First & Foremost Asian Weekly in Europe
Vol 46 | Issue 121
A R RAHMAN TM
22nd July to 28th July 2017 SEE INSIDE
Entrepreneur and philanthropist Rami Ranger celebrates his 70th Birthday with style See P15 Karnataka wants to have a ‘state flag’ See P23
Chinese army conducts live-fire drills in Tibet See P26
BJP picks Venkaiah Naidu for Vice-President
Let noble thoughts come to us from every side
Unhappy fans march out of Arena, demand refund for ticket money Venkaiah Naidu (centre) with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah
The Narendra Modi government has picked Union Urban Development and I&B Minister M Venkaiah Naidu as India's next vice-presidential candidate. BJP president Amit Shah made the announcement at a press conference held after a meeting of the Parliamentary Board. Choosing the senior BJP leader as the VP candidate is a well-thought out and balanced decision considering Ram Nath Kovind as the NDA's presidential candidate, and Naidu's experience as Chairman of the Rajya Sabha. It is no secret that the BJP holds plans to expand its influence in the South. Branding Naidu can be seen as a symbol of goodwill for the region. He was initially seen as among the couple of picks for President until Modi decided against relieving any of his cabinet colleagues for Rashtrapati Bhavan. “He is a disciplined party cadre and accepted the decision happily,” Shah said when asked if Naidu was happy with the position. Continued on page 26
Rupanjana Dutta Music composer A R Rahman has found himself in the middle of a language war a week after he performed at a concert at Wembley Arena on 8th July. Social media was abuzz with disappointment after a section of the audience at the concert reportedly walked out, alleging he played more Tamil numbers than Hindi ones. The show was initially meant to happen in November 2016, but got cancelled and postponed to July 2017. Sources reveal it even changed sponsors. Many Indians living in the UK, booked tickets, some reading about it on Rahman's
Facebook page, some looking at posters in their local corner shops and some read widely circulated messages on social media. Tickets were sold at various prices, and the Arena could hold upto 12,500 people. The show started and Rahman went on a musical journey of 25 years, but many offended audience walked out, as neither they could understand nor relate to the language of the songs being played. They tweeted, they wrote to the organisers and the media got involved. As a community newspaper, some people approached Asian Voice too. Twitter went into frenzy, people called non-Tamils intolerant towards any language other than Tamil, some justified Rahman’s
roots and a lot more followed. Some people even demanded a refund for their tickets. What people did not at all address is the actual problem here. It is not having to hear songs unfamiliar to one's taste, it is actually the feeling of not knowing what the evening could have in store, especially when it involved payments. Asian Voice spoke to many people who went to the show and here are our findings: First, the show was called 'yesterday, today and tomorrow. 25 years of musical journey.' Some people claim it was called 'netru, indru, nalai' which means yesterday, today and tomorrow in Tamil. Continued on page 16
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Keith Vaz, MP
Dinesh Shonchhatra Dinesh Shonchhatra is well renowned Independent Mortgage Broker with over 25 yearsâ€™ experience. He is proprietor of Major Estates Financial Services and his Estate Agency, MAJOR ESTATES SALES & LETTINGS businesses. Dineshâ€™s passion, knowledge, enthusiasm for Mortgages, added to his desire of customer service and satisfaction, is valued by the countless clients who come to him mainly from referrals. His numerous achievements in the industry include receiving the prestigious Best Mortgage Adviser award at Claridges by Mortgage Times. Mortgage Champion of the Year award (two years in a row), Diamond Award with Network Mortgage Power. He is regular guest on Zee Companion TV speaking and taking questions on mortgage related business topics. Dineshâ€™s qualifications include CEMAP, DipMAP, MAQ, FRNAEA. He continues his personal development and keeps up to speed on Industry and regulatory developments. Despite his success, Dinesh remains humble and recognises and gives back to the community by supporting local causes including being past President and on-going supporter of Lions Club, Patron of The Hare Krishna Temple and the Lohana community. Dinesh is married to Madhu and has three sons. He enjoys sports playing cricket and is a supporter of Nottingham Forest. 1) Which place or city or country do you most feel at home in? I have associations with 3 continents. I was born in Bugiri, Uganda and at the age of 10 moved to Gujarat, India where I
lived for 10 years. I learnt about how people struggle to make ends meet. Then I moved to London, England with only 50 pence in my pocket. I built my life and career in London where I have lived, worked and
achieved my goals and this is where I feel and call my â€œhomeâ€?. 2) What are your proudest achievements? I have worked in the Mortgage industry for over 25 years and have been fortunate to receive regular recognition and several awards including receiving the prestigious â€œBest Mortgage Brokerâ€? award in England South by Mortgage Times at Claridges Hotel. 3) What inspires you? In helping people realise their dreams in terms of property ownership. Rather than just treat them as routine â€œmortgage casesâ€?. I understand the importance to them and appreciate the impact upon their lives. It gives me great satisfaction to see them progress and achieve their dreams. 4) What has been the biggest obstacle in your career? Let me state that I am an advocate, recognise and support Industry Rules, Regulations and processes that are necessary. However, I feel that there is somewhat â€˜over regula-
tionâ€™ and unnecessary rules, bureaucracy and high costs of indemnity fees. I feel that these are becoming obstacles for growth and particularly for new entrants to the industry who find it difficult and either donâ€™t join or leave the industry. Just because there are a few bad apples in the industry, doesnâ€™t mean that all good practitioners should be penalised with red tape. 5) Who has been the biggest influence on your career to date? There are many who have influenced me in my career. However, one figure that is prominent is Brian Clough. His incredible achievement of taking two unfancied clubs with little money (Nottingham Forest and Derby County) to the Football league title and European success, taught and inspired me about how to manage with little resources and overcome barriers. 6) What is the best aspect about your current role? Helping people realise their dreams in terms of property ownership.
Man attacked with stun gun at his own front door Two men who attacked a victim with a stun gun before attacking his mother are wanted by the police. The man in his 40s suffered the vicious attack after answering his front door in Ventnor Avenue, Stanmore at about 9am on Thursday, June 15. The thugs shot him the stun gun before repeatedly kicking and punching him when he fell to the floor. His mother was attacked when she came to the door to see what was going on. The men then left the property and were seen running towards Weston Drive. The man was taken to a north London hospital and
has since been discharged after being treated for minor injuries and his mother was treated for minor injuries by the London Ambulance Service. The suspects are both described as black males of
slim build in their late 20s. A 23-year-old man was arrested near to the scene on 15 June but it was quickly established he was not involved and he was released with no further action. Investigating officer from Harrow CID Detective Constable Barry Holland said: "This was a nasty pre-planned attack which has left the victim and his family terrified to
be in their own home - a place where they should feel safe. "I would urge anyone who recognises these two men, or has information on their whereabouts, to contact Harrow CID as soon as possible. The information you provide will be treated in strict confidence. Alternatively you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously. We are determined to bring those responsible for this shocking unprovoked attack to justice." Anyone who witnessed the attack or has information should contact Harrow CID on 0208 733 3445, on 101 or via Twitter @MetCC or contact Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555 111 or visit www.crimestoppers-uk.org
7) And the worst? None, I love everything about my job and life. 8) What are your long term goals? To simply continue with what I do in helping people with mortgages for home ownership. To also continue with the charity and community work that I am involved with organisations such as Lions Club, Lohana Community, Hare Krishna mandir as patron amongst others. It gives me satisfaction in giving something back to society and help the less fortunate and vulnerable people. 9) If you were Prime Minister, what one aspect would you
change? I would definitely have a second referendum and firmly believe for the UK to remain in the Europe Union. We should have a close relationship with Europe but with better controls over matters such as immigration. I feel immigration overall is good for our economy. 10) If you were marooned on a desert island, which historical figure would you like to spend your time with and why? Sachin Tendulkar â€“ An amazing person whoâ€™s success is outstanding yet effortlessly achieved with his cool temperament and no controversies during distinguished career.
A12 lorry crash driver Gurdip Johal 'unaware of heavy load'
The lorry involved in the crash contained an industrialsized battery (INSET: Gurdip Johal)
A driver who died when his lorry came off a bridge and crashed on to a dual carriageway was unaware of the heavy load of batteries in his trailer, an inquest has heard. Gurdip Johal, 30, from Witham, Essex, was killed in the crash on the A12 just north of the town in February. The inquest heard he was taking a trailer for a test drive and had not been able to look at its contents. He died as the result of an accident, the coroner ruled. The hearing in Chelmsford was told the trailer had been submitted to Mr Johal's employer Harris Trucks for a preMOT assessment by another company. Mr Johal had taken it up the A12 northbound to Kelvedon then back down
southbound, before he lost control after turning back off the A12 on to Colemans Bridge on his way back to the base. PC Dave Howard told the inquest: "It was the first time he [Mr Johal] had driven this trailer and he had been unaware of the trailer's high centre of gravity." He said as well as the high centre of gravity, the crash was the result of three other factors which were the speed, the curvature of the road and the camber. The inquest heard the truck struck a tree on the way down and hit a lamppost. Senior coroner Caroline Beasley-Murray said Mr Johal was "a muchloved family member" who had been killed in a "tragic accident".
Losing ‘face’: India-China standoff The India-China standoff on the contested tri-junction on of Bhutan, Sikkim and Tibet continues, with a noticeable reduction in the emanating from Beijing. In a column in the Times of India, Kanti Bajpai averred that both parties should to an unspecified formula, enabling them to save ‘face’. He was clearly unaware that saving ‘face’ would open a can of worms. Beijing h as reacted furiously to international criticism on its callous treatment of Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo who died of cancer last week. Snarling attacks have been directed at the United States, Europe and Taiwan for their condemnation of his imprisonment as an advocate of human rights and his exposure of its widespread abuses across his country, foremost of which was the brutal suppression of the J une 1989 massacre of student demonstrators at Beijing’s Tienanmen Square. China’s then paramount leader Deng Xiaoping acted in the way he did, in giving orders to the military to shoot to kill, was driven by an apparent loss of ‘face’. The Dalai Lama’s flight to India in April 1959 and the asylum granted him as a ‘guest’ rather as refugee by Jawaharlal Nehru was also perceived by Beijing as a loss of ‘fa ce’. The only acceptable exit from this hall of mirrors for Chinese rulers, as the British envoy to the Court of Chien Lung in 1793 was to discover, was the proverbial kowtow to the Chinese Emperor, which he refused to do and was promptly banished. The Dutch and Portuguese ambassadors, for whom trade transcended all else, performed the obligatory kowtow and were surprised to learn many years later that H olland and Portugal had been listed in a royal edict as China’s tributary states.. Permitting the Dalai Lama to travel to Arunachel Pradesh or inviting to an international function at Rashtrapati Bhavan by India’s president, according to a protest note, violated China’s ‘core’ interests. This has the appearance of a karmic cycle of beginning without end. Normal international relations cannot exist in t his fish bowl. India has acted, thus far, with admirable restraint in face of Chinese thunderbolts. Senior Indian ministers have conducted a valuable and informed discussion with leaders of Opposition parties and won their full support to the government to stand firm without indulging in
provocation, but open to a diplomatic settlement based on reason and common sense. It takes two to tango. War in this day and age its costs, as the United States has come belatedly to realize, following its illfated military interventions in Vietnam and the Middle East, yield only a harvest of sorrows. But wedded to nostrums of Manifest Destiny, it keeps careering down the avenues of folly. China, likewise, is trapped in primordial conceits. Armed conflict with India or anybody else, would ensure not liberation from the past, but instead lead to a mountainous mortgage and an uncertain future. War with India would also send alarm bells ringing along the corridors of the Great Powers, with unforeseen consequences. The American strategic thinker and author, Edward Luttwak, in his book, China’s ‘Rise versus the Logic of Strategy’ lays out the weaknesses of Chinese diplomacy and its failures, foremost of which have been, he s ays, its dealings with India and Vietnam. The latter, once a Chinese ally, is now a bitter adversary and ally of India. Preparing for military contingencies is wise, right and proper. It is a deterrent, bringing home to a wouldbe belligerent the costs it might entail. A defensive posture by definition is not provocative but bespeaks the ability to translate defence into attach as the logic of war deman ds. Indian air power is constrained by the willful neglect and inertia of past governments and also the present one. The country’s air chiefs have been hoarse in their hitherto futile attempts to draw attention of the political leadership to the steady diminution of operational squadrons from the required 42 to the present 30. That remains an Indian constraint. As a postscript, one may make reference to the behavior of Chinese officials at Buckingham Palace reviewing the security arrangements for President Xi Jinping’s presence at a banquet held in his honour as a State guest. Her Majesty the Queen, the soul of discretion, had no hesitation in making known publicly her distaste of the officials’ arrogant deportment. The arrogance is in-bred and of longstanding practice with disdained foreigners..Enough said.
Japanese take on Malabar drill Janan’s Ambassador to India, Kenji Hiramatsu, was visibly upbeat about the trilateral naval exercise in the Indian Ocean between India, the United States and Japan. It was, he explained to an Indian reporter in Delhi, ‘ very significantly politically and of symbolic value, that the three countries are working together to safeguard the rule of law and maritime security in the region.’ Mr Hiramatsu said his country’s relations with India were built on a solid platform ‘for safeguarding peace and security in the Indo- Pacific region,’ and that there would be further exchanges on ground and air forces. He moved on to speak of cooperation between and Japan in Africa under the rubric of the Asia-Africa Growth Corridor initiative. India and Japan would be
partners in this pilot project for African development. Indian enterprise allied to Japan’s proven technologies would work for the welfare and betterment of Africa’s peoples. Mr Hiramatsu referred to India’s great experience in East Africa as a possible gateway to the rest of the continent. The Japanese Ambassador’s measured tones and carefully calibrated words avoided any mention of China, as one would expect of a seasoned diplomat, but only the blind and deaf could miss his subtext, China and its muscle-flexing in the South China Sea, and its parallel ambitious One Road One Belt scheme to encircle globe with an integrated land and sea transport system. India and Japan are preparing to meet the Chinese challenge noiselessly, but effectively. Game on!
Philanthropist extraordinary A quiet man and modest to boot, is how close friends and associates describe Ajit Jain. American multibillionaire, Warren Buffet, a legendary name in the business world, stellar philanthropist himself, Chairman of the US-based Berkshire Hathaway Inc’s Insurance Group, swears by him. ‘If there were ever to be another Ajit and you could swap me for him, don’t hesitate. Make trade.’ Mr Jain has earned the many laurels that have come his way. He has transformed a small, largely unknown company, into one of the biggest in America and the world in the years since he joined it in 1986. More remarkable: Mr Jain, then, had no background or special knowledge of insurance. Amidst this success, he remained true to his Indian roots and his alma mater, the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (West Bengal) to which, he believed, he owed much of his subsequent rise to dizzying eminence. It was at this IIT that Mr Jain graduated in mechanical engineering and then went to Harvard University for his MBA. These IITs, established in the mid-1950s, have become the crown jewels of Indian science and engineering. In acknowledgement of his debt, Mr Jain has transferred his stock holding to the trading account of
the IIT KGP US Foundation, a gesture that the Foundation has described as ‘unique’ because it is rare for an alumnus to make a donation in stocks. IIT Kharagpur receives crores of rupees in donations from alumni every year, but Mr Jain’s contribution has been deemed ‘special.’ IIT Kharagpur Director Partha Pratim Chakrabarti said, ‘We are very happy and proud.’ However, the Jain story doesn’t end here. His close friend of many years, Vinod Gupta, also an IIT Kharagpur alumnus and generous donor to its coffers, says: ‘Ajit’s money will be used for many different purposes. This is just the start. He is going to give more money. Ajit is going to do a lot of big things for IIT Kharagpur. He is very charitable guy. He is not going to leave his money to his children. He is going to leave all his money to charity.’ Mr Gupta told how rich Americans were prone to making bequests to their alma mater rather than leaving their entire fortune to their children. So, too, do local American communities across the country.. They all appreciate the myriads of contributions their alma maters have made to their enrichment in education, moral purpose and awareness of social responsibilities. This is what makes America great. Quite so.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
It takes more courage to examine the dark corners of your own soul than it does for a soldier to fight on a battlefield - W. B. Yeats (1865-1939)
Bob Blackman MP for Harrow East
Celebrating Heroes, Not Terrorists As London and Manchester recover from recent terror attacks, we now hear of a gruesome attack on the Amarnath pilgrims in Anantnag, Jammu & Kashmir in India. The group, who were on their annual pilgrimage, were mostly from Gujarat. This was yet another attempt by terrorists to disrupt a most revered pilgrimage for Hindus. As I write this article, I reflect that today, 13th July, marks the anniversary of the first ever organised communal slaughter in the recorded history of modern Kashmir, which took place in 1931. Hundreds of Hindus (Kashmiri Pandits) were looted, attacked, raped, molested and forcibly converted to Islam. Yet here we are, 86 years later, still witnessing horrendous attacks on innocent Hindus in the region. The recent terror attack on Westminster Bridge saw ordinary men and women stepping in to save lives and help protect each other, and PC Keith Palmer gave his life valiantly standing between the terrorist attacker and the hundreds of people working inside the Houses of Parliament. The bus carrying the Amarnath pilgrims also saw the emergence of an ordinary hero, Salim, the bus driver who, despite being attacked, made sure that the bus didn’t stop and this helped minimise the casualties. In sharp contrast to the actions of these heroes, there have been unfortunate attempts to celebrate and glorify terrorists such as Burhan Wani, not just in streets of downtown Kashmir, but in the heart of busy cities of United Kingdom. The recent attempt to celebrate Burhan Wani day in Birmingham was a direct challenge to the very fabric of the UK’s harmony and principles of tolerance. No sooner than this permission was sought by protestors, in the name of holding a peace rally, the permission for it was withdrawn by the local council following complaints – a move I welcome wholeheartedly as a step in the right direction in curbing the propagation of a mindset that is evil and spreads hatred. As the Member of Parliament for a constituency that is a melting pot of world ethnicities and cultures, I fully reject any attempts to radicalise and brainwash young people into celebrating an ideology that teaches hatred and violence. The mastermind behind the Amarnath pilgrim attack, Abu Ismail, is a Pakistani national and Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) terrorist with direct links to Salahuddin and Hizbul Mujahideen, the jihadist terror group which was recently added to the list of Specially Designated Global terrorists by the US. It is no coincidence that there are close commonalities and linkages between each of these organisations and the individuals supporting their activities, directly or indirectly. Continued on page 6 Editor: CB Patel
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Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Britain First posts video of confrontation with city Muslims A heated confrontation between Britain First’s deputy leader and a Muslim bookseller in Birmingham has been caught on camera. The seven minute long video featuring Jayda Fransen was shared on the right-wing group’s Facebook page this week. It is just one of two videos taken of the confrontation on July 13 when the firebrand deputy leader took to Birmingham’s streets to confront Islamic Dawah stallholders. A small crowd gathers while Ms Fransen approaches the man in traditional Islamic dress outside Waterstones near the Bullring and begins to argue loudly. A statement accompanying the video read: “Britain First confronts Dawah stall in Birmingham”. During the exchange, the pair discuss verses from the Quaran about the role of women.
Ms Fransen can be heard telling the stallholder that she knows the purpose of him being there is trying to spread to word of Islam, to which the stallholder replied that he ‘wanted to help people get to paradise’. Later, after being asked to provide examples for her argument from the Quaran, she told the stallholder that “I find it remarkable that I know your book better than you.” Zkhn questioned why Ms Fransen was attacking the man, writing: “What
is her problem? I thought in England we are allowed to have freedom of expression...” Joyce Clayton agreed writing: “Everyone should love this country, it allows freedom of speech, long may it continue to do so. Anderson disagreed saying: “I doubt these stalls do anything for the city or to promote the city, if anything they enforce the stereotype.” NoImSpartacus added: “Why not set up a speaker’s corner like they do in Hyde Park, London... New Street is not a nice place for this and drives away tourists who would otherwise spend money.” The far-right group was formed in 2011 by anti-abortion campaigner Jim Dowson and campaigns against multiculturalism, Islam, immigration and abortion.
Smuggler tried to bring £1.2m of heroin into UK in suitcase A Birmingham smuggler has been jailed for trying to bring £1.2 million of heroin into the UK via Heathrow Airport in the bottom of his suitcase. Mohammed Mazhar, 48, of Bordesley Green East, was sentenced to six years imprisonment when he appeared at Isleworth Crown Court on July 12. Mazhar was stopped by Border Force officers at 8.50pm on March 26 when he arrived at the airport’s Terminal 4 on a flight from Pakistan which travelled via Doha.
During a search of baggage Border Force officers discovered heroin which had been hidden in the bottom of his suitcase. Further drugs were found concealed in a hollowed out wooden frame he was carrying in his luggage. More than nine kilos of the Class A drug was discovered which had an estimated street value of £1.2 million. The case was referred to the National Crime Agency’s (NCA) Border Policing Command and, following questioning, Mazhar was
charged with attempting to import a Class A drug. Phil Douglas, Director, Border Force Heathrow, said:
“The expertise of Border Force officers not only kept these dangerous drugs off the UK’s streets, but was also the vital first step in bringing Mazhar to justice. “This sentencing serves as a clear warning to anyone thinking of smuggling drugs into the UK - we will catch you and you will be put before the courts to face justice.” Anyone with information about activity they suspect may be linked to smuggling should call our hotline on 0800 59 5000.
Professional cricketer Shiv Thakor pictured, has been arrested after claims he indecently exposed himself to women on two separate occasions, his club, Derbyshire, has announced. The 23-year-old former England Under-19 international, who was born and grew up in Leicestershire, was suspended on full pay by the club last week pending an investigation by Derbyshire Police. "The club has been advised that one of our players, Shiv Thakor, has been arrested by police investigating allegations concerning the player when he was not
on duty with the club," Derbyshire County Cricket Club said in a statement. "In consultation with the player's representatives, the player continues to be suspended on full pay pending the outcome of the investigations." Thakor began his career at Leicestershire and represented England from under15 to under-19 level before joining Derbyshire ahead of the 2015 campaign. He was named captain of the England U19s for their tour of South Africa in January 2013, but suffered a broken finger in the opening match and missed the rest of the trip.
Thakor's last appearance for Derbyshire came in a 128run Specsavers County Championship Division Two defeat to Northamptonshire from June 9-11. Derbyshire Police confirmed last week, on June 6, that they were investigating two separate allegations of indecent exposure. "We received a report that a man had indecently exposed himself to women on two separate occasions at a housing development off Radbourne Lane, in Mackworth," a Derbyshire Police statement read. "The incidents happened in June and our officers have
been carrying out their investigations since then. "A 23-year-old man voluntarily attended St Mary's Wharf police station and was interviewed in connection with the alleged offences. He has been released under investigation while our inquiries continue."
Cricketer Shiv Thakor arrested after indecent exposure allegations
Police name man in connection with serious sex offence
Police investigating a serious sex offence on a woman in Leicester have named and issued a photograph of a man they want to speak to. They said 36-year-old Abdul Omid was wanted on suspicion of committing the offence at an address in Eastleigh Road, off Narborough Road, on Friday, July 8 last year. A spokesperson for the force said that since the assault, "exhaustive efforts have been conducted to identify the person or people
responsible for the attack". They added: "As a result of developments in the inquiry, and further forensic investigations, police have today named Omid as wanted for questioning." Police said Mr Omid had strong connections to Leicester, but it was not known whether he was still living in the city. He is 5ft 7ins and has dark hair and "dark eyes", said the force. Detective Constable Gemma Partridge is leading the investigation.
She said: "Recent inquiries and developments now lead us to believe that Omid was involved in what happened last year in
Eastleigh Road. We have conducted numerous inquiries in an attempt to trace him but without success, and I am now turning to the public for their help. I would urge anyone who knows where he is to get in touch with us so he can give us an account of what happened to this woman in Eastleigh Road." Anyone who sees Mr Omid or someone matching his description is urged to call Leicestershire Police immediately on 101.
Mum jailed for faking death so son could claim life insurance
A mother who faked her death in Africa and instructed her teenage son to lodge a £136,000 life insurance claim has been jailed for two and a half years. Arafa Nassib was rumbled when investigators found no trace of her supposed grave in Zanzibar, off the coast of Tanzania, and were told she was living in Canada. Nassib's 18-year-old son Adil Kasim was given a "lenient" 12-month community order at Birmingham Crown Court after the pair, both of Lower Rushall Street, Walsall, admitted conspiracy to defraud Scottish Widows. The court heard Nassib, 48, racked up debts of £80,000 before deciding to travel to Zanzibar, where she was said to have fallen victim to a car crash in April last year. Kasim, an art and design student, was arrested last year after submitting a "false but official-looking" death certificate said to have been issued by a hospital in Tanzania. The court was told Nassib, who came to Britain from Kenya as a refugee in 1998, had built up debts of £80,000 stemming from purchases made at furniture firms BrightHouse and PerfectHome.
Businessman and ex-girlfriend fraudsters ordered to pay back more than £200k
Satpal Singh Mahal and Louise Brown
A businessman and his ex-girlfriend who used bogus identities to steal more than £2 million have been ordered to pay back more than £200,000. Satpal Singh Mahal and Louise Brown used fake names and stolen identities to set up companies and bank accounts online. The pair claimed the companies sold UK media advertising to overseas clients - when in fact none of the companies actually traded and the couple had used them solely to fraudulently claim VAT repayments on fabricated expenses. HMRC said they were caught out when checks made into their VAT returns raised concerns, and each time officers asked to speak with them at their business premises, they said they were too busy to answer questions. Mahal pleaded guilty to committing insurance fraud after he was found to have submitted fake invoices to his insurers, when the couple’s flat was damaged.
Drugs gang jailed for after trying to smuggle heroin
A Birmingham drugs gang who conspired to smuggle up to £19 million of heroin into the UK from Pakistan have been jailed for more than 130 years. The crooks had hid the drugs inside industrial machinery shipped from Lahore, but were arrested following an investigation by the National Crime Agency (NCA). The eight were jailed at Birmingham Crown Court last Friday for a total of 138 and a half years after being convicted of conspiracy to import heroin. Ringleaders Ameran Zeb Khan, 38, Mohammed Ali, 36, and Sajid Hussain, 32, were sentenced to 22 years each. The court previously heard the men had organised two container shipments from Lahore, via Karachi, to the London Gateway Port in February and July last year. Border Force officers searched the July shipment, cutting open the lathes to find 165kg of powdered heroin.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
PM orders investigation into abuse of politicians Prime Minister Theresa May has ordered an investigation into intimidation experienced by candidates during the last election after a barrage of complaints by MPs about death threats and harassment. May asked the committee on standards in public life to prepare a report, saying she was “horrified by stories from colleagues about the scale and nature of the intimidation, bullying and harassment they suffered during the general election," the Guardian reported. May’s announcement came MP's debated about the real life abuses they faced including on social media. Many MPs have already moved to improve their security since Labour’s Jo Cox was murdered by a rightwing extremist in 2016, but a large number have complained of a new level of harassment in the run-up to the 8 June vote. Rehman Chisti the Tory MP for Gillingham and Rainham, said a Labour member in his
Cllr Ameet Jogia
constituency allegedly told him to “fuck off back” to a certain country, which the police are now investigating. Cllr Ameet Jogia, during the 2017 snap election became a victim of a racial abuse too. He was contesting against Labour's Barry gardiner in Brent area.There was a racist grafitti scrawled on the wall of a voting booth in Wembley, in his constituency, that read: “Vote Labour Barry, not Jogia. Keep Pakis out of politics.” The 30-year-old was alerted to the message by one of his supporters who spotted it in a polling booth, at The Ascension
Church in north London. The photo also made rounds on social media, where Ameet's friends and family tried to comfort the Tory candidate. Jogia, who went to investigate shortly before voting closed at 10pm, said he was ‘saddened’ to see the ‘racist’ message still there. “There are very strict rules that no messages should be placed anywhere in the polling station let alone the polling booth that would influence anyone’s decision. This message clearly said ‘vote labour…” He allegedly brought it to the attention of a presiding officer but claims they ‘literally just shrugged their shoulders saying it was 10pm and nothing they could do’, the Metro reported. Jogia then told the Asian Voice, "I have launched a formal complaint with Brent Council and the Electoral Commission as to why such a message was left unnoticed for so long. The authorities are investigating the matter with the police."
Virendra Sharma MP re-elected Chair of influential Indo-British Cross-Party Group Mr Virendra Sharma, Member of Parliament for Ealing Southall, has been re-elected Chair of the Indo-British All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG). Sharma, who has been the Chair for seven years, was unanimously re-elected by the crossparty meeting of members of both Houses of Parliament. The group, of which fellow local MPs Stephen Pound and Seema Malhotra were elected Vice Chairs, works to promote understanding and co-operation between the people and parliamentarians of India and Britain. Mr Sharma is the only first generation member of the Indian diaspora to sit in the House of Commons and has long been a leader on Indian affairs. Earlier this year, he led an international cross-party delegation of parliamentarians to Agra and to Delhi, where they met Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Following the meeting, Mr Virendra Sharma MP said: “I am delighted to once again be re-elected Chair of this group. I have very much enjoyed leading it for the last seven years and look forward to organising some excellent events in the coming year to promote understanding between the Indian and British peoples, and to encourage co-operation
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between businesses and parliamentarians in our two great countries. “The Brexit negotiation period will be a challenging time for the
United Kingdom and I want to do everything I can to encourage further trade and investment opportunities between the UK and India.”
Lord Bilimoria takes £5.8mn profit home Lord Bilimoria, the Cobra Beer founder has taken a cool £5.8m home after the company recorded a year of increased profits despite sinking revenues, the City AM reported. Cobra, a joint venture between brewer and Bilimoria, reportedly recorded a profit of £8.5m for 2016, up from £7.8m in 2015. Turnover was down from £62m to £57m, but reduced spending on marketing and other operating costs apparently helped
the company to increase their profit. It paid out £8m in dividends during the year and £3.8m after the year end. So Lord Bilimoria, who owns a 49% stake, took home £5.8m, the report suggested. 00Meanwhile Molson Coors, which also brews Carling and Coors Light, has decided not to launch a new brand under the name, "Dead Brewers' Society", as it already belonged to a group of British beer enthusiasts.
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Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Formal applause for two new Sikh MPs Dhiren Katwa A special party was thrown by Sikhs for Labour in honour of the two new Sikh MPs recently elected. Held at the Houses of Parliament last Tuesday, Preet Kaur Gill, the first ever Sikh woman MP, as well as Tanmanjeet Dhesi, MP for Slough were introduced by Tom Watson, deputy Leader of the Labour Party. Preet and Tanmanjeet were among six Sikh candidates, the highest number to ever stand at General Election for any political party in the UK. Guests crammed inside the Old Shadow Cabinet Room and were treated to soft drinks and Indian savouries. As we walked from Central Lobby at Westminster towards the Room we were greeted, by chance, by the Rt Hon Keith Vaz who joked, asking if I was leading a delegation. Mr Vaz
Cllr Dhallu, Preet Gill, Jeremy Corbyn, Neena Gill, guest, Tanmanjeet Dhesi
introduced me to Mr Dinesh Patnaik, the Deputy High Commissioner of India, who showed no interest. Observing him, it was pretty much evident that he was only interested in so-called VIPs, and MPs, rather than in ordinary people, an amusing observation I found. Speakers included Leader of the Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn, Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily
Thornberry – a fantastic speaker and Neena Gill CBE MEP, Chair of Sikhs for Labour. Other guests included Matthew Western, MP for Leamington & Warwick, Shabana Mahmood MP, Jaspal, President of the Sikh Society at Birmingham City University, founding Chair of City Sikhs and barrister Jasvir Singh OBE, MPs Valerie Vaz, Pat McFadden, Shabana
Mahmood and Steve McCabe, Cllr Mota Singh from Royal Leamington Spa, Vickram Grewal, Cllr Bawa Singh Dhallu from Sandwell Council. Sikhs for Labour was set up in 2014 to ensure that there was strong Sikh representation on the Labour benches in Parliament, as well as to help guide policy issues for the Party. Neena Gill who was reelected as MEP for West Midlands in 2014, said that the aim of Sikhs for Labour “is to engage Sikhs in the political process, to listen to them, to act on their feedback and to harness their talents and energy in shaping what Labour might be.” According to the 2011 census, the Sikh population in England stands at just over 420,000; almost 3,000 in Wales; 9,000 in Scotland; and 220 in Northern Ireland.
UK's 'youngest' doctor to start work in York hospital A University of Sheffield medical student is thought to be the UK's youngest ever doctor. Arpan Doshi graduated on Monday at the age of 21 years and 334 days. He was accepted on the medicine course aged just 17 after passing a baccalaureate exam while living in the south of France. The youngest medical graduate previously reported was Rachael Faye Hill, who received her medical degree in 2010 aged 21 and 352 days. Despite his age, Mr
Doshi said he had no problem adapting to student life in the UK. “I always wanted to be a doctor. From an early age I was fascinated by how the human body worked and it's good to be able to help people," he said. He moved from India to Aix-en-Provence in 2009 after his engineer father got a job working on a nuclear fusion project. At the age of 16 he sat his International Baccalaureate, the French equivalent of the UK's Alevel exams, passing in
Sheikh helps villagers buy chapel in Cornwall
Village Chapel (INSET: Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum)
The ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, has helped a small Cornish village buy its Methodist chapel. Residents of Godolphin Cross near Helston emailed him in a desperate attempt to raise funds. The village shares a name with the world famous Godolphin stables, founded by the sheikh, Cornwall Live reports. The Godolphin Cross Community Association needed £90,000 to buy the chapel that they intend to convert into a community centre, and had raised £25,000 towards it. It's not known how much was contributed by
the sheikh, but Mr Mckie said "it has pushed us across the line". One villager, Valerie Wallace, had the idea as a last ditch attempt, with the group having failed to raise sufficient funds elsewhere. "We thought nothing of it and then we began to get phone calls from Dubai. We thought we were being hoaxed but it was no hoax," Mr Mckie said. The sheikh, who has been invited to visit the village, was unavailable for comment. The group now needs to raise a further £350,000 to restore the hall.
chemistry, physics, economics, mathematics, Hindi and English. After scoring 41 out of a possible 45 marks in the exam, the University of Sheffield awarded him a £13,000 scholarship towards his medical studies. He will now start his two-year training as a junior doctor at York Teaching Hospital and hopes to later specialise in heart surgery. Mr Doshi said his parents, who have moved back to India, were unaware he was the UK's youngest
doctor. "They are very proud of me and I am very grateful for their support," he said.
A mum-of-five who gave birth just weeks ago has been left too scared to leave the house after she was attacked by a stranger in a shop. Safina Humera, pictured, from Fallowfield, was left with a broken arm after she was shoved to the ground by a woman who went on a rampage attacking random members of the public in Quality Save, in Chorlton Precinct. Safina, who has five children under the age of 13 including a three-weekold baby, was browsing the shelves on Sunday, July 2 with her daughter, when she was suddenly thrown to the ground by the woman. She was left crying on the floor and in agonising pain following the ordeal. Two other women then approached her and told her they had also been hit by the woman. When Safina went to A & E, a scan revealed she had broken her left arm in
the attack. Recalling the incident, she said: “It was horrible, I was in so much pain. We were nearly finished at the shop, when this lady came up shouting and screaming. She was shouting ‘I’m fed up, I’ve had enough.’ “I was crying because of the pain. Two women came over and said she had pushed them as well. “I’m so glad I wasn’t still pregnant. I’m used to doing everything myself. I can’t pick up my babies. I don’t want to go out. I’m so scared, I can’t drive or do the dishes, or do anything.” No one has been arrested in connection with the incident.
Mum-of-five suffers broken arm after being thrown to ground by stranger in shop
Paedophile caught, falls to knees and begs for mercy A pervert who arranged to meet a minor for sex was filmed begging for mercy when he was caught by a group of paedophile hunters. The accused, Praju Prasad, 24, was confronted by group, Guardians of the North at the North Shields Metro Station after he messaged an 'underage' girl who was in fact, a member of the group. Prasad has been handed a nine-month suspended sentence, a £140 fine and ordered to sign the sex offenders register for five years. Messages exchanged between him and the 'girl' shows him asking to “kiss” and “fulfil” the child. He also suggested to “take a room” and “have some fun”. It was also revealed that
Prasad had originally even attempted to book a hotel for the two, but was told that nowhere would accommodate a man and a child. In the clip, that has been doing the rounds in the internet, when confronted by the group, he can be seen getting down on his knees and begging to be left along. One of the group members said, “This highlights the important work that we do. If this man hadn't been caught by us then he could well have gone on to abuse an actual child. We are not happy with the sentence. We believe that judges need to be tougher as this kind of offending needs to be stamped out before more serious crimes are committed.”
Celebrating Heroes, Not Terrorists Continued from page 3 Burhan Wani was certainly no local hero in Kashmir and deserves no praise anywhere. He was a self-styled commander of the Pakistan-supported Hizbul Mujahideen (HM) jihadist terror group whose leader, Syed Salahuddin has just been added (June 27, 2017), by the US Department of State to its list of Specially Designated Global terrorists. The US Department of State designated Salahuddin because he “vowed to block any peaceful resolution to the Kashmir conflict, threatened to train more Kashmiri suicide bombers, and vowed to turn the Kashmir valley ‘into a graveyard for Indian forces.'” Salahuddin maintains an office in Muzaffarabad, capital of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), and receives support from Pakistan’s military and the Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate (ISI). Salahuddin is also Chairman of the United Jihad Council, an umbrella organization that includes HM and also the Lashkare-Taiba and Jaish-eMohammed, two groups that are on the US and United Nations lists of terror organizations. I have tabled an early day motion in Parliament to urge the Government to take severe measures to curb any such activity that supports terrorism in the UK or in other parts of the world, especially India. The EDM reads: “That this House condemns the recent killings of innocent Hindu pilgrims in Anantnag, Jammu and Kashmir in India; recognises it as a gruesome attack on innocent
pilgrims by Lashkar-eToiba, an internationally recognised terrorist group, led by Abu Ismail; urges the UK government to strongly condemn the attack and stand with India in the fight against terrorism; further seeks the UK government to investigate if there are any direct or indirect links to organisations or individuals in the United Kingdom that may be involved in such cross border atrocities in India; urges the Government to reject all forms of terrorism and support to organisations/individuals propagating such ideology and to take strong action against such organisations and individuals in the UK to ensure peace in UK as well as India.” I commend my colleague, Mark Field MP, the Minister of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth office, for his tweet condemning the gruesome attack on the pilgrims in Anantnag. Prime Minister Theresa May said, “Enough is enough”, and that the counter-terrorism strategy will ensure that the police and security services have all the power they need to tackle this attack on the fundamentals of our democracy. Any fight against terrorism is incomplete without the active support from people and their elected representatives so I urge all my colleagues and their constituents to come together in this fight against terrorism and reject all efforts to glorify terrorists and radicalise the youth. The United Kingdom stands together with its friends, especially India, in this fight against terrorism.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Asian Achievers Awards 2017: Nominate those who deserve With the prestigious Asian Achievers Awards in the offing, preparations have gained pace. Every year we ask our readers, and the community, to nominate those they deem worthy of recognition and each year the list appears to have grown longer. As our initiative prides itself in celebrating people who do stellar work in their respective fields, we appreciate the remarkable response. AAA believes that each nominee deserves a mention, which is why, we have decided to mention three nominees each week, throughout the year. It is no secret that women run the world today, overcoming any and every hurdle thrown their way. The Woman of the Year award is a special, highly regarded recognition that honours those females who have made a difference in their cho-
0Manjit K Gill (centre) with Michelle Matherson, Shiver TV(Left) and Pragnesh Modhwadia, Axiom Stone (right) Charity. Excelling in sports, one of the leading fields of the country, is not a small feat; and AAA could not be more proud of members of the Asian community who time and again remind us what they are capable off. Sports Personality of the Year award 2016 was deservedly taken away by Paralympian, Ryan Raghoo. Other nominees included, Harleen Kaur, Martial Arts; Myra Nasim, Karate; and Daanyal Spalding, Golf. If you know of any over-achieving BritAsian who deserves to be accoladed, nominate them online at www.asianachiever-
Is there someone you know who has broken boundaries and deserves recognition for their unique contribution to the Asian Community or the Nation
Nominate them for the 17th Asian Achievers Awards
The prestigious Asian Achievers Awards is hosted every year by UKâ€™s leading news weeklies Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar to honour British Asians par excellence.
Deadline for nomination 31st July, 2017 NOMINATION FORM Please tick the appropriate category Achievement in Community Service In recognition for an individuals service to community.
Woman of the Year The award will recognise and honour a woman who has made a significant mark in any chosen field. Sports Personality of the Year Awarded for excellence in sports. Business Person of the Year Awarded to a business person who is a success in every sense of the word and can demonstrate a genuine passion for social issues. Lifetime Achievement Award To honour those individuals, who during their lifetime, have made immense contributions in any given field. This remarkable individual can be marked as an example for the younger generation.
Ryan Raghoo (centre) with Gordon Greenidge (left) and Paresh Davdra, Rational FX (right) sawards.com, or register their details on nomination forms in Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar, this week. Nominations open till July 31.
Gill chosen as a member of Home Affairs Select Committee Preet Kaur Gill, the first Sikh woman MP and newly elected MP for Birmingham Edgbaston has been chosen as a prestigious member of the Home Affairs Select Committee. She has also been elected as the Chair of the APPG for British Sikhs. The influential Home Affairs Select Committee consists of 11 MPs, from the three largest political parties and looks at the work of Home Office and its associated public bodies. The new Chair of the Committee is Yvette Cooper. Veteran Indian-origin Labour MP Rt Hon Keith Vaz was the chair of the
I N A S S O C I AT I O N W I T H
Zlakha Ahmed (centre) with Major General Richard Stanford MBE, ARMY(left) and Dipti Mistry, Bharat Welfare Trust (right) sen field. Last year, the award was given away to Manjit Gill, CEO and Founder of women's charity, Binti. Last year's finalists included well-deserving figures like Joysy John, Chief Industry Officer, Ada, National College for Digital Skills; Manjit Wolstenholme, Chairman, Provident Financial Plc; and Rupal Kantaria, COO, Oliver Wyman. Achievement in Community Service is another of our top categories, where we give back to those who have perseveringly given to the society. Last year, the award was taken by Zlakha Ahmed, CEO and Founder of women's charity, Apna Haq. Nominees included, Prem Goyal OBE, CEO, Global Markets Consultants; Professor Meena Upadhyay OBE, Cardiff University; and Khalsa Aid, Humanitarian
Preet Kaur Gill
Select Committee for nine years. The committee chooses its own subjects of inquiry from issues the home office takes on. At the end of the inquiry, the Committee prouces a report on the findings and make recommendations to the Government.
The Government is meant to respond to each of the report's recommendations within 2 months of the publication. Gill reportedly said, "I find the subject matter in what they scrutinise really interesting and wideranging. I am particularly interested in child sex exploitation...There has been a big increase in hate crime in the UK often targeted at Sikhs who wear turbans and have beards. The government's hate crime action plan has been focused on the Abrahamic faith and has ignored Sikhs. I want to make sure the Government is doing enough to address this."
Uniformed and Civil Services For outstanding achievements in uniformed and civil services or contribution to the community through any of the above services. Entrepreneur of the Year Awarded to an entrepreneur with a proven track record of operating a successful business enterprise. Professional of the Year Professionals in the field of medicine, law, education, banking, finance and others, who have scaled the heights of their chosen profession. Achievement in Media, Arts and Culture Someone who has made a mark in media including print and broadcast media; cinema, art and culture.
Details required for filing the nomination Please email/post the below details on a separate sheet I Nominee's Name, Occupation I Nominee's Contact Details (Tel/ Email) I Award Category: (choose from the category above ) I Reason for nomination I Nominees Accomplishments /Awards/Recognitions I Personal background /CV/ Bio (Attach these documents if necessary) I Any other information you would like to include about the nominee I Your Name/ Contact details(Email/Phone) Make sure that you fill in this application form and send it on or before 31st July, 2017 by post, fax or email to Mr. L George, Tel: 020 7749 4013, Fax 020 7749 4081, Email: email@example.com. If you are sending it by post the address is Mr. L George, ABPL Group, Karma Yoga House, 12 Hoxton Market, London N1 6HW. Apply online
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Guru Purnima Celebrations at Neasden Temple
Saints offering respect to the deities to celebrate Guru Purnima
The guru holds an especially celebrated and revered role in Hinduism as not only a guide but a powerful spiritual medium between humans and God. Devotees celebrate the Hindu festival of Guru Purnima to pay tribute to their guru and to thank him for all his indispensable contributions in their lives. The festival of Guru Purnima was devoutly celebrated on Sunday 9 July 2017 at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Vinu Kotecha with Yog Vivek Swami Mandir, London. A short video was presented The special evening assembly began thereafter in which His Holiness with devotional prayers sung by sadhus Mahant Swami Maharaj shared extolling the greatness of a guru. his personal memories of his Sadhus addressed the congregation gurus. Sadhus concluded the and spoke about the importance of and evening by offering flower need for a guru in one’s life. They also petals to the murtis of Mahant explored the special relationship Swami Maharaj and Pramukh between a guru and an aspirant and elabSwami Maharaj in devotional orated upon the guidance that a guru homage. offers for one’s spiritual advancement.
Nitin Palan with Yog Vivek Swami
Vilas Dhanani with Kamu Palan
Fears grow as acid attacks Prestige of UK universities increase on London streets drives demand for online There has been a spate of 'acid' attacks across London with six people targeted in one night last week. Victims of the brutal crimes have spoken out about their experiences in a bid to raise awareness about the crimes, while Home Secretary Amber Rudd has called for harsh sentences. The UK government has promised new measures to tackle the issue, including urging courts to impose life sentences where appropriate, or seeking age checks for those buying corrosive substances. Minister Rudd said an overhaul of current guidelines would ensure those who used noxious liquids as a weapon felt “the full force of the law”. “I am clear that life sentences must not be reserved for acid attack survivors,” she wrote in the Sunday Times. Proposals to ensure acid and other corrosive substances can be classed as dangerous weapons are among the changes included in the shake-up. As concern increases over such attacks, the London Ambulance Service has taken the step
of issuing advice to people outlining what to do in the event that acid is thrown at them. Acid is corrosive and when it comes in contact with the skin can cause intense pain and life-long injury. After Dagenham, on July 4th, a heavily pregnant woman fell victim of acid thrown over her baby bump while her partner suffered injuries to his face in a horrific East London attack. The pregnant mother and man were rushed to hospital after being being sprayed with a corrosive substance in Bow, in the early hours. The couple were walking along Mile End Road when they were approached by a man and sprayed with acid. Prosecutor Kavitha Tharson said: “A substance was thrown in the complainant’s face that burned him instantly. “The girlfriend also had liquid thrown over her that caused her harm. The acid has gone on her tummy, I have no information as to the impact on the pregnancy. “I can only assume some impact has been made.”
Mustafa Ahmed, 19, of Stepney, East London, appeared at Thames Magistrates Court on Tuesday 18 July charged with one count of wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm and one count of attempted wounding with intent to do great bodily harm. Ahmed, who currently lives with his parents and is studying at college, spoke only to confirm his name, age and address. His defence counsel Larry Matthews reportedly told the court that his client “emphatically denies” any involvement in the offences. He said: “There’s no doubt that the attack was a horrible one and I am conscious of the fact that offences of this nature are a matter of public concern at the moment. “It is an extremely serious allegation and if convicted there would be an extremely lengthy sentence. “But he emphatically denies any involvement in this particular incident. “He did so when interviewed by police yesterday.” Ahmed was remanded in custody.
Research published from Aston University and Keypath Education, the global specialists in online education, has revealed the diverse international spread of students studying online degrees at UK universities. A rise in the number of UK universities offering online degrees over the past five years has also seen a change in the landscape as numbers from North America, Asia and Africa surge. Analysis of the latest data from the Higher Education Statistical Authority (HESA) reveals the extent of these increases. Since 2011 the numbers of American students studying at UK universities entirely via online degrees has increased by 26%, Canadian numbers have risen 41% and Australian and South African numbers have soared a staggering 125% and 135% respectively. Rajay Naik, Europe CEO at Keypath Education, told Asian Voice, “It’s clear we are experiencing a global boom in the number of students studying online
Research and Innovation said:“We want to see more innovative and flexible courses offered, catering to the differing work and life demands of the widest range of people. That is why partnerships such as the one between Aston University and Keypath Education to deliver online degrees are so Rajay Naik important. Aston degrees, and it is fantastic University was recently that so many are choosing awarded a gold rating in UK institutions for disour Teaching Excellence tance learning. But it is Framework, and it is great also clear that we are in a news that they are extendvery competitive race to ing their excellent offer to attract the world’s best more people through this and brightest students to venture. study with British “Reforms we are bringUniversities. With Brexit ing in through the Higher on the horizon, it is more Education and Research important than ever that Act will help more British institutions are providers offer high qualitaking the lead on innovaty degrees and introduce tion in order that more more flexible ways of learners can work, earn working so that more stuand learn.” dents can benefit from Jo Johnson MP, excellent teaching and go Minister of State for on to secure a fulfilling Universities, Science, graduate career.”
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Rani Singh, Special Assignments Editor
Man of the Future who Founded a Mega Million Innovative Company There are many prodigiously bright officials working for Indiaâ€™s Civil service, but one super-smart decided to leave a promising career there and start a Fin-Tech Real Estate company, RedGirraffe.com. Itâ€™s now worth millions. Meet Manoj Nair, Founder & CEO.
Background Manoj comes from an Army family background. He was born in Bangalore and bred in New Delhi. The bright spark holds a Bachelorâ€™s Degree in Electrical Engineering, is a gold medallist in Masters in Law, an Ex- Indian Civil servant and a high merit alumnus of both the London School of Economics and Harvard Business School.
About the Company RedGirraffe.com technologically integrates with all the leading banks in the country where it operates and facilitates tenants to pay their monthly rentals (to their landlords residing in India or globally) using credit cards. They do this at a low cost of 0.39% via a financial technology platform named RentPay. India is the first country where RentPay has l a u n c h e d . Banking integration in Europe and Africa is currently underway.
the gap between two mega sectors; Banking and Real Estate.
The Indian Civil Service The Indian Civil Service exams are some of the toughest on earth. There are 700,000-odd candidates applying every year. â€œI was 26 then and was reasonably successful, leading my energy venture. We were a team of 80. I knew the captive power plant business was getting into a competitive space. Around that time, a few friends were preparing for this prestigious exam. Meeting them exposed me to a wider possibility of learning.â€? Manoj had by then accelerated his
The Indian Civil Service gave Manoj insight into various businesses, related regulations, corporate functioning, legislative policymaking and matters related to international economics. But after seven years with government, he knew it was time to move on. He thus resigned before the President of India in February 2012.
and cooperate, rather than lock horns, with financial institutions. Tenants get cash redeemable reward points, a 45-50 day free credit period, retail brand discount offers initiated by banking partners, a dashboard to manage their rentals, month on month rental payment advice. Finally, with a better credit score, tenants can potentially avail of cheaper home loans (by over 1% in India, for instance). Landlords get bank-verified tenants, rental payment credit triggered by banks and with that, no more tenant-related hassle,â€? the articulate Manoj explains.
The massive initial consumer traction level tells a story.
Redgirraffe.com took four years of pre-launch work with seven different business model experimentations. â€œWe just kept failing endlessly. The technology had to be right. We were to manage big financial transactions, so the technology stack was critical. Then there was hiring the right talent, the technological integration with all the largest banks, global corporate relationship unlocking, coordination with regulatory bodies, legal, enterprise structuring, investors, etc.â€? No wonder Manoj turns to the book Abraham Lincoln by James M Mc.Pherson for inspiration.
How does RedGirraffe.com work? â€œTenants can now pay monthly rental to their landlords using their credit cards at 0.39% without having to share any credit card details with a third party website. Our patent pending platform facilitates this. We have launches planned for seven more product platforms; one every year hereon in. We partner up with few of the largest banks in every country where we launch
The Challenge? â€œWe needed early consumer adoption,â€? the brainbox says. â€œReaching out to panIndia customers would mean a massive cash burn on advertising. However, unbelievably, India underwent demonetization just about that time. With the governmentâ€™s massive drive to arrest cash transactions and lead India towards an era of transparency via digital payments, we found ourselves in just the â€˜right place at the right timeâ€™ digitizing the governmentâ€™s biggest concern; Real Estate-related cash transactions,â€? says Nair. â€œThe massive initial consumer traction level tells a story. Itâ€™s the word of mouth publicity thatâ€™s playing in our favour. That said, I hold a considered belief that we have barely got started,â€? says Manoj Nair.
Early influences Manoj Nair says, â€œThe growing up days were hard. We had limited resources so we were subconsciously trained in being clinically disciplined, organized and efficient. During the summer holidays, my friends and I would distribute newspapers in the armyhousing complex for cash. At Grade Ten, I tutored junior classes. I wanted to break the shackles of financial hardship.â€? Manoj variously became an Electrical Engineer, an Energy Entrepreneur, a Civil Servant in India, and a Managing Director at an Asset Management Firm in London. Now heâ€™s an Entrepreneur again; this time using cutting edge financial technology, bridging
Manoj Nair energy venture, and was looking for a much bigger challenge. â€œI was intrigued by this examination and the massive commitment required to ace it. I knew I was taking a big risk but guess I was ready to start all over again. My strategy was to take three synergic subjects instead of the conventional two. Mine were Masters level Anthropology, Psychology and Sociology. I ended up with an All India rank of 157 and was among the top rankers of the civil service interview in the year 2005.â€?
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Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Is Caste Legislation Political Vendetta?
No other cause, legislation has united British Indian community with sole exception of saving Hare Krishna temple, where CB and GS/AV took the lead, as this outdated caste legislation, brainchild of feudal Lords with vested interest. I wrote to 20 MPs at the time, those who replied, readily admitted that none have received a single complain based on Caste, will not support such legislation, yet all voted in favour, presumably under pressure from fiduciary leadership. I watched heated, fiddle-faddle discussion in HOC some years back. If my memory serves me right, Jo Swenson (LibDem) and Alok Sharma (Conservative) shared our views, eloquently opposing the bill. CB’s personal experience when attending weddings is also our own. Some 90% of marriages among Hindus are inter-caste; inter faith marriages, mainly but not solely, between Hindus, Jains, Sikhs and occasionally with indigenous British people where caste is, nor have ever been of any relevance. Even BBC, with all its resources could not find a single relevant, believable example in their programme which tried hard to support this legislation. Does anyone have to prove one’s caste before entering a temple? It is time our ill-informed politicians stop wasting valuable resources and concentrate on real issues like sexually exploiting children, epidemic of acid attacks that hug our TV screen on daily basis. But unless our fickle, gnarled community unite, we will always be paupers in political arena, tools in the hands of manipulative politicians, to be exploited at will. Bhupendra M. Gandhi By email
Living Cheek by Jowl
Four weeks on from the disaster at the 24 storey tower block, the Grenfell tower, in North Kensington, where a raging fire engulfed the whole building killing at least 80 people, many of the survivors who were lucky to escape, are still homeless and still need to be rehoused. Many are living in communal halls bundled together. This is happening in 2017 in a prosperous country like Britain. Why the authorities are taking so long to find appropriate accommadation for the homeless people? Children of people affected by the fire are walking the streets in a daze. A whole community is liviing in a limbo. They are at a very end of their tether only being held together by volunteers. This is happening in one of the richest boroughs in the country. Many people who have been injured will not risk going to hospital for treatment for fear that their details may be passed on to the authorities and that they might be deported. We understand that 80 people have died in the tragedy but the figure may be incorrect as people are afraid to come forward and be counted because of their unlawful status even though the Government have offered amnesty to everyone who comes forward. Therefore, until displaced people come forward and are offered proper accommodation, they will continue to live on ‘top of one another’ in an insecure and unsatisfactory situatiion. This must be taking its toll on innocent children. Dinesh Sheth Newbury Park, Ilford
Parent’s Day is celebrated on the fourth Sunday in July. The day is celebrated to honour both the parents — i.e. the father and the mother. This year, Parent’s Day will be celebrated on July 23. Parent’s Day is dedicated to parents all over the world and is an occasion to show appreciation for the commitment to strengthen the family bond and to create an atmosphere of happiness, love and understanding. It is the parents’ who frame their child’s/children’s personality according to their inherit strengths, talents and bequeath to them moral values and the spirit of living life wholly. Parent’s Day acknowledges the overpowering presence of parents in the lives of children. Parents are the most important people in our lives. They bring us into this beautiful world, care for us with love and care and provide us with education so that we may grow up into responsible and level headed human beings. If you feel grateful for having the best parents on earth and want to let them know your heartfelt feelings, then Parent’s Day is the perfect time for you to convey your emotions. Writing a poem is a fantastic way to express your feelings to them. Jubel D’Cruz, Mumbai, India
Water good idea
Don't forget to drink plenty of cold water these days as temperatures soar and threaten to inflict parched throats and dehydration on us, possibly leading to dizzy spells. I once forgot to take my own advice and had to grasp street railings to steady myself as I felt light-headed and wobbly. Rudy Otter By email
Brexit negotiations are not going along well so far. The win in the referendum for Brexit which came from the majority votes from NE of England and Wales, did not expect the complexity and complications involved in leaving the European Union. They thought it would be a straight in and out of the European Union. It would be the immediate end of immigration, Sovereignty will be restored, we will have full control of our borders. They did not take into consideration the adverse effect on the economy of UK, which they were prepared to suffer and make the country also to suffer, as long as they were independent of the European Union. Nothing else mattered. Theresa May had said on becoming Prime Minister ‘Brexit means Brexit’ and that no further discussion was required on this issue. That meant ’Hard Brexit’. Then she took a big gamble by calling a snap general election in the hope of getting a majority of 100 seats in the parliament, but that went horribly wrong. She ended up with a hung parliament. She shed a tear then went got the support of DUP to stay in power by paying them 1.5 billion pounds by shaking the hidden ‘magic money tree’ . It seems she has not learnt her lesson as she still pursuing a ‘hard Brexit’ policy which will back-fire again. Theresa May's Government is putting a successful Brexit at risk by failing to show "active and energetic" leadership, the head of the National Audit Office has warned. In an unprecedented intervention Sir Amyas Morse said Whitehall departments are being left to "struggle on their own" with the challenges of Brexit because of a failure of leadership and direction Theresa May and hard Brexiters do not want a ‘Norway’ and ‘Switzerland/ models nor the ‘Canadian’ model. The British negotiators will have to make compromises and show flexibility otherwise they will have to go and whistle. The model that will suit UK will be half in and half out. Then everyone will a winner. Baldev Sharma Harrow, Middlesex.
Make organ donation compulsory
‘Kasmiriat’ is still alive Every year during the holy month of Shravan, countless pilgrims come to Amarnath Shrine in Kashmir to worship the Shivling which is made of snow in a mountain cave. To reach there ther journey is full of hardship. On 10th July the bus in which the pilgrims were going to Amarnath were attacked by terrorists from three sides and they fired nearly 100 bullets at them. Six women and one man were killed and nineteen were injured. Abu Ismail is responsible for theis heinous act. Hats off to a Muslim man called Salim who at the risk of his own life drove the bus so fast and could readh Indian military base in time. The nineteen injured people were airlifted to Surat. Pakistan who encourages terrorism is responsible for this heartless act. The US strongly condemned this terror attack on pilgrims. The Chief Minister of Gujarat met Salim personally and praised his bravery and will honour him for his humanity. With blessings of Lord Shiv and our soldiers duty to protect pilgrims. The Yatra will go on. ‘Jai Hind’ Sudha Rasik Bhatt Glasgow
Attack on innocent yatris
Terrorists who attacked innocent yatris to Amarnath must be condemned. Such attacks are followed by usual sorrow, blame game and compensations. Yatris can forcefully motivate J and K government by stopping Amarnath yatra for at least 3 to 4 years. Living worshipper can be more valuable than a dead one. There is no reason to walk into jaws of death by terrorists’ bullets in name of any religion, faith and any God. There are 11 major jyotirlings within India where yatris can go without any army or security protection. Revenue going to J and K from 2,00,000 yatris can be diverted to states within India. It can also save expenses to deploy army and security personnel. At the same time we can flatter Bhagwan Shankar by paying more attention to 11 holy places. Matter of deterring terrorists is a triangular affair between state government, central government and yatris. Central government has posted 40,000 army personnel to protect pilgrims, and later combing area for suspected attackers. Yet there is no guarantee about pilgrims’ safety. J and K government earns revenue from 200,000 yatris yet is unable to deter and punish terrorists, which emboldens them towards next opportunity to attack. Ramesh Jhalla By email
Doklam Border Standoff
In view of extreme shortages of organs, with 6500 on waiting list and one being added evert ten minutes, government will soon carry out consultation, gauging HOC reaction on making organ donation compulsory, in line with Wales’s legislation. Wales has taken first step in making organ availability easier. Consent will be taken for granted unless one has opted out. This may sound attractive in principal but may be fraught with danger, as relatives may object and our fickle authority may have to relent especially when religious sensitivity is the prime factor. Better way forward is to make every one sign consent form when we register with GP with opt in and out option available, inhibition dealt-with, opting out should automatically disqualify them from receiving organs. This would be more effective morally, culturally and legally binding if implemented impartially, without fear or favour. It seems religious sensitivity does not affect our judgement when we are recipients, in dire need to save our lives! This is human nature, human greed and selfishness bordering insanity! It is in our hands to make organ availability plentiful, but as usual England is at the bottom of the league when it comes to taking bold, sensitive decisions, instead relying on the generosity and understanding of the people that is clearing not working, with 500 avoidable annual casualties due to extreme organ shortages, driving desperate patients into arms of criminals who buy and sell organs on black market. Kumudini Valambia By email
Recently the PLA (People’s liberation Army) has attempted a road construction on Doklam Plateau which is a disputed area between Bhutan and China but it is also along the border area of Bharat. Not only Bharat is obliged to protect the interest of Bhutan by a treaty obligation but it has its own security concern and hence the border standoff. If the road construction goes ahead as attempted, the PLA could have a strategic strangle hold on the narrow strip of land which links Assam and other North-eastern states with the rest of Bharat. The PLA in recent years has also created artificial islands with air strips etc. in the international waters of North China Sea at the annoyance of several countries including the USA. These military adventures and the New Silk Road as well as the OBOR in Europe and Asia and other projects in Africa are to show China’s desire to project itself as a super power in par with the USA. Let us hope that New Delhi and Thimphu deal the current issue with a firm determination to solve it diplomatically but at the same time be prepared to face the menace so that 1962 Nehru fiasco (created by Hindi Chini Bhai Bhai and Panchsheel delusion) does not occur again. Narsibhai Patel New Malden
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Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Legislation against caste discrimination
I am supporting the legislation against caste discrimination. There are two things which I have always focused on. One is discrimination in any form and the second is treatment of women. We all know that Hindu lobby is very strongly opposed one of the reasons they say is that there is no discrimination. I say to that in that case why are they worried. If the legislation comes in nothing will happen! Frankly having talked to Dalit groups there is discrimination and surely it is to be expected from Hindus which ever country they are in. I am old enough to remember 1947 most of us believed that with freedom we will get rid of our worst practices such as cast and dowry. This has not happened in fact in India it has got worse. I want to say something about Ms. Vyasâ€™ points. 1. The judge does not need to define caste he is only dealing with discrimination. 2. Caste is the most negative aspect of Hindu religion. 3. This should not be seen as an attack on the Indian community we should set out to prove that we do not discriminate. 4. Former chairman of Human Rights and Equality Commission produced two reports one on social aspect and one on legal aspect both came out with it being possible to bring casting to quality legislation. 5. We already have inter community friction.
6. Repetition of 2. 7. Reinforces 2 and 6. 8. Hindus do not treat people as equals by birth. 9. There is no two tier system since it will only affect those who discriminate. 10. This is to try and frighten people, it makes no sense whatsoever. It is for us to make sure that there is no class discrimination and we do create an equal society amongst the Hindus. We may not want caste to be entrenched in the law it is therefore for us to prove that it is not an issue. I would like to remind us how the White British felt when the first Race Relations act came in. They felt that the minorities were being given more rights than the white people. We know that was not the case. When I was a teacher I saw plenty of examples of lower caste boys being taunted and teased by the others. Can I also remind all of your readers about the events organised for girls and boys to meet each other they are only open to the same caste or subcaste? I hope all your readers know that the Sanskrit word for cast is VARNA which is the same word for colour. Finally the Hindu lobby is very strong and has used its strength to block this legislation. Bob Blackman MP of course is looking at his vote bank and he is a great supporter of Nitin Palan. Baroness Shreela Flather By email
Children 'exercise less as they get older' The number of children doing an hour of exercise a day falls by nearly 40% between the ages of five and 12. Figures suggest that by the final year of primary school, just 17% of pupils are doing the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity every day. A spokesman for Public Health England described the drop in activity levels as "concerning". More than a third of children in England are overweight by the time they leave primary school. A new survey from Public Health England and Disney looked at the effects of physical activity
New legislation allows â€œspareâ€? emergency adrenaline auto-injectors in schools
New legislation was passed in Westminster this week to allow schools in the UK to keep spare adrenaline auto-injectors (AAIs) for emergency use. AAIs deliver a potentially life-saving dose of adrenaline in the event of a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis). The legislation comes into effect from 1 October 2017. A working group, made up of representatives from the Anaphylaxis Campaign, Allergy UK, the British Society for Allergy & Clinical Immunology (BSACI), the British Paediatric Allergy Immunity and Infection Group (BPAIIG), and the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), has campaigned over the last two years for the Government to amend the Human Medicines Act to allow schools to buy AAIs from a pharmaceutical supplier, without prescription, for use in emergencies. The working group and their respective organisations have welcomed the new legislation, which allows school staff to
administer an emergency AAI to any child who has been assessed as being at risk of anaphylaxis. Their campaign gained a huge groundswell of support from parents and teachers: over 1600 parents/carers and 800 teachers completed a survey in
2015 to assess backing for the campaign: over 99% of parents and 96% of teachers supported the proposal. The survey formed a crucial part of the evidence presented to the Department of Health. A public consultation conducted by the Department of Health this year also found overwhelming support for a change in the law to allow schools to hold spare AAIs, without a prescription, for use in emergencies. A joint statement from the five organisations
says: â€œThe rise in food allergy among young people is posing a significant risk for schools who can be faced with a life-threatening situation requiring urgent action. One in five fatal food-allergic reactions in children happen at school. Schools can now purchase the firstline treatment for anaphylaxis, without a prescription. â€œWhile not compulsory, we hope many schools will take advantage of this change as part of their duty of care to those children who are at risk of anaphylaxis. This is likely to increase awareness and highlight the need for staff to be trained to recognise and treat anaphylaxis in school. The working group is now developing a website which will provide online resources to support school staff. â€œFor a parent of a child at risk from anaphylaxis, this will provide valuable reassurance that their child can receive prompt emergency treatment while on school premises. We are delighted that our campaign has delivered the result we hoped for.â€?
THE TLC BEAT JULY ACTIVITIES INCLUDE SUNDAY, 9TH , 10AM - 12PM Guru Purnima Join us for full moon prayers.
on children's emotional wellbeing More than 1,000 children aged five to 11 were questioned, with their parents acknowledging that being active made their children feel happier (79%), more confident (72%), and more sociable
(74%). But the survey also found that children's overall happiness declined with age, with 64% of fiveand six-year-olds saying they always felt happy, compared with just 48% of 11-year-olds.
Residents from Britainâ€™s Asian communities with hearing loss invited to join research panel and help shape charityâ€™s work Charity Action on Hearing Loss (formerly RNID) is inviting people from Britainâ€™s Asian communities who are deaf or have hearing loss or tinnitus to join the charityâ€™s research panel and help influence its work. Panellists will have regular opportunities to take part in the UKâ€™s largest hearing loss charityâ€™s research projects by completing short surveys as well as through one-to-one interviews and focus groups.
Evidence gathered through the research will inform Action on Hearing Lossâ€™s policy, services and campaigning work for a world where hearing loss doesnâ€™t limit or label people, tinnitus is silenced and where people value and look after their hearing. Action on Hearing Loss Director of Policy & Campaigns, Dr Roger Wicks, says: â€˜Weâ€™d be grateful if people from Britainâ€™s Asian communities would get involved in our panel, which we hope offers a great opportunity
to feed in their first-hand experience of hearing loss and highlight everyday issues that will help shape our future work, supporting people who are deaf or have hearing loss or tinnitus to live their lives to the full. For more information or to get involved in the research panel, simply complete a short questionnaire which can be found at https://www.actiononhearingloss.org.uk/res earchpanel or by emailing: email@example.com
MONDAY, 10TH â€“ 23RD, 10AM - 12PM Hindola Utsav Daily celebrations of the Hindola festival. MONDAY, 24TH, 10AM - 12PM Shravan Mahino Celebrate the auspicious month with daily darshan and Shiv pooja.
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Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
The deaths of seven Hindu pilgrims from Gujarat in Kashmir by jihadi terrorists sent shock waves across India. They were on their way to the famed Amarnath cave when their bus was ambushed. All the passengers might have been killed but for the presence of mind of the driver who pressed the accelerator pedal enabling the bus to speed away to safety. Questions were asked about the selevident breach of security, with no armed escort, which is mandatory for such journeys. And why was the bus on the road after darkness?
Gopal Gandhi for Vice President Gopal Krishna Gandhi has accepted the nomination of the Congress, CPI (M) and Trinamool Congress for the Vice President
Amazon to invest in India’s food retail
of India. Other opposition leaders are undecided (Hindu, Times of India, Telegraph July 10).
India-Israel UAV deal
Amarnath Yatris (pilgrims) following jihadi attack
Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba and her predecessor Omar Abdullah condemned the attack in the strongest terms. The Chief Minister went to the site to comfort the bereaved and the traumatized living. Muslim clergy of Darul Uloom Deoband described the outrage as barbaric. The Minister of State at the Centre, Jitendra Singh, denouncing the attack, said India would not be cowed, but KKashmir’s Hurriyat separatist leadership accused Minister Singh of indulging in ‘nationalist rhetoric’ and ‘ignoring ground realities’ and ‘degrading the resistance.’ (Hindu, Times of India, Telegraph July 11, 12, 13).
Converted Hindu jihadi arrested Sandip Sharma, Class VII school dropout from Meerut, went to Delhi in search of a job and was enticed by a jihadi link man, since arrested, and introduced to a jihadi handler, now absconding, who took him to Kashmir, where he joined the Laskar-e-Toiba, robbing, banks, bombing property and killing the innocent. He was caught hiding in a house, where three jihadis were killed in an encounter with a security unit. Sharma, who had changed his name to Adil, found hiding in one of the rooms, was arrested (Times of India July 12.)
Rahul Gandhi blames Modi Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the terrorist upsurge in Kashmir, saying that his policies ‘had created space for terrorists in Kashmir.’ He tweeted: ‘Modi’s policies have increased space for terrorists in Kashmir. Grave strategic blow for India.’ In his haste to defame, he slipped up: ‘for’ should have been ‘to’. (Times vof India July 13). Congress bears the cross of a man who remains unelectable, and so will his party be, unless and until it finds a way of
relieving him of his duties and putting him out to grass.
Three jihadis killed Three jihadis, meanwhile, were killed in an encounter with security forces in Budgam, Kashmir, after being trapped in a house. Their bodies were recovered from the debris together with weapons and ammunition and explosives (Hindu July 13).
India is to acquire 5000 unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) worth $3 billion. These are urgently required by all three services of the armed forces for border surveillance. The country’s Defence Research & Defence Organization (DRDO) are also designing UAVs but as their tasks vary, India will also be tendering for these machines on the international market (Hindu July 13).
Indian-Israeli CEOs Forum agreements
To address the critical shortages in defence, the government has vested the vice chief of the army with financial powers to procure critical spares and ammunition in specified sectors. ‘After the Uri (Kashmir) attack last year, there was a review, which found critical deficiencies in 46 types of ammunition and certain spares for 10 types of weapons platforms. There is no restriction on the amount,’ said a senior Army officer. There should be preparedness for a short intensive battle of 15 days. (Hindu July 13).
The meeting of the India-Israeli CEOs Forum meeting in Tel Aviv identified 12 strategic areas of cooperation and signed up to implementing them. These include radar, anti-ship missiles, air defence systems as well as UAVs. While major Indian companies such as the Kalyani Group, Mahindra Aerospace, Dynamatic Technologies and Elcom took the lead, smaller niche firms like Alpha Design Technologies Garware Wall Ropes were also in the loop. Israel’s Elbit Security Systems announced its intention to increase its stake in the joint venture with Alpha Design Technologies from 26 per cent to 49 per cent. Further collaborations deals are to be announced in the coming months (Hindu July 13)
CPI(M) for ending ties with Israel
Muslim presence in Bengal varsities low
The Politburo of the Communist Party of India has called on the Indian government to end its strategic relationship with Israel on the ground that this violated the traditional norms of India’s foreign policy, and that it served the ‘interests of Imperialism.’ India must return to its long established position of unqualified support to the Palestinian cause. As Palestine had multiple voices – the PLO and Hamas, for example – the obstacles to finding a reliable interlocutor are formidable. President Pranab Mukherjee was forced to cut short his visit to the Palestine Authority because hostile extremist demonstration turned violent. He made a hurried exit to Israel, where he was received cordially (Times of India July 7).
The Muslim presence in Bengal’s state and Central government universities and institutions were abysmally low, according to the sixth All India Survey of of Higher Education for 2015-16, prepared by the Ministry of Human Resource Development. The institutions mentioned in the survey included Presidency University, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur, the Indian Institute of IT Technology, Kalyani et al, and private institutions of higher education, the Muslim enrolment overall varied from zero to 3 per cent.
Army vice chief Empowered
population. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress would surely be better served if they allotted more financial resources for scholarships and stipends for deserving Muslim students instead of squandering scare resources on madrasas, imams and moulvis. (Hindu July 13).
Population disparity What is especially disturbing is that Muslims constitute 27-30 percent of West Bengal’s
Amazon has got government approval to invest in India’s foods retail sector. This means the e-commerce giant in constructing a fully fledged food business through its subsidiaries in the country. The approval also allows Amazon to launch its own private label category for the food business. Amazon will pose a serious challenge established players such BigBasket and Grofers, but cracking the food chain will require ingenuity, imagination, enterprise and patience (Mint July 11).
Ahmedabad World Heritage City Ahmedabad was dubbed a World Heritage City – a first for India at the 41 st session of Unesco’s World Heritage Committee meeting on July 8 in Krakow,
across several sectors to pass on the benefits of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) to consumers. The introduction of the GST had been smoother than government and business thought, said company Chairman R.C. Bhargarva. While he said that wos too early to comment on the GST effect on sales, he affirmed that Maruti Suzuki India’s June sales, the month prior to GST’retail sales were very high.’ (Mint July 11)
Sensex crosses 32,000-mark Benchmark stock market indices soared to a lifetime high as record low inflation and a sharp fall in the factory output spurred investor expectations of a Reserve Bank of India (RBI) rate cut. ‘A combination of slowing growth and low inflation has stoked expectations of a rate cut by the RBI next month,’ said Karthikraj Lakshmananan, Senior Fund Manager, Equities, at BNP Paribas Mutual Fund (Mint, Hindu, Telegraph July 14)
Argumentative Indian censored
This is the title of a documentary film made on eminent economist Amartya Sen by Suman Ghosh. All films in Walled city of Ahmedabad the country have to be vetted by the Board of Censors, and a noobjection certificate issued before the film can be released. The present board cut out words like ’ c o w ’ ‘Gujarat’, ‘Hindutva’ for reasons Poland. It received almost best known to themselves. These unanimous support from words appear almost daily in the countries across the globe for its print media and heard morning, syncretic Hindu-Islamic evening and night on television architecture that reflected the channels, so it beggars belief co-existence of multi-faith that they were cut. Why should a society of Hindu, Muslim and functioning democracy need an Jain communities (Times of officious cabal of bovine India July 10). moralizers to sit in judgment for the public good? (Telegraph July Maruti riding high 13). Maruti Suzuki has cut prices
Shastri takes over the reins
Virat Kohli with Ravi Shastri
Ravi Shastri has been selected by appointment committee to be the head coach to the Indian cricket team. A former captain himself with vast experience of international and domestic cricket in all formats, he is popular with the team and captain, Virat Kohli, who Shastri says has yet reach his peak.. This, he believes, will happen over the next few years. The present had the all-round talent to become the best ever in India’s annals. The last few months have been fraught with the controversial departure of the much respected Anil Kumble, one of India’s all-time greats. India’s performances, hereon, at home and abroad, will be subjected to close critical scrutiny (Hindu, Times of India July 13).
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Mosque targeted in suspected arson attack
A Day in the Life of a Dealmaker No, I do not mean the US President. The Government liked the idea of promoting what a Dealmaker does on a day by day basis. So I thought I would pick a day where all I was doing was not the day job of running a fund, but my Government role full on! Here it is (from before the Department of International Trade absorbed UKTI). 0300: Plane lands from Moscow. Am flying Aeroflot – I have put a self-imposed cost control to half travel trip costs in the spirit of austerity. 0400: Arrive hotel in Delhi. As I am technically diplomatic staff of the High Commission under the Vienna Convention we get reduced hotel rates which is good for all concerned! 0430: checkin, unpacked papers for the morning conference session. 0500: Early breakfast arrive. Clear any emails since was on flight – especially relating to any meetings or any important business or Government or press interview ones ie those that can’t wait. 0545: bed 0800: get up for conference 0900: Conference starts. Meet Lord Bilimoria and the British High Commissioner to India. Karan’s an old friend and is keynote for this TiE conference and the UK is the country sponsor. Full house so am pleased with my Government and TiE hat on. Discuss with our Head of Inward Investment the media coverage of UK and India economic environment 1000: Shekhar Kapoor comes and sits next to me. I’ve known Shekhar for about 10 years now and love his perspective given the great things his done – not least Elizabeth. Being around someone so creative is fascinating to learn from. We chat about what he’s up to, and one or two UK government things and TiE Conference in UK in Delhi. I wanted him last December, but sadly his uncle, Dev Anand, passed away – the day before I was meant to meet the great actor at the Commonwealth Memorial Gates. 1230: Continue meetings with more of the attendees. My role is as Dealmaker – so we are co-ordinating meetings with target companies, and press interviews through the High Commission. UK isn’t
really awake but the calls keep coming in and get forwarded to an assistant – if they don’t leave a message, they don’t get called back is my rule. I also tweet the event which is part and parcel of the campaign to leverage our UK government sponsorship of the event. All the major Indian VCs are sponsors too so it’s great having us here. 1330: Ready for the presentation I am chairing on setting up in the UK. Meet more companies, offer advice, meet my colleagues from the High Commission who are all out in force. Co-ordinate meeting calendars and press. 1500: Chair my session on investing in the UK, and operational issues. Full room – so delighted. Lots of great questions and also new companies to work on for UKTI and High Commission and me. So our investment in TiE should pay off handsomely. It’s also great having in the same room people who are in UK with those who want to be. The energy and knowledge in the room is great. The ‘Great’ branding is fab. 1630: My session over. Meet some of the spillover companies and discuss with them issues. 1700: Visit our UKTI stand and then head to my room 1730: I have one hour before needing to head back down for the 1900 evening session. Sleep. Yes, sleep. I’m not macho man. 1845: Get ready and head down for evening networking session. Head to our stand and meet a couple more of our High Commission staff including our Head of Economic Policy and the very personable Deputy Head of Trade and Investment – hilarious interaction. When you instantly get on with people it’s lovely as makes the time fly. 2000: Everything delayed so speaking to our UKTI staff, companies, and fielding UK emails and planning attack for tomorrow. 2030: We all have dinner, continue meeting interesting companies over dinner. Share economic insights with our High Commission persons. 2300: Head to room. Plan to gym then do some emails. Put head on pillow for just 10 minutes to motivate self…never wake up again this day!
Petrol station worker stole nearly £18,000 to pay off debts
A petrol station worker who stole nearly £18,000 to pay off debts has been spared jail. Sajid Patel pocketed thousands of pounds in cash at a time over two months from the BP filling station in Ardwick, after wracking up £3,500 in mortgage arrears and business debts. A Manchester Crown Court sentencing hearing heard Patel, who ran newsagents in Bury and Wigan town centres, had not informed his family or his new employers of the criminal proceedings. When bosses at Euro Garages saw the story in the M.E.N. last month after Patel appeared before magistrates, he resigned after being told he would otherwise be sacked.
Petrol worker Sajid Patel
Patel, 39, was supported by his brothers in court as he was given a 12 month prison sentence, suspended for two years. He must also complete 200 hours of unpaid work. Prosecuting, Philip Dobson told the court that Patel, of Belmont Road, Bolton, was employed as manager of
the station, in Chancellor Lane, and was in charge of finances. He said figures reported by Patel started to ‘trouble’ company bosses, and that money had gone missing. From December last year to February Patel had been helping himself to thousands of pounds of the station’s takings, a total of £17,665.49. Defending, Russell Davies said that it was ‘highly out of character’ for Patel, who has no previous convictions. Patel has an offer of work from another company, and Mr Davies said the firm is aware of his conviction for theft. And he has the support of his family, after previously keeping them in the dark about his offending.
A suspected arson attack at a mosque in Manchester is being investigated by police and the fire brigade. The Manchester Nasfat Islamic Centre on Droylsden Road suffered ‘significant’ damage after a fire late last Sunday night. Emergency services were called at around 11.40pm and around 30 firefighters worked to tackle the blaze, which is now being treated as suspicious. Images taken by witnesses show flames coming from the roof of the building, lighting up the sky and surrounding houses. A spokesman for the centre said there was no one inside at the time, and
that they received a call in the night to say ‘it was being attacked’. The exact cause of the fire is yet unknown but fire investigators were expected to start work on the scene on Monday. GMFRS confirmed: “We were called at 11.43pm to Droylsden Road in Newton Heath to reports of a fire. We sent
A suave teenager stole the show at his high school prom after his brother hired him a fleet of supercars worth half a million pounds and a producer to make a hip-hop-style video. Amir Kayani rented SIX luxury motors including a £350,000 Rolls-Royce - as a birthday present for 16-year-old brother Zain’s prom in Bolton last week. Proud of his younger brother’s hard work during his GCSE year, Amir said
he wanted to give Zain an extra special surprise. Amir, co-director of Asian wedding planners Shaadi Shine, contacted
The Manchester Nasfat Islamic Centre that suffered ‘significant’ damage after arson attack
five pumps to the scene and an investigation is now underway.” A spokesman for GMP added: “The fire is being treated as suspicious and a joint investigation has been launched by GMP and GMFRS.” In 2014, a minibus the centre uses to ferry young and elderly visitors to the mosque, was torched.
Teenager left friends astounded when he turned up to his prom like a celebrity
Zain Kayani arriving at his prom
his friend, Zain Rehan, who owns production company ZRehan Films, and arranged to help his brother produce the video.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Indian Jewish Association organises annual summer reception The Indian Jewish Association under leadership of Founding Trustee Mike Whine MBE organised their annual summer reception on Wednesday 12 July at The Office Group, in Central London. Speaking at the event the Indian High Commissioner of India to UK, HE YK Sinha reportedly said that “there is one fountainhead, one epicentre” of terrorism, adding that India-Israel cooperation on terror was an example for the international community. Though Sinha did not name any country but recalled events in India’s
neighbourhood to say that “there are those who believe in promoting terrorism as an instrument of state policy,” The Hindustan Times reported. Israel’s ambassador to the United Kingdom Mark Regev counted at least 10 commonalities between the India and Israel, and said that unlike Europe, there was no history of hatred towards the Jewish people in India. John Levy, co-chairman of the association, called Modi’s recent visit to Israel a “joyous encounter” and said the Indian and Israel diaspora
with “umbilical links” to their mother countries faced similar challenges in the United Kingdom. Lord Dolar Popat said Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Israel as the chief minister of Gujarat and introduced Israel’s technology in the area of agriculture and irrigation
Speakers at the Third International Yoga Day
Meditation was given the title Kala Yugandhara. Amarjeet Singh Bhamra, Secretariat of APPG explained its meaning as Universal Enlightened Master of All Arts and Sciences. Prof. Nader has presented five volumes of Scientific Research on the
in the state. CB Patel, Publisher/Editor of Asian Voice wrote a special column about 'Why Jews cannot be ignored' on page 8 of AV 15 July issue. The paper was widely distributed at the event, and the column was much appreciated.
Transcendental Meditation Programme to Virendra Sharma MP and Tom Brake MP, Vice Chair of APPG. He further explained the link between the four chapters of Yoga and the four lobes of human brain, and between the sutras in each chapter and the cortical folds in the
lobes. Ragasudha Vinjamuri has presented a powerful dance on Lord Shiva and his yogic attributes and aasanas, Vidhi Sodhi has presented Odissi dance and 25 children by Carolina Naess have presented yogic breathing. Tom Brake MP, Tanmanjit Singh Dhimsa MP, Paul Fox from British Wheel of Yoga, Kalwant Sahota from the WL Clinical Commissioning Group, Suki Kalirai from Skills Active, Dr Bernard Colaço, honorary Advisor on Yoga to the APPG on Indian Traditional Sciences have spoken on the occasion, while Professor Madan Thangavelu has rendered the vote of thanks.
Sangam President pays tribute to Patron Lord Bagri
L to R: Lord Bagri’s son Apurva, Lady Usha Bagri, Alka Apurva Bagri and family member
On July 5th 2017 a gathering of distinguished guests and members took place to pay a tribute to Sangam’s Patron the late Lord Bagri. Speaking at the event Sangam President Mrs Richa Karnani said: “Lord Bagri and Lady Bagri have been Sangam’s stalwarts since its inception in 1971. We have been very fortunate to have the guidance and support all these years
from a man as large hearted and clear of thoughts as Lord Bagri. “Despite his many other commitments he took an active interest in our projects. Whenever invited he would attend our programmes. On an Open Day held at Sangam a year ago. Lord and Lady Bagri were invited to come and see our progress. “During those days
Our Anandmela celebration will be featured on B4U (Virgin 816, Sky 781, Freeset 503) under the popular ‘talk of the town’ programme on Friday, 28th July 2017@ 18:30hrs and repeat on 29th July, Sat @1400hrs.
Community Ambassadors honoured
HE Y K Sinha, John Levy, Mark Regev and Mike Whine
Third International Yoga Day celebrated at Parliament House The House of Commons saw the celebration of the third International Yoga Day on 10 July, jointly organised by All Party Parliamentary Group for Indian Traditional Sciences and the High Commission of India. The event was hosted by Virendra Sharma MP, who is also the Chair of APPG. Chief Guest High Commissioner of India Y K Sinha acknowledged the work of the APPG on Indian Traditional Sciences and highlighted the recent International Yoga Day celebrations in Britain. Appreciating his role and contribution to the field of Yoga, Professor Tony Nader, leader of the worldwide Transcendental
Taraben Kothari, founder President of Sangam Associations pictured with AV/GS Publisher/Editor CB Patel
Lord Bagri was not keeping too well. We wished him to come but we did not want to jeopardise his health. Lord Bagri had made his decision to attend. “Lord Bagri could not walk unaided during that time. He came and went around all our stalls enquiring and asking questions, being photographed with His Worshipful the Mayor of Barnet and the Board of Sangam and finally saying ‘Sangam is doing a good job I’m proud of all of you’.” She continued: “Lord Bagri had earned a great respect here at Sangam. We knew he would listen to us about the problems we faced or projects we wanted
to implement. “Lord Bagri always asked us to put together a project report explaining where we needed funds, which had the beneficial effect of focusing our minds on how we would deliver the project if we received the financial support. With his faithful financial and moral support over the years, he demonstrated his deep commitment to our work of over 45 years.” She ended by saying: “Lord Bagri has left us with so many wonderful memories we will cherish them for ever. Those we love do not go away they walk beside us every day. Unseen, unheard but always present.”
Winner Nishall Garala, centre, with Michael Underwood & sponsor Pat Egan
Dhiren Katwa Winners of the British Citizen Awards (BCA) have been announced at a prestigious ceremony at Westminster, hosted by Lord Navnit Dholakia. Now in their sixth year, the BCA exist to recognise individuals who contribute to society by making life better for others. All awardees are selfless in their endeavour, all care enormously about their cause, all are humane and humble and are truly inspirational. Among the 31 medal recipients were Nishall Garala from Essex who has been working in his community since he was first elected on the local Youth Council at the age of 13, where he served for 6 years. Now 21, Nishall’s passion is to give a voice to young people in Harlow. The local press has described him an ‘Ambassador’ of the town due to is commitment to his local community. Also, Jagraj ‘Jag’ Poselay from Walsall, a selfless man, passionate about fundraising for local independent charities. He works 50-hour per week as a delivery driver, and also has three Autistic sons. Last year Jag helped a local teenager who suffers from Celebral Palsy to fulfil his dream of riding a bike. Jag raised £1,800 in one week, and together with other funds raised was able to provide the boy with a specially adapted bike. Andrew Barker from Oxfordshire was also honoured. Collecting his medal and returning to his table, his mother gave him a proud smile and a pat on his back as he choked back tears of joy. Andrew suffered a brain injury at birth and spent his early life in the Special Care Baby Unit. Despite his challenges, he has achieved incredible grades in his A-Levels, surpassing his teachers’ expectations. In his speech, Lord Dholakia said that the press, in particular newspapers were littered with negative stories day in day out and made a plea to the press to cover positive, real-life stories of individuals, such as recipients of the BCA medals in an attempt that such stories would inspire and motivate others to do the same. Held at Westminster on Thursday, a fortnight ago the glittering ceremony was divided in three parts; afternoon tea with medallists; then a Lap of Honour on board a BCA branded open roof bus for a tour of central London; finally, a certificate presentation at Church House. A moving speech was delivered by Lonnie Mayne, founder of Red Shoes Living, an inspirational speaker. The host was Michael Underwood, the charming ITV News presenter.
Tony Blair admits Corbyn could become PM Tony Blair has admitted he now believes Jeremy Corbyn could become PM - as he warned a shift to the 'hard left' after Brexit could smash the economy. The Labour former premier said he had been forced to re-evaluate his view that elections could only be won from the centre ground in the wake of the party's advance on June 8. But he raised fears that Mr Corbyn's 'unreconstructed' policies of hiking taxes as we leave
the EU would bring the country to its knees. The comments came as Mr Blair made his latest intervention into domestic politics, after urging politicians to fight to reverse the historic referendum vote.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Entrepreneur and philanthropist Rami Ranger celebrates his 70th Birthday with style
Dr Rami Ranger CBE celebrated his 70th birthday party in what was a celebration extravaganza. Over 800 elite guests attended his special day at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London where glitz and glamour were in abundance.
t was an evening of great inspiration. Rami’s children Reena, Amita and Sabina shared stories of their father and their upbringing and gave touching and heart-warming anectodes of the time they were growing up in the Ranger household and how they owe their success to the love, affection and direction of their father and mother. The story of Rami’s 70 years is a modern day fairy-tale. He started his life journey from a refugee camp in Patiala, India, having lost his ancestral home and his illustrious father, Shaheed Nanak Singh, (www.shaheednanaksingh.com) who opposed the partition of India and was assassinated by religious fanatics whilst he was trying to save the students of DAV School, Multan who came out in a procession against partition of India and got caught up in communal riots. The students were saved, though his father lost his life for the Hindu-Muslim unity of India.
countries. It has won an unprecedented five consecutive Queens Awards for Enterprise in International Trade. There is no other company in Britain with this accolade. Her Majesty the Queen awarded Rami an MBE in 2005 and
Welcome address by compere Reena Ranger
a CBE in 2016. Rami’s popularity, due to his work ethic drew praises from his customers from every corner of the world. Many of his customers made special journeys to be part of his special day and others sent video messages which were played on the night. People from all walks
Mr Gopichand Hinduja
Rami’s hard work opened the doors to the start of his success, from hard work at KFC to being the star store manager of the famous high street electrical store Dixons. He started his first business with just £2 capital from a shed in Hayes. His marketing and distribution company, Sun Mark, was started in 1995 and today is successfully doing business in 130
Lord Karan Bilimoria
of life came to pay tribute to him with community leaders, business stalwarts, members of both the Houses of Parliament , Secretaries of State and Ministers heaping praise for his work in enriching Britain on so many fronts. Special birthday greetings from the Prime Minister, Theresa May, and former Prime Minister, David Cameron, were conveyed by Mr Richard
Rami and Friends
Rami Ranger with his wife, daughters, son-in-laws, grandchildren and other family members
Harrington MP, Under–Secretary of State at the Department of Energy and Industry. The Rt. Hon. Sajid Javid MP, Secretary of State for the Department of Communities and Local Government, praised Rami for his successful journey as a pioneer in business, for promoting
The Rt Hon Sajid Javid MP, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government
UK business globally and for his significant contribution to the community as well as the many good causes Rami supports through various organisations. The Rt. Hon. David Gauke MP, Secretary of State for the Department of Work and Pensions, said he was proud to have Rami as a constituent and
Guests dancing all night
was grateful for the support that Rami has given over the years to the Conservative Party. Rami’s company Sun Mark has transformed Greenford where the head office is based and the local MP, Mr Steve Pound, gave testament to how Sun Mark has added jobs and prosperity to the constituency, the surrounding areas and the UK as a whole. Lord Paul, said he was proud of Rami’s great work and contribution to the UK and globally, and that he was eagerly awaiting Rami to be honoured with a long overdue Peerage. Lord Bilimoria, paid tribute to the hard work and commitment of Rami and the positive change Rami has brought to the UK and how he valued Rami friendship. Mr Gopichand Hinduja, one of the most successful businessmen in the world and the richest man in the UK, praised Rami’s hard work, dedication and tenacity and said that he looks forward to the continued success and achievements of Rami in the years to come. After all the very kind words of the special guests, Rami spoke
of his enduring journey and of how his mother had made many sacrifices to bring up him and his 7 siblings after the assassination of his father. He paid a tribute to the unstinting support and direction of his wife Renu to whom he owes his success, to his daughters Reena, Amita and Sabina of whom he is very proud, and to the support of his son-in-law, Sunny, the CEO of Sun Mark . Rami also gave a special thank you to his family, friends, staff, and to all the customers and suppliers, for the important role they have played in his journey. Entertainment was provided by the London Cabaret Club who danced and performed acrobatics and to the band Madhen who kept the guests dancing late into the night. The dinner and catering was prepared by Ragamama Ragasaan and music and production was provided by Ritzy Roadshow. It was a party most befitting Dr Rami Ranger CBE, a man who has worked hard his entire life and given back so much to the local community and across the world whilst making friends along the way and filling people’s hearts with admiration and respect.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
A R Rahman under fire Continued from page 1 The question is who is right? The correct answer is both. Posters on the streets, shops, social media said in plain English 'A R Rahman live 2017, celebrating his musical journey: yesterday, today and tomorrow.' However, on Facebook, Rahman himself posted in March and June: 'BTOS productions and I are pleased to announce Netru Indru Nalai on the 8th of July at the SSE Arena, Wembley.' Many who follow Rahman saw his post and bought the tickets, but many others were familiar with his Bollywood popularity only who went ahead to buy their ticket. There have been some tailor made posters here and there. Most saying 'yesterday, today, tomorrow' but there is no proof that some were not printed in Tamil, though Asian Voice has not seen one so far. Many audience saw the Tamil phrase for this first time at the venue, and were not aware about it before. It is still not clear if Rahman used the Tamil phrase in his post as a figure of speech as a Tamil himself or was it meant to be indicative of the nature of the show. One must not forget that he even gave his acceptance speech in Tamil at the Oscars. Rahman has had a long history of being a music composer in Tamil cinema before he gave music for Bollywood, but it was Jai Ho and Oscars that made him a household name. Frankly it wasn't one of his best compositions yet it found place in the world's heart. Such is the power of music. He is brilliant in his compositions, known to be very shy as a man, but what he lacked to portray at this event is a natural instinct of an entertainer, ie clarity and ability to feel the pulse of the audience. Second, Indian media largely reported there were 16 songs in Hindi and 12 were in Tamil. However as Asian Voice contacted both the Tamil and non Tamil audience who attended the show, most said more songs were in Tamil than Hindi, though quite a few people did say it was an equal balance. Some from the audience mentioned that the Hindi Songs that were performed at the concert were: Tu hi re, Choti si asha, Dil de re, Jiya re jiya, Agar tum saathis ho, Enna sona kyun, Mayya mayya, Sachin, Kun faya, Maula maula, Khwaja mere khwa-
ja, Oh hum dum suniyo re, Pataka khudi. Some of the Tamil songs played were: Chandraleka, Uppu karuvadu, Urvashi, Humma humma, Azagiye, Usilampatti, Athangara, Marame, Ballelkka, Kadhalikkum pengal, Sarattu vandiyil, Aathangara marame, Putham pudhu boomi and jai ho. Sujatha Menon told Asian Voice, “We had known it was a Tamil oriented show as Rahman himself announced it on
facebook and Twitter back in March. This was postponed from last November to early this year July. In March he did mention it was going to be a Tamil oriented concert with new singers added. I had brought tickets for November which was postponed to march nd refunded not due to language issue but as date was not
possible. However few sponsored ads and Rahman's facebook/twitter updates did give insight of how it's going to be. Problem was sponsors changed and thus the theme. However that wasn't properly communicated by sponsors to those who purchased tickets in November/March.” Bhavna Zodge told Asian Voice, “We bought the tickets from ticket master and the title was celebration of 25 years of music. It didn't specify 'netru indru nalai' nor 'yesterday today tomorrow', so we were not aware of it when when we bought the
tickets. Preeti Basra said, “I won complimentary tickets and only saw 'Netru Indru Nalai' at th0e venue. However as I have attended his previous concerts I was aware Tamil songs will be sung. At this show it was a 60/40 ratio of Tamil/Hindi songs. I was not unhappy but a little disappointed as some of my favourite Hindi hits were not sung. “The issue is about setting expectations for audience who paid for their tickets. Even if audience who do not read Tamil saw posters in Tamil they wouldnt have a clue what it says it can be taken as advertising in a different language. It would help if they are clear about it in plain English so people can understand and do not feel cheated and disappointed as then they could make an informed choice.” Nuzrath Fathima said, “I felt all Tamil songs were peppy numbers and literally I was dancing to them. As far as Hindi is concerned it was kind of soft songs and people quietly enjoyed. I could hear noises only for Tamil because it was fast beats. It was indeed a 60/40 mix of Tamil and Hindi songs respectively.” Sangeetha Mani told us, “The songs were 70% Tamil and 30% Hindi. I am a mix of Hindi speaking
mum and Tamil speaking dad myself. I enjoy both languages equally..and I don't believe the show was anyway unfair to anyone. In fact I believe the hard feelings among my fellow Hindi speaking friends arose due to lack of understanding on what they had signed in for...The title was clearly a Tamil one depicting his work in the music field and music actually has no language. Anyone who truly loves music would have enjoyed the show like I and many other hindi speaking friends of mine did.” Sonam Prasad told the newsweeklies, “I attended
the AR Rahman show along with my husband and frankly speaking music was awesome. But little disheartened with very few Hindi songs. Please note I am not complaining about the Tamil songs but very few famous Bollywood songs.” Padma Balasubramania said, “My husband and I were at the show. We are Tamilians. But enjoyed both Hindi & Tamil songs as they are the same scores. Yes. We knew it as a show in Tamil - Netru, Indru, Nalai. We didn't keep a count of Tamil and Hindu songs but its was more or less equal. As a Tamilian the controversy has left a bad taste in the mouth. A legend who won so many international awards cannot be confined to a particular language. Very disturbing to see the dispute blowing out of proportion both here and in India, right upto to Arnab's show and in the Facebook groups in London.” Charu Sood said, “The tickets or posters it had no mention of Tamil. If I would have known I would have never purchased tickets spending £180 and then arranged baby sister for kids. Wasted about £250 on a night.” Third it is about geography of a city. When Rahman performed for the first time in London, it was in the O2 arena in South London, and most of his audience were Tamil. Even the sponsors were of Tamil origin. Yet he performed only 3-4 songs in Tamil and most were Hindi. South London, East London are homes for London's Tamil community. Wembley is in the heart of the Indians settled from North and West of India, and it is quite obvious that most audience will be non Tamilians. But then again people travel miles to see and do their favourite things and London that way is well connected. The issue at this concert was not that of language supremacy or favouritism. As some of the comments above clearly mention: it was about making a conscious choice. While not everybody saw Rahman's tweets or facebook comments, tickets and posters did not mention what audience could expect from the show- and much was left to imagination. A common man will go with what they believe and hope. And with money involved, disappoints led to fiascos, and that blew
out of proportion. Even Rahman tweeted about it and at the IIFA in New York he said, “I love the way people have supported (me) for all these years. Without them, I am nothing. I am grateful to all of them...We try our best. We try to be honest," after being asked about all the
hate on social media. We are sure things would be different next time. A lesson has been learnt, things will be forgotten and forgiven, fans' hearts will be won back again. As Scarlett O'Hara famously said in the novel Gone with The Wind, “After all, tomorrow is another day.”
May's sacking ministers could get MPs' support
Theresa May will have the have the backing of Tory MPs if she sacked disloyal ministers for plotting and briefing, a senior backbencher has said. Charles Walker, vice chairman of the backbench 1922 Committee, reportedly told ministers to "stop chattering away". Earlier the PM told her cabinet to show "strength and unity" as she attempted to stem the leaks, the BBC reported. She also told Tory MPs to end the "backbiting" over disagreements within the party on Brexit and other issues. Speaking on BBC Radio 4's The World at One, Mr Walker said that aside from a few "outliers", the party was united behind Mrs May adding that those plotting were "not doing
themselves any favours at all". "I do not care about people's personal ambitions," he reportedly said. "If the prime minister has to start removing secretaries of state because they are not focusing on their job, they are focusing on their own personal ambitions, so be it. And she will have the support of the 1922 Committee." Mrs May's attempt to instil discipline follows a sustained outbreak of cabinet leaks and leadership gossip, the UK newspapers have reported. According to her spokesman, the PM told cabinet at its regular Tuesday meeting: "There's a need to show strength and unity as a country and that starts around the cabinet table."
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Finance Banking Insurance magazine launched at a summer reception in the House of Commons Rupanjana Dutta
The 17th edition of the Finance, Banking and Insurance (FBI) magazine was launched at the Churchill Hall, in the House of Commons on Thursday, 13th July. The room bustled with enthusiasm and energy as hundreds of professionals interacted with one another just before the formal launch of this special magazine.
he annual FBI magazine published by Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar covers a range of financial products and services. With Brexit worries looming large over Britain, this theme based magazine tackles some very important subjects, with articles contributed by experts from various
Sanjay Agrawal, Chief Executive, European Operations, Bank of Baroda, Dhimant Trivedi, former CE, European Operations, BoB, Chief Guest Rt Hon Michael Ellis MP, Publisher/Editor CB Patel and Rt Hon Keith Vaz, MP
Dhimant Trivedi, former Chief Executive, European Operations, BoB
Rakesh Shah, MD, Kingly Capital
areas of the financial world. The magazine has a unique distinction, being the only recognised finance and business publication tailored to meet the needs of the Asian community. Rt Hon Keith Vaz, MP, the longest serving Asian MP, co-hosted the launch along with CB Patel, Publisher/Editor of the Asian Voice newspaper. Rt Hon Michael Ellis,
Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons, was the Chief Guest and he applauded the contributions of Asian Voice to the community and its commitment to the diaspora's progress. “I know Asian Voice is 45 years old, and it's going strong. CB Patel is a pioneer, an international personality, and I know of many who have very fondly spoken of him not only in the Asian community but throughout the country. And I would like to thank him for his tireless work,” he said. Dhimant Trivedi, the former Chief Executive of European operations, Bank of Baroda (BoB), thanked Asian Voice for this opportunity and said that the publication was a
Rt Hon Michael Ellis presenting Forex Company of the Year award to Rational FX CEO and co-founder Paresh Davda
guiding force and an eminent example of community cohesion. He announced the opening of a local bank in the UK as part of their 'new innings'. The new bank which will be owned by the Indian authorities, will function as a UK registered local bank. Bank of Baroda has operated in the UK for the last 60 years as a subsidiary of their Indian operation and this step promises to be a great initiative towards the future of Indian banking industry and UK-India relationship. The bank at the moment has over 107 branches in 24 countries outside India. Britons, especially British Asians, have excelled in several areas of the financial world. In recognition of their unique
the Year’ category was presented to Managing Director Freddy David and Kishan Devani from HBFS. The compere for the evening was Rakesh Shah, Managing Director and Head of Trading Strategies, Kingly Capital. Photo courtesy: Raj D Bakrania, PrMediapix
Chief Guest Rt Hon Michael Ellis MP being garlanded by Rupanjana Dutta, Associate Editor, Asian Voice
services, a few select organisations were presented special awards during the evening . Rational FX, a company that was founded in 2005 by the now Deputy Mayor of London for business Rajesh Agrawal along
Rt Hon Michael Ellis presenting Mortgage Broker of the Year Award to Dinesh Shonchhatra, from Major Estates Financial Sevices and Major Estates Sales and Lettings
with the current CEO Paresh Davdra, was the recipient of the ‘Forex Company of the Year’ award. Davdra was present to receive the award. The next award was the 'Mortgage Broker of the Year Award', which was given to Dinesh Shonchhatra from Major Estates Financial Sevices and Major Estates Sales and Lettings. A third award for the ‘Financial Institution of
Paid subscribers of Asian Voice will receive a copy of the FBI magazine with their newspaper this week.
Rt Hon Michael Ellis presenting Financial Institution of the Year award to Freddy David, Managing Director and Kishan Devani from HBFS
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
550,000 to get calls from taxmen Airbus eyes Dholera, These people deposited cash during the demonetisation drive
In the second phase of Operation Clean Money, over 550,000 people who deposited cash during the demonetisation drive, will get a call from the income tax department, while another 100,000 people are on the radar of tax officials for not disclosing all their bank accounts. A senior Central Board of Direct Taxes official said, “Fresh set of data of suspicious transactions has come to us. We have begun sending out emails and SMSs to over 550,000 indi-
viduals whose tax profile was not consistent with the deposits made.” Income tax authorities rely on data analytics to identify high-risk clusters, shell companies and benami assets. The department also identified over 100,000 individuals who did not disclose all their bank accounts when questioned in the first phase of the drive. The IT department has identified 1792,000 people in the first phase of which 972,000 had submitted
online responses. It had uploaded details of information about these deposits on the e-filing window of the PAN-holder on its website. Cash deposits made of over Rs 200,000 during demonetisation have to be disclosed in income tax returns this year. Currently, the 650,000 people have to submit online explanations without having to visit income tax offices as yet. The IT will match this information with the
details to see if there is any misreporting. The government had also given people one last opportunity to come clean, allowing them to declare unaccounted cash under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, 2016. Those making a declaration had to pay a total tax and penalty of 50 per cent and deposit 25 per cent of amount disclosed in non-interest bearing deposit for four years. The total amount declared under the scheme was £500 million.
Diageo plans to recover dues from Mallya World's largest liquor company Diageo Plc is all set to hold back the remaining $35 million of the $75 million it had agreed to pay Vijay Mallya as part of a settlement. Sources in the know said the company will instead seek to recover dues from the absconding businessman. Maker of Johnnie Walker scotch and Smirnoff vodka, Diageo paid $40 million of the settlement that was reached last year after Mallya agreed to walk away from United Spirits. Remaining money was to be paid in two equal instalments over the next few years. The sources said, “The remaining $35 million will not be paid now. The decision to not honour the
deal signed with Mallya is also on account of charges of various financial misappropriations from USL and fund diversion by him.” When the company acquired control of USL in 2012, it issued a guarantee to Standard Chartered against Watson Ltd, a company affiliated with Mallya. The British liquor company will also claim Mallya's stake in the Force
India Formula One team that had been pledged as security for Watson. It now has the benefit of counterindemnities from Watson and Mallya in respect of its liabilities under the guarantee. The Indian unit of Diageo filed several complaints against Mallya after inquiries uncovered “improper transactions” worth £122.53 millione. USL said Mallya had diverted the funds to nearly half-a-dozen companies in which he had a direct or indirect interest, mostly located in tax havens. The move won't have any material impact on USL except that it might reduce some overheads such as legal costs in the future,
believes senior vice-president at Edelweiss Securities, Abneesh Roy. For Diageo, India now accounts for almost 40% of sales volume and 9% of net sales. India is the largest whisky market in the world, selling almost 200 million cases. However, there is a stark difference between volume and value with the average retail price per 750 ml in the rest of the world being more than five times that in India. Hence, Diageo has been driving premiumisation as the prestige and above segment is also where most of the spirits industry profit pool is - it is expected to contribute 70% of spirits industry profits by 2021.
Business Awards - Winners Announced
Top marks, yet again, to Ninder Johal for the authenticity of his annual Summer Business Ball & Awards. Held at Wolverhampton Racecourse on Friday a fortnight ago – on the eve of Ninder’s 27th wedding anniversary - the swanky round-table event attracted over 500 guests reflecting, in its broadest definition, the region’s diversity. Resplendent in their finest attire, ladies and gents, mingled, networked and enjoyed the threecourse sumptuous meal. Ninder, in his opening remarks, told guests: “We live in uncertain times, welcome to the new norm – chaos and disruption”, “And while others around us lose their heads we must prevail”. He explained: “I am continually astonished by the brilliance of the business community and the sheer resilience in times of adversity. They create wealth and employment in their community and bring a sense of confidence and self worth.” To put all this into context, a short but powerful film illustrating the ‘present’ was screened followed by a
Akaal TV; (Business ‘past’ stage Person of the Year) drama and a Paul Nichol; short speech (International & from Ninder Enterprise) Wing projecting the Wah Group; ‘future’. (Entrepreneur of the G u e s t s Year) Paul Lalli; included former (Businesswoman of Lord Lieutenant the Year) Angela of the West Mir; (Hospitality Midlands Paul Business) Mount Sabapathy, West Hotel); (Business of Midlands' High the Year) Salisbury Sherriff John Poultry). Hudson, Telford The evening was & Wrekin hosted by BBC Asian Council’s exNetwork presenter leader Cllr Tommy Sandhu. Kuldip Sahota Entertainment and the BBC’S included comedian former multi Masai Graham. The award-winning event also raised political correover £4,200 for spondent Anita Promise Dreams, Bhalla. The Cllr Reynolds, second from right, with keynote speaker colleagues from Wolverhampton City Council the chosen charity. Sponsors included – and recipient collected the trophy. Cllr RationalFX, Qatar Airways, of the Lifetime Reynolds, who also chairs Cobra Beer, Achievement Award - was the Finance SubWolverhampton University Roy Richardson, the octoCommittee of the Trent and HSBC. An after party genarian owner of Merry RFCC, said: “There is £3.7 was staged at the nearby Hill Shopping Centre, one billion of investment on Ramada Park Hall Hotel. of the biggest retail centres site or in the pipeline for Now in its second year, in Europe. Wolverhampton and the this event aims to recogThe 'Regeneration' council’s regeneration nise businesses in the award went to plans and close partnerBlack Country “once the Wolverhampton City ship working is truly workshop of the world” Council. Representing his reshaping the city.” and in neighbouring areas council Cllr Reynolds, Other winners includfor their extraordinary Cabinet Member for City ed: (Business Start-Up) contributions towards a Economy at New Electrical Supplies; healthier and prosperous Wolverhampton City (Community Excellence) economy. Council and colleagues,
Mundra for making Panther copters
Airbus Group has announced its intentions to shift its entire manufacturing of Panther military helicopters to India and is looking at Dholera and Mundra as potential destinations for setting up its manufacturing base. Company vice president, Industrial Development (Strategic partnerships and offsets) Ashish Saraf said, “We have proposed to shift our entire line of Panther helicopters manufacturing to India. Dholera is one of the potential destinations for us to set up our manufacturing facility. Mundra could also be one of them in Gujarat.” Other states under the French company's radar are Maharashtra, Telangana, and Andhra
Pradesh. Talking about Dholera to establish a production facility, Saraf said, “The main reason is its proximity to the ocean. There is a standard selection process and criteria based on which we will finalise a location.” Union minister of state for civil aviation Jayant Sinha was positive about the investment in DSIR too. He said, “Dholera is ideally situated as far as the major cities of Gujarat are concerned. Airbus is going to build up a manufacturing base in the region. I have been pushing Airbus to visit Dholera and explore how they can place some of their manufacturing facilities, particularly with regards to their defence manufacturing.”
China's GDP grows 6.9% in Q2, beats expectations The Chinese economy unexpectedly picked pace faster in the second quarter as industrial output grew and investment remained strong. The National Bureau of Statistics said the economy grew 6.9 per cent in the second quarter from a year earlier, the same rate as the first quarter. Analysts had said they expected the economy to expand 6.8 per cent in the April-June quarter, but were proven wrong as exports recovered and property construction boomed. “Overall, the economy continued to show steady progress in the first half... but international instability and uncertainties are still relatively large, and the domestic long-term buildup of structural imbalances remain,” NBS said in a
statement. The Chinese government is aiming for a growth of around 6.5 per cent in 2017, a little lower than last year's 6.7 per cent, their weakest pace in 26 years. China's factory output grew 7.6 per cent in June from a year earlier, while fixed-asset investment expanded 8.6 per cent in the first six months of the year. Retail sales rose 11 per cent in June from a year earlier, the fastest pace since December 2015 and beating analysts' expectations for a 10.6 per cent rise. Last week, data showed both China's exports and imports rose faster-thanexpected in June from a year earlier, which could offset weakness in other parts of economy in the second quarter.
The government of India is currently considering options to raise money from state airline Air India, going beyond Niti Aayog's recommendation of taking debt of over £3 billion. Sources said one of the many options is to go for a reverse bid that will pit the £3 billion debt against rights such as landing slots and other operating assets that are owned by the national airline, giving it a much-needed edge over its rivals. AI has almost £6 billion debt on its books, of which £2.2 billion is linked to its aircraft purchase programme. There also are loans of around £600 million to 700 million related to its operations, which will go with the airlines. Niti Aayog suggested that the
remaining amount could be taken over by the government to make the airline an attractive proposition for the new buyer. “There are ways to improve the returns for the government which will be considered but at the moment these are all options and the panel of ministers will chart the best course of action,” a source said. They said that writing off the amount will impose a burden on the exchequer as the government will have to take over the loans extended by banks, which have refused to restructure the loan as it is seen to be an unviable proposition. “Through a reverse bid, we can realise better value and also make the whole process more transparent.”
Indian govt weighs options on AI's £3 bn debt
REAL ESTATE VOICE
WINNING THE RACE AsianVoiceNews
We managed to exchange on a deal we were in a race on. I expected we would do so for a couple of reasons, one was we could take a commercial decision on some of the unknown variables and the other we had a very good lawyer on our team who was all over this deal.
Sow & Reap London Property Investment
A deal moves as fast as the slowest component, in this case it was the sellers lawyer, who was acting in a very sloppy manner even for a normal conveyancing, let alone a contract race. After a stiff word with the partner, the lawyer assigned to the case was switched, and we then started getting a reasonable level of service. In order to close the deal quickly we transferred the exchange amount to the sellers lawyers account, which was held to order, meaning they cannot do anything with it without
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
the permission of our lawyer.
an uncertain two if not three years.
The deal was a large lateral flat which consisted of 2,200 sq. ft. Originally arranged as three units, it was being sold as one physical flat but as three leases.
The block, in honesty, is not desirable according to me. However, the Arabs love it; and prices have always been rising here. It’s in very close vicinity to Marble Arch, and part of the block is on Edgware Road. This flat was located in the nicer part of the block, with access through a large communal garden and off the side road.
The price was £1.6m, which equates to £730 per sq. ft. To give this number some perspective, normal flats in this block have sold for £1,250 per sq. ft. We have sourced many over the years and know the block well. A new build in Wembley, not even in the best area, would be priced at £650 a sq. ft. In short, this was a very good deal. The aim will be to reconvert it back into three two bed, two bath flats; and hold as a long term rental. This flows with the market, as we are looking at
AGONY AGENT IS HERE TO HELP! Q: What is a Revenge Eviction? A: "Revenge Eviction", as it's known in the media, is when a landlord ends a tenancy via a Section 21 Notice after a tenant has complained to the landlord about a matter relating to the property. This part of the Deregulation Act, that came into force in October 2015, is not widely known or understood by all. A Section 21 Notice (S21 Notice) was imaginatively named after Section 21 of the Housing Act 1988,
which allows a landlord to regain possession of their property, but only at the end of an Assured Shorthold Tenancy or Fixed Term Tenancy agreement. Landlords are able to issue a Section 21 Notice without giving any reason for ending the tenancy agreement, and this is where some of the controversy has stemmed from. The new law centres around the fact that landlords will now be unable to issue a Section 21 Notice if their tenant has previously complained (in writing) about the condition of the rental prop-
BUY TO LET OPPORTUNITY
erty and the landlord has failed to deal with the complaint properly and within a reasonable time period. The term ‘Revenge Eviction’ or ‘Retaliatory Eviction’ has been created by the media, reporting of certain cases of landlords serving a S21 Notice after tenants had complained about the condition of the property. Tenants must be able to raise issues with their landlord or agent without the fear of losing their home and the few landlords who have undertak-
I asked the agent if he could approach the losing party, and ask them if they still want the deal at £200k above the deal price. I got a response back saying that was a cheeky thing to even ask, but that they would ask the party they were going to flip the deal to, to see if they would increase the price they would pay! There was enough money on this deal for it to be en such practice deserve to be punished, however, as with most cases the minority spoil it for the majority. Some agents and landlords in opposition to the changes say that tenants could exploit the new law by making claims in order to delay the eviction process, resulting in lengthy delays in regaining possession or high court costs. What are the changes in the law and how do they affect you? l When a tenant complains, in writing, to their landlord about the condition of their property, the
sold again, and the final buyer still would end up with a great deal on his hands. A property in W2, which our client has recently exchanged on for less than £700k, has been placed in tomorrow’s auction, for a guide price of £775k. We have added some value by pointing out a mansard could be landlord has 14 days to respond. l If the landlord responds and then carries out the work, there’s no impact to serve a S21 Notice in the future. l If the repairs are not carried out or the landlord fails to respond to the tenant’s written complaint within 14 days, the tenant then has the right to complain to their council. l The council then should decide whether it wants to issue the landlord with a relevant notice. l If the council does not issue a relevant notice, this does not affect the landlord’s right to issue a Section 21 Notice. l If the council does
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added to the property, at which point you would have an increase in the square footage from 700 to 1130; changing the flat from a two bedroom to a four bedroom. We are hoping for a higher resale price, but the market is a shaky one, and you need to ride the market sentiment. We will see what tomorrow brings! decide to issue a relevant notice, as well as having to carry out the repairs/improvements to the property, the landlord will not be able to serve a Section 21 Notice for 6 months from that date. The details set out above are a snapshot, and are in no way exhaustive. If you’re worried about the changes it is worth getting in contact with me to get more information. As long as you have not fallen into the trap of not keeping your property maintained well, then giving notice should not be an issue. Richard Bond Lettings Manager Sow & Reap
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Consultant Editor Financial Voice Alpesh Patel Dear Financial Voice Reader, Finance is so difficult. That is why so many companies choose brand ambassadors. And in a week when the advertising agency has been focussed on the roles of men and women in adverts, what about the roles of ethnic minorities? How come we don’t feature when you think of finance…except Howard for the Halifax I guess! (The dopey looking one). It is highly flattering and important therefore in finance to be a brand ambassador above Boris Becker as a recent article about me noted: “24Option has been busy in creating an ambassadorial team of some repute! Boris Becker was one of the first through the door, no doubt to capture the sizeable German market but in general European custom. Next came Conor MacGregor, a worldwide name in the fighting world and someone everyone has heard of in this age of social media. However these names may well have been own goals for the brand.” “24Option has been around a long time and have learnt from their mistakes. The latest brand ambassador is Alpesh Patel. Whilst this name may not be as well known as his Ambassador peers, Alpesh Patel is extremely well known in the trading world particularly within the City of London. This is a clever move by 24Option. In Alpesh Patel they have a proven heavy hitter in the world of online trading and this association provides real benefit to them as a professional outfit. “Clearly 24Option have been learning as they go with their ambassadorial roles, unfortunately for them the results of their decisions often play out in public however in Alpesh Patel they have someone they can rely on and who brings with him a trading pedigree others cannot.” I want our community to know from advertising visuals it is us who are everywhere, doing anything and everything, it is not just a male/female thing, but a British Indian representation thing too. It is not enough we are entrepreneurs and CEOs, we must be seen by millions to be such too through television, not just as presenters, but as ambassadors.
Counting of old notes still on: Urjit
Tata opens new centre in Warwick Dhiren Katwa Tata Technologies, the global engineering services company, has opened its new European Innovation & Development Centre (EIDC) in Warwick. The £20mn state-ofthe-art Centre was officially opened last Wednesday (Jul 12) with a ribbon-cutting ceremony led by Mr S Ramadorai, Chairman of Tata Technologies. Reading from his script, Mr Ramadorai said: “We are proud to have a world class facility to house UK’s best in class engineering talent and help global manufacturers design, validate and manufacture the products of the future.” The facility will hold up
Mr S Ramadorai cuts ribbon as Tata Technologies senior leadership team look on
to 600 – of the 8,500 employees worldwide staff and is expected to create more than 200 additional jobs for design engineers and programme managers. The prestigious and slick event featured a
drinks reception and an optional tour of the facility. Also, a live music-only performance led by table player Udit Pankhania. Warren Harris, CEO of Tata Technologies, an exemplar orator, told guests that the opening of
Inflation at new low, govt takes dig at RBI for not cutting rates Just minutes after the release of data showing retail inflation at a record low of 1.5 per cent in June, Chief Economic Adviser in the Finance Ministry, Arvind Subramanian issued a fresh salvo at the monetary policy committee (MPC) led by the Reserve Bank of India governor Urjit Patel. Subramanian said, the “paradigm shift” to low levels of price rise had been missed by everyone. “This low, heartening number is consistent with our analysis for some time now, and which will be fully elaborated in the forthcoming survey, of a paradigm shit in the inflationary process to low levels of inflation- a shift that I think has been missed by all, reflected in the large, one-sided, and systematic
inflation forecast errors that have been made.” The statement was seen as a criticism of the MPC's reading of inflationary signals. Data released by the Central Statistics Office showed retail inflation slowed to a record low of 1.5 per cent in June, below the reading of 2.2 per cent in May, mostly due to low food prices. At the same time, industrial output growth
slowed to 1.7 per cent in May, compared with 8 per cent a year ago. The MPC had assessed inflation to be much higher than the actual reading and used the analysis to keep rates unchanged. Along with the government's leading economist, several private sector economists said the MPC's reading of the price situation is faulty. Subramanian's fresh statement suggested a need to cut rates. “Clearly, this low number and what it implies about price pressures, as well as the latest IIP data just released, is something that, I am sure, all policymakers will reflect upon very carefully,” he said. He pointed out that such low levels of inflation were last seen in 1999 and in August 1978.
Bob Diamond secures backing for Atlas Mara stake sale Addressing Parliament's Finance Standing Committee, RBI governor Urjit Patel informed them that the old currency notes deposited during demonetisation is still being counted 24 into seven by 65 machines, six days a week. He told them that RBI was floating tenders to hire more machines. Congress leader Digvijay Singh responded by asking whether the RBI would be able to provide the final figure before May 2019, when the Lok Sabha elections will be held. While the RBI hasn't stated how much money has been collected so far, the last official number is somewhere near £150 billion. Patel was also asked about the effects of demonetisation, and
Committee chair Veerappa Moily inquired whether the annual RBI report will mention the total old currency deposited with banks and then handed over to the central bank. The committee also asked whether the RBI would be able to clearly state the apex bank's “profit-loss” after the move. Patel tabled a statement on monetary policy in response, showing GDP had marginally slowed in 2015-17 and was projected to be 7.3 per cent in 2017-18. The governor was not particularly forthcoming in responding to questions on monetary policy, often referring to documents or seeking time to get back with more information.
Co-founder of Atlas Mara, Bob Diamond welcomed the strong backing from investors to sell over a third of the African banking investment vehicle to Canada's Fairfax Financial. The deal, which will partly fund Atlas Mara's investment in a Nigerian bank, leaves existing investors in the London-listed vehicle facing painful dilution, including Janus Capital, Wellington Management, Guggenheim and Diamond himself. “This means we have secured a $200 million capital injection to invest in sub-Saharan Africa. I feel terrific. This is a very strong partner, which has resounding support from shareholders,” he said. His comments came only after over 90 per cent of investors voted in favour of the sale. Atlas Mara will use some of
the money to increase its holding in Union Bank of Nigeria, and plans to buy an indirect 13.4 per cent shareholding in UBN, taking its combined direct and indirect holdings in the Lagos-based bank to 44.5 per cent. “Investors are pretty excited. We are now able to get to the next stage of our Nigerian investment at a very low price.” Diamond said it was a “great time” to buy a midsized Nigerian bank even though the country had been hit by its worst economic slowdown since 1991 after the collapse in oil prices in mid-2014 sparked a fiscal crisis. “We are going to get in to one of Nigeria's best banks with the total stake having cost less than 50 per cent of book value.” He added that there were “green shoots” in Nigeria, citing a recent uptick in oil
production and an oversubscribed sovereign bond issue. “I think we will look back in a few years and say, 'Can you believe we were able to get a majority stake in a major Nigerian bank for anything less than book value, never mind a significant discount',” Diamond said. Atlas Mara, which has suffered an 80 per cent fall in its share price since its 2013 listing, plans to raise $100m through an offering of new shares, and a further $100m through the issuance of a mandatory convertible bond to Fairfax.Fairfax, which is run by Canadian investor Prem Watsa, will also have the right to secure a minimum of 30 per cent of the share offering, and will subscribe for any stock not taken up by existing shareholders.
the EIDC was “a coming of age for Tata technologies, showcasing our commitment and confidence in our UK operations for the long term.” The early evening showcase brought together Tata Te c h n o l o g i e s ’ international leadership including Rakesh M a k h i j a , Chairman of SKF, Board Member Falguni Nayer, representatives from local authorities, clients, community stakeholders and employees. Also present was Dr Ralph Speth, CEO, Jaguar Land Rover.
Liberty buys Tata’s pipe mills in UK Sanjeev Gupta's Liberty House is all set to acquire two British pipe mills owned by Tata Steel, the second deal to be reached by the company in Britain in a little over a week. Both the, 42 and 82 inch “longitudinal submerged arc welded” pipe mills, which produce heavy-duty steel for the energy, power and construction sectors in Britain and beyond, employ around 140 people. Liberty house said all the jobs would be saved and anticipated further recruitment in the future. “It is anticipated that a support package will help Liberty to stabilise and grow the business through upskilling the workforce and developing new products,” the company said. Liberty intends to use steel from plate mills in Scotland, acquired from Tata Steel earlier this year for the pipe mills, and that the Hartlepool and Scunthorpe mills, upgraded, could be together used to develop high-specification piping for oil and gas sector globally. Gupta said, “These mills can be a symbol of a new Britain, integrated with the world economy, exporting a world-class product globally once again. We aim to engage with all customers of the business locally and internationally to regain our market share.” His company has spent over £500 million in Britain since the start of 2017, as well as others across the world, including the US and Australia, as part of a strategy of acquiring struggling businesses with potential and integrating them into their end-to-end business.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Anti-Pak protests erupt in Sindh Hundreds of activists demand total independence for Sindh
KARACHI: Hundreds of activists of banned Sindhi organisation Jeay Sindh Muttahida Mahaz recently participated in a march in Hyderabad to demand the release of Sindhi political activists abducted and enforced disappeared by the Pakistani Army and its InterServices Intelligence (ISI) wing, and independence for the Sindh province. The rally that began from Sindh University (Old Campus) and ended at the District Press Club, Hyderabad, saw protestors carrying banners and placards that demanded total independence for Sindh. They urged the United Nations, the international community and human rights organisations to take immediate notice of what they called Pakistani occupation of the province, acts of fascism, state torture, atrocities, besides exploitation of the region's rich natural resources. They also questioned authorities over enforced disappearances and killings of Sindhi freedom activists. JSMM central coordination committee leader Asif Juno addressed the par-
DUBAI: Crisis-hit nation Qatar has accused its Gulf neighbours of breaking international law by hacking its websites and planting fake information that prompted the ongoing diplomatic situation in the region. A recent report suggested that US officials discovered that ministers from the United Arab Emirates held a meeting on May 23 to discuss plans to hack Qatar government news and social media sites and post provocative quotes from emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani. The quotes included borderline derogatory remarks by Sheikh Tamim about US President Donald Trump, support for Iran as an “Islamic power” and praise for Hamas. These quotes were shortly followed by a
ticipants even with the Pakistan Rangers and contingents of police trying to stop the march with a heavy baton charge and firing of teargas shells. Juno said, “Sindh has remained an independent country for ages. It was an independent country since the year 1843 when British imperialism invaded and subjugated it and gifted it to its loyal Punjabi mercenaries in 1947 to keep a hold of Indian Ocean waters. The independence movement of Sindh has been struggling for the restoration of its historic nationally independent identity. Today, Sindh is under theocratic fascist Punjabi occupation in Pakistan in the name of Islam.”
He added, “The Sindhi independence movement is fighting its case on diplomatic and international fronts effectively and the sacrifices, painstaking struggle and voice is gaining international acknowledgement for the historic, ideological and practical perspectives of the 'Sindh Case' in front of the international community and the entire civilised world today. And, that's why Pakistani theocratic, fascist military establishment, army, its savage agency ISI and Rangers (paramilitary forces) have imposed a ban on the JSMM and are practising ruthless barbaric torture against Sindhi political activists by abducting, enforced disappearing, torturing and killing them.” Juno condemned state torture of protestors, as he called it, describing it as “an open violation of the right to freedom of expression and speech.” “Sindhi political activists are being hunted, persecuted, abducted, enforced disappeared and killed, and even if someone raises his or her voice to appeal to the
international community to take action against these Pakistani atrocities, he or she too is tortured, arrested, abducted, enforced disappearances and then killed.” “The state is rapidly depoliticising Sindhi society, banning secular political organisations, right to freedom of speech and expression; imprisoning, abducting, torturing, enforced disappearing and killing the secular political activists and sponsoring a wide web of theocratic extremist Jihadi madrassas (Islamic Religious Schools) throughout Sindh to radicalise secular Sindhi society. Thousands of JSMM and JSQM activists have been abducted and enforced disappeared by the Pakistan Rangers, Army and the ISI.” Juno said, “Pakistan is the epicentre of Islamic terrorism, a nuclear proliferator, a graveyard of UN's Charter of Human Rights, theocratic fascism, murderer of historic nations chained in its forced federation, and if the world wants attainment of global peace and annihilation of Islamic terrorism it must have to stop Pakistan and disintegrate it.”
mass boycott from four Gulf states- the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Bahrain. Addressing the issue, the Qatar information office said, “The information published in the Washington Post... revealed the involvement of the United Arab Emirates and senior Emirati officials in the hacking of Qatar News Agency.” It added, “(The report) unequivocally proves that this hacking crime took place.” UAE was quick to rubbish the allegations, saying the report was “purely wrong”. In the UK to deliver a lecture on the causes of the Gulf crisis, UAE Foreign Minister Anwar Gargash said, “The Washington Post story is not true. It is purely wrong. You will see in the next few days the story will die.” He denied
claims that the hack could have possibly prompted the crisis. “This issue has been festering since 2014,” he said. Gargash also hinted that the Gulf Cooperation Council may collapse. “The GCC is in crisis and I don't think it serves our purpose to say 'let's take Qatar out'. What we really do want is we either reach an agreement and Qatar's behaviour changes, or Qatar makes its own bed and they can move on and we can move with a new relationship. But we cannot have a member who is undermining us and supporting extremism. You cannot be part of a regional organisation dedicated to strengthening mutual security and furthering mutual interest, and at the same time undermine that security. You cannot be both
our friend, and a friend of alQaida.” Meanwhile, Qatar seems to be fairly coping with the boycott. Five weeks into the Gulf crisis, the richest country in the world per capita has maintained a respectful calm and just might have enough time to come up with a solution before it starts to sink. French energy giant, Total has confirmed that it would take up a contract to develop the Qatari al-Shaheen offshore oilfield with Qatar petroleum. The contract, set for 25 years, includes 300,000 barrels-per-day. Qatar's Finance Minister Ali Shareef al-Emadi said, “This blockade will do very well for us in the medium to long term. We are a peninsula but now we are operating like an island.”
Qatar accuses Gulf neighbour of planting fake news
Trump's approval ratings sink, prez says `inaccurate' WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump went on one of his classic rants on Twitter after a new poll showed his popularity dropping amid doubts of Russian meddling and growing frustrations over a halfhearted healthcare legislation. The billionaire finds him in the middle of yet another controversy, this time, triggered by his son Donald Trump Jr, who met with a Russian attorney last year following a promise of damaging information on Democratic rival Hillary
Clinton. The Washington Post ABC News poll showed a significant decline in Trump's approval ratings, down from 42 per cent in April to 36 per cent in July with his administration set to complete six months. Trump's disapproval rating has jumped five points to 58 per cent, as per the survey conducted on 1,000 adults. “The ABCWashington Post Poll, even though 40% is not bad at this time, was just about the most inaccurate poll around election time!” Trump tweeted. Almost half
of the respondents, 48 per cent, said they “disapprove strongly” of Trump's performance, and 48 per cent said they saw American global leadership weakening since Trump entered the White House, while 27 per cent said it was stronger. About the mess created by his eldest son, Trump has been desperately holding on to threads, bashing the media all along. “With all of its phoney unnamed sources & highly slanted & even fraudulent reporting, #Fake News is DISTORTING
DEMOCRACY in our country!” the President wrote on Twitter. He also sent on his private lawyers, Jay Sekulow on five different talk shows to argue the lack of legality about his son's meeting with the Russian attorney. “What took place at the meeting... is not a violation of any law, statute or code,” Sekulow said. “Well, I wonder why the Secret Service, if this was nefarious, allowed these people in. The President had Secret Service protection at that point, and that raised a question with me.”
Indian-American couple killed in US plane crash
HOUSTON: An Indian-origin doctor couple was killed when their private plane crashed in the US state of Ohio. Umamaheswara Kalapatapu, 63, and his wife Sitha-Gita Kalapatapu, 61, both of Logansport, were killed in the crash. The Piper Archer PA-28 was piloted by Umamaheswara. There was no word on what caused the crash. The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating. The Kalapatapus were psychiatrists and owned Raj Clinics, with offices in Logansport, Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, Lafayette and Kokomo.
Indian in US pleads guilty to financing Qaida terrorist
WASHINGTON: An Indian American has pleaded guilty to supporting terrorism by providing material support to al-Qaida's “key leader” Anwar Al-Awlaki for “violent jihad” against American soldiers and a judge, authorities have said. Yahya Farooq Mohammad, 39, an Indian who married an American citizen, faces over 27 years in prison and deportation if convicted, the justice department said. Mohammad and three other defendants, his brother Ibrahim Mohammad, and two US citizens were indicted by a federal grand jury in September 2015.
Indian student found dead in Bangladesh
DHAKA: An Indian student has been found dead while another was found injured in a flat in Bangladesh's Chittagong's city. The deceased was identified as Ateef Sheikh, 25, a final year MBBS student of the University of Science and Technology Chittagong. Another Indian student, identified as Winson Singh, 23, was also found hanging from a ceiling fan. Both of them belonged to India's Manipur state. According to local reports, Singh allegedly stabbed Sheikh to death during an altercation before trying to hang himself. Singh was, however, rescued by other flatmates and both of them were taken to Chittagong Medical College Hospital..
Christian man arrested on blasphemy charges
LAHORE: A Christian man has been arrested on the charges of blasphemy in Pakistan's Punjab province. Soon after arresting the suspect the police shifted him to an undisclosed location on the fear that the religious groups may attack the police station. The incident took place at Kharian Gujrat, some 200 km from Lahore, the capital of Punjab. Nadeem Ahmed, owner of an electric shop, filed a complaint with the police that one of his friends told him that a Christian sweeper had allegedly uttered remarks against the Prophet. The complainant himself had not heard the Christian uttering against Prophet. Still his complaint has been taken seriously by Pakistan Police.
Iran cancer researcher sent home from Boston
BOSTON: An Iranian cancer researcher who headed to a prominent Boston hospital to work as a scholar was sent back to his country, a day after US immigration officials detained him and his family, media said. Mohsen Dehnavi, his wife and three children were put on a return flight after being detained at Logan International Airport, the Boston Globe said. The detentions were apparently unrelated to President Trump's executive order temporarily banning travellers from six majority-Muslim countries, according to Boston Children's Hospital and immigration law specialists, who said Dehnavi had a valid entry visa. “Based on what we know, it's not travel-ban related. It's probably something much more stupid than that,” said Susan Church, chair of the New England chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Defiant Sharif vows not to quit Pak PM rubbishes opposition demand for his resignation over Panamagate ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif rubbished the opposition's demand for his resignation, following an investigation report that found him at fault for concealing his family's offshore assets. During a federal cabinet meeting, Sharif said, “I have been elected by the people of Pakistan and will never resign on anyone's call conspiring against democracy. The Pakistan Muslim League-N got more votes than the combined votes of all parties demanding his resignation. I will not let the country's development become a target of conspiracies.” A lot of pressure has been building up ever since the submission of the Joint Investigation Team's report in the Supreme Court. The report observed major discrepancies in the finances of the Sharif family and their
declared sources of income. Calling the documents “speculative” and “a concoction of allegations”, Sharif said, “Despite reservations, I accepted the JIT's formation without any hesitation and presented myself and family before it. We cooperated with it to uphold law and constitution.” He claimed that the language used in the report was “biased” and based on “malafide intentions”. Sharif even challenged his opponents to prove corruption of
a single penny against his family since he became Punjab's chief minister in 1985. “My family didn't earn anything from politics but did lost a lot.” The six-member JIT, in its report to the SC, said the PM and his children's lifestyle were way beyond their known sources of income, and recommended filing of a new corruption case against them. The investigation team has asked the court to reopen 15 old cases, including five cases decided by the Lahore high court, eight investigations and two inquiries against the PM. Three of these 15 cases were filed during the 1994 and 2011 tenures of the Pakistan Peoples Party and 12 were prepared during the regime of Pervez Musharraf, who had toppled Sharif's government in 1999 in a military coup. The JIT recommended
that the NAB be directed to complete its probe into the London properties, and also recommended that the SC resume investigations against the PM for recruiting 42 employees in the FIA in the 90s, the forced acquisition of land in Raiwind, the construction of a road to Raiwind, receiving funds for the Sharif Trust, assets beyond known sources of income and illegal plot allotments. The JIT report said Sharif failed to satisfactorily answer most of the questions put to him during his appearance before investigators on June 15. “He was generally evasive and seemed preoccupied during the interview. Major part of his statement was based on hearsay,” the report said. It added that the PM remained non-committal, speculative and at times non-cooperative while recording his statement.
After travelling to China, the 27 year old flew to Jordan, where he was arrested, and told his parents he wanted to go to Mecca, adding that he did not intend to return home. During interrogation, Patel said he had been released from a prison in Jordan, and that he wanted to commit jihad and shaheed. The court affidavit filed by Pembroke said he praised last year's terrorist attack in Nice, France, the shooting at a night-club in Orlando, Florida, and the 2015 terrorist attack at a night-club in Paris. He said he was “so elated” by the success of the terrorist attacks that he “went to the gym and worked out hard.” The affidavit said he praised late al Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki. He told undercover FBI agents that he went to Jordan in part to find
“like-minded Muslims” and wanted to do something “bigger, better, and more purposeful, including dying in the cause of Allah.” After returning to the US, Patel began applying for jobs, including the US Army and Air Force. In conversations with special agents, he said he supported Nidal Hassan, a former US Army Major who fatally shot 13 soldiers in 2009. In an interview with an Army recruiter in December, last year, Patel denied travelling outside the US except for a single trip to India in 201112. He denied travelling anywhere in the last seven years, and told the same lie to an Air Force recruiter later. Pembroke, in his affidavit, said the FBI has discovered new information revealing that Patel had attempted to de-escalate his support for the IS in recent months.
Indian American Hindu IS supporter arrested
CALIFORNIA: An IndianAmerican Hindu supporter of terrorist outfit, the Islamic State was arrested earlier this month on charges of lying to the US Army and Air Force, on a job application. Shivam Patel of Williamsburg is charged with one count of “making materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent statements or misrepresentations in a matter within the jurisdiction of the executive branch of the Government of the United States,” court documents said. FBI Special Agent Thomas Pembroke, in an affidavit filed on June 30 in the District Court of Eastern Virginia, stated that Patel had long sympathised with the Islamic State and with al Qaeda. His parents were interviewed last year, and it was learned that he had been “obsessed with Islam” and had converted
couple of years ago. Investigation revealed Patel's personal browser history contained multiple searches for Islamic State-related material, IS-related propaganda videos, and information on how to join the group. He had also searched for ways to evade a polygraph examination, lie detector test, and had downloaded issues of IS' Dabiq magazine.
An iceberg the size of Delaware just broke off Antarctica PENNSYLVANIA: A massive block of ice the size of Delaware broke off from Antarctica and is now freely floating in the Weddell Sea. Weighing around 1 trillion tons, the iceberg is the largest on record and poses no immediate threat to sea levels. However, scientists said the break is just a preview of the effects of global warming on marine ice shelves. They said the the break may have altered the profile of the continent’s western peninsula for decades to come. Researchers at Project Midas, a team from Swansea University and Aberystwyth University in Britain, confirmed the break using data from NASA satellites. They had been monitoring a rift in an ice shell called Larsen C for years before it began to grow rapidly in January, increasing in length to
approximately 120 miles. Lead investigator Adrian Luckman of Swansea University said, “We have been anticipating this event for months, and have been surprised how long it took for the rift to break through the final few kilometres of ice. It may remain in one piece but is more likely to break into fragments. Some of the ice may remain in the area for decades, while parts of the iceberg may drift north into
warmer waters.” The main argument now is whether the break away was induced due to manmade climate change. Glaciologist at Project Midas, Martin O' Leary said icebergs break away naturally in a process known as calving. “We're not aware of any link of human-induced climate change” in this case he said. The team said that even if that is the case, the event works as a proxy to help them
study how ice shelves fracture. The calving in question has reduced Larsen C by over 12 per cent. Many worry on its potential effect on the remainder of the shelf, among Antarctica's largest. Named for the man who discovered it in 1893, the Norwegian explorer Carl Anton Larsen, the Larsen Ice Shelf is actually a series of many floating chunks of ice. Larsen C, the largest, was first photographed in the 1960s. Even then, the fateful crack was already visible, according to NASA. Ice shelves form as ice sheets large accumulations of snow on top of a land mass - flow downhill to the ocean. The shelves naturally shed weight in the form of icebergs - the process called calving - or through melting on the bottom.
Japan's `men-only' island shuts doors to tourists
TOKYO: Visitors will not be allowed to set foot on a men-only Unesco World Heritage island in Japan from next year, an official said. The tiny landmass of Okinoshima, where women are banned and male visitors must bathe naked in the sea before visiting its shrine, was declared a Unesco World Heritage site last week. Limited numbers are currently permitted to land on the island in the Sea of Japan (East Sea) - this year it was 200 - for a yearly festival that lasts just two hours, but they must adhere to strict rules. But Munakata Taisha, the shrine which owns Okinoshima, has decided to ban travel for anyone apart from priests from next year to protect the island from being damaged.
70 killed in rain-related incidents in Pakistan
ISLAMABAD: At least 70 people have been killed in rain related incidents in various parts of Pakistan. Pakistan's National Disaster Management Authority said that 90 people were also injured since June 26 when rains started lashing the country. The disaster management authority said it has transported food, tents and other relief supplies to affected areas. Flash flooding triggered by the rains damaged a bridge in the eastern Punjab province and landslides disrupted normal traffic in the north. This week's rains flooded some streets in an upscale area of Islamabad. However, most rivers in Pakistan are still flowing at normal levels.
Properties of Imran, Qadri to be seized
ISLAMABAD: An anti-terrorism court ordered temporary seizures of properties of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaaf chief Imran Khan and firebrand cleric Tahirul Qadri, over their failure to appear before it in a criminal case. It also directed the police to produce the two before it at the next hearing. Khan and Qadri were accused of instigating clashes, including an attack on the state-run Pakistan Television's office in 2014. In February 2016, the judge had issued final warrants against the two.
Massive wildfires sweep across Canadian province
OTTAWA: Massive wildfires fuelled by strong winds have been sweeping over Canada's British Columbia province for more than a week, forcing thousands of people to evacuate. As of Sunday, a total of 178 wildfires were reported to be actively blazing in British Columbia, according to the Canadian Wildland Fire Information System. The Canadian government has declared a state of emergency to address the severity of the situation that began on July 7. Currently 3,000 firefighters, including 415 sent in from surrounding provinces, and 203 aircraft are involved in battling the fires, while this operation has cost Canadian authorities more than $80 million, said Canadian Minister of Forests John Rustad.
Tehran imprisons American on espionage charge
TEHRAN: A Chinese-American accused of “infiltration” in Iran has been sentenced to 10 years in prison, media reported said. The man was identified as Xiyue Wang, a 37-year-old researcher at Princeton University. Wang, who was born in Beijing, was arrested on August 8, 2016 while trying to leave the country. Mizanonline, news agency of the judiciary, said he was part of “an infiltration project” to gather “highly confidential articles” for US and UK institutions, including Princeton, US state department, Harvard's Kennedy School and the British Institute for Persian Studies. “Before his arrest, he was able to digitally archive 4,500 pages of the country's documents,” said Mizanonline. The US state department called for “the immediate release of all US citizens unjustly detained in Iran.”
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
US imposes stiff conditions for defence funding to Pak
WASHINGTON: US House of Representatives has voted for three legislative amendments to impose tougher conditions for reimbursement of defence funding to Pakistan, on the condition that Islamabad shows satisfactory progress in its fight against terrorism. All three legislative amendments to the $651 billion National Defence Authorisation Act (NDAA) 2018 were adopted by a voice vote by the lower house of the Congress. Passed by the House, the bill requires the Secretary of Defence to certify, prior to making any reimbursement to Pakistan, that Islamabad is maintaining security along the ground lines of communication through the country, taking demonstrable steps to support counter-terrorism operations, disrupting crossborder attacks, and countering the threat of improvised explosive devices. Conditions
are related to Pakistan's support to terrorists and terror outfits, about which several top US officials and lawmakers have repeatedly expressed concern about in the past. The bill also specifies that of the total amount of reimbursement and support authorised for Pak during the period beginning on October 1, this year and ending on December 31, next year, $400 million would not be eligible for a national security waiver unless the secretary of defence certifies that Pak continues to conduct military operations against the Haqqani Network in North Waziristan. The Defence Secretary also needs to certify that Pak is demonstrating commitment to preventing the Haqqani network from using North Waziristan as a safe haven, and is actively coordinating with the government of
Afghanistan to restrict the movement of militants, including the Haqqani Network. Two of the amendments were moved by Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, and one by Ted Poe, a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee and chairman of subcommittee on terrorism, non-proliferation & trade. One of Poe's amendment proposes to withhold reimbursement funding for Pak unless the Defence Secretary can certify that the country is not providing military, financial, or logistical support to any individuals designated by the US as a terrorist operating in Pak or Afghanistan. “Making excess military equipment available to federal, state, and law enforcement agencies along our southern border will provide muchneeded support and reinforcements to the men and women who are our first line of defence. It is well-known that Pakistan is a Benedict Arnold ally who supports multiple terrorist organisations, including groups that target Americans working to stabilise Afghanistan. But current limitations on military reimbursement funding to Pakistan only apply to one terrorist group: the Haqqani network,” Poe
Karnataka wants to have a 'state flag'
The Congress-led Karnataka government has constituted a nine-member committee to design a “State” flag and submit a report on giving it legal sanctity. Just months ahead of assembly elections in 2018, the move marks a departure from the stand Karnataka had taken in 2012, and comes amid rising sentiments against the NDA's reported move to impose Hindi in the state. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah defended the plan, denying it was made with an eye on elections. “Is there any provision in the Constitution which prohibits a state from having
its own flag? Have you come across any such provision in the Constitution? Did the BJP come across such a provision?” he asked. Karnataka Minister for Kannada and Culture Umashri said, “This is not a political gimmick. This is respecting the sentiments of the people. Why is it wrong? Is making a committee to study this wrong? Doesn't the government have the right?” The demand for a separate flag is not new with Karnataka. Five years ago, when the BJP was in power, it had opposed a separate flag, rejecting a suggestion that the red and yellow flag
used in the state for cultural and other events be declared the state's official flag. It had told the state High Court that a state flag would be against the unity and integrity of the nation. A Bengaluru-based lawyer, Alok Prasana Kumar said, “There is no provision either in the Constitution or in the Flag Code that prohibits a state from having a separate official flag. If such a code is planned then it will need the assent of the President. This is because the government will then have to consider the relation of this flag with the national flag.” The June 6 government order has nominated principal secretary of the Kannada and culture department as chairperson of the committee, which will include secretaries of law, home, parliamentary affairs and personnel and administrative reforms departments as members.
All those acquainted with Indian history, know August 17 is a crucial day in the history of the Partition of India. It was on this day when the destiny of millions were sealed. Today, 70 years later, a small museum in
Amritsar has decided to mark the traumatic event that led to 12 million people crossing the border. Co-founder and CEO Mallika Ahluwalia said, “It's a people's museum. It's not about assigning blame, but to acknowl-
edge the experience of those who lived through it.” In one of that rooms, an installation of a well serves as a reminder of the violence, rape, and honour killings endured by women.
Bill on India-US defence cooperation
WASHINGTON: US House of Representatives has passed a $621.5 billion defence policy bill that proposes to advance defence cooperation with India, in an amendment moved by IndianAmerican Congressman Ami Bera. NDAA-2018 was passed by the House 344-81. The India-related amendment passed by the House requires the Defence Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of State, to develop a strategy for advancing defence cooperation between the United States and India. An elated Bera said, “The United States is the world's oldest democracy and India is the world's largest democracy. It is vitally important to develop a strategy that advances defence cooperation between our two nations. I am grateful for this amendment passed and look forward to the Defence Department's strategy that addresses critical issues like common security challenges, the role of
partners and allies, and areas of collaboration in science and technology. Cooperation between US and India enhances our own defence and our ability to meet the evolving security challenges of the 21st century.” After the passage of the National Defence Authorisation Act, the Secretary of Defence and Secretary of State have 180 days to develop a strategy for advancing defence cooperation between the two countries. As passed, NDAA2018 asks the State Department and the Pentagon to develop a strategy that addresses common security challenges, the role of American partners and allies in India-US defence relationship, and role of the defence technology and trade initiative. It also asks them to address how to advance the communications interoperability and security memorandum of agreement and the basic exchange and cooperation agreement for geospatial cooperation.
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Partition Musuem to open in Amritsar
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Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Probe into VIP treatment for Sasikala in jail Sasikala has been accused of bribing jail officials for undue favours
NEW DELHI: Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has ordered a high-level probe into allegations made by Deputy Inspector General (Prisons) that AIADMK general secretary VK Sasikala is being given special treatment inside Bengaluru jail. He tweeted, “We have taken serious cognizance of the allegation of irregularities in Bengaluru Central Prison & ordered a high level inquiry.” Sasikala has been accused of bribing jail officials for undue favours. DIG (Prisons) D Roopa alleged that senior jail staff members allow a host of illegal activities at Central Prison, Parappana Agrahara, including provision of special treatment to former AIADMK general secretary VK Sasikala. In a letter written to director general and inspector general (DG&IG) of police RK Dutta and DG (Prisons) Sathyanarayana Rao, Roopa said Sasikala is allowed to use a separate cooking room, while stamp paper scam
saying, “There is no VIP treatment being given to any prisoners. If the DIG finds anything, she must first bring it to my notice and not go to media. I am yet to receive any such letter.” Meanwhile, Siddaramaiah said, “Request all to await the outcome of this inquiry. Strict action will be taken against any person found guilty of wrongdoing.”
convict, Abdul Karim Telgi, is provided undertrials as aides. Roopa said, “These violations of prison rules have come to your notice, and there are talks of £200,000 having been given as bribe for the same. I request you to act immediately and punish people breaking the rules.” Rao, however, denied all the claims,
Kerala native's bid to join IS foiled second time
NEW DELHI: Delhi police have arrested a Kerala native for allegedly trying to join the Islamic State in Syria. Shahjahan Velluva Kandy, 32, is currently being interrogated in Delhi about his activities in Syria. A police officer said, “Kandy had gone to Turkey last year in June with his wife, but was deported from there in February after trying to cross over to Syria for joining ISIS. His wife was also deported.” Kandy was arrested from the airport with the fake documents on July 1. Intelligence sources said he was an activist of the Muslim outfit Popular Front of India. This was allegedly his second attempt to join the IS. Deputy Commissioner (special cell) PS Kushwah said, “A case
under Sections 420 (cheating), 468 (forgery), and 419 (impersonation) under the Passport Act has been registered against him. Further investigations are on.” He was let go by Delhi police the last time, after he pleaded mercy and sought release saying his wife was in an advanced stage of pregnancy. “Subsequently, the NIA issued a notice for him to appear before the agency for recording his statements. However, the notice could not be served to Kandy as he was missing from the house. We have been trying to locate him since then,” the officer said. There are no criminal cases against him, and the police have arrested a passport agent who helped him procure fake travel papers.
Exempted farmers need not repay loans: Amarinder CHANDIGARH: In an early notification to implement the recent cabinet decision, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said the farmers whose loans have been waived stand immediately exempt from repayment of their debts. In a recently-concluded budget session of the assembly announced total waiver of entire crop loans up to Rs 200,000 for small and marginal farmers, and a flat Rs 200,000 relief for all other marginal farmers, irrespective of their loan amount. Singh had said the move would benefit a total of 1025,000 farmers, including 875,000 farmers who hold land up to 5 acres. In a meeting of various farmers' organisations held lately, the CM said his government would continue to pressure the Centre for implementation of the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission, on which all the farmers union had expressed consensus as the “only real long-term solution” to the problems of the peasants.” Singh told them that the process of loan waiver, as
Roopa transferred After Roopa made the allegations, the state government transferred her out of the Prisons Department to the post of DIG, Commissioner for Traffic and Road Safety, Bengaluru. This comes on a day senior retired bureaucrat Vinay Kumar is expected to begin a probe into the alleged irregularities in the prison. The government issued notices to Roopa for violating the service rules and going public over allegations against other senior officials. Incidentally, she took charge as DIG (Prisons) only on June 21.
Chargesheet filed in Dinakaran bribery case NEW DELHI: A chargesheet has been filed in a special court against an alleged middleman arrested in the Election Commission bribery case involving AIADMK (Amma) faction leader TTV Dinakaran. It, however, does not include the leader in the final report. Authorities said a supplementary charge sheet would be filed against Dinakaran and other accused after they complete the probe against him. A senior police official associated with the case said the chargesheet was filed against Suresh Chandrasekhar, who was arrested on April 16 and has been bailed twice by the sessions court, and then again by the Delhi High Court. Charges against him include forgery of valuable security, forgery for purpose of cheating, using forged document as genuine and possessing a forged document and intending to use it as genuine. If convicted, the
offences carry a maximum sentence of life imprisonment. Chandrasekhar was arrested for allegedly taking money from Dinakaran to bribe Election Commission officials to get the AIADMK's original two leaves symbol for Sasikala's faction. As per Delhi Police Crime Branch, they had seized a fake identity card of a Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament with security features from Chandrasekhar. Pound 130,000 in cash was also allegedly recovered from him at the time of the raid at a hotel.
Drug racket: Former minister, son named in chargesheet
announced in the budget, would start within two months, adding that his government was committed to waiving the loans of the farmers, even though the state's debt burden had turned out to be “much higher than anticipated”. Singh also reaffirmed the state's inability to share river water with other states, claiming that if Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal comes up, then a whopping 10,000 acres of southern part of the state would “go dry”. He advocated continuous dialogue to resolve the festering issue and said Punjab's water would not be allowed to be diverted to other states and a committee under the Finance Minister was working continuously to solve the problem.
MOHALI: Former Punjab minister Sarwan Singh Phillaur and his son Damanvir Singh are among 12 others named in an ED chargesheet filed in the Jagdish Bhola drug racket and money laundering case in a CBI court in Mohali. The 211-page chargesheet was filed by the Enforcement Directorate's special public prosecutor Jagjit Singh Sarao and also names former chief parliamentary secretary Avinash Chander. Sarao said the ED had earlier filed a chargesheet against the prime accused, Bhola, and four supplementary chargesheets against others involved in the case. He claimed that the accused had purchased properties from the proceeds of the drug racket. “The ED had in 2013, regis-
tered an FIR against Bhola and others in this connection,” he said. The chargesheet states that Chander took Rs 4500,000 from Chunni Lal Gabba, another accused named in a supplementary chargesheet filed in the case. Bhola, a former DSP in Punjab police and an Arjuna awardee, was booked in January 2014, as co-accused, a day after he accused then state revenue minister, Bikram Singh Majithia of patronising the drug mafia. Both Phillaur and Chander were minister and CPS, respectively, in the previous SAD-BJP government. They were dropped and denied tickets for the 2017 Assembly elections after their names cropped up in the infamous drug and money laundering racket.
Rahul forms 171-member Karnataka Cong committee
NEW DELHI: Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi has formed a 171-member committee for its state unit, in his preparations for the 2018 Karnataka Assembly. The new Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) announced last week, has 17 vice presidents, 55 general secretaries and 96 secretaries, besides a treasurer. Gandhi had earlier appointed G Parmeshwar as the president of the KPCC and, KC Venugopal as the AICC general secretary in-charge. Gandhi has also approved a proposal to appoint Kameshwar Baitha as Chairman of the SC department of Jharkhand PCC.
TN to set up Amma e-villages
CHENNAI: Tamil Nadu government is all set to establish 'e-villages' named after former chief minister Jayalalithaa. CM E Palaniswami said, “One village will be selected from every district which will be made Amma E-village and services like Wi-Fi hotspot and smart street lighting will be provided.” Making announcements in the state assembly, he said Tele Education and Tele Medicine Services will also be provided to the selected village under this scheme. The entire cost will be borne by the Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV (TACTV) under its CSR initiative.
Woman arrested with 1.29 kg gold
HYDERABAD: Officials of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence seized 1.29 kg of gold from a lady passenger travelling from Abu Dhabi to the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport here. Investigations revealed that the lady was carrying a mixer along with three jars. Thorough examination showed that the motor of the equipment was tampered with and gold was hidden inside the core of the motor. Gold in molten form was also poured into the mould of the motor core and shielded with a metal sheet.
Selfie love turns fatal for 2 girls
GURDASPUR: The urge to click a selfie cost two girls their lives as they fell from a bridge and drowned in a canal. A college student and her friend were taking photos of themselves, when one of them who was precariously sitting on the edge of Sathiali bridge. Witnesses claimed Nisha, 18, held on to her friend Lovepreet Kaur Masih for help, eventually dragging her too into the gushing waters of the canal. The authorities were immediately informed and a rescue operation was launched, but the girls were not traced.
AAP's Phoolka quits as Punjab Opposition leader
AMRITSAR: CHANDIGARH: Senior lawyer and AAP legislator HS Phoolka resigned as the Leader of Opposition in Punjab Assembly to continue his fight for the 1984 anti-Sikh riots victims. He submitted his resignation to the Speaker, as per directions from the Delhi Bar Council disallowing him from contesting cases of riot victims as he held an “office of profit” and enjoyed the rank and perks of a state Cabinet Minister. Phoolka said he had asked party chief Arvind Kejriwal to choose a substitute. “I will continue to fight for the rights of the riot victims which I have been doing for so many years,” he said.
Punjab bandh call evokes poor response
LUDHIANA: Hindu outfits' call for a 'Punjab Bandh' to protest against terror attack on Amarnath Yatra received lukewarm response across the state. Anticipating trouble, heavy police force was deployed across Ludhiana. Members of Hindu outfits brandished swords forcibly tried to close shops in Chaura Bazaar, Clock Tower, Girjaghar Chowk and Division Number 3 area. However, shopkeepers resisted. Police immediately swung into action and the troublemakers were detained. Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police Rattan Singh Brar claimed that the day remained peaceful with no violence being reported across the city, and that 25 people were detained under preventative measures.
Asian Voice | 22th July 2017
Dr. Hari Desai
Agony of Bahawalpur which financed Pakistan The Nawab says, his grandfather was approached by Sardar Patel to accede to India: Jinnahâ€™s commitments being flouted by the rulers of Islamabad Bahawalpur as a State came into existence in 1727 and Amir Sadiq Muhammad Khan I (1727-1746) was agreed upon as its first ruler, who belonged to the Abbasi Caliphs of Bagdad
he present Nawab of Bahawalpur, Salahud-Din Ahmed Abbasi, refused to meet the then President of Pakistan, Asif Ali Zardari, for two days in Bahawalpur despite repeated requests and the PPP supremo had to return empty-handed in 2013. This was despite the fact that President Zardari had increased many perks and privileges for Nawab Abbasi and his son. The Nawab boasted of getting himself and his nominees elected to the Punjab Assembly and the National Assembly of Pakistan as well. Pakistan Muslim League-Quaidâ€™s leaders Chaudhary Pervez Elahi and Chaudhary Shujaat Hussain also approached Nawab Abbasi, but did not end up striking a deal with him. Nawab Abbasi has occupied a National Assembly seat four times: 1998 as an independent candidate, in 1990 on the Islamic Jamhoori Ittehadâ€™s ticket and in 1993 and 1997 through the Pakistan Muslim LeagueNawaz. The Nawab has been popular in all the three districts of the Bahawalpur d i v i s i o n - B a h a w a l p u r, Bahawalnagar and Rahim Yar Khan, which encompass 15 National Assembly and 31 Punjab Assembly constituencies. Yet, when he did not get the royal treatment from PML-N and was offered only one of the National Assembly seats, while also not backing him for a Senate seat, he was furious. He had his own party, Bahawalpur National Awami Party(BNAP), formed and ended up having tie-up with Imaran Khanâ€™s Pakistan Tehreek-eInsaf(PTI).He did not contest the National Assembly election, but the candidates he supported lost badly to Mian Nawaz Sharifâ€™s candidates in his Bahawalpur State! The Nawab is keen on his former State being restored as Bahawalpur Province. Even the Punjab Assembly and the National Assembly have given green signals but the popular demand is not met. In his first ever TV interview to Pakistanâ€™s News-one channel on 8 March 2013, the Nawab of the first ever Princely State to join Mohammad Ali Jinnahâ€™s Pakistan was quite dis-
turbed and furious as well. He pose the question repeatedly: â€œKahan Gaye Khwab Mohammad Ali Jinnahke?â€?(Where are the dreams of Jinnah evaporated?). His grandfather, Nawab Sir Sadiq Muhammad Khan V , had the option of joining hands with India since person none other than Sardar Patel had asked him to be with the Indian Union, but as most of his subjects were Muslims, he refused the golden offer. No, he does not repent for and does not expect a separatist movement for Bahawalpur as â€œ it was Bahawalpur which made Pakistanâ€?. Pakistan was almost bankrupt at the time of her birth and tones of money and gold apart from bank guaranty was extended by the then Nawab of Bahawalpur. His State was â€œthe largest and richest in India after Hyderabad Deccanâ€?. The Pakistani Historian specialized in the history of the Princely States, Yaqoob Khan Bangash, records : â€œIn
Present Nawab Salah-udDin Ahmed Abbasi
1947, Bahawalpur State was one of the two States from the Punjab States Agencies(the other being Khairpur), which acceded to Pakistan(fifty days after the independence of Pakistan). Bahawalpur State existed as a separate unit in Pakistan, with later the status of a province, till 1955 when it was merged in the One Unit. In 1970, as the One Unit unraveled, Bahawalpur State was not restored but merged into the Punjab province as a division.â€? â€œBahawalpur as a State came into existence in 1727 and Amir Sadiq Muhammad Khan I ( 1727-1746) was agreed upon as its first ruler, who belonged to the Abbasi Caliphs of Bagdad, the branch of Abbasi over a sufficient period of timeâ€?,
Bahawalpur as an independent entity so far as the internal affairs are concerned. He is pained to remember late Deputy Prime Minister of India, Patel, offering to merge the Firozpur district of Indian Punjab with Bahawalpur State and to keep it as an autonomous region of India, if the then Nawab was to accede to India. â€œHe (Nawab Abbasi V) was first approached by Sardar Patel and the Indian leader sent him a blank paper to write his terms.â€? One can understand the agony of a titular Nawab since his grandfather had his Rs.120 million at Jinnahâ€™s disposal and even preferred to forgo due compensation of the properties at Delhi, Shimla and Mussoorie. And none can forget the late Nawab of Bahawalpur purchasing six Rolls Royce cars at a time and using them for garbage collection to teach the British company a lesson! Next Column: The Zamorins of Calicut and Vasco Da Gama (The writer is a Socio-political Historian. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org)
Rolls Royce once used for transportation of cityâ€™s wastage in Pakistan by Nawab of Bahawalpur
Afatab Hussain Gillani of Islamia University of Bahawalpur presents the historical roots and adds: â€œBahawalpur was a Princely State(1727-1947) established by Abbasis. They ruled over the State for more than 200 years. After the fall of Bagdad(1258) the Abbasids migrated to Egypt and then to Sindh. They have been gifted the region of â€œChudharyâ€? of Nawab of Multan Hayatullah Tareen on the recommendation of Gilant and Bukhari priests of Uch.â€? Uch, also known as Uch Sharif, is 73 KMs(45 miles) from Bahawalpur. Prof. Gillani, who teaches Pakistan Studies, concludes in his paper â€œHistory of Bahawalpur State and its Cultureâ€?: â€œThis was the first State which merged with Pakistan unconditionally on 3 October 1947. As Hindu leadership had the pressure on Nawab of Bahawalpur, Sir Sadiq Muhammad Khan V, to merged his State with India instead of Pakistan. Hindu leaders Nehru and Patel met the Nawab through Mustaq Ahmed Gurmani for annexation of his State with India, Nawab of Bahawalpur had shown his character and he said: the majority of the people of the State are Muslims. How can I merge the State with India? My front door opens in Pakistan and backdoor opens in India. Every gentleman may love to enter in his house from the front door!â€? The 21 gun salute State during the British regime, Bahawalpur contributed in the Pakistan movement too. After the death of Nawab Abbasi V in 1966, his elder son, Muhammed Abbas Ali Khan, became the Nawab. He died in 1988 and the present Nawab ascended to Gaddi. He draws the allowance(Privy Purse like) of Rs.4,00,000 per month from the Government of Pakistan, but the flame of his self-respect continues to
burn ! Nawab says : â€œ I canâ€™t see the agreement between Quaid-e-Azam Jinnah and my grandfather Nawab Sadiq being shredded into pieces. We have no objection to creation of a new province but we will not let anyone at any cost to include Bahawalpur in Seraiki provinceâ€? He is prepared to cut off the water flowing downward from
Bahawalpur dam or the railways running. â€œBahawalpur was never the part of Punjab and was always an independent State but General Yahya Khan, without assigning any reasons or recording any note on files, merged Bahawalpur with Punjab.â€? The Nawab considers it a â€œsinâ€? since the agreement with Jinnah has the provision to continue
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Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Chinese army conducts live-fire drills in Tibet
sonnel who have illegally crossed the boundary so as to avoid the escalation.”
BEIJING: The Chinese military conducted livefire exercises in Tibet amid ongoing tensions between Indian and Chinese troops at the Dokalam area in Sikkim. Chinese media reported that the People's Liberation Army conducted live-fire exercises in Southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region. The brigade that conducted the drills was from the PLA's Tibet Military Command, and has since long been stationed around the middle and lower reaches of the Brahmaputra river. The drill included quick delivery of troops and different military units working together on joint attacks. In videos posted on the internet, soldiers were seen using anti-tank grenades and missiles against bunkers and howitzers for artillery coverage. Radar units identifying enemy aircraft and soldiers using anti-aircraft artillery to destroy targets were also visible. Both, India and China have been engaged in a stand-off in the Dokalam area, where China has been demanding immediate pull-out of the Indian troops. Dola La, is the Indian name for the region which Bhutan recognises as Dokalam, while China staunchly believes it is part of its Donglang region. A 220km section of the 3,488 km long India-China border from Jammu and Kashmir to Arunachal
Pradesh, falls in Sikkim. Most recently, China said India should not use “trespass” into the area as a “policy tool” to achieve its political targets. Asking New Delhi to immediately withdraw its troops in order to avoid any escalation of the situation, Chinese Foreign Ministry said it was in “close communication” with foreign missions in Beijing on the issue. Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said, “Since the illegal trespass by Indian border personnel, many foreign diplomats in China felt shocked about this and (wanted) to confirm whether it was true. The Chinese side maintains close communication with the foreign diplomatic missions on the issues they are interested.” Kang said the Sikkim section of the India-China boundary is mutually recognised by both the sides. “This time Indian border personnel illegally trespassed the boundary into the Chinese territory. We stress that the Indian side should not take the trespass as a policy tool to reach or realise their political targets.” When asked if Beijing had maintained that its patience was running out over the issue, he said, “We have reiterated our position on the illegal trespass by the Indian side. You must be very clear about it. We hope the Indian side can get a clear understanding of the current situation and take immediate measures to withdraw the per-
Opposition backs Centre’s stand The government and major opposition parties agreed on the need for India and China to pursue diplomatic options to resolve the Doklam standoff even as they backed the action of Indian troops in stalling a Chinese attempt to build a road through Bhutanese territory. Opposition leaders were supportive of the Indian position that China has violated the commitments arrived at through the special representatives' dialogue, with Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav, a former defence minister, saying China betrayed Nehru and would behave similarly with the NDA government if it let its guard down. NCP leader Sharad Pawar, also a former defence minister, said India could borrow a leaf from China and be patient in resolving the face-off without resorting to hasty actions. While the opposition leaders supported India's stand, CPM leader Sitaram Yechury asked the government to "introspect" whether its policies on the Dalai Lama and military exercises with the US and Japan had contributed to the tensions. The interaction saw foreign secretary S Jaishankar explaining that the Chinese claim to the territory near the SikkimTibet-Bhutan tri-junction and its invocation of the 1890 Britain-China agreement is misleading. He quoted from a letter written by Jawaharlal Nehru in 1959 to belie the Chinese claim that India's first PM had accepted the 1890 treaty over Sikkim approving Beijing's claim on the Doklam area.
Modi Govt most trusted in the world: Report As per the latest report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), an estimated 73 per cent of Indians have faith in the Narendra Modi-led NDA government- the highest in the world. The ruling party has completed over half its tenure and one can effectively say that the PM has successfully maintained political stability and rendered decisive leadership.
India was followed by Justin Trudeau's Canadian government which has managed to win the trust of 62 per cent citizens. The report stated that Theresa May's British government stands at 41 per cent and the United States government led by Donald Trump only has mere 30 per cent support. The top five countries included Turkey and Russia, both at 58 per cent and Germany with 55. The report said
that trust in the government is strongly correlated with citizens' approval of their country's leadership and perceived spread of corruption in government in OECD countries. Also, actions of the countries' leaders and the consequential public opinion about them has an impact on the public perception of the government institutions they represent.
Indian Home Secy discusses immigration issues with UK counterparts in London The Indian Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrisi was visiting the UK for a week, as a part of his India-UK Home Affairs dialogue, which concluded on Monday 17 July. He addressed media at the High Commission of India where he discussed the variety of issues from extradition of overstaying Indians, UK visa delays to post-study work visas for Indian students. The India-UK Home Affairs Dialogue was set up during UK Prime Minister Theresa May's visit to India in November 2016. The first meeting under the process took place in New Delhi in May and the meeting in London was co-chaired by Mehrishi with UK Permanent Secretary Philip Rutnam. When asked if the extradition of fugitive liquor baron Vijay Mallya and former IPL chief Lalit Modi were raised specifically with the UK authorities, Mehrishi said the issues that affect extradition ‘across the board’ were discussed, rather than specific cases. "Mr
Mallya's case is subjudice. The issues around extradition discussed during the meetings only focused on any difficulties that may arise in extradition cases in general.” India and Britain have an extradition treaty, signed in 1992, but so far only one extradition has taken place under the arrangement - that of Samirbhai Vinubhai Patel. It is believed there might be a possibility of extradition to UK from India in the coming 10 days- a proof that the treaty works. The issue of women abandoned by Indian-origin and NRI spouses from
the UK back in India was also raised by India and it was agreed that follow-up meetings on that would take place next week with senior Indian High Commission diplomats. The Union Home Secretary held talks with Brandon Lewis, UK minister for immigration and others over the past week, most of which are not in the "public domain". The UK, on the other hand, raised the issue of illegal Indian immigrants overstaying in the UK. Mehrisi reportedly said, "Approximately, the UK has been able to identify in the region of about 1,000 illegal immigrants from India a year. We made it clear that it is a matter of policy for India that anybody identified as an Indian who is illegally in the UK, we will expedite his or her return. "The only issue is about cross-checks and time taken because sometimes illegal immigrants, understandably, destroy their documents and therefore identifying them as Indians takes a lot of time," he added.
BJP picks Venkaiah Naidu for Vice-President Continued from page 1 However, sources said he “wept inconsolably” at a meeting of the BJP's top leaders, including PM Modi, where he was finalised for vice-president. “He broke down and said the party is like his mother, it would be difficult for him to leave the BJP after so many decades,” said sources. They added that as he sobbed, senior leaders like Finance Minister Arun Jaitley went to him, and consoled him. Naidu eventually accepted the decision. It was reported that Naidu was approached by Shah a week ago, but his heart was not in it. “He said he wanted to be with PM Modi at least till 2019, and then explore sanyaas from politics,” sources said. Shah informed the 68 year old that he was the choice of most in the BJP and RSS, and the PM was not ready to let go of him but had to be persuaded. Later when Naidu filed his nomination papers, it was in the presence of top leaders including Modi. Later after he quit the BJP and no longer belonged to any party, Naidu in his meeting with the press, said, “I
lost my mother at a very young age of one year and six months. Then I treated my party as my mother and they have really brought me up to this level. It is very painful to leave the party... That's why I became a little emotional.” Following Shah's announcement, Modi endorsed Naidu with a tweet that read, “I know M Venkaiah Naidu Garu for years. Have always admired his hard work and tenacity. A fitting candidate for the office of vice-president.” President poll sees highest voting In a direct contest between NDA's Ram Nath Kovind and the Opposition's Meira Kumar, over 99 per cent
of elected representatives - MPs and MLAs, across the country cast their votes to elect India's next President. Voting was held in 32 polling stations, including one in Parliament House and one each in every state assembly. Arunachal Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Assam, Gujarat, Bihar, Haryana, Himachal, Jharkhand, Nagaland, Uttarakhand and Puducherry recorded 100 per cent voting while in Parliament House, the voting percentage was 99 per cent, Lok Sabha secretary general Anoop Mishra, who is the returning officer for the poll, said. The voting percentage for MPs was 99.61 per cent while it was 99.37 per cent for MLAs.
Cranberries ARE superfoods
- Source of antioxidants and boost good gut bacteria, say scientists
Cranberries have long been hailed a 'superfood' for their cancer-fighting properties but now they have been proven to benefit our gut health, say experts. For the first time, certain friendly microbes have been found to grow when fed a carbohydrate in the fruit. Good intestinal bacteria not only improves digestion but also our brain health, mood, emotions, energy levels, and weight loss. Whats more, our microflora has also increasingly been linked to many aspects of health, including aging, arthritis, depression, cancer and heart conditions. Now cranberries – in supplement form – may be a candidate to improve our gut health, says study
author professor David Sela, nutritional microbiologist at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He said: 'They make molecules and compounds that help us, or they make it to help some of the hundreds of other kinds of beneficial members of the [gut health] community. 'There are thought to be as many bacterial cells
in our bodies as our own human cells, so we're basically eating for two. 'These gut bacteria are extremely significant to us, they really are very important. Our food makes a difference for us as well as the beneficial microbes that we carry around with us.' These probiotics are found in adults to some degree but the highest concentrations are found
in the guts of newborn, breast-fed babies, explains professor Sela. 'They are consuming things we can't digest, or they are helping other beneficial microbes that we find it hard to introduce as probiotics, or their presence can help keep pathogens away,' he said. It is not clear yet what the impacts to health are but the findings are promising. 'Prebiotics and probiotics might interact with our own physiology to help balance the microbiome, and we already know that when things are not in balance you can get problems like inflammation,' he added. 'Underlying chronic inflammation can lead to or worsen many different medical conditions.'
9/11 survivors at risk of heart attack, lung disease: Study
People who were exposed to the dust cloud or sustained physical injuries during the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre on September 11, 2001, may be at an increased long-term risk of developing asthma and heart attack, researchers
have found. “Our findings indicate that intense exposure on a single day — the first day of the disaster — contributes substantially to the risk of developing chronic conditions,” said Robert Brackbill from the New York City Department
Two men were playing a concert at the psychiatrist hospital where one of them worked as a musical therapist. The audience was a little too quiet for their taste. Exasperated with the mellow response, the guitarist decided to do something about it. So he grabbed the microphone, pointed to the group and yelled, “Are you ready to get a little crazy?” ************************* As a promotional gimmick for a restaurant, the manager sent out coupons offering people a free dinner on their birthdays. One day and anxious sounding man called and said, “I got your card. How did you find me?” “From a mailing list I purchased from a supplier,” the manager said, “Why?” “It used my real name, and I'm in the Witness Protection Program. What's the name of the company?” Reluctantly, the manager replied,” Moving Targets”. ************************* A first-grade teacher can’t believe her student isn’t hepped up about the Super Bowl. “It’s a huge event. Why aren’t you excited?”“Because I’m not a football fan. My parents love basketball, so I do too,” says the student.“Well, that’s a lousy reason,” says the teacher. “What if your parents were morons? What would you be then?”“Then I’d be a football fan.” ************************* Three fans were bemoaning the sorry state of their football team. “I blame the general manager,” said the first fan. “If he signed better players, we’d be a great team.” “I blame the players,” said the second fan. “If they made more of an effort, we’d score some points.” “I blame my parents,” said the third. “If I’d been born in Seattle, I’d be supporting a decent team.”
of Health and Mental Hygiene. The findings showed that individuals exposed to dust had a higher risk of non-neoplastic lung disease (lung conditions not involving tumours) other than asthma, while dust exposure on its own was
associated with an increased risk of asthma. The number of types of injuries, such as fractures, head injuries, or sprains, a person sustained on 9/11 was associated with an increased risk of angina or heart attack in a dosedependent manner, which
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Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
To Our Readers
We are publishing these items in good faith, kindly consult your Doctor before you try to implement any advice. We do not hold any responsibility for its efficacy...
Playing crosswords daily may keep your brain younger
Love to play word puzzles such as crosswords? It may improve brain function and keep your brain ten years younger, a study has found. The results indicated that the more regularly people engaged with word puzzles, the better they performed on cognitive tasks assessing attention, reasoning and memory — decline of which may lead to the development of dementia. Further, such people also have brain function equivalent to ten years younger than their age on tests of grammatical reasoning speed and short-term memory accuracy. “We found direct relationships between the frequency of word puzzle use and the speed and accuracy of performance on nine cognitive tasks assessing a range of aspects of function, including attention, reameans that the risk of having angina or a heart attack increased with every additional injury type, the researchers said. For the study, published in the journal Injury Epidemiology, the team enrolled 8,701 people to examine the association between physical injury or acute exposure to the dust cloud on the morning of September 11, 2001, and chronic disease up to 10 to 11 years later. The researchers found that there were 92 incident cases of heart disease, 308 cases of asthma, and 297 cases of non-neo-
soning and memory,” said Keith Wesnes, Professor at the University of Exeter in Britain. “Performance was consistently better in those who reported engaging in puzzles and generally improved incrementally with the frequency of puzzle use,” Wesnes added. For the study, presented at the Alzheimer’s Association I n t e r n a t i o n a l Conference (AAIC) 2017 held in London, the team analysed data from more than 17,000 healthy people aged 50 and over, submitted in an online trial. Along with keeping the mind active, exercising, avoiding smoking and eating a healthy balanced diet may also help reduce the risk of developing dementia, the researchers suggested. plastic lung disease among 7,503 area workers, 249 rescue workers, 131 residents and 818 passersby.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Fringe group demands Kamal Haasan's arrest
Zoya Afroz all set to make her Telugu debut
oya Afroz, Femina Miss India 2013 2nd Runner Up, has signed a Telugu movie loosely based on Sridevi's 1989 movie 'Chalbaaz'. Afroz will be playing a double role in the film, and is currently working on her body language, and following some of Sridevi's movies. Afroz said, “I'm very excited but at the same time nervous for this role, as my character is based on Sridevi ma'am. I have admired her since I was a child, and playing a character similar to hers, is going to be
ringe outfit Hindu Makkal Katchi has called for the arrest of megastar Kamal Haasan and contestant of 'Big Boss Tamil', claiming the show demeans the Tamil culture. Responding to the demand, Haasan said, “I am not bound to reply to the group which demands my arrest, but I have full confidence in the law. Only those who are genuinely affected can ring the bells of judiciary. The present system of judiciary knows that very well and I am confident about that. If they want me to be arrested, let that happen. The law will protect me. The justice will protect me.” Regarding allegations of the show disrupting Tamil culture, 'Ulaganayagan' said, “I don't want to become naughty and talk about various things that these people have been qui.et on. But 'Bigg Boss' has been on air for 11 years. May be because these guys don't understand Hindi. But the program has also come in Kannada. It seems they don't know Kannada either. These guys liked me when I did 'Dasavatharam'. They didn't like me when I made 'Viswaroopam'. They don't like when I go in another direction.”
Malayalam film artists turn against Dileep
really challenging. I'm really looking forward to this film and hope to show it to her too.” She added, “I have seen 'Chalbaaz' and I am watching more of her films to understand her screen presence and how she delivers her dialogues. It is an exciting thing for me to play a similar character and I want to do justice to this film and my part.”
I am open to do more Tamil films if...- Kajol K ajol is all set to make a comeback in Kollywood after two decades, with Dhanush's 'Velai Illa Pattadhari 2'. She will play a character named Vasundhara, a “self made, awesome woman” as the actress described her. When asked why she chose the movie, given her debut and the last stint in Kollywood was the 1996 blockbuster 'Minsara Kanavu', the 'Dilwale' actor said, “Number One, because of the fact that I liked the script. Number Two was the fact that they lied to me and told that I didn't have to speak Tamil in the film. I actually thought that I would have 50 per cent of my dialogues in English, which is a lot, but let me tell you, it is not 50 per cent. It took me a day or two to get used to it. To look a little better doing it. I think I have managed convincingly so far.” She was all praise for director Soundarya, and called her “wonderful”. “She was very focused, very clear, knew
exactly what she wanted from every scene, how she wanted to shoot it, etc,. It was a pleasure working with her,” Kajol said. About co-star Dhanush, she said, “He is very talented. He has written the screenplay as well as dialogues for the film. He was very, very interested in how to work it around. They really made an effort to work around me as well to make sure that everything went off well.”
Award for Tamil films
ollowing his arrest for allegedly plotting the abduction and sexual assault of a top Malayalam film actress, Dileep has been expelled by the Association of Malayalam Movie Artists as treasurer and member. AMMA general secretary Mammooty said that the decision was taken in a meeting held in his house, attended by top actors like Mohanlal and Prithviraj. He said, “The victim is also one among us. We have been with her, and we will continue to support her. This is our decision individually and as an association,” he said in a press briefing, with Mohanlal by his side. The group had just last week held a press meet expressing support for Dileep. Several members like actor/MLAs Mukesh and Ganesh Kumar even yelled down journalists raising questions. Both Mammuka and Lal extended their apologies for the incident. Not just AMMA, the controversial actor has also been expelled from the Film Employees Federation of Kerala. Sources said out of personal enmity, Dileep offered a sum of £150,000 to main accused Sunil Kumar to target the actress. She was abducted and molested in Ernakulam while on her way back from a shoot. A group of men stopped her car after a chase, sexually assaulted her in the moving vehicle for about two hours, allegedly took pictures and videos and blackmailed her before dropping her off by the road.
‘Lipstick Under My Burkha’
amil Nadu government's award for Tamil films have been resumed by the AIADMK government after several representatives from the film industry debated in its favour along with some MLAs. The Tamil Nadu State Awards for the years 2009 and 2014 have been announced and awards will be given under 30 different categories. Vikram won Best Actor
of 2009, for his stellar performance in 'Kandasamy', top hero Vijay Sethupathi won Best Villain for 'Sundarapandian', and Aishwarya Rajesh won Best Actress for 'Kaaka Muttai'. Nayanthara scored Best Actress of the year 2013, for 'Raja Rani', while Sivakarthikeyan won Best Actor (Special Prize) of 2011 for his debut feature film 'Marina'.
Join four women and their rebellion to find freedom in their own way.
‘Munna Michael ’
A young man from the street with an undying love for the King of Pop.
Katrina 'privileged' to work
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Akshay Kumar plays a Bengali in Reema Kagti's 'Gold'
with the Khans again
Ajay Devgn makes his Marathi debut
fter reports of Ajay Devgn's possible foray into Marathi films began to do the rounds, it has been confirmed that the actor will play a guest role in a family drama headlined by Nana Patekar. Ajay Devgn will produce the film along with Abhinav Shukla and Manish Mishra's Watergate Productions. They had already put the floor in May. Director Satish Rajwade, of 'Mumbai Delhi Mumbai' and 'Ti Saddhya Kay Karte' fame, said, “I've been discussing the film with Abhinav for over a year now. We've always wanted to work together and I'm happy to be collaborating with him.” He added, “Ajay and Nana are superstars and I'm really excited to be working with such powerhouse talents.” While both the actors have collaborated before in films like 'Bhoot', 'Apaharan', and 'Raajneeti', this will be their first regional outing together. The film will also star Sumeet Raghavan and Iravati Harshe in pivotal roles.
fter working with some of the leading men in the industry to deliver several hits, 'Jagga Jasoos' actress Katrina Kaif considers herself “privileged”. “I have worked with Aamir, Shah Rukh and Salman before and those were wonderful films. So, I am very happy to be a part of great films, good scripts, work with good directors and co-stars. I think I am really privileged right now to have exciting work,” she said. Speaking about her latest, 'Jagga Jasoos', with ex-beau Ranbir Kapoor, she said, “It's been a long journey of three years. Anurag Basu (director) has given everything to the film. Ranbir Kapoor and I have put in a lot of love and hard work in it. I really hope audiences like it.”
Jacqueline practices pole dancing like a pro
kshay Kumar took off to Bradford last week to kick off Reema Kagti's sports drama, 'Gold', based on India's first Olympic Gold in Hockey, as a free country at the 1948 London Olympics. It has been reported that the actor has been learning Bengali from a language coach on the UK set of the film. A source from the crew said, “A dialect tutor and a special trainer to explain traditional Bengali mannerisms have been working with Akshay, who has been prepping for the part since May. The costume team has been working with fabrics that reflect that designs from Kolkata in the '40s and have been tailored to enhance Akshay's character.” Details of Akshay's characters are yet to be revealed. A look of his character and leading lady of the film, Mouni Roy, that surfaced online, showed him in a cleanshaven avatar, in a kurta and slick hair. Roy can be seen in a Bengali-style blouse and sari with a crimped hairdo. “Mouni plays Akshay's love interest in the film and will also be seen speaking in Bengali. She will wear bright sarees in shades of red with puffy blouses and roses in her hair to be in sync with the showcased era. It's a small yet prominent part,” the source said.
'Mubarakan' first Hindi film to shoot in England’s Weybridge
ormer Miss Sri Lanka, Jacqueline Fernandez not only has the fittest body in town, she knows how to maintain it. In a recent Instagram, the actress gave us a peek into her new fad, and we have to say, it is mighty impressive. The 'Dishoom' actress uploaded a video of herself practising pole dance with a caption that
read, “Burning the midnight oil with my @lanaroxy (spot miumiu).” On the work front, star Salman Khan has revealed that Jackie will team up with him for director Remo D'souza's next. In a statement, the actor said, “Yes, Remo's film will have Jacqueline and me. She's superbly talented dancer and she will do a
brilliant job.” He added that the film will also star a nine-year-old girl who will play his daughter. “My character, in the film is a widower, who has a nine-year-old daughter. She wants him to participate in a dance competition and enrols his name for it. For the competition, he has to learn to dance. Jackie trains me to do that.”
I will think thrice before signing a film: Tiger Shroff
fter delivering two box-office hits and one failure, Tiger Shroff's fourth 'Munna Michael' is all set to hit screens this month. Speaking about his approach for any role, Shroff said he likes to prepare, but refrains from over-preparing. “It depends a lot on my coactor's performance; I adapt myself accordingly. I can usually pre-empt my co-actor's reaction in a
scene, but Nawazji (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) is an exception. He kept throwing unexpected reactions my way. It was wonderful because it made me up my game as an actor.” About choosing scripts, he said he thinks about the audience first. “When I am offered an action film, I check if its emotional quotient and the incentive for the hero to save the heroine are strong. Otherwise, it just
becomes a show reel. The audience will applaud my action sequences only when these factors fall into place.” Shroff added, “I pay attention to the critics and I have immense respect for them. But, I only follow those who are unbiased- reviews help me push my limits and work harder. I want to prove them wrong soon. Also, they have to pick on something, right? Nobody is perfect.”
roducer-director Anees Bazmee's 'Mubarakan' is reportedly the first Hindi film to be shot in the beautiful neighbourhood of Weybridge in England. Bazmee said he chose the typical British neighbourhood for his family entertainer. “This beautifully looking neighbourhood was so co-operative with us throughout the shoot. Our producers ensured that they followed all the rules, informed them everything about the shoot, and never did anything that would trouble them,” Bazmee said. He added, “We not only shot during the day but also in the night. Such detailed discussions like using light in the night shoot also happened with them so that it doesn't disturb them. On a few days, when we wanted to shoot a Christmas scene, they would switch on their decorative lights in the lawn as a friendly gesture.” 'Mubarakan' features Arjun Kapoor in a double role, along with Anil Kapoor, Ileana D'Cruz, and Athiya Shetty. Speaking about his shoot, Bazmee said, “We are the first Hindi film to have shot in such locations and I can assure you that next time, when a Bollywood film goes there, they would be welcomed with open arms.”
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Slough man on trial for sharing terrorist propaganda A radicalised man shared terrorist propaganda using a mobile phone emblazoned with the black flag of the Islamic State group, a court heard. Taha Hussain, 21, from Slough is on trial accused of nine counts of disseminating terror documents via smart phone apps including WhatsApp. The Old Bailey heard he became increasingly extreme in the two years before his arrest in August last year. The defendant denies all the charges against him. Mr Hussain is also charged with one count of encouraging terrorism through posts on Twitter. When police seized his mobile phone, they found the black flag of IS on his screen saver and his PIN number was 9117 - in apparent homage to the 9/11 and 7/7 terror attacks, the court heard. Prosecutor Mark
Paltenghi told jurors on Thursday: "It may be that this is a combination of the dates of two of the most significant acts of terrorism this century the attacks upon the Twin Towers in New York and other targets in America on September 11, 2001, and part of the date of the London bombings on July 7, 2005." Over 11 months, Mr Hussain is accused of distributing YouTube videos and audio files on topics including Charlie Hebdo and bombings in Britain and the US as well as a copy of an IS magazine. Mr Paltenghi said: "In essence, it is alleged that when all this material was sent it was done with the intention that it would be understood by its recipients as a direct or indirect encouragement to the commission, instigation or preparation of acts of terrorism." The trial continues.
NHS to recruit 2000 more GPs from overseas, but none from India The NHS will look overseas to recruit around 2,000 more GPs in order to meet its staff targets, the head of NHS England has reportedly said. Simon Stevens said four times the 500 extra doctors that had been planned are needed from countries such as New Zealand, Australia and the rest of the EU. However Indian doctors who came in the 90s to fill in the NHS shortage and have proved to be assets with their expertise, have not been considered this time shocking the diaspora. There are currently 40,000 Indian-origin doctors in the UK. The Government has set a target of recruiting 5,000 more GPs by 2020, but has been widely expected to miss this goal.
l Bolton Hindu Forum presents, Sports Mela 2017, on July 23, Sunday, from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm, at St. Catherine's Academy, Newby Road, Bolton, BL2 5EQ
ARIES Mar 21 - Apr 20 If you're currently romanti-
cally involved, your love could well go from strength to strength in the area of passion. The work that you are involved with at this time is likely to demand a great deal of energy and initiative from you. This will also involve a lot of moving around and a need to establish a wider network of contacts.
TAURUS Apr 21 - May 21 At home, be at your diplo-
matic best and try not to tread on anyone's toes. Passions will run from hot to cold, and relationships may suffer. Even the most strong-willed Taureans will be more open to compromise to keep the peace. Plan your spending and set sensible budgets to reach your financial goals.
GEMINI May 22 - June 22 You will make your best
progress by focusing your mental and physical energies on what you want to achieve. The underlying trend seems to be pulling you into a much wider social circle now. This is bound to enrich your life and give you a deeper sense of purpose. The prevailing pattern of planets gives you a marvellous opportunity - take advantage.
CANCER Jun 22 - Jul 22
Your attention turns to money and finance this week. You are satisfied with your love life, but now you’ve got to get busy making cash. You have much professional territory yet to cover, with Jupiter, planet of expansion and good luck aspecting your work sector, there is no reason why you should not get there.
Strong support from women as Shree Ghansham Temple nears completion Kokila Patel Members of the Shree Kutch Satsang Swaminarayan Temple, Woolwich are all set to inaugurate a massive four storey temple and community centre. Following years of perseverance and commitment, construction of what will be the biggest Hindu temple in South East London, has come to and end. The new temple includes multi-functional facilities for the growing congregation of the Kutchi community, a separate hall for worship and areas for the youth. It also features classrooms, where yoga, IT, Gujarati, English, and Mathematics classes can be arranged. The huge Shikhar Banddh Shree Ghansham Temple is built from the sweat and blood of not one, but many community members who have voluntarily invested their time and energy in building what they've dreamt of. When Asian Voice visited the temple first-hand
update on the progressing new establishment, what surprised was the lack of engineers, building contractors, electricians, and labour workers on site. Instead, there amongst those present were the satsang Chairman, convenor of the new temple, Trustees, Secretary, Treasurer, and several community members including women and the youth. It was brought to notice that over 30 women members have been actively
participating in fulfilling the mammoth-sized feat. Satsang members were grateful for them and praised them for pulling half of the project's weight. “Several women from our community have graciously helped us with the construction work. They have laboured with us day and night. Settled in Woolwich, these women unloaded over 90,000 bricks brought in trucks, and carried heavy baskets filled with concrete mix to and fro from the basement. As the temple
construction nears completion, we got to watch women extend their support in various areas including interior decoration, and loading waste in their cars and dumping them all the way in the council dumpyard,” said chairman Laljibhai Haalai. Grand opening of the temple is will be span across nine days of celebration, including a grand procession, Rukmani vivah, and inclusion of youth and local community groups for participation.
Leicester celebrates Rathyatra Hundreds of festival-goers have joined a procession in which a 40ft (12.1m) chariot was pulled through Leicester city centre. The Hare Krishna Festival of Chariots began in Granby Street with a welcome ceremony and ended at Cossington Park, in Belgrave, on Sunday afternoon. Leicester hosts one of the largest celebrations of its type in Europe, organisers said.
The chariot carried deities of the Lord Jagannatha and his sister Subhadra. The vibrant procession was accompanied with music, singing and dancing as it made its way through the city. Pradyumna Das, the president of the the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), said Rathayatra, as it is also known, was "the second
largest such festival in Europe." The 5,000-year-old event was first brought to the West by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami, the
founder of ISKCON, in 1967. At Cossington Park, revellers were entertained with dance, live music, drama and exhibitions.
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The Sun transits your first house and this affects your personal identity, appearance, outward behaviour, and self-expression. This marks the peak of your physical solar cycle, and you are in the position to make an impression on others, and to assert your personal influence. Increased energy and a renewed feeling of confidence is with you now, so take advantage of your charisma to achieve your goals.
LEO Jul 23 - Aug 23
VIRGO Aug 24 - Sep 23
Sun's transit of your 12th Solar House indicates that experience will put you in a deeply reflective mood. This is a favourable time for getting away from usual routines and seeking a retreat for a few days. All the better if you are interested in such things as meditation, yoga and therapies that help you to get in closer touch with your inner self.
LIBRA Sep 24 - Oct 23
Efforts to restructure and transform your lifestyle are more likely to meet with success. Experience you have built up in the past will now stand you in good stead. If you are thinking of investments, then this is an opportune time to go ahead with your plans. Co-operative ventures are likely to generate financial success.
SCORPIO Oct 24- Nov 22
More than any other time of the year, your focus is drawn to your career and standing in the society. This is the time when you are more interested in, and focused on, accomplishing something important. Contact with authority figures is more likely during this period. Recognition will come your way whether you ask for it or not, and the responsibility that goes with it.
SAGITTARIUS Nov 23 - Dec 21 Your horizons are most certainly expanding. Your philosophical thoughts will make your mind run wild. You are feeling most adventurous and willing to achieve higher knowledge and spiritual growth. This may take you to far off lands in pursuit of your new-found goals. With Jupiter transiting your house of gains, there will be many opportunities so don't miss out on ways to better yourself in the coming weeks.
CAPRICORN Dec 22 - Jan 20 The Sun energizes your sector of change, transformation and regeneration. On a more practical level, you may be dealing with joint finances and shared resources now more than usual. You should also make sure that your tax affairs are in order. You are more willing than usual to explore and delve deeper into life's secrets and arrive at meaningful conclusions. AQUARIUS Jan 21 - Feb 19
As the Sun transits your seventh house, you have a greater need than usual to be in a relationship. The emphasis is on "us" rather than "me". Social interactions of a personal nature are highlighted. This is likely to be an extremely busy time for most of you. Use tact and diplomacy in your dealing, otherwise you are likely to come across as over confident and egotistical.
The Sun moves into your solar sixth house, the accent shifts to your job interests and physical welfare. This is a period that finds you tending to your daily routines, and health matters. You seek to perfect your skills and as a result, you can be more critical than usual - don't be hard on yourself. At the moment, relationships are experiencing major transformations - those with shaky foundations should be extra careful.
PISCES Feb 20 - Mar 20
Prideview Cricketers’ Cup raises £20,000 for charity
The Prideview Cricketers’ Cup on July 8th conducted the 6th edition of its tournament. Ten teams from the business community participated in the tournament. During the tournament an amount of £20,000 was raised and it was contributed to 'One Kind Act', a charity that supports a number of projects for underprivileged communities in India. The amount was raised through team entry fees, advertising slots in the tournament brochure, market stalls for local businesses and a raffle. There was also a charity auction run by Acuitus Auctions, which featured lots from the English and Indian cricket teams, and the top lot was a framed India shirt signed by Hardik Pandya which was sold for £2,400. Jade Pharmacy came out winners of the tournament, while the plate competition (The Prideview Champions Trophy) was won by the hosts, Prideview Properties.
Coach Shastri gets his own favourite support staff Ravi Shastri, who was appointed as India's cricket coach, will have his own favourite people as support staff. The three-member Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) comprising Sachin Tendulkar, Saurab Ganguly and VVS Laxman while recommending Ravi Shastri's name for the coach's job recommended the names of former Ravi Shastri India pacer Zaheer Khan for the team's bowling coach and batting legend Rahul Dravid as overseas batting coach. But Shastri wanted his own men as his support staff. The BCCI conceded to Shastri's demand and appointed former India and Tamil Nadu medium-pace bowler Bharat Arun as bowling coach while current batting coach Sanjay Bangar has been elevated to the title of assistant coach. R Sridhar will continue as fielding coach. Arun will join the Indian team on a two-year period until the end of the 2019 ICC World Cup. Bangar also will have the same duration. Interestingly, the trio had been roped into the Indian team's backroom personnel in August 2014 as assistants to then coach Duncan Fletcher during the rejig after the 1-3 Test series loss in England, and were praised by Shastri following India's win in the subsequent ODI series win on the same tour. While Bangar and Sridhar were given one-year extensions in June 2016, the Indian cricket team has not had a bowling coach since Arun's contract expired last year. What is not clear yet, however, is the nature and the roles of Zaheer Khan and Rahul Dravid with the current Indian team. Shastri, while addressing the media, did say this on the matter: "It all depends on for how many days Zaheer and Dravid want to assist team. Their services are most welcome." The decision to appoint Arun, as well as promote Bangar and extend Sridhar's contracts, was taken at the BCCI headquarters in Mumbai by the chairman of the Committee of Administrators (CoA) Vinod Rai after he heard recommendations from the four-member committee formed in the wake of Shastri's appointment to take a call on the assistant coaches of the Indian team.
FEDERER WINS RECORD 8TH WIMBLEDON
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
Roger Federer created history by winning eighth Wimbledon title and became the tournament’s oldest champion on Sunday with a straight-sets victory over injury-hit Marin Cilic. Federer claimed his 19th Grand Slam title 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 and at 35 is Wimbledon’s oldest men’s winner of the modern era, succeeding Arthur Ashe, who was almost 32 when he won in 1976. However, the Swiss superstar’s 11th Wimbledon final, and 29th at the Majors, will also be remembered for the moving sight of the popular Cilic breaking down in tears after slipping 3-0 behind in the second set. The seventh seeded Croatian, the 2014 US Open champion, sobbed inconsolably and buried his head in his towel as his title dream slipped away. Cilic had his first break point in the fourth game. It was saved by Federer and it was to be Cilic’s only glimmer of hope. Federer broke in the next game when his opponent suffered a nasty fall on the worn surface which was to ultimately undermine his challenge. Federer then served up two love service games before claiming the opener 6-3. The Swiss superstar swept into a 3-0 lead in the second set and at the changeover, Cilic slumped in his courtside chair in tears and in obvious pain.
Rybarikova to set up the summit clash against the seventime Grand Slam Champion.
The 28-year-old held serve on the resumption but the lethal barrage continued, Federer stretching his lead over his friend to 4-1. Cilic dropped the set 6-1 and called a medical timeout to have his left foot bandaged and take a painkiller. By the end of the second set, he had served just two aces compared to the 130 he had fired past bamboozled opponents in his previous six rounds. Federer pounced again with a break for 4-3 and wrapped up the one-sided final with a second serve ace to complete his coronation after just 1hour 41 minutes. Finally, Federer too wept after winning the final set. Muguruza hammers Venus Garbine Muguruza of Spain on Saturday came out with spectacular performance as she defeated seven-time Grand Slam Champion Venus Williams in straight sets to clinch her maiden
Wimbledon title. The 14thseeded Spaniard defeated Williams 7-5, 6-0 in what eventually turned out to be a one-sided contest lasting one hour and 23 minutes on the Centre court. After a hard-fought opening set lasting almost an hour, Muguruza needed just another 23 minutes to wrap her first Wimbledon title. The 23-year-old was overpowered by Serena Williams in the Wimbledon final in 2015 but against Venus, she brought her power game and increased the tempo and ferocity of her groundstrokes to stamp her authority on the match. Muguruza became the second Spaniard after Conchita Martinez to clinch the Wimbledon's title. On her way to the final, Muguruza took down top seed Angelique Kerber and seventh seed Svetlana Kuznetsova. In the semifinals, she defeated Magdalena
14-year-old boy wonder of cricket
Fourteen-year-old N i v e t h a n Radhakrishnan is a rare cricketing talent. At 8, Nivethan was called a boy wonder after he claimed a hat-trick in a TNCA fourth division league match in 2011 when he was just eight years. Six years later at 14 years, Nivethan, the ambidextrous spinner, is gearing up for his maiden TNPL stint with the Karaikudi Kaalai. Nivethan, in those six years, wasn't plying in Chennai but in Australia raking up hundreds as an opener and claiming wickets - with his left-arm orthodox and offspin in junior cricket for New South Wales (NSW). The southpaw's unbeaten 193 during a state match recently had even caught the attention of Aussie legends like Greg Chappell, Mark Waugh and Steve Waugh. Nivethan's father Anbu Selvan, a former U-25 Tamil Nadu state cricketer, shifted to Australia in 2012. Despite being part of the NSW junior
state team, Nivethan's heart was with Chennai, where he had begun playing. He was back playing TNCA lower division league earlier this year and had attended a trial with Kaalai. The Kaalai management backed the teenager during the draft and roped him in. Nivethan was going through his training under coach Robin Singh at Chepauk. Looking lean and fit, Nivethan never looked
out of place while facing the pacers and spinners. A little later, he turned up with the ball and bowled with both hands every alternate ball. "It's great to be back in Chennai. I didn't watch TNPL last year. However, now I'm in Chennai preparing for TNPL. I'm trying my best to adjust to the weather and the wickets here. But I'm confident of doing well," Nivethan said. Nivethan, a ninth standard student in Sydney, is "unorthodox and unique" in every sense. He attempted left-arm spin when he was six years old. He can bowl right-arm pace, off-spin, left-arm spin and is an opening bat. He terms Sir Garfield Sobers as his role model. "I love Sachin's technique. But I want to emulate what Sir Garry did as a complete allrounder. I love the West Indies team of his era. Right from a young age, I have been unorthodox be it batting or bowling. PC Prakash, assistant coach of Kaalai, believes Nivethan is capable of playing in the league of the big boys.
Hingis, Jamie Murray win mixed doubles Martina Hingis clinched her 23th Grand Slam title as the Swiss star and Scottish partner Jamie Murray beat Henri Kontinen and Heather Watson 6-4, 6-4 in the Wimbledon mixed doubles. Just hours after her compatriot Roger Federer won a record eighth Wimbledon singles crown, Hingis made it a double celebration for Switzerland on Centre Court. Top seeded Hingis and Murray, the brother of men's world number one Andy, saw off Finland's Kontinen and Britain's Watson. “I'm really pleased I contacted Jamie before Wimbledon. I'm really happy how we played. “We knew before the final a British player was going to win the mixed doubles. I'm just happy it was mine.” Hingis, 36, has now amassed six mixed doubles Grand Slam titles, 12 Grand Slam women's doubles crowns and also won five major singles titles, including Wimbledon in 1997 exactly 20 years ago. Murray got his hands on the Wimbledon mixed doubles silverware 10 years after first winning it with Jelena Jankovic.
Dhawan replaces Murali Vijay for Lanka series India opener Murali Vijay was ruled out of the Test series against Sri Lanka due to a wrist injury. He is replaced by Shikhar Dhawan in the 16member squad for the threematch rubber, starting July 26. “The All India Senior Selection Committee named Shikhar Dhawan as the replacement for injured Murali Vijay in the Test team, which is scheduled to travel to Sri Lanka for a three-match Test series,” Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary Amitabh Chaudhary said in a release. “Vijay, who had suffered a wrist injury during Australia’s tour of India, has complained of pain in his right wrist, while playing a preparatory match. The BCCI medical team has, therefore, advised that Vijay should continue his rehabilitation program,” he added. Indian team for Sri Lanka: Virat Kohli (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vice captain), Rohit Sharma, R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Abhinav Mukund.
Asian Voice | 22nd July 2017
INDIA IN SEMIS WITH WIN OVER NEW ZEALAND India’s skipper Mithali Raj becomes the highest run-getter in ODIs
Indian women crushed New Zealand by 186 runs and stormed into semi-finals of the ICC Women's World Cup. Skipper Mithali Raj slammed a century before left arm spinner Rajeshwari Gayakwad returned with a five-wicket haul to banish New Zealand. Put in to bat, India recovered from an early setback to score a challenging 265-7 in their final league match, riding on a 132-run stand between Mithali (109) and Harmanpreet Kaur (60) and a quick fire 70 by Veda Krishnamurthy. India then produced a superb bowling display to dismiss the Kiwis for 79 in just 25.3 overs. Left-arm spinner Rajeshwari Gayakwad (5-15) was the peak of the bowlers with her five-wicket haul, while Deepti Sharma (2-26) scalped two and Jhulan Goswami (114), Shikha Pandey (1-12) and Poonam
Yadav (1-12) picked one each respectively. Chasing 266 for a win, New Zealand lost two early wickets with both openers Suzie Bates (1) and Rachel Priest (5) back in the hut in 3 overs. At 7 for 2, Katey Martin (12) joined Amy Satterthwaite but the former was dismissed by spinner Deepti Sharma in her first over as New Zealand were reduced to 27-3 in the 11th over. Satterthwaite was then dismissed in the 18th over with Sushma Verma producing a brilliant stumping off Rajeshwari Gayakwad's bowling. Katie Perkins (1) too was sent back quickly with Sharma cleaning her up as New Zealand lost half their side for 52-5 in the 19th over. Gayakwad then dealt two more quick blows, removing Sophie Devine (7) and Hannah Rowe (4) as New
Zealand were reduced to 62-7 in 21.5 overs. India were reduced to 21 for 2 in the eighth over but a 132-run stand between Mithali (109) and Harmanpreet Kaur (60) for the third wicket brought them back into the match. A brilliant quick-fire 70 off just 45 balls from Krishnamurthy then took India past 260. However, the highlight of the match was Mithali's sixth ton in her 184th match and her 109 came from 123 balls and had 11 fours in it. Mithali, who in the earlier match against Australia became the highest run-getter in ODIs and first batswoman to reach 6,000 runs, continued with her good work in the tournament. She has already hit three half centuries and a 46 not out, besides the ton, from the seven matches she has played so far.
South Africa level series with 340 runs victory
The South Africans thrash England by 340 runs in the second test at Trent bridge and level the four-match series 1-1. Vernon Philander was the main wrecker of England with his fine allround bowling effort. England, which were chasing 474 runs for victory, collapsed to 133 all out on the fourth day. Man-of-the-match Philander took three wickets for 24 runs in 10 overs, including an early double strike. That gave him five wickets in total in a match where he also made scores of 54 and 42 with the bat. No England batsman made a 50 in the second innings where former captain Alastair Cook's 42 was the top score. The more immediate task for England on Monday was to see if they could at least keep South Africa in the field. They failed miserably, the hosts bowled out in 44.2 overs despite South Africa being without Kagiso Rabada after the fast bowler was suspended for swearing at England's Ben Stokes at Lord's. For England captain Joe Root this chastening defeat, the hosts' first loss in eight Tests at Trent Bridge, was in marked contrast to his first match as skipper at Lord's. “We weren't good enough with the bat for the whole game,” he said. England resumed with
Hashim Amla scores 8,000 runs in test cricket South Africa opener Amla Hashim achieved another milestone of scoring 8,000 Test runs and become fourth South Africa batsmen to score more than 8,000 runs in Test cricket. While playHashim Amla ing against England in the second Test at Trent Bridge on Friday Amla achieved the mark with a pull shot off Mark Wood. Other batsmen, who scored more than 8,000 runs are, Jacques Kallis (13,206), Graeme Smith (9,253) and AB de Villiers (8,074). Amla is the slowest among the four to reach this landmark. Last year when Amla reached 7,000 runs mark he took 152 innings to achieve the mark which is four more than Graeme Smith, who is the quickest South African to reach 7,000 runs mark. At the same time, Kallis and De Villiers are second and third on the list, both have taken 151 innings. Amla, who is a consistent performer for the Proteas, has achieved a lot in international cricket. However, he has been going through a lean patch as he averages just 31 in his last 12 matches. Earlier, Amla became the 8th player to score a hundred on his 100th Test. After scoring the hundred he expresses his frustration at not being able to score big runs consistently. “There was a bit of frustration that I have been not getting runs in the last couple of games and not contributing to the team’s success. I wanted to my focus as true as possible. No side attractions, no razzmatazz, I had a more important thing and that was to try and work on my game. I needed to score runs,” he had said.
Afghan immigrant Qadri spins Derbyshire to win
16-year-old The Hamidullah Qadri, the Afghanistan-born took spinner, County Derbyshire Cricket Club to victory since 2015. Off-spinner Qadri who arrived in the UK with his parents aged 11 in 2011, is the champiyoungest onship cricketer in Hamidullah Qadri Derbyshire’s history. His 5-60 on debut took Derbyshire to victory over Glamorgan in Cardiff by 39 runs. “It was an honour to lead the team off,” said Qadri. “Especially as it was my debut and it was our first win in almost two years.” Qadri left Afghanistan unable to speak English and having never played cricket before, but over the past six year has become rather good at both. He was spotted by coaches after taking the game up at school and has been through the Derbyshire age groups, playing league cricket for Alvaston and Boulton.
Tamim Iqbal denies 'acid attack' behind Essex exit England's Mark Wood trudges off after his dismissal at Trent Bridge
Cook and fellow left-handed opener Jennings both unbeaten on nought. Philander, renowned for his ability to move the ball at a lively fast-medium pace, had a wicket with just his fifth ball on Monday. South Africa-born Jennings (three) was undone by a nip back delivery that uprooted his off stump. Gary Ballance, in his third stint of Test cricket and under huge pressure for his place, was then lbw to Philander on review for four. Philander had taken two for eight in 19 balls, with Root once more coming in after a top-order slump. Root had made 190 in his first innings as captain at
Lord's and top-scored with 78 in their first innings 205 this match. But he fell cheaply on Monday, Chris Morris producing an excellent yorker to knock over the Yorkshireman's off-stump. Cook's innings ended when he was beaten for pace by a well-directed Morris bouncer and gloved down the legside, where wicket-keeper Quinton de Kock held a fine catch. England lost their last three wickets on 133, paceman Duanne Olivier ending the match when he dismissed Mark Wood and James Anderson with successive deliveries. The series will continue at The Oval on July 27.
Bangladesh opener Tamim Iqbal has denied the reports of acid attack on him and his family. Tamim took on social media Facebook and rejected rumours of quitting the English county cricket club Essex because of a hate crime targeting his family. Earlier, there were reports that the 28-yearold player's family faced acid attack after that the left-handed batsman quit his county club Essex after just one game. "Some media reported that we were the target of attempted hate crime. This is really not true," the Bangladesh vice-captain posted on his Facebook page. "England is one my of favourite places to play cricket and Essex have been entirely gracious even though I had to leave early." Tamim, wife Ayesha and their one-year-old son were alleged attacked after which they returned home, said Bangladesh's Daily Star website.