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Anand Mela: Mirror of Britain's vibrant and colourful communities
First & Foremost Asian Weekly in Europe
See Page 12-13
Royals join the Gurkhas to mark 200 years of the Regiment
See Page 14
Countdown to the Asian Achievers Awards has officially begun
Indian Army commandos kill N-E ultras in Myanmar
See Page 16
VOL 44. ISSUE 7
Sushma in soup over visa for Lalit Modi
Let noble thoughts come to us from every side
Continued on page 26
Queen's Birthday Honour: 2015
Asians' contribution to be recognised by HM Queen Elizabeth II
The list has emerged and several Asians are recipients of the Queen's birthday honour in 2015. From police officers, to businessmen, as well as University professors, the list encompasses Asians from many fields who are gaining recognition for their hard work and contribution to society.
India's external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj has sparked a new controversy by defending her recommendation to the UK to provide travel documents to former Indian Premier League chief Lalit Modi to visit his wife, who was undergoing treatment for cancer at a Portugal hospital last year. Swaraj tweeted that she had told the UK that “giving emergency travel documents to an Indian citizen cannot, and should not, spoil relations between the two countries.” The Minister said she had conveyed to the British government that India would not object if the British authorities acceded to Modi’s request. There was a need, she said, to take a “humanitarian” view. While Congress party has criticised Swaraj's action, the Union Government and the RSS came out in support of the minister and BJP party president Amit Shah said the recommendation was on 'humanitarian' grounds and not 'moral'. Union
20th June to 26th June 2015
In the first of its kind cross border operation, special forces of the army, in coordination with the Air Force, carried out a surgical strike inside Myanmar last week and killed several militants in two camps of north-eastern rebel groups. The Myanmar government was informed hours after the commandos completed surgical strikes against the groups which had recently killed 30 Indian soldiers. The operation, conceived as retaliation as well as the declaration of Modi government's intent to strike at terror threats across its borders, had begun at 3 am. The commandos safely returned to Indian territory after silencing the insurgents' guns in a 13 hour-operation in which IAF choppers and drones assisted the Special Forces (SF) soldiers. Minister of state for information and b r o a d c a s t i n g
Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore said that the hot pursuit was ordered by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He said attacks on Indians, be it in Iraq or Yemen, were unacceptable. “This is a message to neighbours who harbour terrorists,” Rathore said. Announcing the success, the government made it clear that it was not a one-off operation but symbolized its decision not to be constrained by borders and to be preemptive in dealing with terror threats. “While ensuring peace and tranquility along the border and in the border states, any threat to our security, safety and national integrity will meet a firm response,” the Army said. The troops were guided to two camps of the Nationalist Socialist Council of Nagaland (Khaplang) and allied insurgent groups by intelligence which was gathered by operatives who
crossed over into Myanmar a couple of days ago and returned with precise co-ordinates of the terror dens along with photographs. Specific details of the fatalities among the insurgents were not available but sources put the toll between 20 and 50. More than the toll, the daring raid, which saw commandos crawling hundreds of meters to raid the camps, marked the unveiling of India's new response to unconventional threats irrespective of where they come from. This was the first declared instance of the use of the doctrine of pre-emption: a principle that the US invokes to disregard constraints of national borders to nip threats. Briefing the reporters after the successful strikes, Major General Ranbir Singh made no bones of the fact that the twin operations were Continued on page 26
The Queen's birthday honour list, however, has received criticism, in regards to gender inequality. 28-year-old founder of the Everyday Sexism Project, Laura Bates, has been awarded the British Empire Media, but she feels that the list in itself is a reflexion of sexual inequality, as it creates almost five times more knights than dames. Laura Bates stated, "I think it’s probably broadly representative of the problem that we see across different areas of society. We see the same things in business, at the very top, but it’s also important to recognise that this is a massive problem across society. There are still more men called John running FTSE 100 companies than there are women, and in academia 50 per cent of chemistry graduates are
Chief Superintendent Sunita Gamblin
Dr Chaand Nagpaul
women but only six per cent of chemistry professors.” This year, out of the 1,163 honoured, 51% are women; this is the second time that women have outnumbered men in the honour list.
Continued on page 17
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
Nus Ghani MP for Wealden
Nusrat has been a party activist for over a decade and is a grassroots campaigner. She fought the Birmingham Ladywood seat at the 2010 General Election, securing the highest Conservative vote in 20 years. Selected as the candidate for Wealden in 2013, at one of the largest public primaries in the country, Nusrat was interviewed and chosen by up to 400 members of the public as their preferred candidate. She was elected to Parliament in May 2015 with 57% of the votes, totalling 32,508 votes and a majority of 22,967. Before her election, Nusrat campaigned for better healthcare on behalf of two charities, for breast cancer and ageing and elderly care. She has also worked internationally for the BBC World Service and worked in various trouble spots, including war zones. Nusrat was the first person in her family to go to university, gaining a Masters in International Relations from Leeds University. She is now the first female Muslim Conservative MP. 1) What is your current position? Member of Parliament for Wealden (East Sussex). 2) What are your proudest achievements? Being the first woman in my family to receive formal educa-
would be limited. I never bought into that. 5) Who has been the biggest influence on your career to date? Margaret Thatcher, who put the importance of fostering an aspirational society at the top of my political priority list.
tion and being elected to Parliament. 3) What inspires you? My experiences working with Afghan women in Kabul, who fought for their suffrage under threat from the Taliban.
4) What has been the biggest obstacle in your career? Fighting prejudice when you are told that opportunities for someone from my modest background and circumstances
6) What is the best aspect about your current role? Having the opportunity to make a difference to my constituents’ lives. 7) And the worst? There not being enough hours
14-year-old arrested for stabbing teacher A 14-year-old student has been arrested six hours after a teacher was stabbed in the stomach, at Dixon Kings Academy, Bradford. The incident took place before many horrified pupils. The science supply teacher, Vincent Uzomah (50), was stabbed with a kitchen knife by the pupil. Uzomah had only been teaching at the school for a few weeks. It is said that the teenager had smuggled a kitchen knife into school. The teenager who had fled the scene was arrested in the Bradford city centre, on suspicion of attempting to murder the teacher. It is said that the attack sparked due to a mobile phone. The
Nigerian-born supply teacher had tried to confiscate the pupil's phone during the science lesson, which led to the attack. After the attack, Uzomah was promptly taken to the hospital. He is said to be in a stable condition and not life threatening. The executive principal of the academy, Nick
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Weller said, “It happened right at the beginning of the school day and there were some students who witnessed it. A few students witnessed it – in a classroom. Those students have been interviewed by the police. Obviously, it’s a very shocking thing for them to see. The general atmosphere in the school is very calm, quite orderly, we’re trying to keep to normal routines as much as possible.” He further stated, “... the police are looking into the lead up to this incident, there was nothing in school that led up to it – there may have been other people outside the school who maybe knew something.” Regarding the 14-yearold suspect, detective Superintendent Simon Atkinson said, “We have arrested a 14-year-old male in connection with this offence and he is currently in custody on suspicion of attempted murder. This is believed to be an isolated incident and the police are continuing inquiries to establish the facts. We’re speaking with the pupils there to find out
what they actually saw.” In the previous year, 61-year-old Ann Maguire, was stabbed by 15-yearold Will Cornick seven times, at Corpus Christi Catholic College, in Leeds. Education Secretary, Nicky Morgan said that any kind of violence in schools is “totally unacceptable”, adding that her department is “ready and prepared to offer all necessary support.” The growing numbers of pupils getting involved in violence, especially against their teachers have had many worried. Even during tighter security and thorough checks, how one manages to walk around and smuggle a kitchen knife is equally shocking, as well as disturbing. The 14-year-old appeared at Bradford Magistrates' Court, where he was charged with the attempted murder of his teacher. Additionally, the teenager was also charged with possession of cannabis, and was remanded in custody and will appear at Bradford Crown Court on 29th June 2015.
in the day to do everything you have to do as an MP in the House of Commons. 8) What are your long term goals? To deliver for my constituency on transport, broadband and to secure a better deal for businesses and farmers, and to make sure the voices of the most vulnerable are heard. 9) If you were Prime Minister, what one aspect would you change? To create a country in which it isn’t considered extraordinary for someone who grew up in inner-city Birmingham, a stone’s throw from “Benefits Street”, to sit in the world’s greatest democratic chamber. 10) If you were marooned on a desert island, which historical figure would you like to spend your time with and why? Martin Luther King, because he is a hero of our times.
Cameron prepared resignation speech before general election win
The Conservatives may have astoundingly won the general election with an overall majority, Prime Minister David Cameron, did not appear very certain and had been rehearsing his resignation speech amidst his closest aides. Details have emerged that Cameron had gathered advisers on the patio of his Oxfordshire home to practice a statement announcing he would quit Downing Street. However, hours later, the results showed that the Tories had triumphed. Although days before the elections the Conservatives claimed to know that they would be victorious, David
Cameron seemed skeptical. He was preparing to resign if Labour had managed to win the election. A spectator reported, “At 6.30 p.m. on 7 May, the Camerons invited guests at their home in Oxfordshire into the garden for a drink,. Everyone stood on the patio, wrapped up in coats and shawls and drinking wine. They were understandably nervous. The Prime Minister had prepared a resignation statement and read it out to the assembled gathering.” Among the small group gathered at his house were the Prime Minister's closest aides and oldest political friends.
Recording of sexual offences against children increases by 18% The latest figures on the number of sexual offences against children recorded by police in greater London have seen a staggering 18 per cent increase. Figures obtained from the Metropolitan Police show they rose from 2,991 in 2012-2013, to 3,523 in 2013-2014. And last year, 470 calls received by the NSPCC’s helpline from people across greater London about sexual abuse were so serious that they were referred on immediately to the police or children’s services. The figures are revealed today as the NSPCC launches its third state of the nation annual
report, How safe are our children? at the charity’s annual conference in London. The report compiles the most robust and up-to-date child protection data that exists across each of the four nations in the UK. It’s not clear why the number of offences has risen. Greater awareness may be giving more victims the courage to come forward, including those reporting historical cases, or police forces have improved their recording methods. However it does mean that more children are speaking out, only to find little support to help them recover from abuse.
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
How can we repay the debt to the Gurkhas?
The Gurkhas have been part of the British Army for almost 200 years. These are the fearsome Nepalese fighters whose motto is “Better to die than to be a coward”. Without exaggeration one can say that if Great Britain is a free country today, some if not substantial, credit goes to the sacrifices and blood of these famous soldiers. The potential of these warriors was first realised by the British (the East India Company) at the height of their empire building in the 19th century. The Victorians identified them as a “martial race”, perceiving in them particularly masculine qualities of toughness. After suffering heavy casualties in the invasion of Nepal, the British East India Company signed a hasty peace deal in 1815 which also allowed it to recruit from the ranks of the former enemy. Following the partition of India in 1947, an agreement between Nepal, India and Britain meant four Gurkha regiments from the Indian Army were transferred to the British Army, eventually becoming the Gurkha Brigade. Since then, the Gurkhas have loyally fought for the British all over the world, receiving 13 Victoria Crosses. More than 200,000 fought in the 2 World Wars and 43,000 Gurkhas lost their lives. Proportionately the Gurkhas paid with their lives more than the British, American, or Australian soldiers. This illustrates the valour, determination and devotion of the Gurkhas. In the past 50 years the Gurkhas have served in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Borneo, Cyprus, the Falklands, Kosovo and then in Iraq and Afghanistan. They serve in a variety of roles, mainly in the infantry (no one can compete with the Gurkhas in the close quarter battle) and there are significant numbers of Gurkhas in the Engineers, Logisticians and Signals Specialists. The name 'Gurkhas' comes from the hill town of Gorkha from which the Nepalese kingdom had expanded. Their ranks have always been dominated by four ethnic groups, the Gurungs and Magars from Central Nepal, the Rais and Limbus from the East, who live in villages of impoverished hill farmers. Gurkhas' numbers have been sharply reduced from a World War 2 peak of 112,000 men and
stands at about 3,500 now. Up until recently the Gurkhas had to fight a long battle with the British government for their pension rights. In 2009, all retired Gurkhas won the right to live in the UK, following a high profile campaign led by actress Joanna Lumley whose father served with the 6th Gurkha rifles. Gurkhas were most helpful for the British in 1817 for the Pindaree war, the battle at Bhurtpore in 1826, the First Sikh War in 1846, and Second Sikh War of 1848 when six regiments of the Nepalese army were offered to the East India Company. In what is commonly called the Indian Mutiny of 1857-58 (which Indians call the First War of Independence) the 2nd Gurkhas showed striking proof of their loyalty in Delhi with 327 casualties out of a total strength of 490 was their contribution. It is also important to recollect that during that fateful year a force of 8,000 men (twelve Nepalese army regiments) under the personal leadership of the Prime Minister of Nepal took part in the Final Relief of Lucknow. Such a loyalty, such a sacrifice has been the Gurkhas contribution to the Great Britain of today. How much has the debt been repaid by the British? It is no exaggeration that in several battlefields the Gurkhas turned the tables for Britain and the allied armies during World War 2. This has been well illustrated in 'The War in Europe' by General Dwight Eisenhower. With the shrinking of British Army personnel, we will always need the Gurkhas, small in numbers, giants in valour. Nepal has undergone enormous death and destruction in the recent earthquake. Britain has contributed but a lot more is needed. The 6th richest nation (ie UK) can contribute a substantial amount to build infrastructure and suitable housing in that unearthquake prone country. This could be a permanent and honourable repayment to the thousands and thousands of Gurkhas who have paid with their lives. The Royal Family and the ordinary British men and women have always held Gurkhas in very high esteem. Can the people in power create a vision to rebuild Nepal or at least some parts of it where the Gurkhas hail from, as a permanent legacy of gratitude and comradeship?
India has been a victim of terrorism for a long time. The only effective way to fight terrorism is concerted action by the Central and state governments. There is equal need for the political consensus and also the need to enlist the support of the neighbouring countries in fight against the menace. All political parties should support the government in its fight against the misguided elements. Recently, militants ambushed an army convoy and killed 18 of its occupants in Manipur's Chandel district in what is being described as the worst casualties the Army has suffered in recent years. In another case of defiance, separatists in Kashmir hoisted the flags of dreaded terror group ISIS along with those of Pakistan at two place in the state during protests over the killing of a separatist activist by unknown gunmen. Hardline Hurriyat Conference headed by Syed Ali Shah Geelani had called for protests against the killing of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat activist Altaf Sheikh by unidentified gunmen. Only strong action by the authorities can restrain these men from indulging in anti-India activities. In the first of its kind reaction, the Modi government has asked the army to launch counterinsurgency operations to trace and eliminate the militants involved in the Manipur attack. Central security agencies have said they suspect a mixed group of militants from the Naga group NSCN (K) and the United National Liberation Front of Manipur, or UNLF, is behind the attack. In retaliation and the first of its kind cross border operation, special forces of the army, in coordination with the Air Force, carried out a surgical strike possibly inside Myanmar, killing nearly 20 insurgents of the groups that are believed to be responsible for the deadly ambush in Manipur. The operation was guided by specific and precise intelligence input as elite commandos of the army went
a few km (possibly) inside Myanmar territory to destroy two camps of insurgents. Commenting on the operation, MoS for Information and Broadcasting, Rajyavardham Singh Rathore, a former colonel said, “We crossed over to the Myanmar territory. We have good relations with them and carried out the strike.” Major General Ranbir Singh, Additional Director General Military Operations, said Army had been on ‘high alert’ after Manipur attack. In view of the imminent threat, an immediate response was necessary. Based on intelligence, we conducted operations to counter these planned assaults,” he said. The strike is described as ‘unprecedented and extremely bold’ by the government as Prime Minister Modi had ordered hot pursuit of militants into Myanmar. Sources said the strike was carried out inside Myanmar with the coordination of local authorities. Instead of supporting the Army's strike against the militants in Myanmar, the Congress party has criticised the Union ministers for making “boastful and jingoistic” statements on the Army operation in Myanmar and asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to give them “mentoring and counselling”. The Congress spokesman’s refrain was that in matters of operations by Special forces and those concerning India’s neighbours, there should be sobriety and maturity in the statements and actions of Union ministers and others concerned. The hot pursuit of militants by the government will be a strong reminder to India's neighbours, especially Pakistan, that India will not hesitate to take pre-emptive strike against the militants, in the interest of India's unity and integrity. It would be in the interest of Pakistan if they restrain the anti-India activities in their own country.
Fight against terrorists deserve all party support
3 Know that joy is rarer, more difficult, and more beautiful than sadness. Once you make this allimportant discovery, you must embrace joy as a moral obligation
- French writer André Gide (1869-1951)
Cllr Rabi Martins Watford Borough Council
Our Human Rights Act is Not an Optional Extra The other day David Cameron was heard to be vexing lyrical and singing the praises of the Magna Carta as he celebrated the 800th. Year of its introduction The charter was introduced as a way of protecting the rights and freedoms of our society and made the king subject to the law. in the same way as his subjects were Then centuries later in 1948 there came an important realisation that although fundamental rights should be respected as a matter of course, without some kind of formal protection human rights concepts are of little use So in 1950 the European Convention on Human Rights was brought into effect Our present day Human Rights Act which contains a set of civil and political rights was enacted in 1998 It has always been considered fundamental to the sustainability of a liberal democracy The laws it brought in underpin British values of justice, tolerance and decency. These are laws that have been carefully designed to place government and public authorities under a strict, nonnegotiable obligation to treat people with fairness, equality and dignity. It is a matter of record that very frequently they have been all that has stood in the way of injustice. In recent times here in the UK human rights legislation has blocked blanket interception of private messages by the state, protected our right to a fair trial and prevented indiscriminate police stop-and-search There is a host of other benefits the Human Rights Act
bestows on ordinary people It helps rape victims, aids domestic violence victims and guards against modern day slavery, a scourge that refuses to go away in the UK and elsewhere It has even protected those in care, shielded press freedom and provided answers for grieving families. But now with a working majority in Parliament it would appear David Cameron cannot wait to scrub this piece of legislation which offers protection to the man in the street. The wave of public protest has forced the government to stay the axe But for how long ? Take away the protections offered by the Human Rights Act is also politically naïve. It will remove at a stroke the moral authority Britain enjoys when we engage with other countries. What sort of message would the we send to brutal dictators across the world if we abandoned our human rights’ obligations? One cannot help feeling David Cameron cares little about the rights of the individual and is obsessed with taking power back into the hands of the state It is hard to say whether he is driven to do this through a pathological desire to control everything or simply a need to placate his back bench MPs. Liberal Democrats in Government fought hard to stop the Tories trashing our human rights laws. No surprise then that the two people hoping to take over as the next leader of that Party agree that they must do everything they can to protect the legislation at all costs
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Faulty phone charger kills five BCC - Bringing people family members in Yorkshire in tune with each other A faulty phone charger cost the lives of five people from the same family, who consequently died in a blaze, caused by the charger, in Sheffield, South Yorkshire. The fire killed Amaan Parwaiz Kayani (7), Adyan Parwaiz Kayani (9), nine-week-old Minahil, their aunt, Anum Parwaiz (20) and their grandmother, Shabina Begum (53). The incident took place in April 2014, and it is believed that the fire started shortly after the family went to sleep. Firefighters had described the fire as “ferocious”, adding that it was the biggest loss of life in a calamitous fire for six years. One of the family members, Sadaf Parwaiz's mobile phone was on charge, when she noticed flames sparking by the electric sockets in the living room. She said, “I saw a sparkle at first near the sofa where the
electrical things were. At first I didn’t think it was a fire, I thought it was a toy flashing.” She also mentioned
From left: Adyan Parwaiz Kayani (9), Amaan Parwaiz Kayani (7), and nine-week-old sister Minahil
The inquest in Sheffield were told how the grandmother of the children, Shabina Begum unlocked the door before r u n n i n g upstairs to get the children. Coroner C h r i s Dorries said, “Your mum had an opportunity to escape from the Anum Parwai and Shabina Begum house but she was very brave, wasn’t extinguish the flames. she?" “She tried to put it out Parwaiz replied, “Yes. The fire was producing a lot of smoke. It got to the electric equipment and caused an explosion then all the lights went out." The inquest also heard that 7-year-old Amaan's body was found under a bunk bed in his attic room by the firefighters. The Fire Officer for South Yorkshire Fire stated that “children often try and hide and find a place of safety when they are scared. It’s a natural reaction to the danger they are in." with her own hands then went to the kitchen to get The inquiry into this some water, but I didn’t case still continues. see where she threw it." how she tried to douse the flames with a cushion and called her mother, Shabina Begum for help when she was unable to
1 foot long rodent found inside Indian restaurant
A giant rat was found in an Indian restaurant in H u t h w a i t e , Nottinghamshire, which led to the owner, Kumud Roy's prosecution and ban. The rat was a foot long and was found caught in a trap at Rani Indian Cuisine. Kumud Roy was also given a hygiene prohibition order and a 300 hours community penalty. Ashfield District Council officers visited the premises in June 2014 and found that there were rodent droppings, live and dead flies, as well as bait trays around the preparation table. They also found that the refrigerator in the middle preparation room was dirty and contained soiled food and badly sealed containers. It was later revealed that the staff at the restaurant had not completed
Rani Indian Restaurant in Huthwaite, Nottinghamshire
food hygiene training. Roy pleaded guilty to 11 offences. While sentencing Roy at Nottingham Crown Court, on 26th March 2015, Judge Godsmark QC said that the A massive rat was found inside the premises were restaurant
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
A new concept, the British Carnatic Choir, which aims to unite diverse communities through music has been launched. The British Carnatic Choir, or BCC, which is the first of its kind in the UK, is the brainchild of Dr Chithra Ramakrishnan, one of the country’s finest Carnatic vocalists and Artistic Director of Shruthi UK, a Solihull-based South Asian arts and culture organisation. It aims to create and explore choral singing in South Indian classical music in the UK. Carnatic music is a system of classical music associated with the southern part of the Indian subcontinent, specifically four states: Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu. It is usually performed by a small ensemble of musi-
From left: Mr JK Sharma, Dr Chithra Ramakrishnan, Lord Mayor of Birmingham Cllr Raymond Hassall, Chitravina N Ravikiran
Bates PhD, lecturer in Ethnomusicology and Popular Music Studies at the University of Birmingham. BBC Asian Network presenter Ashanti Omkar provided her contribution via Skype. Addressing the audience, Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Lib Dem Perry Barr Councillor Ray Hassall said:
Ramakrishnan, who was interviewed on Nihal’s show on BBC Asian Network on the eve of the formal launch, and said he was pleased that this pioneering concept had particular focus on children and young adults. He also urged the local and regional media to support this diversity initiative. The BCC aims to identify and recognise people,
Guests at the official launch of the British Carnatic Choir
cians, consisting of a principal performer (usually a violinist), a melodic accompaniment (usually a violin), a rhythm accompaniment (usually a mridangam), and a tambura, which acts as a drone throughout the performance. The event last Friday at the Greater Birmingham Chamber was inaugurated by Chitravina N Ravikiran, a world-renowned composer and scholar in Carnatic music. The two-hour programme included a conversation on the background to Carnatic music and its similarities with world music between Chitravina and Dr Eliot undoubtedly dirty and he was surprised that there had not been any public health issues. On the other hand, Godsmark noted that there had been an improvement since the inspection. Kumud Roy is not permitted to participate in the management of the Rani or any other food business until the order has been lifted.
“As First Citizen of a multicultural, multi-racial city, it gives me enormous pleasure to attend this launch, as one of my first events as Lord Mayor. I congratulate Dr Ramakrishnan on her concept and I hope it is embraced by as many people as possible as by doing so I feel it will bring together people and communities and make our city even greater and richer for its ever-growing diversity.” Also in attendance at the formal launch were: Mr JK Sharma, Indian Consul General in Birmingham; Jasbir Wouhra from East End Foods; Her Majesty’s Deputy Lieutenant of West Midlands, Satinder Kaur Taunque OBE and her consort Jagjit Singh Taunque; Birmingham City Council Culture Officer Roxanna Collins; Piali Ray OBE, Director of SAMPAD; Davinder Prasad, General Secretary of Coventry-based BOPA and our Senior News Editor Dhiren Katwa. Dhiren, in his speech, on behalf of our publications, congratulated Dr
particularly children and youth, of all abilities and from all walks of life who share a common passion to create a British Carnatic Community, one which reflects the multicultural mosaic of Great Britain. It aims to complement Prime Minister David Cameron’s British Values in an attempt to encourage all citizens to respect each other’s ways of life and to celebrate good work, through the sounds, words and pictures of the BCC. Earlier this year, Shruthi UK hosted an event to mark International Women’s Day, also a free Bharatnatyam dance workshop in support of World Autism Awareness Day 2015, working with Special Schools across the West Midlands. Shruthi UK, which this year celebrates its 10th anniversary, conducts one to one sessions and a series of workshops in Carnatic music and Bharatnatyam dance for children and young adults. To find out more visit www.shruthiuk.com
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
The Journey of a Legend Stellar International Art Foundation and Shapero Modern are pleased to have completed a successful exhibition of works by the late, great MF Husain at Shapero Rare Books in conjunction with India Art Week, June 2015. This was Stellar International Art Foundation’s first London exhibition and featured heretofore-unseen Paintings and Drawings from within Stellar’s own collection over the three floors of this longstanding Mayfair Institution. The presentation preceded the Indian Art Auctions which were also on view, reinforcing an active programme of Indian art in the community during this summer season. Stellar International Art Foundation has the largest collection of MF Husain’s works outside of the estate – making it the most important warden of his oeuvre. Work from The Collection spans his entire career and includes large, and sometimes entire, bodies of some of his most significant series including Ramayana, Our Planet Called Earth and most importantly, Maria. This was the first true survey of the Artist’s work from across his career and various media practices ever to be staged in London– one of the cities he called his home in his later years. Alongside the paintings and drawings from the collection, visitors were able to preview Stellar International Art Foundation’s seminal publication on the artist: MF Husain: The Journey of a Legend. This raisonné is not only the first since the artist’s demise, containing
Guests at the exhibition
Sudhir Choudhrie, his wife Anita Choudhrie, Son Dhairya and his wife Karina, Bhanu with his wife Simrin
critic Kishore Singh. Husain was himself a scholar of Indian history and philosophy, and it is fitting for his work to appear alongside the maps, atlases, and studies of his native land amidst Shapero’s rare, vintage holdings. Guests at the vernissage included the Choudhrie fami– Kishore Singh, MF ly, famed artists Husain: The Journey of a Paresh Maity and Burman, Legend, August 2014 Jayasri Silvia von Ballmoos, Princess Ingrid Frankopan, London plates of the over 250 based artist Hugo Dalton works within Stellar’s coland other collectors of lection, but includes Husain from London and important new scholarabroad. ship on the Artist as presented by the research and Photo Courtesy: Stellar International Art Foundation and IES Photography interviews of curator and “Husain’s work has a monumentality that this generation cannot hope to grasp, being close to the subject and from seeing the artist up close. In decades to come, he will be studied for each brush stroke and every tone of colour, for his subjects and his inspiring vision. He will move beyond mere markets, into the realm of the great artists of the world.”
UK's oldest man celebrates 111th birthday
the invention Age is just a number of colour televiand Nazar Singh has sion. He has just proved that. He also witnessed celebrated his 111th the invention birthday on 8th June of the modern with a pint of beer car, mobile and whiskey chaser. phones, comHe believes the secret puters and the to his longevity is due internet, as to a healthy lifestyle, well as seen plenty of sleep and a women get the dose of his favourite right to vote, whiskey. He is the fall of Nazi thought to be Germany, the Britain's oldest man. beginning and Nazar Singh was the end of born on 8th June Apartheid and 1904, in Punjab, the dissolution India, and has had an of the Soviet eventful life. He has Union. experienced living S i n g h through the two received a letWorld Wars, the Titanic disaster, the Nazar Singh celebrated his 111th birthday on ter from HM Queen Elizabeth first moon landing and 8th June 2015
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
20th anniversary of Indian art celebrated Spriha Srivastava
A South Asian 0and Contemporary Art sale took place last week to mark the 20th anniversary of Indian modern and contemporary art at Christie’s. The sale was led by the recently discovered self-portrait of Amrita Sher-Gil, painted by the artist at the age of 18, in 1931 when she was living in Paris. Amrita Sher-Gil was a pioneer in the history of modern Indian art, and in the 28 years of her brief life was a revolution personified. Born in Budapest in 1913 to a Hungarian mother and Indian father, Sher-Gil was a tour de force in the landscape of Modernism in British India. Living between India, Hungary and France, Sher-Gil painted the life of people and her surroundings with an intensity that remains unparalleled in modern Indian art. Her talent for the arts was discovered very early on, and in 1929 at the age of 16 she moved to Paris to study with Lucien Simon at the prestigious École Nationale des BeauxArts. Celebrating her achievements and contribution to modern Indian art of 172 documented works, the Indian Government recognised her as a National Treasure artist in 1972. The majority of her works are in the collection of the National Gallery of Modern Art in New Delhi. It is truly a privilege to discover a painting by Sher-Gil, which was previously unknown to her collectors and admirers, and to offer it the world stage it deserves. The majority of the works offered in this auction are derived from pri-
vate collections and have not been seen in public for decades. The sale comprised 76 lots which went on public view from June 5th. A number of other paintings were included in this sale. Another art work in the collection is from Maqbool Fida Husain (1913-2011), who has been called the ‘Picasso of India.’ He painted the present monumental canvas for the Venice Biennale, where it was exhibited representing India in 1956. During the 1950s, Husain explored the forming iconographies of newly independent India, including the Modernist idiom of pastoral idylls. Husain painted few works of the scale and ambition of the present painting, which has been in private hands in Italy for many years. The work included in the art work sale evokes a sense of village life, depicting women at work and powerful patriarchs as symbols of hope and optimism. Then there was an art work from Vasudeo S. Gaitonde who was recently the focus of a prestigious retrospective exhibition at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York. The painting included in this exhibition is dated 1970 and is a richly contemplative work that has remained in the same collection since its purchase in 1971, and has come to auction for the first time. Handpicked from some of the best names, the exhibition brought together exclusive paintings from the Indian and contemporary world. Syed Haider Raza (B. 1922), one of the
founders of the Progressive Artists’ Group, painted Haute Provenance in 1961. The painting came from a private American collector, whose family acquired it from a gallery in Palo Alto, California in the early 1960s. A very fascinating painting included in the exhibition was from Bharti Kher. She was born in England in 1969, emigrating to New Delhi in the early 1990s. As an expatriate, she examined Indian culture from the 'outside looking in,' commenting on class, mass culture and everyday life. Kher began working with bindis in 1995 and reconceptualises this mundane yet culturally-charged object, a dot commonly worn on the forehead by Indian women, associated with marital rites, religious and cultural practice. By appropriating this image for the creation of an artwork, Kher comments on the mechanisation and commercialisation of an item also viewed as deeply traditional. Kher creates this paradoxical Peacock from a multiplicity of bindis, a symbol of tradition, modesty and spirituality. In projecting the bindi onto such a scale, Kher aggrandises questions of identity, gender and race in globalising India. This work was part of a private Spanish art collection and was offered with an estimate of £50,000- £ 70,000. While it’s tough to mention each and every work, it’s important to note that all these art work are extremely precious to our heritage and to the contemporary art world. A great display and tribute to the stalwarts.
Let us know what you think. Email Spriha at email@example.com
II on his 100th birthday, and has been receiving one every year since, along with an annual letter and phone call from the Department For Work and Pensions to see how he is. Nazar Singh moved from Punjab to England in the mid 60s, where he worked in foundry, in Walsall, where he lived for almost 25 years. He then retired to Sunderland in 1989. Singh has never had an operation and has perfect hearing. He also
retains some of his original teeth. He likes to drink milk, almond oil and regularly eats fruit. His family had nearly lost him when Singh recently suffered from an infection, but he managed to recover. His son, Chain Singh Gill (62) said, “We thought we had lost him because he had an infection but, thankfully, he is recovering now. It’s the care he gets and the food he eats that are most important. He doesn’t eat junk food and that’s
what has kept him alive. I’m in contact with him, sometimes twice, every single day on the phone and he’s in good spirits.” Nazar Singh has nine children, 34 grandchildren and 64 great-grandchildren. He was married to his wife, Narajan Kaur, for 70 years before she passed away 12 years ago, at the age of 90. Asian Voice wishes Nazar Singh a ve r y happy b ir th day with ple nty mo re t o co me.
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
A captivating journey of love, motherhood and sacrifices Rupanjana Dutta
On 3rd June, actor and author Meera Syal, celebrated the release of her third book, The House of Hidden Mothers with a star studded launch party at Soho’s exclusive Union Club. Amongst the guests were Syal’s husband and longtime collaborator Sanjeev Bhaskar, actors Richard E Grant, Maureen Lipman, Adrian Lester, Kabir Bedi and Nitin Ganatra, author Anthony Horowitz, the High Meera Syal celebrates the Commissioner of launch of her latest novel The India His Excellency House of Hidden Mothers Ranjan Mathai, it online. You can get a comedians Jo Brand and lot of factual stuff online. Lenny Henry as well as Big part of my research Melvyn Bragg, Matthew was depending on a couWright, Anita Rani, ple who had 2 children Nikki Bedi and Twiggy & by Indian surrogacy and Leigh Lawson. that was really invaluSyal wrote The able,” she added. House of Hidden Women who aspire to Mothers after sixteen be mothers, those who years since the critically are unable to bear a child acclaimed Life Isn’t All or people who do it for Ha Ha Hee Hee. Never the money or those who one to shy away from difdon't want to be mothers ficult topics, in an excluat all- this book is not sive interview with Asian about surrogacy alone- it Voice discussing surrogais all about women's bodcy as a subject, she said, ies and choices they “With many ‘late-mothmake. It is a story of two ers’ or infertile couples journeys, blending into returning to India in one, that of gains and search of surrogates, losses, sacrifices and sucthere are now roughly cesses, also touching 3,000 clinics that provide upon issues of Nirbhaya, in vitro fertilisation in the fights of both genders India. Every year, the for equal honour for country sees anywhere women and the continufrom 100 to 300 surroous struggle against sexgate pregnancies, making ual harassments. it the surrogacy capital of Though Meera the world.” emphasised that she had Taking on such a delno particularly fond icate topic is no easy character in this book, feat, but Syal’s powerful Dhruv incidentally novel is underpinned by seemed to be a personal female friendship, mothfavourite, and Shyama- a erhood and love. Armed reflection of the author with the unique ability to herself. connect with her audiWhat's next for The ence through compelling, House of Hidden honest storytelling, Mothers? Will there be a Syal’s novel draws the film, a play or a televireader in with Shyama’s sion series? A jubilant familiar perception of Meera added, “There Modern India and identidefinitely will be a televity, taking the reader on sion series. The right an emotional journey have already been alongside the novel’s bought...” But when protagonist. asked if she will play any Surrogacy remains of the roles in that series, quite a touchy and she added, “Who knows, tabooed subject amongst I may be too old to play Asians. Not many know any of the roles, by the how India is the surrogatime it is made.” cy capital of the worldWhile Syal is on a providing couples a hope break till she starts writto complete their family. ing her next book in It is apparent that Syal 2016, we wish the author has put in a lot of all the best for The research behind this House of Hidden topic, but it was surprisMothers- a captivating ing to find out that most journey of relationships, of it was gathered love, motherhood and of through internet “I did sacrifices in a cross culnot travel to India. Most tural scenario- a book of the people who worth reading by all. research for surrogacy do
Royals join the Gurkhas to mark 200 years of the regiment
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
The Queen and other members of the Royal family joined hundreds of Gurkhas marking the regiment's 200 years of service to the British crown. The evening that was one of the highlights of a year of celebrations marking this anniversary, was organised by the Gurkha Welfare Trust, had around 1400 guests, and was held at London's Royal Hospital in Chelsea. The evening featured battle re-enactments and musical performances by the Band of the Brigade of Gurkhas. The victims of the recent Nepal earth-
Prince Charles - Colonel-in-Chief of the Royal Gurkha Rifles - and Prince Harry - who lived with a Gurkha battalion in Afghanistan at the 200th anniversary
from 1948 to 1967 – Cyprus, the Falklands, Kosovo and Hong Kong and more recently in Iraq and Afghanistan. They have received 13 Victoria Crosses between them during their years of service. But their numbers have come down from a peak of 112,000 men during the Second World War to about 3,500. Around 28,000 enter into the selection procedure for just over 200 places each year. Gurkha soldiers come Joanna Lumley with performers as the Brigade of Gurkhas from tight knit communicelebrated 200 years of unswerving loyalty to the Crown ties where mutual respect and trust are instilled Afghanistan in 2007. The quake were also rememfrom an early age. The Mail reported that he conbered in a minute's majority of Gurkhas are gratulated Sgt Pun, 35, silence. On 25 April, in a either Hindu or Buddhist, after he was awarded the terrible earthquake more and the Regiment Conspicuous than 8000 people lost observes the Gallantry Cross their lives in Nepal. A secappropriate for single-handond tremor was felt on 12 religious festiedly defeating May. vals. The most up to 30 Taliban This event was attendnotable in the fighters who ed by many dignitaries, annual calenattempted to including the Queen, dar is Dasain, storm his conPrince Philip, Prince which is a trol post in Charles, Prince Harry, major event Helmand in the Sultan of Brunei and with long estab2010. actress Joanna Lumley. lished and Sgt Pun said: While Prince Charles is colourful ritu'This is a great known to be Colonel-inals and tradiway to show the Chief of the Royal Gurkha tions. One of younger generaRifles, Prince Harry the strengths of tion what the believed to have befrienda Gurkha batGurkhas have ed the Gurkhas in talion on operadone.' Afghanistan. Captain tions today, and P r i n c e Dillikumar Rai, of the particularly in Charles, as Royal Gurkha Rifles, had Afghanistan, is patron of the the prestigious role of carthe ability of Gurkha Welfare rying the Queen's Six-year-old Swechya Joshi, the daughter of a Trust, reportedly serving Gurkha in the British military, presented the the soldiers to Truncheon at the pageant. understand culsaid it was right Queen with a 0bouquet of flowers at the event Harry was reunited tural nuances, 'to recognise and with Sgt Dipprasad Pun and to empathise with The name Gurkha celebrate these remarkon this occasion, who he people in conflict zones. comes from the hilly town able men and their served with in Garmsir, Unforgiving in battle, the of Gorkha, in Nepal, from soldiers are equally generwhere their kingdon ous and warm hearted to expanded. More than those who are affected by 200,000 Gurkha soldiers conflict. went on to serve in the Their national weapon British Army in the two is kukri- a knife carried by world wars – with 43,000 Gurkhas, used as work losing their lives. tool, used for all means of The Royal Gurkha every day business in hill Rifles currently have a communities. Every jungle role Battalion perGurkha has at least two manently based in Brunei kukris; one for ceremonial and a Light Role Battalion purposes, and one for in the UK. All Officers are every day use. expected to speak Nepali, Maintenance of the kukri besides fluent English. is a key part of daily rouOver the past 50 years The Queen and the Sultan of Brunei look on at members of tine, and it is kept sharp they have served in the Brigade of Gurkhas as they leave the pageant to and clean at all times. Malaysia and Borneo – celebrate 200 years of Gurkha service to the British Crown extraordinary service to our country.' He said, “'The Brigade of Gurkhas is more than just a fighting force, it is also - in every sense of the word - a family. “As with every family, they have lifetime responsibilities to one another and especially in times of great need. This has been painfully illustrated by the appalling earthquakes which have recently struck Nepal, with devastating consequences across the traditional Gurkha heartlands. “As part of the wider Gurkha community, we share in these responsibilities and I am constantly humbled by your ongoing support.'
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Rani Singh, Special Assignments Editor
The British-Trained Indian Artist - Teacher, Sujata Singh Sujata Singh is a talented artist and visual arts teacher, instructing the I n t e r n a t i o n a l Baccalaureate Diploma Program at The British School, New Delhi. Together with her colleagues, she has taken the British School Art Department to high levels and it is now one of the best in India. Sujata, daughter of distinguished former Indian High Commissioner to London Dr. I. P Singh, went to school in Khartoum, Sudan. She took an Honours BA at Lady Sri Ram College, Delhi University, before doing an A level in Art and Pre-Foundation Course at Camden Arts Centre. Then she did a Foundation Course at Central School of Art and Design, London. This was followed by a three- year Diploma Course in Graphic Design and Illustration at The Wimbledon School of Art and Design, University of
the Arts, London. In 2007, Sujata did a one year Diploma Course in History of Art and Culture of India, National Museum, New Delhi. Sujata soon became well established as an exhibiting artist in India and abroad. Recruited by the British School in Delhi, she has been able to pass on her learning to her students. She travels the world on behalf of the British School in order to
study the latest trends in the art world and absorb international influences. How does Sujata feel about the world of illustration, and what is it, precisely? She said, “As an art student in London in the mid- eighties, ‘Illustration Art’ seemed the most obvious and attractive choice to specialise in. Editorial Illustration was at its peak and illustrators of the time were taking risks.
The flexibility of themes and wide- ranging content that an Illustrator could access, was for me, the most attractive and inspiring aspect of the genre. As someone who loved drawingto visually express myself and my inner creativity as well as to depict the world around me through lines, doodles, observations and sketches- illustration seemed a natural progression in the development of my personal artistic language.” Sujata has designed and illustrated for magazines like Link, for designer Ritu Kumar and for an animation series; “Children with Indira Rana.” She also designed and illustrated for Jazz India, and for a project for the Government of India’s “The Rural Postal Life.” She has also illustrated Vikram Seth’s poems. Sujata’s work is now part of private collections across the world. We asked her about the challenges of establishing herself in India. “There were huge challenges. Nobody in Delhi really understood what illustration was. Publishers and editors knew about cartoonists but did not really know how to 'use' illustrators or how to exploit the impact of images created for written pieces.
It was also a very unprofessional environment. It was difficult to contact editors and publishers directly to show them my portfolio, there was low payment, etc. Most editors lacked a visual sensibility and were unwilling to take risks.
“illustration seemed a natural progression in the development of my personal artistic language” Sujata Singh A meeting with Aroon Purie of India Today changed everything. He asked me to get in touch with the editor of his children's magazine- Target. This was Rosalind Wilson who was an English expat working in India. She gave me a job immediately. Through her I met editors, writers and publishers, many of whom I still work with. There followed a boom period for illustrators with a burgeoning of travel magazines, financial and business magazines and newspapers and of course fashion and lifestyle publications as India liberalised in the late 80s and 90s. Book publishing also mushroomed and I did a number of book covers and children's books for the newly launched Penguin India.” Sujata has exhibited in
London, Paris, and the International Festival of Cartoon and illustration, Sierre, Switzerland. Sujata was one of the Indian Illustrators for children at the International Children’s Book Fair in Bologna and also took part in an Exhibition of Indian illustrators at the Indian International Centre, Delhi. She finds illustration in India on the uptick. “Illustration went through a low phase in India with the easy availability of ready- made digital imagery but things are now improving. There is an acknowledgement of the value of commissioning original images to accompany articles and short stories in publications. It is not difficult to find work in book publishing, advertising or in design firms. Teaching is a great option as you get a steady income and have vacations to work on projects or commissions. Being an artist is tough- building up a body of work, finding a gallery that believes in you and then hopefully manages to sell your work can be frustrating and lonely work. Thankfully with the internet it is now simpler to share one's work with a wider audience and sell on-line. I am still to explore this option, though!”
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The India Overseas Trust
I’d like to take this opportunity to congratulate your columnist Dhiren Katwa who has been covering stories across the Midlands and beyond for many years now. I’m an avid reader of Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar and have been for many, many years. My reason for getting in touch was this: Some time ago Dhiren covered a series of stories about The India Overseas Trust and how he had requested the Committee to provide accounts. I was just wondering if these accounts were ever provided. If these were, have I missed the coverage? If the accounts haven’t been provided, then has the charity provided an explanation as to why they’ve not released the accounts. I was just intrigued, that’s all.
Congratulations and a big “thank you” to AV and GS for providing a detailed account of the diksha ceremony of Bhanwarlal Doshi, a Delhi billionnaire. It makes you wonder what inspires someone to give up his $600 million worth of business empire, to renounce all luxuries and comforts that money brings with it and take on the harsh life of a Jain ascetic. A person strives all his life in pursuit of wealth and monetary prosperity only to give them up for spiritual wealth and seek to attain moksha, Jainism’s ultimate aim. Moksha or nirvana is the liberation of the soul from the eternal cycle of birth, death and re-birth. Bhanwarlal was the owner of DR International, one of India’s largest plastic manufacturers, with a fortune that until recently ranked him as one of India’s richest 100 people. It must be noted that Jains have a long association with finance and commerce and have played a leading role in the economic development of modern India. The life of a Jain sadhu, a muni, is very tough where detailed rules regulate the way in which he may seek whatever meagre food which is offered to him by others, to walk bare feet and spend most of his time performing “samayik” or meditation. I am sure Bhanwarbhai will learn to overcome these hardships and face them resolutely and with detachment.
Jyotsna Thanki Former President, Hindu Council, Birmingham
Check progress please
Every week I am reading in the Asian Voice how the Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi, is going here and there all over world to keep India on progressive path. This is very commendable action. Prime Minister must also put time-table to his ambitious plans for India’s development, otherwise there is risk of plans sliding away. Vijay Joshi By email
UN Day of Yoga
On 21st June 2015, the whole world will celebrate first United Nations day of Yoga. The credit for such massive celebration must go 100% to Prime Minister Modi. He joins the rank of luminaries like Swami Vivekananda, Maharshi Mahesh Yogi, Srila Prabhupad, Brahma Kumaris, Sri Sri Ravishankar etc. who put Hindu religion and Yoga on the world map. Global recognition of yoga by international community is praiseworthy in spite of unsavoury labels attached by Christians and Muslims. Yoga as a health practice benefits all, irrespective religion, caste, creed, sex, or nationality. Some non-Hindu groups oppose the practice due to pathological hysteria to anything spoken by Hindus, BJP or Modi. Some Muslims counter Yoga practice by insisting that Hindus must reciprocate by performing “namaz” and “bandagee”. Not many Indians/Hindus have full knowledge of yoga to be assertively convincing. Hindus utter inane statement that those Muslims who oppose Yoga must leave India. Some Hindu/Indians forget that Sanskrit mantras generate positive energies. Non Sanskrit words from Koran can generate negative energies. Hindus must not bow and grovel for yoga to be accepted by anti yoga lobby. Purity and divinity must not be compromised to appease individuals or groups.
IIT Chennai is one of the top technological universities in India. It was started by the Indian government with the help of Germany. The recruitment is based on tests in all India basis on merit. It appears a certain percentage of seats are reserved for educationally backward communities. It is not surprising a large number of Brahmins from all parts of India study there. There are several Hindu spiritual study groups such as Vivekananda, Hare Krishna, Vyasur, vashist and so on operate in the campus. On the other hand there are several anti national right wing political groups and one such group is Periyyar Ambedkar circle.. E.V. Ramaswami Naikar who is the moving sprit of the Ambedkar Perriyar study circle (APSC), has done everything in his power to create deep schisms in the Hindu society in South India by his ‘Hate-Brahmins and Hate-Hindus programmes’ during the four decades 19401970. After the BJP came to power they are vocal in criticising the present government and invited Tessta Stesilvad and she criticised and insulted Modi government. Several anti Hindu and anti-Indian leaflets were struck in the campus. The group worked against BJP during the last election in the state. Arun Vaidyanathan By email
Donations and charity
Where was Jesus?
Recently there are so many religious social and charitable organizations in India and abroad appealing people to donate generously playing emotional card to help people of Nepal badly affected by earth quack for resettlement with giving assurance that all monies collected will be used solely for that purpose. Whenever disasters strike we feel pain and so sorry that our inner voice from heart tell us to help hence we donate. The big question is how much of the monies actually go to needy people? Many times we read and hear news that some people who are running organizations (not all) misappropriate donation for their lavish life styles and involved in scandals and scams and forged accounting to keep most of the donations for themselves. At the time of 2010 earth quack in Haiti one Hindu temple in Brampton, Ontario, Canada collected big donation and than reported to police that donation box was stolen. There are so much irregularities, power struggle and fighting going on in that temple that as per court order when they open any donation box police presence must be there. We strongly believe in Law of Karma and for bad Karma one has to pay sooner or later mostly in this life by loosing peace of mind, sound sleep trusted friends, relatives and their own family members fighting for properties acquired by illegal means and will keep donating.
It is an established fact that Jesus of Nazareth suddenly disappeared from home when he was 12 and came back at the age of 30. This period of 18 years is known as ‘the missing years’ of his life. On his return he began his religious mission which is now called Christianity. Where was he? There is plenty of evidence that he spent all these 18 years in India. Indeed a number of books have been published with authentic evidence to prove that he was in India Anyone with some common sense would recognise whatever he preached was based on what he learnt while he was away from home. In those days the most prevalent religions in India were Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism. It should be obvious whatever he learnt was from these religions. The Christians always talk about his preaching and teachings but maintain a complete silence about where he was during the missing years. Perhaps they are uncertain about the effect it would cause to the originality of Christian teachings and their authenticity. It would have been better if Jesus himself acknowledged the source of his teachings. In the modern world people are asking questions to find the truth about everything. It would be better for all concerned if Christians were to readily and openly accept that Jesus was in India and he got his spiritual insight in that country.
Suresh and Bhavna Patel Markham, Canada
Jatindra Saha By email
Dinesh Sheth Newbury Park, Ilford
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Dravidian Communalism in IIT Chennai
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National Yog Day
Yog really means any systematic and dedicated activity to achieve something physically, mentally and spiritually! Nowadays it loosely denotes physical training/exercise! Baba Ramdev called it Yog! Shri Narendra Modi, PM of India, also performs Yog daily at dawn to keep himself healthy, energetic and calm. In his first speech to the United Nations he proposed to keep a National Yog Day which was accepted by them as June 21. On that day at 7am he will demonstrate Yog on TV together with thousands of school children, government officials and other men and women! It would be a memorable Yog Day in the world! The human body is the highest stage of physical evolution but it is transitory and dies. Hence it can't be the aim of life. Next must be the mental stage. In this we should train and evolve our mind to attain nirvan! Nirvan means existence without vaan = body! That means we shed our human body, free our soul from the vicious circle of birth, life, death, old age, diseases and distress! Upendra Kapadia By email
UK and Immigrants
Over the years, UK has seen different kind of immigration but when Asians from Uganda were expelled in 1970, there was a huge uproar in the country. How would the country accommodate these so called aliens with altogether different culture, costume and religion? At the time, racial prejudice and discrimination was rampant. However, this hard working, law abiding community who had come to integrate won the heart and mind of the people by filling the job vacancies available and reviving the small independent failing businesses within a matter of time. Very successful back in Uganda, this proud community did not want to be burden to the state. The interwoven quality of fairness, honesty, hard work coupled with entrepreneur skill played pivotal part in bringing the vital change to the country. Whilst Labour was in power, during an economic boom, they opened doors to skilled migrants to fill the jobs. Student visas were issued without much vouching. The Labour failure is for two reasons: irresponsible immigration and irresponsible lending by banks, price of which it is still paying. The migrants, who were not lucky enough to get their visa extended, have not returned empty handed. They have defrauded Credit Card Companies and Banks in several thousands. UK is a fair, tolerant country. Its kindness mustn’t be taken as weakness. British Asian owes a lot to this country. Niranjan Vasant London
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Queen to honour high achievers from Commonwealth nations at Young Leaders Award
Three Indians (including two women), two Sri Lankans, a Pakistani and a Bangladeshi will be presented the inaugural Queen's Young Leader awards by Her Majesty at a star studded ceremony in the Buckingham Palace on 22 June. The awards have been set up by the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust in association with Comic Relief and Royal Commonwealth Society (RCS), will run over 4 years and the winners are chosen from across 53 Commonwealth nations each year. This year's ceremony will be attended by star footballer David Beckham and be hosted by Chairman of the organisation Sir John Major. A video from actress and humanitarian Angelina Jolie as well as the work of the Queen's Young Leaders will be shown on the night. As 2015 winners of this prestigious Award, the Queen's Young Leaders will receive a unique package of training at the University of Cambridge, where the mentoring and networking will be provided by British businesses, as well as a one week residential programme in the UK, during which the winners will collect their award from Her Majesty the Queen. With this support (which is not financial), Award winners are expected to continue and develop the amazing work they are already doing in their communities across the Commonwealth. 26 years old Ashwini
Angadi, 27 years old Akshay Jadhao and 24 years old Devika Malik from India, 26 years old Thejitha Saubhagya Ediringhe and 19 years old Kavindya Thennakoon, 27 years old Salman Ahmad from Pakistan and 26 years old Shamir Shehab are amongst the 60 winner who are travelling to the UK for the first time this week. Ashwini is visually impaired, offering education to disabled students from rural areas who face exclusion and discrimination, while Devika was born with hemiplegia, which paralyses half of the body. She promotes inclusion and raises funds for disabled people, promoting better access and equality for them. Akshay grew up in the rural farming region of Vidarbha, and launched education and skill courses to improve job opportunities for young people. Shamir set up Bangladesh Youth Environmental initiative and runs National Earth Olympiad, which educates students about climate change while Salman who has mobility problems cofounded the GADE Foundation to encourage young men and women to involve in enterprise. Experiencing the country's civil war, Thejitha set up Human Wing International and helps people to learn and communicate in different languages and Kavindya, who was raised by her mother, after her police officer father died, founded Without Borders, which aims to tackle the lack of quality education
and employment. The week for the achievers, will include a breakfast meeting with the Prime Minister at 10 Downing Street, a visit to the Twitter headquarter in Soho, a lunch with media executives at the BBC, awards at Buckinghum palace, dinner at St James's Palace, an induction in Cambridge University over two days, meeting with leading business brands in the UK, High Commission reception by Canada House, meeting at the C o m m o n w e a l t h Secretariat, visit to ten UK charitable and enterprise organisations and a final celebration on 26th June at the BT Tower. Dr Astrid Bonfield, Chief Executive of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust said: “We are very much looking forward to welcoming the first Queen's Young Leaders to London on the 22nd, for many of whom it will be their first visit to the UK. It will be such an honour to witness these exceptional young people receiving their awards from Her Majesty The Queen for their incredible work in their countries and across the Commonwealth. The Queen's Young Leaders programme discovers, celebrates and supports exceptional young people from across the Commonwealth. Nominations for 2016 opens on Monday 22 June at www.queensyoungleaders.com, 7pm onwards. Twitter: @Queensleader #QueensYoungLeaders #TheSearchIsOn
Former Guildford Councillor given suspended prison sentence Former Guildford Borough Councillor, Monika Juneja, has avoided a prison term after being convicted of forgery; she had lied about her qualifications and pretended to be a barrister. Monika Juneja was given a 14-month jail sentence at the Old Bailey Court, however, the sentence has been suspended for two years. On 11th May 2015, the 36-year-old former councillor had pleaded guilty to three counts of forgery, one of obtaining a pecuniary advantage by deception, and one of
Former Guildford Borough Councillor, Monika Juneja
pretending to be a barrister. While sentencing, Judge Gerald Gordon stated, “For a period of some 14 years, you have lived a lie about your qualifications and professional status,” Judge
Gordon said. “You have said that it started because of parental pressure that you felt under to succeed. “I’m satisfied also that you yourself wanted the status and the prospects of success. “Looking at the picture overall, it was status rather than financial gain that lies at the heart of what you did, although there clearly must have been financial gain.” Juneja was ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work "for the benefit of the public" in a year, and pay a victim surcharge.
Property secretly turned into hotel has been shut down A normal cul-de-sac home in east London, was shut down by officials after they found out that the residence was set up to secretly be an 18bed hotel. Neighbours were suspicious when they noticed bus loads of people arriving at the property in Romford. This twostar Tudor House accommodation received reviews on the hotel booking website, booking.com. One of the neighbours, Linda Burns expressed, "A couple of weeks ago we suddenly saw a lot of activity with taxis. One day a large party bus turned up. We saw lots of people coming and going. We just thought it was very oddthey looked like backpackers. Then I was over at the local shop and I saw three boys come in and they were very obviously Australian. Then there were more people and the front door was always open." There were many calls made by apprehensive neighbours which led to planning officers and fire brigade inspectors to raid the end-ofterrace property, and consequently shutting it
The hotel listing on booking.com
down. Booking.com still has the hotel in its list, however, it no longer allows visitors to book. Another website, Let's Book Hotel, removed the listing while hotels.uk.com still allows visitors to browse details for the hotel but does not allow room reservations. Havering's planning chief, Cllr Osman Dervish stated, "We have told the owner to stop using the property as a hotel as it does not have planning permission. We will continue to monitor the use and take enforcement action if necessary. Anyone who wishes to change the use of their property should make sure they obtain the relevant permissions before
they do so. Information about planning can be found on Havering Council’s website." The name linked to the house in historic planning documents is Amjad Ali. The Standard reported that Ali said, “I left the premises at the beginning of April so I don't know. "The property has been on the market for five years. Somebody has bought it- finished. I don't know what's going on- I live 180 miles away." However, Romford Recorder have reported him stating, “I know nothing about a hotel because I have rented out the property. I have given an AST [assured shorthold tenancy] and it is being investigated."
Mirror of Britain’s vibrant www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
The inauguration ceremony led by Deputy Mayor of Harrow, Cllr Rekha N Shah in presence of other dignitaries
On Saturday 6 and 7 June the Harrow Leisure Centre buzzed with excitement, as Asian Voice and Gujarat Samcahar hosted it's fifth and so far the biggest Anand Mela in the last four years. Over 6000 people gathered at Harrow Leisure Centre as determined shoppers went around enjoying the excellent display of Indian culture, aromas of Indian snacks and drinks, and the lively entertainment, showcasing some of Britain's best and biggest British Asian stars. MPs, Peers and local councillors were present for the inauguration and all proceedings through ticket sales and raffles went to St Luke's hospice- the chosen charity for this year. The main sponsor for the 2015 mela was Worldremit.
Thousands come together to celebrate Anand Mela in Harrow
Navin Shah AM, Cllr Ameet Jogia, Cllr Mina Parmar, Deputy Mayor Cllr Rekha N Shah, Bob Blackman MP, Cllr Ajay Maru and other guests
Picture shows CEO Robin Webb and some of the St Luke’s team
Carolina Rogelis from World Remit addressing the audience in presence of Lord Dolar Popat, Cllr Ajay Maru, Bob Blackman MP, Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP, Cllr Mina Parmar, Cllr Ameet Jogia, Lord Raj Loomba, Lady Loomba, Cllr Ameet Jogia, CB Patel and Kokila Patel
Visitors enjoying the Anand Mela
he mela that started from 10am onwards on both Saturday and Sunday, had long queues outside, as people streamed in to be a part of London's biggest summer mela of the area. It displayed a variety of stalls from different sectors- food & drink, education and entertainment, Health and Medical, Travel and Tourism, Banking and Finance, Fashion and Wedding, Electrical goods, Real Estate and many more. Visitors had opportunity to indulge in endless fun, do some shopping, enjoy the day's entertainment, eat some tasty food, meet near and dear ones or dance to their favourite Hindi songs. Compere for both days was Kokila Patel, Managing Editor of Gujarat Samachar. Entertainment included performances by wellknown artist Navin Kundra, singers Kishan Amin, Voice UK participant Vikesh Champaneri, Hemina Shah, Muhammed Fahad, Tauqeer Khan, Nalini Pattni, Jayden, Pritee Varsani, young dhol player Kivraj Gharyal, young Tabla player Mehul Shivji, dhol player Rasik Bhudia, dancers/performers from Archana
Singer Navin Kundra
Kumar Dance Academy, Honey Kalaria's Dance Academy, Darshini from Sanskriti Guru, Meera Salat Dance Academy and music therapist Alan Watts. This year's chosen charity was St Luke's hospice, for Harrow and Brent. The charity takes care for people whose illnesses are no longer curable, enabling them to achieve the best possible quality of life during the final stages of their illness. Pam Russell from the Hospice said, "St Luke’s Hospice was honoured to be the charity partner for the Anand Mela. It was a great opportunity to meet so many members of the community and to let people know about the free care that is provided by St Luke’s. We often find that people know about our In Patient Care, but are surprised by the care that is available to patients in their own homes and in the new Woodgrange Centre, which provides an extended range of treatments and therapies to patients who are living with incurable illnesses. “We were tremendously impressed by the wide range of buisnesses exhibiting at the Mela
Singer Kishan Amin
Singer Vikesh Champaneri and young tabla player Mehul Shivji
and by the range of entertainment on offer. It was great to see so many stalls decorated with purple balloons to show their support for the hospice. We would like to thank everyone who visited our stall and who supported the hospice so generously by donating, signing up to our Ladies Midnight Walk, or taking part in the Hospice Lottery. “Altogether the Mela raised over £10,000 for St Luke’s enough to fund over 160 home visits from our doctors and nurses, enabling our patients to be cared for in the comfort of their own homes.” On Saturday alone, Silver star charity parked their mobile diabetes van parked outside the venue, helping people with diabetes screening on the go. It is a registered Charity operating in the UK and India, that was launched in January 2007. The main role of the Mobile Diabetes Unit (MDU) is to carry out important diabetes testing in the community and to promote culturally sensitive healthcare, with particular regard to the high
Singer Muhammed Fahad
Music therapist Alan Watts
Dancer Darshini from Sanskriti Guru
Singer Pritee Varsani and dhol player Rasik Bhudia
and colourful communities
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prevalence of diabetes in the major towns and cities of Britain. Reaction from Mela attendees
Anu and Pratik Sheth, a young couple who travelled all the way from East London looked really thrilled as they gorged on some tasty golgappas. “We think this is great. The food, stalls, the entertainment- all look so nice. We just came across a stall selling 3 sarees at a steal away price. We have bought one for our mother, one for sister and one for me (Anu). We came to know about this Mela from my uncle who subscribes to Gujarat Samachar. We clubbed this with our family visit.” Mandeep Bal and Sukhdip Singh, carrying quite a few shopping bags, were standing at the St Luke's stall when I walked upto them asking how they are enjoying the mela. “It's lovely. We just saw Meera Salat perform, and wish we could bring Ba along with us. We spoke to your charity partners this year- and it is amazing how much you are doing for a good cause.” Amit Patel, who was visiting the Mela with his two children, wife and elderly parents said, “We are locals and have visited this Mela from year one. Must say quite impressed with the mela this year. However we would have liked it more if you could have had a separate play area for children. “My parents want to buy a flat in Gujarat and your property exhibition upstairs is quite helpful for research purposes.” Ketan and Pushpa Pujara, an elderly couple seemed enjoying every bit of the Mela. When asked what they liked the most about it, “It's the people, colour and extravaganza. We are old and spend most of our times alone. Such melas ensure we get to meet the larger community, sometimes old friends and it makes us feel happy. It's a welcoming break from our otherwise boring and mundane lives.”
The Affordable India show was a part of the Anand Mela and showcased properties from all over India. The main aim to organise the exhibition in Harrow was to ensure you do not have to travel far, bringing the developers near you. The show had some reputable developers exhibiting Indian properties. Asset India Ltd and Investor Decode, brought together this show to actively help buyers with all assistance even after the show. Audience enjoying performance by artists on the stage
Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP, Bob Blackman MP, Lord Raj Loomba, Mr Chakravarti, Lord Dolar Popat, CB Patel, Cllr Ameet Jogia and Deputy Mayor of Harrow Cllr Rekha N Shah inaugurating the Property Show Sponsor World Remit at their stall
Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP cutting ribbon and officially opening the Property Show on Saturday 6 June
Photo courtesy: Raj D Bakrania, Prmediapix
Mirava Vekaria from Honey’s Dance Academy
Singer Hemina Shah
Dancers from A K Dance Academy
Singer Nalini Pattni
Singer Tauqeer Khan
Young dhol player Kivraj Gharyal
Dancer Meera Salat from Meera’s Dance Academy
Visitors in consultation with exhibitors at the Property Show
Bose's mysterious disappearance to be discussed in London
The mystery of Indian freedom fighter, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose's death has remained unsolved even after seven decades of his sudden disappearance. Successive governments in India have maintained not to disclose secret files related to his death, saying it will create an adverse impact on India's ties with many foreign countries. A mass awareness campaign is being run in India, to gather public opinion in favour
Author Anuj Dhar
of declassification. The Indians living abroad, also feel that they cannot be left out of this movement. Therefore as a part of the annual lecture of the Netaji Subhas Foundation, UK, Anuj Dhar is invited to the UK and will deliver the keynote speech on 19 June 2015 at the Indian YMCA. Also present will be Ms Minakshi Ghosh, former researcher for Oxford University and translator of the book a Chalk Delhi, based on Netaji. Anuj a freelance journalist, RTI (Right to Information) activist and author of the best selling book, India's Biggest Coverup, has made this the aim of his life (and his colleagues of Mission Netaji forum) to push the government through public demand, RTI applica-
able to confirm his death. Dhar claimed that after India attained independence in August 1947, the Intelligence Bureau (IB) secretly at the behest of Government of India removed the parts of British report in which it had recommended to investigate Netaji's case further.
Netaji with Gandhi
April this year, Dhar, contions and court orders tradicted this saying on where applicable, to get August 16, 1945, Netaji the secret files declassified had left for Russia instead and let the country and of Tokyo. the world know the truth. But the news related to The aim of the session Netaji's death surfaced will be to create awareness after five days of the plane about Netaji's visions, crash. Dhar's book titled which are so relevant, 'India's biggest cover-up' even today, to try to claimed that there was no impress upon the British proof available to certify Government that Netaji Netaji's funeral took place. was a true Nationalist and According to Netaji's to create awareness grandnephew Sugata Bose amongst NRIs about the declassification movement and why is it necessary There will be satellite sessions at Cardiff on 21st June, Sunday, Cambridge on 23rd June, Tuesday and NS Bose as Gumnami Baba Reading on 26th and TMC MP, the family June, Friday. A felicitation members had approached of Anuj has been organthe Japan and Taiwan ised on 27 June, Saturday authorities in 1965, to at the Zoroastrian Centre, know the truth behind his Harrow, as a part of the mysterious death. Harrow Music Festival. Sugata also reportedly The disappearance of said that Netaji was well Netaji in 1945 prepared to take on On August 14, 1945, it Britishers. After news of was announced that Japan Netaji's death, a British had surrendered uncondispy agency conducted an tionally to the Allied investigation to know forces, effectively ending Netaji's whereabouts. The World War II. Following agency headed by senior this, on August 15, Netaji office Phillip Phinney, in boarded a Tokyo-bound its report, discovered that flight from Bangkok, Netaji was no more but which crashed. According there were no proofs availto a report by India TV in
Shah Nawaz Committee The government in 1955 formed the Shah Nawaz Committee comprising members from Netaji's family to probe his death. The panel in its report clearly stated that Netaji died in the plane crash. But Suresh Bose, Netaji's elder brother disagreed with the fact. He was of the view that Netaji has taken shelter somewhere in Soviet Union. Netaji imprisoned in Siberia There is another theory related to Netaji's death. It says that Netaji was imprisoned in Yakutsk Prison in Siberia. But there is no proof to certify this. Dhar reportedly said, "Netaji's wife died in 1996. She had said that Netaji was in Russia." Bose lived on as Gumnami Baba Another story is that Netaji changed his identity and lived on at Ram Bhawan in Faizabad till 1985 as a mysterious Indian hermit, Bhagwanji, also known as Gumnami Baba. Few years back Nizamuddin, a 102-year-old man claiming to be Netaji's drivercum-bodyguard claimed that the freedom fighter was not killed in an air crash but died as Gumnami Baba in Faizabad.
London celebrates 47th Rathayatra
On Sunday 14th June, the 47th London Rathayatra took place from Hyde Park till Trafalgar Square. The festival included talks about Krishna consciousness, bhajans, maha mantra meditation, spiritual question and answer and free vegetarian prasad for all. Rathayatra is organised by International Society for Krishna consciousness, founded by His Divine Grace A C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. European Rathayatra Dates in 2015: Paris - Sunday 28 June, Budapest - Saturday 4 July, Prague - Sunday 19 July, Birmingham - Sunday 26 July, Cardiff - Saturday 1 August, Leicester - Sunday 2 August, Dublin – TBA, Reading – TBA, Brighton - Sunday 13 Sept (TBC), Plymouth – Saturday 3 October, Glastonbury – Sunday 4 October
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Empowering Donors. Supporting Charities. Help us change the world.
What is Asian Charity Clarity? When you donate money to charities, how do you know you are giving it to the most effective ones? If you are a charity, how do you stand out and best showcase the great work you do? Empowering Donors. Supporting Charities. That's what Asian Charity Clarity is all about. ACC have come up with a special rating system which assesses a charity across 18 metrics for Financial Health, Accountability and Transparency, and Accessibility. We have 110 charities on ACC right now, and will have around 500 in July. Every week, we will publish a Top 10 list looking at different aspects of Asian charities.
Top 10 Charities for Trading Income
At ACC, we believe that trading revenue generates a more sustainable source of funding than relying on the philanthropy of a few large donors. These are the Top 10 Charities which are most depend on their revenue from trading activities, given by Charitable Revenue or Activities for Generating Funds divided by Total Income (latest year available). In some instances, if information on trading revenue and Total Income is available from different years, values may add to over 100%. 1. Basti Ram: 101% 2. Sivandana Yoga Vedanta Centre: 98% 3. Akshar Educational Trust: 97% 4. Hindu Sanskar Radio: 93% 5. Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan (Manchester): 89% 6. Kadwa Patidar Samaj (UK): 89% 7. YMCA Indian Student Hostel: 88% 8. Art of Living Foundation: 71% 9. Shree Kutchi Leva Patel Samaj: 70% 10. Shri Kanagathrukkai Amman (Hindu) Temple Trust: 70%
A hilarious Gujarati extravaganza is about to hit your city
After successfully entertaining the audience in the USA and India, Siddharth Randeria will be presenting his play, “Gujju Bhai Banya Dabang” in the UK. This play is an adaptation of an original Marathi play by Sachin Mote. Siddharth Randeria is a well known theatre artist and he is starring, as well as directing this hilarious Gujarati play, which aims to entertain you, as well as your family and your friends. He has been associated with over 80 theatre productions and is the only actor to have completed over 20,000 live performances on Gujarati stage. Randeria is considered as the most successful Gujarati Thespian with a career spanning 38 years and his most successful theatre production, “Lage Raho Gujjubhai”, crossed 800 performances in a span of 3 years. The play is about Jadgish Pandya (portrayed by Randeria) who is constantly nagged by his wife and son, who keep telling him that he
has not achieved anything in life. Pandya takes the nagging and complaints in his stride and replies back to them calmly, saying that he is waiting for the right opportunity. In a twist of fate, an abhorrent gangster is murdered in the Pandya's resident and this is when the comedy is set in motion. The play will be taking place at several venues throughout July. The dates are as follows: Saturday 18th July, Fairfield Hall, Croydon. Sunday 19th July, Athena Conference Centre, Leicester. Thursday 23rd July, Sattavis Patidar Centre, Wembley. Friday 24th July, The REP, Birmingham. Saturday 25th July, White House Venue, East Ham. Sunday 26th July, Harrow Leisure Centre, Harrow.
For more information, visit: www.safdarhussain.com or contact Nalin Patel: 07956 921 537
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and has been reappointed to this one. We are working to re-energise Human Rights, also looking at women’s liberties and the freedom of religion. Of course we have just started work on the policies and there will be much more to say.
Are there issues regarding cultural cohesion where the solutions may lie abroad? With freedom of religion, there is a huge cross-over in debate. As we get more globalised, these questions become more Motto: relevant, especially Any time a door’s for second been opened for you generation immimake sure the door grants who are remains open for othnegotiaters: ‘one hand reaching two competing ing up, one hand traditions. How do you reaching down.’ cope? How do you open up a dialogue? It gets even more interesting when you consider religious groups who want to preserve their practices and still live practically alongside each other such as Islamic and Christian groups: it is a growing conversation on an international scale.
Mandip Sahota Behind the Policy Making
Reminiscing about her arrival at the FCO (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) in 2012, Sahota stated a sense of wonder as she “walked up the ‘Grand Staircase’ with a mixture of pride and awe.” The main concern, she said, was “not race or gender” but whether she was “the only person to have not attended Oxford or Cambridge” and whether this would “fit the image of an archetypal diplomat.” Now a much valued asset to the ministerial department, she dispels more than one myth. As we talked about her journey – liaising with Baronesses Warsi and Anelay thereafter, her jet-set lifestyle, and the dynamic practice of policy making – we saw that working in government can be as thrilling as it is reachable: You are currently Private Secretary to the Minister of State. What does the role entail? I am the interface between the Minister and our policy departments. On the one hand you are there to help the foreign office achieve their goals through the Minister, but equally to help the Minister set their priorities, and occasionally get those pushed those through Whitehall. A lot of people don’t know what a Private Secretary actually does. The usual response is a very commercial idea of the position, ‘oh, you answer calls’ etc. What I do is at the very heart of government. I’m getting to know policy – how it applies internationally and domestically. I work particularly on Human Rights and Migration and am the Private office lead on those areas. The job consists of speech-writing, being a spokesperson for the FCO - for example during meetings at the House of Lords, occasionally acting as the gate-keeper, and negotiating on the Baroness’ behalf. Another great aspect is the travelling. I’ve been involved in Islamic finance when I was working under Baroness Warsi. We toured around the Gulf State, and also worked across South East Asia. I’ve attended meetings with the Sultan of Brunei, the Prime Minister of Malaysia, and met with the Pope’s repre-
sentatives in Vatican.
This is an eventful time in government. Could you tell us more about the direction you are taking? Well I am currently working for Baroness Anelay who was in the last government
Mandip with Kofi Annan
Were you always interested in Foreign affairs? I’ve had interest in politics from a young age and my father was very much behind that. I often muse that if somebody had informed me when I was younger that I could combine my love of politics and Human Rights, and told me that this profession was that of a diplomat’s, I could have transferred over much sooner. Because I was still finding my way, I took the more customary route of a legal career: I graduated in law, and found that very fascinating, later moving to NY, and going out into the legal industry before I came back to the UK and joined the civil service. It wasn’t an easy transition; sometimes you take a couple of steps back before you can move forward. A friend of mine pointed out that my interests seemed to converge in the direction of the foreign office. After seeing the advert in The Guardian, I joined the Home Office in 2008. I was interviewing refugees and representing the department in tribunals. It really opened my eyes to what was happening globally. Ultimately then, there are different routes to different positions and it just goes to show how you can tailor your career where there’s not one way of progressing. I’ve now gathered a wealth of experience across the public and private sectors.
What have been some of your proudest moments? Representing the UK at the United Nations in Geneva (see picture) and leading on the FCO’s work to honour the contribution of Indian soldiers to WW1. My role was to You are a Diversity and Equality lead on our approach and coordiChampion. Tell us more about nate an event at Lancaster that? House for members of the Ok so we organised a univerRoyal Household, sity road show where we Parliamentarians and reached out to people 'I want Military. I found it who would not normally inspirational to learn think about a career in to reflect the more about the the Foreign Service. Commonwealth This included travelling progress of contribution to to Yorkshire where I’m multiculturalism WW1 (not somefrom so that was quite thing we’re taught nostalgic and fun. I’m as it stands at school) and then also a role model for be able to reflect that the champion of differtoday' deep connection ence scheme that the between our countries to FCO has just launched, and help strengthen bilateral finally I founded the Sikhs in ties. Government network. This engages colleagues across WhitehallDo you have a Role Model? including parliamentarians in the House of Can I have two? My parents – they Lords - and is the first civil network for both said if they could give me nothing Sikh staff. We work with parliamentarians else, it would be the gift of education. I and figureheads abroad such as the look now at the work that I do across the Deputy High Commissioner in Punjab, world to champion women’s rights and David Lelliott. In the UK we’ve had a great know just how important education is to response- from officials in the police achieving your dreams. My mum is a department to the FCO home office so fighter, strong and not so much the silent type and I really look to my dad for his values. I’m lucky. They’ve instilled a strong sense of self-confidence, work ethic and belief that I can do whatever I put my mind to. Plus, they supported me and my love of the world (both the travelling and the politics)! that’s been fantastic. It’s about championing people of different backgrounds into more senior positions as well as fostering awareness at the top. It extends to showcasing work in the arts, business, and sports worlds, establishing a better relationship between our community and the government.
Is there a major goal you had in mind for multiculturalism? To have a government, inclusive of the networks overseas, that accurately represents modern Britain. For example, I currently work opposite the Old India office Council Chamber and I see that as a real reflection of how the city has changed for the better. The fact that I could work with Baroness Warsi, and accompany someone of a BAME background in such an influential role was equally inspiring in this respect. I want to reflect the progress of multiculturalism in the country as it stands today.
A wild-card question for you: Do you enjoy political sitcoms such as ‘The Thick of It’ or ‘Ambassadors’? I’d like to know how much of what is shown represents the actual office. (Laughs) I actually spent the weekend getting caught up on ‘House of Cards’ and it certainly isn’t as dark as all that! I’m also a fan of ‘Veep’ – it’s the American version of ‘The Thick of It’ - and I think they capture the humour of the environment: thinking about current affairs and how they might unravel, and those everyday absurdities that could apply to any workplace really. Finally, what are your hopes for the future? It’s very open to me, but a dream of mine is to become, or to witness for myself, the first female Sikh Ambassador. It would be a real reflection of the state of equality in the future. https://twitter.com/mandipksahota
Countdown to the Asian Achievers Awards has officially begun
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A launch reception was held on 12th June 2015 for the Asian Achievers Awards (AAA), organised by Asian Business Publications Limited (ABPL), which will be taking place on 18th September 2015. The Asian Achievers Awards is a star-studded event where the renown and crème de la crème attend; the launch reception in itself was no small affair. The Asian Achievers Awards has been taking place annually and this will be the 15th ceremony to be taking place. AAA recognises the outstanding work from the individuals from across all business and professions within the Asian community and acknowledge the accomplishments of the finest in the UK's Asian community. Each year, the awards illustrates and celebrates a certain aspect of society, and this year's theme will be uniforms and civil services. The business partner for the Asian Achievers Awards is Ernst & Young (EY), who are committed in building a better working world.
Lord Raj Loomba CBE from The Loomba Foundation
At the launch, the beer was sponsored by Cobra Beer, wine and soft drinks by Sun Mark Ltd, and the canapés by Ragasaan. Regarding the South Asian achievers and the awards, Publisher/Editor of Gujarat Samachar/Asian Voice, CB Patel said, “In the landmark 15th year of the Asian Achievers Awards, it brings me much pride to pay special homage to British Asian men and women who help to both run our country and also protect it. Their remarkable deeds can be lifechanging, and even lifesaving, but these people go largely unrecognised." The sponsored charity of this event is The Loomba Foundationfocussing on caring for women around the world.
Pradeep Sachdeva, Asst. General Manager, Bank of Baroda, London
The Loomba Foundation was established in the UK as a charitable Trust Deed on 26 June 1997, by Lord Raj Loomba CBE and his wife Veena, Lady Loomba. The inspiration behind The Loomba Foundation
Sanjay Bhandari, Partner, Fraud Investigation & Dispute Services (FIDS), EY
came from Loomba's late mother, Mrs Pushpa Wati Loomba, who became a widow at the early age of 37 and succeeded in educating her seven young children single-handed.
Invited guests listening to Lord Loomba speak about the Charity of the Year- The Loomba Foundation
Suresh Vagjiani, Property Consultant, Sow & Reap Properties Ltd
On speaking about his mother, Lord Loomba stated, “In 1992, my mother passed away and my business was running okay. So normally what people do is we set up ashrams, schools or hos-
pitals in memory of our beloved one, but I thought no, I'm not going to do that. If my mother did not have the money, if my mother did not have the resources, she could not have educated me. If she had not educated me, God knows what I would be doing today in India. So with that thought in my mind, I set up the charity to honour her, but with a focus to educate children of poor widows.” The awards is open to the general public to nominate for the achievers who they believe best deserves a recognition. The winners are selected by an independent panel of judges, comprising of eminent personalities. Readers can nominate in the categories of Uniformed and Civil Services, Entrepreneur of the Year, Professional of the Year, Achievement in Media, Arts and Culture, Achievement in Community Service, Woman of the Year, Sports Personality of the Year, Business Person of the Year, International Personality of the Year, and Lifetime Achievement Award.
Queen's Birthday Honour List: 2015
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Continued from page 1 KNIGHTS BACHELOR Pofessor Harshad Kumar Dharamshi Bhadeshia F. R.S., Tata Steel Professor of Metallurgy, University of Cambridge. For services to Science and Technology. (Cambridgeshire). Some of the example of his work include his new carbide-free steel for railway lines, now in use in the Channel Tunnel, the Swiss rail network and the French tram system. Professor Hussein Munir Pirmohamed. David Weatherall Chair of Medicine University of Liverpool. For services to Medicine. (West Kirby, Merseyside)
Professor Harshad Kumar Dharamshi Bhadeshia
Andrew Reddy. Gardener Household of The Duke of York.
i t s goal – to improve the educational opportunities and life chances of young people locally, nationally and globally. Ms Jaee Kamalnath Samant. Director Labour Market Policy, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. For services to the Reform of Social Policy. (London) Dr Hari Prasad Mohan Lal Shukla, OBE. For services to Interfaith and to the community in Tyne and Wear. (Newcastle upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear)
ORDER OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE
ORDER OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE, CIVIL
Ms Zarine Kharas. Founder and chief executive JustGiving.com. For services to Business and Charity. (London). Zarine Kharas is a former lawyer and City banker. She holds a BA in law from Cambridge University and was awarded the RSA’s Albert Medal in 2009 for ‘democratising fundraising and technology for charities’.
Harris Bokhari. For services to Young People and Interfaith Relations. (Epsom, Surrey) Atul Pathak. Managing director Appt Corporation Ltd. For services to Entrepreneurship. (Iver, Buckinghamshire). Appt Corporation Ltd is one of the leading McDonald’s franchisees in London. Atul Pathak came to the UK three decades ago and after running a number of small businesses, he set up Appt Corporation in 2003 and opened his first restaurant with McDonald’s in Hanwell, west London. He now has 26 McDonald’s franchises and employs over 2,000 staff.
ROYAL VICTORIAN ORDER Mohammed Saleh Faisel Choudhry. For services to the Royal Household. ROYAL VICTORIAN MEDAL
CBE Mrs Nusrat Mehboob Lilani, OBE. Founder and Chair, Women of the Future. For services to Women in Business. Dr Chaand Nagpaul. Chair General Practitioners Committee, British Medical Association. For services to Primary Care. (London). Dr Chaand Nagpaul has been a GP for the past 23 years. He has been a member of the General Practitioners Committee (GPC) since 1996, and has been a Local Medical Committee (LMC) member for over 20 years and vice-chairman for the past 12. Dr Nagpaul is a BMA Council member, a member of its Political Board, and GPC member on the BMA Public Health Committee and Consultants Committee, as well as being Honorary Secretary of his local BMA Division. Hamid Patel. Chief executive Tauheedul Education. For services to Education. (Blackburn, Lancashire). Tauheedul Education Trust (TET) is a notfor-profit multi-academy trust and is part of the Tauheedul Foundation (TF). TF’s roots in the Muslim faith have inspired
ORDER OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE, CIVIL MBE Mrs Parkash Ahluwalia. For services to the community in Derby. (Mickleover, Derbyshire). Mrs Ahluwalia has been a pioneer for race relations and has also been a lecturer, a translator for the Probation Service, and a team leader for Derby City Council's education department, based in St Mary's Gate. For more than 40 years, she has also been raising money at charity functions and was involved in the earliest Derby carnivals. Miss Rimla Akhtar. Chair Muslim Women’s Sport Foundation. For services to Equality and Diversity in Sport. (London). Rimla Akhtar is a committed, visionary and enthusiastic individual who thinks strategically and dynamically to
Aliya Jafri Azam
Halimah Gulzar Khaled
Ealing. For services to the Sikh community. (London) Zafran Mohammed. Director All 4 Youth. For services to Young People and the community in Birmingham. (Birmingham, West Midlands) Ms Harbans Kaur Sidhu. Volunteer Worker United Sikhs, London Borough of Ealing. For services to the Sikh community. (London) Helen Dhaliwal Issan Ul-Haque Ghazni Professor Hussein Munir Mrs Veena Soni. Head, Pirmohamed enhance the character and Error and Ethnic Minority and Traveller strength of her clients and Fraud and volAchievement Service, Gateshead teams. untary service to the community Council. For services to the comMrs Aliya Jafri Azam. For in Lancashire. (Blackburn, munity in Tyne and Wear. voluntary and charitable servicLancashire) (Newcastle, Tyne and Wear) es to Community Cohesion, parMs Rupinder Kaur Nandra. ticularly through the Al Khoei Senior International Projects and ORDER OF ST MICHAEL Foundation. (London). Aliya Programmes manager. AND ST GEORGE Jafri Azam's responsibilities also Birmingham Chamber of include organising inter-faith Commerce. For services to KCMG projects, community cohesion International Business. for the Al Khoei Foundation, as (Birmingham, West Midlands) Dr Francis Vijay Narasimhan well as Muslim representation Naran Bhimji Patel. For servRangarajan. Director Europe on the Brent Inter-faith network ices to the community and Foreign and Commonwealth and Brent SACRE. Community Cohesion in Cardiff. Office. For services to British Helen Chatterjee. Senior (Cardiff) multilateral diplomacy. Lecturer Biosciences amd head Mrs Pratima Sengupta. For of Research and Teaching, services to the community in East DIPLOMATIC SERVICE AND Cultural Public Engagement, Renfrewshire. (Giffnock, OVERSEAS LIST University College London, servRenfrewshire) ices to Higher Education and Ms Yasvanti Govindji ORDER OF THE BRITISH Culture. Lakhamshi Shah. Head of EMPIRE Zia Uddin Chaudhry. For Adoption and Improvement Kent services to Interfaith Relations County Council. For services to OBE in Merseyside. (Liverpool, Children and Families. (London) Merseyside) Kiron Kumar Sharma. For Satpal Dass. Chair and managing Amir Aziz Cheema. For servservices to Business and to charidirector Pacific Interiors. For ices to Young People through the ty in Berkshire. (Reading, services to British business in Scout Movement. (Bristol) Berkshire) India. Mrs Pratibha Dale. Mrs Harsha Yashwant Kumar Immigration Officer, Shukla. Chair, Lancaster and MBE Morecambe Hindu Society and Immigration Enforcement, Home Chair, Lancaster District Office. For services to Vulnerable Ms Elizabeth Mehta. Founding Communities Together Group. People. (London) director. Muktangan Schools For services to Interfaith Mrs Helen Dhaliwal. CoNetwork. For services to educaRelations. (Standen Park, Founder and director, Red Hot tion in India. Lancashire) World Buffet. For services to the Dilip Dayaram Tirathdas. Hospitality Industry. (Solihull, Retired Financial secretary BRITISH EMPIRE MEDAL West Midlands). Red Hot World Gibraltar. For public service in Buffet was founded in 2004 Gibraltar. BEM Helen Dhaliwal, along with her husband, Parmjit Dhaliwal. Red BRITISH EMPIRE MEDAL Bibi Tej Kaur Grewal. For servicHot World Buffet now has seven es to Interfaith Relations and the large restaurants across the UK, BEM Sikh community in Berkshire. employing 600 people. (Slough, Berkshire) Capt Amir Akbar Esmiley. Ms Christina Rosemary King Mrs Uttamjit Kaur Gujral. Surveyor in Charge Maritime and Fonfe. Founder and director The Head of Community Coastguard Agency. For services Sri Lanka Women’s Swimming Partnerships, London Borough of to Seafarers. (Chandlers Ford, Project. For services to women, Hounslow. For services to the Hampshire) tsunami survivors, and the comcommunity in Hounslow. Issan Ul-Haque Ghazni. For munity in Sri Lanka. (London) public and political service. Bashir Hasham. For services (Nottinghamshire) QUEEN’S POLICE MEDAL to the community in Orkney. Mohammed Aslam Hanif. For (Orphir, Orkney) services to Community Relations QPM Sadia Rahanara Hussain. in Teesside. (Ingleby Barwick, Services to Diversity Inclusion North Yorkshire) ENGLAND AND WALES and the Hussain Services to Mohammed Umar Hussain. Diversity Inclusion and the comAssistant chief Officer South Chief Superintendent Sunita munity. Wales Police. For services to Gamblin. Derbyshire Ms Taryn Khanam. Policing. (Newport, Gwent) Constabulary. Department of Energy and Mrs Halimah Gulzar Khaled. Nadeem Fazil Mir. Temporary Climate Change. For services to For services to charity and to chief inspector Greater Diversity in Government and the Community Relations in Manchester Police. Bengali community in East Nottingham. (Toton, *This is not a comprehensive London. (London) Nottinghamshire) list. If your name has been menMs Narpinderjit Mann. Arif Mukadam. tioned on this list, please send us Volunteer Worker and Administrative Officer HM your photograph and bio for Community Project Coordinator Revenue and Customs. For servfuture reference. Email United Sikhs, London Borough of ices to Combatting Tax Credits firstname.lastname@example.org
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
Dear Financial Voice Reader, Why are we addicted to games, and not to fruitful skills like learning to invest? What if the same thrills we got from Facebook games or Age of Empires we could get from investing and so learn a useful skill, and what if we got paid to do it? We love games because it involves skill, builds our confidence as we succeed. That is fun. We love to concentrate on such activities. We are in control when we play games. We don’t mind losing in games as long as we are learning a skill to get better. That is human nature. Well learning to trade and invest is the same. Look at my power list of the UK companies which added most returns for their shareholders this week, picked from the 100 largest British companies. What is interesting about the list is that these biggest risers which have powered ahead in the past week, see a property company as the one with the highest value score out of 10 ie its best value for the longer term. Others like Tesco beg the question are they rebounding from a slump, or having a longer term turnaround? If you want something which really teaches you a skill, is fun and unlike Candy Crush can make you money, learn to trade. But people are afraid to lose money. What if you got paid by the broker to trade? Check out http://etx.tradermind.com and http://inter.tradermind.com to get money to trade. You see trading gives you the same thing you look for in other activities. It gives that sense of autonomy, control, skill, achievement and that’s because nothing is guaranteed. Think about how boring a game would be if you always won. You have to turn around your thinking so it is not that you want to be guaranteed to win, but something that tests you. You need something which stretches you. You need an attitude that you are learning. That is why so many people don’t succeed in investing and trading. They too often think of it as something it isn’t. They need to see it as an opportunity to learn, to profit. All success is about attitude and the attitude to learn whether you should buy Sainsbury or Tesco. And then it is about concentration, like a game, about learning a skill, like a game, being in charge, like a game, being all down to you, like a game, spending time, like a game, sometimes losing, like a game. It is about all these things. So I hope with the right attitude of learning you will endevour to spend more time learning about investing and trading and less time on Candy Crush, or Age of Empires. But there is another reason. As we all get older, and the cost of living goes up and the incomes stay frozen, we need to learn these essential skills and even more importantly, to pass them on to our children.
Sheena Amin wins the Rising Star Award
Head of Content Strategy and Business Development in Virgin Media, Sheena Amin has won the Rising Star Award at the English Asian Business Awards this year. An Oxford alumni, Sheena has always been a supporter of charitable work and sits on the UK board of young enterprise as the trustee, since 2010. She launched the Netflix service on Virgin media's platform and is responsible for creating and implementing the content strategy for Virgin Media's TV offering in the UK along with executing business development opportunities such as commercial partnerships. “I am absolutely delighted to have won this award. I would like to thank everyone who voted for me and I consider it a great honour to have received this accolade”
Sheena with boxer Amir Khan
says Sheena. The English Asian Business Awards showcase the innovation, determination and achievements of English Asian businessmen and businesswomen at the forefront of their industries they also recognise individuals, businesses and organisations with vision, courage and creativity which have led to their success.
Cairn India to merge with Vedanta
The oil and gas exploration major Cairn India will be merged with natural resources arm Vedanta Ltd and Cairn shareholders will get one equity and one redeemable preference share of Vedanta, said industrialist Anil Agarwal. The transaction is intended to be completed by the first quarter of 2016, the group said. "The merger of Cairn India and Vedanta Ltd consolidates our position as India's leading diversified natural resources champion, uniquely positioned to support India's economic growth," Vedanta chairman Agarwal said. "The independent directors, at both Vedanta and Cairn India, unanimously recommend the proposed combination. This marks a significant
step towards achieving our stated long-term vision of a simplified group structure with alignment of interests between all shareholders for the creation of longterm sustainable value." The group, in a filing with stock exchanges, said the strategy remains
unchanged to continue focus on delivering attractive growth, sustainable development, long-term value for shareholders and to sustain strong dividend distribution. "Approximately 752 million each of equity shares and redeemable preference shares will be issued to the minority shareholders of Cairn India by Vedanta Limited pursuant to the merger," it said, adding: "No shares will be issued to Vedanta Limited or any of its subsidiaries for their shareholding in Cairn India." Vedanta Limited itself was created with the merger of Sesa Goa, Sterlite and Vedanta Aluminium. Cairn said in a stock exchange filing: "A meeting of Board of Directors of the company will be
held to consider and evaluate amalgamation of the company with Vedanta Limited." Vedanta took majority control of Cairn India for $8.67 billion in 2011 and holds 59.9 per cent in the latter through its various units. Merging Cairn India with itself would provide Vedanta access to the oil explorer's cash and help reduce its debt burden. At the end of March this year, Vedanta had total liabilities worth over Rs 990 billion on a consolidated basis. The Anil Agarwal-led Vedanta earlier this month hiked stake in its oil and gas exploration subsidiary Cairn India by nearly five perc ent for $315 million from a wholly-owned subsidiary Twinstar Mauritius Holdings (TSMHL).
Saurashtra offshore basin block (GS-01). “A draft farmout agreement is under review by both parties and the final outcome of these negotiations will be known in the near term. Following this, a priority will be to secure government approval of
the FDP and initiate planning for development,” the British company said. Hardy, along with RIL have relinquished block KG-DWN-2003/1 (KGD3) due to access restrictions imposed by the government. “In KG-DWN-2003/1 further progress in petroleum operations was impeded by defence restrictions imposed in October 2012. Since then the JV had continued to seek unrestricted access to the block without success. RIL and its JV partners finally decided to relinquish the block in line with government's policy,” RIL said in its annual report for 2014-15.
Britain's Hardy in talks to buy out RIL stake in Gujarat offshore block
British firm Hardy Oil and Gas is in talks to acquire 90 per cent stake in a gas discovery block in the western offshore off Gujarat owned by Reliance Industries. “Hardy continued discussion with the operator to acquire their 90 per cent interest and operatorship. General commercial terms have been agreed and a draft farmout agreement is under review by both parties,” the company said in their operational and financial review of 2015-15. It has also added the agreement for transfer and operatorship will be subject to the approval of the government of India.
Hardy currently owns 10 per cent stake in the block where the gas discovery Dhirubhai-33 (D33) was made in 2007. Claiming that reserves discovered so far are not economically significant, RIL has said it wanted to exit the Gujarat-
UK business leaders to speak to Ahmedabad-based entrepreneurs
In an annual seminar organised by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry and the UK-India Business Council on 14th July, students from the Ahmedabad University will get a first-hand opportunity to learn the perspective on entrepreneurship in the UK and see how their businesses may benefit. These students are second or third generation business owners from leading business houses and have just finished an intensive Executive Education course at Judge Business School in Cambridge. Among the speakers are CB Patel, publisher
and editor of Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar, and Dr Roger Hayes, FICCI Honorary Advisory in the UK and one of the team to oversee two Vibrant Gujarat Summits from 2009. Business Advisor at the UKIBC, Siddharth
Mukne said, "The UKIBC supports UK businesses with the insights, networks, policy advocacy, services, and facilities needed to succeed in India. However, it's wonderful to be able to help young entrepreneurs from India to understand the UK market and the wider opportunities for partnerships between two countries." The students will be from a range of background including textiles, media, manufacturing and biotech. Their visit to London will also include interactions with other senior business leaders including from the Hinduja Group.
Jain to work as adviser in Deutsche Bank for free
Deutsche Bank co-Chief Executive Anshu Jain, who has resigned as coChief Executive of Deutsche Bank, will work as an adviser for six months after his departure with out any pay. Jain did not want to financially burden the bank with his own personal decision to quit, which followed a hailstorm of investor criticism, scandals, fines and investigations, reported the Frankfurter A l l g e m e i n e Sonntagszeitung. Jain and his counterpart, coCEO Juergen Fitschen, shocked staff and investors by announcing plans to leave early last week.
REAL ESTATE VOICE
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
When one plus one is equal to three
Sow & Reap A Property Investment Company
A couple of weeks ago we exchanged on a property on Ealing Rd, Alperton, opposite Sainsbury’s. We bought a pub with some land around it, with the aim of looking at this as a site value which we can get planning for residential units. Since the purchase I have come across 3 people who were bidding on the site, I was told there were no less than 30 bidders for this site. One of the failed bidders wanted to speak to us and managed to get connected. He apparently owned the site next door, that’s what he claimed anyhow. And he was either looking to do a joint venture or purchase the site from us outright. On the phone he suggested we paid too much, he said we would not get planning for anywhere near the number of units we were hoping for. This means both our architect and planning consultant were wrong. Its human nature to down play what you missed out on or what you are not part of, people do it for everything.
H o w e v e r, t h e t o n e o f t h e c o n v e r s a t i o n a n n o y e d m e a l i t t l e , a n d s o I d e c i d e d t o d i g a l i t t l e d e e p e r, h e s e e m e d v e r y b l a s é a b o u t t h e w h o l e p ro j e c t . Someone who owned a site with this p otentia l wo uld n ot be so casual, when speaking to someone who owns the site next t o yo u. You can tell a lot from a property address including the purchase price. The land registry reveals the ownership details, how long they have owned the property, who’s got a mortgage on it and so forth. Perhaps a little too much information than should be allowed to the casual snooper. Many people are cagey about what they paid for a property, but the information will be made publicly available within a few months of purchase. When we investigated the land registry documents it transpired he didn’t quite own the site, the names did not match. Though his name was not on the land registry, there was a possibility he could have some control on the property. We thought he may have an option agreement, which is an agreement to purchase the site sometime in the future at a predefined price, it’s a binding contract which the seller cannot get out of. Or he may have exchanged on it, this would not show up on the land registry unless it had been specifically noted. So there was a possibility he still may be able to control the deal without actually owning the site. We had to dig down another layer. Property at times requires almost detective work. We tracked down the owner’s location and paid them a visit in person.
There was an offer on the building by the person who claimed to own it. He had simply agreed to purchase it, and note this does not mean he had purchased it. Out bidding a property under offer doesn’t cost anything nor is there any obligation by either party. This means the seller can accept a higher offer and the buyer can choose not to proceed. This is the case up till the point of exchange. When the transaction becomes contractual. He was obviously thinking whilst he was in the process of purchasing this one that he could “grab” the next door as well. Buying them both would mean 1+1 is equal to 3. Shouting too loudly whilst doing a deal could invite trouble. Especially when you are making claims which are not true. The property was under offer to him, but this is very different to saying that they own it already.
T h e y p u r c h a s e d t h e p ro p e r t y a s a c o m m e r c i a l i n v e s t m e n t , w h e n t h e y h a d a t e n a n t i n t h e b u i l d i n g . T h i s p r o p e r t y w a s p u r c h a s e d a s a c o m m e rc i a l investment by them ba ck w hen they ha d a ten ant in the buildin g. The owner who were a couple were oblivious to the p otentia l siz e of the site value, now that the ten ant vacat ed, it was just something to get rid of at the best p ossible pr ice.
When we met the current owners we told them two t h i n g s w e w o u l d i n c r e a s e t h e o f f e r a n d e xe c u t e t h e d e a l v e r y q u i c k l y, b o t h o f w h i c h w e r e m u s i c t o t h e i r e a r s . We m e n t i o n e d w e d i d n o t w a n t t o g e t i n t o a bidding situ ation and if they tr ie d to ra ise the p rice b y g o i n g t o t h e o t h e r p a r t y t h e d e a l w o u l d b e o f f . We can move as fa st as their law yer s could g et the pa pe r work over to ours.
The Real Deal
This is an important piece of the puzzle when it comes to doing the development, we were looking at a JV opportunity at best, never realised we could own the site out right. The former bidder or ‘owner’ as he liked to call himself was understandably disturbed at the new turn of events, not only did he lose in the bidding round, but he also lost a significant part of the puzzle which he was on track to buy, until we pulled the rug from underneath his feet. This is still not the full part of the puzzle as there are other bits of land around this development where we could still do a joint venture with the owners or purchase outright to enhance the ultimate development. We are doing our ground work in this regard, simultaneously we are also exploring our development options on the two sites we own as well. This is what we have for sure and it always pays to negotiate from a position of strength. This is a ‘fresh’ deal and is open for investment, if you like the sound of this you might be able to get a piece of this deal. Call our office to find out more.
Paddington, London, W2 Purchase Price: £750k l A spacious two bedroom flat within a purpose built block l Share of freehold l High ceilings l Low service charges l Properties in this location are being sold for around than £1,400 per sq. ft. while this is coming in at around £1,100 per sq. ft. l Close to the restaurants, shops and bars of Paddington and Lancaster Terrace l Very good buy and hold opportunity Call us now to reserve!
0207 993 0103
We provide a turnkey solution. Contact us now:
Central London Property Sourcing
55 Bryanston Street, Marble Arch Tower, London, W1H 7AA
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Tips of the Week l Central London property prices are higher than the rest of the country with good reason; demand outstrips supply. Don’t look for rental yield in this location, it’s sheer capital growth which drives this market.
l Property is a very forgiving asset class, even if you purchase a dud property given time it will rise; the stronger the location the quicker it will rise.
Modi set to launch India's biggest labour overhaul
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is preparing to launch the country's biggest overhaul of labour laws since Independence, in order to create millions of manufacturing jobs, all at the risk of stirring up a political backlash. Officials at the central labour ministry have said the ministry was drafting a bill for the upcoming parliamentary session that proposes to loosen strict hire-and-fire rules and make it tougher for workers to form unions. If approved by the Parliament, this would be the biggest economic reform since India opened
Maggi sales plummet in India
The recent lead and MSG controversy may just have cost Magi its glory of being a Rs 20 billion brand in India this year. The FMCG industry has very few brands in the Rs 50 billion sales bracket, but quite a handful of them are reaching the Rs 20 billion mark. Maggi, given its vast consumption and strong brand equity amongst its consumers, crossed the benchmark years back. But considering the latest negative publicity the brand has been receiving and the fact that the product is off shelves, even if temporarily; it seems to have a rub-off effect on other Maggi products as well. A senior analyst explains that high-consumption categories, the percentage spend of the consumer's wallet and competitiveness, determine the size of the brand. Maggi, which created the noodles market of India, was for a long period of time, the only player in the category. “For some brands it is very easy to touch Rs 20 or 50 billion sales because of the category they are present in,” the analyst said. The growing consumption has seen action in the Rs 10 billion bracket. Godrej No. 1 and the said group's other product, Good Knight has crossed Rs 15 billion in sales. From HUL, Dove has entered the club, while Dabur's Real, Amla and Vatika has crossed the mark too.
its economy in 1991. The Opposition and the labour activists will pose challenges though. Asia-Pacific chief economist, Rajiv Biswas said Modi had very little option but to push ahead with the measures. “Without these reforms,
the economy would stagnate and frustrated investors would look elsewhere,” he said. “You cannot make political opposition an excuse for not taking tough decisions.” After successful and peaceful implementation of labour market in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, the federal labour ministry now intends to do the same at a national level. According to the pro-
posed makeover, a factory employing fewer than 300 workers would be allowed to lay off workers without government permissions, but they will have to pay three times the current severance package. The planned changes would also make it tougher for employees to form unions or go on strike, but make them eligible for minimum wage. The current labour rules was the biggest constraint on Modi's 'Make in India' aim to induce a manufacturing boom by creating jobs for 200 million Indians in the next two decades.
Indian banks get new teeth to fight against defaulting companies
The Reserve Bank of India's newest measure to compete with the country's limp bankruptcy laws and overburdened legal system has given Indian banks an important strategic advantage in their long battle against the promoters of defaulting companies. The new rules issued, allow lenders to take a majority stake in defaulting companies. In the RBI's new debt restructuring scheme, banks will be allowed to convert all or part of their loan, plus interest, into a majority stake of 51 per cent, if a borrower fails to meet certain milestones, assuming that the debtfor-equity swap has 75 per cent approval. Current laws of loan recasts lean in the favour of the promoters where banks are practically held hostage by those who know that the lenders will have to work with them. These debt recasts
often involve bankers into putting additional money. The new law will give the banks the right to convert their loans into shares in case the promoters do not keep their promises. RBI governor Raghuram Rajan’s plans are timely and could do much to revive the health of India’s banking sector. It is struggling to finance the government’s ambitious plans to boost growth and improve national infrastructure. If
used properly, the new scheme will prevent taxpayer-funded banks from picking up the tab after corporate screw-ups such as Kingfisher Airlines which collapsed in 2012 amid huge losses. “In India, too many large borrowers insist on their divine right to stay in control despite their unwillingness to put in new money,” Rajan had rightly pointed out last year. The new norms will give more power to banks during negotiations about debt recasts, but they cannot be seen as the end game for policy makers. India eventually needs a strong bankruptcy law. Privatisation would help to restore banks to better state, by ensuring stronger management and a firmer grip on lending, although the Indian government does not seem too enthusiastic about it.
India's factory output for April showed a 4.1 per cent growth, against 2.1 per cent for the month before but retail inflation also inched up to 5.01 per cent in May due to higher food prices. The retail, or the consumer price indexed (CPI) inflation, in the corresponding month of 2014 was at 8.33 per cent, the Central Statistics Office (CSO) data showed. The CPI-urban for May stood at 4.41 per cent and rural at 5.52 per cent. May's food inflation stood at 4.8 per cent from the previous month's rate of 5.11 per cent. In this connection, the Reserve Bank of India, last week, reduced its repo rate, that is the rate at which it lends to commercial banks, from 7.5 per cent to 7.25 per cent. Giving reasons for the monetary policy stance, RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan said plans for lower food output needed to be
in place, global financial markets were volatile, factory output was recovering unevenly, services sector was emitting mixed signals, fuel inflation was up, exports were down and liquidity had improved. Even as retail inflation came in line with the equities markets and the industry's expectations, it was the factory output that surprised many. An uptick in manufacturing pushed up India's factory output to 4.1 per cent in April, against 2.1 per cent in the month before. Further, among the six sectoral indices, capital goods expanded by 11.1 per cent. The factory output had grown at a slower pace of 2.1 per cent in March from 5 per cent in February. The factory output had stood at 3.7 per cent in April, 2014. According to the CSO data on the Index of Industrial Production (IIP), the healthy growth in the factory output for
April was attributed to an uptick in the manufacturing sector. The manufacturing sector, which has the maximum weightage in the IIP, grew by 5.1 per cent in the month under review from 2.2 per cent in March. For the other two major sub-indices of the IIP, the CSO data showed that the index for the mining sector inched up by 0.6 per cent against 0.9 per cent in March, while that for electricity segment was down 0.5 per cent in April, against a growth of 2 per cent in the month before. The three sub-indices of the IIP namely manufacturing, mining and electricity, had registered a growth of 3 per cent, 1.7 per cent and 11.9 per cent in April, 2014 respectively. The present data also showed that among the six use-based classifications of the index, the output of capital goods expanded by 11.1 per cent.
India's factory output jumps, retail inflation also up
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
The current focus on discouraging illegal work is upon employers Employer’s obligations to avoid fines The current focus on discouraging illegal work is upon employers. Many employers are inadvertently caught out failing to follow the letter of the law and with fines at £20000 + it makes no sense not to understand fully what you need to do as a business to ensure that you do not fall foul of the law. There are strict obligations to check documents before a person starts work. To avoid discrimination employers have to check everyone’s documents not just those of the perceived migrant. They should ideally take copies themselves although they can ask for copies to be supplied. The copies should contain a note of the date the document was checked and a signature or initials of the person who carried out the check. Many employers get caught out because of a failure to check from a designated list of documents. Checking National insurance documents is not sufficient. The main problem arises at the extension phase when passports are sent in and therefore not available. In these circum-
stances it is necessary to retain a copy of the application form and the receipt of postage and within 28 days contact the Employer Checking Service to obtain confirmation of the status of a person. This will provide a “statutory excuse” in other words a defence. After employment ends it is necessary to retain documents for 2 years to ensure that the penalty is not applied. A fool proof way to ensure compliance is to take a copy of the Code of Practice on illegal working which is available on the internet and to read and understand the processes and then follow them. There is no substitute for this. In a climate in which the government has a low tolerance for those who engage illegal workers it makes sense, from a business point of view, to put processes in place to avoid the huge fines that are being levied. Shortly there will be more legislation to criminalise certain acts. This is the new reality that employers will have to incorporate among the myriad other areas of legislation elsewhere that shifts the responsibility on the shoulders of employers.
To contact Maria Fernandes, please email at: email@example.com
UK inflation rebounds from 55-year low
As prices rose in May for the first time since October thanks to a rise in transport costs, the UK has rebounded from its dip into inflation last month, official data showed. April saw annual consumer price inflation (CPI) in the UK fall below zero for the first time since the 1960s, according to the Office for National Statistics, which said its consumer price index measure of inflation fell 0.1 per cent in April. But May's figures showed prices clawed back from April's lows, with consumer prices climbing 0.1 per cent in the 12 months to May as airfares rose this year, but fell a year ago. The rise in the cost of air travel between April and May varies significantly year on year, with the timing of Easter seen as a likely factor. Motor fuels were also a major contributor to the rise seen in May this year, with average petrol prices rising by 2.5 pence per litre
between April and May this year compared with a smaller rise of 0.4 pence per litre a year earlier. Food prices, notably vegetables, bread, sugar and confectionery fell slightly between April and May. However, the largest downward contribution came from recreational goods like games, toys and computer games, which fell 0.1 per cent, compared to a 0.4 per cent rise between the same two months last year. With wage growth showing signs of reviving and upward revisions to recent economic growth data, pressure will gain on the Bank of England to consider the timing of an interest rate rise. However, inflation is still way below the central bank's target of 2 per cent. "The outlook for inflation still looks benign, and the bank's 2 per cent target remains a long way off," Markit Chief Economist Chris Williamson said.
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
Paresh Davdra is the Dealing Director of RationalFX,
Spending on the rise Currency Specialists.
British consumers finally look ready to spend like they used to, as lower prices for basics give them more money to eat out and travel, bolstering the economy against weak demand from abroad. Last month the Bank of England forecast that spending would rise by 2.75 percent in real terms this year, the fastest rate in a decade. Consumers account for almost two thirds of British spending, more than in any other big advanced economy apart from the United States. Sterling strengthened on the back of strong industrial output data boosted by a surge in oil and gas production. Industrial output rose by 0.4 on the month, above economists forecast for a 0.1% increase. The increase will raise hopes that Britain's economy picked up speed in the second quarter. Manufacturing output did actually fall, largely due to weak economic growth in the UK’s major export markets and weak investment in the oil and gas industry on the back of lower energy prices. Sterling further strengthened after an estimate from the National Institute for Economic and Social Research said Britain's economic growth picked up pace in the three months to May, recovering from a weak first quarter. They estimate that gross domestic product in the
three months to May was 0.6 percent higher than in the previous three-month period, the fastest growth rate since January and up from a 0.5 percent rate in the three months to April. Talks between Greece and the Eurogroup remain an uncertainty with regards to the final outcome. Greek PM Tsipras said the country will not agree a third bailout program nor accept an agreement without the restructuring of their debt. Tsipras stated there is no deadline in regards to ongoing negotiations and that talks with creditors have entered the final stage. However conflicting comments from the European Commission President Juncker suggested he is losing patience with Greece and is yet to receive a list of reforms from the troubled nation that could resolve the ongoing stalemate. A comment from Greek Finance minister Varoufakis said that discussions with German Finance Minister Schaeuble had been productive. The European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund want further economic reforms before they release the €7.2bn (£5.3bn) of bailout funds. It’s believed Greece is willing to increase VAT, but reduce rates for food and medicine and a further reduced rate for books and hotel accommodation.
There were reports of a German proposal to allow Greece to receive a drip-feed of loans in return for a staggered reform programme. According to the reports, the chancellor Angela Merkel is prepared to accept a muchreduced reform programme, slimmed down to just one or two areas as part of an initial package to salvage a deal with Greece and prevent it exiting the eurozone. The softening of the German stance towards Athens cheered investors keen to see a sustainable rescue of the debt-stricken country after more than four months of negotiating. If Greece do not receive fresh funds to enable it to make a 1.6BEUR payment to the IMF by the end of June, Greece are likely to default. Fed member Dudley openly stated that a rate hike is expected to occur this year and that the difference between market expectations and timing of rate lift-off is extremely close, which was taken as a surprise given Dudley’s usual dovish stance. There were reports that Obama announced that the USD is too strong and could potentially damage exports; however a comment from a US official was also backed up by Obama who stated at the G7 meeting that the USD strength is not a cause for concern. Obama also pointed out at the G7 meeting after speaking
with Angela Merkel, that sanctions on Russia must stay in place until it implements a deal to end fighting in the Ukraine. Consumer confidence rose more than forecast in June as Americans were the most upbeat about their wage prospects in seven years. Preliminary consumer sentiment index increased to 94.6, topping all estimates Consistent labour-market improvement has helped buoy consumers’ attitudes even as costs at the gas pump rise from the cheapest rates since 2009. Further job gains and bigger paychecks should brighten moods and help underpin the household spending that makes up the largest part of the economy. Americans expected an inflation rate of 2.7 percent in the next year, down from 2.8 percent in May. Over the next five to 10 years, they also projected a 2.7 percent rate of inflation, compared with 2.8 percent in the previous month. Measures of sentiment have been uneven as Americans adjust their outlook after the first-quarter growth slump. The Conference Board’s consumer confidence index rose in May to 95.4 from 94.3 the prior month that were the weakest since December. More Americans viewed current economic conditions as favourable, according to the New York-based private research group’s data.
Weekly Currencies As of Tuesday 16th June 2015 @ 6pm
GBP - INR = 100.41 USD - INR = 64.21 EUR - INR = 72.10 GBP - USD = 1.56 GBP - EUR = 1.39
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GBP - AUD = 2.02
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Young Conservative activists visit Israel on fact-finding mission
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
London: A delegation of young Conservative activists visited Israel last week as a part of the fact finding tour of the region. The aim was to give future leaders an opportunity to experience Israel for themselves and make an informed decision about issues in the region. The delegation included tours of the security barrier in Jerusalem, visits to Israel’s many cultural and religious sites, as well as tours of the northern borders with Lebanon and Syria. They also had the opportunity to meet with key Israeli officials, academics and politicians at the Knesset, in addition to meetings in the West Bank with Palestinian representatives. Amongst the delegates tipped to be the leaders of tomorrow were Cllr Ameet Jogia from Harrow and Pranav Bhanot, a community activist and lawyer. After the meet, Cllr
Cllr Ameet Jogia and Pranav Bhanot at the Israeli-Syrian border during their delegation perception portrayed in the Ameet Jogia said, “We hear media. “Israel is a phenomabout the conflict in the enal country with tremenMiddle East on a daily dous complexities, from basis, yet the majority of us the ultra tech city of Tel remain detached from the Aviv, to the historic Holy situation as we feel it doesCity of Jerusalem. Our visit n’t affect us. This delegato the Syrian border was tion was a real eye-opener particularly harrowing as as it helped young politiwe witnessed explosions cians like myself to really and gunshots in villages understand the security taken over by Al Qaeda, a issues faced by Israel and brutal reminder of the its global impact. I have threat we face and how the always wanted to visit conflict in the region is Israel, but like many I was very much real.” often disillusioned by the
Israel, Saudi Arabia want to improve ties
London: US first lady Michelle Obama started her 2 day visit to London, on Monday with both her daughters and mother Marian Robinson. They was hosted by Prince Harry for tea at the Kensington Palace where the Prince and Michelle
Obama discussed support for veterans and their families. She later visited east London to attend an education promotional event at the Mulberry School for Girls, on June 16 where she was greeted with a song, interpretive dance
Pranav Bhanot said, “Meeting activists in Israel and the West Bank put a refreshing perspective on the conflict and emphasised the importance of seeing the facts for ourselves on the ground rather than being influenced by the media. It was particularly interesting to see how enthused Israeli politicians were to strengthen bonds with both the United Kingdom and India.” Conservative Friends of Israel Director Stuart Polak conveyed the importance of the event. “We have a lot of work to do with the government and new MPs, but for the future, doing these trips with Conservative Future is an investment.” Over 450 people had applied to join the delegation but there was only 15 places and was co-ordinated by Israel’s Foreign Ministry and its London Embassy.
Michelle Obama asks girls to study hard and warm glowing smiles. Michelle travelled to the British capital to promote the 'Let Girls Learn' initiative, launched in March. True to her nature, the Harvard and Princeton-educated lawyer spoke on an emotional and personal tern as she
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addressed an audience of girls. She told them the world needed, “more girls like you to lead our parliaments, our courtrooms and universities.” “With an education from this amazing school you all have everything, everything you need to rise above all of the noise and fulfil every last one of your dreams. And it is so important that you do that, not just for yourselves but for all of us. Because you all have a unique perspective, you have a unique voice to add to the conversation.” Comparing her upbringing with theirs, she reminisced her teenage days when people told her not to set her sights too high as she was black. Her parents realised education was the ultimate key to success and she could be successful if she worked hard at school. “They also knew that a good education was the ultimate key to our success. My parents told me everyday I could be anything. I could grow up to be a doctor, a lawyer, a scientist, whatever, but only if I worked as hard as I could to succeed in school.” She said she never could have dreamed of running a non governmental organization, becoming a hospital executive or living in the White House as first lady. “Those kinds of achievements seemed totally out of reach when I was growing up. I was just a working class kid,” she said. “The fact that I was a girl and I was black - that certainly didn’t help things, either.” “With an education from this amazing school, you have everything you need to rise above all the noise and fulfil every last one of your dreams,” she told the students of the school.
Zimbabwe bows out at 35 quadrillion a dollar
Harare: Zimbabwe's currency has been set to retire after reaching 35 quadrillion dollars to $ 1 USD. The demonetization started on Monday, 15 June, and will run till September 30. The country had been using the US dollar since 2009, where a multi-currency system has been in operation for the last 6 years. South African rand and the US dollar were accepted currencies in 2009, while the Chinese yuan, Australian dollar, Japanese yen and the Indian rupee joined the list in 2014. People with accounts of up to 175 quadrillion Zimbabwean dollars will be paid $5 and those who preserved bills at home will receive a rate of 250 trillion to $1 for their 2008-issued notes and 250 to $1 for their 2009-issued notes.
Cairo: On June 4th, Saudi Arabia and Israel admitted at a conference in the US that they have held a series of meetings to improve ties, a step the countries have decided to take after deliberation over the shared strategic interests. Former head of Israel's National Security Council, Ilan Mizrahi said, “ Like us, the Saudis are worried about Iran, IS and the fear that America is no longer committed.” Both the countries have taken steps to mend their fences with each other earlier too. In the 1960s, Saudi Arabia and Israel armed Yemen's royalists to defeat Egypt's then President Gamal Abdel Nasser's military.
Rosetta to land next to Phillae
London: The team behind the Rosetta comet landing will attempt to set down the orbiter next to lander Philae in a final mission next year. The European Space Agency’s spacecraft has been orbiting comet 67p/Churyumove-Gerasimenko since releasing the space probe last November. The mission which was due to end in September will now likely run to 2016. Project scientist Matt Taylor said the team would try to place the orbiter next to lander Philae 'for emotional reasons,' so that 'mother and child' could be reunited. They are hoping to use the remaining dregs of fuel to move Rosetta to within 5 km of the comet before trying to land.
More than 80,000 shops could close by 2017
London: The retail industry in Britain has warned in a study of the controversial business rates tax system that if the government does not examine the tax, more than 80,000 shops face the risk of shutting down by 2017. Even the best case scenario would be 9,073 fewer shops in the next two years and given one business will put 10 people out of work, it is still putting 80,000 jobs at risk, as per the British Retail Consortium. The results are based on retailers not renewing their leases on the 60 pc of high street stores that will see their rental agreement expire by 2017.
Rachel Dolezal falsely portrayed herself as black
Washington: Following the filing of complaints by NAACP leader Rachel Dolezal who believed she was being targeted for her race, her parents have revealed her to be Caucasian, part German and part Czech to be precise, as opposed to her claims of being African-American. They claimed she spent years deliberately misleading the public and her colleagues about her race. Dolezal later confirmed the allegation and said she understood why people may feel misrepresented, she said, “I can understand that. And like I said, it's more important to me to clarify that to the black community, and with my executive board, than it really is for me to explain it to a community that I quite frankly don't think understands the definitions of race and ethnicity.”
How Tony Blair built a business empire in China
Abu Dhabi: Former Prime Minister Tony Blair has privately begun to act as broker between Abu Dhabi and China. He has been courting some of the most influential Chinese political and business leaders, and introducing them to the Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund he works for. He has also facilitated talks between the chief executive of Dow Chemical and a series of Chinese government and business figures. The role Blair is currently playing shows his prominence in one of the most important areas of global economic cooperation this century; between the extremely wealthy and strategically important Middle Eastern emirate and the emerging superpower of China.
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
British minister slams reality TV wannabes
London: Priti Patel, British employment minister, said that there would be 14million job openings in the next decade and youngsters should be ready to take them not dreaming of a get-rich-quick life as a minor celebrity. The Essex MP warned the jobless will be expected to seek work experience or training to fill vacancies and not start a life on benefits. She slammed reality TV shows for the portrayal of an easy life of partying, fashion and holidays by sending the wrong message to the show's millions of fans.
University of Cambridge to hire ‘professor of Lego’
London: The University of Cambridge has announced its intentions to hire a Lego professor to run its new research centre that focuses on “play in education, development and learning” that was helped launch by a $2.3 million donation from the Lego Foundation. The job isn’t exactly playing with Legos, but is focused on how children learn and develop through play and interacting with others. And it’s safe to assume Lego blocks will play a role. Cambridge isn’t the only institution with ties to the Lego Foundation. Lego has gotten together in similar research with MIT in the United States and Tsinghua University in China.
Magna Carta: ‘Turgid’ document was eclipsed by the French, says top judge
London: One of Britain's most senior judges has dismissed the Magna Carta as a “turgid” document which is far less significant in the development of modern rights than the French Revolution. Lord Sumption, Justice of the Supreme Court said the British document was only relevant to a “small minority of rich Englishmen” and pales into insignificance as compared with the French declaration of the Rights of Man. “I am a Magna Carta sceptic,” Lord Sumption, who is also a distinguished medieval historian, said in a speech at a conference of the Franco-British Council in London.
World’s first penis transplant recipient to become a father
Johannesburg: A South African man who made headlines in March for having the world's first successful penis transplant is to become a father, his surgeon reported. The man’s girlfriend is four months pregnant, Professor Andre van der Merwe said, proving “the transplant worked”. "This is what we intended, that he should be able to stand up and be able to urinate and have intercourse, so it is a milestone for him," the Doctor said. The 21-year-old recipient, who has not been identified, lost his penis in a botched traditional circumcision three years ago and had the ground-breaking, nine-hour surgery in December
Woman dies after being struck by a train at Kingsbury
London: An unidentified woman died after being struck by a train at Kinsgbury Tube Station. A spokesman for British Transport Police said: “We were called to Kingsbury Underground station just after 3 pm on Monday, 15 June, after a report that a person had been struck by a train. “BTP officers attended the southbound Jubilee line platform, alongside colleagues from London Ambulance Service and London Fire Brigade. “A woman was pronounced dead at the scene. Officers are currently working to identify the woman and inform her family.
Now, men taking their wife's name
London: In a new trend, men are taking their wives’ names now. Under ancient English law, a woman can take her husband’s name automatically and simply present the marriage certificate as proof of her identity. Men, however, may have to pay £17 if they use an agency to register their new name. Louise Bowers, of the UK Deed Poll Service, said that men taking their wives’ names, couples going double-barrelled and the meshing of names to create a new one now form a significant proportion of the 60,000 deed polls the company issues each year, up from a fraction of that a few years ago. Guardians of the Galaxy actress Zoe Saldana has revealed that her Italian artist husband Marco Peregi has taken her last name after their marriage two years ago. “I tried to talk him out of it,” Saldana confessed. “I told him, 'If you use my name, you're going to be emasculated by your community of artists, by your Latin community of men, by the world. 'Marco looks up at me and says, 'Ah, Zoe, I don't give a s—t.'”
British charity gets reprieve in Pak
Islamabad: Pakistan has halted and put a temporary suspension on its orders to shut down British charity organisation, 'Save the Children' after what it claims, “international pressure and the UK and US forcing them into one side.” “The organisation can continue its work in Pakistan until further orders,” said a senior official, adding that Pakistan was tightening regulation of all international charities. Saeed Ahmed, a
spokesman for Save the Children in Pakistan, said that they had heard no word from the government. “We would appreciate relevant government authorities to communicate to us officially,” he said. The interior ministry said the earlier decision to ban the 'Save the Children' has been "held in abeyance till further order", which means that the groups can continue its work as it was doing before. Interior Minister
Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said that parliament was "deliberating on exposing" the "many" foreign nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) "working against Pakistan". Islamabad faced a lot of flak and condemnation after it shut down offices of the international aid group on June 12. The organisation was ordered to shut down and given 15 days to leave by the government on allegations of the staff members working 'against Pakistan’s
interest'. 'Save the Children' has been under the spotlight since 2012, when a Pakistani doctor running the campaign was arrested by the country's intelligence services and accused of working undercover for the CIA, using cheek swabs of Bin Laden's children to gather DNA evidence. The organisation of course has always denied any knowledge of the doctor's work outside the charity's behalf.
George Kirby and Doreen Luckie after giving into the pressures of their elderly children. They have 7 children, 15 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren. The pair live together at the Langham Hotel in Eastbourne, East Sussex, which is run by George's son Neil Kirby, 63, where the ceremony took place. “It's about time, really. Doreen keeps me young
and I can definitely say we're going to spend the rest of our lives together,” said George. “I wasn't a blushing bride, but I was a bit giddy. It was such a lovely day- and great to see everybody,” Doreen said. George met Doreen when he was 76, and had just got divorced, while Doreen, had become a widow three years earlier following 36 years of marriage. She said: "He used to come to my house. We got on straight away. He liked the roses in my front garden - he was a real smooth talker." Neil added: "Long ago we adopted Doreen as our mum, and we're all delighted that she's now a Kirby. I'm not sure if she's
going to change her name though. I wouldn't blame her for not, it is about time my dad finally made an honest woman out of her." George was born in London in June 1912 and joined the RAF as a physical education instructor in 1933, where he stayed for 25 years. He was a passionate and talented boxer, winning every single one of the 60 fights he entered during his life. Doreen keeps herself in shape by doing yoga classes on the seafront every week. Neil added: "At their age, there's nothing that they want materially and so they asked for donations to be made for charity rather than gifts."
Man and woman get married at the combined age of 194
London: A British couple has entered the Guinness Book of World Records for becoming the oldest couple to get married. George Kirby and Doreen Luckie who have been together for 27 years, tied the knot in Eastbourne, Southern England, in front of close friends and family and a representative of the international franchise. With a combined age of 194 years, the pair beat the previous record held by a French couple, Francois Fernansez and Madeleine Francineau, who had a combined age of 191 years. George and Doreen who have been together since 1988, finally decided to make their union official
Landslides bury 6 villages in Nepal, 41 killed
Kathmandu: At least 41 people were killed last week in a landslide triggered by heavy rainfall that buried six villages in Nepal's mountainous northeast, the second major disaster to hit the country after the April 25 quake. The landslide hit the villages in Taplejung district killing 41 people and injuring eight others, police said. So far 12 bodies have been recovered from the site. The number of casualties may rise as many residents have gone missing. Six villages were swept away in the mudslide. Nepal army and Nepal police personnel have been mobilized for carrying rescue operation. Continuous rain and flash floods in the streams have hampered rescue efforts, police said. The landslide has also obstructed transport services at the Mechi highway. Landslides are common in mountainous Nepal during the rainy monsoon season. The Himalayan nation is still recovering from two major quakes and several aftershocks that killed nearly 9,000 people and left a trail of destruction. Two mild aftershocks were recorded last week.
Naidu may quit if Telangana ACB files FIR against him
Hyderabad: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu may quit his post if the Telangana Anti-Corruption Bureau files a supplementary FIR naming him as one of the accused in the shocking cash-for-vote scam. Officials from the bureau said they were seeking permission from the court to file the FIR. It has also been revealed by sources that Naidu held lengthy meetings with DGP J V Ramudu, the
Chandrababu Naidu and Ashok Gajapathi Raju state intelligence chief and other senior officials. He has also informed PM Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah that union civil aviation minis-
22 killed as van falls into Godavari river
Rajamundry (Andhra Pradesh): Twenty two people, including 9 women and 7 children, were killed when a cruiser van fell into the river Godavari near Rajahmundry, East Godavari district in Andhra Pradesh. The victims, all relatives, were returning to their native village in Visakhapatnam district after offering prayers at Lord Sri Venkateswara temple in Tirumala and Goddess Sri Kanakadurga in Vijayawada when the mishap occurred. According to police, the driver lost control over the wheel due to over speeding. The vehicle hit the road divider and fell into the river from the bridge. Twenty one people died on the spot while a girl, who was rescued and shifted to Rajahmundry hospital, died a few hours later. Lone survivor, Kiran, 13, is undergoing
as accused in the supplementary FIR. The Telangana ACB had already made TDP Telangana MLA A Revanth Reddy as the prime accused and arrested him along with two others on May 31. Reddy was caught by the ACB offering Rs 5000,000 as advance for a total Rs 50 million to Telangana's nominated MLA Elvis Stephenson to vote for the TDP candidate in the MLC election on June 1.
Andhra Pradesh imposes tax on street-lighting
treatment in hospital. His condition is said to be critical. There were 23 people in the vehicle when it met with the accident. Scores of villagers rushed to the spot to take up rescue operation, but the occupants had died by then. The heavy impact of the fall left the vehicle mangled into a single piece of metal. The police and rescue teams had to use a crane to lift the vehicle and cut open the doors to retrieve the bodies. Chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu and leader of opposition YS Jaganmohan Reddy expressed shock over the mishap and conveyed condolences to the members of the grief-stricken families.
Hyderabad: Andhra Pradesh government has decided to impose tax on street-lighting. It will soon become a part of the property tax notice. The proposal has been cleared by chief minister Chandrababu Naidu and the residents of 13 districts of the state will be paying Rs 50 to 100 per year based on the total amount of the owner's property tax. The decision follows the massive losses power utilities have been incurring. In the 2014-15 fiscal, the power utilities supplied 313.12 million units for lighting up the streets of Andhra which drew a bill of Rs 1.71 billion, an amount against which they got a mere Rs 54.6 million as payment from the users. In municipalities and corporations, the money spent by the state in providing street-lighting is already being extracted from the consumers. "There are various taxes in
municipal corporation (MC) elected representatives were present in the awareness campaign. The jathedar expressed solidarity with the cause of a ‘Clean and Green Amritsar’, as envisaged by EcoSikh, the parent organisation to which EcoAmritsar is affiliated to. EcoSikh, which is headquartered in New York, has set 2017 as its target for making Amritsar a clean city. The jathedar extolled citizens of all faiths to come together to make this dream a reality. The procession culminated at Ram Bagh Gardens where a meeting was held under the chairmanship of deputy commissioner Pradeep Sabharwal.
Chandigarh: Nek Chand Saini, the creator of the iconic Rock Garden, died at a hospital following a cardiac arrest. The 90 year old architectural autodidact was admitted to the hospital for the past few days after which he was shifted to PGIMER where he breathed his last. The Chandigarh administration remained closed for a day as a mark of respect for the departed soul. His death came days before his 40 figurative mosaic sculptures were to be put on display for the first time in the UK Pallant House Gallery in the charming setting of historic Chichester (West Sussex) from June 13 to October 25. The works were on loan from the Nek Chand Foundation in London. The Padma Shri awardee, whose 90th birthday was celebrated by the Chandigarh administration and the residents, had millions of fans across the
Amritsar celebrates 438th foundation day
Amritsar: Amritsar celebrated its 438th foundation day on Sunday last with various programmes. Prayers were offered, vows were taken and marches were taken out to create awareness for a ‘Clean Amritsar.’ The city was founded by Guru Ram Dass, the fourth guru of the Sikhs. A rally was taken out by volunteers of EcoAmritsar, an NGO, which led an awareness march through different parts of the city. The procession was flagged off at the Golden Temple by Akal Takht jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh, who appreciated EcoAmritsar for creating awareness about cleanliness among the residents. People from different walks of life such as representatives of NGOs, NCC cadets, school students and many others participated in the march. However, neither the mayor nor any of the
ter Ashok Gajpathi Raju may be appointed as a replacement in the event of his resignation. Naidu's brother-in-law Nandamuri Balakrishna, senior ministers K Narayana and Y Ramakrishnudu were among other aspirants for the top post, but sources said Naidu preferred Raju, a loyalist and a capable administrator. It is said that along with Naidu, a central minister and two TDP MPs would be named
urban areas like advertisement tax, entertainment tax, shop licence fee, etc. From the money collected under these heads, we pay the power utilities for the bill raised by them for providing street-lighting," said an official in the municipal administration department. Gram panchayats were paying the power utilities for street-lighting since long, but in 1987 the then chief minister NT Rama Rao issued an order exempting local bodies from paying for streetlighting. To make up for this, successive state governments started deducting the amount given by the Centre under devolution of funds meant for local bodies and diverting the same to the power utilities. But a problem arose when the Centre stopped releasing funds for local bodies on the grounds that elections were not being held.
Rock Garden creator Nek Chand passes away
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
Hyderabad student shot dead in Florida
Hyderabad: A 23- year- old Hyderabadi student was shot dead in Florida in an apparent mugging bid gone wrong. Sai Kiran who had recently begun an MS programme was shot four times after he refused to hand over his mobile phone to unidentified men. "We received information from his friends that some people demanded his phone on which he was already talking. His friend on the other end of the call heard four rounds of gun shots being fired. We are awaiting more details," his uncle Shravan Kumar said. Sai Kiran had completed his bachelors in engineering from Geetanjali College in Keesara, near Hyderabad and had left for the US on May 2, to join his MS course.
Bengaluru school asks Muslim teacher not to wear headscarf
Bengaluru: A newly appointed teacher in a Bengaluru school has been asked to resign for refusing to stop wearing a headscarf while on duty. Shahina, who hails from Malappuram in Kerala was recruited as the Assistant Mistress of Jubilee School in Vijinapura, Bengaluru, says she is in a state of shock after she got a call from the principal's office on her first day at work. She was allegedly told she had been replaced by someone else and asked to submit her resignation letter when she did not listen to the authority.
Woman kills husband for extramarital affairs
Madurai: Hell hath no wrath like a woman scorned. The 35- year- old Selvi killed her husband in his sleep by crushing his head with a grinding stone at their house in Madurai, Tamil Nadu. Identified as Chellapandi, the victim was into black magic and a few extramarital affairs which caused frequent fights between the couple which subsequently, resulted in his death. He had reached home the night of the incident in an inebriated condition when a fight ensued between him and his wife. Selvi later on, surrendered to the police with her children, a 15 -year -old son and a 14- year- old daughter.
Ambedkar statue vandalised in Punjab Phagwara (Punjab): A statue of B R Ambedkar was allegedly vandalised at Palahi village which sparked protests by dalits who blocked roads across the district. The statue's raised arm was found twisted and damaged. Led by BSP leader Jarnail Nangal and Ambedkar Sena Moolnivasi Punjab President Harbhajan Suman, the protesters raised anti-government slogans and also threatened to call for a bandh if the culprits were not arrested soon.
Khalistani terrorist Bhullar shifted to Amritsar jail
Chandigarh: Devindar Pal Singh Bhullar, Khalistan terrorist who was sentenced to death in 1993, for masterminding a car bomb attack that killed 12 people, has been shifted to the Amritsar Central Jail from Delhi's Tihar Jail citing poor health. He underwent medical examination at the government Guru Nanak Dev hospital and is now undergoing a psychiatric treatment. Punjab police has deployed a force of 100 police personnel besides a dog squad to ensure Bhullar's security.
BJP leader booked for hurting religious sentiments Nek Chand Saini globe. As the roads inspector of the public works department in Punjab, he had quietly built the garden after clearing a little patch of forest near the Sukhna lake. Waste like broken crockery, electrical fittings, glass bangles, bathroom tiles, wash basins and bicycle frames were used to make mosaic sculptures of men, women and gods. The Rock Garden, inaugurated in 1976, is now spread over an area of 40 acres and more than 250,000 people from India and abroad visit it every year with the annual revenue generated from ticket sales around Rs 18 million.
Pathankot: BJP leader Parveen Manhas has been booked for damaging a religious hoarding on the eve of the 31st anniversary of Operation Bluestar and posting objectionable content against a community on social media. The former BJP Kisan Morcha Secretary was booked on the basis of complaint filed by various Sikh organisations. Upon an inquiry, a prima facie case was established against the leader," the SSP Pathankot, Rakesh Kaushal said, adding that the accused has been absconding and a team has been formed to arrest him.
Gas leak kills 5, affects over 100
Ludhiana: An ammonia gas tanker leak along a canal on the Doraha Bypass road killed 5 people and put 100 others in the hospital as they complained of breathing problems. “Those affected after inhaling the gas have been admitted to various hospitals in Ludhiana. Barring 2-3 persons, all were stated to be out of danger by the doctors,” Ludhiana Police commissioner Pramod Ban said. Locals came out of their houses even as the gas from the leaking tanker spread in and around Doraha, police said, adding that residents of the surrounding areas had to be evacuated after the incident.
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Muslims to observe Ramadan in the UK
Should We Speak Out Against ISIS – The Limits of Free Speech? As the alarm rang last Friday at 0355 I knew I could not hit snooze. I knew I would have to shower and dress and read the global papers from the Washington Post to the Sydney Morning Herald, via China Business Daily, Moscow Times too. At precisely 0445 I stepped into the black Mercedes waiting for me outside my home. The driver is a familiar face, but I’m too immersed in checking the latest overnight news on my phone, from the US and the afternoon happenings in Japan. The producer at the BBC at 0500 welcomes me with a smile, and we discuss the stories that I shall comment on. Then swiftly down to make up at 0515, with a hot coffee in hand. Back to the ‘green room’ to sit in front of the PC and read the stories and do some background research. A quick chat at 0530
Fourth consecutive teenage stabbing in London
There has been yet another knife crime amongst teenagers, making it the fourth consecutive attack in London. Year 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 Total
Number Stabbed of Teenage Murders 14 9 18 11 28 18 29 23 14 10 19 10 15 11 8 6 12 7 11 8 7 7 175 116
A 16-year-old boy was stabbed twice in the span of four days, in Chingford. Another 14-year-old was stabbed in Burnt Oak, Edgware; a 16-year-old was stabbed repeatedly in Hounslow, west London, and 18-year-old Stefan Appleton was stabbed in Islington. These attacks have shockingly been taking place one after the other, although the perpetrators are not the same. The thought of the safety of the youth, if not of our own has become highly questionable. Disturbing is also the fact that many people have become desensitised to the idea of teenage stabbings taking place, reacting as though it is a common crime. This table shows that so far in the first six month of 2015, there has been seven teenage murders due to stabbing.
with one of the presenters, and then into the studio. And then it happens. All hell breaks loose. Or rather, I break lose like hell on the first story. The US are thinking of new bases in Iraq. I can’t be polite. I cannot control my anger. ‘We’re being sucked in. And I’m angry. The Middle East has always had its fair share of psychopaths and it’s got to stop being our problem in the West. We don’t have the money. They have to sort it out. Let the Saudis do it, the Emiratis. They’re all rich and armed to the teeth by us. The ISIS psychopaths and those like them have been around long before America was even a country – it’s not us they hate, it’s just death they love, and if not us, then some other excuse they will find.’ Well I’ve been told by quite a few people I shouldn’t have said that. Oh not for factual inaccuracy, but
in case the ISIS psychopaths (and there are a few of them in Britain as we know – like in Dewsbury) come and find me. You know why nonpoliticians like me and you need to speak out? Because these psychopaths, and their virgin brides, need to know ordinary common people know they are psychos, know they are not glamourous. Keeping quiet is Islamophobia, speaking out isn’t. Speaking out in private is not good enough. We have to speak out in public and call them what they are – psychopaths. Make a martyr of me ISIS. You sick death-loving psychopaths. We too know where you live, and the armies of the world are congregating on your borders to send you to your sick psychopathic heaven. And if you want to see the clip: http://bit.ly/alpeshshowreel
Rule change to affect spouses of Indian immigrants In another whimsical effort to 'control' immigration, the Tory government has now decided to bar spouses of Indians coming into the UK on dependent visa from working in Britain. The rule change that will come into effect from next year, was apparently determined after immigration data showed that net annual migration to Britain had leapt to 318,000, just 2,000 below the highest figure on record. Britain's new immigration blue print was announced on last Wednesday by the Prime Minister himself. The responsibility to make these changes will depend on the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) that is being set up to consider a host of new measures to reduce demand for migrant labour from outside EU. The measures expected to be introduced by next year will include: • restricting work visas to genuine skills shortages and highly specialist experts,
• putting a time limit on how long a sector can claim to have a skills shortage, • a new skills levy on Tier 2 visas to boost funding to UK apprenticeships and • raising salary thresholds to stop businesses using foreign workers to undercut wages. The Committee has also been told to see: • how to put up restrictions on the automatic right of Tier 2 dependents to work, • tightening up on the intra company transferee (ICT) route, including applying the immigration health surcharge to ICTs and • raising the minimum salary levels that economic migrants have to be paid. While Britain is trying to rebuild a stronger foundation with India, there are possibilities that such drastic measures towards legitimate immigrants will only make relationships between the two countries sour. We already have international student figure falling by 50%, hopefully this step will not hit the UK economy further.
A British cleric has reportedly issued a fatwa to reduce prolonged fasting period for British Muslims during the holy month of Ramadan. The start and end dates of the holy month vary depending upon the sighting of the moon. It is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and is observed by Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting to commemorate the first revelation of the Quran to Muhammad according to Islamic belief. British Muslims are preparing for it, which is often considered the hardest due to the 16-19 hours of daylight in summer in the UK. Sheikh Dr Usama Hasan of the Quillian Foundation has advocated that devotees in the UK should follow the timings
observed in Mecca, where fasting hours last around 12 to 13 hours a day. Muslims in the Arctic Circle were already planning to frame a new set of rules for their Ramadan fasting as the region have sunshine for 24 hours a day. Last year, Sheikh Hassan Halawa, of the European Council for Fatwa, however, opposed cutting short of the fasting period by saying that it is improper for British Muslims to not fast for the long summer times as there are countries where people fast in spite of the intolerable heat. PM David Cameron praising the Muslim values said, “As friends and families come together, in contemplation and in fasting, we are reminded of those Muslim values – those
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British values – of community, family and charity... “British Muslims are at the top of every field from our biggest businesses to our precious health service to our Houses of Parliament - and yes – to the Cabinet I lead. “I’ve talked a lot about One Nation – about Britain being a country where everyone can get on, whatever their background and wherever they’re from. British Muslims embody that spirit.... Britain will reflect on the universal values that Ramadan represents, and the contribution that British Muslims make to our country. Ramadan Mubarak to you all.” To find more information on Ramadan timings see in your city: http://www.ramadan.co.u k
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Pujya Swami Paramatmanandaji Saraswati visiting London
Pujya Swami Paramatmanandaji Saraswati, founder acharya of Arsha Vidya Mandir, holds a certain fervour and commitment towards Indian traditional values and a deep sense of concern towards the society. The senior disciple of Param Pujya Swami Dayananda Saraswati, Pujya Swamiji has attended a rigorous three and half year residential courses in Vedanta at Rishikesh and other places, after the completion of which, he started spreading his knowledge and has persevered it for the last 30 years. Swamiji's ability to teach across all the sections of the society has helped him reach out from school and college stu-
dents to corporate executives. His talks reveal clarity, the deep understanding of the human life and are enriched with systematic and rational but lucid presentation with relevant examples. He has conducted several 'reach-out' programmes to keep our heritage alive and bring a change of basic human values. He was awarded with a special 5 day residential training programme to train teachers by the HRD Ministry of India, where more than 3,500 teachers were trained so far. He is also a visiting faculty to the Saurashtra University's Academic Staff College and other institutions. His Rajkot Ashram conducts regular residential and
Continued from page 1 provoked by the killing of Indian soldiers. Pak parliamentarians criticise Indian leaders statement Pakistani parliamentarians have cut across party lines to criticise what they said were “hostile” statements made by Indian leaders, including Prime Minister Modi, in the wake of a cross-border raid by Indian troops. The resolution adopted by the Senate or upper house of parliament asked the world community to “take note of the situation, cautioning against any fallout on regional peace prospects, sovereignty and stability”. The Senate resolution stated: “This house condemns the recent disturb-
ing pattern of provocative and hostile statements from Indian leaders, including threatening strikes against Pakistani territory. Such crude attempts by India at trying to browbeat Pakistan are unacceptable and Pakistan rejects this hegemonic mindset.” It added, “The Pakistan Armed Forces are fully capable of giving a befitting response to any incursion, and the Pakistani people stand shoulder-to-shoulder with their armed forces.” The resolution in the National Assembly or lower house of parliament said it “vehemently condemns the irresponsible and hostile statements against Pakistan from the Indian ruling leadership”, adding that such utterances
Swami Paramatmanandaji Saraswati
value education programmes for primary and secondary school children and has addressed about 9,000 children so far. One day programmes for the employees of the Gujarat Electricity Board and the staff members of the Government of Gujarat that was aimed to make government employees more responsible and
citizen friendly, has conducted more than 100 seminars so far. Swamiji additionally conducts classes and series of lectures, called Gyan-Yajnas and residential spiritual retreats to impart Vedantic and and cultural wisdom to seekers. He is an active participant of various institutions in India and abroad. He is the Convener of the Dharma Raksha Manch, Co-Convener of the Ganga Raksha Manch, the ExChairman of the Vishwa Mangal Gan Gram Yatra, Gujarat, Chairing or Board member of different organisations and the Secretary General of the Hindu Dharma Acharya Sabha. He was the first to raise voice against the Setu
Samudram Channel Project and initiated the Ram Setu Raksha Movement, bringing it to a conclusive end. Working with the propaganda to promote and preserve Hinduism internationally, he has partaken in several events. He was present in the historic Hindu-Jewish Declaration in Jerusalem, 2008. Was invited by the President of Israel to participate in the Israeli President's Conference in 2008. Represented the religion in New York, at the invitation of the AmericanJewish Community in 2009, where he held discussions at Capitol Hill with representatives from the US Presidency. Represented Hinduism at the World Religious
Leaders' Summit at Baku, and G8 World Religious Leaders' Summit at Winnipeg in the year of 2010. He also inaugurated the World Hindu Wisdom Meet at Bali with Dy. Education Minister of Indonesia in April 2014. He also visited Japan, Indonesia, Portugal, Spain and Norway this year to attend various religious and Yoga conferences and discourses. Swamiji will be visiting London. Event date: 9th and 10th July from 7pm to 9pm. Contact person: Ajay Rathi, Contact number 07586 624687 Venue : Patidar House 22 London Road Wembley Middlesex HA9 7EX
Indian Army commandos kill N-E ultras in Myanmar
“called into question India’s desire to establish good neighbourly relations with Pakistan”. Congress slams Union ministers' remarks
Congress came down hard on Union ministers for making "boastful and jingoistic" statements on the Army operation and asked Prime Minister
Modi to give them "mentoring and counselling". The defence minister has "foot-in-mouth" disease and is in the "habit" of making "irresponsible"
statements, said party spokesman Anand Sharma who also faulted the "56-inch-chest" remark by another Union minister. "There should be sobriety and maturity. Jingoism and boastful claims are not going to help the operations of India's special forces," he said. “I would request the Prime Minister to give them mentoring and counselling.... PM should restrain his ministers so there is no repeat," he said The Congress spokesman's refrain was that in matters of operations by special forces and those concerning India's neighbours, there should be sobriety and maturity in the statements and actions of Union ministers and others concerned.
7 am and 7:35 am in the entire country simultaneously, is likely to be attended by celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan, Shilpa Shetty and Indian Test skipper Virat Kohli. “Our ministry is also trying to register the mega event in the Guinness Book of World Records,“ Naik said. The United Nations General Assembly adopted June 21 as International Yoga Day after PM Modi urged the world community to observe the ancient practice globally. With over 175 nations supporting Modi's proposal, the move is seen as a diplomatic win.
Continued from page 1 home minister Rajnath Singh said, “whatever she has done is right. We justify it and the government stands by her.” RSS leader Indresh Kumar said Swaraj had been guided by her “humane” nature and “nationalistic” spirit. Swaraj tweeted: “After his wife’s surgery, he came back to London. What is it that I changed?” “What benefit did I pass on to Lalit Modi - that he could sign consent papers for surgery of his wife suffering from cancer?” The Opposition parties alleged a conflict of interest after reports said that Swaraj’s daughter had represented Modi in court. They even asked if Swaraj’s husband provided legal counsel to the exIPL commissioner. The controversy broke out shortly after the British media reported that Labour MP Keith Vaz had recommended to immigration officials in the UK to grant travel doc-
uments to Modi, based on his consultation with the Minister, something that Swaraj has confirmed. While Congress accused the Modi government of protecting Modi and demanded that the Supreme Court should set up a special investigation team to probe the issue, the BJP said the opposition party was "frustrated" and had shown its "complete bankruptcy" by using a "non-issue" to target Swaraj. Addressing a press conference, Congress leader Anand Sharma said that "Modi ministers are hiding facts and they all are protecting a wanted offender." "What Sushma Swaraj did was unwarranted. Moreover, the row is not about Lalit Modi's travel papers but about protection being given to him," Sharma said. "We have to ask PM Narendra Modi directly, why is he quiet? Can there be different set of rules when you talk of probity,"
Sharma asked. "Lalit Modi has declared himself bankrupt but he is holidaying despite bankruptcy," Sharma said. Vasundhara Raje 'secretly' supported Modi In a new twist to the Lalit Modi controversy, “Times Now” revealed that Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje had in August 2011 backed the Modi's UK immigration application on the condition that her support was not made known to Indian authorities. The report said that the letter was part of the documents that were mailed to news channels on Monday night by a PR firm engaged by Modi's lawyer Mehmood Abdi. However, there are no signatures of Vasundhara Raje on the papers showed by the channel. Times Now has said that it does not vouch for the authenticity of the documents as they were provided to the channel by Modi's lawyer.
`Surya Namaskar' dropped from India's Yoga Day programme
The government of India has decided to drop `Surya Namaskar' from the `asanas' that are to be performed by people across the country to commemorate the UN-declared `International Day of Yoga' on June 21. The trimming of the Yoga drill is aimed at catering to the sensibilities of the minorities in the wake of opposition from Muslim groups. Launching a nationwide campaign against making what it called “Hindu religious practices” compulsory in educational institutions, the All India Muslim Personal Board (AIMPLB) had demanded that the order making `Surya Namaskar' compulsory in schools be cancelled. The board had also termed the Modi government's policies as against law and Constitution. Surya Namaskar, regarded as a yogic practice for comprehensive development of the body, is considered a crucial component for improvement of
holistic health. Earlier in April, the government had come under attack on the use of “ Aum” while issuing a common protocol for celebration of the International Yoga Day. Meanwhile, preparations are on in full swing for the mega event on June 21, which is expected to witness almost 40,000 people from across the country at Delhi's Rajpath performing `asanas'. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address the gathering, minister of state for Ayush Shripad Naik said. The programme, which will be conducted between
Sushma in soup over visa for Lalit Modi
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Yorkshire teenager becomes Britain's youngest suicide bomber
Talha Asmal An “ordinary” 17-yearhis family and entirely old boy from Yorkshire against our wishes he has become Britain's ended up travelling it youngest suicide bomber, seems to Iraq.” partaking in a suicide It is said that Asmal attack, killing 11 Iraqis in had boarded a flight to Baiji, northern Iraq. Syria via Turkey in April, Talha Asmal, from Dewsbury is claimed to have been a regular 17year-old lad before he was brainwashed by Islamist terrorists. Talha Asml's family members described him
with his neighbour and best friend, Hassan Munshi, the brother of Britain's youngest convicted terrorist, Hammas Munshi. The terrorist group, Isis, had posted photo-
Isis posted pictures on Twitter of Talha Asmal (extreme right) preparing for the suicide attack on Baiji, northern Iraq
as a loving and amiable teenager. His father, Ebrahim (42) said, “He [Talha Asmal] never harboured any illwill against anybody nor did he ever exhibit any violent, extreme or radical views of any kind. Talha’s tender years and naivety were it seems, however, exploited by persons unknown whohiding behind the anonymity of the world wide web- targeted and befriended Talha and engaged in a process of deliberate and calculated grooming of him. As a result of this and completely unbeknown to us,
graphs of Talha Asmal preparing for the suicide bomb attack on the social networking site, Twitter. Shahid Malik, the former MP for Dewsbury is a friend of the Asmal family. He said, “The local community grieves with them today, Ebrahim and the family’s world has been shattered in the cruellest of ways and one which no family should ever have to experience. Talha was a truly sweetnatured, helpful, respectful and friendly kid, and it is incredibly difficult to reconcile this Talha with the suicide bomber at an Iraqi oil installation.”
East London school bans children from fasting during Ramadan
A primary school trust that has reportedly told its students that it will not allow Muslim children attending school to fast during Ramadan in order to ‘safeguard the health and education of the child’ is facing backlash from the community. Ramadaan, the month long religious tradition due to start Thursday. Barclay Primary School in Leyton, east London, issued a letter to parents informing them that it would not allow children attending school to fast to avoid health risks for young children during the summer term. The ban will also be implemented across three other schools which belong to the Lion Academy Trust. They are Sybourn Primary School and Thomas Gamuel Primary School in Waltham Forest and Brook
House Primary School in Haringey. The letter dated 10 June stated: ‘We are reliably informed that in Islamic Law, children are not required to fast during Ramadan only being required to do so when they become adults.’ And described how children ‘fainted’ and ‘became ill’ during last year’s festival after going without food or water for ’18 hours, a significant amount of time for a child.’
Police searches for man who exposed himself on train
Potential witness: This man may have information about what happened on the train (Picture: British Transport Police) bly distressing incident for Police are on a lookout for the two girls and somea man described as a “perthing that nobody should vert”, who exposed himhave to experience. We self in front of two teenage take all reports of unwantgirls on 31st May 2015. It ed sexual behaviour very is said that he had spent seriously and are working 40 minutes pleasuring hard to catch the person himself on a public train. responsible for this crime. The incident has left the We need to urgently trace girls “incredibly disthe man pictured, as we tressed.” believe he will be able to An image of a potengreatly assist us with our tial witness has been enquiries." released. The police Anyone with informabelieve that the man photion is asked to call transtograph may have inforport police on 0800 40 50 mation regarding the inci40. You can also call dent. Crimestoppers anonySgt Becky Fryer statmously on 0800 555 111. ed, “This was an incredi-
Headteacher banned for racially abusing staff and demeaning pupils
A headteacher who allegedly abused staff racially and demeaned pupils for over seven years, has been banned from the classroom for life. The National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) has announced their decision last week explaining that as the allegations were so serious she would not be able to reapply for her eligibility to teach. The panel heard evidence from 11 witnesses and the report stated many examples. In one
instance Mrs Hanch said a colleague looked like “a polish slapper” and said of another colleague she would like to “chop off”
her head and “see her walking around headless.” Another allegation proven by the tribunal was, when reviewing CVs for newly qualified teachers Mrs Hanch said: “If we have any more Muslims in here it’s going to start looking like Al Jazeera.” She also reportedly told her assistant head "I'm not going to be like those f * g Muslims taking a day off for Eid" as she sought to improve pupil
and staff attendance over religious festivals. However Mrs Hanch denied this, saying she was merely trying to get staff not to take religious holidays off school. And when the finance officer wanted to take time off school to volunteer for the London Olympics she ranted "I'm going to have to break down 5,000 years of Islam to get through to her." Mrs Hanch denied the allegations and has 28 days to appeal the decision.
However it added, “...if you are considering your child fasting during the school week, you will need to meet with your Head of School individually to discuss how we ensure the safety and well being of your child whilst still ensuring that they are part of the Ramadan celebration. No child will be considered to be able to fast in school unless you have met" with the Head of School.” The Muslim Association of Britain has
hit back at the move and claims the decision over whether the children should fast should be made by families not schools. Spokesman said: ‘We believe that there are sufficient and stringent rules within Islam which allow those who are unable to fast, to break fast. ‘These rules include those who are medically ill or compromised; or too young or too old to fast. ‘However, we believe that this determination should be decided by parents with their children; who can together reach a collective decision whether or not the child can fast. ‘MAB ascertains that the final choice of whether or not to fast should be the right of the parents, who should in turn encourage their children to fast without forcing them to do so.’
Islamic scholar receives 3 years for sexually abusing girl
Snaresbrook Crown Court
Islamic scholar, Fazul-Ur Rehman (44), has been prosecuted for sexually abusing a girl. Rehman told the child she was “a good girl” as he touched her to prevent her from telling anyone. The child eventually informed her parents of what had happened.Snaresbrook Crown Court heard that the sexual assault left the girl confused and terrified. The victim was forced to give evidence from behind a screen in court. Rehman denied three counts of sexual activity with a child, however, he was convicted to three years imprisonment. While sentencing Rehman, Judge Martyn Zeidman said, “In advance of the trial you heard her pre-recorded interview, you knew what she was saying was the truth. But instead of pleading guilty you decid-
ed to bluff it out – it was your right to do so, but it knocks out what would have been useful mitigation. It would have avoided her having to come to court to be cross-examined. Inevitably the process causes suffering and you had the power to prevent that but chose not to do so.” He was also indefinitely banned by a sexual harm prevention order from having any unsupervised contact with girls under the age of 16. Judge Zeidman stated to the victim and her family, “Before parting from this case I would like to pay tribute to the complainant for her bravery in pursuing the case. She was an impeccable witness of truth and I would like her to know that she commands the respect of all who heard her in court.”
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'Kanchana 2' collects over Rs 1 bn
ctor-filmmaker Ragava Lawrencce's Tamil horror comedy “Kanchana 2” has grossed over Rs 1 billion at the box office worldwide after completing a 50 day run in cinemas. With only a budget of Rs 170 Crore, the movie has turned out to be the most successful venture for its stakeholders, given the return on investment. “It's the first blockbuster of this year in Tamil cinema. It has done phenomenal business by collecting Rs 1.08 billion at the ticket window worldwide. It continues to run to packed house in select theatres across Tamil Nadu,” trade analyst Trinath said. Lawrencce played the lead across actresses Nitya Menon and Taapsee Pannu. The actor has reportedly said 'Kanchana 3' is currently in the scripting stage.
Marathi film ‘Balak Palak’ set for southern remake E ngaging in the trend of remaking films, Srikanth Velagaleti of “Utt Pataang” will now direct the remake of the critically acclaimed and successful Marathi movie, “Balak Palak.” “The tentative title of the film in Telugu is ‘BF’. Director Srikanth is currently busy finalising the lead cast. There are plans to rope in a star couple to play some important roles in the movie,” a source said. The original was directed by Ravi Jadhav and
produced by actor Riteish Deshmukh and Uttung Thakur. The story revolves around the role of sex education in a group of adolescents. The Telugu remake will be coproduced by Uttung and Mohan S Devanga of Kangaroo Motion Pictures.
Keerthi Suresh is Dhanush’s heroine in his next K
eerti Suresh of 'Idhu Enna Maayam' and 'Rajini Murugan' fame has reportedly bagged a role opposite Dhanush in Prabhu Solomon's untitled travel drama. “Keerthi was recently signed on for the project. Director Prabhu felt she
ny Body Can Dance 2” is an upcoming Indian dance movie that trails along the journey of a dance group from the backstreets of Mumbai to the vibrant city of Las Vegas. The film explores their sudden fame, downfall and their struggle to achieve success on an international platform. It is a sequel to the 2013 “Any Body Can Dance,” directed by Remo D'Souza and jointly produced by Siddharth Roy Kapur and Walt Disney. The movie features Shraddha Kapoor, Varun Dhawan and Prabhu Deva in the lead with Lauren Gottlieb, Raghav Juyal and Dharmesh Yelande in supporting roles.
ctor Sharwanand, who was last seen in the Telugu drama “Malli Malli Idi Rani Roju” will now simultaneously shoot for two new untitled Telugu movies. After starting to shoot for UV Creations' film with director M Gandhi, he signed up for another project with débutante director Bhaskar. He plans to start working on the project soon. A source said he would juggle with both the projects simultaneously. In the UV Creations' film, he is paired with actress Surabhi who will also be seen in Ram Gopal Varma's Telugu action-thriller, “Attack.” Malayali actress Niveda Thomas has been roped in as the heroine of the film by ad filmmaker-turneddirector Bhaskar.
would be perfect for the role. Initially, he had plans of casting a newcomer, but after seeing Keerthi’s work in Malayalam, he decided to go with her,” a source said. The story is based on a man who travels from Delhi to Chennai via the Duronto Express and Dhanush will play a pantry worker. The film is expected to go on floors once Dhanush completes shooting for his Tamil movie 'VIP 2.'
My life is between action and cuts: Rajkumar Rao
Sharwanand to simultaneously shoot for two Telugu films A
ational Award winning actor Rajkumar Rao who has consistently performed in Bollywood films is serious about the art as none other. The actor, currently awaiting feedback on “Hamari Adhuri Kahani” said, “My life is between action and cuts. As an actor, the most important thing for me is the process of film making.” When asked if he was nervous about his movie, he said, “I am very neutral. When the film is releasing, you really look forward to it. The same way, I am looking forward to it, but I am looking forward to the feedback, which I am going to get after the movie is released.” The movie also stars Emraan Hashmi and Vidya Balan and was released on June 12th.
Shabana to play Neerja Bhanot’s mother
eteran actress Shabana Azmi will play the role of Neerja's mother Rama in the biopic “Neerja.” Shababa says she gets along “really well” with the real life mom of the late daredevil flight attendant Neerja. “I had the good fortune of meeting Ramaji in person last year when I was invited to Chandigarh to present the Neerja Bhanot Award. She is lovely and we got along really well. When I was offered the role, I felt it was because of a special connection we made.” “Neerja” will be directed by debutant Ram Madhvani.
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Ranbir serious about marrying Katrina
fter years of dodging and evading media speculations, Ranbir Kapoor has finally confirmed his relationship with actress Katrina Kaif and has revealed that he would marry her by the end of 2016. In an interview, he opened up about his relation and said, “This year both of us are extremely busy, so there won't be any time for the marriage. We have planned to tie the knot by the end of next year. Both of us have agreed on that.”
“Both of us are sure about the relationship and if we don't open about it now, it would be showing disrespect to the relationship. I am 33 now and it is time I have my family. Even Katrina wants that. I have grown up in a family where film is everything. So, I know the importance of gossip and my 'funda' is simple. When there is gossip, try not to react and it is advisable not to think too much about yourself.”
Ranveer Singh has high energy levels
il Dhadakne Do” actor Ranveer Singh seems to be blessed with really high energy levels. When asked, he says, “I naturally have a lot of energy. I never thought that I have some extra energy or anything. It's just that now that I'm so called famous- people write about me. Everybody seems to be writing that I have a lot of energy. So I thought that maybe the case if so many people are saying it. But they are the same things my teachers used to write on my report card. They used to write 'He's got great amount of energy, he's gregarious, vivacious, garrulous' all such remarks were there on my report card. Nothing has changed. So I've always been like this.” With the kind of dedication and energy he puts into his work, Ranveer managed to create an impression from the earliest days of his career. “I don’t do anything just for the
Bappi Lahiri to Dad didn't ask get Lifetime Salman to launch me: Achievement Award Govinda's daughter
inger and composer Bappi Lahiri will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award at the S a n Francisco Global Movie Fest, this year. The 62- year -old Bengali who popularised synthesised disco music in the 1980s, is synonymous to Indian disco culture. The first music director to get the China Award in Beijing, Bappi entered the Guinness Book of World Records for recording over 180 songs for 33 films in 1986. Ecstatic about the honour, he says,“It feels great when the audiences love you. It is this adulation that keeps us alive and going. Eagerly looking forward to the San Francisco Global Movie Fest this August.” The event is scheduled on 7th August.
Anushka goes mum on Virat and her wedding!
ollywood a c t o r Govinda's daughter Tina Ahuja has cleared the air about her father asking super star Salman Khan to launch her in the industry. Rumours were ripe that “Dabangg” was originally intended to star Tina Ahuja opposite Salman, but opted for Sonakshi Sinha later. The speculations were further triggered when the budding actress accompanied him to the IIFA Awards, 2007. “It was said that my dad asked him to launch me. But it is not true. That was just a rumour. I was never going to be launched by him. It was all created by the media” she said. “I have met him just twothree times. I was too shy to talk to him. He is my father's friend, not mine.”
sake of it. For me, I don’t even live my life for the sake of it. Just because I have this life and I’m going to live it – no. I have to do something with everything. I’m not really old, and I’m not really wise; I’ve just started a career, but in my limited experience I understand the value of opportunities and the fragility of life in general. When I hurt my back in 'Lootera,' I was lying there not knowing if I could dance or do action ever again. I couldn’t even stand on my feet. When I had dengue, the doctors had pretty much said, ‘you were incredibly fit going into the disease, and that’s why you were able to fight it off. You pretty much hit rock bottom for 24 hours and we would have put you in the
ICU a n d you would have been fighting for your life.’ I lost my best friend last month very tragically. That’s why I don’t take life and life’s opportunities for granted.”
Deepika joins MAMI fest's board of trustees
e e p i k a Padukone joins Anurag Kashyap, Farhan Akhtar and Karan Johar in the board of trustees of the Mumbai Academy of the Moving Image film festival. “MAMI is India’s leading film festival and I am proud to be part of this festival. It’s a wonderful space to discover and nurture fresh talent, build audiences and interact with other talent from across the world,” Deepika said. After facing a lot of hurdles last year, new chairperson Kiran Rao and film critic Anupam Chopra, has arranged a new board of trustees that also include Riteish Deshmukh and Siddharth Roy Kapoor. The festival showcases latest cutting-edge independent cinema, art house fare alongside Bollywood, Hollywood and cult international movies.
hile Indian cricketer Virat Kohli can't stop showcasing his love for girlfriend Anushka Sharma, the “PK” actress sticks to keeping her business personal. When recently asked to confirm if they are going to get married, the actress not only went curt, but also gave a cold shoulder to the journalist. In an embarrassing incident at the “PK” success bash, Anushka’s entry at the event made the bandwalas play the IPL tune, turning the Bollywood beauty red in the face. If that wasn’t enough, she went really crisp when asked about her wedding with Virat. Someone from the media asked her about her wedding and the lady retorted asking the same question to the journalist. She argued that she can ask him the same question too. She then declared that she won’t talk about it and stormed off. Well, all this fidgeting makes one think.
Govinda, Karishma perform on DID Super Moms finale
ollywood fans were in for a surprise when Dance India Dance Super Moms makers arranged for Govinda and Karishma Kapoor to match dance steps after a long time in the season finale that aired on June 13. Describing the experience, the comic actor said, “It was a nostalgic moment when we danced again together after a long time. The roaring applause we received on the sets of 'Super Moms' reminded me of the kind of love and adulation we enjoyed when these songs had just released.” The actors were last seen together in 'Shikari,' 2000 and have delivered several super hits together. Govinda was a judge with choreographers Terence Lewis and Geeta Kapoor on the reality show that aired on Zee TV.
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
21st June- International Day of Yoga
21st June was declared as the International Yoga Day by the United Nations General Assembly on 11th December 2014. The declaration came after the call for the adoption of 21st June as International Yoga Day by Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi during his address to UN General Assembly on 27thSeptember 2014, wherein he stated, “Yoga is an invaluable gift of India's ancient tradition. It embodies unity of mind and body; thought and action; restraint and fulfilment; harmony between man and nature; a holistic approach to health and well-being. It is not about exercise but to discover the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and the nature. By changing our lifestyle and creating consciousness, it can help us deal with climate change. Let us work towards adopting an International Yoga Day.”
l Lecture on Dharma- the principle of perpetual sustenance of the universe. Saturday 27th June, 3:30pm. Free admission. Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan. 4A, Castletown Road, London W14 9HE. Contact: 020 7381 3086. l Raghu Dixit. Saturday 20th June, 7:30pm. RNCM, Manchester. l Free 2 hour basic first aid skills course. Sunday 21st June, 1pm- 3pm. Hanuman Chalisa. Every Saturday, 12pm. Bhajans. Sunday 21st June, 3pm. Shree Adhya Shakti Mataji Temple, 55 High Street, Cowley, Middlesex UB8 2DZ. l The Navnat Summer Cup. Tuesday 23rd June. Brocket Hall Golf Club, Welwyn, Hertfordshire (Palmerstone Course). Email: firstname.lastname@example.org l Samu Satyanarayan Katha: 51 yajman. Sunday 21st June, 10:30am- 12:30pm. Shri Ranchhodrai Katha by Bharat Bhagat. 20th- 21st June, 7:30pm- 9:30pm. Gujarat Hindu Society. South Meadow Lane, Preston PR1 8JN. Contact: 01772 253901 l Kathak Dance Solo Recital, with Live Music: Nikita Thakrar. Wednesday 24th June, 6:30pm. Tribute to O P. Nayyar: Arpan Kumar & Mita. Thursday 25th June, 6:30pm. The Nehru Centre, 8 South Audley Street, Lomdon W1K 1HF. Contact: 020 7491 3567. l Satsang Sabha. 22nd- 27th June. SKLP Samaj, Crook Street, Bolton BL3 6AS. 26Th June, 6pm- 8pm. Radha Krishna Temple, Schofield Street, Oldham OL8 1QJ. Contact: 020 8838 4900. l Hanuman Chalisa. Sunday 21st June, 11am- 5pm. Social Club Hall, Northwick Park Hospital, Watford Road, Harrow HA1 3UJ. Contact: 020 8459 5758. l Yoga, Sunday 21st June: International Yoga Day, 12pm. South Bank Centre, London. l International Day of Yoga hosted by West London Yog, from 9:15am. First Floor of Sira Cash &amp; Carry, Amrit House, Springfield Road, Hayes UB4 0JT. l International Day of Yoga hosted by Patanjali Yog Peeth (UK) Trust, 12pm- 1pm. Hindu Mandir/ Community Centre, Hereford Road, Lewsey Farm, Luton LU4 0PS. l Yoga Day, 9:30am. 26B Tooting High Street, London SW17 0RG. Contact: 07967 013 871. l Yoga Fair. Archbishop Lanfranc Academy, Mitcham Road, Croydon CR9 3AS. Contact: 07903 223 550. l International Yoga Day, 9:30am- 11am. Bennetts End Community Centre Hall, Gate Croft, Hemel Hempstead, HP3 9LZ. (Bring your own yoga mat). l International Day of Yoga, 9:30am- 1:30pm. Shree Bharatiya Mandal, Indian Community Centre, 103 Union Road, Ashton Under Lyne, Greater Manchester OL6 8JN. Contact: 07739 560 026. l International Day of Yoga: In Aid of St. Luke's Hospice and The Michael Green Foundation, 9:15am- 12:30pm. Heathland School, Eastcote Lane, Harrow, Middlesex HA2 9AG. £20 booking fee. Contact: 07867 383 748. l U.N. International Yoga Day, 6am- 9pm. Alexandra Palace, London N22 7AY. Visit: www.iyd.yoga l Yoga session by Jain Network and Patanjali Yog Peeth (UK). Saturday 20th June, 6:45pm- 8:15pm. Jain Centre, 64-68 Colindale Avenue, London NW9 5DR. Contact: 07794 992 880/ 07530 967 821.
l Yoga Lecture/Talk & Yogasanas- Demonstration. Saturday 20th June, 9:30am- 12pm. South Hall, Edinburgh University, Holyrood. Email Mrs. Sunita Poddar: email@example.com l Celebration of International Day of Yoga by Brahamakumaris, Saturday 20th June, 6am- 8pm. Brahamakumaris, Harmony House, 122 Ross Walk, Leicester. Contact: 020 8727 3350. l Yoga sessions organised by High Commission of India and Government of India Tourist Office, in collaboration with British Wheel of Yoga, Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre and Art of Living, 9am- 2:30pm. Bernie Spain Gardens on south bank of River Thames. Contact: 020 763 23217. l Yoga class by Om Yoga Show, 8am- 7pm. Alexandra Palace, London N22 7AY. Contact: 07956 608 899.
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WIN 2 TICKETS
for the Gujarati play “Gujju Bhai Banya Dabang” Asian Voice is giving the opportunity for someone to win two tickets for the Gujarati play, “Gujju Bhai Banya Dabang”. The play will be taking place in July. In London, the play will be held at Croydon, Wembley, East Ham and Harrow. To win tickets to experience this play at one of the London venues, please answer this simple question: Who is the lead actor of the play, “Gujju Bhai Banya Dabang”? (a) Devang Patel (b) Siddharth Randeria (c) Paresh Rawal Send your answers with your full name, address and contact details to firstname.lastname@example.org As the subject of the email, please mention “Gujju Bhai London”. The closing date for the competition is Monday 6th July 2015.
ARIES Mar 21 - Apr 20
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.
Whether you’re single or attached you’ll have to go through a lot, as deep psychological transformations are taking place in all types of relationships. Don’t be afraid to experiment, trust your hunches, go with your gut feeling. Solutions to minor problems should be considered very carefully.
TAURUS Apr 21 - May 21
It’s all about communications, as they take centre stage this week. Regarding love there will be a struggle between devotion and freedom. You need to feel completely consumed by the passion of your lover, and yet you need personal space to explore your own thing.
GEMINI May 22 - June 22
It is a favourable time for dealing with financial interests with a long-term basis and all jointly held resources. There may be a certain amount of unfinished business to be dealt with. Therefore you will need to adopt a fairly flexible policy in order to accommodate the odd twists and turns of everyday life.
CANCER Jun 22 - Jul 22
You know you’ve got no choice but to streamline and reassess your priorities before haphazardly saying yes to everything that smells like a potential opportunity. Try to create a balance between expansion and conservation. Jupiter in your sign makes you feel invincible, base your decisions on facts.
LEO Jul 23 - Aug 23
Work is going to play a great part for some of you, who are widening their horizons. An important time to build too, as Saturn can be very severe and cold especially regarding relationships. Regardless of the limits, you have the capacity to turn the course of your life in a more fulfilling direction.
VIRGO Aug 24 - Sep 23
If you are your own boss, then you can look forward to a fairly good week. You may find the next seven days a little frustrating, because this is a week where you will need personal space. You may be absorbing new ideas about how to create financial independence, others may not understand, so be careful.
LIBRA Sep 24 - Oct 23
SCORPIO Oct 24- Nov 22
This is a good time to appreciate what you have already created in your life. Of course, there are still challenging issues on both a personal and practical level. To get here you may have overcome obstacles by making important decision and choices that set the direction of your life.
It is certainly a good time to get involved in lively debate. You will begin this week with positive attitude towards life and will have good communication skills. This will also make you feel very confident in all areas of your life. You will continue to wield power and authority in whatever you do. You will also spend a lot of your free time helping charitable institutions.
SAGITTARIUS Nov 23 - Dec 21
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At work sometimes a little upheaval and chaos is exactly what you need to set things right again. There’s no need to be complacent: the time is now. Unpredictable energies continue to influence your health sector, bringing erratic highs and lows. The key for you as always is to remain calm and collected.
CAPRICORN Dec 22 - Jan 20
Responsibility is your key word, especially at work. Set your own goals, rather than trying to meet those set by someone else. Your ability to manage what you have on your plate earns respect from others around you. You will benefit in every way if you learn to self-discipline and pace yourself wisely.
AQUARIUS Jan 21 - Feb 19
If your ambitions have been undefined, don't worry as from now on, you understand exactly what kind of impact you need to make on the world. All those little details should run perfectly, without you constantly worrying. That means you can focus on matters that are important to you. Health-wise you will be feeling fit.
PISCES Feb 20 - Mar 20
New Zealand beat England, lead series 2-1
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor both scored hundreds in a record-breaking stand as New Zealand beat England by three wickets in the third one-day international at the Rose Bowl on Sunday to go 2-1 up in the five-match series. New Zealand, chasing 303 for victory, were struggling at 36 for two. But a stand of 206 between Williamson and Taylor turned the tide, although England dropped both batsmen with Taylor given several reprieves. Williamson made 118 and Taylor 110 - his second century in as many matches after his unbeaten 119 during New Zealand's 13 run-win at The Oval on Friday levelled the series at 1-1. But their stand at the Rose Bowl was a New Zealand record for the third wicket in all ODI cricket, surpassing the 180 put on by Adam Parore and Ken Rutherford against India at Vadodara in 1994. New Zealand lost a
Kane Williamson couple of late wickets and it needed a four by Tim Southee off Ben Stokes to see the World Cup finalists complete victory with an over to spare. England were left regretting being bowled out for 302 with 28 balls of their innings left after skipper Eoin Morgan won the toss. New Zealand's reply got off to a shaky start when Martin Guptill - who made 189 not out in the corresponding fixture on this ground two years ago was lbw for two to an inswinger from left-armer
and Ross Taylor David Willey, called up following Chris Jordan's series-ending side injury. New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum also fell cheaply, lbw for 11 to Durham quick Mark Wood, playing after Liam Plunkett was ruled out with a side strain. Taylor gave a tough chance on 17 when wicket-keeper Jos Buttler, anticipating his sweep off leg-spinner Adil Rashid, just failed to hold what would have been a spectacular one-handed catch. Williamson, mean-
while, reached 50 with an on-driven four off Rashid the first of 18 runs he scored in an over. Taylor was dropped on 67 when Buttler failed to cling on to a one-handed chance off Wood. And he was missed again on 72 when Stokes dropped a sharp chance off a fullblooded hook, with Wood again the unlucky bowler. Williamson then completed an 88-ball hundred, including 11 fours. He was missed twice after reaching three figures, with Wood dropping a sitter at mid-off off Willey when Williamson was on 109. Williamson drove Willey for a seemingly effortless six but next ball he was out when Wood held a far tougher chance than the one he had missed. Taylor, whose hundred came off 105 balls, was eventually out when he played on to Willey. The series continues at Trent Bridge on Wednesday.
ing for a qualification in accountancy, said this Sunday would be a memorable and special day, given it’s also Father’s
Day. Harsukh, who was born in the Kenyan capital Nairobi and came to the UK aged 23, said he hasn’t ridden a bicycle for over 30 years and although a tad nervous, he is very excited and up for the challenge. He is married to Nila and the couple also have another son, Kishan, aged 20. The British Heart Foundation, UK’s number one heart charity, is Santander’s Charity of the Year, which has a fundraising target of £1 million by end of this year. Readers wishing to sponsor Harsukh and Shiv can do so by visiting www.justgiving.com/Hars ukh-Soni
Father-Son to cycle 54 miles for heart charity
By Dhiren Katwa
An adventurous father and son team from Luton will this Sunday (June 21) join thousands of participants for the 54-mile London to Brighton Bike Ride in aid of the British Heart Foundation. A few leisurely jogging sessions prompted Harsukh Soni and his 26-year-old son Shiv, pictured, to sign up to this fundraiser, which this year marks its 40th anniversary. The pair has so far raised around £1,300 towards their £3,000 target. Harsukh Soni, who will turn 53 on June 25, said his employer, Santander, where he works as the UK Head of
Provisions in Finance, would match fund the amount raised. Shiv, who also works at Santander in London and is also study-
Shah Rukh Khan buys stake in Caribbean league
The owners of IPL side Kolkata Knight Riders have bought a stake in Caribbean Premier League franchise Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel. It is the first time an IPL franchise investing in an overseas Twenty20 league. "This is in line with our vision to expand globally. We are thrilled to become part of the cricketing tradition of Trinidad & Tobago," Shah Rukh Khan, co-owner of Knight Riders, said. "The passion for franchise cricket in the Caribbean is evident with the success of CPL and we hope to bring all the best practices of KKR to the T&T franchise." KKR's announcement coincided with Hero Motors, an Indian company, being unveiled as the tournament's title sponsors for 2015. Hero
had been presenting sponsors in 2014 for two of the six CPL teams, champions Barbados Tridents and St Lucia Zouks. Red Chillies Entertainment, the parent company of KKR, has been able to encash on the mass following of two of their co-owners. Khan and Juhi Chawla are popular Hindi film actors and their presence had helped
Knight Riders become one of the first IPL franchises to break even. Indian diaspora being the dominant ethnicity in Trinidad & Tobago, Red Steel was an appealing choice for the Red Chillies management. Venky Mysore, chief executive officer of Red Chillies, hoped that the two-time IPL champions Knight Riders' success would be duplicated in
the CPL. "KKR has been fortunate to be recognized as one of the most professionally managed franchises in IPL," Mysore said. "That experience has encouraged us to expand globally.The idea is to replicate our success in the CPL, keeping the growing interest in this [T20] format in mind." Caribbean cricketers have emerged as the most sought-after overseas lot in the IPL. Offspinner Sunil Narine and allrounder Andre Russell are key players for Knight Riders. The CPL was launched in 2013 with six franchises. Red Steel, lead by Dwayne Bravo, couldn't make it to the final in the first two editions of the tournament.
India drop to 4th in Test rankings
India dropped a place to the fourth spot in the Test rankings, after playing out a rain-enforced draw against hosts Bangladesh in a one-off Test at Fatullah on Sunday. India, England and Pakistan each have 97 points, according to the latest International Cricket Council rankings. But India are ahead of the other two nations when the ratings are calculated beyond the decimal point. India have 97.47 points, marginally ahead of England on 97.33 while Pakistan have 96.75 points. South Africa heads the list with 130 points, ahead of second-placed Australia (108) and New Zealand (99). At Fatullah, India declared their first innings at 462/6, Bangladesh were bowled out for 256 and were forced to bat again on the fifth day. The hosts were 23/0 when both captains agreed to call it a draw on Sunday. The draw helped Bangladesh gain two ranking points to reach 41, but remain at their current ninth-spot position behind the West Indies (84).
India’s tour of Zimbabwe confirmed
Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) has confirmed that India will tour Zimbabwe next month after their Bangladesh visit. Indian team will play 3 One Day Internationals and 2 Twenty 20 matches. The news was announced through ZC's official Twitter handle where the chairman of ZC Alistair Campbell said that India’s tour of Zimbabwe was confirmed and would happen in July. It was also stated that all the tour matches would be played in Harare and the schedule would soon be released. "The schedule for the matches is almost done and should be released later this week. However, all the matches will be played in Harare." Another tweet later said that they were very glad to host India and soon after them, New Zealand team would arrive to play in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe's head coach Dav Whatmore showed his happiness on the news by saying that it was good for his team to play more and more matches because that only can improve their standard.
West Indies great Wesley Hall inducted in ICC Hall of Fame
Former West Indian fast bowler Wesley Hall has been inducted in the International Cricket Council (ICC) Hall of Fame, thus raising the tally of West Indian cricketers to 18 in the elite list of 80 players who have been given this prestigious award for their contribution to the sport. Hall, who played 48 Tests from 1958-69 and claimed 192 wickets, was acknowledged with the honour at Sabina Park, Jamaica, where he was presented with a commemorative cap from fellow ICC Cricket Hall of Famer, Courtney Walsh, at the opening day of the second cricket Test between the West Indies and Australia. Hall is the fourth cricketer this year to be given this award after Betty Wilson, Anil Kumble and Martin Crowe, who were inducted during the 2015 World Cup. Delighted after receiving the award, Hall said that he felt privileged and honoured. He said the list has some tremendous cricketers - heroes who have made the game what it was today, and he was humbled to be included among these many greats of the game. He also added that fast bowling was his hallmark and he enjoyed his moments on the cricket field. He dedicated the award to the people of the West Indies, saying that it was not for him only but for all the cricket lovers in the country.
Now, Australia to produce Indianstyle pitches
Now, Cricket Australia (CA) will build subcontinental-style pitches at the Brisbane-based National Cricket Centre (NCC) to prepare batsman and bowlers to perform better on the subcontinent tracks. Australia's massive defeat to Pakistan in UAE last year has prompted them to go for the new experiment. CA is hopeful that the new measure would benefit their batsman and bowlers immensely. These 'hybrid tracks', as they are being called, is the brainchild of Dubai's International Global Cricket Academy curator Tony Hemming, an Australian. A hybrid pitch is extremely spin friendly and the estimated cost of preparing one is A$11,000. These pitches are made of synthetic turf glued on to a concrete slab, with a layer of black soil on top. Water is sprinkled on it and clusters of red hybrid grass allowed to grow through the broken soil to produce unpredictable variation. "We prepared it last year. The hybrid pitch has been of great help so far. Though it's not exactly like the subcontinent, it is pretty close to it," Troy Cooley , NCC chief coach, said. "Our boys grow up on fast and bouncy tracks in Australia. We've got to do things differently to produce quality spinners. We've consulted curators from the subcontinent. We want our next generation of players to play good, competitive cricket in all conditions," Cooley, said in Chennai.
www.abplgroup.com - Asian Voice 20th June 2015
Rain truncated India-Bangladesh Test ends in draw
India settled for a draw against Bangladesh in the rain-marred one-off Test which was interrupted by downpours on all 5 days. With rain playing spoilsport on all 5 days, draw was the only result possible. Now, the teams will be involved in a 3-match ODI series starting in Dhaka on June 18. With more than 250 overs lost during the entire duration of the match, the visitors would feel unlucky that they didn't even get three full days of cricket which could have decisively tilted the match in their favour. Virat Kohli's boys were superior in all departments and would certainly have a psychological advantage going into the three-match ODI series. In reply to India's first innings score of 462 for six, Bangladesh, resuming at 111 for three after the opening session was washed out, faced the ignominy of being shot out for 256 in 65.5 overs - 7 runs short of the followon. While Ashwin, with 5/87 from 25 overs, bamboozled the Bangladeshi
batsmen with vicious turn and bounce, Harbhajan (3/64 in 17.5 overs) also justified his inclusion in the side bowling well in patches to become the ninth highest Test wickettaker in the history of the game, surpassing Pakistan legend Wasim Akram. In fact, Kohli probably wanted to drive home a point by asking Bangladesh to follow-on in what was an inconsequential final hour of play on the fifth day where only two sessions were possible due to overnight rain. When play was finally called off, Bangladesh
were 23 for no loss in the 15 overs that were bowled in their second innings. For Bangladesh, Imrul Kayes (72) has been the top-scorer but it was young debutant Litton Kumar Das, who played a lovely cameo hitting a quickfire 44 off 45 balls with eight fours and a six before being gobbled by Rohit Sharma at backward short leg off Ashwin. Another youngster Soumya Sarkar (37) also showed his attacking prowess but could not convert his start. The two sessions on the day were dominated by Ashwin as
he first got Shakib al Hasan (9) when the lefthander tried to cut a delivery which bounced a shade extra and Wriddhiman Saha took a smart catch behind the stumps. Left-handed Soumya came in and counter-attacked the Indian spin duo as runs came at a fair clip. Soumya for good measure pulled Ashwin for a boundary and followed it with a lofted drive over mid-on. Left-hander Imrul Kayes was also hitting the occasional boundary as the scoreboard kept tick-
ing during their 51-run stand for the fifth wicket. Harbhajan bowled the occasional good delivery but was guilty of bowling a boundary ball in each over early on in his spell when he was trying to settle down. However the 'Turbanator' got his second victim when he removed an in-form Kayes (72), who misjudged the length while charging out. The veteran offie had shortened the length and delivery also had turn and bounce which beat the left-handed opener as Wriddhiman got his third victim of the innings with a neat stumping. Kayes became Harbhajan's 415th Test match wicket as he climbed to ninth place in the all-time highest wicket-takers' list in the longer version leaving behind Akram's 414 scalps from 102 games. In the very next over, Soumya, who had reached a quickfire 37, paid for his indiscretion as he played a lazy shot far away from his body to give Varun Aaron his first victim of the
match. But India were in for some surprise as Litton started taking apart the bowling. He first swept Harbhajan for a boundary and then pulled Aaron over wide mid-on for a second boundary. When Ashwin came back into the attack, Litton lofted him for Bangladesh's first six and then slog swept him for boundary. Umesh Yadav paid for being erratic as he was first cut and then flicked for a boundary as he crossed 30 in no time. Shuvagata Hom (9), who was defending dourly at the other end, however, became Ashwin's fourth scalp as the turn and bounce got the better of him when he lobbed one to Rohit Sharma at backward short-leg with score at 219 for seven when tea was called. Once Litton got out after tea, a followon looked imminent as Harbhajan accounted for Mohammed Shahid and Jubair Hossain was runout due to some smart work by Wriddhiman, who was brilliant behind the stumps
Asian Voice weekly news paper (Issue 7)