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First & Foremost Asian Weekly in Europe


14th April to 20th April 2018


Let noble thoughts come to us from every side 80p

CWG: Indians win 21 medals

Rupanjana Dutta

Following two weeks of Commonwealth sport and the handing of the baton to the next host of the Commonwealth Games, Birmingham, the UK will host the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London and Windsor. After 2009 this is the first time an Indian Prime Minister will be participating in CHOGM. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be in London from 18-20 April 2018. He was meant to be accompanied by Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, but he has currently dropped out due to health related issues. Events as they will happen From Monday 16 April to Friday 20 April this biennial event will bring together Heads of Government, Foreign Ministers and thousands of delegates from across our 53 Commonwealth nations. With the theme of ‘Towards a Common Future’, the summit will focus on addressing common challenges across the Commonwealth and work to deliver a more prosperous, secure, sustainable and fairer future for the Commonwealth’s 2.4 billion citizens. Ahead of the formal Heads of Government Meeting on Thursday and Friday, the week will begin with three days of forums on Business, Women, People and Youth (Monday 16 to Wednesday 18 April). The Youth, Women’s and People’s Forum will take place at The Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre in Westminster while the Business Forum will be held at Guildhall in the City of London. The forums offer a unique platform for the people of the Commonwealth to come together to address shared challenges and help frame the discussions of leaders. Up to 2,000 representatives from business, civil society, youth-led organisations and government will meet to discuss and raise the issues of most importance to our citizens. Continued on page 8

India’s overall medal tally at the 2018 Commonwealth Games has increased to 21 with ace pistol shooter Heena Sidhu winning gold in the women’s 25m pistol

Protests amid Modi's arrival As Modi gears up to attend the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) 2018, it is said that self-professed leaders of the Sikh community and Kashmiri separatists in Britain will come together to protest against the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi's decision to attend the Summit in London and Windsor. As per Government Whips' Office, House of Lords website, Member of Parliament Lord Nazir Ahmed is also planning to raise a question on Kashmir and Punjab in the House of Lords on 16th April. The website mentions, "Lord Ahmed to ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to encourage the government of India to withdraw its formal reservations against the right of self determination so that the conflicts in Indian-controlled Kashmir, Punjab and other territories in the north east of the

Indian sub-continent can move towards a peaceful resolution in a democratic manner, underpinned by international law." However, there will be many people from various Indian communities, led by the Friends of India Society International (FISI), who will be at the scene to show solidarity and support towards PM Modi. Sardar Patel Memorial Society UK, Enfield Saheli, All Ladies League (ALL) UK, plus many more organisations will be involved. The Chief Executive at Enfield Saheli and Chairperson of All Ladies League, Krishna Pujara shared with Asian Voice, “We are all going there to welcome the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi. We cannot stop anyone from protesting – it is a democracy. We will be welcoming Modi, as well as show how culturally diverse Indian culture is and yet we stand in unity.”

(Precision/Rapid) finals and para-powerlifter Sachin Chaudhary claiming bronze in the men’s heavyweight final on Tuesday (day 6). Continued on page 31

Salman out on bail, thanks fans for support

Bollywood Superstar Salman Khan walked out of Jodhpur Central Jail after the court granted him bail in the 1998 black buck poaching case. He has been asked to furnish two bonds of Rs 25,000 each. His return was celebrated with a lot of fervour all

across the nation as 'Bhai' fans rejoiced his temporary freedom. Witness to the unparalleled fandom, Salman choked back tears as he thanked his fans and supporters for standing by him during the tough time. Continued on page 26


Asian Voice | 14th April 2018





Keith Vaz, MP

Jocelyn Latif Until recently, Jocelyn was a Biology teacher with a passion for curry. No longer teaching she has followed her passion and started her small business ‘Karma Curry’, making fresh, authentic easy to use curry sauces by adapting her wonderful mother-in-law’s recipes. Jocelyn has identified a gap in the market where lots of sauces and curry-making kits are available, but no one is making a fresh sauce that is quick and easy to use with authenticity. Her sauces are available at Provenance Village Butcher in Notting Hill, West Hampstead and soon Chelsea. In addition, Jocelyn enjoys travelling, yoga and spending time with family and friends. She hopes that ‘Karma Curry’ continues to grow and be successful so that a percentage of the profits can go to support charities helped by the British Asian Trust. 1 Which place, or city or country do you most feel at home in? Many places spring to mind but if forced to choose, Bamburgh in Northumberland and India. 2 What are your proudest achievements? My two daughters. 3 What inspires you? I have been inspired by many things over the years - pupils I have taught, gifted teachers, family and friends; in particular a very dear friend, Benjamin Angel, who despite all the obstacles placed in front of him achieved so much in such a short period of time. No longer with us, he still inspires me to this day to keep

trying. Also my father’s work ethic and my dear father- in-law who arrived in the UK from India with very little and again achieved so much. 4 What has been biggest obstacle in your career? I thoroughly enjoyed my teaching career becoming Head of Science in a top London Independent Girls’ day school; but the biggest obstacle for me, and like many women, was work life balance when I had children. 5 Who has been the biggest influence on your career to date? My new career is ‘Karma Curry’ so that has to be my amazing mother-in-law.

6 What is the best aspect about your current role? Being able to work for myself and the flexibility that brings with a young family. 7 And the worst? Tasting curries everyday – delicious, but hard on the waistline! 8 What are your long term goals? I would like the business to grow without compromising any of the principles of the brand. ‘Good intent and good deed contribute to good karma and future happiness’ so the name ‘Karma Curry’ came about because, as a working mother, I wanted to ensure that the food that I gave my children was nutritious and of the highest quality but was also quick and easy to prepare. It is also important to me to be associated with brands that care about the environment, animal welfare and how our food is produced, packaged and delivered. Hence my association with ‘Provenance Village Butcher’, locally sourced produce, the use of recyclable materials and delivering whilst on the school run keeping my carbon footprint low. 9 If you were Prime Minister, what one aspect would you change?

Although it is improving, I would still like to see more women in parliament, better childcare provision and work life balance for young families. 10 If you were marooned on a desert island, which historical figure would you like to spend your time with and why. Can I have two? I am still passionate about my subject, Biology, so Charles Darwin as I would learn so much from him and also the late Mo Mowlam MP – wonderfully charismatic, clever, funny and strong – I think we’d have fun!

The epidemic of alcoholism within the British Punjabi community Reshma Trilochun The unspoken alcohol problem within the British Punjabi community has been depicted in a recent BBC documentary. Although social drinking is somewhat encouraged at weddings and other festivities, people tend to keep quiet when it comes to speaking about alcoholism due to the stigma, and the fear of being ostracised. Drinking alcohol, you could say, has become glamorised within certain sects of society and while drinking in moderation to have fun may not be of any harm, making this a usual habit and increasing the intake day-by-day can lead to it becoming a dire problem, affecting family life, relationships, and your professional life, while having negative effects on your health and wellbeing. Currently, there are around 430,000 Sikhs in the UK who make up a large proportion of the British Punjabi population. According to a survey commis-

sioned by the BBC, despite the consumption of alcohol being forbidden in Sikhism, 61% of British Sikhs who were surveyed admitted to drinking alcohol, while 27% of British Sikhs reported having someone with an alcohol problem in their family.

Stigma and keeping hush The fear of being judged may result in someone refraining from seeking help from religious organisations or community groups. Rav Sekhon, a British Punjabi psychotherapist who works with ethnic minority communities said, "There is really strong pride and honour for the family name. They don't want anyone to perceive them as having something wrong with them or any form of weakness." Dr Gurprit Pannu has conducted research on alcoholism in the Punjabi community and says other medical professionals must wake up to the scale of the problem. He said, “There are a number of people in the community who are still in denial. I think

this is an ongoing process of trying to open up the fact that this is happening within the community. What’s happening, particularly with the Punjabi community, especially as they seem to be biologically susceptible to alcohol damage, is that there are more deaths overall related to alcohol use. This is something that is not widely known. What sits underneath that are all the social problems that also occur. What we know is that alcohol is related to domestic violence; it’s related to difficulties that children experience, unemployment and financial problems, violent crimes and road traffic accidents, and so forth. There are all these hidden social illnesses that are also present.” Jennifer Shergill, an alcohol practitioner at The Shanti Project, works with Sikh men and women to manage and overcome addiction. She points to the combination of British binge drinking and the culture of drinking in Punjab, which together create a perfect storm for some of the people accessing support ser-

vices. She also states that one of the obstacles stopping someone from seeking help is the fear of someone finding out. She said, “There is stigma associated with chronic alcohol misuse and they don't want their reputation to be tainted... if there is a dependent drinker in the family what might people think of our family?"

Support from the community Rami Ranger, the founder and chairman of Sun Mark Ltd shared his opinion about alcohol abuse within the Punjabi community. He said, “I am most saddened to see the BBC report on the

increasing alcohol abuse within the Punjabi community in Britain. I am also grateful to the BBC for highlighting this real and endemic problem and bringing it to attention of the community. Something must be done quickly as alcohol abuse wrecks lives. A productive life can be destroyed within a short period of time with dire consequence for the entire family. I will urge Gurdwaras and Mandirs to run seminars with the help of experts to highlight the consequence of alcohol addiction and its affect. The specialist organisation should provide counselling where needed as these people genuinely need help and support. This problem can only be solved with a concerted effort by the Punjabi community along with the specialists in this field. I am confident, that the community will respond and meet with this challenge of eradicating alcohol abuse for the betterment of all.”

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Diplomatic chessboard challenges intellect, vision Knee jerk responses to developments on the international chessboard are not what a good doctor would advise. Around a month and more ago, a retired Indian diplomat penned a column worthy of Rip van Winkle, the man who awoke from his sleep to discover that had he had slept through a century and that the surrounds once familiar to him had changed beyond recognition. Similarly, our retired diplomat, awakening to unfamiliar reality, asked that the new world around him be reconstructed to fit the halcyon dream of a past age, now consigned to memory and dusty, discarded shelves in a disused attic. His preposterous suggestion was that India should ignore the contemporary great powers and opt for a leadership role of non-aligned states. Who might these be, one may well ask? The faded picture accompanying his piece provided his answer: a jocular Jawaharlal Nehru in the middle with Abdel Gamel Nasser to his right and Josip Broz Tito on his left, each brimming optimism of the sunshine days when life appeared worth living. The hallucinatory embrace of history in the making has long dissolved into nightmare for Egypt and for the once buoyant Yugoslavia. Egypt today is a crippled tree: military rule, the dispossessed Muslim Brotherhood, jihadi terrorism, stagnant economy and sullen population, reflecting a state of nullity devoid of purpose. Yugoslavia has disappeared from the map, destroyed by NATO bombing and ethnic discords. The once heroic Tito, darling of Western establishments, was consigned to the bin as a tyrannical communist. Tito, like Gorbachev after him, consumed by the flattery and attention of the great and good in Washington, London, Paris and Berlin, failed to read the signs. Strutting on the stage, they were duly cast into predestined oblivion when their roles were done. Our retired diplomat, alas, is addicted to the nostrums of Ptolomy in the age of Copernicus. Fundamental truths cannot be discarded on a whim. Nor can ground realities. Some people of diminishing importance are given to pontificating on the four poles of global power, namely the United States, the Russian Federation, China and the European Union. Here, also, physics and mathematics are seriously flawed. The crisis between the West and Russia has less to do with the poisoning of a former Russian spy working for Britain and that of his daughter and is more a tale of geopolitical rivalry. With the credibility of British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson increasingly tarnished,

with the European Union exposed as an American stalking horse, we see unfolding before us a potential conflict with murderous consequences. This is no new cold war in likeness to its previous incarnation in which red lines were drawn and respected, but combustible rules of engagement prefiguring Armageddon. President Trump’s mood swings and the craven loyalty of America’s European satraps is a cause for alarm. The American Empire’s acquisitive instincts, first revealed in the Monroe Doctrine of the early 1820s, and continuing through the westward expansion to the Pacific Ocean involved the genocide of the indigenous communities of the North American plain and entrenched black slavery the legacy starkly self-evident in the country’s oppressive inner city ghettos and overstocked prisons. ‘The pursuit of happiness’ exalted in the Constitution is reserved for the wealthy and privileged. The accumulated riches in the early post-war years have been squandered in war without end. South East Asia was ravaged, the Korean Peninsula made desolate, the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki subjected to the world’s only nuclear assault, the Greater Middle East, from Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Libya destroyed, with a Biblical exodus across the Mediterranean a living witness to unending horror and a society back home wracked by gun violence, low inner city education, social deprivation and much else. The search for an elusive security is manic, as is the detection of national enemies. Such is the first of the multiple realities that foreign policy makers must ponder. India is no exception to the rule. Located in a fraught neighbourhood, requires a calibrated response to choices of policies with promising dividends. Harsh Pant, the London-based academic, went viral at what he perceived to be India’s ‘supine’ Chinapolicy. India stands by its position on Doklan, has not given way to Chinese claims to Arunachal Pradesh, or signed up to membership of China’s One Belt One Road club. Nor has India ceased to strengthen its military presence on its northern border, or opt for an exotic Hare Krishna pacifism. Quite the opposite. India designed, manufactured and recently tested its very own seeker technology to service the fearsome supersonic BrahMos cruise missile, its range extended from 290km to 400km and soon to be increased to 600km. In a topsyturvy world, India has decided to engage with China. It is the sensible thing to do. Mindless truculence is posturing, firing a blank and captivated by the sound.

Whither Indo-Nepal relations?

Indo-Nepal relations, determined geography, culture and shared history have been close and are surely destined to remain so going forward into the 21st and beyond. Tranquility has given way occasionally to bursts of turbulence, followed by restored peace. The visit to India by the new Prime Minister of Nepal, Khadga Prasad Sharma Oily, has been awaited with interest on both sides of the border. During his first tenure in office, Nepal’s relations with India were stressful. Prime Minister Oily accused India of interfering in Nepal’s domestic politics through its perceived support for the Nepali Madhesi agitation for greater recognition of their place in the country during nationwide consultations on a new democratic constitution to replace centuries-old monarchical rule. Situated on the Nepali plains adjacent to the Indian border, the Madhesi leadership made their point by blockading the roads and highways from India to the capital Kathmandu and into the Nepali interior. So much for the troubled past, which Prime Minister Sharma Oily hoped to put behind him. That period was done and dusted. The Madhesis had joined the mainstream, a free and democratic nation election had voted him to power. His prime concern now, like that of his Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, was to tackle corruption,

promote development and prosperity. That was the best way forward to a workable future. Asked about the slow progress of Indian projects in Nepal, he accepted that this a problem which would be addressing in his discussions with Prime Minister Modi. Nepal was a sovereign country and was watchful on any possible dilution of its sovereignty. Nepal had an evenhanded approach to ties with India and China, each crafted with an eye to the national interest. Nobody would fault Prime Minister Oily making the priority of Nepal’s well-being the cornerstone of his foreign policy. Why ever not? India obeys similar compulsions, as do most countries, if not in deeds, certainly in words. If there was a resemblance to discordance, it was Mr Oily’s reference to Pakistan’s view that the South Asian grouping known by the acronym SAARC should be reactivated. Under normal circumstances, yes, but conditions are far from normal. Jihadi attacks on Mumbai, India’s financial capital, have resulted in horrendous losses of life and property. Such attacks have occurred elsewhere in India. The sine qua non of a normalized Indo-Pakistan relationship is the cessation of Pakistani support of terror groups as an instrument of its foreign policy. It is not too much to ask.

No citizen is above the law

The rule of law entails obedience to the law. That was where the Bollywood megastar Salman Khan transgressed. He was accused of poaching two black bucks designated as an endangered species. The deed was committed on the night of October 12, 1998, when he, fellow actors and a crew were shooting for a film. They were acquitted for lack of evidence. Mr Khan was deemed guilty as charged and sentenced to five years in jail, and was led to the Jodhpur Central jail to serve his sentence.

Chief Judicial Magistrate Dev Kumar Khatri read out his 201-page judgment upholding the law and punishing the transgressor, however eminent he might be. The Bishnoi community, wedded to the sacredness of nature and its creatures great and small fought for justice for 19 years. Justice was eventually done and seen to be done, much to satisfaction of the humble Bishnois. The wheels of justice grind slow, they grind exceeding well. Mr Khan was released on bail, pending an appeal.

Asian Voice | 14th April 2018


There is only one happiness in this life, to love and be loved. - George Sand

Alpesh Patel

Why India Should Have Stood By UK on Chemical Use When a British Pakistani MP visits Pakistan, you can put money on it that they will return to the UK Parliament and ask a question about Kashmir. They have no regard at all for UK foreign policy – knowing full well what the Foreign Office Minister will say, “the UK believes this is not an issue for the UK Government”. So why does the MP ask it? For consumption in Pakistan. Not for UK votes. What is going on? The UK is a friend of India’s. Separately, the Russian media have been pleased to see that after the chemical attacks in the UK, that India did not expel any diplomats. That it did not stand by the UK. As a British Indian, my first loyalty is to Britain. Were I a British Pakistani MP, that may not be so. But I am not. I am a British Indian. Chemical weapons being used in Syria continue to sadden. I am reminded of a recent trip to Turkey… “We’ll show them someday soon, the evidence of truth we are all over the world and to themselves, until light to them, that the Qur’aan is the truth. It not enough that thy Lord is witness over all things. “(Surah Fushshilat: 53). Dear Prime Minister of Turkey, I prayed to a Hindu God today in a Mosque – the Blue Mosque in Istanbul. I prayed for the children of Syria, your neighbour, being murdered and slaughtered and exterminated and eradicated by your Muslim brother Assad. Prove me seditious for praying to another God on behalf of the children of your faith, because their God has deserted them. I prayed, that your God, who my faith teaches me is my God too, listens to me in your Mosque, because He does not listen to His own children in their mosques – because surely as they are being murdered their parents pray for salvation – and none comes. I prayed to Shiv, the destroyer, in your Mosque, that He may become death and the destroyer of worlds…the world of Assad. (Forgive my impertinence, I confess, my God also fails to listen to the cries of His children in His mandirs.) I prayed that your blood boils with anger and the wrath of the Lord flow through your veins and you strike down with a mighty vengeance those who harm your children. What relevance that I am Indian? More Muslims reside in these two secular countries, India and Turkey, than any other secular State – so it is that India and Turkey have a responsibility to the world’s Muslims to show them secular liberal democracies will be their defender. It is a duty and opportunity both countries have yet to grasp. China has more Muslims than Syria, yet China failed to act. Russia has more Muslims than Jordan and Libya combined – yet Russia too fails to protect Syrian Muslim children. So it is surely left to India and Turkey. So show us non-believers, ‘the evidence of truth, that you are all over the world and that it is not enough thy Lord is witness over all thing’s – but that you will save the children of a greater God. When Pope Benedict visited this same Mosque he said, ‘May all believers identify themselves with the one God and bear witness to true brotherhood.’ Tonight I bore witness as a believer in God, make me a believer in Islamic brotherhood. Prime Minister – you are your brother’s keeper. A Catholic has told you – a Pope no less, a Hindu commoner has told you – both from inside your own Mosque – when will the brotherhood of Islam tell you? Editor: CB Patel

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Asian Voice | 14th April 2018

Asian constable alleges police force “blocked” his career path The tribunal at Teeside Magistrates' Court heard how a police force with no black officers allegedly barred an Asian constable's promotion aspirations while “incompetent white officers” prospered and forged ahead. Zaheer Ahmed, who is of Pakistani origin, spent 23 years working for North Yorkshire Police. He claimed that white police officers were promoted, some to more senior positions, and hence the only explanation for him not prospering in his career was his race. The tribunal heard that in January 2014, Ahmed applied for a custody sergeant role, however, he was told that he did not suit this role as he did not have enough experience. Ahmed claims that other “less experienced, less qualified, white” peers were assisted in applying for the exact position. In a witness statement, Ahmed stat-

Zaheer Ahmed

ed, “North Yorkshire Police are concerned with appearing as though they care about tackling the issue of lack of diversity, but their actions do not sup-

port this. As of March 31, North Yorkshire Police did not have a single black officer on its force.” Ahmed also stated that in 2016, his application for a promotion was rejected due to concerns with his performance. This, he said, was “a shock and a blow”. “I was getting good feedback from my superiors, was achieving competent and even exceeding expectations in some areas – I could not understand why it was only during the promotion process that I was being flagged as having development needs. I did not receive a full explanation for the reason I was the only officer in North Yorkshire to be blocked. I was hurt by the discriminatory treatment that I had received over the years – the extra restrictions, the lack of opportunity and support. I would be obstructed from progressing any further.” The hearing continues.

Man linked to £1.6m plot to flood Leicester with heroin still on the run after a decade

A man linked to a conspiracy to smuggle heroin worth £1.6 million into Leicestershire remains on the run almost 10 years after police named him as one of the UK’s ‘most wanted’. Police believe Shashi Dhar Sahnan was a key figure in a meticulously planned conspiracy to import 30kg of the class A drug from Turkey to Leicester in the summer of 2007. The seizure was one of the largest made by Leicestershire Police. Mr Sahnan went on the run, possibly to Spain, while two brothers from Leicester were arrested and put on trial for their roles in the conspiracy. The brothers were later jailed for a combined total of 43 years and stripped of assets worth hundreds of thousands of pounds under the Proceeds of Crime Act. Mr Sahnan remained at large and was later named by the National Crime Agency as one of the UK’s ‘most wanted’ and was one of the central targets of an operation to flush out suspects believed to be hiding out in Spain. A Leicestershire Police spokeswoman said: “We can confirm he is still outstanding and we would urge anyone with

information about his whereabouts to contact us.” Leicestershire Police and customs officials intercepted the compressed heroin at a Birmingham freight depot in July 2007. It was concealed in a consignment of chiller units. Officials removed the heroin and allowed the consignment to continue its journey to Leicester – under police surveillance. Police swooped when it was delivered to a business in Midland Street, in the city centre. In December 2009, brothers Babu and Bharat Sarsia, both of New Parks, Leicester, went on trial at Nottingham Crown Court and were convicted of drug importation. Babu Natha Day Sarasia, then aged 44, of Brunel Avenue, was jailed for 25 years, while his brother, Bharat Ram Sarasia, then aged 45 and of Darlington Road, received an 18-year sentence. The brothers’ trial heard that they had previously managed to smuggle in a further nine consignments of the drug – concealed using the same method and thought to be worth around £10 million. Detective Constable Kevin Hames told the Leicester Mercury at the time: “This was a well organised plot to smug-

Shashi Dhar Sahnan

gle large quantities of high-grade heroin into the country and on to the streets of Leicestershire. The chiller units themselves cost between £2,500 and £4,000 each and were imported purely to cover up the drugs operation. They were not sold on or used for anything. The fact they were happy to spend between £40,000 and £80,000 just on hiding the drugs goes to show the size of the operation.”

Teenage Leicester hit-and-run victim's plea to find person who left him with horrific leg injury

Avtar Dass was injured on last Saturday night. The driver left the scene, Leicestershire Police said. Avtar, who is studying at Leicester College, and his family, who live near the scene of the collision, spoke out to urge witnesses to come forward. Detectives are particularly keen to hear from anyone who has CCTV or dashcam footage of the collision and the moments before and after it. Avtar said: “I was in a lot of pain. My leg broke and the bone pushed through the skin. I think I passed out at the scene. When I woke up in hospital I was in a lot of pain. They gave me gas and morphine to take the pain away. Luckily, I did not need an operation.People came to help me and I am very grateful to them and some have made statements to

(Image: Mike Sewell)

A 16-year-old boy who was left lying injured in the road by a hit-and-run driver has urged witnesses to come forward to help police trace the culprit.

take some time. It was a bad fracture and there is a wound where his bone came through the skin. How could someone hit a young boy and leave them lying injured? A lot of people saw what happened but the police want to hear from people who have footage of the inciAvtar recovering at home with mum, Maya dent, before and after. A lot of people have the police about what they saw. The cameras in their cars now and they police have said they need people who might have filmed something that will have footage of what happened and I help the police. I urge them to speak to hope anyone who can help the police the police if they have any information will come forward.” about this. Please come forward and let Avtar’s mum, Maya Bhutia, 40, said: the police know what you know.” “My son is in so much pain. This has A 21-year-old man has been arrested traumatised him and taken away his on suspicion of causing grievous bodily confidence. He has said to me ‘mum, I harm with intent. He has since been could be dead now’. He has been disreleased from custody but remains charged from hospital and is back at under investigation. home with us now, but his recovery will


Police arrest two on suspicion of terror plot

Two men from Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, were arrested in police counterterrorism raids on 3rd April, on suspicion of planning an Islamist attack. The men, aged 52 and 21, were arrested at two houses and were taken to the police station for questioning. The two houses are near the home of Talha Asmal, who was the UK's youngest suicide bomber in 2015, who blew himself up in Iraq, at the age of 17. The ringleader of the 7th July attack in 2005, that killed 52 people in London, lived about two miles away from these two properties. Neighbours were concerned after they heard “loud bangs”; however, officers reassured the public that the noise was due to police gaining access to the properties. Superintendent Marianne Huison, of West Yorkshire police said, “I understand our local communities will have concerns about this morning's police activity, but I want to offer my reassurance that we will continue to serve and protect the public of West Yorkshire. Public safety is our utmost concern.”

Verdict in trial of driver accused of crashing into tree and leaving friend brain damaged

A dangerous driver who crashed into a tree, causing his passenger friend to suffer a life-changing brain injury, is facing jail. Sagen Bhavsar, 24, was speeding on the wrong side of the road with no headlights on when he almost collided headon with a taxi. He Sagen Bhavsar then swerved into a tree on Knighton Grange Road, Oadby, in the early hours of Thursday October 27, 2016. It happened in a Land Rover Discovery that Bhavsar had earlier taken without the permission of the owner, Leicester Crown Court was told. A jury of four women and eight men took one hour and six minutes of deliberations to convict Bhavsar unanimously, of causing serious injury to Manjot Singh Mann, by driving dangerously. Mr Mann, 23, who was trapped and unconscious in the front passenger seat, was freed from the wreckage by the fire and rescue service. Bhavsar denied the allegation, claiming it was an accident and his driving was not to blame because he was forced to swerve to avoid two females who suddenly ran into the road.

Five arrested as immigration officers swoop on Tamworth's Blue Water

A popular curry house in Tamworth is facing a £100,000 fine after five suspected illegal immigrants were arrested during an evening raid - with officials also finding food hygiene issues. Blue Water could be slapped with the eyewatering figure after the five men were arrested by Immigration Enforcement officers on Thursday, 5 April. The intelligence-led visit, which happened at around 6pm, was supported by officers from Tamworth Borough Council’s Licensing team. Immigration officers carried out checks to ensure that staff had the right to live and work in the UK. Five Bangladeshi men aged between 18 and 36 were found to have overstayed their visas. All five were arrested and detained pending removal from the country. Blue Water Restaurant, in Silver Street, was served a civil penalty referral notice warning that a financial penalty of up to £20,000 per illegal worker found will be imposed unless the employer can demonstrate that appropriate right-to-work document checks were carried out, such as seeing a passport or Home Office document confirming permission to work. This is a potential total of up to £100,000.

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Asian Voice | 14th April 2018

Uber driver convicted of raping drunk passenger Uber driver, Muhammad Durrani, 38, who was accused of allegedly raping a drunk passenger on the backseat of his car has been convicted. Southwark Crown Court heard how the driver allegedly attacked the woman in his Toyota after driving her home from a live music club in Clapham, Southwest London. The court heard how Durrani allegedly followed the woman to her front door and lifted her up and carried her to the back of his car and assaulted her. The passenger reported him to Uber for his “unprofessional behaviour”. The incident occurred in the early hours of 24th July 2016. However, following his arrest the next day, Durrani told the police that the sex had been consensual. The woman told the police, “I was obviously very, very drunk, and he was the sober driver who picked me up and took me to the back of his car without my wanting him to... Because I had been drinking I was a bit disoriented,


Love, Hate & Other Filters Reshma Trilochun The debut novel of Samira Ahmed, Love, Hate & Other Filters is about Maya Aziz, a normal teenager in America who dreams of kissing boys and becoming a film maker in New York. Caught between parental expectations, as well as between two guys – one she SHOULD like and one that she DOES like, things take a drastic turn and everything changes because of a suicide bomber, who shares her last name, attacked a city hundreds of miles away from her home. This novel has the ingredients of 50% love, 30% hatred, and 20% prejudice. Samira Ahmed, who was born in Mumbai, India, and up in Illinois,

door. She hugged me with her own free will. I tried to control myself for some time but how far could I have controlled myself? I didn't want to do it because it was not right. She forced me into it. After all, a human being is a human being.” He also claimed that he did not think the woman was drunk when she got into his vehicle and conversed with him. Muhammad Durrani convicted of Durrani had raping a drunk passenger in 2016 pleaded not guilty, however, he was convicted on Friday 6th trying to get my bearings I April. He is remanded in was walking towards my custody and will be senhouse trying to find my tenced on Thursday 10th keys. Then he came out May. and said 'I will help'. I said 'thank you but I'm fine'. He followed me to my door. He then picked me up and carried me to the backseat.” Rumours, though at times juicy or Jurors heard that durspicy, can be hard to digest, espeing his police interview, cially if it involves toilet humour. Durrani claimed that the Prince Charles, who was asked in passenger had started to an interview at the hug and kiss him first outCommonwealth Games in side her house, hence he Australia regarding the rumours hugged and kissed her that he travels abroad with his back. He said, “She went own toilet seat, to which The into my car herself. She Prince of Wales rebuked, “My own was right outside her front

USA, has drawn from some of her experiences post 9/11, where she was subjected to hatred and racism. She said, “I learnt a lot of things that day; one of them was that the visceral rage of bigots mean they are immune to basic facts or civility. Though it was decades ago, that scene is perfectly etched in my memory – a moment of childhood innocence lost, shattered by ignorance and hatred. I knew then that I would forever be confronted by a choice: to cower or to speak.” This novel celebrates the power of making personal choices in a world that is determined to put tags on you and stereotype you. This novel is of hope and perseverance, and not letting anyone decide where you belong.

Prince Charles puts a lid on loo seat rumours

what? Oh don’t believe all that crap. The very idea.” The Prince’s director of communications, Julian Payne, later referenced the interview on Twitter: “The Prince and the Duchess’ tour of Australia and Vanuatu begins: 30 engagements, 7 days, 1 Commonwealth Games, 0 personal loo seats.”

Samira said, “ For those who bear the brunt of hate because of the colour of your skin or the sound of your name, for those who are spat upon, for those who are told to ‘go home,’ when you are home; you are known. You are loved. Let your light shine. I wrote this book for you.”



Asian Voice | AsianVoiceNews

14th April 2018

Diabetes awareness "major concern" for UK Asians Research explores cultural barriers to participation in healthcare programmes Reshma Trilochun South Asians living in the UK feel cut off and excluded from education or self-help programmes, preventing them from managing their diabetes properly, according to new research published in the journal Ethnicity and Health. With one in five diabetics worldwide of South Asian origin, the study, led by Anglia Ruskin University, examined perceived barriers to improved awareness of diabetes and self-help among different demographics the UK’s South Asian community and identified reasons why awareness of diabetes and uptake of programmes is so low. Researchers interviewed patients with type II diabetes who were categorised according to age, gender and literacy status, and found that barriers experienced by each demographic were different. In the literate groups, one of the barriers to improved diabetes awareness was that healthcare information was general and not specific to their diet and culture, while the illiterate groups cited language as a significant issue. There were also difficulties for all groups in adherence to diet through lack of knowledge of nutrition, and a lack of motivation to exercise. In addition, various barriers

were identified to self-help in the different groups. With food a strong element of South Asian social gatherings, some older females expressed concern at the difficulty in cooking separate meals for diabetics in the family, who in turn didn’t want to be a burden on the cook by asking for a healthier meal. Social and cultural pressures were also identified as significant barriers to a healthier lifestyle. Professor Shahina Pardhan, Director of the Vision and Eye Research Unit (VERU) within Anglia Ruskin University’s School of Medicine said, “South Asians are particularly at risk of developing diabetes, a condition that can lead to serious complications which may even lead to blindness. Self-help is vital as proper management of diabetes which can reduce complications and reduce the risk of blindness. Our study found many people

in the South Asian community simply weren’t aware of these self-help or improved awareness programmes, which is a major concern. Some feel cut off or excluded due to a lack of ethnically-tailored programmes or language difficulties. There were also issues with diet, partly due to a strong preference for South Asian food and a lack of nutritional awareness. Our study found different barriers across various demographics suggesting that different solutions are required and that one solution cannot fit all.” Asian Voice contacted Diabetes UK, a UK charity for people affected by diabetes. The Engaging Communities Manager, Krishna Sarda said, “South Asians are two to four times more likely to develop Diabetes at a much younger age and at a lower BMI (Body Mass Index). It is essential for South Asians to understand their risk and take appropriate measures to prevent the condition from developing. For those diagnosed with Diabetes, it is vital to manage the condition to avoid complications, such as damage to their eyes by prioritising their attendance at eye screening appointments. People can get in touch with Diabetes UK for support and help.”

Youth street crime leaves London bleeding With the rise in the recent murder rates in London, be it through gun crimes, stabbings, and with several deaths in one day, many people are not feeling safe in the city they consider as home. The rift in knife and gun crime has become so much so that we have even surpassed New York’s ranking. This is certainly worried and should make us all think of this plague killing our youth. The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Cressida Dick agrees that the force should reverse the decline in the use of stop-andsearch power, which has been denounced for targeting ethnic minorities. The Prime Minister and Mayor of London, however, have been receiving a lot of flak for failing to stop the wave of violence consuming London in the past few weeks. The Home secretary is said to have expressed regret to David Lammy, Labour MP for Tottenham, for failing to speak to him about the upsurge of violence in his constituency. David Lammy expressed, “Is a life in my constituency worth less than a life elsewhere in our country? I have had four young people lose their lives since Christmas and nor a single phone call or visit from the Prime Minister or Home Secretary. Where is the political consensus on a serious strategy?” The Labour MP for Walthamstow, Stella Creasy, has also criticised the

Amaan Shakoor

Theresa May on Twitter stating, “If you can come to our borough looking for votes as you did today… the least you can do is hear our call for help to tackle the violent crime we are experiencing.”

Amaan Shakoor dies after being shot in Walthamstow

A 15-year-old boy was stabbed and a 16-year-old boy was shot in Walthamstow on 2nd April. The 16year-old victim, Amaan Shakoor from Leyton died the following day in hospital at 5:45pm. A postmortem examination will be held in due course.

An 18-year-old man from east London was arrested on Monday 9th April on suspicion of murder. He has since been released under investigation. The victim's family are being supported by specialist officers. They have requested that their privacy is respected as they come to terms with the death of their loved one. The investigation is being led by Detective Chief Inspector Gary Holmes of the Met's Homicide and Major Crime Command. DCI Gary Holmes said, "This is a tragic murder of a young man which has shocked the local community and the rest of London, and our thoughts are with the victim's family at this incredibly difficult time. Serious violence on London's streets cannot be abided, and I would like to assure the local community that my officers and those on the Borough are working very hard to piece together what happened and identify those responsible for this violent incident which resulted in a teenager tragically being killed, and another seriously injured." Amaan Shakoor became the 48th victim to have been murdered in 2018. Anyone with information is asked to contact the incident room on 020 8345 1570 or via 101 quoting reference 6727/02 April or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. You can also tweet information to @MetCC


Labour candidate tangled in antisemitic scandal Amid Jeremy Corbyn being embroiled in controversies, it has now emerged that a Labour Council candidate has also been accused of antisemitism. Vice-p resident of the National Union of Students, Ali Milani, who has campaigned with Labour frontbenchers Kate Osamor and John McDonnell, is accused of allegedly stereotyping Jewish people as stingy in a tweet in 2012. The tweet read, “Nah you won't mate. It'll cost u a pound #jew.” It is said that Milani also allegedly questioned Israel's right to exist, as well as called TV presenter Piers Morgan a Zionist on social media. The comments were widely reported in 2017. Ali Milani is a Labour candidate, standing in Heathrow Villages in the May local elections. Labour Against Antisemitism filed a complaint against him to the Labour Party, accusing him of posting antisemitic content on social media, and have requested that Labour Party looks into this urgently. Spokesman doe Labour Against Antisemitism, Euan Philipps said, “It is outrageous that a person

Ali Milani

such as Mr Milani could have been selected to stand as a Labour Councillor when his appalling behaviour is on public record and easily available to anyone wishing to know his background.” Ali Milani stated, “I have and always will unreservedly apologise for the comments I made as a teenager. This issue was brought to the attention of the Labour Party two years ago and my apology was deemed sincere and since then, I have fervently campaigned against antisemitism, Islamophobia and racism. We all make mistakes and we must be willing to accept that most of us aren't chiselled from adolescence for public office.”

Dispensing error defence to become law Reshma Trilochun As from 16th April 2018 the defence from criminal prosecution for unintended dispensing errors by pharmacists will become law. The law will allow a pharmacy professional or unregistered member of staff to have a defence against a criminal condemnation for an accidental or unintentional dispensing error if they meet a set of conditions, which include showing they had acted “in the course of [their] profession”; that they had provided or sold a medicine on the back of a prescription or patient group directive; and had “promptly” notified the patient regarding the error, as soon as the error is detected. As per the law which is being implemented, criminal prosecution should only apply if there is evidence “beyond reasonable doubt” that the pharmacist or staff either abused their position and professional skills “for an improper purpose”, or displayed “a deliberate disregard for patient safety”.

In 2015, the Department of Health and Social Care reiterated that with this new law, failing to abide by the pharmacy's procedures would not represent grounds for criminal proceedings on its own. Asian Voice contacted the National Pharmacy Association (NPA) regarding the enforcement of this law. The Head of Claims at the NPA, Glyn Walduck said, “Over the years we have seen a number of prosecutions under Section 64 of The Medicines Act which have resulted in some pharmacists being unfairly convicted under a strict liability offence for making inadvertent dispensing errors. Criminal sanctions in such circumstances are disproportionate so we believe this new defence is a welcome and significant step forward. The change should enable prosecutors to use Section 64 only in the most reckless cases, thus promoting fairness, proportionality and importantly, enabling the profession to continue on the path of openness and learning from mistakes.”

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Asian Voice | 14th April 2018

Brits unite to say “No to Islamophobia”

People came together in Islington to say "No to Islamophobia"

Whilst letters of hatred attempting to coin 3rd April as “Punish a Muslim Day” were spread, people from across the UK came together on that very day to support Muslims. Stand Up To Racism, a campaign group worked alongside Muslim

groups, mosques, as well as other community and faith groups to arrange a “Day of Solidarity”, and had over 20 events scheduled throughout the country. London had eight events to encourage Britons to say “No to Islamophobia”, including regions such as Haringey,

Islington and Lewisham. Love A Muslim Day were also planned in Leeds, Wakefield, Sheffield, Nottingham and Bradford. People gathered at the steps of the Town Hall in Islington to hear speeches from Councillors at the “Respect a Muslim” rally.

British Asian magician wins London Stage Competition On Tuesday 27th March 2018, A British Asian magician, Girio, was yet again voted as best performer, when he won The London Society of Magicians’ (LSM’s) Bridger Lewis Stage Competition. Winning the Stage Competition means Girio is now a multi-award winning performer, after winning The LSM’s Close Up Competition just two years ago, in 2016. Uniquely dressed with his black and white shoes matching his black and white shirt, Girio dazzled the audience in London’s Charing Cross, not only with his attire but also with his incredible feats of mind reading and intuition. Girio said, “I’m extremely humbled. The fact that people in the audience voted for me as

Girio receiving his award from LSM's President Peter Baker

the best performer on the night means a lot. Only two years ago in 2016 I won The LSM’s Close Up Competition, where the same thing happened and so much has happened since then. “Only a few days before my Stage Competition win I also performed my sec-

ond show at The London Improv Theatre in Finchley Road for The Magicians Showcase, to a packed audience. In terms of numbers, my biggest performance on stage though (since winning the Close Up Competition), was when I performed to around 1,500 people at

Noreen Khan becomes new Patron of the Asian Women's Resource Centre, Brent Radio DJ, TV presenter and entrepreneur Noreen Khan has accepted the Asian Women's Resource Centre's invitation to support their organisation as a new Patron. They are a charity based in Harlesden in the London borough of Brent, which has been serving the local community and offering Pan-London services since 1980. As a charity, the Asian Women's Resource Centre provides invaluable services to all women and their children who are fleeing from domestic & sexual abuse, honour based violence, forced marriages, FGM (Female Genital Mutilation) and trafficking. Speaking about her new role as Patron, Noreen Khan said, “I am honoured that I have been asked by

the Asian Women’s Resource Centre to become their Patron, a position which I accepted without hesitation. The Asian Women’s Resource Centre have been providing vital services to women, girls and children for over three decades and during this time they have developed an expertise in supporting BME women

Karuna Manor care home in Harrow is opening its doors and welcoming visitors to tour their facilities on Saturday 21st April between 10am – 3pm. As part of the National Care Home Open Day 2018, Karuna Manor is showcasing their unique facilities, in an action-packed Saturday at the home. Some of the facilities at Karuna Manor include; a temple with resident priest, Yagna Shala, landscaped sensory gardens, cinema, therapy spa com-

plete with hair salon and a nail bar. The idea behind the Care Home Open Day is to encourage local people to visit care homes in their community and to work together to develop better relationships. This important connection is something that Karuna Manor has nurtured since opening in 2015 and the home is already acting as a community hub for local groups. Ruth Kigaa, Home Manager at the home said, “This is a great way to

The Darji Mitra Mandal’s Sammelan Event at Harrow Leisure Centre. It was great to be part of such a huge event that supported Asian talent and the Asian community. The support I’ve had from the Asian Community has been phenomenal.” Shortly after Girio’s Close Up Competition win, he had his first performance for The Darji Mitra Mandal at their Friday Club event. Shortly after Girio’s Stage Competition win, he’ll be performing again for the first time – this time at The East Finchley Festival, which takes place on Sunday 24th June 2018 at Cherry Tree Wood in East Finchley.

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before fleeing with money and cigarettes. The robbers are

described as Asian males. One was in his 20s wearing a black coat and dark

Noreen Khan

affected by VAWG. I wholeheartedly support the work that the Asian Women’s Resource Centre do in order to eliminate violence against women and girls and I am proud to stand alongside them. I am committed and passionate about ending violence against women and girls and I am looking forward to working with the Asian Women’s Resource Centre.” The Director of the Asian Women's Resource Centre, Sarbjit Ganger said, “We at the Asian Women’s Resource Centre are really excited and thrilled to have Noreen Khan as our Patron. Noreen Khan will help raise not only our profile but highlight the importance of BME specialist organisations that provide lifesaving services for women experiencing VAWG.”

Open Day at Karuna Manor Care Home

Robbers attack staff during 6.30am raid at One Stop store

Police are hunting robbers after staff at a One Stop shop were attacked during an early-morning raid. The crooks struck at around 6.30am at the store in Drakes Cross Parade in Hollywood, Wythall. Three men attacked and threatened staff


trousers, a second was described as being of large build, in his 20s and wearing glasses. The third robber is described as skinny, in his 20s and was wearing a navy coloured jumper. There is no description of the fourth male, who was waiting outside in a dark coloured BMW.

showcase our fantastic facilities and more importantly the loving care of our residents at Karuna Manor. Some people still have misconceptions about care homes, so we are keen to dispel any myths and for people to come and have a look around, meet the staff and our residents.” You can see details of the full programme for the day at or contact Anand Bhatt on 0208 1080121.

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14th April 2018

CHOGM Awaits Modi

Continued from page 1

For the first time, all four forums will come together under one roof on Tuesday 17 April at the QEII Centre. A number of high-profile speakers are expected to take part throughout the three days. The UK will host a reception, curated by the GREAT Britain campaign, to showcase the best of the UK’s export examples through music, sport and technology. This will include the Premier League trophy, the men and women’s Cricket World Cup trophies, food and drink sourced from across the whole of the UK. Alongside this, exhibits from the Commonwealth Fashion Exchange will be on display. On Wednesday 18 April the UK Foreign Secretary will host Commonwealth Foreign Ministers as they undertake the preparatory work on the key themes for the Heads of Government meeting. Thursday 19 April will mark the start of the Heads of Government programme. The Mall, Parliament Square and Windsor will be lined with the flags of the Commonwealth as Heads of Government, Foreign Ministers and guests gather in Buckingham Palace. Those travelling in and around the area can expect to see ceremonial elements, including a Commonwealth Guard of Honour and a 53 gun salute. Following this, all Heads of Government will be welcomed by the UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, and Commonwealth Secretary-General, Patricia Scotland, before starting the Executive Sessions at Lancaster House. Working sessions, which will be chaired by the UK Prime Minister, will focus on the key priorities of the summit - prosperity, security, sustainability and fairness. On Thursday evening, Her Majesty The Queen will host a dinner for leaders and their spouses at

Buckingham Palace. The UK Foreign Secretary will also host a dinner for his counterparts. In keeping with Commonwealth tradition on the final day of the summit, Heads of Government will gather at Windsor Castle for the Leaders’ Retreat. This is designed to allow frank dialogue. On the conclusion of the Retreat, a communique is published which sets the decisions and commitments that leaders have made.

Tentative itinerary for Modi visit The PM will arrive in London from Sweden on April 17th night. On April 18th at 8.30am (BST) there will be a UK-India Bilateral talks at Number 10. Indian PM in expected to sign the memorandum agreeing that 100,000 illegal immigrants return to India from here. Between 12-3pm, protests will be held against Modi. Pakistan origin British MP Lord Nazir is leading protests outside the parliament. To counter that, Indians from the diaspora plan to counter that in large numbers to support the PM. From 5.30 to 7.30 pm, Modi will be meeting Indians living in the UK in an event called ‘Bharat Ki Baat, Sabke Saath’. A ballot has collected registrations from the NRI community across the UK and Europe and even the US. 1500 people will be selected to attend this meeting with Modi at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre. On other occasions he will be joining his counterparts as mentioned above.

Events celebrating the Commonwealth spirit Alongside the summit, a number of other organisations have Commonwealth themed events taking place to highlight and celebrate the Commonwealth. These include:

Appeal to find 22-year-old man missing from Hillingdon Police are appealing for help to find a 22-year-old man who is missing from the Hillingdon area. Satvir Singh was last seen leaving his home address in Hayes at 8:30am on Saturday 7th April. He has not been seen since. Satvir was wearing a red top and dark trousers whilst carrying a Sainsbury's shopping bag. Satvir is not believed to be in possession of any bank card, oyster card or mobile phone. He is known to frequent the Hayes area, Brunel University and Southall. His disappearance is out of character and his family and police are concerned for his welfare. Anyone who has seen Satvir is asked to contact Hillingdon police via 101.

l A special Commonwealth Evensong at Westminster Abbey (15 April at 3pm) l Research Vessel Endeavour moored alongside HMS Belfast on the Thames (17 and 18 April), educating school children about the important work it is doing to protect our oceans; l Commonwealth-themed openings of the London Stock Exchange; l Global Citizen concert at Brixton Academy featuring Emeli Sandé and Professor Green (17 April); l Malaria Summit aims to unite leaders of government, business and science to take action to eliminate this disease (Wednesday 18 April); l Birmingham will host a Commonwealth Games homecoming celebration (21 April);

Cultural events In addition to this, many UK cultural institutions have Commonwealthrelated events and exhibitions, including the Government Art Collection, Wallace Collection, Science Museum, British Museum, British Library, National Portrait Gallery, amongst others. These institutions are hosting tours, talks, lectures, musical performances and the first Commonwealth film festival. Delivered in partnership with the Eden Project, these lunches encourage people across the Commonwealth to come together, share food and learn about the Commonwealth. Over 200 lunches will have taken place including: 30,000 students and staff at Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences in India, in an East London community centre, on board the RRS James Cook off the coast of South Africa, in schools across the Commonwealth, on beaches, in village halls and in places of worship. During the summit week, a Commonwealth Big Lunch will take place at the first joint forum day with the 2,000 attendees.

Harrow schoolboy scores highest Mensa result possible A schoolboy who achieved the highest score possible on the Mensa test said he felt ‘very blessed’ to have done so well. Advik Balaji, who is 11-years-old from South Harrow, took the two-hour test on March 25 and achieved 162, the highest possible score for children under 18, qualifying him for Mensa membership. The highest score for adults is 161. A score in the top two per cent will prompt an invitation to join Mensa. Advik Balaji attends Grange Primary School in Harrow where he is in his final year. He is getting

Five bailed in attempted murder inquiry Five men, arrested in connection with a shooting in Bedfordshire on Thursday evening, have been released on bail. A 47-year-old imam, who asked not to be named, was shot at three times in Portland Road, Luton. Two shots missed, while the third hit him in the arm. A second man, 30, was seriously injured

after being shot in the face and remains in hospital. Five men, aged 21, 26, 28, 30 and 32, arrested on suspicion of attempted murder were released on bail. Det Insp Aaron Kiff, leading the investigation for Bedfordshire Police, said: "We are continuing to follow a number of lines of inquiry into this incident, which we are treating as isolated, and

would again urge anyone with information that could help the investigation to contact us." The imam, who chased a car down the road and threw a brick at it after one of its occupants shot him in the arm, said he was targeted shortly after he left his mosque following evening prayers, at about 21:50 BST.


Prince Harry and Meghan ask for charity donation as wedding gift

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle who are gearing up to wed on 19th May, have asked people to donate to charities instead of sending them a wedding gift. The Royal couple have chosen seven charities so that “as many people as possible benefit from this [public] generosity of spirit,” Kensington Palace said. Those invited to the wedding have been given the option to either give a present or donate to charity. When the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge got married in 2011, over £1 million was raised in donation.

A spokesperson said, "The couple have chosen charities which represent a range of issues that they are passionate about, including sport for social change, women's empowerment, conservation, the environment, homelessness, HIV and the Armed Forces. Prince Harry and Ms Markle do not have any formal relationships with the charities chosen." The seven charities are CHIVA; Crisis; The Myna Mahila Foundation; Scotty’s Little Soldiers; StreetGames; Surfers Against Sewage; and The Wilderness Foundation UK.

Mosque in Outer Hebrides will open this year after crowdfunding campaign

The first mosque in the Outer Hebrides will open this summer after backers raised more than £50,000 in an online appeal

ready to go secondary school this September. He lives with his father Gothandaraman, mother Sangeetha, and sister Asmitha, who is 7. In preparation for secondary school, Advik has written to eight grammar school and been accepted to all. His favourite subjects in school are maths and science, and he loves football.

The first mosque in the Outer Hebrides will open this summer after backers raised more than £50,000 in an online appeal. It is expected to open despite the Presbyterian Free Church urging its followers to pray that ‘no mosque will ever appear in Stornoway’, the main town on the Isle of Lewis where a house is to be converted. A crowdfunding campaign for the mosque, which has been granted planning permission by the Western Isles Council, raised £56,000 within days of being started by builder

Aihtsham Rashid. The 39-year-old from Leeds had been contacted by the growing Syrian community on Lewis, whose relatively small numbers were recently swollen by the arrival of six refugee families from the war-torn country. Mr Rashid said: ‘Against all odds and opposition from the Free Church of Scotland they have now been granted permission to build. I have been personally requested to go up and help them with the build and planning due to my experience in building mosques.’

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Bestway rescues Conviviality as high street retailers continue to teeter Cecil Soans The retail division of troubled drinks group Conviviality Retail has been rescued by leading food wholesaler Bestway Wholesale, the wholesale arm of Bestway Group in a £7.5m deal. The takeover means Conviviality's retail chains Wine Rack and Bargain Booze will avoid losing over 2000 jobs. Included in the deal are other Conviviality businesses Select Convenience and WS Retail. Conviviality Retail has 769 stores in the UK, mainly operating through franchise models. The prepack administration process, which was completed by Bestway on Friday last week allows the buyer to pick and choose a falling company’s best assets at a bargain price. In March this year Conviviality dramatically collapsed after failing to secure funding from shareholders. It's chief executive Diana Hunter stepped down from the board last month. Commenting on the deal, Zameer Choudrey CBE, Chief Executive Officer of Bestway Group, said “We feel this acquisition represents a great fit for both Bestway Wholesale and Conviviality’s retail base. This deal provides much needed certainty to these stores and our priority will be to stabilise the supply of stock into these businesses. These retailers can get back to ‘business as usual’ with the confidence of having the support of the UK’s largest independent wholesaler”. “We are also pleased that as a result of the deal we have been able to provide job security to over 2,300 colleagues, who have incredible expertise and experience that will truly be a great asset to our

Sir Anwar Pervez OBE, Founder, Chairman, Bestway Group

Zameer Choudrey CBE, CEO Bestway Group

combined business. By stepping in we have also ensured the franchisee stores get the support they need and deserve to grow their businesses, as well as continuing to provide choice for shoppers on the high street.” Dawood Pervez, Trading Director of Bestway Wholesale commented, “The purchase of these four businesses will further strengthen our position within the convenience retail sector. We provide our suppliers with a safe and credible trading partner that will provide access to a vastly increased, and the most disciplined, route to market in the independent convenience sector.”

Excellence), by the President of Pakistan on 23rd March 2018, in recognition of his contributions to Pakistan through his services and the wide array of philanthropic work. Sitara-e-Imtiaz is one of Pakistan’s highest civilian honours for public service.

Bestway Group Founded and chaired by the billionaire Sir Anwar Pervez, Bestway Group is one of Britain’s biggest food wholesaler serving thousands of retailers. It also owns the Well Pharmacy chain, which it purchased from Co-operative Pharmacy four years ago. Bestway Cement has grown from a start-up to Pakistan’s second largest cement producer with an annual capacity of 6 million tonnes while providing employment to over 3,000 people. The group's Chief Executive Zameer Choudrey was awarded the Sitara-e-Imtiaz (Star of

Retail woes continue Britain’s high street retailers have been witnessing a string of closures and restructuring. Both Debenhams and House of Fraser reported disappointing Christmas sales last year. TK Max, Pandora and New Look have all seen a fall in hight street sales. On the contrary online sales of Next and Debenhams have seen improvement. Industry sources say that this is mostly due to the fall in disposable incomes. Households have seen a rise in income averaging 2.2% while inflation has risen 3%. Due to a post-EU referendum economy, with uncertainty forcing companies to delay investment, the gloom over average wages doesn’t look like rising strongly any time soon meaning uncertain times for high street retailers. Several well-known restaurants have sought a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) in a bid to cut costs, as tough trading conditions on the UK high street continue.

Man sentenced for causing death by careless driving Kul Pandey, 56, has been sentenced for causing death by careless driving after a fatal collision involving a member of the House of Lords in 2016. Shortly after 6pm on 16th November 2016, Thomas Taylor, Lord of Blackburn, was critically injured when his mobility scooter was in collision with a lorry on Millbank, close to the junction with Great College Road, SW1. The 88-year-old peer died on 25 November 2016. The Mercedes lorry was being driven by Kul Pandey, 56, of Feltham. Pandey stopped at the scene. An investigation by

Lord Taylor Lord Thomas Taylor of Blackburn died in 2016

detectives from the Met's Roads and Transport Policing Command (RTPC) established that Pandey had failed to see Lord Taylor as he crossed Millbank on a zebra crossing. Pandey was charged,

and pleaded guilty to causing death by careless driving at the Old Bailey on 20th March. He was sentenced on Monday 9th April to 24 weeks' imprisonment suspended for two years, and 200 hours community service. He was also disqualified from driving for three years. Lord Taylor's family said in a statement: "The family of the late Lord Taylor would like to thank the Metropolitan Police for their help, kindness and compassion shown throughout the last 18 months. No feelings of hatred or loathing will turn the clock back. We all have to try to move on with our lives."

14th April 2018

Curry house bosses displeased over EU migrants priority plan

Curry house bosses who voted Leave during the 2016 Referendum feel “let down” after getting to know that EU migrants may receive priority access to the UK after their exit from the European Union. It is alleged that ministers may be drawing up a plan for EU citizens to get preferential access from workers from other nations in sectors where there is a short supply of skills as an agreement to offer in trade negotiations with the EU. However, this suggested plan is said to have caused bitter disapproval from leaders in the curry industry in the UK – an

industry worth £4.3 billion. Leading figures from the curry industry were enticed into backing Leave during the referendum as they were promised that Brexit would make it easier to bring top and prominent chefs from the South Asian region. Organising secretary of the Bangladesh Caterers Association, Mitu Chowdhury told the media, “We attended every single campaign meeting with Boris Johnson, Priti Patel and Michael Gove and they said that the British curry industry would be a first priority. We think we have been let down.” Chowdhury also

believes that giving preference to EU workers would “be a disaster” and could have curry houses pushed right at the back of the queue when it comes to visas. He said, “Every day, one or two more restaurants close down and in most cases it is because they cannot find the skilled staff.” The founder of the British Curry Awards, Enam Ali stated, “On many occasions we recall Boris Johnson and others say it was very important that we could bring in chefs from outside the EU because the market needed it. But now it seems as if nobody is entertaining the idea.”

Healthcare tycoon looking to sell £100m of healthcare services The healthcare tycoon who made millions of pounds from the sale of the Priory rehab clinics, Chai Patel, 63, is looking to vend a provider of support services to patients with mental health and learning difficulties for £100 million. City sources revealed that Court Cavendish, which is controlled by

Patel, had asked bankers at NM Rothschild to find a buy for Care Management Group. Chai Patel, who was born in Uganda but left the country when Ugandan Asians were being expelled by Idi Amin, attained Care Management during the financial crisis and has 120 sites across the UK.

Chai Patel


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Asian Voice | AsianVoiceNews

14th April 2018

Cancelled Indian Currency Notes: Not worth the Paper

In the issue 24/03/2018 of Asian Voice, a letter by Neera and Nitin Patel titled 'Let's use cancelled Indian currency for a better cause' was published. It was also presented to the Governor of the Reserve Bank of India, and Rahul Gandhi via email. Associations like NRI and JIOPIO had also made several attempts, however, no proper solution has been derived yet. May be the bureaucrats find this problem trivial, or there is no misuse of their money so they aren't least bit worried. Unfortunately, Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar's failure in addressing this particular issue properly comes to light. During the Hare Krishna temple and Air India's direct Ahmedabad to London campaigns, they did not leave any stone unturned. Result of their efforts were seen following the change in Indian governance. NRIs have a grim issue. There are several answers, but there won't be any changes to the politics. Yes, if the pound or dollar deposited in India was to be affected, no time would be lost in changing necessary law. Regarding the topic of charity, there are several organisations in India who engage in charity. It is difficult to imagine when they will shut down. The primary question is, what to do with the banned notes? Why can't the Indian government make any solid decisions for the NRIs? CB Patel may be involved in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to UK. He possibly will meet PM Modi. This will prove as a prime opportunity to discuss the unfairness of the situation. An arrangement to help resolve the tensions of all NRIs and giving them their money back is a necessity. Call it a forced compulsion of the NRIs living in the UK, but there is no point even in receiving back the banned currency notes from banks. However, given that they hold British passports, the British government or the Foreign Ministry will help them get a solution, or, the media will help them find the much needed attention. Dr Pravin Kalaiya Essex

Former Panjab - once the crown of Indian land

In reference to Mr Amrik Singh's letter dated 7-42018 former Panjab, once the land of five rivers, is divided and the east part of it is felt safe in India by the valorous Sikh community which has become the pride of Hindu, Jain and Buddhist; and truly speaking, the Sikhs have experienced from the past events that they are being used by others who have their own interests; and as such the writer has reminded some of the members of his community here in Britain to be aware of the situation while Mr Modi is to be attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting. The foreigners remained attacking India ruthlessly for centuries finding themselves strong and well organised against the people in states of former India whose non-violent and sober culture,division in religious and philosophical outlook and adherence to just and strict war discipline at any cost was sufficient to consider them weak to attack their country again and again; and in this situation the valorous Sikhs armed themselves to defend the nation from the north-west frontier,and as such they are being honoured by the nation,and kept in high esteem for ever. But the cruelty and injustice ended while the British government,truly realising Mahatma Gandhi's non-violence policy having strong effect,withdrew power resulting the situation for Saradar Vallabhbhai Patel who became the deputy Prime minister and Home minister, to unite the 562 princely states for the creation of strong India which became a strong partner in the Commonwealth countries in which neighbourly relations are hoped to be cordial and coordinate. R.N.Patel By email


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“I am Malala”

She just wanted girls her age to be able to go to school. Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan was the youngest recipient of the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize for her efforts in advocating the right of education for children and women. In 2012, she was targeted by the Taliban and severely wounded by a gun-shot when returning home from school. The then-15-year-old was singled out, along with her father, for advocating for girl’s education. After recuperating, she continued to speak out despite death threats. In 2013, she addressed the United Nations Organisation exhorting that, “One child, one teacher, one book, and one pen can change the world.” When receiving the Nobel Peace Prize, Malala implored, “I have the right of education. I have the right to play. I have the right to sing. I have the right to talk. I have the right to go to the market. I have the right to speak up.” Her courageous voice illustrates that the power of active non-violence is greater than violence and intimidation. We could take a lesson from her. Jubel D’Cruz, Mumbai, India

Would compulsory ID put off voters?

Voters’ fraud, especially in the ethnic minority dominated areas of East London, like Tower Hamlet, Barking, Walthamstow, as well as Birmingham has prompted Government to experiment with photo ID cards for certain areas prone to such frauds. In common with increasing crimes and decreasing moral standards, it is inevitable that voters’ fraud will affect some areas, especially where there is stiff rivalry between two candidates from the same culture, similar background where winning the election becomes personal crusade and matter of pride. Some fear that asking for photo ID at polling stations may put-off some voters and some, especially older generation may not have photo ID. This may affect voters’ turnout which is indeed low, especially at local elections. In this day and age, hardly any one lacks photo ID, as such ID is needed everywhere, including opening bank and building society accounts. In fact most people have several photo IDs and that include passport, driving licence, freedom pass and membership of professional bodies as well as union membership. Yet, it is possible that a very tiny minority among older generation may not have such identity. As most Councils have shown willingness to help these people, it is a step in the right direction. So the forthcoming local election in May will indeed be a test. If turnout fell significantly in these wards, then government should carry-out in-depth investigation and act accordingly. In any case it is better to have a lower but honest turn-out than swell voters’ figure with fraud. The best solution is to make voting compulsory, as is the case in many progressive countries like Australia, NZ, South Korea, Singapore and many more. But as usual, we are the last to adopt new, progressive ideas! Kumudini Valambia By email

For the love of God

People believe in God but where is their love for humanity? In many countries like Syria, Yemen, Lebanon, Nigeria, Libya, etc, etc, everyday we hear and see on TV about the deaths of thousands of innocent and helpless citizens either by bombardment, starvation or cholera epidemic. Since the last 4 years, there is war in Syria. The most pathetic scene of bombardment of hospitals and homes, small crying children with blood flowing from their bodies are being pulled out. Please for the sake of humanity stop this barbaric act. Myanmar (also known as Burma) where the majority of people are Buddhists. Instead of following the teaching of Buddha, they evicted over half a million Rohingya to Bangladesh (previously East Pakistan). To reach very far there were many pregnant women, mothers with newly born babies, small kids, old and fragile people and on the way countless people died from hunger and starvation. God has given lots of different treasures to all the different countries of the world, then why can’t they live like ‘Vasudhaika Kutumbam - One Family’. Sudha Rasik Bhatt Glasgow

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Protests against PM Modi’s visit

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s attendance at the CHOGM Conference and the protest organised by Lord Nazir and the counter protest by the Indian community raises some fundamental issues. No doubt Prime Minister Modi, as a strong Prime Minister, has his ardent supporters and vehement critics but a Pakistani member of the House of Lords leading a protest against a visiting Prime Minister of a Commonwealth country is a new and dangerous development. No doubt Indian supporters will outnumber Modi detractors. I believe that Indians in the UK, especially in Greater London, are seething with anger against Lord Nazir and other Pakistani inspired protesters. No doubt the Indian supporters of Modi will outnumber those of his opponents. I, as an Indian origin UK citizen, will certainly attend to oppose anti-India protestors. Arvind Patel Wembley

On a knife edge

We understand from media reports that knife crime in this country is again on the rise. Two young men were stabbed to death in London within the space of just over an hour last week. So far, in the first three months of this year, 50 people have lost their life through knife crime. The worrying figures published indicate that the number of knife and gun crime offences went up by an alrming rate last year. There was a rise of 23% in knife crime in the capital meaning a higher murder rate than New York. Upto September last year, the incidence was 12,980 in London and 37,443 in the UK. Knife crime in the UK has overtaken the gun culture in America. Thank God the acid attacks which were more prevelant last year are in the wane after severe punishments were meted out to the culprits. Would similar harsh punishments for knife crime make any difference? Imagine yourself being confronted by man weilding a knife and threatening to harm you. It must be a very frightening experience. People who are victims would probably live the rest of their lives on a knife edge, being jittery and afraid to go out any time of day or night. It has been suggested by some that increased jail sentences for the culprits may be an answer. However, the poor victims of knife crime would probably live the rest of their life on a knife edge. Dinesh Sheth Newbury Park, Ilford

Rise and rise of India

Since NDA, under the leadership of BJP took reign at the Center, with dynamic, patriotic PM Modi at the helm, India has made tremendous progress, especially turning India’s economy from the rural agricultural base to a mixture of agriculture, industry and service. With freely available, highly educated and dedicated workforce, Western conglomerates are bending backward to open “Call Center” in India. I am sure most readers would have experienced talking to a polite operator, mostly young, articulate girls based in Delhi, Bangalore or in Mumbai, the financial Capital of India, as well as the heart of Bollywood. Our service industry is taking fair advantage of this cheap, highly skilled labour market that provides well paid white collar jobs, especially to young graduates. Now India is destined to replace Britain as the fifth biggest economy, based on national GDP. With the success of Modi’s “Made in India” policy still to blossom and India taking giant step to become the third most visited nation on tourist front within a decade with medical tourism playing an important role, creating some tem million jobs, there is no stopping. No wonder many young Indians who come here for studies and used to stay on, are going back in droves, many finding good jobs, being recruited from here. India being such a vast and varied nation with population rising fast, unemployment will always be a problem, lingering on the horizon for the unscrupulous politicians to take advantage of. Indian politics is dynamic, on roller coaster and politicians are prepared to go to any length to win but election is fair, as “Election Commissioner” enjoys enormous power and uses it wisely. Bhupendra M. Gandhi By email

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14th April 2018

Students with weak A-level Student loan repayment grades attaining top degrees threshold rises

According to recent figures, more than one in six university students with weak A-level results graduated with a firstclass degree in summer 2017. Figures from the Office for Students reveal that over a fourth of all students received a first-class degree while ¾ received a first or 2:1. Figures showed that 95% of entrants with three A* grades at A-level graduated with a first or upper second-class degree last year. However, 67% of those who were graded CCD or below at A- level also attained a first or 2:1 degree. This raises questions about degree grade inflation. Furthermore, according to the report, more female students gained a first or upper second-class degree than male students - 81% of female graduates

compared with 76%of males. According to the director of education and employment at the University of Buckingham, Alan Smithers, “It is now easy to get a first that what was once a rare accolade has become almost meaningless. When so many are being awarded, even to those with very poor Alevels, what value can they have to employers? In pursuit of league table positions and students, universities are in danger of killing the golden goose that sustains them.” Schools have expressed their concerns about universities competing for students by offering unconditional offers. What seems to be the crux here is that people are concerned that students are acquiring their first or 2:1 degrees “easily”. However, the argu-

ment that students who may have been mediocre during their A-levels may have worked extensively and dedicatedly to ensure they pass their course with flying colours, has been disregarded. There may be students who gained A*-C as their A-level grades who went on to acquire a 2:2 or a third-class degree. The suggested reason behind this could be students partying excessively or becoming too arrogant and believing they will get high marks because they did exceedingly well in your A-levels. You cannot suggest that courses have become extremely easy, hence, students with poor A-levels receiving first-class or 2:1 degrees; if that were the case then probably everyone studying for a degree would leave with an enviable grade.

The Higher Education Policy Institute has published new rankings in which the University of Cambridge has been termed as being the most unequal university. The director of the Higher Education Policy Institute, Nick Hillman

said that the biggest obstacle to change was the fear amid those who dominate reputable universities that they could be forced out. The report suggests that the University of Cambridge is the least equal, followed by St

Andrews, Bristol, Oxford, Aberdeen and Edinburgh, whereas Hull was labelled as being the most equal. A spokesperson at the University of Cambridge said it “invests efforts each year in outreach activities across the UK to raise aspirations.”

According to a research conducted by the National Union of Students, sexual harassment by lecturers is prevalent with two fifths of students experiencing behaviour, which can be connoted as sexualised behaviour by university staff. According to the research which questioned

over 1,800 current and former students as well as analysed statistics from four focus groups, most of the perpetrators were academics. The National Union of Students worked alongside the 1752 Group, a research organisation which campaigns to end sexual misconduct in higher educa-

tion. Four out of ten respondents claimed to have experienced at least one occurrence of sexual jokes, comments and unwanted touching from staff. The report also suggests that women were more likely to have been victims and to have been negatively affected, in comparison to men.

University of Cambridge listed as unequal

Many sexual harassers are academics

Shantaben Gulabbhai Desai's sad demise



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Former students will be able to earn more before they have to start paying back their tuition fee loans. English and Welsh students who took out loans from September 2012 onwards - when fees in England rose to up to £9,000 a year - will now start to pay back when they earn £25,000 a year instead of £21,000. The government says the move could save graduates up to £360 a year. The National Union of Students said the change was "welcome relief" for many. The Department for Education says some 600,000 graduates will benefit over the next financial year alone. Previously, the repayment threshold for postSeptember 2012 loans had been frozen at £21,000 until 2020-21, but last autumn Prime Minister Theresa May announced a rise in the threshold from this new financial year.

The change will also lower the repayments of those earning over £25,000, as the percentage of salary paid back will be on a smaller amount. Research carried out by the Institute for Fiscal Studies found raising the repayment threshold to £25,000 benefits middle-

repay their loans in full will see a reduction in yearly repayments, this will merely extend the period of time for which they have to repay and so will make little difference to their lifetime repayments. IFS economist Laura van der Erve said:

earning graduates the most, saving them up to £15,700 in repayments over their lifetimes. Lower-earning graduates, who are likely to earn below the threshold for a significant part of their career, will see a smaller reduction in lifetime repayments, the IFS calculates. While high-earning graduates - who would

"Overall, repayments will fall by around £10,000 for the average graduate as a result of the threshold increase. “This will significantly increase the long-run cost to the government of providing higher education. The long-run cost to the government will increase by more than £2bn a year, an increase of nearly 40%."



Asian Voice | AsianVoiceNews

14th April 2018

The Kashmir valley should have been in seasonal bloom, but was, alas, in flames following multiple armed encounters between Indian security forces and jihadi terrorists in Shopian and Anantag, with 12 of the latter and three soldiers losing their lives. To this list must be included four civilians. Around 100 stone-throwing protestors were injured as the security forces replied with tear gas and gun fire. Pro-jihadi protestors appeared in force, raining stones on the police and army. Train services in the Valler were suspended and schools, colleges and shops closed.

Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore.

Kharagpur fifth, JNU-Delhi sixth, IIT-Kanpur seventh, IIT-Roorkie eighth, BHU ninth and Anna University, Chennai 10th; IITGuwahati dropped from the list of first ten IITs to 12th place.

Top colleges

Mobs of stone throwers in Kashmir

Hurriyat strike call Separatist Hurriyat leadership including Syed Ali Shah Geelani,Mirwaz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik were arrested. Geelani wants Kashmir to merge with Pakistan, while Yasin Malik calls for an independent Kashmir, issued a two-day strike call. Meanwhile General Officer Commanding, Lt General A.K Bhatt, briefing the media, said: ‘Among the slain terrorists, two were involved in the killing of Lt Umar Fayez in May 2017.’ The dead terrorists were named as Rayees Thokar and Ishfaq who belonged to the Hizbul Mujahideen.

Intelligence inputs rise According to the Jammu and Kashmir police chief S.M. Vaid, most of the jihadis were post2016 recruits. The silver lining is the active cooperation of ordinary families and the intelligence they supply which in recent times have enabled security forces from mounting coordinated strikes to devastating effect (Hindu 2, 5) The challenge posed by Hurriyat is not simply local; it has wider ramifications, key to which is the establishment of an Islamic state, engineered by external players such as IIS, al Qaeda and Taliban. The consequences for Indian security would be dire if this were to fructify.

Dalits on rampage Dalits across north India went on a rampage believing their rights as a disadvantaged community were being diluted by a Supreme Court order. The central government, in desperate straits, appealed to the court to revisit its ruling. However, the court turned down the appeal, arguing that no erosion or affront to Dalit sensibilities were envisaged in its judgment, which had only addressed abuses and infringement of individual

rights. Dalit agitation, said the justices, was based on misperception. Be that as it may, continuing sporadic violence against Dalits and the lack of jobs may sparked the violence but provided no enduring solution.

Violence no solution Violence is counter-productive. It makes the situation even more fraught in an endless cycle of frustration and despair. A work by a Mumbai-based author several years ago told of the careers of millionaire Dalits, who had returned to the villages of their childhood and youth to engage in philanthropic activity, one of which was to restore derelict temples from which had once between forbidden to enter because of their alleged lowly birth.Progress may have been slower than desired, but violence has nothing tangible to offer in the long or short run. (Times of India, Economic Times, Hindu April 3).

RSS appeal Surprisingly, it was the RSS leadership who injected common sense and a measure of vision. RSS head Mohan Bhagwat said there was no place factionalism in the making of a new India, that terms like ‘Congress-free India’ or ‘Sanghfree India’ had polarized political life in the country. The opposition as much the government had a constructive role in nation building, he said, which was encouraging to hear and read (Hindu April 2).

Educational Rankings The Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore has continued its dominance in the higher education category. Among the other institutions of merit were IIT-Madras in second place, with the foremost record in engineering; IIT-Bombay came third, IIT-Delhi fourth, IIT-

Miranda House, Delhi, was ranked first, St Stephen’s College, Delhi second, Bishop Heber Tiruchirappali (Kerala) third, Hindu College, Delhi fourth and Presidency College, Chennai, fifth. Also on the list were Shri Ram College of Commerce, Delhi, and Lady Shri Ram college, Delhi.

JLR India for new models as sales surge Tata Motors Jaguar Land Rover announced plans to bring new products in India during 2018-19 in response to the extraordinary 83 per cent surge in its sales last fiscal ending March 31. ‘Our Jaguar car

Medical institutes First was AIIMs, Delhi, second PGIMER, Chandigarh, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, fifth, King George’s Medical University, Lucknow.

Management IIM Ahmedabad, first, IIM Bangalore, second, IIM Calcutta, third, IIM, Lucknow, fourth, IIM, Bombay, fifth Law. Three top places in this category are: National Law School of India, Bangalore, National Law University, Delhi, and Nalsar University of Law, Hyderabad. The categories in the above list were made by the Ministry of Human Resource Development in Delhi (Times of India April 4).

Chennai company buys top Serbian brand Leading Chennai-based tractor manufacturer and exporter, TAFE, has bought iconic Serbian tractor and agriculture equipment brand IMT. Industrija Masina I Traktora, the Belgrade-based tractor brand was one of the largest manufacturers of agricultural machinery in the region before it slipped into bankruptcy and ceased production in 2015. Mallika Srinivasan, CEO of TAFE said she could neither confirm nor deny the rumoured price of the acquisition. ‘With the acquisition by TAFE, the generation, the production of IMT tractors is expected to recommence in about 12 months’ time. We will support them with the supply of components and aggregates for the rollout of tractors.’ (Business Line April 4).

sales were driven almost equally by the Jaguar and Land Rover brands,’ said JLR India Managing Director Rohit Suri (Business Line April 4).

Maruti’s 50 per cent market share Maruti Suzuki has 50 per cent market share. The country’s biggest car maker sold 1.5 million units for the first time since its arrival in India three decades ago. It has been an astonishing rise from near obscurity to luminous eminence. Maruti Suzuki Chairman R.C. Bhagarva said the company’s investment in diesel technology when the fuel was cheaper than petrol, as well as in new models and sales networks had helped it expand its market share. It has been a performance of legendary scale, a niche in India’s industrial history like no other brand (Economic Times April 4).

Setback for GSLV 6A GSLV SAT 6A Mission designed for a geosynchronous position 36,000 km above Earth ran into difficulty in the third manoevre to raise its orbit when communications with the satellite from ISRO’s ground control station were lost. Attempts to restore communications have thus far been unsuccessful, but efforts are still being made to retrieve the situation. The mission has not been officially aborted but hopes of doing so are receding by the day.

India pips Japan in steel production In a major shift in the tectonic plates, India has passed Japan as


the world’s second largest manufacturer of raw steel. China is first in league producing 50 per cent of the world’s total. India surpassed the US in 2015. India’s current steel production stands at 93.311 million tones. Nikunj Turakhia, of the Steel Users Federation of India, said: ‘ The government has taken a host of steps to curb imports, push local demand with initiatives like “Make in India”, implementing GST and fast tracking projects, to encourage the domestic market.’ The Steel Ministry was working on a road map to increase steel production to 300 million tonnes by 2030. ‘In addition, quick resolution of various big-ticket steel mills under Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code and the National Company Law Tribunal is expected to further hasten higher capacity.’ ( Hindu April 5)

India, Russia to bolster defence ties Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and her Russian counterpart General Sergey Shoigu held a bilateral meeting in Moscow to discuss ways to reinforce cooperation between their countries. ‘The talks were aimed at reinforcing defence cooperation focusing specifically on Military Technical Cooperation,’ the Defence Minister’s official Twitter handle said. Ms Sitharaman is attending the Seventh Moscow Conference on International Security (Hindu April 5).

India, Japan, US naval Cooperation Representatives of India, Japan and the United States met in New Delhi for the 9th trilateral conference on keeping sea lanes secure and functioning. The statement issued at the conclusion of their deliberations reads: ‘The officials reviewed the outcome of the Trilateral Infrastructure Working Group that met in Washington in February and agreed to continue to collaborate to promote increased connectivity in the Indo-Pacific.’ The officials explored practical steps to enhance cooperation in the areas of connectivity and infrastructure development, counter proliferation, counterterrorism, maritime security, maritime domain awareness and human assistance and disaster relief.’ (Hindu April 5).

Monsoon forecasts Encouraging The monsoon this year is likely to be normal with no prospect of a drought, according to private forecaster Skynet. Normal rainfall meant getting to within 4 per cent error. While June is likely to receive excess rainfall, there could be a deficit in July and August, the critical monsoon months and crucial for a good harvest. The official India Meteorological Department with its long-range estimate will be announced next week (Hindu, Business Line April 5).

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City lawyer investigated over deaths in suspected gas leak Two men, aged 35 and 42, died from a suspected carbon monoxide leak in a house in Edgware, North London. Five other people at the property, including two young boys, were also taken to hospital as a precaution and have been discharged from hospital. London-based lawyer, Rehka Chelvendra, who owns the property, is under investigation as the local council and police are in search of answers over the deaths of two men. Police have stated that the deaths are being treated as unexplained and post-mortem examinations are due to be carried

Rehka Chelvendra

out. It is understood that Rehka Chelvendra, who is a partner at Brightstone Law, purchased the fourbedroom house in 2011. Harrow council said, “We will be taking action

against the landlord for operating an unlicensed HMO [house in multiple occupation]”. 38-year-old Manjula Vekaria lives opposite to this property. She told the media, “It came as a great shock to everyone, they [the deceased] moved in a few weeks ago. We were all home and saw ambulances, fire engines and police cars line up. Our friend popped out to see what was happening and was told to go back inside. He said he could smell the gas in the street. I am surprised, there was so many people living there and no one smelled it. It's shocking.”

Sanskrit Language Workshop

Samskrita Bharati UK conducted their 11th annual three day residential Samskrita Conversation Camp/workshop from 30th March to 1st April 2018 over the long Easter weekend period at Beaumanor Hall in Leicestershire for the spread and reach of the ancient language Samskrita under their Speak Sanskrit campaign. The camp was attended by 52 people of all ages

and from all backgrounds. The teaching faculty included teachers from Uk and visiting Samskrita Bharati teacher Mr. Nand Kumar. The activities included besides Samskrita speaking tutorials- games, yoga, cerebration, and discussions. The delegates presented their talents in presenting Sanskrit drama, storytelling, jokes, essays and

Jury found taxi driver not guilty of sexual assault A taxi driver from Birmingham has been cleared of sexually assaulting a female passenger and locking her in his car. Muhammad Naeem was found not guilty of sexual assault and false imprisonment following a trial by a jury at the city’s crown court Mr Naeem, 35-year-old of Thistledown Road, Shard End, had always denied the charges. The court heard that the woman had rung Mercury Cars on August 11 last year and asked to be taken from her home to the Sutton Tap in South Parade. But prosecutors claimed the driver had taken her to the Sutton Sports and Social Club instead. The woman claimed that Mr Naeem had asked her to take her

top off. She had refused and had offered him £10 for the fare. Christopher Lester, prosecuting, claimed the driver had locked the doors of the vehicle, grabbed her left wrist and pulled her towards his seat. In an interview Mr Naeem had admitted mistakenly taking her to the wrong place but had denied asking her to take her top off, locking the doors or taking hold of her wrist.

songs as evening entertainment. Many participants shared their experience in Samskrita at the closing ceremony function on the final day. Samskrita Bharati UK is an affiliate of Samskrita Bharati and is working towards awareness and spread of the ancient language Samskrita and its literature for the past 15 plus years.


14th April 2018

Knives & Offensive Weapons - New Sentencing Guidelines: A Sign of the Times

Nicholas De Freitas

New sentencing guidelines relating to possession of either bladed articles and/or offensive weapons have been published and are set to take effect from the 1st June 2018.

The new guidelines include acid as a type of offensive weapon and the wording of the guidelines suggests that acid (or other corrosive materials) are seen as “a highly dangerous weapon”. The argument being that if someone has it in their possession without a legitimate reason, their intention must either be to use or threaten to use it on someone, causing that person potentially life changing injuries. According to these guidelines, there will be a significant increase in custodial sentences that are recommended as starting points for those caught in possession of an offensive weapon. One example of this is if an individual who is 18 yea rs old is found to be in possession of a bladed article whilst at school/college, they are liable to receiving a sentence of 18 months in prison. This headline figure is a starting point and does not take into account mitigating factors, but it highlights the significant increase in punishment as the current sentence is closer to 6 months. The guidelines make it clear that the minimum statutory sentence must be adhered to, except when the circumstances of the offence or that of the offender make this term ‘unjust in all of the circumstances.’ At which point the court must either propose a shorter sentence or an alternative penalty. These guidelines are not intend-

ed to change the way offenders are sentenced when they are charged with using an offensive weapon. This offence comes under wounding with/without intent, or if there was a homicide, a murder or manslaughter charge. These cases are dealt with at the Crown Court. The Sentencing Council have introduced these guidelines to deter young people from carrying weapons by sending out a very public message that if you are in possession, you are going to prison. Author, Nicholas De Freitas, is Director of Crime at Duncan Lewis’ Harrow branch. Nicholas has extensive expertise in all criminal matters, representing both private and legal aid eligible clients. As a Higher Rights Advocate, he has experience in a wide range of criminal proceedings and he has acted as Junior Counsel in a number of murder cases and complex fraud trials. For expert advice, call Nicholas on  020 3114 1150 or email him at Duncan Lewis Crime Solicitors Duncan Lewis Solicitors has a significant practice defending clients in serious and complex criminal cases, including gun and knife crime. We deal with a range of criminal offences from police station representation up to Crown Court trials, appeals and judicial review. Duncan Lewis' Crime Department has been recognised as a Top Tier and recommended criminal defence practice by Chambers UK 2018 and the Legal 500 2017 Edition. Contact us on 0333 772 0409 for expert legal advice. For our 24-hour emergency service call 033 3772 0607.

Christ's Hospital sports teacher in 'sexual subterfuge' A sports teacher at a private school offered massages to girls in his locked study as cover for sexually touching them, a court has heard. Ajaz Karim, from west London, denies a string of indecent assaults on teenage pupils at Christ's Hospital School, Sussex, from 1985 to 1993. The jury at Brighton Crown Court heard Mr Karim, 63, told police he was teaching breathing and relaxation. Prosecutor Eloise Marshall said Mr Karim left the school after complaints. She said on one occasion, Mr Karim told a girl to keep her eyes closed while he put music on and touched her naked body. The court heard he massaged the girl while she was lying face down on

the floor and then he turned her over and began to touch her inappropriately. Ms Marshall said another 14-year-old recalled how he found her alone and was "pretty certain that he was going to snog her". Another girl complained to the Horsham school when he kissed her on the lips, but he claimed it was a peck on the cheek, jurors heard. Mr Karim denied the claims during a police interview after his arrest in 2016 - he said he was teaching the girls breathing and relaxation techniques and when he did massage them it was to help them bend their legs. He is accused of nine indecent assaults and one attempted indecent

assault against six girls aged 14 to 18. The court heard how Mr Karim, who lives in Hammersmith, had also worked at Eton College,

Queen's Club, the Hurlingham Club, and has links to London branches of Champneys health spas and Credit Suisse. The trial continues.


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Asian Voice |

14th April 2018

Funny man Paul Chowdhry talks about depression and grief Reshma Trilochun We are in an era where people are encouraged to speak their minds and be expressive in the way they dress, speak or live; however, to this day, not everyone may find it easy to speak about mental health. Renown comedian, Paul Chowdhry, née Tajpaul Singh Chowdhry, suffered from depression which he terms as being an “on and off battle”. In an interview to the media, “I think sometimes people laugh at stuff within the Asian community without fully understanding some of the pressures and pain behind it. Mental health problems aren’t discussed in the Asian community really. We don’t even have a word for it. Across all those Indian languages, there isn’t one that actually has a word for depression or anxiety. You’re seen as a mad man, really. I suppose within the Asian community there is a natural stand-off between fact and fiction. Facts mean education, stability, a good job, you know. Fiction means fantasy. Because mental health is something that you can’t quantify – it’s happening in someone’s head – I think maybe Asians and Indians struggle with that abstract concept a bit.” The comedian talks about how anxiety around status, especially amongst Asian men, form the basis for mental health issues. He said, “The pressure against blokes is definitely stacked. Take education, for example. Even with private tuition, I

Paul Chowdhry

wasn’t that academic personally. That’s frowned upon. At school you’re expected to get 10 A*s even if you only did five subjects.” He believes these anxieties stem from “constant comparisons with relatives, family friends or even people you don’t know. It’s not healthy. If you get told ‘Mr Kumar’s son has got 15 GCSEs’ or ‘Mr Patel’s son is a doctor’ all the time, it’s not going to do you any good. If you’re constantly comparing yourself to other people, when do you figure out what you want for yourself?”

Understanding grief Born in 1974, Paul Chowdhry lost his mother at the age of 5. The death of his mother impacted him more as an adult. He believes grief is another issue that the Asian community needs to do something about.

Speaking about his personal experience, he said, “I think as a kid you don’t really get it anyway. You just assume they’re going to come back. My understanding was that mum’s just gone to sleep. As I’ve got older, obviously I’ve been more inclined to have the conversations I wasn’t able to back then. But like I said, the pushback from an Asian family is in that they don’t want to get caught up in all this unquantifiable emotional stuff. Because the answers aren’t straightforward, not even a little bit. Asian families don’t want uncomfortable issues. Maybe white families wear their hearts on their sleeves a bit more. Maybe we could learn from that.” Paul doesn't think the taboo or the lack of understanding of mental health is only with the Asian community. He also urges people to talk more about how they're really feeling with their loved ones. He said, “In fairness, I don’t think that the need for understanding mental health problems better is an issue specific to the Asian community, but maybe there’s some more work to be done there. I do think right now there is a readiness to over-medicate people generally. I know people who have gone to a doctor after a break-up and been given anti-depressants. I think that’s a dangerous game. I think people need to know that they have got more control – or at least the capacity to control – their own minds. And they should do that, for a start, by being able to talk more about how they’re feeling, really feeling, with their families.”

Who needs the FA? Sisters are doing it for themselves!

Hindu Sevika Samiti UK's National Khel Pratiyogita

By Ushni Devraj Hindu girls growing up have had very few, if any, role models in the sporting world that look like them or that they can identify with. UK Sport, Sport England, the FA and many other sporting organisations are constantly criticised for their lack of inclusivity and diversity but instead of complaining, Hindu Sevika Samiti UK (Samiti) decided over a decade ago to live up to their charity’s motto of Swayameva Mrugendrata “we achieve by our own efforts” by fostering and supporting activities to encourage excellence in sport and physical pursuits for and by Hindu girls and women. They truly are

the sports competition, a lot of planning and preparation was definitely needed, in order to make it into the success it turned out to be. The discipline and dedication of the volunteer sevikas is something that has always made Hindu Sevika Samiti a one of a kind experience and the Khel competition was no exception. The energy and excitement from every individual on the day was great to behold but just as important was the bonding and meeting between new and old friends. Even though it was a day of competitions, where being competitive is natural, the focus on respect, sisterhood and unity always shone through. In addition, Khel Pratiyogita promoted an

Golden year for Preston's Gujarat Hindu Society Preston’s Gujarat Hindu Society celebrates a golden milestone this year. It is half a century since the society was established and it has received Heritage Lottery Fund support to help mark the special anniversary. The aptly named Golden Milestone Lottery funded project is tracing the remarkable history of the society from its early days in Glover Street to the development of its £4m city temple and community centre. Society President Ishwer Tailor is inviting anyone who has taken part in activities at the centre, attended functions or taken photos there, to share them to help document the development of what is now very much a local and national landmark. The Hindu temple and centre on South Meadow Lane is used as a focus of worship by the Hindu community, but also used by local community and other groups for events and activities. The Temple itself is an imposing sight with magnificent carved pillars inside and out and devotional art works from India adorning its interior walls and ceiling. The society grew from small beginnings when members of the Gujarat Hindu community located in the town decided to form a society. Some had arrived in the early 1960s to work in cotton mills. There were about 80 families from Gujarat and initially they met in the home of one of its members on Glover Street. The community celebrated Hindu festivals by hiring venues

tures to ensure the building itself became a legacy for the millennium. Pillars and sacred paintings were made in India, an Indian architect employed and Indian sculptors and artists commissioned for the Temple. Society President Ishwer has been there from the early days after arriving in Preston in 1966. An early photograph shows him working with a team of volunteers in 1974 to renovate the old School. He is looking forward to the completion of the Golden Milestone Project. He said: “We wanted to capture our journey of the last 50 years so it could be a legacy for our younger generation and capture the President of Gujarat Hindu Society Preston moments of early effort Ishwer Tailor, and Secretary Dasrath Nayee how families came together and how it grew from £900 to such as the town hall, schools and a £4m project, supported not only leisure centres. By the 1970s the by people in Preston but from all Hindu community had expanded, over the UK.” For Temple volunteers with newcomers arriving from Tara Patel and Urmila Solanki the Kenya and Uganda and by the end of Temple and Centre is a key part of the 1970s the Society comprised their lives. Urmila said, “You come some 400 families. to worship here. You get more enerIn November 1997 it was time gy from coming here and you get a for more redevelopment work and a blessing from God and leave all your grant of £1.64m from the worries.” Tara agreed: “You meet all Millennium Commission was your friends, We have a luncheon secured towards the ambitious club twice a week and 50 to 60 older £3.28m project. The society moved people come and we cook for them. again, to a temporary location on We get visitors every day from West Cliff, while work was carried schools and we welcome anybody out. The Commission had encourhere. It’s 37 years since I came aged the Society to incorporate sighere.” nificant Eastern architectural fea-

Women of all ages participated in the competition

doing it for themselves! On 25th March 2018, Samiti held its 8th National Khel Pratiyogita (Sports Competition). One of the largest gatherings of Hindu girls and women for a unique occasion where females compete in Indian originated sports. Over 350 girls and women of all ages from around the UK, came together with great enthusiasm and determination to support and play sports such as Kho Kho, Ring and Kabaddi. Before

environment that encouraged girls and women to express their individual and team strength physically as well as intellectually as all the games required as much guile as they did physical prowess. In this year when women globally #PressForProgress, the sevikas from Samiti proudly demonstrated (and chanted) Shakti Ka Naam Hai, Naari Hai! (The name of strength is womanhood!).

Litter collectors clean up town

An army of determined litter collectors set off on Saturday morning with a mission - to clean up their town. It was the second time Langley councillor Madhuri Bedi who repre-

sents Labour for the Foxborough ward had arranged such an event She was joined by keen volunteers from the community including her 12-year-old son Nahal. AsianVoiceNews



ASIAN TEENAGER + DILIP HIRO Dilip Hiro wrote an article in New Society about ‘Young Asians in Britain’, and was then asked by Charles Parker to research a BBC radio documentary on the same subject. Asian Teenager was broadcast in early 1968, shortly before Enoch Powell gave his speech about ‘Rivers of Blood’. Later in 1968, Hiro worked on a TV version of the programme, and then with Philip Donnellan on a film about Wolverhampton called Strangers in a Town. Dilip Hiro is now a respected author and commentator on South Asia and the Middle East. He is back in Birmingham to reflect on his time in the city and how it helped to shape his script for the first British-Asian feature

Dilip Hiro

film, A Private Enterprise (1973). The conversation will be hosted by Shirin Hirsch (University of Wolverhampton), who has recently helped to curate ‘Many Rivers to Cross’, an exhibition at Wolverhampton Art Gallery marking 50 years since Powell’s speech. This will be preceded by a screening of The Asian Teenagers (Ivor Dunkerton, 1968).

Shakiry (Nine Night at National Theatre, Misty at Bush). Helena Bell, Artistic Director, Kali Theatre said,“I was deeply moved when I read the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948 after taking three years to draft. I was struck by its incredibly progressive, utopian vision with the uplifting message of equality for all. Seventy years on, Kali marks the moment by exploring women’s stories within the war that triggered it and subsequent human rights transgressions in conflicts around the world. It is important that the festival is framed within the hopeful messages of the Declaration: that we all have the right to freedom of expression and to participate in cultural life. I am excited that this festival offers an opportunity for audiences to experience plays by our many superb playwrights.”

Newcastle-under-Lyme attacker tries to remove woman's hijab

A man head-butted a woman and tried to remove her hijab during a racial attack on a group of five female students. Police are appealing for witnesses over the "hate crime incident" at Newcastle-under-Lyme bus station. "The women spotted the man urinating in the street before he approached them, spat at them and made racially abusive comments," Staffordshire Police said. He then attacked one of the woman and tried to remove her hijab, a spokesman said.


14th April 2018



Surina Chibber:

Sunetra Senior

Kali Theatre presents War Plays To mark the 70th year since the ground-breaking Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Kali Theatre presents a festival of compelling new plays inspired by women’s experiences of global conflict spanning Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Iraq, Tibet, Bangladesh and occupied France. The two week festival, from 8th – 19th May, features seven staged readings of full-length new plays from some of the most original voices in new theatre writing, accompanied by Speak Out Events, panel discussions with leading female journalists and human rights activists. Led by the company’s new Artistic Director Helena Bell, War Plays is Kali’s first specially commissioned season of plays. The first in a series of biennial Kali Theatre festivals, it brings together a wealth of female theatre practitioners from playwrights to directors, behind-the-scenes teams, and designer Rajha


Sgt John Hughes said: "This was a despicable act and one that left the victims understandably shaken. Thankfully, several members of the public came to their aid and intervened during the incident." The offender was described as white with blonde hair, aged in his late 20s, slim and about 6ft tall. He spoke with a local accent. Anyone with information about the attack, on 5 April, was urged to call the force on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously.

faced by thousands of overworked medical staff at a difficult time for the national healthcare system. Locum GP, and wife and mother of “We are concertedly growing the two young children, Surina, is a concept to include other areas of trailblazer in a very exciting, the NHS,” she shared with us. emerging sector of the technological field: ‘Doctorpreneurship’ as “We will be announcing the editorially popularised by a recent details very soon. My Locum article in the British Medical Manager is a site for doctors Journal (BMJ), entitled ‘Doctors designed by doctors. It’s why turn entrepreneur to try to modour growth has been so sucernise the NHS’ by Anne Gulland. cessful – it’s organic. For her - significant - part, feaWe’ve included feedtured in the BMJ piece, Surina coback from users over founded My Locum Manager, a webtime and listened to fellow professionsite which integrates all the specific als to make the paperwork of financial administraservice optition for locum GPS – general practimal. We’re tioners who are called in to stand in happy to see for regular GPS at times of emergenthis usercy, as well as in a number of other friendly model being extended to special circumstances. “Even in the new sectors.” Here, Surina went on to earlier stages of making the website, add one final overlapping merit: “as I was experiencing the very issue which led me to make this software,” a doctor, you do tend to approach sitSurina explained. Being a medical uations in quite a fear-driven way as failure is not an option. Venturing professional constantly on the go into the tech space has allowed me to with a family to look after too, life relax and be more creative, really was demanding enough for the having fun with my work.” Indeed, young physician without “the addiSurina practiced her early programtional stress” of having to complete ming skills by coding what became a disparate medical documents, from popular Star Wars app. “Making mis‘generating invoices and logging takes was more constructive. They expenses to organising patient helped me to learn and grow appointments at different We’re practices and sorting each time. It is really good pension plans and taxto have experienced this so lucky to returns’. It was eating alternative life view.” have the NHS – a Thus, Surina’s unique into personal hours. “Between the chilsystem where your departure from a traditional remedial dren, full-time work background does vocation not only and my shows emotional and entrepreneurial not interfere with physical health as exploits, sleep was access to vital equally important, but the first to be sacrihealth care. at once encapsulates the ficed! I’d be up until modern shift in profession1am.” But the temporary al values. One that sees emotime loss was worth it. tional enrichment on a par with Together with husband, Matt pragmatic stability and forwards a Bedoe, Surina can now boast a fastmore holistic idea of occupational growing, highly resourceful website, fortitude. “I think my desire to saving herself and many a delighted customer their precious recreational explore different fields was with me minutes. “My Locum Manager isn’t from a young age,” Surina concluded. just an online accountant, but also “I grew up being taught: if there is no helps manage the day-to-day admin way there, you can make your own in a doctor’s life. It allows you to have all your financial data collected over time, whereby with the press of a button, you have all you need to sort your taxes.” The site has been voted number 1 in ‘Top Medical Websites for GPs’ and has enjoyed rewarding partnerships with reputable companies such as Doctify and Medisave. *** “Enthusiastic industry support has certainly been a highlight,” Surina commented. “That and seeing my children so proud of their mum. They are excited whenever My Locum Manager is mentioned, and when my husband and I were designing what we call the ‘wireframes’, an outline for the software, they were saying, ‘wow, you’re really good at drawing graphs!’ Those moments of family appreciation and togetherness have been wonderful.” Surina’s organisational website has also come full circle in a wider sense. Once stretching her already tested time as an NHS professional attempting anxiously to navigate an intimidating, new digital world, she is today contributing to alleviating the immense pressure

path. In the tech-age, I’ve had access to the appropriate contemporary equipment, and with my husband, Matt, being quite tech-savvy, here we are! I feel all my different roles, including being a mother, are really complementing each other, making me a highly developed person.” It seems as if having a likeminded life partner really helped you. Can you give more comment? Yes, it does. Matt is a very hands-on sort of husband and helped make sure my family commitments never had to take a back-seat. As well as helping me visualise and convey what I wanted to with the website, he is also a doctor by trade so that’s doubly reassuring.

Can anyone use your website – for example freelancers of different professional backgrounds? We want a model that will work excellently within the health sector, reinforcing the software. Then, yes, it would be great to adapt it out. It’s actually quite flexible in its current form. It can help a young doctor who wants to take out a mortgage by accurately providing financial data. If you’re a busy mother, it automatically helps you track your hours. How did you make My Locum Manager User-friendly? With the main goal being simplicity and usability. If I couldn’t complete a task on the site quickly, I would just start over. We didn’t want fancy features that might have a knock-on effect on easy use. Problem-solving is certainly an important skill. However, decreasing the burden on NHS staff can be a two-pronged strategy. Do you have an observation of what could be done by the government to help? We’re so lucky to have the NHS – a system where your background does not interfere with access to vital health care. We need to work hard to protect this. There is some reform such as the NHS clinical innovation scheme, but we’re still gravely underfunded. Another helpful idea here might be to cut expensive consultancy intervention, and simply listen to doctors on the ground to improve the system and decide the distribution of funds. Finally, what’s your advice to others who are in full-time work who want to make a bigger change? Make sure your idea is driven by happiness, not the desire to make a huge amount of money. Passion is far better a measure of success; focus on making a product that’s useful for people; don’t let distractions and setbacks deter you; it’s alright to start small. A couple of hours a day, for a project, can turn into six hours then whole days; finally, surround yourself with supportive people. You need positivity. W: T: @dr_Surina



Asian Voice | AsianVoiceNews

14th April 2018


Celebrate the festival of Vaisakhi

Reshma Trilochun

14th April marks the holy festival of Vaisakhi across the globe, commemorating the important religious event in Sikhism. Vaisakhi is of utmost significance and value to followers of the Sikh faith, as it recognises the birth of Guru Gobind Singh’s commemorates the year, 1699, when Guru Gobind Singh founded the order of the Khalsa. Guru Gobind Singh was a spiritual leader, warrior, poet and a philosopher. Khalsa and the Panj Pyare As per Sikh beliefs, Guru Gobind Singh called all Sikhs to the Indian city of Anandpur Sahib, in Punjab, on 14th April 1699. After the arrival of everyone at the gathering, Guru Gobind Singh asked all the attendees to uphold their faith and preserve the religion. He is then said to have lifted his sword and asked the crowd to step forward if they were prepared to die for their faith. Five men stepped forward and they were taken into a tent separately. After a short while, Guru Gobind Singh re-emerged from the tent with a bloodied sword, along with the five men behind him who were dressed in blue garments. Guru Gobind Singh

addressed the five men as the “Panj Pyare”, meaning the Five Beloved Ones. The five men were baptised and to this day, they are known as the first members of the Khalsa. The Guru said that the Panj Pyare would be an embodiment of himself. He said, “Where there are Panj Pyare, there I am. When the Five meet, they are the holiest of the holy.” Vaisakhi is also an important day for farmers and agriculture. Farmers show their gratitude for the harvest and hope for another good year. In Punjab, Vaisakhi is also a time to celebrate spring harvest and vegetation.

Vaisakhi in the UK The occasion is celebrated with great gusto in the UK as well. On 28th April,

Celebrations in Huddersfield

Guru Gobind Singh with the Panj Pyare

Vaisakhi celebrations will be held at Trafalgar Square in London, between 1pm- 6pm. The event, which is free to enter, will have live stage performances, kirtan and spiritual music, traditional food and drinks as well as langar, community groups and charities, turban tying, Punjabi retail, fun kids’ activities, plus much more. There will be several other celebrations marking Vaisakhi in Britain. Most celebrations will have Sikhs commemorating the day with processions, also known as “nagar kirtan”. A nagar kirtan will be led by five men representing the Panj Pyare, followed by performers and dhol players.

IIW (Inspiring Indian Women) celebrates Vaisakhi in London On 8th April, pre-Vaisakhi celebrations were held to highlight the need for peace and harmony among neighbouring nations – India and Pakistan, just a week before the Commonwealth Summit in London. The event was also attended by few ladies from Pakistan. When Bengalis, Maharashtrians, Gujarati’s, Assamese, Haryanvi's, U.P, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Goa, Maharashtra Jains, Christians, Hindus, Muslims all came together for this Baishakhi

Celebration on 8th April at Siddhashram Shakti Centre, Harrow. Ladies from as far as Wimbledon, Southall, Uxbridge, Central London to East London, Wembley , Neasden and various far off places took out time and joined the celebrations When IIW decided to celebrate Vaisakhi, the ladies jumped at the idea

and the practice to perform Giddha and shopping for parande and patiyala started in full swing. The all Veg Punjabi cuisines from Dal Makhani, Kadhi chawal, Biryani, Jilebiyan, Dahi Bhalle, Makai ka saag, Chole Bhature, Jal Jeera Water, Veg Korma, Chane ki Daal and much more. The kids had fruit cream, Popcorn, chips.

IIW celebrating Vaisakhi

Telugu Association of London Ugadi Celebrations 2018 Telugu Association of London (TAL) has celebrated its 14th Ugadi Celebrations in Nakshatra Hall, Feltham, London on 7th of April 2018 in a grand way with hundreds of Telugu families living in and around London.

The celebrations started with a Carnatic Music Vocal presentation by TAL Culture Centre (TCC) music students and continued with a variety of dances and songs. Carnatic vocal music by TCC Music teacher Veena Pani, Violin by Megana, dance sequences by Bharathi Sudanugunta and fusion dance by Mrudula & Srilatha duo have mesmerised the audience. The venue

Kuchipudi and Odissi Jugalbandi by Aishwarya and Mariyam

was filled with festive celebrations with different acts, traditional and cine music and dance. Everyone attending the event was treated with traditional Ugadi Pachadi and delicious food. The TAL Youth wing team has performed another stunning and amazing dance which did stood as the performance of the day while prime attraction of this show was young achiever Dr. Tejaswini Manogna, Bharatanatyam dancer, Carnatic vocalist and a medal-winning NCC cadet has wowed the audience with her multi talent dance skills and won the hearts of all audience. She has praised the work TAL is doing in preserving and

promoting Telugu Culture in the UK. As TAL’s yearly tradition to felicitate a Telugu Person who has spent his life in contributing to the community or Telugu language in the UK with a Lifetime Achievement Award, this year our Life Time Award is given to Dr. Achyutha Ramarao who is a literary exponent and writer. Our chief guest and Member of Parliament Mrs. Seema Malhotra, have unveiled out annual magazine “Maa Telugu” which was edited and composed by Mrs. Hema Macherla. Mrs. Malhotra has praised TAL’s contribution towards to the community and passing on Telugu language to younger generation.

Unity of the community (supported by Seema Malhotra Member of Parliament)

UK AsianVoiceNews


Asian Voice |

Niraj Dattani, Nish Patel and Aneka Shah-Levy: Labour’s vibrant candidates for Kenton East – Harrow

Harrow Labour Party is fielding young and dynamic team with wealth of experience of working and delivering for the residents and businesses in Kenton East. They have already delivered marked improvement in Kenton through various programmes such as road and pavement improvements, dealing with flytipping and issues of congestion, crime and road safety. Labour party maintains that rackless Tory government cuts have devastated local services and its only Labour Party that will protect local communities like those in Kenton East and that is why it’s critical to vote for Labour Party candidates on 3 rd May. Niraj Dattani: Harrow has been home for Niraj for most of his life. Niraj works for a social enterprise which empowers communities to obtain support and funding for their local priorities. Niraj says Kenton East needs a Council that understands the issue residents face every-

to protect services for the young and older people devastated by brutal cuts by Tory government. Nish will demand extra street cleaning and heavy fines on fly trippers, support schools and protect police to reduce crime in Harrow. Aneka Shah-Levy: Born in Harrow Aneka has lived, worked and studied in the area all her life. She currently work for a local charity based in Kenton and works closely with volunteers and local authorities. Nish Patel, Niraj Dattani and Aneka Shah-Levy Aneka feels very privileged as her job enables her to meet day and will work to deal with fight and work with local community and fly-tipping and tackle the rogue faith groups. She has been elected as landlords. As local Councillor Niraj a Councillor for Kenton East since will fight for priorities of local com2014 and hopes to continue to serve munities. Kenton’s residents over the coming Nish Patel: As a local businessyears to improve quality of life and man Nish understands the support local environment. She’s dedicated small businesses need. He wants to to Labour’s vision of social justice, see Harrow’s economic growth fairness and is totally committed to through active work with our traders working with all our diverse and businesses. Labour is offering a Community of Kenton East. clear vision for Harrow and will fight

1 in 4 black voters aren’t registered to vote Hindu Council UK has teamed up with other organisations that support black and ethnic minority communities to encourage registration and highlight that you can quickly register in five minutes while waiting for the kettle to boil or running a bath. The Electoral Commission estimates that 24% of black voters in the UK are not registered, as nearly half of England gets set to go to the polls for local elections on 3rd May 2018. The Commission’s brand new campaign “Got 5?” is encouraging people to register online at: before the 17th April deadline if they have local elections in their area. It’s also estimates that 20% of Asian voters aren’t registered to vote, whilst nearly a quarter (23%) of electors with mixed ethnicity are not yet registered. of Hartley, Head Emma Campaigns at the Electoral Commission, said: “With many local authorities across England and London holding local elections in May it’s vital that people register

to vote before the 17th April deadline. We’re keen to see people using the time that may otherwise be wasted, like waiting for a bus, to go online and complete a form in five minutes. It’s quick, simple and real-

ly important.” Director Jagatia, Sanjay Secretary General of the Hindu Council UK said: “Time is running out. With only a few days to go time is running out to make sure you can take part in the local elections. These elections are an opportunity to make your voice heard and have a say on who represents you on issues that directly affect day-to-day life here in the UK. But if you’re not registered by 17 April, you won’t be

able to vote.” People can find out if they have elections in their area on the Commission’s Your Vote Matters website. Local government elections select councillors, who are responsible for making decisions on running services in your local area. To vote in local council elections a person must be registered to vote, 18 years or over on polling day and also be one of the following: l a British citizen, a q u a l i f y i n g Commonwealth citizen, or a citizen of the European Union l resident in the UK l not be subject to any legal incapacity to vote If you were eligible to vote in last year’s general election and your details have not changed, you will still be registered to vote. More information on voting in the local elections can be found on the Commission’s Your website: Matters Vote https://www.yourvotematters.

Sajid Javid slams Camden Council’s Chalcots handling During a campaign visit to Camden, the Communities and Housing Secretary, Sajid Javid denounced Camden Council's handling of the Chalcots Estate evacuation, while also stating that the council needed to be transparent about the government support they want. Sajid Javid said, “It's important to remember there were multiple fire safety failures, including 1,000 fire doors that were

found inadequate. That's a failing of the local council. For a long time the council wanted to deny any responsibility for it, and that didn't help build local confidence. People have the right to feel safe, and they don't. It's the council job, and they haven't been up to it.” He further said, “If [councils] need financial support, then they should approach the government and we will give them the support they need. Some councils need

to do a better job, get their act together and tell us what they need, but we won't be turning any council away if they need financial flexibilities. What I see across the county is Conservative councils that provide better frontline services for lower taxes. What you see in Camden in a typical Labour administration that has no idea how to manage money. They would rather cut frontline services than finding savings and proper efficiencies.”

Sajid Javid


14th April 2018

Corbyn blasts Tories over Grenfell during Labour election launch As Jeremy Corbyn looks to put behind him the dispute over Labour antisemitism behind him, he intends on taking hold of Kensington and Chelsea- which has been under Tory control since 1964, as well as other traditional Tory councils in London in the upcoming local elections in May. While he launched Labour's local election campaign in London, he attacked the Tory's funding cuts and said that the party's record on policing and crime has been a “reckless failure”. He also accused the Conservative politicians as being “heartless and hopeless” for failing the survivors of the fire at the Grenfell tower. The Labour leader was joined at the event by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and the Kensington MP, Emma Dent Coad. Corbyn stated, “The brutal and inescapable truth is that the fire simply would not have happened if the occupants had been

Jeremy Corbyn

wealthy. In the immediate aftermath of the fire came the solemn pledges to the families of the bereaved and those made homeless – that they would be rehoused in the borough. Yet almost a year on families are still living in emergency accommodation. The residents of Grenfell have been forced to experience the double whammy of a heartless Tory government and a hopeless Conservative council.” Regarding funding cuts by the Tories, Corbyn said, “You can't have security on the cheap and cuts have consequences. Too many communities are living with those consequences.

Local election candidate beaten while canvassing in East London

Abdullah Al Mamun, a local election candidate for independent party Aspire in Tower Hamlets, was beaten over the head with a metal pole by a gang while he was out canvassing in East London. The candidate claims he thought he "was going to die”. The candidate was left with a major wound to his head that required 10 stitches. Al Mamum said, “I thought I was going to die. I felt that my head had split in two with the blood pouring out. I have been a dedicated community worker all my life. I entered politics so that I could continue to help people. I never dreamed that for my community work and public service I would be attacked.” He further added, “I call on all politicians and political parties to ask

their supporters to behave respectfully and ethically.” Regarding this incident, a Met Police spokesman said, “We were called to Reardon House, Reardon Street, at 5.30pm on Friday following reports of an assault. Officers attended and a man in his thirties was found with a head injury. He was taken by London Ambulance Service to an east London hospital. No arrests have been made.”

Sheffield City Council is "turning a blind eye" to child sexual exploitation despite the abuse scandal in nearby Rotherham, a survivors' charity says. Kathryn Kelwick, of Rotherham-based Swinton Lock Centre, said: "We are getting more and more families from Sheffield coming to us for help." The centre's manager is whistleblower Jayne Senior, who first revealed child sex abuse in

Rotherham. The council said: "We do everything we can to keep our young people safe." Jayne Ludlam, Executive Director of People for the city council, said: "We take any concerns raised to us very seriously and will always listen." BBC Radio Sheffield has spoken to a woman, who cannot be identified, who alleges that her daughters have been sexually exploited and abused whilst in the care of Sheffield City Council.

Abdullah Al Mamun was attacked while canvassing in East London

Sheffield City Council turns 'blind eye' to child sex abuse



Asian Voice | 14th April 2018

After IndiGo, Jet Airways too pull out Air India bid

Jet Airways became the latest major Indian airline to pull out a bid for debtladen national carrier Air India in a new blow to the government's privatisation plans. The announcement came just days after rival IndiGo pulled out of the race to acquire Air India's operations meaning the government now has no clear front-runner in the sale campaign. "We welcome the government move to privatise Air India. It is a bold step," Jet Airways' deputy chief executive, Amit Agarwal said in a statement. "However, considering the terms of offer in the information memorandum and based on our review, we are not participating in the process," he added. Once the country's monopoly airline, Air India has slowly lost market share to new low-cost private players in one of the world's fastestgrowing airline markets. Air India ran losses for

nearly a decade after a botched merger in 2007 and has debts of around $7.67 billion according to government figures. IndiGo pulls out Earlier, low-cost carrier IndiGo has withdrawn from bid under the current terms of sale. IndiGo president Aditya Ghosh said, “From day one, IndiGo has expressed its interest primarily in the acquisition of AI's international operations and AI Express. However, that option is not available under the government's current plans for AI. Also, as we have communicated before, we do not believe that we have the capability to take on the task of acquiring and suc-

cessfully turning around all of AI's airline operations.” When the government had decided to divest in AI in last June, IndiGo was the first to show interest in the international flights of AI and AI Express. Aviation Ministry brass said they won't be able to comment on this development or on whether the terms of AI sale may be changed as the divestment “process is on”. Until now, IndiGo, TataSingapore Airlines joint venture Vistara, and an unnamed foreign player have expressed interest in AI, while others like Jet and Qatar Airways were learnt to be evaluating the situation. IndiGo's latest move will not affect its plans to

start international medium-and-long flights as the promoters had made it clear last year that they will do so “with or without” AI. Although, they admitted that expanding wings in distant markets without AI will take much longer. The government's terms of sale offer to divest its 76 per cent stake in AI. IndiGo co-promoter Rakesh Gangwal had said last year, “A joint venture or joint ownership with the government is at best a very, very difficult proposition... Government has owned and managed AI for more than 50 years. They are looking to divest in it... From our perspective as a corporate entity, we would not go down a path where there would be a JV or even a minority, majority stake which the government would own. Maybe (it's) a good model, but we cannot bring value to that proposition.”

The deal to merge European assets with Thyssenkrupp and create a £13.3 billion a year industry giant, was first announced in last September. It was seen as a defensive move by

both, Tata and Thyssenkrupp in the face of fierce competition from Chinese steelmakers. It had, however, been expected that the new company - which will be called Thyssenkrupp Tata Steel, would eventually be separated off from the two parent businesses, either through a sale or a flotation. Tata was assumed

to be using the mega-merger in an effort to draw a line under its foray into the European steel sector, which has caused it to incur huge losses and writedowns. Thyssenkrupp however, had been understood to be looking to focus more on its profitable capital goods operations. Sources however, said, “Thyssenkrupp is looking to exit the steel sector while Tata is looking to stay and grow.”

cient, the system would be in addition to paper currency and will not entirely replace banknotes. The notification has, needless to say, triggered panic-selling among Bitcoin traders. Crypto-trading platforms like Unocoin and CoinSecure are trying to pacify traders on the platform. “There has been panicselling to some extent, so the situation is bad. We are talking to investors but nothing

concrete has been decided yet,” said Unocoin cofounder and CEO Sathvik Vishwanath. RBI deputy governor BP Kanungo said, “Digital tokens issued by private parties have been getting international attention for quite some time because of the speculative value. While the regulatory responses are not uniform, it is universally felt that they (cryptocurrencies) could seriously undermine the anti-money laundering and financial action task force framework, adversely impact market integrity and capital controls and, if they grow, they can endanger financial stability. Cofounder of Nuoa blockchain-powered bank for

cryptocurrencies, Varun Deshpande said in the future, no bank or exchange in India can provide a way to convert Bitcoins into 'fiat' or vice versa. “Still, holding your Bitcoins or trading them isn't illegal in any way whatsoever,” he said. He said cryptocurrencies in future will have sufficient depth even if they cannot be converted into rupees. “We believe that this is a huge misstep which needs serious reconsideration. But this couldn't stop crypto believers from holding their crypto currencies since, going forward, it would enable access to global services and resources irrespective of whether you can liquidate them into fiat.”

Tata Steel 'eyeing' majority stake in venture with Thyssenkrupp

Tata Steel is said to be considering taking a majority stake in its venture with Germany's Thyssenkrupp. According to a report, the Indian steel major may be open to taking a larger portion of the business than the 50 per cent stake it will receive under the joint venture, once the entity is publicly listed. This will depend on how well its operations are doing in India and market conditions at the time of the float.

RBI bars banks from crypto services, plans e-currency

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has announced a major crackdown on cryptocurrencies, even as it unveiled plans to create its own digital currency. The value of Bitcoin in India fell from Rs 4,60,000 to Rs 3,50,000 instantly after the announcement. In its first policy for FY19, the RBI said banks and other regulated entities cannot provide services to users, holders, and traders of cryptocurrencies. Also, the apex bank said a panel would submit a report by June on the desirability and feasibility of introducing a virtual currency backed by the government. While the RBI is looking at digital currencies for cutting costs of paper and making transactions more effi-


Namal Nawana appointed as new CEO of Smith & Nephew The global medical technology business, Smith & Nephew plc has announced that Australian industry veteran, Namal Nawana will be replacing Olivier Bohuon as the Chief Executive Officer after the latter retires. Nawana will be appointed to the Board as an Executive Director on 7th May 2018. Chairman of Smith & Nephew, Roberto Quarta said, “In Namal, I am delighted that we have secured an exceptional new chief executive with a proven record within the medical device industry. He has the experience as a CEO of a major listed com-

Namal Nawana pany in the healthcare sector, and has demonstrated that he can energise businesses to deliver better performance and greater value to shareholders. We are looking forward to him joining our Board and driving Smith & Nephew to the next level of success.”

Vadodara company, its directors booked for fraud

The Central Bureau of Investigation has registered a cheating case against Vadodara-based Diamond Power Infrastructure Limited (DPIL) and its directors for allegedly cheating 11 banks to the tune of £265.4 million. The loan was declared a non-performing asset in 2016-17. The agency is conducting searches on the premises of the company and its functionaries. The CBI has alleged that DPIL, promoted by S.N. Bhatnagar and his sons Amit and Sumit Bhatnagar, indulged in the alleged cheating. The company is into manufacturing of cables and other electrical equipment. “It is alleged that DPIL, through its management, fraudulently availed credit facilities from a consortium of 11 Banks since 2008, leaving behind an outstanding debit of £265.44 million as on June 29, 2016,” said an official. The company and its directors managed to get the term loans and credit facilities, in spite of the fact that they were already appearing in the RBI’s defaulters list and ECGC Caution List at the time of initial sanction of credit limits by the consortium, it

S.N. Bhatnagar 2008, Axis Bank was the lead bank for the term loan and Bank of India was the lead bank for cash credit limits. It is alleged that the company, with the active connivance of officials from various banks managed to get enhancement in credit facilities. In 2011, when DPIL had projected turnover of £219.76 million for the year 2012, whereas the actual turnover was £126.76 million only for 2011. According to the CBI, the company had been submitting false stock statements to the lead bank by treating receivables more than 180 days (non-current asset) as less than 180 days (current asset) to get more drawing power in their cash credit accounts.

The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) allowed lenders to proceed with selling some assets of Anil Ambani’s Reliance Communications (RCom) to Reliance Jio Infocomm(Jio), but ordered that the proceeds be held in an escrow account until it decides on a dispute with a minority shareholder. The latest decision marks a partial victory for RCom a day after Supreme Court vacated a separate

order, freezing the deal, in a case filed by the Indian unit of Ericsson AB. The NCLAT said that the asset sale can only close after a judgment is reached on a dispute with HSBC Daisy Investments (Mauritius) Ltd. The twin orders bring RCom a step nearer to completing the sale of its airwaves, towers and fiber assets to Reliance Jio, controlled by Anil’s older brother Mukesh Ambani.

is alleged. At the time of formation of consortium in

Way cleared for RComJio deal, with riders




There are many types of investors, each with his or her own idiosyncrasies. Each with their own levels of comfort, and each with varying need for control. There are even those who will only buy a particular property according to the time you offer it to them, and those who will only buy certain house or flat numbers.

Suresh Vagjiani

Sow & Reap London Property Investment

From an investment point, there are two types of investors: those who buy and keep, and those who wish to enter and exit. Those who wish to keep can be divided into segments, depending on how long they wish to stay in the deal. If they don’t decide, then it will be the length of time they stay alive which will govern how long they hold the investment for, after all everything has a time limit. It can be argued

that there’s little point in buying a freehold when your own body is a leasehold. There is very underutilised tax incentive, called entrepreneurs relief, which means the investor will only end up paying 10% on any property gains they make. For this to work one needs to purchase the asset in a company, and then sell the company shares rather than the asset. There are other conditions which need to be satisfied in order for this relief to kick in, but they are not prohibitive. There are also those who keep amassing assets year after year rain or shine, they don’t sell. The question may be asked, what is the best way? Should one have a fixed strategy or should one be flexible?

AGONY AGENT IS HERE TO HELP! Q: My current tenant has given notice and I would like to get my property ready for students. Can I just let it out as it is? A: This depends on many things, including the location and condition of your property. What I have learnt over the years when dealing with student lets, is that many people think that students do not care about the location and condition of the property. First thing to do is to get these ideas out of your head as in most cases this is simply not true.

Whilst most students may have limited budgets, this doesn’t mean they’ll live anywhere for cheap rents. They are looking for somewhere within a couple of miles of their University, so it’s very important that your property is located in the right location and is within walking distance or an easy commute to the Uni. You will also find students now expect more, including properties with better quality furnishings. Don’t scrimp with cheap furnishings, as it will need

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to withstand wear and tear, and in the long run you could end up paying out for replacements. It’s a myth that students don’t mind living in grotty properties. Students today look for a comfortable place that they will enjoy living in. It is worth knowing that students may not ask for the best of furnishings, however, their parents most certainly will if they are asked to be a guarantor for the rent. There is a growing demand for quality

Asian Voice |


14th April 2018

Recently, I had a request for a deal to be entered and exited. However, the deal itself does not suit this strategy. You may make a good slice of profit, but you will miss the cake and the cream. The property in question is in one of the lowest areas of a location which itself is reasonably affluent and has increased in recent years. Therefore, there is a lot of pressure from all sides for its upliftment as it seems to be the last spot left in the area. This may take perhaps three to five years to mature. I believe the property itself can be developed and sold on to give a healthy profit. However, to optimise the deal my feeling is you would need to go with the current of what the deal accommodation which means that more and more students are willing to pay market rents to enjoy better quality properties. If your property has changed into an HMO and obtained a licence from the council, then the property will have undergone inspection to ensure it has reached a certain standard. This will draw in students looking for good-quality housing, resulting in higher rents. Another question that I am asked is if student properties are too much trouble? Again, most students are decent, hardworking people who have

demands rather than to impose one’s own will or ‘strategy’ on the deal. Rather than purchasing and selling the property, it would be best to capitalise on its cash flow, and then look to refinance the deal with a view of taking out all your original capital from the deal, and holding the asset. This would potentially give the investor a healthy cash flow for perhaps the rest of his or her life. been judged on the actions of the few. So, while there are some badly behaved students, most students today have too much invested in their education to cause problems for their landlord or their neighbours. Additionally, most students sign up for a year-long tenancy agreement, meaning consistent rent – even when they’re not residing in the property during the summer months.

When the area matures sufficiently, which it is set to do, at this point one could consider an exit. If, however, the property is producing a healthy income, it begs the questions as to why one should sell. Although currently there is a good tax incentive for buying and selling, one must be careful to ensure the tail does not wag the dog; either from a tax perspective or one’s own rigid strategy.

If you need help tailoring your property to the student market, get in touch with me at the office for a chat and pointers on improving the let-ability of your property. Richard Bond Lettings Manager Sow & Reap

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Asian Voice | 14th April 2018

Warrants issued against Choksi, Nirav Modi

Consultant Editor Financial Voice Alpesh Patel Dear Financial Voice Reader, The secret to wealth is to overcome your own mind. When I wrote my first book, there was a very good reason I called it ‘The Mind of a Trader’. There are many biases that influence our reasoning. Popular literature recognizes 53 different types of cognitive biases; however, four of them are particularly important and significantly influence risk calculations and strategic decision making. These cognitive biases are: Prior hypotheses and focusing on limited target- this happens when a decision maker brings hypothesis and personal beliefs into decision-making process without previously inspecting the relevant data. Consequently, the decision-maker tends to overlook the information and evidence that can prove the opposite of what he thinks. This is a major problem for traders because instead of being detached and dispassionate when looking at data, they let their pre-existing trades and losses affect their future decisions. Exposure to limited alternatives- in the situation when data is incomplete, decision makers tend to focus on limited numbers of alternatives because they usually fill in the missing data with intuition instead of trying to get additional information. Traders do trades they shouldn’t. Instead of waiting for high probability trades, instead they dive in impatiently. Insensitivity to outcome probabilities- if a manager is influenced more by the value of possible outcomes then by the magnitude of probabilities, he/she will tend to make very risky and hazardous decisions that are not based on statistical calculations of probabilities. Here the trader thinks how much money he will make, not how likely he is to make it. In trading, all we are trying to do is make small incremental gains, not huge windfalls. In trading we need high probability trades. Illusion of manageability- when decision-makers intuitively believe that success is more probable than what statistical models predicted they can become overly optimistic. Consequently, they tend to overlook risks and develop illusion of control in uncontrollable situations. In addition, in these situations, they irrationally think that they can and will solve every possible problem that arose as a result of their decisions. When it comes to trading, it is vitally important to be aware of the biases which inflict everyone. Overcome this, not just in investing but in life, and you will have the roots of success. The reason so few people are successful in life, who reach the pinnacle, is because humans are not made to be successful. We are made for the grind, eat, feed, survive, not thrive, but survive. So it takes extra effort to be successful. The mind is the biggest hurdle, not others, but ourselves. Alpesh B Patel For a free online trading



Cognizant Technology told to pay £42 mn tax Madras High Court has ordered Cognizant Technology Solutions to pay 15 per cent of the demanded amount in its £280 million tax dispute with the IT Department. In a bid to facilitate the payment, the court ordered unfreezing of the company bank account with JP Morgan in Mumbai. Its accounts with other banks will, however, remain frozen. The HC bench said, “There shall be an order of an interim stay on the income tax proceedings, subject to the condition that Cognizant pays 15 per cent of the tax demanded, and furnishes a bank guarantee or security by way of fixed deposit for the remaining tax demanded.”


It added, “For proper compliance to the condition, the attachment of bank account with JP Morgan Chase Bank, Mumbai, shall stand lifted forthwith. However, the attachment in respect of other banks such as SBI, Deutsche, Corporation, and HDFC Bank shall continue till the compliance of the direction. Similarly, the attachment of nine bank deposits to the tune of £265 million shall continue subject to the lien being created for remaining amount of taxes.” The interim direction was passed by Justice TS Sivaganam on a plea moved by Cognizant assailing the tax demand and the freezing of its 68 bank accounts.

As troubles mount for celebrity designer Nirav Modi and uncle Mehul Choksi, a Mumbai court issued non-bailable warrants against the two millionaires who have refused to return to the country to face the probe in the Punjab National Bank scam. The arrest warrants were issued at the request of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), a vital part of the multi-agency crackdown on the businessmen. Officials of the agency are currently questioning authorities at overseas branches of Indian banks that issued loans to companies owned by the two jewellers against bank guarantees. The government told the parliament this week that a request for Nirav Modi's provisional arrest had been sent to Hong

Mehul Choksi and uncle Nirav Modi

Kong on March 23. The Narendra Modi-led government had canceled passports of the two diamond merchants after the CBI filed the first case in February for illegally getting guarantee letters from Punjab National Bank officials. Nirav Modi, his wife, brother, and uncle Mehul allegedly worked with bank officials to illegally obtain Letters of Undertaking that were cashed overseas from

different banks. All of them left the country in the first week of January, long before the government and the state-run bank detected the fraud that amounts up to £1.27 billion. Over the month, government agencies have temporarily seized properties worth millions that led them to shut down their outlets in several parts of the country. The centre has also drawn up a law to deal

with such cases of fugitive economic offenders that empowers the government to confiscate all assets of absconding fraudsters and loan defaulters to recover dues. Meanwhile, India has asked authorities in Hong Kong to arrest Modi. Whereabouts of him and Choksi have been officially unknown since investigation began in February. Junior Foreign Minister VK Singh said, “The ministry has sought the provisional arrest of Nirav Deepak Modi by the government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, People's Republic of China.” Passports of both the absconding men have been revoked. Singh said India had submitted the request for Modi's arrest to Hong Kong on March 23.

ICICI bank board divided over Chanda Kochhar's future ICICI Bank board is currently divided over whether to ask Chief Executive Officer Chanda Kochhar to step down as government agencies investigate allegations of impropriety over loans made to Videocon group. At least some outside directors are opposed to Kochhar continuing in her role, said sources. The board of India's secondlargest private sector bank may meet soon to consider its next course of action. Kochhar's current tenure is set to end on March 31, 2019. ICICI's board, which consists of 12 members, reviewed credit approval processes and found them to be robust. Headed by Chairman MK Sharma, the board said there was “no question” of any quid pro quo, nepotism or conflict of

interest and expressed “full faith and confidence” in Kochhar, a March 28 filing said. The board includes six independent directors, including the bank chairman and head of state-owned Life Insurance Corporation of India, which owns 9.4 per cent stake. The board also includes a government nominee and five executive directors from ICICI. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) recently began a preliminary inquiry into an alleged nexus between Videocon Chairman Venugopal Dhoot and Kochhar's husband. A preliminary inquiry is the first

Chanda Kochhar

step to assess allegations of wrongdoing. Gaurang Shah, head investment strategist at Geojit Financial Services Ltd. Said, “If the CEO has to step down, the shares might see a knee-jerk fall and then recover from there on. Allegations are regarding transactions which have happened in the past and the market has already priced in most of

RBI stalls bonuses of top private bank CEOs The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is delaying year-end bonuses to the heads of top private banks as it questions the size of the payouts citing the lenders' performance issues. Chief Executive Officers at HDFC Bank and Axis Bank are among those who are yet to receive bonuses for the financial year ended March 31, 2017. The RBI hasn't signed off on proposed payments, sources said. ICICI's board had approved a bonus of £220,000 for CEO Chanda Kochhar, while Axis' Shikha Sharma was set to receive £135,000, and HDFC's Aditya Puri, £290,000. Private banks have had it tough in the past year, as they remained engulfed with severe cases

of hidden bad loans and alleged lapses in corporate governance. Rising defaults

general elections next year. Ashutosh Kumar Mishra, a Mumbai-based banking analyst at Reliance Securities Ltd said, “We have never noticed such delay in approving the payouts, but then we haven't seen a year in which so many skeletons were brought out of the closet - from underreporting of bad loans to serious governance issues.” In the year ended March 2017, an RBI audit showed Axis Shikha Sharma and Aditya Puri Bank hadn't disclosed have forced the public's bad loans worth about £560 patience to the edge, million. Even HDFC reportprompting pressure on ed a divergence and ICICI Prime Minister Narendra said it isn't required to make Modi to act against perpedisclosures on the topic trators and reinforce his even as provisions for bad anti-graft image before the loans climbed.

the risks that could come from it.” Kochhar’s brother-in-law detained The CBI stopped Chanda Kochhar’s brotherin-law Rajiv Kochhar at Mumbai airport as the agency wanted to question him in connection with its preliminary enquiry (PE) against his brother Deepak Kochhar and Videocon chairman Venugopal Dhoot. Kochhar was intercepted before his departure for a Southeast Asian destination and brought to the agency’s office and examined. Although he was later allowed to leave, sources said he was asked to report for another round of examination. Investigators have also kept his mobile phone and passport.

Shikha to cut tenure by 30 months Axis Bank chief Shikha Sharma, the longest serving woman CEO in the financial sector, will step down in December 2018 – two-anda-half years before her term was due to end. The announcement came after the RBI raised questions on the bank board’s proposal to appoint her for a fourth term from July 2018. On December 8, 2017, the board had informed the RBI of its decision to reappoint Sharma as MD and CEO for three more years from June 1, 2018. However, in a surprise announcement, Axis Bank said that Sharma, “had requested the board to reconsider the period of her reappointment as the managing director and CEO of the bank to be revised from June 1, 2018 up to December 31, 2018".

WORLD AsianVoiceNews


Asian Voice | 14th April 2018




Over 100 injured in Dawood, Saeed among 139 Pakistanis figure in UN terror list Dhaka University clashes

NEW DELHI: As many as 139 Pakistanis figure in the updated list of people designated as 'terrorists' by the The United Nations Security Council's (UNSC). Many of the terrorists are from the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and the Jaish-eMohammed (JeM). These 139 are identified as individuals who have lived in Pakistan or have operated from the country or have been associated with groups that used Pakistani territory for their operations. Included in the list are fugitive gangster Dawood Ibrahim and 26/11 Mumbai terror mastermind Hafiz Saeed. According to UN, Dawood has held several Pakistani passports issued in Rawalpindi and Karachi. It also said that he owns a “palatial bungalow in the

hilly area of Noorabad, Karachi.” Saeed, also a founder of LeT, is joined on the list by Haji Mohammed Yahya Mujahid, LeT's 'media contact', and two people known as his deputies, Abdul Salaam and Zafar Iqbal. All three are also wanted by Interpol. The UNSC has listed LeT as well as its various affiliates, including alMansoorian, Paasban-iKashmir, Paasban-i-Ahle Hadith, Jamaat-ud Dawa

NEW DELHI: India's National Investigation Agency (NIA) has put a Pakistani diplomat on its ‘wanted’ list and released his photo, seeking information. It said the diplomat Amir Zubair Siddiqui who was posted as visa counsellor in the Pakistani High Commission in Colombo had been included in the list along with two other Pakistani officers for conspiring to launch 26/11type attacks on US and Israeli consulates besides Army and Navy commands in south India in 2014. NIA said a fourth Pakistani officer posted in the high commission in Sri Lanka was also involved in the conspiracy. The development comes even as the agency is preparing to send a request to Interpol seeking red corner notices (RCNs) against the Pakistani officers, who have reportedly been repa-

triated to Islamabad. While the NIA chargesheeted Siddiqui in February, the other three officers could not be identified. The two, who have been put on the ‘wanted’ list apart from Siddiqui, are a Pakistani intelligence officer who went by his alias ‘Vineeth’, and another official codenamed ‘Boss alias Shah’. This is the first time that India has put a Pakistani diplomat’s name in the ‘wanted’ list or sought a red corner notice against one. According to the NIA, the Pakistani officers, while serving in Colombo from 2009 to 2016, planned to attack vital installations in Chennai and other places in south India with the help of their agents. Siddiqui allegedly hired Sri Lankan national Muhammed Sakir Hussaien and others, including Arun Selvaraj, Sivabalan and Thameem Ansari, all of whom were

arrested by agencies here. After recruiting them, Siddiqui and the other Pakistani officers instructed them to collect information about defence installations, nuclear establishments and movement of arms and click photographs of such places, the NIA claimed. The Pakistanis also asked them to steal laptops of senior Indian Army officers and supply fake Indian currency notes (FICN), the agency said. They planned to attack the

US consulate in Chennai, the Israeli consulate in Bengaluru, the Eastern Naval Command headquarters in Visakhapatnam and various ports, the NIA claimed. The US shared key information with India in the case which helped investigators nail the Pakistani officers. The code name for the plot to attack the US consulate in Chennai was ‘wedding hall’ which was to be executed by ‘cooks’, a code for terrorists who were to gain entry from the Maldives into India. Hussaien gave a detailed description of his meetings with various Pakistani officers based in Sri Lanka as well as two ‘fidayeen’ (suicide attackers) whom he had met in Bangkok. ‘Spice’ was the code name for the bombs, which were to be planted at the consulate.

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan's largest television network, Geo TV, has gone off air in most parts of the country, apparently for airing programmes widely seen as unacceptable to the powerful army establishment. Without revealing who was behind the blackout of Geo, Pakistan home minister Ahsan Iqbal said it was not taken off air by the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) or the ministry of information. “We are off the air in 80% of the country,” Mir Ibrahim Rahman, the chief executive of Geo network, told media without blaming anyone. The blackout began in the first week of March,

when Geo News went off air in cantonment areas across the country and adjacent residential areas. By the start of April, according to media reports, all Geo channels - including news, entertainment and sports channels - were being blocked across the country by cable operators. According to Pemra, it has issued notices to cable operators not to disrupt transmissions by Geo. “Though Pemra issued notices, and the matter was heard by the apex court, no one knows how

to reverse the situation legally and formally. Officials at the media regulator seem helpless and powerless before the hands of invisible yet powerful people,” Fasihur Rehman Khan, a senior journalist and analyst said. Geo reportedly has upset the military with its critical coverage of Pakistan’s placement on a terrorism financing watch list this year. More recently, according to media reports, news reports and articles critical of the army chief, General Qamar Javed

Bajwa, and his domestic and foreign policy preferences, known here as the “Bajwa Doctrine”, have also outraged generals. The Committee to Protect Journalists expressed concern. “The arbitrary suspension of Geo TV on cable TV is a direct assault on Pakistan’s constitutionally guaranteed right to access information,” Steven Butler, the committee’s Asia programme coordinator, said in a statement. “It’s outrageous that the authorities are either unable to find, or too frightened to name, those powerful enough to orchestrate the blocking of the news distribution.”

Dawood Ibrahim and Hafeez Saeed

and Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation. In fact, a few days back the US put another Saeed organisation, his political arm Milli Muslim League, on its list of designated terror outfits. On top of the UN's terrorists list is al Qaida's Ayman al-Zawahiri, who was 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden's number two man. The UN said alZawahiri is still hiding somewhere "in the Afghanistan-Pakistan bor-

der area", reported Dawn. Number two on the list is Ramzi Mohammad bin al-Sheibah, who's identified as a Yemeni national, and who was arrested in Karachi and handed over to the US. Other terrorist outfits the UN says are based in Pakistan or linked to Pakistanis include Al Rasheed Trust, Harkatul Mujahideen, Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, Wafa Humanitarian Organisation, JeM, Rabita Trust, Ummah Tameer-iNau, Afghan Support Committee, Revival of Islamic Heritage Society, Lashkar-i-Jhangvi, AlHarmain Foundation, Islamic Jihad Group, Al Akhtar Trust International, Harkatul Jihad Islami, Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan, Jamaatul Ahrar and Khatiba Imam Al-Bukhari.

India brands Pak diplomat ‘wanted’

Amir Zubair Siddiqui

Pak news channel forced to go off air

Students clash with police

DHAKA: Thousands of students across Bangladesh staged protests and sit-ins on Monday after clashes at the country's top university left at least 100 people injured. Police fired rubber bullets and tear gas at Dhaka University students fighting what they consider "discriminatory" government job quotas in favour of special groups. It was one of the biggest protests faced by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in her decade in power. A minister was due to meet protest leaders in Dhaka. But students at state-run universities in Chittagong, Khulna, Rajshahi, Barisal, Rangpur, Sylhet and Savar boycotted classes and staged sit-ins, police and media said. "More than 1,000 students joined the demonstrations at Jahangirnagar University," said Ataur Rahman, a protester in Savar where the university is located. The clashes, which began on Sunday night and went into the early hours of Monday, turned Dhaka University into a battleground. Copycat protests soon started in other major

cities as thousands of students boycotted classes and staged sit-ins. Organisers in Dhaka said they were holding peaceful protests when police started firing tear gas and rubber bullets. They used batons and water cannon to clear a central square. As violence spread across the campus, thousands of male and female students launched into pitched battles with police. "More than 100 people were injured," police inspector Bacchu Mia said, adding they were treated in hospital but their condition was not serious. Protesters threw rocks, vandalised the home of the Dhaka University vice-chancellor, torched two cars and ransacked the fine arts institute, said senior police officer Azimul Haque. Fifteen people were detained, police said. The students are angry at the government's decision to set aside 56 per cent of civil service jobs for the families of veterans from the 1971 war of independence and for disadvantaged minorities. That leaves most university graduates to fight for only 44 per cent of the jobs.

Lawyer’s body found D H A KA: Bangladesh’s police recovered the bloodstained body of a prominent Hindu lawyer who went missing last week and arrested four people, including his wife, suspecting their link to the murder. Ratish Chandra Bhowmik, who fought the state’s case in high-profile murder trials against Islamist extremists, went missing after he left his home in northwestern

Rangpur district last week. When the 58-year-old lawyer did not return home and his mobile phone was found switched off, his family went to the police and the Hindu community leaders. “Their confessional statements led us to the body from an under-construction building near Bhowmik’s own house,” said Benazir Ahmed, DGP anti-crime Rapid Action Battalion.

Hindu Centre (East London) Radha Krishna Temple

Reg. Charity No 254982 (A Religious Cultural & Social Institution)

5/7 Cedars Road, Stratford, London E15 4NE Web: Tel: 020 8534 8879 ⌡ RESIDENT RELIGIOUS WORKER is required to conduct regular temple services, including bathing the statues of the Gods/Goddesses, performing Arati. Clean and maintain the sacred temple altar. Should be able to perform Bhajan Keertan & religious scripts. Take part arrange cultural activities, regular festivals. Ability to get on with every one. ⌡ Salary £1500 pcm includes accommodation, food & other amenities. Please send your application to Mrs Saroj Mittal (General Secretary) 07859 057 598 Email: at the above address by 15th May 2018


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Asian Voice | 14th April 2018


Lanka PM survives no confidence vote COLOMBO: Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe last week survived a no confidence vote in parliament after a majority of legislators voted to support his coalition government but the instability caused may damage its reform agenda. The opposition, eyeing fractures within the ruling alliance, had sponsored the trust vote against Wickremesinghe blaming him for failing to prevent an alleged scam here in the bond market, and for failing to stop anti-Muslim riots here that occurred last month. Wickremesinghe, who leads Sri Lanka’s United National Party (UNP), won the support of 122 members of the 225member parliament, with 76 voting against him. President Maithripala Sirisena’s Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) was split over the vote, with 16

Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe

of its 42 lawmakers who support the government voting for the prime minister. Some 26 legislators, many from the SLFP, were absent. “We can have a fresh start from tomorrow,” Harin Fernando, a minister with the UNP told the parliament during the debate. But many UNP legislators urged Wickremesinghe to sack the SLFP ministers who had expressed no confidence in him - suggesting

the unity of the coalition was fraying. Sacking the ministers would dent the government’s stability in parliament and affect Wickremesinghe’s plans to pass key laws aimed at attracting more foreign investment. The SLFP and UNP agreed on a coalition government after the last parliamentary elections in August 2015. But the centre-left SLFP had opposed

many liberal economic policy measures proposed by the centre-right UNP. Wickremesinghe has faced criticism for failing to deliver on economic growth which slumped to a 16-year low of 3.1 per cent last year, its worst pace since a recession in 2001. The rupee currency is hovering at a record low. The government is also under pressure as it tries to manage China’s expanding infrastructure push in Sri Lanka, located near key shipping lanes in the Indian Ocean. Over-dependence on China for borrowing, however, has raised fears that this may push the tiny country deeper into debt. Foreign direct investments doubled to $1.6 billion last year, but more than 40 per cent of that was from China, for two key projects that have dragged on for more than a year.

SLFP Ministers to decide on continuing in govt

CO LO M B O: The SLFP Central Committee met at President’s official residence in Colombo and all SLFP ministers decided to boycott the Cabinet meeting called by the Prime Minister. The decision was taken in protest against the UNP Ministers who were continuously insulting the SLFP ministers as well as the UNP demand for the SLFP MPs who voted in favour of the NoConfidence Motion against the Prime Minister to resign, a senior minister said. Accordingly, as a courtesy, other SLFP Cabinet

ministers will also boycott the cabinet meeting with the 16 Cabinet Ministers

who voted in favour of the no-confidence motion. Minister Anura

ters should quit the government and the proposal was seconded by Minister

NEW DELHI: Behind the facade of its stated India First policy, the Abdulla Yameen regime in the Maldives continues to run circles around the Indian government. Taken aback by reports in the past few days from Male that Maldives wanted a Dornier maritime surveillance aircraft from India, top sources in India said that the letter of exchange (LoE) for deployment of Dornier in the archipelago had actually been pending with the Yameen government since 2016. "Formal acceptance of the offer through the LoE

by Male is the first step to initiate the process for construction of hanger and deployment of Dornier but they have chosen to sit over it for 2 years," said a top Indian government official. Calling out Male for what they described as its duplicitous nature, official sources said the talk about the need for a Dornier aircraft was nothing but a fig leaf intended to candy-coat Male's decision to get rid of an Indian naval chopper which was gifted by the Indian government. Earlier reports stated that the Maldives had refused to renew the LoE

for one of the 2 Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH) which India had gifted to Male. A top Maldives offi-

Priyadarshana Yapa had proposed during the meeting that the SLFP minis-

SLFP Central Committee meeting at President’s official residence in Colombo



Zuma faces 16 charges in $2.5 bn arms deal DURBAN: Former South African president Jacob Zuma faces 16 charges, including fraud, racketeering and money laundering. Zuma appeared in the court to face corruption charges relating to a $2.5 billion arms deal. Zuma's transition from "Mr. President" to "Accused Number One" in less than two months is a significant setback for the 75-yearold, whose nine years in office were marked by economic stagnation and credit downgrades. State prosecutors and Zuma's lawyers asked the Durban High Court to adjourn the case until June 8 so both sides could prepare submissions. Judge Themba Sishi approved the request. A potential trial would take several more months to prepare. Zuma denies any wrongdoing and is challenging the decision to prosecute the case, a dramatic development on a continent where political leaders are rarely held to account for their actions before the law. Zuma, who has never lost the ability to rouse a crowd with traditional song and dance, still retains some popular sup-

Jacob Zuma

port, especially in his Zulu heartland. Heavily armed police in riot gear lined the square outside the court, as thousands of Zuma supporters gathered to express solidarity with a leader they say is the victim of a politically motivated witchhunt. Zuma, forced to resign by the ANC last month, was at the centre of a 1990s deal to buy billions of dollars of European military hardware to upgrade South Africa's post-apartheid armed forces. But the deal was mired in scandal and controversy from the start, with many inside and outside the ANC questioning the spending given the massive social problems, from health to education, Nelson Mandela's party had to address after coming to power in 1994.

S Korea's ex-president jailed

S.B. Dissanayake. The majority were later of the view that they should quit the government. A full report compiled by 16Cabinet ministers was also submitted at the CC meeting. At that time, the President has said that without rushing into any decision, a collective decision should be taken as a party and expressed the importance of taking collective decisions by all 41 SLFP Mps. The SLFP Central Committee is to meet next week and take a decision on whether they would quit the government or not.

S E O U L: South Korea's former president Park Geun-hye was jailed for 24 years for corruption, closing out a dramatic fall from grace for the country's first woman leader who became a figure of public fury and ridicule. The sentence followed a trial lasting more than 10 months which ended with Park being found guilty on multiple criminal charges, including bribery and abuse of power. "The amount of bribery the accused received or demanded in collaboration with Choi amounts to

Dornier from India. Top government sources said that the Yameen government had not just refused to renew the LoE for the ALH operating from Addu atoll but had also not responded to an advance offer by India to renew the LoE for the other ALH based in Laamu atoll. This effectively means that Male wants both Indian choppers out. Developments causing concern: US Amid allegations of China engaging in massive land grabbing in the Maldives, the Pentagon said it was a cause of con-

cern for the US. Asserting that the US was "committed to a free and open" IndiaPacific rules-based order, the Pentagon said anything else would cause the US concern. "The US is committed to a free and open Indo-Pacific rules-based order. We have seen concerning developments in Maldives as far as the Chinese influence is concerned," Joe Felter, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for South and Southeast Asia, said. "It's in India's backyard. We know it's of concern to India. So, yes, (the situation in Maldives) is a con-

more than 23 billion won ($21.7 million)," Judge Kim

Park Geun-hye

Se-Yoon said, referring to Park's secret confidante and long-time friend Choi Soon-sil.

India calls Maldives’ bluff on Dornier

Abdulla Yameen

cial was quoted as saying that Male had not renewed the LoE because it wanted a

cern. We will see how it plays out. It emphasises some of our priorities identified in our National Defence Strategy," the top Pentagon official said. He was responding to a question on the allegations of a Maldivian opposition leader and a former foreign minister, on the Chinese land grabbing activities in the island nation with the potential of developing them into a military outpost. Felter said these developments were "a cause of concern" for all states that supported the maintenance of a rules-based order.

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Asian Voice | 14th April 2018

Senior Dubai cop praises Indians, bashes Pakistanis NEW DELHI: A senior Dubai police official has in a series of tweets praised Indians and lambasted Pakistanis, saying the former are "disciplined" while the community of the latter is rife with "disruption, crime, and smuggling", reported Dhahi Khalfan, Lieutenant General and Head of General Security in Dubai, posted these tweets after Dubai authorities arrested a gang of Pakistanis for smuggling drugs. The Pakistani press said he's known to make controversial statements. Perhaps because of that, he

"Pakistanis pose a dangerous threat to gulf s o c i e t i e s because of the drugs they bring in to our countries. We must impose strict procedures at the entrances [of our counDhahi Khalfan, Lieutenant General and tries]." Head of General Security in Dubai Then he has a whopping 2.66 milwondered why it was that lion followers. Indians are disciplined but Khalfan tweeted postPakistanis aren't. "How ing a picture of the arrestcome Indians are discied Pakistanis, with a complined while disruption, ment below it that said, as crime, and smuggling are translated by UAEviral: prevalent in the Pakistani

community?", he tweeted. The official then went on to say that that no one in Dubai should hire Pakistanis. "I invite our citizens to not employ Pakistanis...It is now a national duty to stop hiring Pakistanis," tweeted the Dubai official. He added that Pakistanis were a "danger" to the Gulf region. "Pakistanis pose a dangerous threat to Gulf societies because of the drugs they bring in to our countries. We must impose strict procedures at the entrances [of our countries]," tweeted Khalfan.

Youngster jailed for killing girlfriend Ria Patel in car accident

CALIFORNIA: A young Minnesota man was sentenced to four years in prison for killing his girlfriend, Indian American business student Ria Patel, in a drunk driving incident last year. Hennepin County, Minnesota District Court Judge Fred Karasov sentenced Michael Laurence Campbell, 21, to four years and four months for killing Patel on Sept. 17, 2017. Campbell was intoxicated as he careened into a stop light in northeast Minneapolis. He fled the scene on foot. Police arriving at the scene were able to free Patel, 20 at the time of her death, from the car and provide medical aid until paramedics arrived. The youngster nevertheless died from massive head injuries. On March 14, a

Hennepin County jury found Campbell guilty of three charges: two counts of criminal vehicular homicide - one for the crash, the other for leaving - and for a lesser charge of leaving the scene of an accident not caused by the driver that resulted in a death. Campbell had a history of offenses, including several instances of speeding, underage drinking, and using marijuana. Judge Karasov listed Campbell’s 12 past driving offenses before he delivered the sentence. Campbell stood before the court and apologized. He said he loved Patel and wanted to spend his life with her. “Every time I looked into her eyes I fell more in love with her,” he said, acknowledging that the young woman’s death was his fault, and that he

Ria Patel

would have to live with the memory of that fatal night for the rest of his life. Campbell maintained throughout the trial that the accident was the result of a passionate kiss delivered by Patel, which caused him to take his eyes off the road. But a jury rejected his “passionate

kiss” defense. Karasov said that Campbell was grossly negligent and noted that he left the crash site as Patel was dying, and did not come forward when police began a search for him. The judge said he believes that Campbell loved Patel but the kiss defense was irrelevant. He called it “an excuse.” Campbell was sentenced to 52 months for the first charge, minus the 199 days already served. Karasov did not deliver a sentence on the other two charges, but he did apply a sentence remaining on Campbell’s unfinished court business stemming from a 2016 hit-and-run case and connected probation violation - 90 days which reduced the 199 days already served to 109 days.

10 Indian Americans named Guggenheim Fellows

CALIFORNIA: Ten Indian Americans were among 173 people named 2018 Guggenheim Fellows by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation’s board of trustees. The recipients and the fields in which they won the fellowships are: astronomy-astrophysics: Shrinivas Kulkarni; engineering: Arup K. Chakraborty; neuroscience: Aniruddh D. Patel; South Asian studies: Archana Venkatesan; choreography: Aparna Ramaswamy and Ranee Ramaswamy; filmvideo: Parvez Sharma and Nandini Sikand; photography: Pradip Malde; and poetry: Srikanth Reddy. The successful candidates were chosen from a group of almost 3,000 applicants in the Foundation’s 94th competition. In all, 49 scholarly disciplines and artistic fields, 69 different academic institutions, 31 states,

and three Canadian provinces are represented in this year’s class of Fellows, who range in age from 29 to 80. Edward Hirsch, presi-

Shrinivas Kulkarni

dent of the Foundation, said: “It’s exceptionally satisfying to name 175 new Guggenheim Fellows. These artists and writers, scholars and scientists, represent the best of the best.” Shrinivas (“Shri”) R. Kulkarni is a George E. Hale


Professor of Astronomy and Planetary Science at California Institute of Technology. After an early career in guiding the engineering of polymers and catalysts using quantum mechanical calculations, since 2000, Arup Chakraborty’s work has focused on bringing together immunology and the physical and engineering sciences; more specifically, the intersection of statistical mechanics and immunology. Aniruddh (Ani) Patel is a cognitive neuroscientist at Tufts University, where he conducts research on music and the brain in the Department of Psychology. Archana Venkatesan is associate professor of comparative literature and religious studies at the University of California, Davis. Aparna Ramaswamy is co-artistic director, choreographer, and principal dancer of Ragamala

Dance Company with her choreographic partner (and mother) Ranee Ramaswamy. Filmmaker and author Parvez Sharma grew up in a small town in northern India, just 20 minutes from the Islamic seminary that gave birth to the Taliban, while enrolled at a Catholic (missionary) school called St. Mary’s Academy. In 2006, the U.S. government designated him an “Alien with Extraordinary Abilities.” Born and raised in New Delhi, Nandini Sikand is a filmmaker, dancer-choreographer, author and cultural anthropologist. Pradip Malde is a photographer and teaches at the University of the South, Sewanee, TN. Srikanth Reddy is the author of ‘Voyager’, which was named one of the best books of poetry in 2011 by The New Yorker, The Believer, and National Public Radio.

How Indian granny's luggage shut down Australian airport BRISBANE: A portion of the Brisbane Airport was closed after a package with the words 'Bomb to Brisbane' was found along a baggage carousel. Passengers at the airport were removed from the

Brisbane. In order to identify her bag, the lady had meant to write 'Bombay', not bomb. Venkata Lakshmi (65) arrived in Brisbane from Mumbai only to be interrogated by the Federal

area and a traveller who noticed the bag said she thought it was a joke. The Australian Federal Police did not take the issue lightly and bag was examined thoroughly. They could not find any suspicious abject inside the bag. It later turned out that the suspicious piece of luggage belonged to an elderly lady who was travelling from Mumbai to

Police. Lakshmi's daughter Devi Jothiraj said that her mother was mortified about the "mix-up". "She was pulled into a room and interviewed. My mother told me they thought something was in there and people were panicking. They asked her to open the bag and asked her why it says bomb and she said - It's for Bombay!" said Jothiraj.

Indian driver wins 12 mn Abu Dhabi lottery

John Varughese

DUBAI: An Indian driver in Dubai has hit a jackpot by winning a whopping dirham 12 million in a raffle draw in Abu Dhabi, the latest addition to the long list of lucky winners from India. John Varughese, who has been working as a driver for a private company since 2016 won the huge amount at the Big Ticket raffle held at the Abu Dhabi International Airport. "I couldn't believe that I could get lucky. April Fool's Day had just passed by and I thought it was some friend pulling my leg. I also had doubts if this was a fake call," Varughese said. "Even though it was confirmed but I still took a while before calling my family back in Kerala. This is surreal and the new feeling of being a winner is slowly sinking in," he told the 'Khaleej Times'.

Varughes said he intended to share the prize money with four of his friends, but first wants to switch from a basic phone to a smartphone. "I have a small family with wife and two children. I will now invest in their future. There is no better way to make use of this money than to invest in education," he said. "I will set aside a portion to help the needy too as I shouldn't forget my past days," Varughese added. Earlier in January, another Keralite in the UAE had won a dirham 12 million in the biggest-ever raffle prize money in Abu Dhabi. Eight Indians were among the 10 people who had won dirham 1 million each in a mega raffle draw in Abu Dhabi in October last year. In August, an Indian had won dirham 5 million in the draw in the UAE.


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Asian Voice | 14th April 2018


Centre, IPL face Cauvery heat CHENNAI: The Cauvery row took centrestage after Rajnikanth warned the Narendra Modi government that it would earn the wrath of Tamil Nadu people if the Cauvery Management Board was not formed soon. He appealed to Chennai Super Kings players to wear black badges during the upcoming cricket matches to express their solidarity with the people of Tamil Nadu. The state has been asking the Centre to comply with the Supreme Court order in formulating a scheme or establishing a board to monitor Cauvery water releases from Karnataka. On Sunday, Rajinikanth, who is gearing

Earlier, a bandh called by the DMK and its associate parties evoked good response. Most shops remained closed and bus services were badly affected. The Rajnikanth and Kamal Haasan bandh also up to form his own political affected train services in party, shared the stage with some places as protesters actor-turned-politician staged rail rokos. DMK Kamal Haasan in a fourworking president M K hour silent protest. Fans Stalin, TNCC chief S turned up in large numbers Thirunavukkarasar, Dravida to catch a glimpse of the Kazhagam leader K stars, disrupting traffic for Veeramani, and VCK leader at least two hours near the Thol Thirumavalavan were protest venue in Chennai. arrested by the police for

blocking roads. SC raps Centre: Amid heated politics over Cauvery water sharing, the Supreme Court criticised the Centre for delaying implementation of its February 16 verdict and asked the government to show its bona fides by submitting a draft scheme by May 3 to ensure the mandated distribution of water. The court’s order came on a contempt petition filed by Tamil Nadu accusing cabinet secretary P K Sinha and water resources secretary U P Singh of deliberately disobeying the court’s direction to frame a scheme for implementation in six weeks of the order that ended on March.

Naidu intensifies agitation over special status AMARAVATI: Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu hopped on a bicycle, symbol of his Telugu Desam Party (TDP), and led a cycle rally in the state capital Amaravati. He was joined by TDP lawmakers and party supporters in the six-km-long yatra that was held to intensify their protest against the denial of special category status to Andhra on the last day of the parliament session. Children holding TDP flags ran along Naidu's cycle as he kick-started the rally from Venkatapalem village to the state secretariat to demand immediate

implementation of all promises made by the UPA government when the state of Telangana was separated from Andra Pradesh in 2014. The UPA government had promised a Chandrababu Naidu organizes Cycle rally drew from the alliance “special status” and a speagreement. He also tried cial financial package to to bring a no-confidence the state, partly as commotion against the govpensation for the fact that ernment, but it hasn't the prosperous IT hub of been taken up due to Hyderabad would become repeated adjournments in the capital of Telangana parliament. While the rulafter 10 years. Following ing NDA says it has the long-pending demand already sent about £1.20 for his state, Naidu with-

billion to Andhra Pradesh, new rules disallow “special status” sought by states such as Andhra and Bihar. BJP national president Amit Shah even wrote Naidu a letter in which he said the centre had give millions of rupees to Andhra but there seemed to be no sign of it. It was interpreted as an allegation of corruption. Naidu shot back asking, “Why are you spreading lies?” YSR Congress MPs quit The five YSR Congress Party MPs quit their Lok Sabha seat, unhappy at Andhra Pradesh not being given 'special category' status.


Gurmeet Ram Rahim case gets a dramatic twist P A N C H K U L A (HARYANA): In a shocking twist to the Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim's case, an anonymous letter was addressed to the Punjab and Haryana High Court serving Judge Justice Surya Kant. Addressing the case of alleged removal of cash and other assets from the Dera headquarters in Panchkula, the letter read that Haryana CID Chief Anil Rao and DSP Ajit Singh took bribes in exchange to help Dera move cash, assets, and illegal weapons from the headquarter to a safe location following conviction of Gurmeet. The letter, which was also addressed to advocate Ravinder Singh Dhull, accused the two top cops of destroying nearly 65 computer hard disks that were retrieved from the Dera. The drives were sent to forensics, but were reported to have been severely damaged. It further described how both the officials did not arrest two

Gurmeet Ram Rahim

key accused in the Panchkula violence case. “The police did not take any action against Vipassana Insan (Dera Sacha Sauda Management Committee chairperson) and Golo Mausi (Gurmeet's relative). Author of the letter has only identified himself as a neighbour of Golo, and has now demanded a CBI probe against aforementioned Haryana police officers. Advocate Ravindra Dhul has, meanwhile, handed over the anonymous letter to the Punjab and Haryana High Court hearing the Dera Sacha Sauda case.

Cold war in Punjab police over drug racket CHANDIGARH: Punjab's Director General of Police (DGP), human resource development, Siddharth Chattopadhyaya has made serious allegations of “roles” in the drug racket against DGP Suresh Arora, chief of the force, and Dinkar Gupta, DGP, Intelligence. The allegations came in Chattopadhyaya's application to the Punjab and Haryana High Court in a suicide case, and the court stayed the probe against the officer. He said he was being dragged into a suicide case by a probe team led by another DGP-rank officer, LK Yadav, at the behest of Arora and Gupta. Heading a special investigation team (SIT) to look into drug-racket charges against Moga senior superintendent of police (SSP) Raj Jit Singh, Chattopadhyaya said he was being targeted as his probe “brought to light the role of” Arora and Gupta. His application added that

a benami house of a “DGP” is among the points being investigated in relation to the drug racket. The complaint is seen as a bold move. DGP Arora was retained by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh as the top boss, even though he was given the post by the previous SADBJP regime. The move comes with only five months remaining for Arora, a 1982-batch IPS officer, to retire in September. Meanwhile, there were reports of Chattopadhyaya's “involvement” in the suicide of Inderpreet Chadha, who killed himself after his father Charanjit Singh Chadha, the then president of charity Chief Khalsa Diwan, was caught in a video scandal. A senior official said, “Chattopadhyaya has a feeling that his name was dragged into the suicide case just to end his chances for the top post and to derail the SIT investigation into Raj Jit's role.”



SC refuses to interfere in Bengal panchayat polls NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court has refused to interfere in the upcoming panchayat polls in West Bengal, saying parties should approach the state election commission with their grievances. The West Bengal unit of the BJP had accused ruling Trinamool Congress activists of preventing BJP candidates from filing nominations. They told the SC that "democracy is being murdered” in the state and sought the top court's intervention. The BJP had also asked for nomination papers to be made available online, an extension of the last date of filing these papers and the deployment of paramilitary forces in the state in the run up to the polls. The panchayat polls in the state are scheduled to be held on May 1, 3, and 5. The votes will be counted on May 8. According to the notification, the last date of filing nominations is April 9 and the last date of scrutiny of the nominations is April 11. A group of BJP leaders also agitated outside the office of state Election Commission, demanding strict action against any violence taking place during the filing of nominations papers in the first week of May. Referring to Ram Navami rally clashes, Bengal BJP president Dilip

Ghosh said his party would also file a defamation case against a newspaper for blatantly blaming the BJP for violence, without any evidence. “They have reported that a police personnel got injured in Raniganj after BJP activists hurled bombs at him. This is completely baseless. We will file a defamation case against the publishing house,” Ghosh added. Filing of nominations was marred by massive violence across the state. Multiple incidents of aggression, mostly targeting opposition party workers were reported from several districts. BJP district president Gourishankar Ghosh alleged that TMC workers had taken control of the entire BDO office in Lalbagh, and that opposition workers were being attacked and barred from collecting forms. At least a dozen BJP workers were injured in the incident. A BJP delegation led by Dilip Ghosh met Governor Kesari Nath Tripathi, following the attacks, and submitted a deputation alleging “unabated violence” during the nomination process. “Unless immediate remedial measures are enforced, the process of the free and fair election will not be possible and it will be a mockery of democracy,” BJP claimed.

Case registered against BJP minister Babul Supriyo KOLKATA: Police in West Bengal have registered a case against Union Minister Babul Supriyo on charges of disrupting public order after he clashed with cops. Two separate FIRs were filed against him, after he got into a scuffle with cops while he

in trouble. It is my duty. But the police say that I won't be allowed to go as Section 144 is imposed in the area. Being a minister, I cannot violate rules.” Internet services were suspended and prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC were clamped

Union Minister Babul Supriyo being stopped by police

tried to enter troubled areas in Asansol. The town has lately been engulfed with violence following Ram Navami processions in Raniganj earlier last week. Supriyo had met slum dwellers in the area and then reportedly wanted to take his march into the Railpar area in Paschim Bardhaman district. The singer-turnedpolitician has, meanwhile, filed a counter-FIR. He said, “As a public representative, I have every right to visit my constituency, especially when people are

in the area, following clashes between two groups over the Ram Navami rally at Raniganj. Minister of State for Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, Supriyo accused Chief Minister Mamata Banerhee of ignoring the tense ground situation. “The state government has been told repeatedly that if they cannot control the situation, let central forces come in. This has been clearly turned down. The CM is sitting in Delhi and looking at her prime ministerial ambitions,” he said.




Asian Voice | 14th April 2018

Dr. Hari Desai

Jain King Kharavela, the Great of Kalinga

• Kalinga invasion transformed “Chandasoka” to “Dhammasoka” • 37 year old Kharavela mysteriously vanished never to be traced


ormally, the historians in India and abroad prefer to consider only two Indian rulers with “The Great” as their suffix: Ashoka, the Great (304 BC-232 BC) and Akbar, the Great (15421605 AD) as if there never were other great rulers. Of course, like Alexander, the Great (356 BC-323 BC), Ashoka’s empire ranged from present day Assam in India to Baluchistan in Pakistan and Pamir Knot in Afghanistan to Tamil Nadu in India. He was the third ruler in succession of the Mauryan Dynasty. King Chandragupta was the founder of the Maurayan Dynasty in Magadha (roughly modern Bihar).

torians and authorities on Ancient India like Prof. Radha Kumud Mukerjee mentioned such a great ruler in just three paragraphs where as they go gaga over Ashok, the Great. “Kharavela, coming fifty years after Ashoka, was a follower of Jainism and his services to Jainism were also comparable to those of Ashoka to Buddhism, but he took pride in styling himself as ‘the embellisher of all temples’ and as ‘the worshipper of all religions’, as Shashi Kant, a brilliant scholar of history and a retired Special Secretary to the Uttar Pradesh Government records in his book “The Hasthigumpha Inscription

Sishupalgarh, the remains of Kharavela’s capital, Kalinga-nagari

He was inspired by Kautilya or Chanakya who wrote Arthshastra, the great book on ancient Indian polity. Even Akbar was the third Mughal Emperor of India who was known for his vast multicultural empire from present day Afghanistan to Kashmir to Bengal and entire India till Deccan above Godavari river. After the decline of Maurya Dynasty of Magadha, King Kharavela of Aira Dynasty of Kalinga, the present day Odisha, became the most powerful king of Aira Dynasty who conquered nearly half of India! Unfortunately, even some of the celebrated his-

of Kharavela and The Bhabru Edict of Asoka”. But for the casual mention by Dr. Jitendra B. Shah, Director of L.D. Institute of Indology, the research on Kharavela, the Great, would not have been possible for this column. Of course, historical novels are not presenting history, but one cannot suppress curiosity to read even the historical novels on Kharavela. We come across a historical novel based on the Kalinga king’s life, “Kharavela : The Warrior Seeker”, by Biswakesh Tripathy, a retired Indian Police Service(IPS) of repute. Researchers throw new

at Savagahanam ceremony Sushima but “when in Mathura, he worshipped Ashoka usurped the the Arahamta and at the throne, he was opposed by same time gave gifts to the family members who had Brahmins. This catholicity links to the Jains and the the edicts of Ashoka, the of outlook and broad liberAjivikas” but “he may have terms we come across are alism was characteristic responded by reaching out vijita and avijita, which in trait of nearly all successto their rivals, the their respective contexts ful Indian rulers. It is also a Buddhists, for support. The refer to regions that were fact that all his expeditions power struggle may even conquered and those that were purely political and explained his invasion of remained unconquered. military campaigns and Kalinga” around 262 BC, Kalinga was an avijita none of them was guided according to Sanjeev where a state society had by any religious motive.” Sanyal, an economist, a not yet evolved at the time His ambition to conquer Rhodes Scholar and of Ashoka’s invasion. Eisenhower Fellow. The Kalinga invasion After the death of led to deaths and destrucAshoka in 236 BC, taktion on a large scale. Such ing advantage of the a massive human calamity situation, Kalinga seems to have been rebelled and seceded unprecedented in Indian under the leadership of history. According to the Chedi clan. A Kharavela, the Great of Ashoka’s thirteenth major Kalinga remarkable military rock edict, 100,000 people leader called were killed, 150,000 were light on the Kalinga Desh Kharavela, who was carried away as prisoners and her prominence after born in 209 BC, got and many times that numthe death of Ashok in 236 associated in adminisber perished. This catasBC. Last king of Nanda tration as Yuvaraja in trophe brought about a Dynasty had conquered 194 BC and his coronapersonal transformation in Kalinga. Later the third tion as the King of Ashoka. His outlook king of Maurya Dynasty, Kalinga took place in towards society, politics Ashoka, invaded Kalinga in 185 BC at the age of and life underwent a deep the eighth year of his twenty-four. Kharavela change. He had embraced reign. “The name of acquired a vast empire Buddhism two years prior Kalinga was usually only at the age of thirty to the Kalinga invasion, reserved for the region four. In his thirteenth but the Kalinga calamity consisting of the Ganjam regnal year (172 BC) transformed Chandasoka and Ganpati districts of when he was only 37 (Ashoka, the Cruel) to Odisha and the years old, he mysteri- Ashoka’s capital pillar at Sarnath, Dhammasoka (Ashoka, the Srikakulam, Vizianagaram ously vanished never the sculpture has been adopted as and Visakhapatnam disto be traced. Rather the National Emblem of India tricts of Andhra,” the whole country his mission to take according to Manorama B h a r a t a v a r s a revenge by defeating Tripathy in “Odisha (Bharadavasa) and live up the Magadha King was Review”( December to the ideal of a over. Bahasatimita, the 2015), the publication Cakravartin (Chakravartin: then king of Anga and by the Government of an ideal universal ruler) Magadha, was forced to Odisha. “The oldest remained unfulfilled. bow at his feet. He known political lineage In the Jain tradition, could bring back the of Odisha is that of Bharata, the son of Kalinga Jina from Kharavela, who Rishbhanatha, is credited Magadha. belonged to the with giving the country Though Kharavela Mahameghavahana this name, while in the was follower of Jainism, family of the Chedi Brahmanical tradihe was not clan. tion Bharata, the intolerant Kharavela’s famous Next Column: son of Dushyant or fanatic. Hathingumpha inscripTragic love story of and Shakuntala Nowhere tion is found in the does he Udayagiri caves in Sultan and Rani immortalized in the Bhubaneswar. In all fair- An Indian relief that may depict Ashoka d i s p a r a g e , Rupmati in the center. From Amaravati (Guntur Abhijnanaor ness to the existing evi- Dist.), now the capital of Andhra Pradesh criticize Shakuntalam of show disrespect dence, we must concede Kalidas, is also credited to other religions. Dr. Kant Religious). that no other political famwith it. Thus, in essence, notes: “In fact, he takes Ashoka was not the ily is known to us from both the Jain and pride in calling himself as natural claimant of succesOdisha prior to the house Brahmanical traditions are Sava-pasamda-pujako sion to be the Magadha to which Kharavela unanimous as regards the (worshipper of all sects) King after his father, belonged.” Ashoka himself name Bharatavarsa for the and sava-devayatanaMauryan King Bindusara. does not speak in his edicts geographical entity now samkharakarako (embelHis father was keen for of any war or battle fought known as India. lisher of all temples); and accession of his elder son, by him against Kalinga. In

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Asian Voice | 14th April 2018

IAF begins process to procure 110 fighter jets worth $15 bn The Indian Air Force is all set to initiate the process of one of its largest orders in recent years; acquiring a fleet of 110 fighter jets worth an estimated $15 billion. As per a statement on the defence ministry’s website, at least 85 per cent of the jets have to be made in India, in a major push to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Make In India' programme. Issue of the request for information (RFI) is the first step to acquiring the aircraft. Later, a request for proposal (RFP) or a formal tender, to be followed by evaluations, technical trials, and commercial negotiations. Leading military aircraft producers, including US firms Lockheed Martin and Boeing, Sweden's Saab, and France's Dassault Aviation, are those contending for the mega deal. The deal is expected to be worth $15 billion. The statement said, “The Ministry of Defence, Government of India. Intends to procure fighter aircraft for the Indian Air Force, which are to be made in India. The proposal is to procure

approximately 110 fighter aircraft.” It added, “The procurement should have a maximum of 15 per cent aircraft in flyaway state and the remaining 85 per cent aircraft will have to be made in India” in collaboration with a strategic partner or an Indian production agency. It means that the aircraft have to be jointly produced by a foreign aircraft maker along with an Indian company under the recently-launched strategic partnership model which aims to bring in high-end defence technology to India. “The aircraft are intended as day-andnight-capable, all-weath-

er, multi-role combat aircraft” that can be used for air defence, reconnaissance, maritime, electronic warfare as well as refuelling missions. While the Indian Air Force has a sanctioned strength of 42 squadrons, the actual strength is about 31 operational squadrons. Estimates suggest some 400 aircraft will go out of service in the next decade- many of them being the Russianmade MiG aircraft, backbone of the Indian Air Force. A source said, “So this request for information, which is the first step in the acquisition of new fighter aircraft, comes at a critical time.”

Modi, Oli reboot India, Nepal ties with infra push Moving to actively counter China’s infrastructure ‘offensive’, India will build a crucial cross-border rail link between Kathmandu in Nepal and Raxaul in India, connecting the Himalayan nation to the Indian rail system, while separate inland waterways could give the landlocked country a route to the sea. Announcing the decisions after a meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Nepal’s newly elected PM K P Sharma Oli, Indian foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale said the rail link project should be a “game changer” in Indo-Nepal ties. The two nations agreed to speed up three pending cross-border rail links and complete two others this year. A joint statement said developing waterways was a “landmark” decision that will facilitate movement of cargo, within the framework of trade and transit arrangements, and provide additional access to sea for Nepal. “This new initiative would enable cost effective and efficient movement of cargo,” it said. The cooperation on waterways is significant in the light of previous political hurdles to cooperation

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his Nepalese counterpart KP Oli in New Delhi

in river projects despite several Nepal rivers draining into India and the potential to exploit hydel power and check environmental damage due to flooding and maintaining ecological flows in the lean season. With Oli’s pre-visit comments about Nepal having “two neighbours” clearly indicating he is ready to do business with China, the Indian infrastructure outreach seems intended to more closely enmesh Nepalese and Indian economies and ease and expand movement of people and goods at the borders. The Modi-Oli meeting could succeed in erasing some of the bitterness in ties since the border blockade of 2015 due to the Madhesi agitation when Oli was previously PM.

The two countries agreed to speed up implementation of projects in Nepal, a fact borne out by the 2018 Budget in which India raised its outlay for Nepal by 73%. The India-Nepal statement said Modi “assured Oli that India remains committed to strengthening its partnership with Nepal as per the priorities of the government of Nepal”. Oli said, “We want to erect a strong edifice of trust-based relationship between the two close neighbours that we are.” Modi reminded Oli that he should include all sections of Nepalese society. The two PMs inaugurated an integrated check post (ICP) at Birgunj in Nepal and a petroleum product pipeline between Motihari and Amlekhgunj.


Modi in Bihar for Champaran Satyagraha celebrations Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is on a visit to Bihar, dedicated to the nation the Madhepura electric locomotive facility, as he flagged off the first engine manufactured there through a remote device from Motihari. In the region to participate in the concluding celebrations of the Champaran Satyagraha's centenary celebrations, Modi addressed 20,000 'swachhagrahis', and laid the foundation stone for four sewerage projects. Theme of the celebrations was 'Satyagrah se Swachhagrah'. The electric locomotive facility marks a transformation for rail freight movement in India and the region of Madhepura. A joint venture between French multinational company Alstom and the Indian Railways, the electric locomotive is a double section locomotive capable of hauling 6000 tonnes at a maximum speed of 120 kmph. It has 12,000 horsepower that allows faster and safer movement of heavier freight trains across the country. Spread across 250 acres of land, the factory is set up at an estimated cost of over Rs 20,000 Crores, and would

Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Bihar Governor Satyapal Malik, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Union Ministers Ram Vilas Paswan and Uma Bharti during the concluding ceremony of the Champaran Satyagraha centenary celebrations in Motihari, Bihar

generate six lakh mandays of work for local residents. The Champaran Satyagraha was first held in 1917, in the Champaran district of Bihar during the British rule. Inspired by Mahatma Gandhi, the movement gathered people from the whole nation moving towards the region. Addressing the mass, Modi called all participants and the audiences 'Swachhagrahis'. He stated how the same situation is being witnessed today. Modi remembers important names of Gandhi, Rajkumar Shukla, Rajendra Prasad, and paid respect to the efforts made by them to achieve the present. Modi discussed the Rs 100 Crore project

named 'Amrit' that aims to provide clean and drinking water. He also talked about different projects and initiatives that are launched and have been launched to make Bihar more progressive. Modi talked about the 12,000 horsepower engines, stating it will significantly improve the speed of goods trains. He also made announcements about the various projects from the provision of LPG connectivity to the inauguration of a new train to be named the Champaran Hamsafar Express. He further added that 50 Lakh women were benefited from LPG connections through the Ujjwala Yojana in state.

Over a dozen people were injured in clashes in Bihar as several groups tried to push through a second Bharat Bandh in the same month. Aggressive protests were conducted against reservation in jobs and education. Protesters, mostly from the upper castes, blocked roads, railway tracks, and forced markets to shut down in almost half a dozen districts. Around 127 people have been arrested, and dozens injured in protests. The anti-quota call spread across the nation, however, failed to gather much momentum.

Salman out on bail, thanks fans for support Continued from page1 The 'Bajrangi Bhaijaan' tweeted, “Tears of gratitude. To all my loved ones who are with me and never lost hope. Thank you for being there with all the love and support. God Bless.” Not only the masses, A-list celebrities vied for Salman during his and after his trial. Following the conviction, the actor was housed in VIP barrack number 2, as inmate no. 106, right next to self-styled godman Asaram Bapu. Jail Superintendent Vikram Singh informed that Salman was treated like a normal prisoner, and was given a wooden bed, a blan-

ket, and a cooler in his cell. Asaram was reported to be unhappy with the treatment meted out to the actor in the jail. Prison staff reportedly were starstruck upon his arrival, and flocked to him, lining up for autographs and selfies. Asaram has claimed that Salman has promised him to quit smoking and will reduce his daily coffee intake. Following the bail, Khan returned to Mumbai, only to find himself surrounded by thousands of fans lined at the Mumbai airport. There was also a huge mass of public supporters waiting for him outside his Bandra home-

Galaxy Apartment. Loud screams of joy went up with frantic waving and clicking pictures on phones as Khan and his family waved at the crowd outside the sea-facing luxury apartment. Calls of 'Salman Khan Zindabad' came as proof of just how strong fandom can be and just how rich the actor is in terms of love. The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is however, not too thrilled. Manilal Valliyate, PETA India CEO, said, “While Salman Khan gets to go back home to his movie star life for now, blackbucks were made to pay the highest price, with their lives.”



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Scientists create new sticky patch that can read blood sugar levels Painful finger-prick blood tests taken several times a day by millions of diabetics could become a thing of the past. A pioneering new patch that sticks onto the skin to test glucose levels has been created by scientists. The device, developed by Bath University researchers, works by assessing sugar levels in sweat - not blood. It is hoped the skin patch could one day be linked to a smartphone app to warn diabetics when to take action. The patch, if proven in larger trials, could replace the current method, considered unpopular, to test sugar levels. Professor Richard Guy and colleagues found the patch was accurate after testing it on pigs and two human volunteers. He said: 'A non-invasive - that is, needleless method to monitor

blood sugar has proven a difficult goal to attain. 'The closest that has been achieved has required either at least a single-point calibration with a classic "fingerstick", or the implantation of a pre-calibrated sensor via a single needle insertion.' Professor Guy added the new monitor 'promises a truly calibration-free approach'. Professor Guy and colleagues hope to improve the design of the patch to allow for full functionality across a 24-hour period and carry out clinical trials.

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5 Untold Benefits Of Orange Seeds Asian Voice |

Succulent, juicy and pulpy are the words that come to mind when we think of an orange. We love eating one or two oranges a day most of the year, don't we? Plus, they're easily available and provide instant energy. Oranges have always been cherished and loved by one and all. Be it orange juice, tart or salad, orange tastes the best in any form. However, we usually tend to throw their seeds out of our salads or exclude them while preparing our orange-rich meal. In addition to the health benefits of oranges, their seeds provide nutritional benefit as well! Here are some incredible benefits of orange seeds that you must know: 1) Powerful Antioxidant: Just like oranges, its seeds are also a great source of powerful antioxidants, which keep our body hydrated and fresh, and improve our overall health. An early morning dose of antioxidants can boost up your energy levels to a great extent. Next time when you are making orange juice for your breakfast, don't forget to include the seeds, too.

2) Flavouring Essence: The essential oil extracted from orange seeds provides flavours for water, cake icing and also other foods. Moreover, you can add this essential oil in your bath tub for a citrusy scent or use it as a diffuser oil to have a citrusy fragrance at home. 3) Energy Booster: Consuming orange seeds may accelerate the energy level in our body. Presence of palmitic, oleic and linoleic acids in orange seeds enable the storage of energy in human cells for longer time. 4) Hair Care: Oil extracted from orange seeds is also known as a great condi-

tioner for hair products. Presence of vitamin C and bio-flavonoids in orange seeds promote blood circulation to the scalp, which results in healthy hair. Moreover, folic acid present in orange seeds helps in accelerating the hair growth.

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Tens of thousands of allergy sufferers are at risk because of a shortage of the life-saving EpiPen jabs. Mylan, the Pennsylvania-based firm that manufacturers the device, has warned of global supply problems. The company has announced it will ration EpiPens, which contain a 0.3mg dose of adrenaline, in Britain. Pharmacists have cwarned of 'life or death situations' amid fears stocks of the devices could run out.


















The crucial devices are used by allergy patients during a deadly anaphylactic shock - which can kill in minutes. Pharmacists will be limited to dishing out just two EpiPens per prescription. Patients will temporarily not be able to get the gadgets without prescription. Supply of the EpiPen for children, which contains a halved dose of epinephrine, or adrenaline, has not been affected.


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5) Cleaning Agent: Orange seeds are also used for cleaning purposes. The oil drawn out from orange seeds serve as a great cleaning agent while cleaning, de-greasing machines, metal, et al. This oil also has a fresh and piquant aroma.

Thousands of allergy patients face 'life or death situations' due to shortage of EpiPens

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Asian Voice | 14th April 2018


Lives of Dan (Varun Dhawan) and Shiuli (Banita Sandhu) are tied together due to a sudden turn of events.

Rajamouli yet to narrate 'RRR' script: Jr NTR


elugu hunk Jr NTR has revealed that director SS Rajamouli is yet to narrate him the story of his next project, tentatively titled 'RRR'. Brand ambassador of Vivo IPL 2018, the actor was speaking at a press conference organised by Star Sports in Hyderabad. Speaking about Rajamouli's upcoming, featuring Ram Charan, he said, “He has not narrated the complete script to me. I am ready for it. He said that he will plan and fix a time and he will narrate it. When I get to hear it, I will share it with you. I think Ram Charan also said the same thing to you.” It is believed that Rajamouli will face challenges handling two major heroes like the two. When asked about risks of comparison and competition, Jr NTR said, “There is definitely going to be competition. I feel it is not going to be two way, but three way, as SS Rajamouli is also in the competition. However, it will be a healthy competition and I always encourage it.”

Kamal Haasan apologises to Christopher Nolan


eteran actor Kamal Haasan recently met Hollywood's A-list filmmaker Christopher Nolan of 'Interstellar' in Mumbai. Both the stars had a brief interaction after attending the event 'Reframing The Future of Film'. Haasan apologised to Nolan for watching the director’s 'Dunkirk' in digital format. Haasan tweeted, “Met Mr. Christopher Nolan. Apologised for seeing 'Dunkirk' in the digital format and in return I am sending 'Hey Ram' in digital format for him to see. Was surprised to know he had seen 'Papanaasam'.” Filmmaker and archivist Shivendra Singh Dungarpur, who is hosting Nolan for all the three days, hopes the director's trip to India will draw attention to the cause of film preservation and restoration. A public lecture was conducted last week, followed by a discussion on 'Reframing The Future of Film' on April 1 in Mumbai with Nolan, Dean and Dungarpur. A roundtable discussion is also planned with prominent personalities of the Indian film industry to be attended by Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan, Haasan and Shyam Benegal.

Andrea Jeremiah gets a new look for ‘Vada Chennai’


ne of the finest performers in Tamil cinema, Andrea Jeremiah's stellar performance in 'Taramani' left a massive impact on the audiences. The actress is now all set for the release of the gangster trilogy 'Vada Chennai', directed by Vetri Maaran. Within days after the release of the first look poster, a new picture of Andrea from 'Vada Chennai' has gone viral on social media. The actress will reportedly play Chandra, wife of director Ameer, who plays Rajan in the film. Set in North Chennai, the film will track the life of a gangster for 35 years. Produced by Dhanush's Wunderbar Films, 'Vada Chennai' is slated to release sometime in June. Jeremiah was recently in the news after she spoke about the patriarchy of Tamil cinema. Andrea meanwhile, also awaits the release of the ambitious 'Vishwaroopam 2', in which she will share screen space with veteran actor Kamal Haasan.


Nagarjuna and Nani collaborate for first time

irst schedule of Akkineni Nagarjuna and Nani's yet-to-betitled has been wrapped up, and the second schedule commenced this

Nani wrote, “This morning I was super excited to go to RFC for shoot a kid .. like it's my first time here.. Guess why? King joins the

week. The film was shot over 4 weeks in the Miyapur metro station, Hyderabad, for the first time and had the participation of actors Nani and few other actors. The next schedule is allegedly set in the backdrop of Ganesh Chaturthi festival and the team is currently filming a song and a few important scenes involving the two top actors and several dancers and artists. Nani is currently one of the most commercially viable stars and has at least six hits to his credit. Nagarjuna, on the other hand, is a superstar and boasts of a massive fan following. Both the actors shared their excitement on being on the sets.

shoot Today Welcome on board sir” Nagarjuna responded saying, “Got you @NameisNani !! Can't wait to start working with talent personified”. The film will be directed by Sriram Adittya of 'Bhale Manchi Roju' fame. A source said, “On the occasion of Ugadi, king Nagarjuna and our natural star Nani's multi-starrer film has begun shooting in Hyderabad, and there was a sense of eagerness on the sets of the film. It will be a laugh riot with many different elements to it and the makers are confident that the film will meet the people's expectation.”

Niharika ‘bags’ role in 'Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy'


fter a killed debut in the Telugu film industry with 'Oka Manasu', and in Tamil with 'Oru Nalla Naal Paathu Solren', Niharika Konidela is now on cloud 9 as she has been approached for uncle Chiranjeevi's magnum opus 'Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy'. The film already boasts of an epic star cast including Amitabh Bachchan, Vijay Sethupathi, Nayanthara, Sudeep, and others. While there is no official confirmation, if she agrees, this could be her big break. Last week, it was reported that the makers are looking for a new girl as the heroine. Director Arumuga Kumar stated that it would be none other than Niharika Konidela, daughter of Chiranjeevi's brother Nagendra

Babu. “I got to know Niharika through a friend, met her and felt that she would be suitable for the role. I narrated the story, she liked it a lot and agreed to be on board. It is a very important character for her in the film. We have begun shooting for the past one week and I find Niharika a good choice,” Arumuga said. He added, “Acting comes quite naturally to her and it appears that it is an innate quality in her. She is not only a beautiful girl, but also is a brilliant performer who works very hard. Despite belonging to a legendary family, she is such simple, down-to-earth person an has absolutely no airs about her.”

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Shah Rukh’s wax statue unveiled in New Delhi


Deepika breaks silence on her marriage

Asian Voice | 14th April 2018



adame Tussauds wax museum in New Delhi has revealed its biggest attraction, yet, a wax statue of Badshah Shah Rukh Khan. Dressed in a blue achkan, standing in his famous arms-spreadwide pose, the figure garnered unmatchable attention on the first day itself. Official handle of the musuem tweeted, “The king has graced #TussaudsDelhi. Show your love #NaamToSunaHiHoga.” This is Shah's second wax statue after the one on display at Madame Tussauds London, which was unveiled in 2007. The museum, which is located in Connaught Place in Delhi, also houses the wax figures of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Katrina Kaif, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan, and others. On the work front, Shah Rukh is currently shooting for Anand L Rai's 'Zero' with Anushka Sharma and Katrina Kaif. Also, he has decided to remake Kamal Haasan's 'Hey Ram', and has acquired rights from co-producer Bharat Shah. Originally made in Tamil, the movie was dubbed in Hindi and went on to become one of Haasan's best films. Shah Rukh was also a part of the original. The movie was a historical political drama with a semi-fictional plot which was centered on India's partition and assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.

Sushmita's body is making us green with envy


he breaker of barriers, and mother of two, Sushmita Sen is riding high on the fitness horse. The social media recently erupted with a picture of her super toned midriff and from what we, we can't

help but be mightily impressed. Sush, who often advocates the prime philosophy of fitness, and body positivity has recently been posting photos of her hitting the gym, or working out. Her recent picture showing a perfect torso with cuts in the right places, is a reward of her regular training and a super strict diet Snippets on her Instagram show just how hard she has been working to achieve the fit body. The 42 year old comes as an inspiration to all the youngsters who aim to achieve a fit body. She recently raised the bar higher by posting a short video herself doing knuckle push-ups. For the uninitiated, the exercise involves doing push-up with all pressure on the knuckles instead of the palms.

edia went crazy last week on reports that B-Town's favourite duo Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone are tying the knot this year-end. There were also rumours that the brideto-be has even begun shopping for her big day. It is rumoured that parents of both the actors came together for the first time to discuss the nuptials. The meeting between Prakash and Ujjala Padukone, and Jagjit Singh and Anju Bhavnani also involved an exchange of gifts and jewellery for the soon-towed couple, including a Sabyasachi sari. However, putting a n end t o all

speculation, Deepika said in a recent interview that when the time comes, she will know. She added that she has been raised in a way where marriage as an institution is extremely important. She has always followed her instinct she said, and will take the plunge when she is ready and “when it's meant to happen.” Ranveer in another interview said he was currently maintaining a balance between work and l i f e right

now and that he has many things on his plate. The gorgeous couple every now and then, give us major relationship goals. Their utmost respect and admiration for each other has left us swooning multiple times and we will never stop shipping them. In the meantime, it is said that both the families are busy scouting for the perfect venue in India and abroad, before they set a date. The wedding will reportedly be a private affair with only close friends and family in attendance as the couple exchange their vows according to Hindu rituals.

Aishwarya dotes on daughter Aaradhya


atrina Kaif's sister Isabelle has been in town for quite soThe gorgeous Aishwara Rai Bachchan has embraced motherhood with wide arms, however, it is daughter Aaradhya who is the real star. From accompanying the celebrity mum to international film festivals to posing for the paps, the little one has handled her inherited stardom with much ease and grace. In a recent interview with Vogue, where she made the cover with international singer and producer Pharell Williams, Aishwarya talked about the golden lessons she is trying to give her daughter. “If you believe you are tired, you will be, so I choose to find pleasure in the moment and experience the present for what it is. I am a firm believer in the state of the mind, and that's the means to keep your head above a high level of water every day,” Aish said. She added, “That's something I'm imparting to Aaradhyathat B-positive is not just a blood group and that everything in life is a learning curve. Experience life in the moment, because you're going to have to live with your experience.” She also addressed struggles she goes through as a modern mother. The 44 year old


remarked on how the common perception is that since she is a celebrity, she must be equipped with “an army of help”. It is not the case however. “It's busy! In the superlative. I spend all my time with Aaradhya, and I have one nanny, by choice. I read comments saying, “Ah, she must have an army of help” and I understand the perception, but I choose this way, which means life is always busy. I respect homemakers for the endless work they do,” Ash said. When asked if the six year old realises the kind of attention she gets from the media, Aishwarya said she is just a child and can't casually say that she understands it. “I haven't made a conversation out of it. But it can never be normal as there is nothing normal about it. Aaradhya has seen it since she was a baby, while I was exposed to it only in my twenties. Is it normal to her? I don't know. It can't be normal to see human beings behave strangely. But also, it's not like she woke up one day and experienced it. She has seen crowds outside our gates, media outside the airports and I would like to believe that she realises that it happens sporadically.”

Anupam Kher nominated for BAFTAs

nupam Kher has received nomination for the Virgin TV British Academy Television Awards for his work in a BBC project. He found a place in the nominees for Best Supporting Actor Trophy for his performance in the adaptation of Satnam Sanghera's memoir 'The Boy with the Topknot'. Kher is up against Adrian Dunbar of 'Line of Duty', Brian F O'Byrne of 'Little Boy Blue' and Jimmi Simpson of 'USS Callister'. The British Academy of Film and Television Arts announced the nominations for the annual Virgin TV British Academy

Television Awards last week. The ceremony will be held at the Royal Festival Hall on May 13. Kher tweeted, “Thank you Bafta for the nomination. I feel honoured and humbled.” 'The Boy with the Topknot' impressed critics worldwide and Kher's nomination now is just a bonus. Congratulatory messages almost instantly began to pour in. Anil Kapoor tweeted, “Congratulations !Sir Anupam Kherji .. your friend from Juhu India is very proud of you.” Sonam Kapoor also tweeted, “Amazing Anupam uncle!”



Asian Voice |


14th April 2018

Welcome Reyaan


If your child has a good joke, poem or any suggestions they would like to share please email us with the name, age and school. Email:- THOUGHT OF THE WEEK

work, “Success is no accident it is hard , sacrifice and perseverance, learning, studying g. most of all, love what you are doin - Pele

Facts You Didn't know about Ancient Egypt

l A Pharaoh never let his hair be seen – he would always wear a crown or a headdress called a nemes.

Aekta and Alpesh Patel with their little gift from God, Reyaan. Congratulations!

Coming Events

Bochasanwasi Shree Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha's head Param Pujya Mahant Swami is currently in Bangkok, Thailand. After completing his vicharan there, he will leave for Hong Kong on April 11. During his previous vicharan in Singapore, Mahant Swami met his believers and hari bhakts, and conducted conventions for his young followers. He spread the word of peace and unity. Mahant Swami will conduct in vicharan in Hong Kong till April 14.

ARIES Mar 21 - Apr 20

had 15 doors in it. Only one of the doors opened.

l Egyptian’s believed that the earth was flat and round (like a pancake)

l Egyptian children wore no clothing at all until they were in their teens. The temperature in Egypt made it unnecessary. Adult men wore skirts while women wore dresses.


Cleopatra Pharaoh Nile Egypt Pyramid Papyrus Mummy Tomb Fertile







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Spiderman Picture Drawn By Tathagat Dave Age-9 years

Experiment of the week

Make your own Quick Sand What you'll need: 1 cup of maize cornflour Half a cup of water A large plastic container A spoon Instructions: 1 This one is simple, just mix the cornflour and water thoroughly in the container to make your own instant quick sand. 2 When showing other people how it works, stir slowly and drip the quick sand to show it is a liquid. 3 Stirring it quickly will make it hard and allow you to punch or poke it quickly (this works better if you do it fast rather than hard). 4 Remember that quick sand is messy, try to play with it outside and don’t forget to stir just before you use it. 5 Always stir instant quicksand just before you use it!

Sudoku Answer Answer Edition 14

Joke of the week

A snake kid asks his mom, "Mom, are we poisonous?" His mother says, "Why do you want to know?" The snake kid says, "because I just bit my tongue."

The UK’s leading Vedic writer and TV personality

You will probably have little cause to complain this week. Expect everything to run smoothly and luck to attend your efforts. However, underneath this positive surface you may be plagued by a feeling of restlessness. Try to strike a balance between material and emotional affairs !

TAURUS Apr 21 - May 21 There may be a discrepancy

between the energy you put out and the actual result achieved. You can do much to minimise this effect by avoiding distractions and concentrating on only what is most essential at a day-to-day level. Try to take things in your stride rather than anticipating what might happen.

GEMINI May 22 - June 22 Although the very practical

affairs of life continue to be highlighted, this does not mean that there will be all work and no play. In fact, you will be very much in demand socially. From a financial point of view take stock of where you’re at rather than to launch any ambitious new business plan.

CANCER Jun 22 - Jul 22

several naked slaves nearby whose bodies were smeared with honey.

l The first pyramid was originally surrounded by a 34 ft tall wall which and that the Nile flowed through the centre of it

l British Safety Council presents the International Safety Awards 2018, on April 27, at the Grosvenor Hotel, London. l Press view of 'Shape of Light: 100 Years of Photography and Abstract Art' on April 30, 10.00 am to 1.00 pm, at Tate Modern, Bankside, London, SE1 9TG. l Kaushik Punjabi presents 'Aao Twist Kare', a concert featuring foot-tapping melodies of Bollywood, on April 14, at Codogan Hall, 5 Sloane Terrace, London SW1X 9DQ. l Annual meeting of the Jain Samaj Manchester to be held on May 19, 4.00 pm onwards, at the Jain Community Centre, 667/669, Stockport Road, Longsight, Manchester, MI2 4QE. l The Embassy of India, Washington, has organised 'Commemmoration of 100 Years of Satyagraha' on April 13, 6.30 pm to 8.00 pm at the Embassy of India, 2107, Massachusetts Ave NW, DC

Sneh Joshi

l In order to deter flies from landing on him, Pepi II of Egypt always kept

Much enthusiasm goes into professional ambitions right now, but you need to be your own boss in many ways. You will be determined to place your lifestyle on a foundation of greater security. Taking a broad perspective on the prevailing cosmic pattern, farreaching change begins to gather momentum.

Get out as much as possible. Do not be misled by inconsequential issues as you will have better opportunities if you stick to your main objectives. The domestic scene may prove to be active and harmonious as long as you use tact and diplomacy. Mentally you will be in good form to make on-the-spot decisions.

LEO Jul 23 - Aug 23

VIRGO Aug 24 - Sep 23

Anything or anyone that drains your time and energy should be re-evaluated. It’s time to use that creative imagination of yours to create grandeur in your life. Don't get too carried away and lose sight of little things that mean a lot to you. There are a lot of opportunities around you.

LIBRA Sep 24 - Oct 23

Avoid get-rich-quick schemes and be cautious about other people's enthusiasm which is likely to be misplaced. There will be increased scope for varying your activities, widening your network of contacts. It is an excellent time for exercising your mental energies, clarifying your and other people's ideas.

SCORPIO Oct 24- Nov 22

Relationships look great as Venus and Mars help to enhance your personal magnetism and put you in a gregarious mood. There are subtle transformations taking shape in you life and a feeling of helpful influences in the background. There is much to suggest that you are in tune with your inner self.

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Try to take things in your stride rather than anticipating what might happen. Keep calm as conflict and disagreement could be sparked off by your short-sightedness. Think carefully about the implications of your actions. Intense focus is what is needed now so do not let yourself be distracted by non-essentials.

SAGITTARIUS Nov 23 - Dec 21

CAPRICORN Dec 22 - Jan 20 Your attitude to material interests is likely to undergo some deep change. On a material level the trend favours establishing greater financial stability. Focus on essentials and establish a solid foundation, so that you feel secure. The outlook remains optimistic and bring you a sense of real achievement. AQUARIUS Jan 21 - Feb 19

You will feel energetic and confident as the week begins. Your thinking is inspired, so listen to your thoughts. Home and family duties and responsibilities may weigh heavy on you. In effect, you’re building a new foundation, so the work you put in now will pay off in the future. Professional and financial pressures will begin to ease.

You have everything to gain by following creative inclinations. If you have new ideas, now is the time to put them into practice. Whatever your present interests you are likely to find that new doors open and the way ahead offers increased scope for expressing your real self. A great time to meet and interact with people.

PISCES Feb 20 - Mar 20




Continued from page 1

At least five more medals have been assured for India later this week, with boxers Amit Phangal, Naman Tanwar, Mohammed Hussamuddin, Manoj Kumar and Satish Kumar having advanced into their respective semi-finals scheduled for April 13 and the men’s and women’s hockey teams also reaching the semis. Surat boy and his partner win gold Surat nboy 24-year-old Harmeet Desai won a gold for India in the table tennis men’s doubles match with his partner G Sathiyan, defeating the Nigerian team in the Commonwealth Games on Monday, visitors swarmed his Surat home to congratulate his family. “We saw match with crossed fingers. When Harmeet and his teammate won, we jumped from our seats, unable to control our excitement,” Harmeet’s father Rajubhai Desai said. At the Belmont Shooting Centre, Heena, 28, dominated her finals with a Games record total of 38. This was the second medal of the Gold Coast Games for Heena after she claimed silver in the 10m air pistol event on Sunday. Overall, India’s shooting contingent have won eight medals in Australia. India's second medal of the day, and first from the country’s para-athletic contingent at the Commonwealth Games, came from para-powerlifter Chaudhary at the Carrara Sports Arena 1. On a day where three other Indian para-powerlifters reached finals, Chaudhary went the distance in his 10-man final and finished with a combined effort of 181. Winning gold was Nigeria’s Abdulazeez Ibrahim and silver went to Malaysia’s Yee Khie Jong. In the men’s 46-49kg boxing quarter-finals, Amit defeated Scotland’s Aqeel Ahmed 4-1 to advance. Tanwar won his 91kg quarter-final against Samoa’s Fans Masoe 5-0 to progress as well, and later in the day Hussamuddin defeated his 56kg opponent 5-0 before Manoj won 4-1 in his 69kg quarter-final. After playing out a 2-2 draw with Pakistan in their opening encounter, the men's hockey team beat Wales 4-3 and with a close victory over Malaysia on Tuesday, the 2014 silver medalists have made it to the final four with one group game (vs England) remaining. India opened their account as early as the third minute when Harmanpreet Singh found the net with his drag flick. Malaysia fought back well and equaliser in the second quarter via Faizal Saari’s field goal. India's midfield had a good day, constantly putting the Malaysian defence under pressure, but the forwards lacked the fin-


ishing touch. India managed to force seven penalty corners but could only convert two - the second being the winner from Harmanpreet in the 43rd minute. A few hours later, the women’s team eliminated South Africa with a 1-0 win in which the skipper Rani Rampaul scored the goal as the fourth quarter got underway. India’s splendid work in the match - which they needed to draw to progress - was highlighted by some excellent work from the defenders and goalkeeper Savita Punia. Though they lost Lalremsiami with a yellow card with 6:46 on the clock, India did well to keep the advantage until full time. The two Indians who qualified for the 50m rifle prone men’s finals were both eliminated from the medals race. Gagan Narang, an 11time CWG medalist, had reached the final with a qualification total of 617, but in the eight-man final was the second shooter to be eliminated. Narang, who won a shooting bronze at the 2012 London Olympics, shot a total of 142.3 in the final. In squash, the women’s doubles pair of Joshna Chinnappa and Dipika Pallikal Karthik beat Pakistan’s Faiza and Madina

ter of Jersey’s Rachel MacDonald and Christine Grimes 22-12. In men's fours, India defeated Botswana 169 in Round 2 match. India sweep TT team event India swept the table tennis team events as the men matched the women to claim a memorable gold with an emphatic 3-0 win over Nigeria on Monday. It is the first time that India has topped both categories. After Manika Batra-led India to a historic triumph over Singapore on Sunday, the men too beat the team from the city state 3-2 in the semifinals, played earlier on Monday. With individual and doubles medals still on offer, India’s performance is already a marked improvement from its disappointing show in Glasgow four years ago when it just managed a silver in men’s doubles. On day 5, in shooting, Jitu Rai won gold in the men’s 10m air pistol followed by bronze for Om Mitharval, and then came silver to teenager Mehuli Ghosh in the final of the women’s 10m air rifle event where defending champion Apurvi Chandela settled for bronze. In weightlifting, Pardeep Singh claimed silver in the 105kg final. At the Belmont Shooting

GOLD MEDALS For the first time in the history of Commonwealth Games, The Indian mixed badminton team won gold at the event. Indian men's table tennis team won gold after it beat Nigeria by 3-0. Jitu Rai won gold for India in the 10m men's air pistol event In a first, the Indian women table tennis team won its first ever Commonwealth gold In 10m women's air pistol, India's Manu Bhaker won gold to bring the gold medal tally of India to six Weightlifter Punam Yadav won the fifth gold for the nation in the women's 69kg category at the CWG 2018. She became the third woman in the event to snatch a gold for the Indian side The fourth gold medal for India was grabbed by the weightlifter Venkat Rahul Ragala in the men's 85kg category Weightlifter Satish Kumar Sivalingam brought India's third gold in the men's 77kg category The second gold medal for India came after weightlifter Sanjita Chanu won the top spot in the women's 53kg category The gold tally of India began on the opening day of Common Wealth Games 2018 when weightlifter Mirabai Chanu Zafar 2-1, after which Dipika teamed up with Saurav Ghosal in the mixed doubles event to beat Guyana’s Mary Fung-a-Fat and Jason-Ray Khalil 2-0. India's another mixed doubles duo Joshna Chinappa and Harinder Pal Sandhu got the better of Caroline Laing and Jacob Kelly of Cayman Islands 2-0 in Pool H match. In lawn bowls, India’s Krishna Xalxo beat Fiji’s Arun Kumar 21-11 in the men's singles Section A Round 3 while the women's pair of Lovely Choubey and Rupa Rani Tireky got the bet-

for India’s weightlifting contingent. Teen shooter Manu sets Games record India's shooting sensation Manu Bhaker continued to wow Indian sports fans with her stunning prowess when she set two new Games record in women's 10m air pistol on Sunday. Firing away to glory from the start at Brisbane's Belmont Shooting Centre, Manu first snatched the qualification record, 386 set by Dina Aspandiyarova of Australia back in 2006, with a tally of 388 and then set the final record en route to winning the gold by an unbelievable margin of 6.9 points. Later in the day, Ravi Kumar added a bronze medal winning a shoot-off against Australian Alex Hoburg in the 10m air rifle. Both the shooters were tied on 204.6 points after 20 shots in the final but Ravi prevailed in shoot off to climb the podium. Weightlifter Venkat Rahul Ragala wins gold Venkat Rahul Ragala extended India's medalhunting run in the weightlifting competitions as he clinched the gold medal in the men's 85kg category. Venkat lifted a total of 338 kg - 151 kg in snatch and 187 in clean and jerk - to bring

grabbed the top spot in the women's 48kg category SILVER MEDAL Mehuli Ghosh of India won silver for the country in the 10m women's air rifle In the 10m men's air pistol event, India got silver when Om Mitharval seized the second spot Pradeep Singh of India brought silver to the nation in the men's 105 category weightlifting Heena Sidhu gave India its second silver medal in 10m women's air pistol On the first competition day at the Common Wealth Games, weightlifter P Gururaja claimed a silver in the men's 56kg category BRONZE MEDAL Apurvi Chandela won bronze in the 10m women's air rifle event India's weightlifter Vikas Thakur grabbed a bronze to add in the weightlifter's gold run in the Commonwealth games this year. He got the third spot in the 94kg category In the 10m men's air rifle event, India's Ravi Kumar won a bronze medal Becoming the youngest Indian weightlifter to grab a Common Wealth Games medal, 18-year-old Deepak Lather from Haryana brought a bronze in the men's 69kg category.

Centre, Jitu - a CWG gold medalist four years ago in Glasgow - shot a Games record total of 235.1 after entering the eight-man final at fifth place in qualifying. Coming in at third place after silver medalist Kerry Bell of Australia (233.5) was Mitharwal with 214.3. At the Carrara Sports Arena 1, weightlifter Pardeep, aged 22, lifted a total of 352kg (152 in snatch and 200 in clean & jerk) to take silver behind Samoan Sanela Mao who won gold with a total effort of 360kg (154 + 206). This was the ninth medal

maiden gold medal for India in this weight category. Weightlifter Sathish Kumar Sivalingam won gold in the men's 77kg event . Indian weightlifter Sanjita Chanu won gold in the women's 53 kilogram category. The Manipuri star lifted a total of 192 kg which included a CWG record of 84 kg in the snatch and 108 kg in clean and jerk. This was India's second gold. Fellow Manipuri weightlifter Mirabai Chanu had won gold with spectacular record breaking attempts in the women's 48 kg earlier.


Asian Voice | 14th April 2018

Parag Patel and David Luckman win gold in shooting

England's Parag Patel and David Luckman won Commonwealth games gold in the Queen's Prize Pairs shooting in a Home Nations 1-2-3. The English duo took gold in the nonOlympic event at David Luckman & Parag Patel the Belmont Full finished eighth with his Bore Range. Patel and partner Nicole Luckman also won the Rossignol, but it is his full bore pairs event at colourful life story which Glasgow 2014. Luckman, captured the imagina41, winner of the 2014 tion. individual event, and Pitcairn was introseven-time medal winduced to the sport as an ner Patel, 42, were third air force cadet. He joined behind Wales heading in 1956 and became a into the final distance. In pilot. the event, competitors He foiled a hijacking fire at targets over five attempt in 1974, when distances. piloting a CP Air flight Wales' Chris Watson from Winnipeg carrying and Gareth Morris took 120 passengers. There silver and Scotland's Alex was another Home Walker and Ian Shaw Nations clean sweep of bronze. The event the podium in the men's received lot of attention 50m rifle prone final, due to the participation won by David Phelps of of Robert Pitcairn, who Wales. Scotland's Neil was born in June 1938 Stirton took silver and and is the oldest athlete Kenneth Parr of England in the history of the claimed bronze. Games. The Canadian

Walsall FC and BMYG partner up for football experiences

10 to 17-year-olds were trained by Walsall’s professional coaches

On Saturday 31st March, the British Muslim Youth Group BMYG teamed up with Walsall FC to bring youngsters to Banks’s Stadium for a day of football and fun. The attendees, aged between 10 and 17, took part in a training session led by Walsall’s professional coaches, before receiving a free ticket to watch the Saddlers’ home match against Portsmouth FC. The initiative is part of BMYG and Walsall FC’s joint ‘Pass It On’ project. The two organisations are working together to pass on opportunities, skills and rewards to the local community, especially those living in close proximity to Walsall FC and the Banks’s Stadium. Volunteers at BMYG

were also welcomed by the club on Saturday, rewarding all of the hard work they do for the community of Walsall. Before the event, the Director at BMYG, Riz Ahmed said, “Football is a great way to get the young people of Walsall together, no matter their background, religion or age. Here at BMYG, we are very excited for this Saturday’s activities with Walsall FC and our ongoing partnership with them. The day will allow our young people to spend the afternoon improving their own football skills and then get to watch Walsall FC in action. Saturday is just the beginning of many exciting events to come, showing young people that Walsall is a great place to live.”

Sport 32

Asian Voice | 14th April 2018 AsianVoiceNews



The Chennai Super Kings' loyal fans were in attendance to cheer their team which returned to its den after a gap of 2 years. However, CSK's fans were silenced in the first half by Kolkata Knight Riders' Andre Russell (88 no) whose 36-ball massacre helped his side finish on 202/6. But as the match ended, the smiles were back. CSK chased down a stiff target, scoring 205 for 5 and sealing the deal in the penultimate ball of the contest. The hosts were kept in the hunt right till the end thanks to a 23-ball blitz by Sam Billings (56). In the company of MS Dhoni (25) Billings added 54 from 30 balls for the fourth wicket that gave wings to CSK's chase. Despite losing Dhoni in the 17th over, Billings continued to strike lusty blows to bring down the equation down to 27 off the last 12. Once Billings was dismissed, caught by Robin Uthappa off Tom Curran (239), Dwayne Bravo (11) and Ravindra Jadeja (11) ensured the Men in Yellow walked away as victors. Vinay Kumar (0-35) had a night to forget as he failed to contain 17 runs in the final over. CSK teed off with Shane Watson (42) and Ambati Rayudu adding 75 for the opening stand in 35 deliveries. Once Watson departed, caught at mid-wicket region by Rinku Singh off Tom Curran (2-39), the chase ran into rough weather. Rayudu (39) soon departed, caught by substitute Shivam Mavi off Kuldeep Yadav, and CSK were placed at 85 for 2 in the 9th over. At half-way mark, CSK were 113 away from the target. Suresh Raina (14), dropped on 6 by Curran off Kuldeep Yadav in the 11th over, failed to capitalise the miss and added just 8 more to his individual score to leave CSK on 101 for 3 in the 12th over. From thereon, Dhoni and Billings took over and helped the side stay in the mix. The first half of the evening belonged to the merciless Russell who singlehandedly helped KKR finish off in style after being inserted in. The KKR all-rounder walked in with half of his side back in the dugout with just 89 on board in the 10th over. A fierce drive over covers for a four in the 12th over bowled by

Shane Watson got the Jamaican going. Interestingly, that was the only four Russell was to score since he preferred to fetch runs through sixes. The 29-year-old was happy to face the medium pacers. He took special liking for Dwayne Bravo and Shardul Thakur, from whom he accrued 41 and 27 runs respectively. Russell, in the company of skipper Dinesh Karthik (26) added 76 runs in 46 balls for the sixth wicket to give momentum to KKR's innings. Inauspicious return for RR It was perhaps rain that was forecast which made skipper Kane Williamson chase down a target, but he was vindicated as Sunrisers Hyderabad came up with a top notch performance to get their IPL-XI campaign off to a winning start. With unseasonal rain that battered the city over the last two days mercifully staying away, the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad witnessed the Sunrisers complete a nine wicket win by finishing at 127 for one, Shikhar Dhawan (77 no) and Kane Williamson (36) complementing the fine show of their bowlers, who had restricted Rajasthan Royals to 125 for nine on Monday. Rajasthan struggled to put together largely due to their own lack of enterprise – there were only 12 boundaries – in their innings that lacked thrust at the top and suffered for want of momentum thereafter. For a change, SRH spearhead Bhuvneshwar Kumar was unsuccessful in the first spell and conceded a few. But Rajasthan still struggled to break free of the shackles

imposed by the tall Billy Stanlake, left-arm spinner Shakib Al Hasan (2/23), Afghan leggie Rashid Khan and the successful Siddharth Kaul (2/17). Rahul's punch floors Delhi Kings XI Punjab mentor Virender Sehwag had promised entertainment and aggression before the start of the match. And, the jampacked crowd at Mohali's PCA Stadium was provided with both by KL Rahul as the Punjab side brushed aside Delhi Daredevils by 6 wickets in the second match of this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) on Sunday. Chasing 167, Rahul smashed the fastest IPL fifty off just 14 balls. The Karnataka opener attacked spared none in the first over, he thumped Trent Boult for 16 runs; then belted Mohammed Shami for 12 runs in the second over. The best was reserved for Amit Mishra, who leaked 24 runs in the third over of Kings XI's innings. Rahul's (51 off 16b) assault on Mishra included three boundaries and two sixes. He was dismissed off a Boult full toss. KKR begin campaign with win Kolkata Knight Riders had roped in Nitish Rana to provide stability to their middleorder. He did that job well by playing a useful 25-ball 34, but more than that as a bonus, the Delhi batsman provided his new team two vital breakthroughs with his part-time off-spin to help hosts beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by four wickets with seven balls to spare in their opening match of IPL-11 at the Eden Gardens on Sunday.

KKR have a new team and a new skipper, but there was no change in their game. Sunil Narine once again opened the innings providing the initial fireworks after their spinners – Yadav, Piyush Chawl, along with Narine kept things tight to restrict RCB to 176 for 7 when skipper Dinesh Karthik opted to bowl first on winning the toss. Super Kings are back The sight would have left the Mumbai Indians dugout seriously worried. Hardik Pandya was being helped off the field after writhing in pain following a collision with Dwayne Bravo, while trying to finish a single off the last ball of the MI innings. Till that point of concern, though, MI did reasonably well to launch their campaign by posting 165/4 in the opening game of the league at the Wankhede Stadium on Saturday night, after being put in to bat by Chennai Super Kings, returning to the IPL after a two-year ban. CSK started poorly, losing early wickets and then Kedar Jadhav limped back to the dugout due to a thigh injury midway through the chase. It looked curtains for CSK, but Dwayne Bravo decided to turn the match on its head. He took the Mumbai bowlers head on, smashing 68 off just 30 balls with Imran Tahir giving him company. Then, with just seven runs needed off seven balls, Bravo was out bringing the injured Jadhav to face the last over. With three balls to go, Jadhav hit a six over fineleg, going down on his knees. He then hit the next one for a four through covers to clinch a thrilling win for Chennai.

advanced to the World Group Play-offs with a sensational 3-2 win over China at Tianjin on Saturday. In the must win doubles match, the 44-year-old Paes and Rohan Bopanna downed Chinese pair of Mao Xin Gong

and Ze Zhang 5-7, 7-6(5), 7-6(3) to keep India afloat in the second round Asia/Oceania Group I tie. Ramkumar Ramanathan, who lost the opening singles, redeemed his reputation by defeating Di Wu 7-6(4), 6-3. The win levelled the tie 2-2. Captain

Bhupathi then played a masterstroke by playing left-handed Prajnesh Gunneswaran instead of Sumit Nagal in the tie-deciding fifth rubber against the Chinese teen sensation Yibing Wu and the Chennai boy did not disappoint.

Davis Cup: Paes creates world record in India's win India's Leander Paes created Davis Cup history by becoming the most successful doubles player with a record 43rd win before young guns Ramkumar Ramanathan and Prajnesh Gunneswaran pulled off the must-win rubbers as India

Samit, Haseeb vying for place in England team The England selectors usually reserve a couple spots in the national team for those who perform best in the end -of-season cup. This year the best performers in April and May have the potential to win national recognition. On May 24, England play their opening test of the summer, against Pakistan and there are potential slots for talented youngsters. Samit Patel and Haseeb Hameed are among a number of cricketers vying for a place in the England team. There are doubts over the long-term futures of each of the top three- Alastair Cook, Mark Stoneman and James Vince; questions about who is the best option as spinner; and bewilderment over the make-up of the seam attack - not just who will replace James Anderson and Stuart Broad, but also where England can find the seam bowlers that head coach Trevor Bayliss has identified as essential to improve the recent record abroad. The team is in flux and after not winning in their past 13 away test- there could be no other way. “We have probably got three or four positions in the test team still trying to make their way and prove to everyone they are good enough at that level,” Bayliss admitted after New Zealand held on to win the test series last week. Identifying the potential test players is complicated. This year, Alex Hales and Adil Rashid announced that they were becoming limited-overs specialist. Both could have won test recalls. This is the best time for Samit Patel and Haseeb Hameed to show their prowess and cement their place in the national team. Samit Patel Samit Rohit Patel is a right-handed batsman and a left-arm orthodox spin bowler, he plays first-class cricket for Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club. Patel made his One Day International debut for England in August 2008, however was later dropped from the side after failing to meet fitness levels. After an absence of 2 and a half years, he returned to the ODI side in 2011 and made his Twenty20 International debut, before representing England at Test cricket by winning his first cap on the tour of Sri Lanka in 2012. He is now a globe-trotting T20 player, after winter stints in Bangladesh, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Pakistan leagues, but remains a three-format player for England and wants to play until he is 40. Haseeb Hameed Haseeb Hameed made his first-class debut for Lancashire against Glamorgan in August 2015. He scored 28 in his first innings. He played another three first-class matches that season and averaged 42 with a highest score of 91. In February 2016 Hameed signed a four-year contract for Lancashire ahead of the 2016 season. He scored over 1,000 runs in that season, breaking Mike Atherton's record as the youngest Lancashire player to reach that landmark. He became the youngest debutant to open for England in a Test match, when he played in the first Test against India at Rajkot on 9 November 2016. On 12 November 2016, day 4 of the first Test, Hameed scored his maiden Test half century, becoming the third youngest England batsman to reach 50 runs. He eventually was dismissed for 82. In the third test, he broke his finger. A bleak 2017 summer followed, but England hope to get Hameed – with more shots now- back into their side soon. It may be very soon.

AV 14th april 2018  

Asian Voice Weekly Newspaper (Issue No.: 48)

AV 14th april 2018  

Asian Voice Weekly Newspaper (Issue No.: 48)