:40 FILM: COMPANY 22:41 FILM: PHIR HERA PHERI

MON 5TH - FRI 9TH AUG 2019 19:30: CHOTI SARRDAARNI 20:00: SHAKTI ASTITVA KE EHSAAS KI 20:30: RAM SIYA KE LUV KUSH 21:30: BEPANAH PYAARR 22:00: BAHU BEGUM 22:30: VISH

18:00: RADHA PREM KI DEEWANI 18:30: RISING STAR (SEASON 3) 20:30: INDIA'S GOT TALENT (SEASON 8)

21:30: JAGTE RAHO

SUN 4TH AUG 2019

18:00: RADHA PREM KI DEEWANI 18:30: RISING STAR (SEASON 3) 20:30: INDIA'S GOT TALENT (SEASON 8)

21:30: JAGTE RAHO

SAT 10TH AUG 2019 19:30: DESI BEAT RESET 20:00: BFFS WITH VOGUE (SEASON 3) 21:00: DANCE DEEWANE SEASON 2 22:30: KAWACH MAHASHIVRATRI SUN 11TH AUG 2019 19:30: DESI BEAT 20:00: BFFS WITH VOGUE (SEASON 3) 21:00: DANCE DEEWANE - SEASON 2 22:30: KAWACH MAHASHIVRATRI


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Mahant Swami in Gandhinagar

BAPS chief Mahant Swami is in Gandhinagar. While swamiji addressed a large number of devotees visiting him every day to seek his blessings, various days were celebrated in his divine presence. Earlier in Ataladara, Children's Day was celebrated under the auspices of Mahant Swami on July 30. Children presented the 'Sahajanand Namavali' and also displayed their disciplined lifestyle through dance and dialogue. On 31 July, 'Annakoot Din' was celebrated where 75 delicacies were served to the idols in all the three sections of the temple. Mahant Swami arrived Gandhinagar on August 1. On 3rd and 4th, Sameep Darshan was organised. Addressing the morning assembly, Mahant Swami said, 'Moving beyond illusion can yield greater rewards'. On 5th ,Yuva Din was celebrated under Mahant Swami's patronage. Children's Day was celebrated on August 6. Mahant Swami will leave for Africa on August 8.

Holidaying is stressful and takes days to get back to normal It takes at least three days to ‘get back to normal’ after a holiday, a study has found. Researchers found those who take a week off to relax take around 72 hours to get back into the swings of things. That time increases to four days for a two-week break. The study also found it takes two nights for our sleeping pattern to get back to normal after all the lieins. The study of 2,000 adults who holiday abroad found six in 10 believe getting used to the morning routine is the hardest part of

re-joining everyday life after a trip away. A third believe it’s too difficult to get used to the UK’s changeable weather after enjoying sunnier climates abroad. Four in 10 also admitted feeling anxious about going back to work after a holiday, with a quarter taking extra days of annual leave to ease themselves back into life. More than half of holidaymakers also say they ‘completely dread’ coming back from holiday, as it means they’ll have to catch up on household chores and laundry.

l VHP Satsang: Date: 11 August, Sunday Time: 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm Venue: VHP Ilford Hindu Center 43, Cleveland Road Essex IG1 1EE The organization also conducts Hindi, Gujarati, Sanskrit and Hinduism classes on every Saturday from 10:30 am to 3:30 pm Contact: 020 8553 5471 l Star Plus and Perfect Harmony Productions: Live In Concert 'Nayab Lamhe' by Ghazal maestro Pankaj Udhas Date: 17 August, Saturday Venue: Eventim Apollo, 45, Queen Caroline Street, Hammersmith, London W6 9QH. Contact: VideoRoma 020 8907 0116 l Bhavan’s Summer School Finale - 1: Date: 10 August Time: 4:00 pm Summer School Finale - 2 Date: 11 August Time: 4:00 pm Venue: The Bhavans – Bharatiya Vidhya Bhavan 4A, Castletown Road, West Kensington, London W14 9HE Contact: 020 7381 3086 l Up at The O2: Ever wondered what London looks like from 53 metres above North Greenwich? No? Bet you’re wondering now! You can find out with a ticket for Up at The O2, which is the ultimate AAA pass and gains you access to the roof. From there you’ll be able see across the capital, spotting famous sites like the Olympic Park, Thames Barrier, The Shard and Canary Wharf. Up at The

Pinner Sketch Club's annual exhibition to feature over 200 pieces of art Pinner Sketch Club’s annual summer exhibition, will be held in the Pinner Parish Church Hall, Church Lane, from Saturday, August 10, to Saturday, August 24th. At the same time, paintings are on display in a number of local shop windows. With over 70 artists contributing, the work to be seen is very wide-ranging and amounts to more than 200 paintings, drawings and pieces of sculpture and ceramics. All work is for sale and entry is free. Included in the exhibition is figurative work by Humay Jairazbhoy, powerful imagery by Kalpna Saksena and skilful ink and pen drawing with water-

Poems On Man - by Rabindranath Tagore Love adorns itself; it seeks to prove inward joy by outward beauty. Love does not claim possession, but gives freedom. Love is an endless mystery, for it has nothing else to explain it.

colour wash by Helena Stride. Antonella Sands has made a homage to Frida Khalo and Fran Ross uses strong colours in a semi graphic style. For more information visit www.pinnersketchclub.co.uk

Love's gift cannot be given, it waits to be accepted. AJIT NINAN FOR TOI

Indian dance grabs audience at annual dance show Sarjan Nartan Academy presented and performed a cultural Indian dance for an annual dance show by students. The traditional Nrutyotsav Indian classical dance was performed to guests at an event hosted at Hatch End High School’s Great Hall. Students from the Sarjan Nartan Academy, Kenton, Harrow, were able to show case their skills at the second annual students dance shows event. Special guests attended the event, including former Lewisham councillor Duwayne Brooks OBE and celebrity hair stylist Dimps Sanghai and Jasu Vekaria MBE.

A charming hand-written message was left in the ‘House of Commons Book of Tribute’ by Nic Careem, organiser of the Nelson Mandela Book Charity, Jasu Vekaria MBE and Suryakanth Jadva.

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What’s on

O2 is suitable for ages 9+ and at least 1.2 metres tall; and accessible tours for those with disabilities, including wheelchair-users, are also available. Don’t forget socks! Address: The O2, Peninsula Square, London, SE10 0DX Opening Hours: Daily from 10am Transport: Tube North Greenwich Price: From £26 For more information please visit https://tickets.aegeurope.com/upattheo2/climbs.html l Blow something up at The Science Museum’s Wonderlab: Don’t believe the haters, science is awesome. Look at Dr Frankenstein, Bunsen Honeydew and that bloke in ‘Despicable Me’. The Science Museum’s Wonderlab is the perfect place to get hands-on and disrespectful with the forces of nature. Get involved with explosive demonstrations, test friction on their indoor slides and watch a lighting bolt strike from a giant Tesla coil. They’ll call you insane, but one day you’ll rule the world. Ages six-plus. From £6. Address: Exhibition Road, SW7 2DD Opening Hours: Daily 10am - 6pm (last admission 5.15pm) Transport: Tube South Kensington For more information please visit https://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/see-and-do/wonderlab-equinor-gallery l National History Museum’s Family Yoga Classes under the Moon: Join NHM under Luke Jerram's magnificent installation of the Moon for a special yoga experience that kids won't forget. The family yoga classes hosted in collaboration with East of Eden - are a perfect

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way for children and adults to explore gentle yoga through stories, easy breathing and meditation. Afterwards you will also enjoy exclusive access to part of the Museum before the summer crowds enter. This event is for visitors with children aged 5-11. Adults must purchase tickets and accompany children in the class. Please bring your own yoga mat for this event. Address: Cromwell Road, SW7 5BD Dates: 15th and 29th August - 08.45 to 09.30 Price: Public: £14 Members: £12.60 l National History Museum’s LEGO® Life Forms: This summer, budding space scientists can explore what life might look like on different planets and create a Mars rover in two LEGO® building events. Explore distant worlds and imagine life throughout the galaxy with LEGO® Life Forms, a fun, playful activity for the whole family. Unleash your imagination, build a LEGO life form and discover how creatures are adapted to different environments: Frozen oceans - Jupiter's moon Europa Deserts - Proxima Centauri b exoplanet Rocky mountains - TRAPPIST-1e exoplanet Volcanoes - Jupiter's moon Io Address: Cromwell Road, SW7 5BD Event location: Waterhouse Gallery Event times: Daily, 11.00-16.00, drop-in Tickets: Free, no ticket required Suitable for ages 7+


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India sweep T20I series against West Indies India made a clean sweep in the T20I series against West Indies by winning the third and final match by 7 wickets. Chasing 147, India completed the run-chase with five balls to spare. Rishab Pant scored 65 while Virat Kohli played a sublime 59 run-knock. Earlier, pacer Deepak Chahar starred with the ball claiming three wickets for four runs. In the second T20, Rohit Sharma’s 67 off 51 balls and Krunal Pandya’s all-round show powered India to a 22run win over West Indies in the rain-affected match. Batting first, India scored 167 for five and then had West Indies reeling at 98 for four in the 16th over when lightning and thundershowers struck. The Duckworth-Lewis par score at that point was 120, leaving India winner by 22 runs. Rohit top-scored with 67 before Krunal (20 off 13 balls) and Ravindra Jadeja propped up the innings, smashing 20 runs in the final over bowled by Keemo

Paul. Krunal hit the first two balls of the 20th over for sixes before Jadeja smashed another. During the course of his innings, Rohit became T20I’s most prolific sixhitter, going past Chris Gayle’s record of 105. He struck six fours and three sixes in this match. India was off to a quick start, crossing 50 in the seventh over with Rohit doing the bulk of the scoring. The India vice-captain found the gaps with ease, clipping Paul off his pads for a six over deep midwicket. The highest scorer in the World Cup then swept him for a four as the Indians upped the tempo. Paul gave West Indies the breakthrough when he bowled Shikhar Dhawan. India was 67 for one in the eighth over at that stage. Two Rishabh Pant and Virat Kohli Sunil Narine and brought quiet overs followed as up his 17th T20 half-century India skipper Virat Kohli with a single to long-off. joined Rohit. The latter Kohli, at the other end, broke the shackles with a six hit a six off left-arm spinner over deep midwicket off

Khary Pierre to get going. Rohit then smashed Carlos Brathwaite for a six and four as India’s 100 came up in the 13th over. It took a fine

catch from Shimron Hetmyer to bring an end to Rohit’s stay. The Indian opener departed in the 14th over. Rishabh Pant (5) perished quickly, topedging Thomas into the hands of Kieron Pollard at third man. Sheldon Cottrell then took the prize scalp of Kohli, sending the middle-stump cartwheeling with a perfectly-executed yorker and performing his trademark salute. In reply, West Indies was off to a disastrous start with both openers Evin Lewis and Sunil Narine back in the hut with just eight on the board in the third over. Rovman Powell and Nicholas Pooran lifted the team with a 76run stand for the third wicket before Krunal again got into the act, removing both batsmen in the space

of three balls in the 14th over. Just as things were getting tougher for the hosts came the showers followed by lightning. India win by four wickets in first T20 India held their nerve to beat West Indies by four wickets in the first T20I encounter. Rohit Sharma was the top scorer with 24 while Virat Kohli scored 20. Sheldon Cottrell, Sunil Narine and Keemo Paul all took two wickets each. Earlier, Navdeep Saini had a brilliant start to his international career as he took three wickets to restrict West Indies to 95/9. Bhuvneshwar Kumar struck twice while Khaleel Ahmed, Krunal Pandya, Washinton Sundar and Ravindra Jadeja took one wicket each as India dominated proceedings in Lauderhill. Kieron Pollard was the top scorer for West Indies with 49. This was the third time in T20Is where six different bowlers took wickets in the same match for India.

Michael Owen launches grassroots Australia beat England in first test football project in Leicester The legendary England footballer Michael Owen and Sany Supra launched IPLSOCCER, a new initiative in Leicester which will seek to introduce diverse, local youngsters to competitive football. The launching was held at the Leicester Bharat Football Club. IPLSOCCER is a competitive 7-a-side indoor football competition, with selected city-based teams headed by celebrity owners. IPLSOCCER will be UK's first nationwide Asian football tournament, which will be held annually, and matches will be held at an indoor arena. The goal is to encourage British Asians into professional football, although teams will hold trails in cities which will be open to 16-32 year- old players. The best 16 players from each city will be picked for their squad to play for their home city in the tournament. From this, players can be scouted into professional football contracts with clubs in the UK and abroad. Teams will be picked from Birmingham, Derby, Leicester and London. The celebrity team owners and their teams, trial dates and full tournament dates will be announced Keith Vaz MP, Michael Owen and Sany Supra at the launch from September, and the tournament will of IPLSOCCER at Leicester Bharat F.C. kick off in June 2020. heart of the community and to announce Michael Owen, ambassador of this new football project. This will be such a IPLSOCCER, said: "Sport is one of the few momentous event. I am sure he will be given institutions that can break down barriers a hero’s welcome by local people, and the and stereotypes but despite the diversity in project has our full support.” the current England squad, no footballer of Sany Supra, founder & CEO of South Asian origin has won a senior England IPLSOCCER, said: "In this current climate cap in over 146 years and British South where football is fanatically followed Asians continue to be under-represented in worldwide, especially the Premier League, professional football. Improving those we still find ourselves looking for some statistics and providing fully inclusive strong British Asian representation. opportunities for all are at the core of the IPLSOCCER is the opportunity for all to IPLSOCCER Programme." come and join and showcase their talents Leicester East MP Keith Vaz said: "We through this annual televised event. We all are thrilled that one of England’s greatest want to see the next Asian Michael Owen, football stars has chosen to promote and Ronaldo and David Beckham breakthrough. discover fresh new talent by coming into the Let this be the beginning of that journey.”

Australia beat England by 251 runs to win the first Ashes Test at Edgbaston. England, set an imposing target of 398 to win, collapsed to 97-7 in the post-lunch session on the fifth and final day before being bowled out for 146. Off-spinner Nathan Lyon took 6-49 and fast bowler Pat Cummins 4-32 as Australia enjoyed their first win in all formats at Edgbaston since 2001 - the last time they won an Ashes series in England. Defeat for the home side ended their run of 11 successive international wins at their Birmingham 'fortress'. The match was a personal triumph for Australia's Steve Smith, who in his first Test since a 12-month ban for his role in a balltampering scandal, scored 144 and 142. In the process the star batsman became just the fifth Australian to score two hundreds in an Ashes Test. His first-innings century helped guide Ashes-holders Australia to 284 after they had

collapsed to 122-8. England replied with 374, their first-innings lead of 90 built on a maiden Test century from left-handed opener Rory Burns, who made 133, and fifties from captain Joe Root and vice-captain Ben Stokes. Former Australia captain Smith's second-innings century and a maiden Ashes hundred from Matthew Wade allowed visiting captain Tim Paine to declare on 4877. Australia capitalised on the absence of James Anderson, England's all-time leading Test wicket-taker, who only sent down four first-innings overs before breaking down with a calf problem that meant he did not bowl again in the match. The match was the first of the International Cricket Council's new World Test Championship, with Australia's win giving them 24 points. The five-match series continues with the second Test at Lord's starting on August 14.

TN girl wins gold medal at world deaf youth badminton championship Tamil Nadu girl Jerlin Anika won the gold medal in the World Deaf Youth Badminton Championship in Taipei on July 17-22. Anika won four medals in the tournament, one bronze, two silver and a gold. She is just 15 years old and a student of class 10 in a government school in Madurai. Her father, Jeya Ratchagan, said that his daughter's performance is a matter of pride for the country and the state of Tamil Nadu. He said Anika started learning badminton from the age of eight. According to Anika's mother, Leema, the government helped her a lot, and she believes Anika has a lot of potential. She said, "I felt very happy when she got the gold medal. It is not only for her but for the country and Tamil Nadu. I cried when I saw India's flag being unfurled at the medals ceremony. Now, I urge the government to come forward and help this young

Jerlin Anika

sportsperson." She has been winning medals internationally for some time now. She made the country proud last year in Malaysia too by winning two silver medals and a bronze in the 5th Asia pacific deaf badminton championship. We are proud of you Anika, more power to you and hope you shine in the field you have chosen.

Profile for Asian Business Publications Ltd

AV 10th August 2019  

Asian Voice weekly newspaper (Issue 15 Vol 48)

AV 10th August 2019  

Asian Voice weekly newspaper (Issue 15 Vol 48)

Profile for abpl