Page 1



Double trouble for Indian tennis

Political uncertainty in Pak as SC disqualifies Gilani

For report see page 32

For report see page 22



Let noble thoughts come to us from every side

First & Foremost Asian Weekly in Europe 23rd June to 29th June 2012

NDA undecided on its presidential candidate

Saina overcomes Li Xuerui to lift third Indonesian Open title

UPA nominates Pranab Mukherjee for the highest office in India

against Mukherjee. In another setback to the BJP, sources said former Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa has affirmed support to Mukherjee. The BJP, which is yet to decide on, is sticking to its stand of not letting Mukherjee win uncontested. Abdul Kalam opts out Former president A P J Abdul Kalam is unlikely to contest for the post despite efforts by BJP to persuade him to enter the fray. Mr Kalam conveyed his reluctance to contest when BJP leader L K Advani called him thrice to persuade him to be the Opposition’s com-

mon candidate against Mukherjee, sources said. Mr Kalam, the predecessor to current President Pratibha Patil, told Mr Advani that his “conscience” is not permitting him to contest, sources said. Mr Kalam’s candidature is being pushed by Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee, who broke ranks with UPA to prop him. The former President has been insisting that he could consider entering the fray only if there was surety about his victory. Several opposition leaders reportedly talked to Mr Kalam over phone on Sunday to know about

his plans. BJP was more in favour of fielding Mr Kalam than former Lok Sabha Speaker P A Sangma, who is AIADMK Chief J Jayalalithaa and BJD head Naveen Patnaik’s choice. Earlier, Congress president and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi has named Mukherjee as its presidential candidate. This announcement comes after the UPA met with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to finalise its presidential candidate. "Pranab Mukherjee has a long and distinguished record of public service standing over five decades. There is broad support for his candidature," Gandhi said after the UPA meeting. Gandhi then appealed to all political parties, all members of parliament and members of state assemblies to support Mukherjee. Mukherjee was nominated by the Congress party in the face of opposition from Mamata Banerjee. Continued on page 26

The worst dreams of the Chinese contingent are coming true as the Saina Nehwal juggernaut is on a roll. The last two weeks could well be an indication of what China - the world super power of badminton - could expect at the Olympic Games next month. Saina is proving a tough nut to crack for the Chinese shuttlers as was evident at the Indonesian Open this week. The way the Hyderabadi is dismantling the supremacy of the Chinese is heart-warming for her billion fans while it is a heart-break for the other billion who are on the other side of the fence. On Sunday, the

Hyderabadi displayed nerves of steel as she snatched victory from the jaws of defeat to claim her maiden Indonesian Super Series Premier title in Jakarta. Saina's 13-21, 22-20, 21-19 win over China's Li Xuerui proves the diehard spirit of the 22-yearold, who saved two match points to script an incredible victory. The win was sweeter for Saina who seems to bloom in Jakarta - her favourite venue. She had earlier won the Super Series title in 2009 and 2010 before the tournament was upgraded to the Premier level in 2011. Continued on page 26





While the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) has selected Pranab Mukherjee as its candidate for the forthcoming presidential election, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), led by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), appears to be in a fix whether to support Mukherjee or to nominate its candidate. Shiv Sena, a part of the NDA, has already publicly said it would support Mukherjee for the highest office in the country. After the BJP's core committee meeting on Monday decided that contesting the poll was necessary, the party was put in a tight spot by the Shiv Sena, which not only favoured Mukherjee but urged other political parties too to back the finance minister. This is a second time the Shiv Sena has ditched the BJP. In the last presidential poll too, it had supported UPA candidate Pratibha Patil. Another major ally, Janata Dal-United is also reportedly not in favour of putting up a candidate






Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

one to one Keith Vaz MP with

Dr David Haslam, Chair of The National Obesity Forum Professor David Haslam is a full time GP with a special interest in obesity and cardiometabolic disease, Physician in Obesity Management, Luton & Dunstable Hospital, and Chair of the National Obesity Forum (NOF). The NOF is a charity whose aim is to increase awareness of obesity, diabetes and weight related illness, and improve their management. It provides educational material for clinicians, and also works alongside the Government and the Department of Health. He is Visiting Professor, Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen: Visiting Professor Chester University, and is the Obesity Specialist at 76 Harley St. He is a Board Member of ESCO (Experts on Severe and Complex Obesity) and of the charity Foundations, a Director of PCOS UK, a member of the Counterweight Board, and a Visiting Lecturer at Beds & Herts Postgraduate Medical School. He has articles widely published in journals and papers and speaks internationally on obesity and related diseases. His books include ‘Fat Gluttony and Sloth, obesity in Art, Literature and Medicine’, and ‘The Obesity Epidemic, and its Management’, both 2010. 1) Please tell us about the work you are currently doing for diabetes? 90% of patients with type 2 diabetes suffer from the condition because of excess weight. A South Asian only needs to achieve a Body Mass Index of 19 to have the same degree of cardiovascular risk that a white European has at BMI 25 due, amongst other things to genetic predisposition. So my personal clinical approach and that of the charity I Chair – the National Obesity Forum – is slanted towards weight management; to improve the health of the individual and the community by raising awareness of weight issues in the context of diabetes, cardiovascular disease and other chronic diseases, and improve their management in the clini-

cal environment. 2) What are your proudest achievements? My proudest achievements are to have guided the National Obesity forum through 12 years of successfully raising the profile of obesity and improving its management in clinical medicine, but also in the political sphere, and on behalf of the public. One of the NOF’s first stated ambitions was, and still is to reduce the health inequalities relating to obesity, referring to ethnicity and deprivation. I’m proud that this work, as well as by position with the Counterweight weight management team, has been recognised by the honour of Visiting Professor at two Universities. 3) Please tell us about your current position?

My current role, first and foremost is as a full time General Practitioner, in a small rural dispensing practice in Hertfordshire. I have many other roles, but each one’s validity depends upon my seeing patients on Monday morning and throughout the week with common dayto-day illnesses and stresses. When meeting Consultants and Politicians in the UK, in the EU, and Internationally, including visits to the White House to liaise with Michelle Obama’s team, my gravitas depends solely upon the fact that I see patients intimately, day-in, dayout, therefore there is nothing theoretical; all practical, hands on experience. I use this experience to enable me to be a Bariatric Physician at a major surgery unit at Luton and Dunstable hospital, Chair of the National Obesity Forum, immediate former Chair of Foundations – a charity dedicated to laying the foundations of healthy lifestyle to avoid eating disorders and obesity – and to teach across the world about obesity, diabetes and heart disease.

4) What has been the biggest obstacle in your career? The single biggest struggle and obstacle has been the absurd political interference with medical educational initiatives. There is an argument –although a flimsy one - that GPs shouldn’t be allowed to accept pens from pharmaceutical representatives, in case that pen is only able to write a prescription for one drug only. However, the fact that ABPI have denied the opportunity for GPs and nurses to experience genuine educational input in order to improve their management of patients, and therefore their patient’s health is ridiculous. There will be conferences across the Globe in the next 10 years, which will revolutionise management of obesity and diabetes. Practitioners across the globe will manage diabetes better because of them. However the UK will be stuck in the doldrums, providing poorerthan-average healthcare, because clinicians will have been prohibited to attend the very same conferences which have informed international physicians to provide better care for their patients. A small group of UK clinicians was privileged enough to attend the ADA in San Francisco in 2009. The information disseminated there instituted seismic changes in management across the globe, in particular relating to ethnic minorities. The UK missed out! 5) Who has been the biggest influence on your career to date? Professor George Bray

Coplands Nursing Home opens a new wing The Coplands Nursing Home in Wembley opened a new wing for the Asian elderly last week. The Chief Executive of Lifestyle Care Mr Ramesh Sachdev and the Founder of Lifestyle Care Mrs Pratibha Sachdev welcomed guests from the community to mark the occasion. The guest of honour was Lord Dolar Popat of Harrow who officially opened the new wing of the home. Coplands Nursing Home which has a capacity for just over 70 people has been completely renovated since being acquired by Lifestyle Care in November 2011. Since the

fer from dementia, home’s reacquisipeople who require tion one of the palliative care, as main aims of the well as young, home has been to physically disabled fit in with the patients. diverse nature of The Home is Brent and renowned in the Harrow in order community for its to accommodate designated Asian the area’s resiunit which caters dents more effecfor the large tively. Lifestyle Gujarati populaCare has also tion of the area. heavily invested The Home has in the training a designated vegeand development tarian kitchen of its staff to realwhere Indian food ly raise the standards in the level is prepared daily Lord Dolar Popat and Mr Ramesh Sachdev and all staff in the of care offered. unit are trained to The Home proto cater for; the elderly communicate with vides a wide range of servand frail, people who sufpatients in Gujarati. ices with designated units

specialises in obesity and diabetes at the Pennington Biomedical Research centre in Baton Rouge, Florida. Now aged 80, he was one of the first people to “throw away a promising career” – according to his colleagues at the time – in order to specialise in obesity. He is the lead researcher in many landmark trials such as the Diabetes Prevention Programme and the look AHEAD trial, as is widely admired and respected internationally not just for his research and clinical work, but also his warm personality and broad grin. I only got to meet George three years ago after an e-mail debate between us about a reference to the great English Physician Thomas Sydenham I’d written in an article, revealed a mutual interest in the history of obesity and diabetes. Since then he and I have set up the Cheyne Society dedicated to the history of the conditions. 6) What is the best thing about your current role? The best aspect is the interest which is shown in obesity and diabetes by the general public, the medical profession, politicians and the media. A day doesn’t go by without a news story hitting the headlines – albeit often sensationalistic rubbish – and this is reflected by a growing interest by Government and the Department of Health on prevention and management aspects. As a member of the Obesity Strategy Review group I can witness, and to some extent help mould these changes. 7) And the worst? The worst is the fight for funding, as a Charity struggling against the current economic climate, and against increasingly prohibitive Government regulations and ABPI rules on Industry involvement. Katarine Parr, the Regional Director for Lifestyle Care added that, “the essence of this specially designed unit is to ensure that patients do not lose touch with their roots, particularly at one of the most vulnerable times of their life.” Lord Popat congratulated Lifestyle Care for investing in the home’s refurbishment since its takeover and commented on its positive impact on the community, “a home is only as good as its staff – and furthermore this home today is a mirror image of Brent and Harrow, the area it serves and is an integral part of the community.” Whilst opening the new unit Lord Popat went

8) What are your long term goals? As a clinician, and as Chair NOF my ambition is to reduce the burden of obesity, diabetes and other associated noncommunicable diseases amongst my own patients, but also in the UK and Internationally. We seem to be witnessing a levelling off of obesity levels in children in the UK, which is extremely encouraging, but it is levelling off at much too high a level, and there is a massive amount of work still to be done. 9) If you were Prime Minister, what one thing would you change? 1. I’d put a wind machine on every electricity pylon and every motorway road lamp in the UK, and I’d ask engineering businesses who have become defunct thanks to current government policies to make the wind turbines, thereby saving their livelihoods. 2. The NHS is a huge asset. It is the jewel in the crown, according to the Government. However, its importance actually lies in the wastage that it engenders. A reduction in form filling would free the NHS from vast expenses. 10) If you were marooned on a desert island, which historical figures would you like to spend your time with and why? Hippocrates and Galen, despite living centuries apart had a lot in common. Both were physicians of great renown, both had a massive influence upon their peers, and advanced and improved medical practice and techniques, and were influential and admired for centuries after their death. Both men, however were knowledgeable in a wide range of other spheres, including politics, philosophy, history and religion. Most importantly both were admired and looked up to. on to outline the importance of all the stakeholders involved, “from all the staff, management, doctors, social workers and the nurses it is important that we give residents the care they deserve with respect and dignity.” During the opening ceremony Lord Popat also had the opportunity to meet many of the home’s residents including Mrs Radhaben Rathod, the home’s oldest resident aged 102. Following his tour with Ramesh Sachdev, Lord Popat said, “it is such a humbling experience to meet the residents and their good health and comfort at such an age is testimony of how well they are looked after.”

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012


Greek vote averts European disaster On a pivotal night for European politics and Greece's survival, Greek voters showed their support for the country's continued membership of the Eurozone. The pro-bailout New Democracy party led by Antonis Samaras secured a narrow victory in the election. The result has given a temporary relief for the world over, especially to Eurozone. If the Syriza party had won it would have been a disaster for the Eurozone with its threatened abrogation of its membership from the European currency union. Still the people have to undergo a lot of hardship. The new government has to take some harsh measures to avail 130 billion EU/IMF bailout to keep the country from bankruptcy. An official projection released by the interior ministry showed New Democracy taking 29.5 per cent (129 seats) narrowly beating their leftwing rivals, Syriza, who took 26.9% (71 seats). The pro-bailout socialist party, Pan-Hellenic Socialist Movement (Pasok) finished in third place with 12.3% of the votes (33 seats).The victorious party is awarded a 50-seat bonus in parliament and one possible scenario could see the pro-bailout parties, New Democracy and Pasok form a coalition government thus giving them a majority with 162 seats in the 300-strong parliament. The result, however, exposed a deeply divided society, which could leave an emboldened Syriza party leading new protests against a coalition governing with significantly less than 50 per cent of the electorate’s support. Syriza's charismatic leader, Alexis Tsipras has categorically refused to participate in any coalition with New Democracy and he looks set to become a strong anti-austerity voice in the opposing ranks. In his victory speech, Mr Samaras labelled the election results as “a victory for all of Europe.” In spite

of this, the imminent challenge for Greece's political parties is to form a functioning government and appoint a leader. The people have to undergo a lot of hardships. They have to pay the price for the blunders of their earlier rulers. They should be ready to further lower their standard of living to remain afloat than to sink into abyss. This rule is applicable to all the nations, especially those who are fallen into deep recession. The lesson is, never try to live beyond your means, otherwise if not today, tomorrow you have to pay a heavy price for over spending. The US while congratulating Greeks on its elections urged the new leaders to promptly form a coalition in order to prevent further economic chaos. “We hope this election will lead quickly to the formation of a new government that can make timely progress on the economic challenges facing the Greek people. As President Obama and other world leaders have said, we believe that it is in all our interests for Greece to remain in the euro area while respecting its commitment to reform. Going forward, we will engage Greece in the spirit of partnership that has guided our alliance and the friendship between our people." In a joint statement, Presidents Herman Van Rompuy and José Manuel Barroso hailed the result of the election. “The Greek people have spoken. We fully respect their democratic choice. We are hopeful that the election results will allow a government to be formed quickly. Today, we salute the courage and resilience of the Greek citizens, fully aware of the sacrifices which are demanded from them to redress the Greek economy and build new, sustainable growth for the country. We will continue to stand by Greece as a member of the EU family and of the Euro area.”

Black-marketing in Olympics tickets a shame The Olympics is the world’s foremost sports competition. And this year, the Olympics will held in London from 27 July to 12 August, 2012. The preparations are in full swing and everything is moving as per schedule. UK is doing everything to make it one of the grandest events. But there is a black-spot of lately. It has given way to blackmailing of tickets, which is not right and needs immediate action. If this is not done immediately, it gives an opportunity to unscrupulous elements to make money. This should not be allowed at any cost. The culprits should be severely punished, so that in future such incidents won’t happen. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has launched an investigation into allegations published by the Sunday Times which claimed that 27 representatives of 54 countries were prepared to breach regulations on ticket sales. Reporters from the Sunday Times went undercover after discovering “that national Olympic committees were selling chunks of their official ticket allocations to international touts.” The numbers are truly staggering with “AA” blue riband tickets being sold for up to £6,000. For the more popular events, tickets were said to be marked up by ten times their face value. Denis Oswald, a senior member of the IOC, asserted: “These people should no longer belong to

the Olympic movement.” He went on to claim that “We will ask for the documents and the tapes from the Sunday Times. If this is confirmed then steps must be taken. For me (banning them from distributing tickets in the future) would not be enough. These people should no longer belong to the Olympic movement. “People were aware they were breaking the rules. It is why it is very serious, especially people in situations where they have responsibilities for their own national sport and are prepared to break the rules.” Countries embroiled in the scandal include China, Lithuania and Serbia. A member of the Greek Olympics Committee has also levelled an accusation at Lord Coe, chairman of the London Organising Committee, Locog. The member claimed that an individual claimed to have “pulled strings” and “persuaded” Lord Coe to give Greece more tickets under the pretext that demand had surpassed supply. Locog denies the claim and said, “Rules and regulations for selling London 2012 tickets to international fans are clear and unambiguous. National Olympic Committees and their authorised ticket sellers sign a contract with Locog agreeing to specific terms and conditions. Since IOC has launched an investigation into the allegations, we will support them in any way we can. None of the tickets in question came from the allocation to the British public.”

After much dilly-dallying the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) has chosen Pranab Mukherjee as its presidential nominee. West Bengal chief minister and UPA partner Mamata Banerjee is, in a way, responsible for Mukherjee clinching choice. She has opposed the name of Mukherjee and instead suggested the names of former President APJ Abdul Kalam, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee. Being stonewalled every step of the government and the manner in which she sought to overturn Mukherjee’s presidential nomination has galvanised the Congress into coming back swinging. It needs to do more of the same, for now, the obscurantist outreach of Mamata has been exposed. A non-political leader like Kalam would have been a better choice, but now Mukherjee has been chosen, the government should try to avoid a contest for the post. Mukherjee is eminently qualified for the position. Not only does he have good relationships and command respect across the political spectrum, his mastery of the Constitution and political system is unquestionable. Those skills will be needed as India approaches a potentially rocky era of fragmented politics. Equally welcome would be Mukherjee’s departure from the finance ministry. With the country in the grip of stagflation, he posted a lacklustre budget when a big-bang one was called for. To compound matters

he misjudged the current economic situation badly by proposing retrospective taxes on foreign merger and acquisition deals going back half a century. At a time when foreign capital was in any case predisposed to leaving India, his measure all but delivered the coup de grace to business sentiment. Now that Congress has broken out of Mamata’s grip, it must press home its advantage and get decision-making moving again. In particular, two steps must be taken in tandem. First, the prime minister should take over the finance ministry himself and drive economic reforms like he did the nuclear deal. Or he should hand over the post to a young and dynamic minister free of the baggage of the licence raj. A few determined moves – such as opening up the retail to FDI, reforming pensions and insurance, deregulating fuel prices and reversing the retrospective taxes – will kickstart the sluggish economy and send business confidence soaring again. Second, the Congress should reach out across the aisle and propose a deal to the BJP. It should get the BJP’s assent to Mukherjee’s presidency, thus ensuring that he emerges as a consensus president – and in return declare its support for anyone the BJP nominates for vice-presidency. Such a bold move will generate a spirit of bipartisanship, urgently necessary for the kind of give-and-take that can end today’s policy paralysis.

Time for Manmohan to take some decisive steps


Thought for the Week

An intellectual is someone whose mind watches itself. - Albert Camus

Two H.S. Ranas !!! Your headline in last week’s Asian Voice “Convicted Sex Offender Joins Prince Charles on Royal Barge” needs some explanation. Harbinder Singh Rana has been associated with the Memorial Gates, the memorial to the Indians, Africans and West Indians who served in two world wars, for a number of years now and when I first heard that a Harbinder Singh Rana had been convicted of a sex offence I made enquiries to make sure it wasn’t the person who was on our council. Strange as it may seem

there are two Harbinder Singh Ranas, the one who was convicted of a sex offence and indeed the Harbinder Singh Rana who was with Prince Charles. He is the originator of the Sikh Heritage Trail and is very well respected by the community and I would like to categorically state that this is not the Harbinger Singh Rana who served a jail sentence. I hope that you will make sure that your report is put right. Baroness Shreela Flather (House of Lords)

Homelessness in India I was hitherto under the impression that Mr Alpesh Patel ( Political Sketchbook ( A/V 9/06 ) may be a full blooded Englishman born and brought up in this country and like Mr. Michael Winner “ enjoying the fruits of British Wealth” I was mistaken; and I am pleasantly surprised that he is a full blooded Indian who like other great thinkers before him recognises India’s “riches

beyond possessions.” I hope and wish that with the help of his experience, talent, high profile contacts etc he could guide his countrymen and show them how to deploy such “wealth beyond measure” in alleviating malnutrition, abject poverty, rampant corruption and exploitation that appear to be eating away the very fabric of this great ancient civilization. G Mistry

Shebby Singh appointed as Rovers director Blackburn owners Venky's have appointed former Malaysia defender Shebby Singh, pictured, as their new director of football. Singh, has consistently worked alongside the likes of John Dykes, Andrew Leci and Steve McMahon during the various television programmes focusing on the wekeend's matches and offered his insight into the players' perspective.

Sister admits silent phone calls A sister of Shafilea Ahmed has admitted in court to making silent phone calls to a trial witness. But Mevish Ahmed denied she was trying to intimidate her friend Shahin Munir, to whom the prosecution say she wrote letters about Shafilea's death. Ms Ahmed, 21, told Chester Crown Court the silent calls last week were a joke. Shafilea's parents Iftikhar, 52, and Farzana, 49, deny murdering their daughter by suffocating her at their home in Warrington, Cheshire, in 2003. Speaking on the second day of her evidence, Ms Ahmed said she did not regret writing letters

Murdered: Shafilea Ahmed

that had only recently been shown to police by Ms Munir which the prosecution says were "letters that you wrote to your friend about your sister's death. It's just a story, now it's being taken out of context," she said. Continuing her evidence, Ms Ahmed denied she was covering up for her parents.



Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Mumbai music and bustling bazaar make Indian Summer

Leicester's Cultural Quarter was buzzing with activity over the weekend thanks to an Indian festival. The second Indian Summer event saw Orton Square transformed into a Mumbai bazaar. There were stalls selling everything from food to clothing and jewellery on Saturday and Sunday, as well as dancing and tuk tuk rides. Scores of people gathered in the square yesterday to watch performances by dancers from Nupur Arts Dance Academy, from Belgrave. Shreya Vadnerkar, Shree Savani and Reema Mistry, all 13, were among the dancers. Shree, of Quorn, said: "We do a lot of performances but not many outside. It's nice to be able to promote Indian dancing at a festival like this and

show people what we do." Reema, of Thurmaston, said: "It's a really good festival, there's a real community atmosphere." Visitor Aanchel Bhandari, enjoyed fresh coconut milk while watching the dancers. The 24-year-old, from Nottingham, who was in Leicester to visit her family in Stoneygate, said: "There's lots of bits of culture being shown that probably people don't hear about, unless they go to India. I went earlier this year and I think there's quite a good representation here." Sisters Shona and Jiya Parmar, from Belgrave, were enjoying the event with mum and dad Sonia and Kailesh. Shona, seven, said: "We saw the dancing and it was very good and brilliant."

City supermarket worker emptied safe of £35,000 A torture victim who was granted asylum in the UK has been given a 16-month jail term for stealing more than £35,000 from his employer. S a y a n t h a n Selvaratnam (32), who is originally from Sri Lanka, stole £35,552 in cash from a safe at the Sainsbury's petrol station, in Belgrave Road, Leicester, on April 1. Having pleaded guilty before city magistrates last month, he was sentenced at Leicester Crown Court yesterday. William Falshaw, prosecuting, told the court Selvaratnam, of Catherine Street, Belgrave, Leicester, had been a team manager at the filling station but due to "issues of dishonesty and CCTV tampering" had recently been moved to the store's bakery. "He had pretty detailed knowledge of security arrangements in the petrol station. On April 1, at 9.45am, staff opened the safe at the petrol station expecting to find £35,000 from the previous day's takings but what they found was an empty safe." CCTV film showed a

man entering the shop at 2.10am and taking money from the safe. Records showed the alarm had been set at 10.09pm the previous day, turned off at 2.12am and reset two minutes later. To do that, the thief would have had to enter the management office and remove a key fob security device. Suspicion fell on Selvaratnam and he was arrested the same afternoon. When police searched his then home, in Fairfax Close, Northfields, Leicester, Mr Falshaw said they found a total of £37,630 – including the £35,500 from the safe – hidden in the panel of his bathtub. "The defendant was interviewed and initially denied all knowledge of the crime until told that the money had been found at his home address," Mr Falshaw said. He said aggravated features included the planning and breach of trust involved. In mitigation, Steven Newcombe, said Selvaratnam, a Tamil, was granted asylum in Britain in 2002 as a refugee.

Photo Courtesy: Leicester Mercury

Dancers entertaining the crowds

Family pay tribute to loving dad who died after assault in Leicester street

The children of a man who has died a week after being assaulted in a Leicester street have paid tribute to their "really good dad". P o n n u t h u r a i Nimalaraja, known as Nimal, died in hospital on Saturday, a week after he was found seriously injured at the junction of Gipsy Lane and Northfield Road, in Northfields, Leicester. Detectives are treating the death as murder. Speaking on Father's Day, last Sunday, to the Leicester Mercury, his son Diluxshan and daughter Leyana said they were devastated. Diluxshan, 13, said: "I wouldn't want this to ever happen to anyone else. I really miss him. It is Father's Day today and I am so sad that he isn't here. He was a really kind and loving person." Sister Leyana, nine, said: "He was a really good dad. He was always very helpful and he played with me all the time." Mr Nimalaraja, 41, who lived with his wife Mathanika and children in Essex Road, near to where he was found, moved to the UK from Germany with his family about four years ago. He worked as a kitchen assistant at Barnsdale Hall Hotel, in Rutland. Mrs Nimalaraja, who was too upset to speak, was comforted by dozens of friends and relatives at home over the weekend. The couple would have celebrated their 15th wedding anniversary next Monday. One man, who said he was paying tribute on behalf of all of Mr Nimalaraja's many friends, He said: "Before he moved to this country, he had been the subject of torture at the hands of government forces." He said his client had been diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder and that Selvaratnam had turned his life around after moving from London to Leicester, where he married and had found a good job. Mr Newcombe said: "You have to ask yourself, what's going on here – this man knew the garage was covered by CCTV. He would have known suspicion would fall on him. He doesn't appear to be in dire financial difficulty – all he succeeded in doing was digging himself into a huge hole for which the consequences to him have been enormous. "He has lost his good name, his job and his home." Sentencing him, Judge Sylvia De Bertodano took into account Selvaratnam's mental state, guilty plea and previous good character. The £37,630 will be paid to Sainsbury's.

Ponnuthurai and Mathanika Nimalaraja with Diluxshan and Leyana Mr Nimalaraja

so did not want to single himself out by giving his name, said: "He was a very kind person. He was Tamil and all of the Tamil community and friends and family miss him very much. He had so many friends and we all just feel unbearable sadness." Details of Mr Nimalaraja's funeral have not been confirmed but hundreds of people are expected to attend. Among them will be staff at Sellappa Grocery, a shop in Gipsy Lane, which Mr Nimalaraja had visited before the assault. Owner Sellappa Sivasothy, 48, and his daughter Yali, 17, paid tribute. Miss Sivasothy said: "We knew him as a customer initially but then he became a family friend. He was a really, really nice guy. He would always pop in and ask how you were, he was just very caring. Everyone around here knew him and we just can't believe what's happened." The teenager said Mr Nimalaraja had been in the

shop watching football on a laptop computer with one of her colleagues and there had been some trouble outside. Mr Sivasothy said: "We're just so upset. We really thought he would get better. We all hope the police find the people responsible." Officers were called to the scene at about 11.04pm on Saturday, June 9, by the ambulance service. Mr Nimalaraja was taken to Leicester Royal Infirmary and later to the Queen's Medical Centre in Nottingham, where he died on Saturday morning. Detective Chief Inspector Matt Hewson, from the East Midlands Special Operations Unit major crime team, said on Saturday: "The victim of the assault was, sadly, pronounced dead this morning. Although we have a number of people arrested as part of this investigation, we are keen to speak to other witnesses to gain as much information as possible. This is now being

treated as a murder investigation so I would urge anyone with information to call us immediately. If you were in Gipsy Lane between 10.30pm and 11.15pm that night, you may have witnessed the assault and possibly the events that led up to it. If so, please don't hesitate to call us – it isn't too late to help." Councillors for Charnwood ward, which covers Northfields, said the incident had shocked residents. Councillor Paul Newcombe said: "This has come as a real shock to the community. All I can say is our thoughts and condolences are with the family of the deceased." Lord Mayor and fellow ward Charnwood councillor Abdul Osman said: "I am really shocked and I offer my sympathies to his family. I've asked for a meeting with police to discuss residents' concerns in relation to anti-social behaviour in the area." Terry Herbert, a member of Morton and Northfields Tenants and Residents Association, said: "What happened to this man is appalling. When you can't go about your business without looking over your shoulder, it's just not right." Anyone with any information about the incident is asked to contact Leicestershire police by calling 101. Six boys – one aged 15, one 13 and four aged 14 – and a girl aged 14 were arrested as part of the initial investigation into the assault and have since been released on police bail.

You're never too old to teach A retired teacher has been using the internet to teach children living in slums in India. Val Almond, a 66-yearold retired secondary school history teacher, of Loughborough, has been spending a day a week in front of her computer, making Chinese lanterns from newspapers, reading out children's stories, talking about the weather, what she cooked for breakfast or even explaining the British postal system. She uses Skype – online video calling – to teach and mentor groups of primary and secondary school students living in a slum in Hyderabad. "It has taken me back to what I enjoyed about teaching – getting kids excited about learning and trying to make it fun. I just love working with kids. I still loved my job when I packed it in." Mrs Almond, who taught at Longslade School in Birstall until she retired in 2006, is one of a number of men and

Dr Sugata Mitra

women in Britain and other countries who are giving lessons in life skills and academic subjects to underprivileged children in India. It is part of a scheme called SOLE – Self Organised Learning Environments – started in May 2009 by Dr Sugata Mitra, professor of educational technology at Newcastle University. The idea arose from his Hole in the Wall initiative, which began installing basic PCs in Indian slums in 1999. He was astonished at the speed with which the children, with no technological experience, mastered the machines and taught one

another how to use them. Mrs Almond first heard about the scheme through an advert in the Guardian appealing to "British grandmothers" to spare an hour of their time, over Skype, to talk to children in the slums and villages of India. Suneeta Kulkarni, an educational psychologist who manages the project in India, said: "I could see difference in the children after just one session." Professor Mitra said: "Within days of advertising, I had more than 200 volunteers, men and women of all ages, many of them retired teachers, all willing to give their time free. It was, to me, a wonderfully energetic, very British, response." The programme, which was operating in 12 schools and play clubs in Hyderebad and Pune, is in need of further funding. Prof Mitra said the project needed further cash and organisation in India and he was trying to see what he could do about it.

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012




Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Sneezing taxi driver walks free after death crash By Spriha Srivastava

LIFF begins The 3rd Edition of the London Indian Film Festival has started and the entire event is a feast for the senses, featuring circuses, mobsters, cockfights, transvestites and kite-flying, set in some of the world’s greatest cities and some never before seen virgin locations. With funding from Film London and supported by the BFI and BAFTA, and sponsored by Western Union, the festival brings to UK audiences a selection of cutting edge films from some of the hottest independent talents from India, UK, US and Bangladesh. The UK Premiere of Anurag Kashyap’s Gangs of Wasseypur, right after its full house screenings at the Cannes Directors’ Fortnight, opens the festival, at Cineworld, Haymarket on 20 June. British director Danny Boyle has cited Kashyap’s Black Friday as an inspiration for Slumdog Millionaire. The film is produced by Viacom 18. The festival hosts World Premieres of two British films. Tooting Broadway featuring E l i z a b e t h Henstridge,who has been touted the next Keira Knightley, from her beginnings in the TV series Hollyoaks, to her new status in Hollywood, where she will be seen in the upcoming horror film by the Butcher Brothers’, The Thompsons. Arjun and Alison has a storyline with parallels to the murder of British teenager, Stephen Lawrence and is a film that tackles racism in British society. The festival will go on to showcase the work of the new wave of independent South Asian and British Asian filmmakers, including a director only named as Q, Rajan Khosa and Srijit Mukherji, whose thrill a minute whodunit Baishey Srabon (Seventh August) will close the festival on July 3, alongside a Q&A with its beautiful actress, Raima Sen. The festival will stretch city wide, in venues like the Tate Modern, Cineworld O2 and ICA for the very first time and returning venues like the BFI Southbank, Nehru Centre, Watermans and Cineworlds Trocadero, Wood Green and

A taxi driver who claimed he was having a sneezing fit before he crashed into the back of a car, killing the driver, walked free from court last Friday. Phillip Parker wept as a jury acquitted him of causing death by careless driving. The 38-year-old black cab driver, of Fir Tree Grove, Chatham, was driving home from working in London in the early hours of New Year's Day last year when he crashed into the back of Malkit Khatkar's Vauxhall Vectra. Mr Khatkar, 70, sustained serious spinal injuries in the accident on the A2 at Wilmington and died two weeks later. Mr Parker told how he had started sneezing repeatedly - seven or eight times in a row - and was suddenly aware of something in front of him.

Prosecutor Anthony Prosser told Maidstone Crown Court Mr Parker would have had at least 30 seconds of visibility of the car in front and plenty of time to brake. There were no independent witnesses to the crash, which happened at about 5.20am on a long straight stretch of the coast-bound carriageway. The Vectra was struck from the rear and spun around. The driver's seat was reclined and Mr Khatkar had to be cut out. He was taken to Darent Valley Hospital and then transferred to Stoke Mandeville in A y l e s b u r y , Buckinghamshire, where he died on January 16. Mr Prosser said it was not possible to say how fast Mr Khatkar was travelling and his car could

even have been stationary at the time of the collision. Mr Parker, who suffered a broken collarbone, said his speed was about 50-60mph. Mr Prosser said if sneezing did not explain the cause, it could have been lack of concentration or tiredness. Mr Parker, who denied the charge, said in a police interview of his sneezing: "It didnt well up, it just bang - happened." He said in evidence: "It was just one after another." Asked by Mr Prosser how he missed an object in the road directly ahead of him, he replied: "All I can tell you is I had a sneezing fit and the car was there. It looked like it was stationary and I went into the back of it. I did brake." He denied being tired.

Three immigration court judges found to rule in favour of foreign criminals

Poster of Gangs of Wasseypur

Wandsworth. “Delhi in A Day” engages the British writer of All God’s Creatures, Billy Fox, as the storyline consultant. US film A Decent Arrangement stars Adam Laupus (Law & Order) and Shabana Azmi (Kathyrn Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty, Mira Nair’s The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Deepa Mehta’s Midnight’s Children). Festival Director Cary Rajinder Sawhney says: “As part of the festival we are undertaking several exciting new commissions, mixing film and arts, one of these is Gandu Circus a live Jungle- rap rock performance by Kolkata based rapper and revolutionary film director, Q. This performance will be performed on stage at BFI Southbank on 21st June after a screening of Q’s film Gandu, a compelling story of a young Bengali teenager addicted to rap and sexual fantasies. Expect some special guests on stage including Asian Dub Foundation’s Steve Chandra Savale, joining Q for this one-off, unforgettable performance!” Glamour, dancing and fabulous saris; Queens! Destiny of Dance is set in a palace

owned by head transvestite Ammu, played by Seema Biswas (of Bandit Queen fame). Pride London will be cross promoting this event. A definite family favourite will be Busan International Film Festival audience award winner Dekh Indian Circus with Q&A by Tannishtha Chatterjee (BIFA nominated for Brick Lane). London Indian Film Festival is supported by Film London’s Cultural Film Exhibition Fund through the National Lottery on behalf of the BFI. Partners include Arts Council of England, Cineworld Cinemas, Western Union, Incredible India, Grange Hotels, Skillset, The Nehru Centre, BollySpice,, Zee TV, Sanona and Eastern Eye, amongst others. The Satyajit Ray Foundation’s Short Film Competition has joined the Festival with the winning filmmaker receiving a £1,000 Award on 3 July at Cineworld, Haymarket. All audiences at the festival will be encouraged to vote for this year’s Western Union Audience Award and the winning feature film will be announced at the close of the festival.

Let us know what you think. Email Spriha at

An investigation into decisions by the country’s highest immigration court has revealed how some judges rule far more often than others in favour of offenders seeking to avoid deportation. While one judge backed claims by 11 criminals and ruled against only two, another ruled against all nine criminals whose cases he heard. Among cases heard by the three judges who allowed the most appeals Richard McKee, Kate Eshun and Jonathan Perkins - one saw a man permitted to stay in Britain after serving a nine-year sentence for manslaughter. The killer won his case in front of Miss Eshun, partly because of his right to a “family life” with his brother who was also jailed for the same killing. Others among the 26 allowed to stay in the country included a man who punched an 84-yearold Alzheimer’s sufferer in the face, and a motorist who killed a woman while driving at 60mph in a builtup area. The findings indicate that plans by Theresa May, the Home Secretary, to crack down on the way foreign criminals use human rights to avoid being deported risk being undermined in the courts. MPs will this week be asked to back the new proposals, which will see judges issued with new guidelines saying that only in “exceptional” cases should criminals be able to avoid deportation by citing their “right to a private and family life” under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. But lawyers claim the Home Secretary’s plans lack teeth and will result in a cascade of legal challenges and delays. The analysis showed

Nuno Jesus Ramos

Mr McKee, 64, a senior immigration judge, heard 13 cases between June last year and last month. In 11 he ruled in favour of the criminal bringing the appeal, with just two going in the Home Office’s favour. Those he allowed to stay in Britain included Wabi Longange, from the Democratic Republic of Congo, a failed asylum seeker who caused the death by careless driving of a woman passenger. Miss Eshun, another senior immigration judge,

heard 13 cases during the period, in which she ruled in the criminal’s favour nine times - including two on the grounds that they were European Union citizens - and in the Home Office’s favour four times. Criminals she let stay in Britain included Nuno Jesus Ramos, 26, a Portugese national who the Home Office tried to deport for his role in the manslaughter of 47-yearold Joao DaCosta Mitendele, who was robbed in his own home, tortured and left to suffocate. A spokesman for the Judicial Office said: “Judges make a decision in each case according to the evidence before them. They apply the law and the developing jurisprudence binding on them at the time of the case. Where either party is aggrieved with a decision of the Upper Tribunal there is a right of appeal.”

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Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Six arrested over Copland Community School fraud have bail extended Sir Alan Davies, a former headmaster at the school, who was knighted for services to education was also arrested and accused, along with former colleagues of defrauding a Wembley school out of more than £2.5million. Sir Alan Davies, who was honoured in 2000, is one of six defendants charged in connection with an investigation into the alleged misappropriation of funds at Copland Community School, a foundation school in Cecil Avenue, Wembley. The 65-year-old and five other staff members and governors appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday 12 June accused of conspiracy to defraud Brent Council of in excess of £2.5m between April 2003 and June 2009. It is claimed the six abused the financial controls and unlawfully devolved decisions on pay to a group of governors – Davies, former chairman of the governing body, Dr Indravadan Patel (also known as Dr IP Patel) and his deputy Martin Day – without the authority or consent of the governing body. It is also alleged the six arranged for ‘excessive and inappropriate pay-

Sir Alan Davies

Dr IP Patel

Dr Richard Evans

ments’ to be made of the following: n More than £900,000 to Davies n More than £600,000 to deputy headteacher Dr Richard Evans n More than £193,000 to former bursar Columbus Udokoro n More than £135,000 to the former assistant bursar, Michelle McKenzie The charge alleged the payments were ‘bonuses which were not justified or proper’ for ‘purported work’ on new school development; for working Saturdays in excess of 52 for the academic year; and additional payments to Davies, Evans and others for purportedly covering the duties of an absent senior staff member when those duties were being carried out by another.

Davies is further charged with money laundering by allegedly transferring £270,490 from a NatWest bank account to a Spanish bank account in March 2008. Davies, Udokoro and McKenzie (also known as Michelle Bishop), are charged with conspiracy to commit false accounting by falsifying the payroll and withholding staff salary details between April 2003 and June 2009. Dr Richard Evans a former deputy head at the school was dismissed last year for gross misconduct, and has been working as a maths teacher at Mill Hill County High School since September last year. In the 2001 and 2005 General Elections he

stood as the Tory party candidate for the Hendon constituency. His wife Lesley was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to defraud and theft. Davies, Evans, Patel and Day are further charged with fraud by abuse of position between January 18, 2007 and June 1, 2009 by failing to safeguard the financial interests of the school. Davies, of Grants Close, Mill Hill; Patel, 72, of Green Lane, Stanmore; Day, 57, of Evans Court, Halstead, Essex; Evans, 55, of Barnet Road, Barnet; Udokoro, 61, of Whitton Drive, Greenford, and Bishop, 52, of Shaldon Drive, Ruislip, have had their bail pushed back until March 2013 instead of September this year.


Olympic tickets sold on black market The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has launched an investigation into allegations published by the Sunday Times which claimed that 27 representatives of 54 countries were prepared to breach regulations on ticket sales. Reporters from the Sunday Times went undercover after discovering “that national Olympic committees were selling chunks of their official ticket allocations to international touts.” The numbers are truly staggering with “AA” blue riband tickets being sold for up to £6,000. For the more popular events, tickets were said to be marked up by ten times their face value. Denis Oswald, a senior member of the International Olympic Committee, asserted: “These people should no longer belong to the Olympic movement.” He went on to claim that “we will ask for the documents and the tapes, whatever is existing from the sunday Times. If this is confirmed then sanctions must be taken. For me (banning them from distributing tickets in the future) would not be enough. These people should no longer belong to the

Olympic movement. “People were aware they were breaking the rules. It is why it is very serious, especially people in situations where they have responsibilities for their own national sport and are prepared to break

the rules. There are probably differences between the different cases and you cannot treat everybody the same. But, depending on the result of the inquiry, there could be a sanction that people are no longer accepted in the Olympic movement and therefore they should have no link with sport in their own country.” Countries embroiled in the scandal include China, Lithuania and Serbia. A member of the Greek Olympics Committee has also levelled an accusation at Lord Coe, chairman of the London Organising Committee, Locog. The individual claimed to have “pulled strings” and “persuaded” Lord Coe to give Greece more tickets under the pretext that demand had surpassed supply. Locog denies the claim.


Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Dee Katwa

Midland Voice Contact: Dhiren on 07970 911 386 or

Asian Achievers honoured An entrepreneur from Coventry, a top rank policeman and a veteran diversity tsar were among award winners at a ceremony in Manchester last Friday. I was among the over 300 guests. The proud parents and 74-year-old grandmother of Riz Navsarka from Coventry stood up and clapped rapturously as he went on stage to collect his Young Entrepreneur of the Year trophy. Riz, 27, started his business MesmerEyes Cosmetics whilst at Coventry University and turned a £200 university loan into a multi-million pound company in less than five years. In 2010, Riz was award recipient of this same title at our Asian Achievers Awards. Also honoured on the night

News in Brief Stop-search ‘imbalance’ West Midlands Police stopped and searched a higher proportion of black, Asian and mixed-race people than whites, according to a new paper from the Equality and Human Rights Commission. In defence, the force’s assistant chief constable Garry Forsyth said: “All stops and searches are conducted ethically, impartially and objectively. The force is not complacent about the potential mistrust that can arise from perceived discrimination in the way the powers are applied.”

Travellers ignore advice

Winner: Ashit Kumar Sinha

were Atul Pathak, one of the UK’s most successful franchise entrepreneurs. He established his first McDonalds franchise in 2003 and today runs a

Coming soon: Citizen Khan Citizen Khan, a new TV sitcom, is soon to be screened on BBC One. It’s a family comedy set in the capital of British Pakistan – Sparkhill, Birmingham - a city with a one million population, of which 10% are of Pakistani origin. Created by Asian Network presenter and friend of the elite, Adil Ray, the character, Mr Khan is a larger than life character, a proud man with strong opinions and big dreams, which usually lead to even bigger problems. The challenges he faces are those of many families – how to make ends meet, keep his wife and daughters happy and impress the neighbours. Things would be so much easier if everyone just listened to him and followed his lead, but his family and friends usually have other ideas. The cast includes Bhavna Limbachia, pictured, from Lancashire, and Maya Sondhi, who play the feisty daughters Alia and Shazia respectively. Coming soon!

Teen jumps to his death An inquest has opened into the death of a tragic Birmingham teenager who fell 100 feet from a multistorey car park. Shoaib ‘Shebby’ Nadeem, 17, suffered fatal injuries after falling from the top of Moat Lane Car Park, in Digbeth, just after 3.35pm last Monday. Shoaib, pictured, spent four hours sitting on the ledge of the car park as police negotiators desperately tried to talk him down. But he fell to his death within minutes of sick onlookers encouraging him to jump. Shoaib, who was buried last Friday, had left heartbreaking final messages on Twitter, the day before the tragedy. One said: “Ok, this is goodbye from me, forever, I wish you all a good life, take care x.”

Visa for India: Red, amber or green? Obtaining a visa for India can be an experience, a terrible one too, as applicants keep telling me. Well yes, I know, but I thought things were slightly better now. Apparently not. In an attempt to gain assurance and satisfaction that the situation isn’t as bad now as travellers tell me it is, I emailed a week ago, again last Thursday, an enquiry to Mr RR Swain, acting Indian Consul in Birmingham. Usually prompt in his replies, Mr Swain has not responded. Perhaps he’s on a welldeserved break and was too rushed off his feet to put his ‘out of office’ on, or do a handover. Maybe he’s preparing lines to take. But let me not speculate. Readers: do email me your positive, or otherwise recent experiences of trying to obtain a visa, PIO, OCI.

chain of restaurants across London. Shabir Hussain, the managing director of Akbar’s was presented with the Restaurant of the Year trophy. Septuagenarian Ashit Kumar Sinha, President of Manchester Cultural and Diversity Association, was recognised for his longstanding contribution to diverse communities. Nadeem Mir, Chief Inspector with Greater Manchester Police was presented with a Special Award in the Uniform category. Excellent stage performances by show-

cased by Deepa Ganesh and her team at Upasana Dance Academy, as well as by Kajal Sharma Dance Academy. The event was organised by Anasudhin Azeez, managing director, and his team at Asian Lite, the newspaper, to mark its fifth anniversary and was held at Sheridan Suite, the postcode of which no SatNav recognises. Photo: Riz on the night with his parents, left, Ahmed and Bilkiss, brother Abdullah, aged 7, and grandmother Aminaben.

A ‘boozy’ Indian fundraiser Midlanders may want to venture to Hertfordshire next month for a charity Indian folk dance event. The garba and dandiya night on July 7 hopes to raise much needed funds for the Kamla Foundation, a charity whose vision is to see an India where “all people can live in dignity, free from hunger, deprivation and marginalisation”. Its patron is Baroness Jill Pitkeathley OBE, pictured, a veteran social worker. A year’s supply of Cobra Beer as the top raffle prize, highlighted in bold on the e-flyer, seems to be a lure to the event. But, alcohol, should it even feature at such events, where respect is usually observed, globally, and given they tend to be dedicated to Hindu goddesses?

Brum CEO swimming in cash Stephen Hughes of Birmingham City Council appears not to want ordinary citizens to contact him by telephone. He is the only chief executive, of all local authorities in the Midlands, who chooses not to feature his direct dial on the council website. Yet, he doesn’t mind, presumably, for taxpayers to pay his £233,097-a-year salary – that’s just over £90,000 more than David Cameron. This should dispel the myth that local government workers are swimming in cash – which is based on king-sized salaries paid to the likes of Mr Hughes, pictured, and his 46 other director and assistant director colleagues. In all fairness, Mr Hughes always has a full diary, irrespective of season. But what exactly does he do, does anyone know?

Swear on it Swearing is the most difficult habit to break, beating the likes of drinking too much caffeine, smoking, and chewing finger nails, according to a poll. More than a quarter (26%) of the 600 people questioned in the survey by ECigaretteDirect said that using too many expletives was their biggest vice.

One in three holidaymakers ignores medical advice when they set off for foreign climes, according to a new survey. Male travellers are less likely than women to follow doctor’s orders, while 18-24-yearolds are the age group most likely to ignore their doctor’s advice.

Pen on sale at £27,500 A rare pen designed by a Birmingham graduate has gone on sale at Harrods in London. Encrusted with 76 diamonds and made with 18 carat white gold, the pen costs £27,500 and is an innovative creation by Jack Row, 26, who graduated from Birmingham City University’s School of Jewellery three years ago.

Cutback on free bus travel Proposals have been unveiled by Birmingham City Council to axe free bus travel for 1,000 faith school pupils from September 2013. Free transport for faith schools is a discretionary service, and there is also no legal requirement for the authority to fund travel for post-16 students. The council currently provides free home to school transport for 4,000 pupils, and funds bus passes for a further 2,600 youngsters.

Health risks A “worrying” number of people in their 60s are ignoring their health, a new study has found. Almost a third of sexagenarians put off visiting their GP because they think problems will simply go away.

Royal honour for Yann A well-deserved British Empire Medal has been bestowed on Yann Rufus Lovelock, a Buddhist from Sparkhill in Birmingham, as part of the latest Queen’s Birthday Honours list. Yann, pictured, who sits on the Executive Board of Birmingham Interfaith Council, was honoured for his services to community cohesion and inter-faith relations in the West Midlands. Yann and his wife Ann have been tirelessly and selflessly serving diverse communities in Birmingham for years. Separately, Peter Hay, strategic director for adults and communities at Birmingham City Council has been awarded a CBE for his services to social and health care. Commenting on Mr Hay’s CBE, Unison, the union’s West Midlands regional secretary Ravi Subramanian said: “We think the Queen has been badly advised about this award. He seems to have been rewarded for a number of failures.”

Cash incentive for ‘troubled’ families Almost 8,000 “troubled families” in the West Midlands are to each receive payments of up to £4,000 as part of the government’s latest scheme designed to stamp out antisocial behaviour. The cash will be targeted at families where a child under 18 has committed an offence in the last 12 months, or where anyone in the family has received an ASBO or similar order in the past 12 months. The government estimates that there are 4,180 “troubled families” in Birmingham, as well as 740 in Dudley, 1,115 in Sandwell, 335 in Solihull, 795 in Walsall and 810 in Wolverhampton.

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Leading Lights

by Rani Singh

Special Assignments Editor

Shivangi Chaturvedi, 29 Shivangi Chaturvedi, a Major Donor Development Manager with The Prince’s Trust, has spent a good portion of her life travelling around the world. Born in Lusaka, Zambia, Shivangi was sent to boarding school in India, Woodstock International School, at a young age. She completed her further studies at Cornell University and the University of Sydney focussing on Hotel Administration and Marketing. While in Sydney, she met her future husband and moved to London with him. She has spent her career working in the media with stints at Sony Music International and CNN International and recently made the major move to work in charity. Tell me about your parents. Both my parents are from Allahabad in India. My father travelled to Zambia as a lawyer and bachelor on a three- year contract, and 35 years later my mother, a banker, has built a wonderful home with him there. Why did you choose to work for the Prince's Trust? My parents worked their hardest to give us the best education and opportunities, and I’ve grown up in a loving and encouraging environment. Yet, I still made many mistakes in my formative years. A lot of the young people that The Prince’s Trust reaches have grown up in difficult circumstances, without a safe environment, without anyone who believes that they deserve a future. The Prince’s Trust enables, inspires and believes in these young people. I chose to work here because I wanted to work for an organisation that makes a difference that lasts and tackles challenges when no one else will. I love what I do because it matters. How did the Prince's Trust start? In 1976 His Royal Highness, The Prince of Wales, recognised the growing isolation of far too many young people, and worried about both their lack of confidence and motivation. He acknowledged that there needed to be an investment in young people for the future of the nation, and charged his Trust with focussing on these young peoples’ potential. Last year alone the Prince’s Trust reached 53,000 young persons, with more than three in four of them moving into education, employment, training or volunteering. As President of The Trust, His Royal Highness is extremely passionate about the work that we do and is an inspiration to all of us on a daily basis. He has been closely involved in the charity’s work since its inception, and regularly meets young people who have benefited from

the charity’s programmes while attending a multitude of events throughout the year. What is the work of the Prince's Trust? The Prince’s Trust focuses on helping those who need it most, which means 13 to 30 year olds who are underachieving in education, leaving care, young and exoffenders and those who have been unemployed. Our core programmes encourage them to take responsibility for themselves and build a life they choose rather than what they’ve ended up

His Royal Highness is extremely passionate about the work that we do with. The programmes vary, depending on the needs of the young people. There are individually tailored long term one-to-one programmes for some of our hardest to reach young people helping them re-engage in society. Others help young people looking to be self-employed test their ideas, write business plans and often start their own businesses with both financial and mentor support. What initiatives do you get involved with, and what is your work all about? My task at The Prince’s Trust is growing awareness and interest amongst individuals, specifically philanthropists, about the work that The Prince’s Trust does. An area I am currently focussing on is the British Asian community. As the largest minority in the United Kingdom we represent a plethora of socio-economic demographics, while the top twenty richest British Asians represent more than £35 billion, 27.1% of Asian young people are unemployed*. We specifically need role models to whom the young people can relate. James Caan and Konnie Huq, ambassadors of The Trust, fully commit to and understand the work that we do while also being examples of

Shivangi Chaturvedi

success within our communities. Patrons of The Trust, our highest level of supporters, include Lakshmi Mittal, Lord Gulam Noon, The R a n g o o n w a l a Foundation and Rami Ranger. They have recognised the need and have offered support, without which we couldn’t possibly do the work that we do. However, with over 1.03 million young people in the UK out of employment, education or training, the requirement has never been greater than it is now, and we need to galvanize support from within our community. To reach a further 55,000 young people this year we need to raise over £55 million. s* As per the office of national statistics 2011 survey.

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9 UK Greek vote averts European disaster On a pivotal night for European politics and Greece's survival, Greek voters showed their support for the country's continued membership of the eurozone. The pro-bailout New Democracy party led by Antonis Samaras, pictured, secured a narrow victory in Sunday’s elections. The BBC reports that New Democracy took 29.7% of the vote (129 seats) narrowly beating their leftwing rivals, Syriza, who took 26.9% (71 seats). The pro-bailout socialist party, PanHellenic Socialist Movement (Pasok) finished in third place with 12.3% of the votes (33 seats). The victorious party is awarded a 50-seat bonus in parliament and one possible scenario could see the pro-bailout parties, New Democracy and Pasok form a coalition government thus giving them a majority with 162 seats in the 300-strong parliament. Syriza's charismatic leader, Alexis Tsipras has categorically refused to

participate in any coalition with New Democracy and he looks set to become a strong anti-austerity voice in the opposing ranks. “Anti-austerity is the only viable solution,” Tsipras proclaimed. In his victory speech, Mr Samaras labelled the election results as “a victory for all of Europe.” In spite of this, the imminent challenge for Greece's political parties is to form a functioning government and appoint a leader. In a statement released on Sunday, The White House congratulated Greece on its elections while urging the new leaders to promptly form a coalition in order to prevent further economic chaos. “We hope this election will lead quickly to the formation of a new

government that can make timely progress on the economic challenges facing the Greek people. As President Obama and other world leaders have said, we believe that it is in all our interests for Greece to remain in the euro area while respecting its commitment to reform. Going forward, we will engage Greece in the spirit of partnership that has guided our alliance and the friendship between our people." In a joint statement Presidents Herman Van Rompuy and José Manuel Barroso hailed the result of the election. “The Greek people have spoken. We fully respect their democratic choice. We are hopeful that the election results will allow a government to be formed quickly. Today, we salute the courage and resilience of the Greek citizens, fully aware of the sacrifices which are demanded from them to redress the Greek economy and build new, sustainable growth for the country. We will continue to stand by Greece as a member of the EU family and of the Euro area.”

Muslim woman jailed for beating ten year old girl A Muslim woman who repeatedly beat a ten-yearold girl with a steel ladle for not reading enough verses of the Koran has been jailed. Asia Parveen, pictured, who was five months pregnant at the time, left the child with 57 injuries and later claimed her violent outburst was prompted by her hormones. The girl managed to escape when Parveen ran to her kitchen for a knife, and was found alone at a bus stop in the early hours of the morning.

Parveen, 31, had argued with the girl on August 15 last year, Snaresbrook Crown Court in London heard. She accused the girl of lying about how many verses of the Koran she had read while praying before hitting the girl with the teninch ladle for 45 minutes and forced her to stand with her arms outstretched for four hours. The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, escaped when Parveen went to fetch a knife which she brandished, saying she was

going to kill her. Doctors identified 57 injuries, including marks on her arms, legs, elbows and head, when she was examined at hospital. Parveen, a mother of three, accepted causing some of the girl’s injuries with the ladle but claimed that others must have happened when the girl ‘fell over’.

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Tempting Providence Congratulations and many thanks for the special free issue of “Discover India”. In a concise booklet you have managed to cram in quite a lot of information about our motherland. I appreciate that it is not possible to provide detailed information on each and every place in a 36 page booklet, but I feel that the Delwara temples on Mount Abu with undoubtedly the master pieces of Jain architecture unrivalled in India for beauty and delicacy of carving could have received some mention. Also, at first read, I almost missed the bit about the temple city of Palitana with its 990 or so Jain temples on Mount Shatrunjay. It could have been given a little more prominence. This no way is a criticism of the beautiful booklet! I am certain that AV and GS cannot be beaten on value for money. While the cost of everything else is going up, the price of one thing hasn’t increased. At £55, it is still the same as what it was many years ago. This works out at 27.5 pence per copy and is less than the price of a second class postage stamp, which has gone up to 50p in April. This is exactly ten shillings in old money. How can ABPL afford to sustain this price? In addition to the 200 or so copies each of AV and GS in two years, we also receive 20 or so special supplements, not to forget the extremely useful and informative calendar. This is very good value for money, which cannot be surpassed by any other newsletter of magazine. Having said this, I hope I am not tempting Providence! Dinesh Sheth Newbury Park, Ilford

Honour killing – whose honour? The word honour denotes a positive respectable entity. But when it is associated with the killing of a human being it turns into an abhorrent ideology altogether. Everyone has a right to life, and so it follows that to a sensible person such killing, usually of a female person, is not ‘honourable’, let alone justified. This socalled honour killing is often made out to be a religious issue but it is not – it is essentially a man-made cultural issue where the family’s negative ego plays an enormous part. The tragedy, particularly for the children of ethnic minority families, is that when these episodes occur the paramount question that arises is why their parents chose to settle in a western country like the UK knowing that they will be fully exposed to, and influenced by, the western culture most of the time? Whose fault is it, then – is it of the western culture or is it of the children who want to be ‘free’ and be part of it? I cannot find fault with either. The western culture will be there whether one likes it or not. The children have no choice but to be brought up in a western setting. The fault therefore lies directly with the parents. They cannot and should not coerce their children into blindly following their ancestral traditions if they don’t want to.

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

London as a centre for financial services

Just a matter of leadership

As one of your London Members of the European Parliament, my job is to support London’s position as a centre of financial services globally. The sector is one of London’s biggest employers, yet many Londoners recognise the need to manage our money better. Where better to gain a strong understanding of finance, and to learn money management skills, than at school? This is why I am supporting My Money Week which runs from 25th June to 1st July this year, a week of activity in primary and secondary schools which provides a fantastic opportunity for young people to gain the skills, knowledge and confidence in money matters. Teachers especially, but also parents and carers, can download free and award winning resources at There are loads of great ideas for school activities like lesson plans, assembly plans, fashion shows, fetes, gardening projects, young people’s debates, peer mentoring projects and community economy projects. Financial education can be delivered as part of Maths, English, Drama, PSHE Education, Citizenship, Enterprise and Geography lessons. Now is a great time to get involved to join the 2.5 million young people who have already benefited from these activities. By increasing their knowledge, skills and confidence, we can give our young people a happier and more secure future. Please get involved in My Money Week if you can.

I would like to comment on Amit Patel's article "Leadership matters" in Av of 16th June. on education, knowledge and Gandhji's example. I have an interest in this as a past tutor of the Pharmaceutical Society GB of 25years and currently Chair of Kingston Gujarati School in SW London. I have come to the conclusion education is not enough to attain human happiness one needs "sanskar" or higher knowledge. Education today is solely promoted as a money making option rather then a way to attain higher human values and happiness, for oneself and wider society. A person with sanskars will learn to put up with misfortunes faced in life be it health or financial, if healthy or wealthy he will use this knowledge for the betterment of wider society. A pupil will only learn one third from his teacher the other one third he has to learn himself and the final third will come through life's experiences, this well known in Hindu culture but not appreciated in the West. Having gained a professional qualification myself, in the west, I found a need to further increase my personal "knowledge" for which I have turned to the Bhagavad Gita. I study it daily just as Gandhiji did. I feel Gandhiji was the Gita personified, and that he was a good example of "knowledge" as opposed to just education.

Syed Kamall Conservative MEP for London

It is outrageous on the part of the UPA government led by the Congress President Sonia Gandhi to nominate Pranab Mukherjee as the presidential nominee for the vacant seat created by the outgoing President Pratima Patil. Mr. Mukherjee has been named as one of the corrupt Ministers out of 15 in the present government by Anna Hazare team. Even though as the finance Minister he obtained from foreign governments the list of Indians who kept large amount of black money in foreign banks, he refused to announce the list openly in the Lok Sabha. The list was published in the foreign newspapers. The list included Sonia' Gandhi’s family with an asset of 5000 cores in foreign banks. Nobody in India has guts to speak against Sonia Gandhi. The UPA government is controlled by the Congress party and the other partners apart from Mamta Banerjee simply accept the Congress decisions meekly. The DMK, SP, BSP and so on support the Congress party since most of the Ministers in these parties are corrupt and some of them had been to jail. There is no unity among NDA partners and they are assorted lot. Unlike the Congress party which is ruled with iron fist by Sonia Gandhi there is no unity among BJP leaders. Jaswant Singh was shameless to go and approach Mulam Singh Yadav to get his support to become the vice President of India and he was insulted since Mr. Yadav refused to support a BJP candi-

Such a cozy set I see Sonia Gandhi and UPA announced the candidature of Pranab Mukherjee as India's 13th President. What a cozy setup. Sonia as leader of Congress, Singh as Prime Minister, and Mukherjee as President. China had a gang of 4. India now has a gang of 3. Playing follow my neighbour, I presume. If one of them puts his/her fingers in the till, there is one of them to save him/her. If all else fails, there is a back-up policy, i.e. a Presidential Pardon. Mohindra Master By email How will the community react to what clearly amounts to ‘murder’? Will it commendably pat the ‘dishonoured’ family on the back and say: Well done, you have saved our honour? Or will they say that attitudes are changing fast amongst today’s youths so you must change too? Highly unlikely. Whilst the youths may wish to remain with their community, they will increasingly want to be independent of it. The traditional family has to come to terms with this if honour killings are to be eradicated. Uttambhai D Mistry By email

Jayesh A Patel By email

Indian politics

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

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

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

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Your excellent editorial in last week’s AV is a timely reminder of what this once mighty nation is going through, a humiliation on economic, political and investment front. These are self inflicted wounds by UPA government and the dynastic family who rules the nation with an iron fist, as their private domain. The growth has fallen from a double digit to 5:7% and that is also mainly due to high growth in NDA ruled States like Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh (MP) and Bihar. Without their contribution, India’s woes would have indeed be too painful to bear for the long suffering public. Yet the central government treats these states like pariah states with scant respect, cutting all aids that they deserve and indeed legally are entitled to. These politicians have no morals, no acumen and could not see beyond their noses. Their only aim is to feather their nest with loot mentality. The Rupee is in free fall that would create balance of payment crisis, as India has to import high tech goods, such as hospital equipments, heavy machinery and turbines for industry and energy sectors. Yet the Government allows imports of heavily subsidised flimsy consumer goods from China that could easily be manufactured in India under right economic climate. This financially illiterate government neither cares nor gives a damn about the fall in living standard of the masses, as long as their Swiss accounts are regularly inflated with illegal money siphoned out of India. Standard & Poor agency has already down-graded India just one point above junk status and if sovereign downgrading becomes a reality, then the foreign investment would soon dry up, thus reducing India into a banana republic with mass unemployment, hunger and economic woes a million times worse than that of Euro Zone. Then people of India or indeed any democratic nation get what they deserve, as they are responsible for putting these corrupt to the core politicians into power. Bhupendra M Gandhi By email date. Some sections of BJP do not want a contest so that the party can beg Sonia Gandhi to nominate one of them for vicepresident post. Even in NDA, JD( U) and Shiv Sena want to support the Congress candidate. Under the present economic and political crisis India needs a strong neutral President and a sensible and robust opposition party to bring about a change in the political system. Unfortunately this is not happening. If the NDA under the BJP leadership fails to nominate a person to oppose the Congress candidate, it will fail to act as a sensible opposition group and it will become a party of turn coats. The BJP has become a party of geriatrics and it has reached its sell by date. India may need a new robust and strong opposition party. Arun Vaidyanathan By email

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

1 Year 2 Years

How the mighty has fallen



Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Locals encouraged to report abuse of elderly Ealing Council marked World Elder Abuse Awareness Day with a campaign to raise awareness of the problem and encourage residents to report suspected incidents. World Elder Abuse Awareness Day takes place on 15 June every year. Awareness of the issue is rising and the number of reported cases in Ealing has doubled from 203 when the campaign was first launched in 2006 to 440 cases last year. This year, the council focussed on the problem of pressure sores in older people as this can sometimes be an indication of neglect. The council alson ra a special awareness raising campaign in Southall because there are comparatively few abuse cases reported there each year,

so there is a concern that the problem is being under-reported. A number of activities took place locally on Friday 15 June. To highlight the problem of pressure sores, the council and the NHS hosted an information stall at Ealing Hospital from 1 to 4pm. They also ran a joint campaign to alert GPs and pharmacies to the issue. To encourage more Southall residents to report elder abuse, there was a special presentation for staff and customers at the Southall Day Centre Milap Branch on Shackleton Road at 10.30am. There was also an information stall on South Road from 12pm – 3pm. Michael Flanders Day Centre, Acton, hosted a special coffee morning and there was an information stall in the Customer

Services Centre at the main council building, Perceval House, from 12pm – 3pm. Councillor Jasbir Anand, cabinet member for Health and Adult Services, said: “Older people can be incredibly vulnerable and they deserve our respect and protection. We know that abuse and neglect happens and we want to empower people to come forward, report incidents and ask for help. If you know any older people, or their supporters and carers, please tell them about our events and encourage them to come along.” For more information on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, go to http://www.elderabuse.or If you would like to speak to someone at the council about elder abuse, or report suspected abuse, call 020 8825 8000.

Leeds Trinity University College seeks university status Leeds Trinity University College has confirmed it is seeking full university status under new government plans. Last week the government announced that the number of students required for a university had been reduced from 4,000 to 1,000. The college is one of 10 institutions across the UK to apply for a change of status. Founded in the 1960s, it has 3,000 students and is one of just three Catholic colleges in the UK. The institution grew out of two Catholic teacher training colleges in west Leeds. It runs courses in media, education and sports studies. Prof Freda Bridge, the college's principal and chief executive, said: "This is a very welcome development. "It will reduce confusion and further recognise our exceptional achieve-

ments in preparing graduates for the world of work with high-quality, professionally focused degrees." The announcement on


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thousands of families have been lifted above the poverty line without their circumstances changing at all. The figures show ministers have a long way to go to meet a target set by the previous Labour government - and enshrined in the 2010 Child Poverty Act - to eliminate poverty by 2020. And they mean a target set by Labour 10 years ago - when 3.4 million were living in poverty - to halve that figure by 2010/2011 was missed by about 600,000. The Children's Society said that, while action since 2000 had "pulled 1.1 million children out of poverty", current levels were still "a scar on our national conscience".

University complaints rise by 20% dents over how plagiarism is defined. The adjudication body received 1,605 complaints last year - with 16% of these deemed to be either fully or partially justified. The annual report observes that this continues an upward trend in the numbers of complaints. These complaints are from the last year before tuition fees are increased to up to £9,000 per year when it is expected that students will become even

Complaints by students against universities in England and Wales have increased by 20%, according to the official adjudicator. The Office of the Independent Adjudicator's annual report for 2011 shows complaints increasing for a sixth successive year. Disputes over plagiarism have helped to drive this increase, says the report. The National Union of Students called for less "confusion" for stu-



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defining child poverty. The government's Households Below Average Income statistics define child poverty as children living in homes taking in less than 60% of the median UK income. The median - the middle figure in a set of numbers - for 2010-2011 was £419 a week, down from £432 the year before. As a result, the level of household income which defines "in poverty" fell from £259, in 2009-2010, to £251 a week, the following year. The BBC's Mark Easton said that explained why 300,000 fewer children were classed as living in poverty. A fall in income throughout society in tough economic times has meant that

The number of children living in poverty in the UK fell by 300,000 last year as household incomes dropped, official figures have revealed. In 2010-11, 18% of children (2.3 million) lived in households classed as below the poverty line - a 2% drop. This was because the measure is based on median incomes which also went down. The Children's Society welcomed "the lowest poverty level since the mid-1980s" but said that may be reversed by "drastic cuts to support and services". The government, meanwhile, says drug addiction, homelessness and unemployment should be considered as well as income when


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more demanding consumers. Adjudicator Rob Behrens predicts that the increase in complaints is "likely to be accentuated" when fees rise this autumn. The report says the complaints from 2011 show concern over plagiarism - and how such cheating is defined. It says there is "ambiguity", such as what level of assistance is permitted for a postgraduate thesis.

the change in requirements was made last week by David Willetts, the minister for universities and science.

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Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Scrutator’s A true Indian heroine. Not an overhyped word but the real thing. Captain Urmila Yadav, piloting an ATR Air India aircraft with a lost nose wheel detached during takeoff for an hour’s flight from Silchar to the Assam capital Guwahati, displayed remarkable coolness and dexterity manoeuvring the plane, dumping fuel as she went, instructing that luggage be shifted from front to rear for maximum balance, before making a safe landing to a standing ovation from 48 fraught passengers who had hovered between life and death minutes earlier. The crew showed exemplary fortitude and the Captain did the rest. A looming tragedy dissolved in rapture. Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi telephoned Captain Urmila: “Hats off to you and your co-pilot for Captain Urmila Yadav your daring and courageous act which saved the lives of passengers” (The Hindu June 11 carried this as its lead front-page story). You can have all the training there is, you can memorize emergency manuals to the last letter, but alone in the cockpit pilot and co-pilot make the critical decisions. That a 50-yearold woman, in this case, took the responsibility is doubly satisfying.

Gender-neutral technology Here is a tale to warm the cockles of every Indian heart. Girls in the Kashmir valley are “scripting new success stories when it comes to their academic and technical skills. The new generation of girls has not only enrolled in technical courses in more numbers but has also outperformed the boys” (The Hindu June 11). Bucking earlier social and educational trends, facing down the intimidation and coercive violence of the jehadi and Hurriyat brigades, these young women have set an example to their sisters throughout the country. At the Islamic University of Science and Technology (IUST) and University of Kashmir a good number of young women have opted for science courses which were once the preserve of males. The numbers of females enrolling for MBA and B.Tech, electronics and communications, civil engineering and food technology courses is rising fast, pointing hopefully to a Kashmiri-Indian springtime, whose blossoms will have a fragrance sadly lacking in the touted Arab spring.

Girls excel In schools “Girls outshine boys in CBSE Class XII” was the headline to a recent Times of India report (May 29). The CBSE examination conducted by the Delhi board is the most rigorous and sought after school leaving certificate in India. Such are its standards that Cambridge and London universities, and now Oxford, are enrolling the best CBSE students for their undergraduate degrees, thus reversing the former practice of only admitting students with good Indian BAs from approved Indian institutions, with a year’s exemption in the UK.

Welfare project “In pursuit of his long-cherished goal of making India hunger-free by 2020, Sam Pitroda, Adviser to India’s Prime Minister, along with Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dixit announced the launch of the country’s first Food Bank as part of the India Food Banking Network (IFBN)” (The Hindu June 9).

Sam Pitroda

Mr Pitroda said the idea for IFBN emerged from discussions with the Global Food Network in Chicago. Noting that food banks were currently operational in 30 countries, he remarked: “I have always believed technology can greatly help in solving issues relating to hunger and through this launch, we will bring technology, logistics, IT and the involvement of the local community to feed their own community.” This, explained Mr Pitroda, was to be a corporate endeavour involving the government, private sector, NGOs and relevant elements of civil society. With the implementation of the Delhi Food Bank, the aim, said Mr Pitroda, would be to create an enduring model by 2020. All power to his elbow.

Foreign influx Meanwhile, a full-page report in The Telegraph (Kolkata June 10) by Manjula Sen and Kavitha

Shanmugam tells of a “Foreign Invasion” of India, in their words, “not quite a flood, but not quite a trickle either. Westerners are flocking to India for jobs and to set up businesses.” Quite a revelation this, after the media feeding frenzy on the country’s approaching apocalypse.

Attractive destination “India is very attractive job destination globally,” avers Sunil Goel, director placement agency, Global Hunt India Private Limited. Sen-Shanmugam write, apropos of their conversation with him: “In the past five years, he says, there’s been a flood of queries for jobs in India from Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Asian countries in the automobile, infrastructure and investment banking sectors. So keen is the interest in opportunities in India that, a website that covers 233 countries lists 168 nationalities spread out in 11 destinations in India. Its jobs section has seen a flood of queries from young people in Europe and elsewhere looking for openings here….most of its members are from France, followed by the US and Spain.”

Growth story Our reporters continue: “Propelling the flow of talent into this emerging market, are shrinking job opportunities in contracting economies in Europe and the US, as well as the India growth story that is now seen to add lustre to global resumes.” India is no longer seen as a hardship posting, said Frenchman Olivier Jacquier, who has chalked up two years as General Manager with Volvo’s Group Trucks Technology in Bangalore, says he was keen to be posted here. He told his interlocutors, “I wanted a real foreign experience with my family (wife and three children). India is booming and there are better career prospects with Volvo in a country where it is doing big investments. Since India will become a major country for automotives in the coming decade, we should get in early.” India became home to an American named Shawn in 2006, who has set up a trading company in Chennai and says: “In India history is being made with young people going through a rapid cultural change. I want to be in the centre of the new world order and that is India.”

Confidence undiminished Olivier Jacquier again. He laughed when asked if he wasn’t worried about India’s economic slowdown. “People say only 6 per cent – that’s a figure Europe can only dream of. I am not worried, for the economic cycle always goes up and down. But there is confidence in this market.” Comments Shiv Aggarwal, Managing Director, ABC

Consultants: “The salary structure has changed in India and matches what mid-level managers get abroad. India offers high-end homes, malls, foreign brands, multi-cuisine etc which makes an expat’s life comfortable,” to which our reporters add: “Factor in good schools and lower living costs, and expats end up with a better lifestyle in India than that back home.” Finally, there are presently 2.3 million registered expats in the country compared to about 1.2 million four years ago.

Standard & Poors warning Rating agency Standard & Poors “junk status” warning to India, provoked a robust response from Indian commerce and industry body president, Assocham’s Rajkumar Dhoot. He said the self-same Standard & Poors gave triple AAA ratings to some of the junk financial products emanating from New York’s Wall Street a few days before the Lehman Brothers collapse in September 2008, which triggered the current global economic crisis. Mr Dhoot advised India “not to get rattled” by rating agencies, as “the Indian economy has an inherent strength and (no) record of defaults in any of our international obligations.”

US waiver for India The US decision to issue a waiver for India on possible US sanctions for its oil imports from Iran got the Indo-US Strategic Dialogue in Washington to a good start... Others joining India on this exemption list were South Korea, Japan, the

on the sidelines of the talks remarked sardonically that only two years ago the US favoured a less intrusive Indian presence in Afghanistan to placate. Pakistan. Nevertheless, both sides expressed broad satisfaction with the outcomes of this phase of the Strategic Dialogue. On message was Indian Foreign Minister S.M.Krishna’s departure for Cuba, which the US has quarantined for the past half century and more.

Naval outreach India is keenly aware of its geostrategic interests. Witness the significant augmentation of the country’s western and eastern fleets respectively. The stretch of water from the Red Sea and the Horn of Africa to the South China Sea, the Strait of Malacca and beyond is well covered in the country’s maritime diplomacy. Addressing the recent naval commanders’ conference in New Delhi, Defence Minister A.K.Antony said the nation’s strategic location in the Indian Ocean and the professional capabilities of its Navy “bestow upon us a natural ability to play a leading role in ensuring peace and stability in the Indian Ocean Region. (The Hindu June 14).

Top-level meeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh convened a top-level meeting on India’s nuclear weapons arsenal, its command and control structures as well as the state of operational readiness. Sources said this “topsecret” conclave of the Nuclear Command Authority was attended by ministers of the Cabinet

Foreign Minister S.M. Krishna with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Washington

Philippines and Taiwan New Delhi views Iran as a key facilitator in its regional policy, including India’s access to Central Asian markets and for a broader strategic foot print in the area. As for the Indo-US Strategic Dialogue itself, The Times of India’s Washington Correspondent Chidanand Rajghatta (June 14) opined that, while the relationship between the two countries in science and technology cooperation was as smooth as silk, discussions on geostrategic issues were twopaced: the US was eager for a greater Indian outreach in trouble spots such as Afghanistan, India preferred a more cautious approach. An Indian diplomat

Committee on Security, the Adviser on National Security and the three service chiefs. India has a no first-use nuclear doctrine, to which Pakistan and China do not subscribe. Pakistan of late has been brandishing its short-range nuclear-capable Nasr missile, promising to use it even in a conventional conflict with India. Better, surely, to survive in the real world than disappear in a cloud of ash bearing the brotherly brand projected by the breastbeating, self-serving mafia of Indian appeaseniks, who bet ritually in the Islamabad sweepstakes and come up trumps with the same rotten lemon each and every time!


Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Political Sketchbook

Alpesh Patel’s

What India Can Teach Britain About Being a Big Society The anniversary of the London riots is nearly upon us. Some say they were down to yobs. Others say due to unemployment. Others say it is gang culture or that kids see wealth and feel entitled to steal some of it. So how come we don’t have such riots in India – where all these factors are in play - and what can India teach Britain about running a society of the poor, surrounding by wealth, without riots. And even in the UK, you won’t find ‘Asian’ or Indians involved anyway in riots. Our children were too busy getting A*s. So surely Indians must have lots to teach Britain? I was in India a fortnight ago and met International Justice Mission. They showed me exactly what India can do so well. The day I was due to meet them they raided brick kiln factories and freed 40 ‘slaves’. The operators of RNN Bricks paid the victims far below the Tamil Nadu Minimum Wage of Rs. 136.02 per day; the labourers were made to work for more than 16 hours each day. The brick kiln owners also denied the labourers freedom of movement and the freedom to work outside of the facility. Immediately following the rescue operation, the District Government conducted an enquiry into the facilities’ labour practices and found that 23 bonded labourers were victims of illegal forced labour practices at the hands of the facility owners. Bonded labour is a severe human rights violation abolished by the Bonded

Labour Abolition Act (BLA) in 1976. It’s good to see a 35 year old law is still useful. Bonded labour occurs when a person is forced to work in order to pay off an illegal advance. Creditors (employers) use the advance to prevent the debtors (labourers) from traveling, seeking alternative employment opportunities, or selling their goods and services in the market as they wish. Specifically, the employer takes advantage of the labourers’ vulnerability and will often pay them less than minimum wage or no wage at all. Victims of bonded labour are subject to oppression, abuse, and are denied basic human dignity and rights enshrined in the Indian Constitution. Proactive intervention on bonded labour cases demonstrates commitment to prioritizing and eradicating bonded labour crime from the nation. IJM is a global human rights organization that secures justice for victims of bonded labour and other forms of violent oppression. Since 2001, IJM Chennai has assisted state and local government officials in the release and rehabilitation of over 3700 victims trapped in the bonded labour system. If only Britain was more like India, then the rioting yobs would have been grateful for not being in bonded labour. So India has lots to teach Britain by its example. On second thoughts since Britain eradicated slavery a couple of hundred years ago, maybe it is what India can learn from Britain that I should be asking.

Cameron extends an invitation to the rich French Britain will welcome the rich French along with their businesses if the new French government led by François Hollande pushes ahead with plans to introduce punitive tax rates. As the French government prepares to increase the top rate of tax up to 75% in order to fund increased public spending, David Cameron stated his intention to “roll out the red carpet” to welcome affluent French businesses and individuals to the UK. Mr Cameron’s remarks are likely to further corrode the relationship with Mr Hollande.

French President, François Hollande (left) and British Prime Minister David Cameron (right).

Sri Hanumanji – the Embodiment of Perfection Living in this world, it is almost impossible for any individual to live a life that is above criticism – just or unjust. If we study the great epic Ramayana, we find that even Lord Rama and Mother Sita could not escape criticism, though unjust, from their own subjects. The only person in the Ramayana who succeeded in accomplishing this difficult task is Sri Hanuman – the greatest devotee of the Lord. We do not find a single incident wherein Sri Hanuman has made any mistake and got blamed for it. He is the very embodiment of wis-

dom, devotion and service. This noble son of Wind God (Vayu) has innumerable virtues. He served Lord Rama in so many ways that the Lord himself felt overwhelmed with extreme love and gratitude for Sri Hanuman. But on hearing his own praise, Sri Hanuman, the true devotee of the Lord, fell at his feet with tears in his eyes, giving all credit for his achievements to Lord Rama alone. What a noble and inspiring ideal of service with utmost humility! For more information on the event, as well as to

buy tickets, please visit the following website: aranjaneya.htm You can also find more details in the Asian Voice on page 9


Warsi promoted holiday flats during official trip Baroness Warsi, pictured, the co-chairman of the Conservative party, faces fresh questions over a blurring of her personal interests and her official duties after she promoted a private holiday development during a government trip to Pakistan. The cabinet minister was photographed alongside a millionaire entrepreneur who is a friend of her business partner, Abid Hussain, as she opened the luxury resort. Her image has since been used on the resort’s website to attract British clients. Warsi is already being investigated by Sir Alex Allan, the ministerial watchdog, for taking Hussain on an official visit to Pakistan without declaring their joint stake in a Sheffield-based food company. Warsi opened the holiday complex on July 17, 2010, a month after joining the cabinet. That morning she attended an “outreach” event at the Hilton hotel in Mirpur with Adam Thomson, the British high commissioner. She told David Cameron earlier this month that Hussain had also been present because he was a member of the

Pakistani diaspora who “provided advice and support”. However, later the same day Warsi took Thomson and other officials at taxpayers’ expense to cut a ceremonial ribbon at the Mirpur Apartments. The complex, which has a pool, gym and mosque, is aimed at British tourists of Pakistani origin. The apartments are part of the Valley Homes development owned by Zafar Anwar, a Pakistani

e n t r e p r e n e u r. Hussain and Anwar are “very close friends”, according to informed sources. The first entry on an online guest book for Mirpur Apartments has been written by “Mr & Mrs Barrister Abid, London, United Kingdom”. Hussain, of Walthamstow, east London, is commonly known as “Barrister Abid” even though the Bar Council has no record of his qualifying. The Mirpur Apartments complex is linked to a company in Ilford, east London. On Friday, Abbas Zahoor, a director, initially said it was “a partnership” with Valley Homes and Anwar. Yesterday the resort’s website was taken down. Hussain denies having a financial interest in Valley Homes or Mirpur Apartments. Anwar did not return calls. A spokesman for Warsi said her attendance at the inauguration was a matter of public record. “She has no business interests in Pakistan,” he said.

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Anand Mela



Thousands enjoy the fun and frolic at Anand Mela The year 2012, especially the month of June, has been a memorable one, firstly because of Queen’s diamond jubilee and secondly because of the 40th anniversary of Gujarat Samachar and Asian Voice. On this occasion, the tabloids had arranged an Anand Mela (festival of fun), which was a huge success; moreover it was enjoyed by thousands. Youth, children and seniors visited the mela and enjoyed the fun, food and frolic. The mela displayed diverse colours and rich heritage of Indian culture, particularly from Gujarat region. There were 80 different varieties of stalls and a rich variety of cultural programmes and food of different cuisines. It was also an occasion for families to come together and enjoy the variety programmes. It was arranged at Byron Hall at Harrow Leisure Centre on 9and 10 June The year 2012, especially the month of June, has been a memorable one, firstly because of Queen’s diamond jubilee and secondly because of the 40th anniversary of Gujarat Samachar and Asian Voice. On this occasion, the tabloids had arranged an Anand Mela (festival of fun), which was a huge success; moreover it was enjoyed by thousands. Youth, children and seniors visited the mela and enjoyed the fun, food and frolic. The mela displayed diverse colours as well as a rich heritage of Indian culture, particularly from Gujarat region. There were 80 different varieties of stalls and a rich variety of cultural programmes and food of different cuisines. It was also an occasion for

Ashok Pednekar giving a presentation on Kesari Tours

families to come together and enjoy the variety programmes. It was arranged at Byron Hall at Harrow Leisure Centre on 9 and 10 June. Gujarat Samachar and Asian Voice were overwhelmed by the huge response to the mela. Weather was very good on both the days. Visitors were found shopping at the mela

Amit Kansara entertaining the crowd with Hindi Songs

from the morning. The mela had a good mix of entertainment, education, health, medical, travel, property, banking, finance, fashion, wedding and much more. On the upper floor of the hall elderly people were participating in ‘Vadilotsav and Health Seminar’ under the leadership of Kamal Rao. The mela was inaugurated with the lighting of lamp by Lord Dolar Popat in the presence of Harrow East MP Rt Hon Bob Blackman, Assembly member Navinbhai Shah and Editor/Publisher CB Patel. It was started with Ganesh stuti and Ma Bhagwati vandana by Kokilaben Patel. The flags of Britain and India were unfurled with Indian national anthems of ‘Jana Gana Mana’ and ‘Save the Queen’ . Dignitaries conveyed best wishes for the Queen’s good health and long life. Consulting editor Jyotsnaben Shah was anchoring the programme and introduced child artists of Mavdhata youth and community. Tiny tots came up with flags in their hands and presented a lovely patriotic song. Kathak and Bharatnatyam dance was performed by Prithvi and Sanal highlighting the culture and heritage of India .Ashok Pednekar of Kesari tours and travels, the main sponsor, and Dipika Khetani of Akshay Patra, the sponsored charity, gave an introduction about the activities of their organisations. Akshay Patra is a charity organisation providing free food to schools in India. On 9 June, manager Alkaben Shah took over the stage after lunch. There was a dance on Bollywood num-

Hemina Shah singing at the Mela

Maya Dipak singing bhajans

ber by young Avina Shah of Kalaria dance academy. Later it was followed by catwalk by models of Kuntal Hindulkar. The models were wearing designer out-

Swami Shri Satyamitranand Giriji Maharaj along with others on stage while the national anthems of both India and UK are played

Crowd standing while the national anthems of India and UK are played

Dipika Khaitan speaking about the Charity Akshayapatra at the Mela

fits from ‘Venisons.’ The next item consisted of singing old and new songs of Kishore Kumar, Mohammed Rafi and Sonu Nigam by Amit Kansara which was highly appreciated by the audience. Next were Bipin Master’s mimicry programme, Arun Dodhiya’s Bollywood music and Bhavik Hariyana’s

Achala Hiran Miyani entertaining the crowd with bollywood songs

songs of Jagjit Singh, Mukesh and Rafi. One of the very youth appealing items was James Bond number which was originally sung by Shirley Bassey but at the program it was presented by young Bengali artist, Madhuleena. The item which audience eagerly waited was the performance by a well-known singer Mayadipak who is a pride of Gujarat. People welcomed her with lots of cheers and claps. And the best part was when the audience readily joined her singing ‘Tari Ankhnau afini’.The Saturday event and mela ended with lots of bonhomie. Though Sunday 10 June was forecasted as a rainy and cloudy day, but neither of it happened. In fact, the sun was happily shining and seemed like enjoying the mela. People started rushing to the mela in the morning and within couple of hours the place was overcrowding with

Surendra Patel singing bhajan at the mela

fun lovers. Editor, CB Patel made it a point to visit each and every stall, meeting every trader, seller and vendor. All of them were happy with the experience and they heartily conveyed their thanks for such a fantastic mela and also asked CB to keep on doing such events. After the lunch break, Garba item was presented by Anupam Mission girls; they had expressed Shri Ghanshyam Sringar by way of Garba. Other young girls had presented a Garba with Yogiji Maharaj Vandana. Yaksh and Diya Raval did a very interesting filmi number. Two Bollywood dances were also performed by children of Kuntal dance academy. Achala Miyani prompted everyone to join with her ‘Bhulibishari Yaada’ number. Women of Mahavir Foundation depicted a drama ‘Ba ni mala,’ in which they show the predicament of an old Ba who was not able to devote

Stand-up comedy by Bhanubhai Pandya

herself completely to God and religion because of wordly distractions. There was a fashion show also and the theme was “varvadhu,” where the ramp walkers were dressed in wedding dresses of different Indian states and religion. Koki Wasani had provided all the bridal wedding dresses, the dresses were the ones used in bridal show at Brent town hall before 15 years. The grooms Sherwanis-Kurta's provide Venisons. The wedding dresses were of Kashmir, Punjab, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh,Bengal, Kutch, Kathiawad, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Kerela, etc. Navin Kundra performed a Bollywood number and Arun Dodiya also came up with an interesting filmi song. Wellknown singer Maya Dipak's new 'Lagna geeto' CD was also inagurated by CB Patel, Sarojben Patel, Surendrabhai Patel of Bhavans and Ashwin Popat from Anupam mission. Maya Dipak presented old songs and Lokgeet in her melodious voice. People enjoyed every item thoroughly, overall the mela turned out to be a refreshing and entertaining event with a lot of community feeling and togetherness. Photo Courtesy Sam Desai from Illusion Photography, Ajit Pandye of Sunny Photo & Video Fashion Show costume by Venisons Makeup and hairstylist Varsha & Sweta Vajir

Arun Dodhia along with Pramohrai Bhaichande and Kalyanjibhai

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Choreographer Honey Kalaria interacting with the crowd

Navin Kundra at the Mela

Singer Avina Shah at the Mela

Madhulina Chattaraj performing at the Mela

Mrunmayi Godbole, Ashok Pednekar, Amol Salgar of Kesari Tours UK along with Nihir Shah ABPL (centre)

Dance performance by Honey Dance Academy

Performance by Anupam Mission

Performance from Honey Dance Academy

Performers of Honey Dance Academy

Bhavik Hariya singing Indian classical


Kathak performance by Prithivi Shah

Performance by Mandhatha Youth Community

Performers from Kuntal Dance Academy

Performance by Anupam Mission

Kuntal Indulkar of Kuntal Dance Academy and Bhairav Zariwala of Venisons with the models

Fashion Show by Kuntal Dance Academy

Dance by Yax Rawal and Dia Padhiyar

Bridal- Groom show (costume provider Koki Wasani)

Sudhaben Kapashi, Dhvani Shah, Rita Sheth, Rupa Kapashi, Dip Doshi of Mahavir Foundation performing a Gujarati drama


Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Rajiv Menon to do a biopic on M S Subbulakshmi Rajiv Menon, the ace cinematographer turned filmmaker, will start a biopic on Carnatic music legend M S Subbulakshmi. "Pre-production work has already started. The shooting will start in July," say sources. Rajiv Menon, who earlier directed movies such as 'Minsara Kanavu' and 'Kandukonden Kandukonden', has done a lot of research for this project on MS. "His film will be a fitting tribute to the musical legend," add sources. Subbulakshmi, who was fondly called as 'MS Amma,' earned global acclaim for her sublime voice and mellifluous rendition of classical songs. She added value to many reputed awards.

Vidya's Silk act doesn't inspire Veena Malik Pakistani actress Veena Malik, who has been roped in to play the lead role in the Kannada version of “The Dirty Picture,” is not inspired by actress Vidya Balan's Silk act in the original. "When it comes to acting, I would not say I am inspired from Vidyaji because I have not seen her film, The Dirty Picture," Veena said at a photo shoot for her yet untitled debut music album. "I was planning to see it but when I got the Kannada version of the film, I decided against it because I did not want my character to have any outside imprints. Everyone is appreciating Vidyaji and no doubt, she is a wonderful actress," she added. Veena's Bollywood debut film “Daal Mein Kuch Kaala Hai” is ready to release.

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Abhishek’s secret passion Besides wife Aishwarya and daughter Aaradhya, Abhishek Bachchan has a secret passion. He loves fast cars, especially those that burn up the race tracks. Unlike his contemporaries from the film fraternity who rush to the Grand Prix races every year, Abhishek has chosen to attend a far more elitist race event. He left last week for the 24 Hours of Le Mans car racing event to be held in Le Mans in France. Apparently he had been planning to attend this 80year- old annual racing event for some years now. “But he never got around to it until now. Every year something or the other would come up putting a roadblock in the way of his secret fantasy. This year Abhishek was determined to make it,” says a friend of Abhishek’s. Interestingly Le Mans is the only car racing event in the world where the cars on the tracks uninterrupted for 24 hours.

Emraan Hashmi wants to play unpredictable roles Better known for his romantic and casanova image so far, actor Emraan Hashmi says his latest film ‘Shanghai’ has changed the perception of people about him and now he wants to play unpredictable roles. "In Shanghai a new Emraan Hashmi was showcased. For me, this film has reconstructed the perception that people had about me. After this whatever role I play, it should be as unpredictable as this. I want to surprise the audience," Hashmi said. Emraan was sporting a paunch and buck tooth ‘Shanghai.’ He also shed his "serial kisser" image as there is no such scene in the movie. "I want to be an actor who presents his films to everyone. We know there is a divided audience. Some actors are safe and cater to one particular set of audience.”

Hrithik Roshan leaves Aamir behind again He may have landed only the No 3 slot but this is the second time Hrithik Roshan has scored over superstar Aamir Khan. These were the results of an online poll in May, titled the ‘Stars India Loves.’ According to the results, the top 10 male stars in the Hindi film industry are: Salman Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, Hrithik Roshan, Aamir Khan, Akshay Kumar, Ranbir Kapoor, Shahid Kapoor, Amitabh Bachchan, Ajay Devgn and John Abraham. This is the second time that Hrithik after the super success of “Agneepath,” has ranked above Aamir Khan in an online poll. The actor's popularity zoomed up the charts after he hosted the television show “Just Dance,” where the dance hero touched millions of hearts with his sensitivity and honesty.

No need to be size zero to woo audience: Huma Qureshi

Kollywood actress Divya Spandana rubbishes reports suggesting that she's all set to tie the knot with beau Raphael. The moment Divya S p a n d a n a announced her relationship with Portuguese businessman Raphael, about a year and a half ago; speculation has been rife about when she would formalize the same, given that she's even sporting a tattoo of his name. Recently it was reported that the actor, who is working on Kodi Ramakrishna's upcoming flick, has been making wedding plans. A wedding date is on the horizon, said a report. But Divya denies it. "I do not have wedding plans yet and no date has been set," asserts the actress, adding, "I am in a secure relationship right now, which allows me to focus on my other goals.”

Hot Garam masala


Divya says knot yet!

Newbie Huma Qureshi, who is all set to debut in Bollywood with Anurag Kashyap's 'Gangs of Wasseypur', says one does not have to be size zero to connect with the audience. "I think you don't have to be size zero to prove connect with the audience. It should be that the audience should enjoy the film. And if you can provide that enjoyment with the way you are then nothing like it," said Huma. "In fact, I am paired opposite someone who is very tiny, Nawaz is a little short and tiny...he is size zero," she said. "In school I was always a fat girl. No matter how thin you are but girls always have this thing in mind that I am a little fat," Huma quipped. But she says, these days filmmakers like Anurag Kashyap have a different thinking and are not obsessed with weight issues. “I remember during an ad shoot Anurag said to me that you are doing my film, and I was wondering do we really get films so easily. I thought you have to struggle and all. But he kept his word and offered me 'Gangs of Wasseypur'. All this is like a boon," the actor said. “When the film began, one thing that I noticed about Anurag is that he is one such filmmaker who is not obsessed about weight. He is ok with two to three kgs here and there,” she said.

Ex-flames come together for film Salman Khan to play a I like heroines who are promotion in superhero in ‘Sher Khan’ 'hari bhari': Akshay Kumar Ahmedabad

Megastar Salman Khan is all set to turn a superhero. Post the success of his contemporaries Shah Rukh Khan and Hrithik Roshan in the superhero avatar, ‘Sher Khan’ maker Sohail Khan has plans to cast Salman into a superhero with magical locks. In the words of writer Rumi Jaffery, Sohail`s home production will "feature Salman in a look he has never tried before." ‘Sher Khan’ will boast of some never-seen-before special effects. Reports have it that these special effects would be bigger and better than any other Bollywood superhero flick. So will Salman be seen flying in the air wearing a cape? To which Rumi said he

would not do anything of that sort, and, "He will be a hero that kids can identify with. The action scenes won`t have him beating up a dozen goons single-handedly. He has done these things many times before," said Rumi. It is learnt that Salman`s action scenes will be inspired by the ancient forms of martial arts from Kerala. "Though he has had a massive fan following among kids, none of Salman bhai`s films have been specially targeted at children. Dilip Shukla (who`s also writing Dabangg 2) and I are designing bhai`s first film aimed at the young viewers," added Rumi. The film is being made on a budget of more than Rs 1 billion and it is expected to go on floors by October this year.

Ranbir takes a dig at Kareena Those close to Ranbir Kapoor know he's a merciless mimic. But to see him doing takeoffs on his entire Kapoor khandaan on a global platform, especially cousin Kareena, took a lot of gumption. It therefore came as a surprise to those close to the Kapoor khandaan to see Ranbir doing a takeoff on his cousin Kareena Kapoor at the recently concluded IIFA awards. Ayushmann Khurrana of “Vicky Donor” fame joined Ranbir in the masti. This was his first visit to the global awards. Says a source, "Ranbir and Ayushmann were supposed to do a takeoff on Prithiviraj Kapoor, Raj Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor and Kareena. However, the Rishi interlude was changed, and Ranbir-Ayushmann ended up dancing to a Rishi Kapoor tune rather than mimicking him." Kareena, however, got the full brunt of the Ranbir treatment when he and Ayushmann parodied her pouty pirouette in Bebo main bebo.

Akshay Kumar calls himself a true blue Delhiite, and makes it a point to ensure "mahine mein ek do baar aana ho jaye." The actor, who is currently on a high with the success of "Housefull 2" and "Rowdy Rathore", is excited about coming back to action. "After seven years, I got to do action. I say, I am a newcomer today," he admits, adding that he is also working in "Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai 2", which also has action thrown into it. Even though the actor might enjoy beating up goons, he is cautious of not getting his son Aarav on the sets. "First of all, he doesn't see me doing stunts. I don't take him to shoots. Baap bete ko thodi na le jaayega, ki aa main tujhe stunts dikhaoon. Watching them in movies is fine because there is a lot of optical action involved. In my life, I have done all my stunts and I am proud to say it," he stresses. Akshay, who enjoys going on bike rides and rock climbing during his leisure time, has

a word of praise for Sonkashi Sinha and Asin. "They are very much in tune with today's times. To me, they are not newcomers. Sonakshi is a wonderful actress who has her own style of acting. She has an absolutely different figure - a typical, Indian figure and not size zero. Khaate peete gharane ki lagti hain. I am a pure Punjabi. I like heroines who are hari bhari. Chusa hua aam na lagey," he reveals, asking the media how we are going to translate 'chusa hua aam' into English. "Will it be sucked out mangoes?" he questioned us with a giggle. Perhaps, this happiness comes from the fact that his wife Twinkle is expecting her second child. The family man that he is, Akshay is ensuring that he shoots most of the time in Mumbai. "It is great to become a father again. I have two words to describe it 'House Full'.

Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra and actor Shahid Kapoor were in Ahmedabad to promote their soon-to-be-released film “Teri Meri Kahaani.” It is directed by Kunal Kohli. Ex-lovers Shahid and Priyanka have forgotton their past and have been reunited on the film and are waiting to create a buzz. Sajid-Wajid has provided a perfect musical base for their story by churning out a soundtrack that has a youthful fervour. It grows on you. The album manages to capture the essence of three different periods on which the film travels. Priyanka says, “Teri Meri Kahaani is not about

punarjanam nor pichle janam ka pyaar or on reincarnation, but it is related to soul-mates, like in Hindu marriage, partners take Saat-phera that binds them into bonding for next seven lives.” There are three eras of 1920, 1960 and 2012. When Priyanka was asked which era she liked most, she said, “I loved the 1960 era saris the most.” Shahid came up with the shayari used in the film, he said, “Aap hame bhul jaye, hame koi gam nahi, par jo meine aap ko bhula diya, samaj lijeye ishe duniya mein ham nahi,” as the film is all about shayari, masti and lots of ishq. - Purvi Apurva Shah

Jackie Shroff in ‘Dhoom 3’ Esha Deol to tie knot on June 29 There is good news for all Jackie Shroff fans as their favourite Jaggu Dada is all set to make a grand comeback with Yash Raj Film's “Dhoom 3.” Jackie was approached by producer Aditya Chopra to play a pivotal role in the third instalment of the popular action packed franchise. They have asked Jackie to shoot for 10 days. In ‘‘Dhoom 3,’’ Jackie will share screen space with his “Rangeela” co-star Aamir Khan after a gap of 17 years. Jackie is very excited to be a part of the film and is likely to start shooting for the film this month itself. “Dhoom 3,” directed by Vijay Krishna Acharya also stars Katrina Kaif, Abhishek Bachchan and Uday Chopra and will hit the theatres in 2013.

Esha Deol will tie the knot with her fiance Bharat Takhtani on 29th of this month. According to the reports, the wedding will take place in a temple in suburban Mumbai. Though the ceremony will be a private affair, the couple will be hosting a grand wedding reception on the very next day i.e. on 30th June at a Mumbai posh hotel. Esha has been dating Bharat, a Mumbai- based businessman by profession, for more than a year. The couple got engaged on February 12 this year, at Hema Malini's Juhu residency. Daughter of Hema Malini and Dharmendra, Esha started her career in Bollywood with ‘Koi Mere dil se Poochhe ‘and bagged the Filmfare Award for the Best Debut Actor. Esha's latest film was ‘Tell me O Kkhuda.’


Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

India pledges $10 bn to IMF for Eurozone Dear Financial Voice Reader, Britain needs more entrepreneurs says the Government. The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor reported that in 2010, about 5% of people in the UK aged 18 to 24 said they expected to start a business in the next two to three years. TV shows about entrepreneurship are very popular. The Indian sub-continent community and readers of this paper are renowned for their entrepreneurship. So we have a role to play. I am going to in this column speak as much about entrepreneurship as about finance in future. I get asked by a dozen people a week if i have ideas what they should do with their lives. Here are my top rules relating in part to being entrepreneurial. 1. surf for job titles that sound good 2. go to careers advisory sites online 3. look at online psychometric job search tests to see what you’d be happy doing 4. look in FT to see which companies are making money and apply to them 5. what do you enjoy, that can make money, that there is someone willing to pay you for, that you have resources to start or applying for? 6. Or plan for stepping stones ie go to the job before the job you really want, which will take you to that job. 7. go to angel investor events such and meet start-ups 8. Google search by location and job title eg ‘author london publisher’

RBI stuns, keeps rates steady as growth crumbles The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) left interest rates and the cash reserve ratio (CRR) unchanged on Monday, defying widespread expectations for a rate cut and warning that relaxing policy could worsen inflation. Bonds, stocks and the rupee all fell. The RBI kept its policy repo rate unchanged at 8 per cent and left the CRR for banks at 4.75 per cent, putting the onus on the government to take measures to revive flagging economic growth. "Further reduction in the policy interest rate at this juncture, rather than supporting growth, could exacerbate inflationary pressures," the RBI wrote in its mid-quarter policy review. The benchmark 10year bond yield rose 9 basis points to 8.43 per cent from levels before the announcement, while the new 10-year bond yield rose about 5 basis points. The Sensex erased gains before the decision to fall 1.1 per cent, while the rupee weakened against the dollar to 55.60/62 from around 55.35-55.40 before the

decision. "The Reserve Bank of India's action is clearly disappointing," said Sujan Hajra, chief economist at Anand Rathi Securities in Mumbai. "Inflation remains a concern, but the slowing growth needed at least a 50-basis-point rate cut. The RBI will have to ease sooner or later, otherwise there will be further challenges to growth," he said. After cutting its policy rate by 50 basis points in April, the RBI had been widely expected to leave rates unchanged in June. But global and domestic economic conditions have deteriorated sharply since then, driving expectations that India would cut both interest rates and the cash reserve ratio. India's March quarter economic growth of 5.3 per cent was far worse than expected and the weakest annual pace in nine years. The data sparked calls from industry for immediate action to lift an economy that Standard & Poor's says could be the first BRIC nation to lose its investment-level credit rating.

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has given hope that the debt-laden country will stay in the Eurozone and take up critical reforms. "We wish them well and are encouraged by the early statements of intent." He, nevertheless, said the crisis in Eurozone remained worrying, as it was pulling down even emerging economies such as India and China, which were earlier on a high growth path. "This calls for policy action on several fronts. Of greatest concern at present is the uncertainty affecting the Eurozone. The sovereign debt crisis and the banking crisis now on the horizon have grave implications for the health of the entire global economy." Mr Singh again laid emphasis on infrastructure investment as he had in earlier G20 Summits, saying less developed and emerging economies were also

facing serious problems because of the global crisis. "Infrastructure investment in developing countries assumes special importance in this context. It lays the foundation for rapid growth in the longer term, while providing an immediate Manmohan Singh meeting Mexican President at G-20 Summit. stimulus for their economies and also for the targets, he said. global economy, by providMr Singh said while ing a robust source of the performance of the demand." Indian economy, now But more infrastrucgrowing at 6.9 per cent as ture investment in develagainst 8.4 per cent in oping world is only possi2010-11, may look good to ble if they get access to the world outside, it was not enough and that citilong-term capital, he said, zens expected more. "Yet adding: "Multilateral development banks can play a the fundamentals of the major role in this context." Indian economy remain strong and we are confiEfforts were underway in India to spruce up infradent of bringing back the rhythm of high growth of structure with massive investment and ambitious 8-9 per cent per annum."

Following recent suggestions made to the BBC by Hector Sants, the outgoing chief of the UK’s Financial Services Authority (FSA), that the ‘run’ on Northern Rock (NR) could have been “preventable”, the Bradford & Bingley Shareholder Action Group (BBAG) has moved to reiterate calls for an independent public inquiry into what it regards as the “deeply flawed” B&B nationalisation. If a ‘run’ on Northern Rock was potentially preventable if certain advice had been followed by the UK authorities, then what of Bradford & Bingley. The BBAG has been arguing for satisfactory explanations over the B&B nation-

alisation, which took place in September 2008. To date no such inquiry has been sanctioned. And, around one million shareholders - many of them pensioners who ploughed sizeable amounts of their savings into B&B shares have been left with zilch. Furthermore, efforts by many hundreds - if not thousands - of B&B shareholders over the past months under the ‘Freedom of Information Act’ (‘FoI’ Act) to seeking information from the time of nationalisation (letters, emails, etc.) from several UK Government departments has yielded a total blank. It’s certainly not for the want of trying. According to the BBAG, the group fighting for ‘fair’ compensation for those on the receiving end of such roughshod treatment, both HM Treasury and the Cabinet Office have declined ‘FoI’ requests on grounds of: (a) Documents requested cannot be found; and/or, (b) They are ‘too costly’ to provide. A neutral might regard

this as simply delaying tactics or obfuscation. The issue now lies before the Information Commissioner for a decision. The nationalisation of B&B was perhaps the ‘most inglorious’ event during the UK banking crisis of recent years. But argues David Blundell, BBAG Chairman, Hector Sants’ failure to mention the FSA’s role in this matter might suggest this is “selective memory syndrome.” Retracing events from 2008, officers of the FSA and Messrs Kent and Pym, respective B&B chairman and chief executive, were reassuring the public just days prior to the nationalisation. Since then the Government and tripartite regulatory authorities appear to have repeatedly failed to provide details of the sequence of events prior to B&B’s nationalisation - often resorting to what BBAG claims is “subterfuge”. In respect of the Cabinet Office the BBAG chairman asserts it is tantamount to “a direct lie”.

HDFC bank will be hosting the 'India Homes Fair', a property exhibition which is aimed at the NonResident Indian (NRI) audience. The event will take place on 23 and 24 June 2012 at the Hilton London Metropole, 225 Edgware Road, London. There will be over 37 leading developers with a vast array of properties across prime locations in India such as New Delhi, Chennai, Mumbai, Goa, Hyderabad and Gujarat. The doors for visitors will be open from 10 am to 7 pm. There will be over 300

projects on display and there will be options on flats and villas. Customers can choose from a wide range of properties starting with Rs 2000,000 (Pound 25,000) to premium properties up to Rs 100 million (pound 1.2 million) with sizes ranging between 400 sq. ft. to 6,000 sq. ft. In addition, one can get exclusive offers and value-added benefits during these two days of the exhibition. Ms Renu Sud Karnad, Managing Director, HDFC Ltd. said: “At HDFC, we encourage home ownership and our attempt has

India on Monday pledged $10 billion to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to help Eurozone countries out of the current crisis and prevent adverse fallout on emerging economies. "The International Monetary Fund has a critical, supportive role to play in stabilizing the Eurozone. All members must help the fund to play this role," Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh told the G20 Summit at Los Cabos, Mexico. "I am happy to announce India has decided to contribute $10 billion to IMF's additional firewall of $430 billion," he said, also appealing to countries with surpluses such as China to make similar contributions. Mr Singh began by congratulating the new government in Greece that is about to take office, as it

B&B shareholders have ‘fight’ on their hands gaining public inquiry

By Roger Aitken

India Homes Fair

always been to bring developer's offerings under one roof, in order to provide maximum choice and convenience to our customers This property event in London presents an opportunity for customers to meet directly with the developers and know what they can expect without having to make the trip back to India in person. The reason why property prices are still affordable, despite steady increase in property prices over the years, is that income levels have also risen during this period along with added tax ben-

Some contend too that at the time of B&B’s nationalisation the bank had “one of the strongest” balance sheets relatively out of a number of UK banks - Northern Rock among them. Yet it would appear that Hector Sants failed to raise this point. And, according to the BBAG that might well suggest that the outgoing FSA head recognises the management of the banking crisis has been an “abject failure” for which the Government and the tripartite regulatory authorities are responsible. The BBAG believes that Mr Sants’ intervention strengthens the view that the B&B nationalisation decision was deeply flawed and “made in haste” for political reasons. In so doing it unnecessarily disadvantaged a million B&B shareholders and investors, who have been one of the most obvious victims of the banking crisis. Calls for an independent public inquiry therefore have their merits.

efits on housing loans, so it is always an opportune time to invest in property back home.” “HDFC has had a presence in London for over 5 years to serve the NRI and PIO community and fulfil their housing finance needs, HDFC is the one stop shop for all home loan solutions,” she added. HDFC’s India Homes Fair 2012 23rd and 24th June 2012 Hilton London Metropole 225 Edgware Road, London W2 1JU Tel: 020 7872 5536 /40 Timings: 10 am to 7 pm. Entry: Free of Charge.


Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012


Pension Vs Property

Suresh Vagjiani Sow & Reap A Property Investment Company

We recently had a pharmacist come to see us who wanted to start to invest in property. We have had many pharmacists and doctors invest with us, perhaps because regardless of the economic climate two things don’t change, people still get ill and end up dying! And so rain or shine these two professions are still making money, although the pharmacists tend to complain the industry is not as profitable as it once was. The main aim of investing in property for our pharmacist is to develop a secondary source of income. Partly so he can reduce his hours of work and be more adventurous with his time and partly to develop a retirement income. The property would therefore need to be a high yielding one so that after mortgage and other expenses he would be left with a solid income. We coincidently had just the right property for him. It’s an ex council property with five bedrooms close to Caledonian Rd station priced at £340,000. The comparables for this property were over the £400,000 mark and the current rental income is £525pw. Once minor updating has been done to the property it should achieve £650pw leaving over £15,000 after expenses. The location of this property would ensure the future growth prospects are strong. Even if we assume a zero growth rate the yield ensures this is still a good investment. So it’s a no brainer. The money he had saved up was not working for him hence he wanted to put the money to work for him.

Most of the time money in the bank is actually depreciating - when you consider the rate of inflation against the often paltry rates of interest th e bank is paying currently. The number of people these days who have faith in private or company pension policies is dwindling. This sentiment extends to the NHS and the public education system to provide for their children. This is leading to a trend where many are taking control of their financial future by purchasing properties to secure their future and that of their next generation. If you consider pension policies you will discover that intrinsically they have very unfair terms. One example is after having saved up all one’s life and contributed to their policy, if the policy holder were to die without leaving a spouse the policy would revert back to the scheme, what this means is they get nothing after saving all their life and they cannot pass on the lump to someone else as they would with another asset. If they have a spouse then normally 50% of the income is passed onto them. Normally an asset would form part of one’s estate and be passed on as inheritance, in the situation of a pension policy it would disappear in the event there is no spouse, and even if there is why should only 50% be passed on? Another point is regarding a company scheme, when a pension becomes overfunded the excess is given back to the employer, this could be the reward you get if you contribute fully to the scheme and if your pension performs too well. However if the policy is underfunded a few years down the line because it doesn't do so well, you will need to top it up to meet the target benefits so it seems this is only a one way street! We have only looked at a couple of points in a pension policy very quickly. If we now consider the variety of charges associated with a pension policy such as Annual management fee, bid/offer spread, market value adjustment etc all these clever words are all saying the same thing: we take money from your pot and put it in our pockets.

The Real Deal Price: £250,000 This well proportioned one bedroom flat which is located on the fourth floor of a purpose-built apartment building offers great living space in a fantastic residential area close to a range of local shops and amenities. The property comprises of a well proportioned reception room, a spacious kitchen with breakfast area, a bright bedroom with windows on two aspects and a bathroom. Location: Morris House benefits from its proximity to the shops and amenities of Paddington and Maida Vale while the closest transport links are Marylebone Station (Bakerloo line and National Rail Services) and Edgware Road Station (Bakerloo line). Leasehold: Over 100 years Service charge: £550 per annum (2011) An extremely hot deal, the angle is to convert the property, rent it out as a two bed at £380pw. We have just done another one in the same block and you only pay 1% in Stamp duty

It is no wonder then that membership of work place pension schemes has fallen to less than 50% and only one third of the private sector are enrolled in one according to recent figures provided by the Office for National Statistics. I have had some experience in the pensions industry, after leaving university my job was involved with working out the losses made from investors switching from company pension schemes to private ones. The losses would be worked out retrospectively and prospectively meaning past losses which are known, and anticipated future loses would be estimated with assumptions. These were caused by Financial Advisors who advised clients to move from their steady and safe final salary company schemes to the rocketing private schemes which where tracking the rising FTSE. This didn’t last forever and when the FTSE fell so did their pension values, hence the pension review which led to financial firms compensating clients for their advice. The point being is the advisors didn't really understand what they were selling. They just wanted their big commissions which were based on a percentage of the funds they transferred across. Even after spending some years working on the calculations side in this field I still did not understand pension polices. I just knew they were a lot more complicated to understand than they seemed at face value. Many who claim to know do not, as both the calculations and the laws around them end up being very complicated. In essence a pension is a lump of money which you contribute too, and when it is time to draw down on this fund, normally at retirement, an annuity is purchased which means you start getting a monthly income. The contributions are tax free but the monthly income post retirement is taxable. As mentioned this stream gets halved on death if your spouse survives you, otherwise it disappears. This can be compared to purchasing a property. When you buy a property you exchange a lump sum for a physical asset which provides you with a monthly income. We will assume there is no mortgage to keep things simple. The difference is you can understand the expenses, they will probably be maintenance and management charges and the income will be in the form of rent. The asset and the rental income will be passed wholly to whomever you choose as long as it’s below the Inheritance tax threshold. The property is in your name not some third party. You’re in control. Question: Why would someone take out a pension policy in the first place? The only incentive I can think of is the tax kick back on the way in. On the way out they get taxed as per normal, the overriding point here is they will lose half the asset when they die if not the whole lump. The probable reason is because their IFA told them to do so - he doesn't get paid if he advises you to purchase a property. If you follow the money trail the chances are you will find the reasons why. To recap, the advantages of property over a pension policy are: you understand the income and outgo, the property is in your own name so you are in control, you can get the income when you choose and not according to the scheme rules. It forms part of your estate so when you die it is passed on in whole to whomever you chose. The pension on the other hand could disappear on death. The down side of property is the possible of loss of rent and the hassle factor involved in managing a property. This can be neutralised by buying well, having a good managing agent and being choosy with the tenant. Proper advice should be taken from a pension specialist in regards to your pension policy. We have only given a very brief overview and are no experts in this field.

We provide a turnkey solution. Contact us now:

Specialists in Central London Property Sourcing

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

Tips of the Week l One source of getting funds to invest in property is your own home, this can be a very tax efficient way of investing as the interest element of the deposit can also be offset against rental income. l People are often surprised with how much property they can purchase, £100,000 will buy you £400,000 of property, this is through the principle of gearing.


financial vOICE

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

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

Delay Can Be Dangerous

Maria Fernandes

The next target: families Who said the press no longer wield any power? The long awaited rules on families are finally out, not announced to Parliament but to Andrew Marr in his Sunday programme and to the newspapers where it made headlines. So much for democracy. The new regulations are extremely long winded and incomprehensible in parts and I find myself wanting to hang my coat and take off to sunnier climes. Spouses: Those married for 4 years or more will no longer get any concessionary treatment. All applicants will get 5 years in 3 tranches multiplying the amount of fees that can be extracted from the applicant. The 5 year point is dangerous territory because it is usually the point at which husband and wife want to bump each other off. The financial requirement is earnings of £18,600 for one person, £3,800 for the first child and £2,400 for each additional child. A family with two children would have to show earnings of £27,200. Extended families are not allowed to help with support although they can offer accommodation. Savings

Rajat Gupta convicted of insider trading Rajat Gupta, one of the most successful Indian Americans on Wall Street, was found guilty of passing confidential market information to Galleon hedge fund founder Raj Rajaratnam in one of America's biggest insider trading cases. A Manhattan court held the 63-year-old former Goldman Sachs director guilty of providing insider information to his former friend, Mr. Rajaratnam, who was sentenced last year to 11 years in prison for insider trading. Mr. Gupta was found guilty on four counts out of six charges. Prosecutors had accused Mr Gupta of providing market-moving information to Mr Rajaratnam while serving on the board of Goldman Sachs and heading McKinsey&Co.

of human rights which the Government believe has been abused. The detail provided is more conciliatory and suggests that the criteria that are being introduced into the main body of legislation are designed to meet an Article 8 threshold. There will be a debate on this in Parliament. Applicants will be granted 10 years before they can qualify for settlement. According to the UKBA private life will only exist after 20 years of residence. There are differing periods of residence for children under 18 (7 years) and young adults between18 and 25 who will need to have spent at least half their life in the UK. In essence the long residence rule which grants leave after 14 years is being replaced by the 20 year rule. It is in the area of human rights that there is likely to be an almighty clash with the judiciary. Maria Fernandes has been in practice exclusively in immigration for the past 25 years. Fernandes Vaz is based at 87 Wembley Hill Road, Wembley and can be contacted by telephone on 02087330123 or via email on

of over £16,000 will be able to be used. The English Test: For those struggling with the Life in the UK Test things have just got 100 times worse. There will be an additional test for speaking and listening. I wonder if there will be an option to speak in cockney slang, necessary for living in some parts of London. Dependant parents and grandparents: The rule regarding this will be completely revamped. Aunts and uncles will no longer qualify (not that many did in fact). This class will only qualify if they can demonstrate through medical evidence that as a result of age, illness or disability they require long term personal care and that the applicant is unable even with practical and financial help of the sponsor to obtain the level in their country. Applicants can only make such applications abroad. This rule, already very difficult in its present form, will be impossible under the new changes. Human rights: This particular change was declared with triumph as a means of taking control

Marks & Spencer & HSBC link up to open retail banks 1996 by setting up excluRecently I received an

sive online banking. Today it is a global enterprise with over 20 million customers in nine countries. It is called ING Direct. Time is ripe to set up a retail banking model that serves only employees and/or self-employed whose income and/or revenue is up to a maximum of the national average that can move every year. Each country would have their national moving average. “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” [George Bernard Shaw].

annual loan statement from Marks & Spencer Money: opening balance, the 12 repayments and closing balance; no entries for annual interest charged except to state APR 6%. In this country, it seems anything goes: start selling clothes, then get into groceries; credit cards; lending and now banking. It is becoming like a banking jungle supported by bank bailouts. What is needed is a new model in retail banking; not more of the same by today’s money-hungry financial institutions. Founder Arkadi Kuhlmann and Brand Consultant Bruce Philip found a new model in

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This week the leaders of the worlds 20 largest economies met in Mexico to discuss amongst other things the state of the global economy. During an interview David Cameron stated that it was important for leaders to take decisive action to reduce budget deficits and that ‘delay can be dangerous’. This is a critical lesson for all leaders. Throughout history there has been a plethora of examples of how the reluctance to act in timely manner has led to failure or destruction. For example, in the years before World War 2, if the European leaders turned a blind eye while Hitler built his Nazi army, had stood up to him earlier they could have saved over 50 million lives. Delay can be dangerous. Perhaps this would explain why some business leaders are quick to make reductions to the workforce in order to maintain the profit margin? Or why the previous government stepped in so quickly to save the banks from going bankrupt? Could this be the influence

behind Nick Clegg almost immediately agreed to join the Tories to form the coalition. We know that this is why the current government slashed virtually every budget they could as soon as they got into power. It is certainly possible that each of those can be given some rationale about how if these actions had not been taken promptly then the consequences would have been much worse. But there is another factor which may have influenced these decisions. Most of the decisions listed above affected others but not the leaders who actually made the decision. Is it not ironic that every time a decision is made that will have a negative impact on peoples lives we are told that it was a ‘difficult decision’ and that ‘despite trying to find a better alternative there really was not other way’? A leaders’ first responsibility is to the people they lead and that too, all of the people and not just a select few. And that is why, when it comes to making

By Amit Patel

decisions that are going to affect the livelihoods of the people who have supported and worked for you, it is your responsibility to take some time, not at your leisure, but to still try and find or develop a better alternative. When Nelson Mandela became the first black president of South Africa, he didn’t call for every symbol and reminder of white rule to be eradicated. Rather he preached patience and integration. And in doing so he saved South Africa all over again. A good rule of thumb is – ‘Delay can be dangerous when you are trying to fix something that is broken, but when dealing with people, patience is a virtue’. Amit Patel has over 15 years experience in the field of Personal Development and Human Resource Management. He has delivered speeches on People Management and Development throughout Europe, North America, and Asia. To contact Amit, email him at

Fitch downgrades India’s credit rating outlook to negative Within three months of Standard & Poor’s action in April and its follow-up threat last week, global rating agency Fitch, on Monday, scaled down India’s sovereign credit outlook to ‘negative’ from ‘stable’ while citing much the same reasons as S&P corruption and the absence of or inadequate reforms. However, unlike in the case of S&P’s strictures when the government appeared to go on the defensive, India’s finance minister Pranab Mukherjee junked the downgrade saying that the rating agencies’ observations were based on “old data” and did not reflect the recent developments. In a statement, pointing out that the revision in rating outlook by Fitch to the lowest investment grade notch was because it had ignored the recent positive economic trends, Mr Mukherjee said:

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oulook, Fitch Ratings, in a statement, said that India was faced with an “awkward combination” of slow growth and elevated inflation as well as structural challenges surrounding its investment climate in the form of corruption and inadequate economic reforms.

“While the markets had already anticipated that Fitch would revise the outlook and so there is no surprise in the announcement, it must be pointed out that Fitch has primarily relied on older data, and has ignored the recent positive trends in the Indian economy.” Chief economic advisor Kaushik Basu, on the other hand, dubbed Fitch’s action as “herd mentality” and expressed no surprise over the outlook downgrade. “There is a herd mentality among policymakers and among corporates. There is also little bit of herding among credit rating agencies. We were pretty much expecting Fitch to do so,” he said. He, however, admitted that even while there was some deep strength in the country, “there is lot to be done. I think that the next six months will be crucial,” he said. Announcing the lowering of sovereign rating


Outlook for PSUs Fitch went on to point out that the revision in outlook reflected the “heightened risks” that India’s medium-to-longterm growth potential would gradually deteriorate if further structural reforms are not hastened, including measures to enhance the effectiveness of the government and create a more positive operational environment for business and private investments. It, however, retained India’s sovereign rating at ‘BBB-’, a notch above the speculative grade.

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financial VOICE

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012


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

Greece Elections - Euro granted a stay of execution This week’s trading was heavily geared towards the Greece elections and they did not fail to disappoint, with a nail-biting finish, which saw the Euro granted a stay of execution. The International Monetary Fund, one of the three bodies responsible for Greece’s bailout, said it will “stand ready to engage with the new government� to restore financial stability. Figures showed the Probailout party squeezed out a small victory with the New Democracy party claiming 29.7% of the votes ahead of its main competitor Syrizia with a 26.9% of the votes respectively. New Democracy will form a likely coalition with the socialist Greek party PASOK (12.3%). Political group Syriza was the surprised package from the elections. Alexis Tsipras, the party’s economically illiterate, ex-communist 37-year old leader, has taken Syriza from 4.6% of the vote in 2009 to 27.1 %today. And if Syriza falls back, the danger is that the fascist Golden Dawn party will gain even more seats next time. Although seen as a ‘posi-

tive move’ a Greek exit has merely been delayed, not prevented; the inevitable. Greece’s budget deficit remains too high and its unit labour costs still need to fall by 30-40 per cent if it is to become competitive again; but given that there is no appetite to slash wages by a significant amount, unemployment will continue to rise. With the likes of Spain and Italy waiting in the wings it seems this is a ticking time bomb. Even on the most optimistic set

of projections, the Greek economy will remain crippled by an unsustainable national debt, given the rate at which GBP has been shirking, the debt will never be brought under control and many more billions will be wasted trying to plug a hole darker than the abyss. UK economy was once again under the spotlight this week regarding its asset purchasing program and fuelling speculation a further stimulus is required. Governor King said

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in a key note speech that the Euro zone was casting a ‘black cloud’ over the UK economy, making a case for more Quantitative Easing (QE). He also touched upon the Bank of England would also provide cheap long-term funding to banks to encourage them to lend to businesses and consumers, in attempt to boost growth in the economy. On the other side of the pond, U.S. retail sales data reflected a unexpected decline, by a seasonally adjusted 0.2% in May, falling for the second successive month which marked the first back-to-backdecline in two years. Signs of faltering growth amid European debt turmoil, combined with inflation below the central bank’s 2% target, mean the Fed will announce new steps to boost the economy as soon as a meeting this week, according to 12 of the 21 primary dealers who trade with the central bank. The remainder don’t expect action and some of the nine firms say that yields near all-time lows limit the effectiveness of more measures by policy makers.

Weekly Currencies As of Tuesday 19th June 2012 @ 11.30pm GBP - INR = 87.64 USD - INR = 55.94 EUR - INR = 70.59 GBP - USD = 1.59 GBP - EUR = 1.24 EUR - USD = 1.26 GBP - AED = 4.64 GBP - CAD = 1.29 GBP - NZD = 1.59 GBP - AUD = 1.54 GBP - ZAR = 12.94 GBP - HUF = 358.47 Information provided by RationalFX. None of the information on this page constitutes, nor should be construed as financial advice. The exchange rates used are the commercial foreign exchange rates provided by RationalFX. For a live quote or to find out more about how RationalFX can help you, call us on 0207 220 8181.



Pakistan-BangLadesH-sRi Lanka

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Political uncertainty in Pak as SC disqualifies Gilani In Focus Islamabad: Pakistan plunged into a fresh spell of political uncertainty after the country's supreme court ruled that Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani stood disqualified since his conviction for contempt and asked President Asif Ali Zardari to appoint a new premier. A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry issued the verdict in response to several petitions that had challenged National Assembly Speaker Fehmida Mirza's decision not to disqualify Gilani following his conviction nearly two months ago. The bench further ruled that the post of premier had been vacant since April 26, when another seven-judge

bench had convicted Gilani of contempt for refusing to reopen graft cases in Switzerland against President Zardari. The bench directed the election commission to issue a notification stating that Gilani, 60, was no longer a member of parliament.

In response to a demand from a petitioner that the court should direct the President to order the election of a new premier, the bench asked Zardari to act according to the Constitution for the continuation of democracy. The apex court's ruling had been expected in political circles for some time. The government refused to act, saying the President enjoyed immunity from prosecution in Pakistan and abroad. Matters reached a head when the apex court charged Gilani with contempt for refusing to act on its orders earlier this year. Gilani was convicted and given a symbolic sentence of less than a minute on April 26. Gilani refused to resign

even though the apex court had said at the time that his conviction could lead to his disqualification. The Speaker last month ruled out the disqualification of Gilani following his conviction, saying he had not been charged with acting in a manner prejudicial to the integrity or independence of the judiciary. In a related development, the top leadership of the PPP gathered in the presidency for an emergency meeting chaired by Zardari, the cochairman of the party, and his son, party chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari. The meeting discussed the options available to the government following the apex court's ruling, sources said.

Memogate: Pak probe panel Pakistan ranks 13 in failed states index nails ‘not loyal’ Haqqani

Islamabad: A Pakistani judicial commission has concluded that the country's former ambassador to the US, Husain Haqqani, was behind a mysterious memo that sought US help to stave off a feared coup and said he was "not loyal" to the country while serving as an envoy. The Supreme Courtappointed commission's findings were made public as a nine-judge bench headed by chief justice Iftikhar Chaudhry began examining the panel's report. After the sealed report was presented to the bench, the CJ asked attorney general Irfan Qadir to read out its recommendations. The report said Haqqani was "not loyal" to Pakistan while serving as the envoy in the US and had sought to undermine the security of the country's nuclear assets, the armed forces, the Inter-Services Intelligence and the Constitution. The panel further concluded that the alleged memo was authentic and was drafted on Haqqani's

Lanka's former army chief vows to topple Rajapaksa govt Colombo: Sri Lanka's former army chief Sarath Fonseka said that he aimed to topple the government and create a new political culture, ruling out any possibility of working with President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Speaking at the first press conference since his conditional release from jail on May 12, Fonseka was upbeat about his role and insisted that he would work with a common opposition to defeat the government, Xinhua reported. "There is a corrupt government and a corrupt political culture so we have to first get rid of the corrupt government. If we want to benefit from the new political culture I am talking about, we will have to topple the government and then we have to come into power and implement this new political culture," he said.

Husain Haqqani

instructions. It concluded that Haqqani had sought United States' support through the memo and that he had wanted to head a new national security set-up. Ex-envoy smells political motive Haqqani dismissed the memo panel's report claiming the findings were made public to divert the attention from "more embarrassing developments". "The entire proceeding reflected the political machination of ideological elements including the judiciary and had little to do with fact finding," he said.

Washington: Pakistan, a country which is run by a military obsessed with India and by a civilian elite that steals all it can and pay almost no taxes, has been ranked 13th in the latest ranking of failed states. The unique ranking compiled by the prestigious Foreign Policy magazine is topped by African countries Somalia (114.9 points), Congo (111.2), Sudan (109.4), Chad (107.6) and Zimbabwe (106.3). Afghanistan with 106 points is ranked at number 6, followed by Haiti, Yemen, Iraq and Central African Republic. Pakistan with 101.6 points, the magazine said, is ranked 13, a slight improvement from the previous two years. In 2011 it was ranked 12th in the list of failed states, while in 2010 and 2009 it was ranked 10th. "The country is run by a military obsessed with - and, for decades, invested in - the conflict with India, and by a civilian elite that steals all it can and pays almost no taxes,"

Robert D Kaplan, the chief geopolitical analyst at Stratfor, wrote for the Foreign Policy. But despite an overbearing military, tribes "defined by a near-universal male participation in organized violence," as the late European anthropologist Ernest Gellner put it, dominate massive swaths of territory. The absence of the state makes for 20-hour daily electricity blackouts and an almost nonexistent education system in many areas," he wrote. Explaining the reasons for Pakistan being in the list of a failed state, Kaplan said the root cause of these manifold failures, in many minds, is the very artificiality of Pakistan itself: a cartographic puzzle piece sandwiched between India and Central Asia that splits apart what the British Empire ruled as one indivisible subcontinent.

Taliban praise India for resisting Afghan entanglement Kabul: India has done well to resist US calls for greater involvement in Afghanistan, the Taliban said in a rare direct comment about one of the strongest opponents of the hardline Islamist group that was ousted from power in 2001. The Taliban also said they won't let Afghanistan be used as a base against another country, addressing fears in New Delhi that Pakistanbased anti-India militants may become more emboldened if the Taliban return to power. The Afghan Taliban have longstanding ties to Pakistan and striking a softer tone towards its arch rival India could be a sign of a more independent course. Direct talks with the United States which have since been suspended - and an agreement to open a Taliban office in Qatar to conduct formal peace talks have been seen as signs of a more assertive stance.

US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta this month encouraged India to take a more active role in Afghanistan as most foreign combat troops leave in 2014. The Taliban said Panetta had failed. "He spent three days in India to transfer the heavy burden to their shoulders, to find an exit, and to flee from Afghanistan," the group said on its English website. "Some reliable media sources said that the Indian authorities did not pay heed to (US) demands and showed their reservations, because the Indians know or they should know that the Americans are grinding their own axe." There had been no assurance for the Americans, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said. "It shows that India understands the facts," he said. India is one of the biggest

donors in Afghanistan, spending about $2 billion on projects ranging from the construction of highways to the building of the Afghan parliament. It has also won an iron ore concession in a $11 billion investment. But New Delhi has avoided involvement in bolstering Afghan security, except for running courses for small groups of Afghan army officers at military institutions in India. "No doubt that India is a significant country in the region, but is also worth mentioning that they have full information about Afghanistan because they know each other very well in the long history," the Taliban said. "They are aware of the Afghan aspirations, creeds and love for freedom. It is totally illogical they should plunge their nation into a calamity just for the American pleasure."

Ghazal maestro Mehdi Hassan passes away in Karachi

Karachi: Mehdi Hassan, the Indiaborn Pakistani ghazal maestro, passed away at a Karachi hospital after a prolonged illness. He was 84. His son Arif told that his father died of breathing complications at a private nursing home in Karachi. The ghazal king had been discharged from hospital only last month. He was back in hospital only a day later but was not put on a ventilator. "My father has been ill for the last 12 years but this year, his condition has deteriorated significantly," said Arif. "He was released from hospital for just one day before being admitted again." Hassan, who has a huge fan following all over the world, had been suffering from lung, chest and urinary tract ailments for the past many years. Hassan leaves behind his nine sons and five daughters. He married twice. Both his wives are dead.

Car bomb kills 13 in northwest Pakistan Peshawar: A bomb planted in a pickup truck killed at least 13 people at a market in northwest Pakistan. The target in the town of Landi Kotal appeared to be a tribal leader allied with the government against the Pakistani Taliban, security officials said. They had earlier said a car bomb had caused the explosion. Hospital officials said 34 people were wounded. There was no immediate claim of responsibility. One security official said a suicide bomber connected with the attack began wandering around the town shortly after the explosion.

Journalist stabbed to death in Bangladesh Dhaka: Bangladeshi police say that unidentified men have stabbed a journalist to death apparently for his reports on the illegal drug trade in south-western Bangladesh. Local police chief A.K.M. Faruk Hossain said that the attack on Zamal Uddin took place late Friday at Kashipur Bazar in Jessore district bordering India. The area is 140 km west of the capital, Dhaka. Uddin worked for the Bengali-language daily Gramer Kagoj. The police chief says Uddin had recently filed a complaint with police seeking security after he was threatened for his articles on the illicit drug trade.

Pak SC disqualifies 3 lawmakers for holding dual nationality Islamabad: The Supreme Court in Pakistan has suspended the membership of three lawmakers of provincial assemblies for possessing dual nationality days after it took similar action against senior Pakistan People's Party leaders Rehman Malik and Farahnaz Ispahani. A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry, which is hearing a petition seeking the disqualification of lawmakers with dual nationality, suspended the membership of legislators Amna Buttar and Muhammad Akhlaq, both members of the Punjab Assembly, and Ahmed Ali Shah, a member of the Sindh Assembly. "Prima facie we are satisfied that they are not qualified to hold the membership of provincial assemblies. Therefore their status as member of provincial assemblies of Punjab and Sindh is hereby suspended," the apex court said in an order.

Pashto singer and her father shot dead in Pakistan

Islamabad: Well-known Pashto singer Ghazala Javed and her father were shot and killed by unidentified men in Peshawar city of northwest Pakistan, police said. The men fired indiscriminately at Javed and her father Mohammad Javed while she was leaving a beauty parlour at the busy Mohallah Nau in Dabgari Bazar on Monday night, the singer's relatives told police. The singer's younger sister, Farhat Bibi, escaped unhurt. The attackers, who were riding motorcycles, escaped after the shooting.

woRld 23

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

In Focus Yale names IIM Ahmedabad alumnus to top post

Pennsylvania: The Yale School of Management has appointed Indian American professor Anjani Jain as senior associate dean for the full-time MBA programme as part of the school's expansion programme. Jain, an Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, graduate who has served in multiple leadership roles at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, will join Yale on July 1, Dean Edward A. Snyder announced. "Anjani is highly motivated by Yale SOM's mission to educate leaders for business and society, and I am confident he will make important contributions as the school continues to grow in scope and influence," Snyder said.

Indian-American picked for 2nd highest US court

Washington: US President Barack Obama nominated India-born legal luminary Srikanth Srinivasan to the Federal Court of Appeals, the highest ever judicial appointment of an Indian-American in the US and a powerful reminder of the extraordinary strides the community has made while deeply integrating into American society. The nomination, which will have to be confirmed by the US Senate, puts an IndianAmerican in one of the most powerful positions in the American judicial system, since the US Court of Appeals sets legal precedent in regions that cover millions of people.

Iraq bombs kill 70 Shi'ite pilgrims

Baghdad: Bombers struck at Shi'ite pilgrims celebrating a religious festival in Baghdad and across Iraq killing more than 70 people in one of the bloodiest days since the last US troops left the country in December. The bombings appeared to be the work of Sunni insurgents who often hit Shi'ite targets to try to reignite the intercommunal violence that killed tens of thousands of people in 2006-2007.

India seeks access to Headley, Rana

Washington: As India and the US reiterated their commitment to bringing to justice the perpetrators of the November 2008 Mumbai terror attack, India sought access to two key plotters David Coleman Headley and Tahawwur Hussain Rana. Both Headley, son of a Pakistani father and an American mother who changed his given name of Syed Daood Gilani to scout targets for the 26/11 attack for Pakistan-based terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), and his boyhood friend Rana

who provided him the cover of his travel business, are currently in a Chicago jail. "India's interest in further access to Headley and Rana, in accordance with our legal procedures," for the investigations into the Mumbai

investigations and trials relating to that attack." Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who co-chaired the dialogue, said the two countries are sharing information related to terrorism and other related issues. "With respect to information-sharing it is our policy and practice to share information, and we do that," she said declining to go into details. A Chicago court last week dismissed a retrial plea by Rana and set his sentencing for Dec 4. But the sentencing of Headley is yet to be announced.

attack was raised during the just concluded India-US strategic dialogue, India’s external affairs minister S M Krishna said. Asked if India had sought the extradition of Headley and Rana, he said: "We are looking for access right now. We will discuss the next steps after that." The joint statement issued after the dialogue also "reiterated their commitment to bringing to justice the perpetrators of the Mumbai terror attack in November 2008 and to comprehensive sharing of information on the

Egypt Islamists claim presidency, army grabs powers Cairo: Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood said on Monday its candidate won the country's first free presidential election, but a sweeping legal manoeuvre overnight by Cairo's military rulers made clear the generals planned to keep control for now. An election committee source said that Islamist Mohamed Morsy, a US-educated engineer, was comfortably ahead of former air force general Ahmed Shafik with most of the votes tallied. But the count, which would make him the first civilian leader in 60 years, had yet to be officially finalised. In any event, however, the new president will be subordinate for some time at least to the military council which

last year pushed fellow officer Mubarak aside to appease street protests. In the latest twist on Egypt's tortuous path from revolution to democracy, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) issued a decree as two days of voting ended on Sunday which set strict limits on the powers of head of state. On the eve of the election, it had already dissolved the Islamist-led parliament. Liberal and Islamist opponents denounced a "military coup". "Military Transfers Power, to Military," ran the ironic headline in independent newspaper alMasry al-Youm. The Brotherhood, however, expressed its joy and defiance on the streets and may

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Oslo: Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi finally received her 1991 Nobel Peace Prize here on Saturday after spending 15 years under house arrest, and said her country's full transformation to democracy was still far off. She said the prize she won while under house arrest 21 years ago helped shatter her sense of isolation and ensured that the world would demand democracy in her military-controlled homeland. She received two standing ovations as she gave her long delayed acceptance speech. The 66-year-old praised the power of her 1991 Nobel honour both for saving her from the depths of personal despair and shining an enduring spotlight on injustices in Myanmar.

challenge moves by the generals that cast doubt on their pledge to hand over to civilian rule by July 1 - a promise supported by Egypt's US and European allies, despite their deep misgivings about the rise of political Islam in the wake of the Arab Spring uprisings across the Middle East. "Thanks be to God who has guided Egypt's people to the path of freedom and democracy, uniting Egyptians for a better future," Morsy, a former political prisoner, said in a victory speech in which he forswore seeking revenge or settling scores. An aide to Shafik, Mubarak's last prime minister, refused to concede defeat and accused Morsy of "hijacking the election."

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Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Cong decimated in Andhra, Jagan’s party wins 15 out of 18 seats Riding on a strong sympathy wave, jailed MP YS Jagan Mohan Reddy's nascent YSR Congress decimated ruling Congress bagging 15 of the 18 assembly seats and one Lok Sabha seat in by-elections in Andhra Pradesh in a showing that could be a political game changer in the state. Congress won just two assembly seats, while main opposition Telugu Desam faced a complete rout drawing a blank in a keenly awaited outcome in which the 39-year-old Kadapa MP is fighting a bitter public battle with the Congress over his father and late chief minister YS Rajsekhara Reddy's political legacy. In the by-polls, touted as the "semi-finals" ahead of the 2014 Assembly elections, the TRS managed to scrape through with a slen-

der margin of 1,562 votes in Parkal, the lone assembly seat in Telangana region, as it faced a close contest from the nominee of the 15month-old YSRCP. With results, the Congress saw its majority reduced to just seven seats having 155 MLAs in a House of 294. The YSRCP tally increased to 17. In the final analysis, the Congress lost 14 seats as it held 16 seats, won in 2009. The other two were won by PRP in 2009 but now fell in the YSRC kitty. The TRS gained one more seat Parkal, thanks to the by-election. YSRC's M

Rajamohan Reddy won the Nellore Lok Sabha seat defeating high-profile T Subbirami Reddy of Congress by a margin of 2,91,745 votes. It was also a loss of face for actor-turnedpolitician K Chiranjeevi as the YSRC wrested the Tirupati assembly seat he vacated upon his election to Rajya Sabha in March. The victory of YSRC was so resounding that the Congress lost deposits in four constituencies though it managed to win two seats, largely on the caste factor. Lodged in the Chanchalguda prison as an undertrial in the disproportionate assets case against him, Jagan sent out a clear warning signal to the Congress that he will be its nemesis in the next elections as people are solidly behind him.

Kumar Yagnik uses failure as a ladder to success Purvi Apurva Shah Success and failure are two sides of a coin. With determination and hard work you can use failure as a ladder to success. That is what Kumar Yagnik did. Kumar who repeatedly failed in his school exams earned the highest credit for mastering 22 foreign languages and getting the honour of youngest scholar at Cambridge in 1993. Ahmedabad-based Kumar was extremely weak in his studies during his school days. He used to fail in all subjects and did not pay any attention towards studies. He was a normal, active child but showed no interest in studies. His parents were welleducated and had a family history of higher education. They wanted him to score more, if not more, at least wanted Kumar to pass the exams. But he did not pay heed their wishes. There was hardly any year where he had passed the exams. As he was in a lower class he was promoted to the higher class every year. Even the warning by the school did not have any effect on him. He continued being a brat, careless child and never bothered to study. His parents and teachers tried every trick to make him study, but they failed in their attempt. He was the weakest child in the school. Finally, to teach him a lesson, his parents asked him to leave the house. After leaving the house, Kumar had no place to live in, so he made the footpath of Kankaria Lake as his home. He had spent almost a year there just gaping at the sky. But as the school had not cancelled his admission, he was still a student of the school. So he continued to attend school in the morn-

ing and the rest of the time worked in a road side lari to earn his daily bread. One day he came in contact with a Christian missionary priest who inspired him lot in life. This priest was his sole support system. He did not go back to his house nor meet his parents for so many years. It was this priest who sent him to Cambridge University. But the scene changed as soon as he landed in Cambridge University, where he unexpectedly achieved success and mastered 22 languages at a very young age. He found the teaching method there very appealing and worked hard to achieve success. In fact, he was honoured as the youngest Linguistic scholar at Cambridge University 1993. He used to get the top scores every year and won a number of scholarships also. While he was studying in Cambridge, during break time he shuttled to India to do graduation in Law. He did graduation and post-graduation simultaneously and scored high marks in both the studies. When he returned to India after his study, he was even honoured by the Prime Minister for being the youngest linguistic scholar. That was when his parents came to know about his achievements. His parents were surprised to know that their dull son had made it so big. Till

then they had no clue about what their son was doing. After reading the success story of their son in newspapers his parents were overwhelmed. That student who did not even pick up basic English language in his school days, is at present the most sought after language interpreter and an expert coach of 22 foreign languages. Right now, he works as a language interpreter to many dignitaries in India and other foreign countries. He is also a linguistic faculty to many institutes all over the world and runs a well-known language institute in his homeland Ahmedabad. His institute is one of its kinds in Asia. He is also a faculty of Indian Institute of Technology. He was also an interpreter of Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi and many other celebrities like Ratan Tata, Mukesh Ambani etc during the Vibrant Gujarat summits when a large number of foreign delegates attended the functions. Today, an ordinary, neglected Indian boy is respected by people across the globe. He says, “The main reason why I was failing in schools in India is the system of teaching and academic approach which never appealed to me, Cambridge educational system made me re-discover my potential and helped me reach the peak of my capabilities.”

In divine light By Rajen Vakil

Bhima in Kubera’s garden It was now time for Bhima to take leave of his elder brother Hanuman. For Bhima it was not only a momentous but an emotional meeting. Hanuman then embraced Bhimasen who felt all his weariness melting away. Then with tears in his eyes Hanuman said, “O Bhima please do not tell anyone that I stay in this place. It is time for you to go. Whenever you need me just think of me and I will help you. It has been many ages since I touched a human form. It reminds of the Lord Rama who took on a human form. I want to give you a boon, please ask for anything. If you say so I will go to Hastinapura, make Duryodhana a prisoner and bring him to you.” Bhima replied, “I want nothing but your grace and that I should remain in your favour.” Hanuman then said, “When you will roar as a lion before battling your enemies I shall fill your roar with my sound too. This will make your enemies tremble even before you attack them. I shall sit atop Arjuna’s flag when his chariot goes into battle and from there I will make terrible sounds which will help Arjuna kill his enemies easily.”

Hanuman then pointed out the path Bhima had to follow and vanished from his sight. Bhima started walking on the road that would lead him to the divine lotuses. His thoughts and emotions were drenched with the romance of meeting Hanuman. He walked through beautiful forests and passed many lovely lakes. The air was filled with the scent and aroma of colourful flowers.

In this way Bhima reached a spot near the abode of lord Shiva called Mount Kailas. Here was Kubera’s secret garden. In this garden there was a beautiful and placid lake full of the golden lotuses that Bhima was seeking. The lake was formed from small streams flowing down the divine mountain. Birds of different colours filled the air with their song and play. The setting was so beautiful that Bhima was full of sur-

prise and happiness. He went into the lake and drank the sweet, cool and nectar like water to his heart’s content. Kubera was the god of the Yakshas and the divine nymphs and this was his personal playground. All the gods and celestial beings treated this place with great homage and worship. The lake was protected by thousands of demons who were the guards of the lord Kubera. These guards saw Bhima bathing in the waters of the lake. They came to him and asked him who he was and how he had come there. Bhima said, “I am the son of Pandu called Bhimasen. Me and my brothers are presently staying at Badrikashram. There a beautiful, golden divine lotus was blown with the wind into the lap of Draupadi, my wife. She wanted more of them and so to please my wife I have come here to gather more lotuses.” The demons were very angry that Bhima had come into the garden without permission. To be continued….

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

Ahmedabad’s slum children to perform in UK Sixteen talented children from Ahmedabad’s Ram Rahim Tekro (slum) will perform a multi-media production in English featuring music, dance, drama and video in UK to present stories that overcome obstacles, illuminating unity regardless of background. Darpana Academy of Performing Arts has directed and developed the programme called Ekatva along with Manav Sadhna, an NGO based at the Gandhi Ashram, and Nimesh Patel, a Business School graduate and a hip-hop artist from the United States. Ekatva, meaning ‘Oneness’, is inspired by the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi, Dr Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela, and raises issues about compassion, the value of service and the potential of individuals to rise above their personal circumstances. Ekatva has been brought to the UK by Connect India and SAMA, and will be performed in London,

Birmingham and Leicester. During their UK stay, the children will also be volunteering and making connections with charitable organizations. All are invited to attend the thought-provoking show to know the journey of these children as they salute Gandhi’s message of everlasting love and unity. The shows aim to raise awareness and build connections between Britain and India through programmes that involve engaging with India’s diverse population. Connect India’s Ani Devlia says: “We hope that those who see the children are enriched by their story and message of hope that they bring. We believe that not only will the lives of these children be transformed but they will act as role models and an inspiration to all those around them.” Ekatva’s UK tour has been organized with the support of SAMA, Hunton and Williams,

Sampad, Milafest, Community Links, Nada Brahma and National Hindu Students Forum. The venues and the timings of the programmes are: Leicester - Peepul Centre, Orchardson Avenue, Leicester LE4 6DP, 7.30 pm on Thursday 21st June, Birmingham - 7.30 pm on Friday 22 June, The Drum, 144 Potters Lane, Birmingham B6 4UU, London Rickmansworth – 5 pm on Sunday 24 June Watersmeet Theatre, High Street, Rickmansworth, Herts, WD3 1EH London – 5 pm on Sunday 1 July Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, 4A Castletown Road London W14 9HE For further information, including interviews with Ekatva participants contact: Kulbir Natt on 07737 847678 or


Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012


‘Gujarat and The Sea’ book launched in association 5-year-olds made to perform oral sex, naked yoga with Gujarat Samachar and Asian Voice Britishers showed enthusiasm in knowing about the history of Gujarat and its Sea Kokila Patel Sea has been a major influence on people of Gujarat and with time the bonding has grown stronger. It is only through the sea that millions have migrated, it’s not only the impact of sea on migration but the aura and influence of the sea stays with the people for ever. Even famous novelist Gulabdas Broker has written on sea of Gujarat. The book “Gujarat and The Sea” edited by Dr. Lotika Varadharajan and brought out by Darshak Itihas Nidhi. Since years, Gujarat has linked its business with China, Roman Empire and Central Asia through sea. Gujarat has diverse culture and religions beliefs because of sea. Such interesting talk was held on last Wednesday (13 June) evening at Nehru Centre’s auditorium where scholar Prof. Lord Bhikhu Parekh had said, “Today, when an informative book on ‘Gujarat and The Sea’ was launched, many will not be aware of the pride and grandeur of history of Gujarat. Although the sea has meant much to Gujarat, its place in Gujarat’s imagination and its influence on Gujarat’s culture has not been fully explored. Even the history of Gujarat in the medieval period and Gujarat’s ancient ties with China, Roman Empire and West and South East Asia has remained unexplored. We know there are references of Gujarat in classical Chinese literature of nearly 2,000 years ago. Gujarat popularised Chinese Porcelain in the world. Its cultural contacts with Rome also go back a long way.” All this raises some important questions. How did people of Gujarat travel overseas? What navigational devices did they use? Where was the necessary scientific research done? How did Gujarati language develop? Since its development coincided with Muslim rule in Gujarat, how was it shaped by that rule? Not only its vocabulary but also its grammar and mannerisms must be influenced by Persian and Arabic. Professor Parekh said that Gujarat was not a homogeneous entity. It has at least four different cultural units, including Saurashtra, North Gujarat, Central Gujarat and South Gujarat. These are now being brought together and for the first time a composite Gujarati identity is being constructed. This fascinating cultural process deserves closer examination. Vadodarabased Darshak Itihas Nidhi had made efforts to organize an international conference in 2010 at Kutch-Mandvi. At

From left to right: Editor CB Patel, Dr Edward Simpsons of SOAS, Hashmukhbhai Shah, Chairman of Darshak Itihaas Nidhi, Prof. Lord Bhikhu Parekh, John Carswel of SOAS, Gaurishankar of Nehru centre at the Book Launch. Photo courtesy: Sharad Raval

that time, John Karswele of SOAS came from London to participate. He said, “When I received the invitation for the conference in Mandvi, I was wondering about where and what will be Gujarat? I and my archeologist friend Frost left for Gujarat. We started from Khambhat. There is lot of Gujarat treasure and history hidden in its sea. Before centuries, lots of business was done from Surat and Bharuch in foreign markets. Even Haj yatris use to go to Mecca from the sea route. It was only through the Gujarat sea-route trade of Asian textiles, silk, precious gems, biscuits and rose were done. Dr Edward Simpsons of SOAS said, “Even I went to take part in the conference in Mandvi. Since centuries, sea-farers have used the Gujarat searoute to explore foreign shores. In the same way, Gujarat has also welcomed many foreign seafarers. Since years, Kutch has been exporting ayurvedic plants from Kutch. Punvarshu is a product of Mandvi. He also mentioned Nanirayan near Mandvi. The culture that flourished before 2,000 years, its grandeur can be known from its remains. Gujarat’s ancient history is centuries old. Darshak Itihas Nidhi (Foundation for studies in history) chairman Hashmukhbhai Shah said, “I am talking after three learned Professors. I wanted to say that we were not able to make proper arrangements for accommodation and stay for those attending the conference at Mandvi. It was because that Mandvi is old port of Kutch. It is a historical place and making five-star arrangements at that time was not possible. After the conference, with the help of 34 supporters, we had taken out a fantastic volume of 650 pages. We did not let any publisher know about it. With articles of 34 writers, this book ‘Gujarat and The Sea’ has been prepared. Prof Kumar Mere talked about the history of Gujarat. He said, “I have spend many years in

Vadodara. I am a Geologist, not an archeologist. Before 10 years ago when I came to Britain, I had heard people talking about CB, that CB is surely a person to meet and interact. He told me that 8,000 years ago, trade was carried out in Gujarat and Asia through ship. It was from Himalaya’s Kailash towards India’s west shores where Rugved’s very old Saraswati river flows. After the expert’s talks, there was a questionnaire round when Croiden- based Nitin Mehta wanted to know about the history of our forefathers who had gone to Africa from the Saurashtra-Kutch shores through the ship in 1920. Hasmukhbhai said, ‘We have already published ‘Gujarat in East Africa’ and one can refer that. Another person in the audience also said that his forefather used to export perfume from Gujarat. Sharad Raval said that the students are more enthusiastic to know about the Aryans and British Sultan. One British lady said, “I respect Mahatma Gandhi a lot, he is my inspiration. I have lot of high regard for India and Gandhiji. I am very much interested in knowing about Gandhiji and History of Gujarat.” And it is a matter of pride that many Britishers had come to attend the launch and were eagerly listening to the talks on Gujarat. Hasmukhbhai said, “In 1880 Haji Kasam was an agent of British company, he had a boat named ‘Vijli’ which drowned in sea off Veraval, taking 1,300 lives along with it. Haji Kasam was Meman. Meman community had published a book having vast information which sold out like hotcakes in the market. In fact, as the stock was finished in the market, more copies had to be printed. We have also published a book about Kathiawad history of 1806 to 1948. Only after independence in 1948, Kathiawad had become Saurashtra. Now we will publish a book presenting the history of trade carried through sea-route

of Surat. And how seatrade flourished and made it big. Today it is launch of ‘Gujarat and Sea’, and the co-sponsor of this book is CB Patel’. Editor CB Patel said, “I must have missed this opportunity if Prof Lord Bhikhu Parekh did not tell me about this book and Darshak Itihaas Nidhi. I wanted to be the connecting link between consumer and academic. Tushar Joshi is coming here on 9th July. We are planning to present a history of Gujaratis over here and their forefathers who had gone to Africa through sea-route, their struggle, adventure and success is worth mentioning. And we want to present this through a film in order to interest the new generation. A Parsi in the audience wanted to know about their forefather’s history. Lord Bhikhu Parekh said, “Parsis came to Gujarat in fourth century and they settled in Sanjan, Navsari, Bilimora and Valsad. First of all they settled in Sanjan. Today’s youth is doing lot of research on history of Gujarat. “Black Rulers in India’ book is being prepared by one African. We used to call them ‘Habsi’, information about such seven rulers will be known in ‘Black Influence in Gujarat’.

at Rohtak shelter home

Children, many between five and 10 years, were forced into oral sex and performing yoga in the nude at the Rohtak shelter home. An inmate was found to be HIV positive. Such revelations are part of a report submitted by two members - advocate Anil Malhotra and Sudeepti Sharma - of a probe panel set up by the Punjab and Haryana high court after the raid at Apna Ghar, run by an NGO. Jaswanti Devi, who ran the home, was arrested. About 101 inmates of the home were sent to various homes in Haryana after the arrest of Jaswanti and her accomplices. The report by media said most of the girls were made to garland men, saying they were "married," and forced to consent to physical relationship. The panel found a woman shifted from Apna Ghar to another shelter home in an adjoining district tested HIV positive. "Some children between five and 10 years complained of sexual abuse, including oral sex, by Jaswanti's son-in-law Jai Bhagwan and driver Satish," said the report. Satish filmed inmates as they performed yoga "naked", it said. Jaswanti sold a speechand hearing-impaired girl thrice and another girl was reportedly found pregnant.

During their interaction, the probe panel members found inmates with "blank/frozen expression, presumably due to addiction to the white powder, which was administered in a soft drink in the shelter home before forcing them for sexual encounters with outsiders". According to the report, inmates were terrified and opened up after much persuasion. Most girls said Satish would drive them to hotels where policemen abused them sexually. This was repulsive, painful and agonizing, the report quoted the inmates as saying. "Newborn boys were sold to people in the garb of adoption by Jaswanti. If it were a girl, she would be reared to 'serve' males visiting the home. All inmates were made to consume intoxicants on festivals like Holi and Satish and Jai Bhagwan would put colour on their private parts," the report said. The panel asked the court to transfer the case from the Haryana Police and hand it over to an independent agency like the CBI for a thorough probe, prosecution and trial of the accused. The panel suggested brain mapping and lie detector tests for all the seven accused and examination of all electronic equipment like laptops to check allegations of child pornography.



Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

A coalition must have a secular leader: Nitish Kumar

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar has asked his alliance partner, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), to name a prime ministerial candidate with secular credentials before the 2014 elections, a move seemingly aimed at queering the pitch for Narendra Modi, the controversial chief minister of Gujarat. "The leader of the coalition should have secular credentials and liberal frame of mind," said Kumar, who has been careful in maintaining a distance from Modi because of the latter's anti-Muslim image following the 2002 riots that occurred under his watch in Gujarat. "It should be someone who has absolute

faith in democratic values," he said. "In a multi-religious and multi-lingual country like ours, the leader should not have rough edges in his personality." In an interview, Kumar made it clear that Modi would not be acceptable to his party. The Bihar chief

Gujarat’s Jurassic Park up for sale Royal families, dinosaurs and desolate islands thrive only in fairytales. But not for Siddhrajsinh Raol whose ancestors once ruled the Bhavnagar region. He is the owner of one of the last privately owned virgin islands – Piram – about 7.2 nautical miles from Ghogha. Strewn with fossils of dinosaur eggs, giraffe and gigantic turtles, Raol has put the island up for sale. “I have at least 100 offers, but most of them have plans that may destroy the natural history of this place,” says Raol, a businessman who company makes greenhouses. “We are targeting high net-worth individuals (HNI), NRIs and celebrities who could develop Piram into a residential township. We plan to source power from nonconventional sources – solar and wind.” The island shares features similar to private islands like the Isla de sa Ferradura in Spain, Temptation Island in Thailand and the Blue Lagoon in Fiji. Besides, HNIs, large corporates have shown interest. Raol, how-

ever, is not ready to declare the price tag. Such is the island’s location that history has been washed on its shores over the ages. This includes parts of shipwrecks some which belong to the 14 the century – the ships’ crankshafts and other parts still lie strewn on the beach. Every point on this 90acre island is riddled with fossils, some dating back 8,000 years. Fossils of two basic species of giraffes – Brahmatherium and Sivatherium – were found from the island in the 1860s. Those of the Hipparion have also been found here. The lone lighthouse at the edge of the island only adds to its beauty. “Though the island is spread over 186 acres, the Directorate General of Lighthouse and Lightships owns the light house and its surroundings while the rest is mandatory government wasteland. I am the only private owner on the island. We have even offered the government that we could help them develop the wasteland,” says Raol.

minister did not refer to Modi by name, but left little doubt that his party, the Janata Dal (United), would walk out of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) if the Gujarat CM were to be projected as its prime ministerial candidate. "I have cordial relations with Bihar BJP. If external forces are bent on spoiling this relationship, I cannot help it," Kumar said. NDA should declare a prime ministerial candidate before the 2014 polls so as to cash in on the popular disaffection with Congress, Kumar said, while ruling himself out of the prime ministerial race. "I am not in the race for prime ministership. I

cannot even dream of that high office," he said. In the interview, Kumar made his opposition to Modi plain. "The NDA should have a leader who can feel for the underdeveloped states like Bihar," said Kumar, alluding to Modi's recent remarks that Bihar's "casteist" leadership was responsible for the slow growth of the state. Kumar's assertions come at a time BJP is struggling to evolve a consensus on its leader. While RSS and a section of BJP want senior leader LK Advani to announce his retirement, the second-rung leaders have not been able to settle on an acceptable candidate.

Gandhi’s letters to Kallenbach on sale In one of the most significant auctions of Gandhi memorabilia, Sotheby’s London is going to put thousands of letters, papers and photographs which shed light on the life of the Mahatma, under the hammer on July 10. The archive comprises five decades of correspondence, much of it previously unpublished, between Gandhi and Hermann Kallenbach, a German Jewish bodybuilder and architect who became Gandhi’s closest friend after they met in Johannesburg in 1904. It was Kallenbach’s plot of land that Gandhi turned into his ashram of satyagrahis, and at his suggestion, named it after Tolstoy. Their relationship has been a subject of much speculation ever since the release of Pulitzer prizewinning journalist and author Joseph Lelyveld’s biography, Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle With India. Though Lelyveld denied that he had said Gandhi was homosexual or bisexual, many interpreted his references to their closeness as an indication of a

She wanted former president A P J Abdul Kalam, Manmohan Singh or former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee to be selected as UPA candidate. But the

Congress rejected Mamata’s suggestion and selected Mukherjee. The party, however, won support from other coalition partners for its choice and appeared confident that Mukherjee would win the electoral college vote

on July 19. With Mukherjee likely to get the support from even the Left parties, India might soon have Mukherjee as its President. However, with Pranab having to quit as finance minister, speculation is rife that Manmohan Singh

more intimate relationship. The archive is estimated to realize £500,000-700,000 (Rs 4-6 crore). Historian Ramchandra Guha had discovered the letters at the home of Isa Sarid, the grandniece of Kallenbach, and brought them to the notice of the government. Gabriel Heaton, Sotheby’s deputy director, said the letters hinted at a very intimate friendship, but there was nothing of a sexual nature. Kallenbach had preserved all of Gandhi’s letters, though Lelyveld says that Gandhi destroyed all of Kallenbach’s “charming love notes” to him because he believed Kallenbach wanted them to be seen “by no other eyes”. In the letters that go on sale, Kallenbach addresses his growing concerns about the spread of Nazism and the plight of fellow Jews in India.

is likely to retain the finance portfolio with him once Pranab Mukherjee becomes President. UPA, earlier secured the support of Mulayam Singh Yadav and Mayawati for Mukherjee’s candidature.

Saina overcomes Li Xuerui to lift third Indonesian Open title Continued from page 1 With the one hour, five minute battle of attrition, Saina ended the 30-match winning streak of Xuerui, who undoubtedly is the most successful player on the circuit this year. Xuerui had last lost to Wang Yihan in the quarterfinals of the Malaysia Open on January 13, before winning the German Open, All England, Asian Championships and the India Open. "I am quite excited with

this victory. Somehow whenever I step on the court in Indonesia I feel like a champion. This venue is lucky for me and without doubt it is my favourite. I love Indonesia, the people and many thanks to my fans who have come all the way to cheer me," Saina said. "There is still sometime before the Olympics. We need to work very hard as everyone will be at their peak during the Games. The Chinese are tough to beat and we have to be ready for them," a mod-

est Saina said. Coming back to the game on Sunday, Xuerui had almost wrapped up the match as she was leading 20-18 in the second game after taking the first one at 21-13. But Saina, who was in a similar situation in the Commonwealth Games final, kept her nerves and forced the Chinese into making two unforced errors before snatching two points to stay alive in the match. Coach Pullela Gopichand said that he was surprised by

Kutchis celebrate the New Year on Ashadi Beej that is 2nd day of Shukla paksha of Aashaadha month of Hindu calendar. As for people of Kutch, this day is associated with beginning of rains in Kutch, which is largely a desert area. Hindu calendar month of Aashaadh usually begins on 22 June and ending on 22 July.

In Focus Mayawati spent `86.56 crore on her bungalow: UP govt

The Uttar Pradesh government said former chief minister Mayawati spent a whopping `86.56 crore to maintain her Mall Avenue bungalow during her tenure. "An amount of `86.56 crore was spent on maintenance and `20.09 lakh on electrical work in Mayawati's bungalow," state minister Abhishek Mishra said in reply to a question raised by SP member Ravidas Malhotra in the Assembly. The government, however, will not initiate any probe as no complaint has been received in this regard, Mishra said, adding that financial irregularities were not detected in the works as no audit of the same was done.

BCCI chief N Srinivasan appears before CBI in Jagan case

NDA undecided on its presidential candidate Continued from page 1

Greetings on Kutchi New year

the mental toughness of his ward. "To be frank I was not expecting her to play like that today. The last week has been like a dream. After a tough week at Thailand I thought it would be difficult to maintain the tempo. But I am surprised by her mental tenacity. The way she came back from the brink and kept her nerve was just amazing. To be honest I didn't think she would display that grit today," said Gopi, adding that the Chinese will now be working on new strategies to counter Saina.

BCCI chief and India Cements managing director N Srinivasan appeared before CBI in connection with the disproportionate assets cases against YSR Congress chief Jaganmohan Reddy. After being asked by the central probe agency, Srinivasan appeared before CBI at the Dilkusha Guest House here. The agency sleuths are currently questioning him. CBI is probing the alleged investments made by Srinivasan's company India Cements in the firms promoted by the Kadapa MP during the tenure of his father Y S Rajasekhara Reddy as Andhra Pradesh chief minister. The CBI, in its three charge-sheets filed against Jagan and others, has alleged that he and his father hatched a conspiracy to defraud the government, and the state government granted some favours to certain firms, which made investments in Jagan's businesses as a quid pro quo. Jagan is currently in judicial custody till June 25 and has been questioned by the CBI.

Gujarati diplomat is India’s envoy to Mexico

Sujan R Chinoy, the senior most serving Gujarati diplomat, has been appointed as the next ambassador of India to Mexico. Chinoy will be the first Gujarati to hold such a post . He is currently additional secretary in the ministry of external affairs. A 1981batch IFS officer, Chinoy hails from a wellknown family of Rajkot. His grandfather, barrister C N Chinoy, was the diwan of the Rajkot state in pre-Independence days. Chinoy wields expertise on China and East Asia. As the consul-general of India in Shanghai between 2000 and 2005, and thereafter as the consulgeneral of India in Sydney until 2008, Chinoy has worked extensively on India’s external trade and economic engagements.

Honour killing: Man beheads daughter in Rajasthan

In a brutal honour killing, a man beheaded his 20-year-old daughter with a sword in Rajasthan's Rajsamand district. The incident took place in Charbhuja area of the district, some 400 km from Jaipur. The man, Omkar Singh, was spotted roaming in the village with a severed head. The villagers brought him to the nearby police outpost with the head and a blood-stained sword. Omkar Singh was allegedly outraged over his daughter's alleged relations with several men. Omkar Singh told the police that his daughter Manju had relations with several men. He had asked her to mend her ways several times in the past. However, she did not pay heed. Out of pure rage, he chopped off her head with the sword," said the officer.


Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012


Innovative knee replacement surgery performed in Ahmedabad Purvi Apurva Shah A rare and complicated knee replacement surgery was performed on a 67-year-old woman by American surgeon Dr Ali Oliashirazi and Ahmedabad’s leading orthopaedic surgeon Dr Satish Patel. The surgery was performed successfully with a new innovative technology, computer navigation system, 2.1 versions at Dr Patel’s Sarthak Orthopedic hospital along with American Dr Ali Oliashirazi, a pioneer in joint replacement surgery from Cabell Huntington Hospital, US. Dr Oliashirazi is a specialty in adult reconstructive surgery. The woman (name not given) was suffering with osteoarthritis for the last 10 years. She had bilateral varus deformity. Being a house wife she used to do all the daily activities by herself. As the age progressed she suffered with osteoarthritis and that affected her knee so badly that she was not able to do her daily activities. He condition became so worse that she had to depend on someone for her basic necessities. Arthritis today is not age-bound and more and more young patients are affected by it. Even the number of people getting affected by it is increasing. So this led to more technological innovations which enabled surgeons to do surgeries at a faster pace and more efficiently. One of these innovations is the introduction of computer navigation system, 2.1 versions. The unique feature of this system is that it gives better and more accurate outcomes of the surgery, thus improving the wear pattern and hence providing the longer life of the implants. The technology can be compared with the navigation system used in aircraft where even a slight degree of change in direction may lead to complications. Manually this may not be as precise and safe. It’s like 3G in TKR field, which cuts down the surgery time hence reducing the cost to

India’s surrogacy hub aims for Guinness world record

American Surgeon Dr. Ali Oliashirazi (left) and Ahmedabad’s leading orthopaedic surgeon Dr. Satish Patel who performed the surgery.

patient, better alignment and unlike traditional form of surgery there are no

chances of fat embolism, high blood loss and the fear of infection. Because of its technicalities and price, very few surgeons in Ahmedabad have access to this technology. One of the very few surgeons who leverage the advantage of this technology is Dr Satish Patel. On this technology Dr Satish Patel said, “If I had to describe this technology in one word, I would say that it’s a “boon” to patients. It’s not only helpful for the doctors but equally beneficial to the patients. Because it’s fast and involves less wear and tear, patients can be discharged soon and the time taken to recuperate also reduces extensively. The introduction of this technology is just the first step. It’s very important to spread awareness about


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

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

Awarded for excellence in sports.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

In recognition for an individuals service to community.

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

Award for Entertainment .................................................... For outstanding performance by Asians in the field of Dance and Music. Akanksha IVF Centre in Anand, Gujarat, is bidding for a Guinness record after having just delivered the 500th baby through surrogacy. Having single handedly turned this milk capital into the surrogacy capital since starting off in 2004, pioneer Dr Naina Patel says “Our clinic has by far the maximum number of successful cases anywhere in the world.” In eight years, the clinic’s fame has spread across the world and it has found surrogate mothers for childless couples from 29 countries, including USA, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa, Romania, Denmark, Israel, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, besides south Asian countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. More than half of Dr Patel’s clients are from abroad - both foreigners and expats. “We get a variety of clients, including single women and men,” says Dr Patel who has helped many local women use their wombs as a source of livelihood. “We have some women who have rented out their womb two or three times for good money,” she says. A large part of business comes from the US. Couples coming from there have to spend up to $25,000 on the entire package to have a baby.

it and to make it more accessible and affordable.” As per medical experts, osteoarthritis affects around 21 million out of nearly 43 million people with arthritis. One in every six people is expected to reach epidemic proportions by 2020.“Any injury to the cartilage or injury through minuscule tear will ultimately lead to arthritis of joints. Once the cartilage is injured, the damage is permanent,” said Dr Ali Oliashirazi. With people now being affected by arthritis as early as 30 years, especially in cities, it has now become a serious cause of concern. In the West, there is a growing awareness of bone disease. Australia, for instance, has put osteoporosis on its list of national priority disease.

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

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

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

Application Form

Name of the Nominee: ___________________________________________________________________________________ Contact Details of the Nominee (Tel & email): _______________________________________________________________ Present Occupation of the Nominee: _______________________________________________________________________ Please attach the Nominees's CV which includes the following information (Please do not exceed a limit of 1000 words) (1) Personal background (2) (3) (4) (5)

Most important career achievements till date. Nominee's contribution to the community and nation. Any notable obstacles in the Nominee's career that has helped him/her to reach where they are today. Future Plans, ambitions and visions.

Summary- (Please include a summary in not more than 150 words why the nominee is worthy of winning the particular award in a separate sheet) Nominators name and contact details: _____________________________________________________________________ Nominators current Occupation/Company: __________________________________________________________________ Tel/Mobile: _________________________________

Email: __________________________________________________

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



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Travel & women

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

women achievers Jayshreeben - A woman with the vision of banking for the poor By AV Correspondent

Tantalising Turkey urkey is an exciting combination of western and eastern cultures. T With food to suit all tastes, sunshine

for most of the year and sights, shopping and relaxing resorts, everyone can enjoy a holiday in Turkey. Its shores are laced with beaches, bays, coves, ports, islands and peninsulas. The summers are long, lasting almost eight months in some areas. Turkey is blessed with breathtaking mountains and valleys, lakes and waterfalls and offers a variety of sports. If you want to visit the capital and go for some sightseeing and culture, Istanbul has a rich tradition in opera and ballet, theatres, concerts, art exhibitions, festivals, and unique museums. It is a vibrant, modern metropolis with bazaars and street vendors alongside shopping centres, old crumbling buildings and skyscrapers. For a more relaxing escape to the Turkish Riviera, you must stay in Antalya which is without a doubt, the most stunning part of Turkey's Mediterranean coast. It is a thriving modern city within old city walls. No cars are allowed in the narrow streets of the old town so it is a fantastic place to soak up the atmosphere. You can stroll though the charming harbour area whilst shopping for local handicrafts and gifts. The beach area of Lara is home to the best beach in the area, known for its golden sand and set against a beautiful mountain backdrop. Many of its grandest hotels overlook the sea on the outskirts of the town. A visually stunning five star resort to stay at in Lara is the Titanic Deluxe Beach Resort which is built in the shape of a ship. With heated indoor and outdoor pools, play areas for children with water slides and shallow pools, this resort is perfect for families. Another great option in Antalya is the Concorde Deluxe Hotel which has landscaped gardens replete with hammocks for relaxing, many restaurants offering international cuisines and evening entertainment. Both hotels offer spas and with all inclusive offers available, they offer the perfect getaway if you are just looking to relax and unwind in one spot. As the hotels are only 10km from the airport, you will be sunning yourself at the poolside before you know it! To book your dream holiday to Turkey, call Brightsun Travel who offer a helpful and friendly service and will answer all questions such as providing information on hotel facilities, and catering for your needs within your budget. Brightsun Travel offers a price match promise on worldwide flights and holidays so you will get the best deals. Brightsun have special offers on Turkey packages including flights, 7 nights stay at the 5* Titanic Deluxe Beach resort on an all inclusive basis, and transfers from only £769 pp. To take advantage of this amazing offer call Brightsun Travel on 0208 819 0486 or visit

Jayshreeben Vyas has enabled many to visualise a dream and make a savings for themselves and secure their future. She is the Managing Director of Shree Mahila Sewa Sahakari (SEWA) Bank that was founded in 1974 by 4,000 self employed women members, with an initial contribution of Rs 10 per member. During her work at SEWA Bank spanning two decades, Jayshreeben has implemented various innovative programmes aimed at providing self employed women with access to credit, secure savings, insurance and housing. She is also on board of Indian School of

Microfinance for Women where she actively contributes to capacity building and financial literacy. Prior to her position with SEWA Bank, she was a financial analyst at the Central Bank of India. Jayshreeben has been a member of the WWB Board of Trustees since 1998 and is the chairperson of SA-DHAN. “Our clients, selfemployed women with low income, demanded a safe place to save and showed a great ability to save small amounts regularly, as long as they were facilitated through appropriate collection systems,’’ said Vyas. As long as we design attractive savings schemes tailored to their needs and provide them

with easy collection mechanisms, we see that poor women are great savers. From an institutional point of view, building up a credit loan fund from members' own savings was viewed to be the most cost effective with the least strings attached. In addition, bulk loans from mainstream financial institutions were nearly impossible to access in the 70s and 80s, so SEWA Bank had to rely on a steady source of funds for lending, from its own depositors. In response to demand from members for a variety of savings needs, SEWA Bank has developed a wide range of different savings products or schemes.

Talala farmers to stop cultivation of Kesar mangoes AV Correspondent Talala taluka of Junagadh district is a name synonymous with Kesar mangoes. But this year the mango growers are a dejected lot and are planning to completely stop the cultivation of the fruit. Some have even hired earthmovers to clear their mango orchards. The mango production has been on a decline, especially in the last five years, and this year it is not just a decline in the production there has also been a dip in the prices. And it is this one reason that led the farmers to conclude that it is no longer a profit making venture. H Jasania, secretary of Talala mango yard said, “This season has been the worst in the last five years, with the entire production in the taluka being merely 15-20% of the normal level.’’ He added it was the dip in the prices which saddened the farmers completely and that has been a reason why the farmers who have been cultivating mango from the last 15-20 years have lost hope. Jasania added that the prices have been so discouraging for the farmers this year that some of them have even hired the JCB machines to clear mangoes trees from their fields. The mangoes from this place are purchased by traders from Maharashtra and Rajasthan and are in great demand among the non resident Gujaratis. Speaking about the crisis, farmer Dayabhai Sojitra said, “Small farmers who used to earn Rs 3-4 lakh every season are now earning just Rs 40,000 which led to a livelihood crisis.’’ He cited the dis-

pute between the traders and the farmers for the fall in the price. “The traders wanted 10% commission from the farmers which they refused to pay,’’ said Jasania. He added that the

farmers had approached the state government but it did not help. So as a last resort the farmers had to trade in the private market where the prices were much lower than that of a yard. He said that the farmers had to give up their profit and sell a mango box containing 10 kg between Rs 100 and Rs 400. In the market yard they would be able to earn three times more than what they earn at present.

Makki Paneer Pakora

Ingredients: 1/2 tsp cumin powder, 2 tsp coriander leaves chopped, oil for deep frying , 6 tsp bengal gram flour besan, salt to taste , 2 tsp ginger chopped, 2 tsp garlic chopped, 2 green chilli chopped, 1 cup milk, 1 3/4 tsp dry mango powder amchur, 1 onion chopped, 100 gms cottage cheese (paneer), 200 gm corn fresh (makki). Method: Crush the corn in a blender. Grate the cottage cheese. Heat up oil in a pan, mix in cut ginger and garlic and stir fry till pink. Mix in crushed corn and stir fry. Mix in salt and milk and stir fry to get a creamy texture. When the corn is cooked, transfer it to a round dish and cool. Mix in grated paneer, cut onion, cut green chillies, cumin powder, amchur powder and cut coriander leaves. Adjust salt and mix well. Mix in besan for binding and mix in a little milk if the mixture is

too thick. Make even sized balls with hand or tablespoon. Heat up oil and deep fry the pakoras on medium heat till it turns golden brown. Remove and keep on an absorbent paper to soak excess oil. Serve hot. Health Benefits: Paneer is one of the most varied and fascinating of dairy products. Paneer is a good source of calcium, which helps build strong bones and teeth, and also prevents osteoporosis. Paneer in moderation, is associated with lower body weight as well as reduced risk of developing insulin resistance syndrome. Paneer is a good source of protein and it reduces cancer risk.

HealtH WaTcH

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Viagra can help patients with heart defects Use of sildenafil, also known as the erectile dysfunction drug Viagra, may boost function of underdeveloped hearts in children and young adults with congenital heart defects, suggest a new study. Researchers from The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia has reported that sildenafil significantly improved echocardiographic measures of heart function in children and young adult survivors of single ventricle heart disease palliation. "Although researchers will need to evaluate clinical benefits over a longer period with a larger number of patients, this finding offers a potential advance in the management of patients with these types of heart defects," said study leader David J. Goldberg, M.D., a pediatric cardiologist at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. The researchers randomly assigned 27 children and young adults at Children's Hospital to receive either sildenafil or a placebo for six weeks. After a six-week break in treatment, the subjects were switched to the opposite treatment course. The study team used echocardiograms to measure myocardial performance index (MPI), an indicator of the heart's overall ability to pump blood. The patients in this double-blind, short-term study, who had a mean age of 14.9 years, had undergone a Fontan operation in early childhood, a mean of 11.3 years previously. The Fontan surgery redirects blood circulation in patients born with a severely underdeveloped ventricle, one of the heart's two pumping chambers. The operation is the third in a staged series of surgeries for life-threatening single-ventricle defects. Although surgical

advances over the past 20 years have dramatically improved survival for single-ventricle defects, patients with the condition continue to have long-term illness and risk of early death. The staged surgeries do not recreate normal heart circulation, but instead redirect blood flowing from the veins directly to the lungs, bypassing the heart. However, blood vessels in the lungs develop resistance to this blood, often reducing a patient's ability to tolerate exercise. Sildenafil, which reduces blood vessel resistance to the flow of blood, is already used to treat pulmonary hypertension (high blood press in lung vessels), as well as erectile dysfunction. Because sildenafil has also shown promise as a treatment for adults with heart failure, the Children's Hospital researchers are exploring whether it may benefit younger patients with certain types of congenital heart disease. The current study is part of a broader phase 2 clinical trial at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, the Sildenafil after the Fontan Operation (SAFO) trial. The current study was the first to show that sildenafil improved echo cardiographic measures of ventricular performance in children and young adults with single-ventricle physiology. The biological mechanisms that affect ventricular performance are not fully understood, said Goldberg, but he noted that studies in other patients with heart disease suggest that inhibiting the abnormally high levels of the enzyme phosphodiesterase E5 (PDE5) may produce the physiological benefits seen in the single-ventricle patients.

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8 glasses of water a day myth busted

The common belief that people should drink eight glasses or two litres of water a day is a 'myth' that needs debunking, a Melbourne academic says. The new Australian recommendations suggest that an adequate daily fluid intake is about 2.8 litres for women and 3.4 litres for men. However, this includes fluid found in food and beverages. La Trobe University lecturer Spero Tsindos said that people could get their daily fluid intake from fruit, vegetables, juices and even tea and coffee.

"If you're feeling thirsty then drink by all means a beverage. It doesn't have to be water", Tsindos was quoted as writing in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health. "I'm not saying you shouldn't drink water. I'm saying the need to drink two litres of water on a regular

basis is a complete myth." "We should be telling people that beverages like tea and coffee contribute to a person's fluid needs and despite their caffeine content, do not lead to dehydration", Tsindos said. He said that drinking a large quantity of water in one sitting to reach the daily intake level was pointless because it would not be distributed where it was needed. It would just dilute the urine. Drinking large amounts of water to lose weight would not work either without a low-calorie diet,

Brush teeth properly to cut cancer risk

Failing to brush teeth properly can increase the risk of cancer as higher levels of dental plaque is linked to chronic health problems, researchers have claimed. Researchers said that infection and inflammation play a role in up to one in five cancers, and is a key element in gum disease caused by dental plaque. Those with the most bacteria on the surface of their teeth and gums had an 80% increased risk of premature death. However, the Swedish researchers behind the study have admitted their findings do not prove a causal link between cancer and dental plaque. Poor mouth hygiene may be an

indicator of other lifestyle factors associated with cancer. Gum disease causes bad breath, bleeding gums and, if untreated, cavities, receding gums and tooth loss after plaque settles between teeth and under the gumline, a report said. It has been linked to chronic health problems including heart disease, thought to be caused by inflammation passing from the gums into the blood-

stream, although US researchers have recently suggested the link may be coincidental. The study tracked the health of 1,390 randomly selected adults from Stockholm for 24 years, starting 1985. All participants were in their 30s and 40s at the start of the monitoring, when they were questioned about factors likely to increase cancer risk, such as smoking and wealth. None had overt gum disease, but all had varying levels of plaque on the tooth and gum surface. By 2009, 58 had died, around a third of whom were women (35%). Of these deaths, 35 were caused by cancer.

To fight flab, sleep for more than 9 hours Struggling to shed the flab? Fret not. Just sleep over it, literally, say researchers. A new study, led by the University of Washington, has found that sleeping for more than nine hours daily may help a person shed weight - this is because it counteracts a genetic predisposition to obesity. In the study of twins, the researchers have found that sleeping for less than seven hours a night was linked to higher bodyweights and a greater susceptibility to genetic factors that influence weight. However, the opposite was

true in people who slept for nine hours or more. Several genes have been found to be associated with obesity and this is thought to be the first study to examine how sleep interacts with them. Researchers analysed 1,088 pairs of twins and found that the genetic influence on their body mass index was twice as great in those who slept for

less than seven hours as compared to those who slept for nine hours a night. Lead author Nathaniel Watson said, "The results suggest that shorter sleep provides a more permissive environment for the expression of obesity related genes. Or it may be that extended sleep is protective by suppressing expression of obesity genes." Dr Watson said the results may suggest that weight loss measure would be most effective when genetic influences on obesity were mitigated through sleep extension.

he emphasised. "There is further evidence that water and a well-balanced diet do far more than water alone," Tsindos wrote. "Water is important for health, however, the recommendation of eight glasses of pure water a day appears an overestimation of requirements," he said. The "eight glasses a day" notion may have stemmed from guidelines published in the US in 1945, Tsindos wrote. The National Academy of Sciences had recommended that about 2.5 litres of water should be consumed daily.

Health benefits of black tea It is said that coffee is harmful to health, unlike tea. But it's important to know why tea is beneficial to health. Black tea, for that matter, has many health benefits. Black tea (just like green tea) is plucked from a plant called camellia sinensis. The leaves of black tea, are steeped such that it can give a dark colour when used as a beverage. Also, the leaves are mature dry and processed in such a way that it has a dark colour. Black tea has extremely low caffeine content, which is great for circulation. Fluoride is another content of black tea and thus allows oral and bone health. Black tea, contains flavonoids which are also found in apples. Unlike green tea, black tea, once processed eliminates all antioxidants existing in it. Black tea not only helps to fight bacteria but also strengthens the immune system. As one knows, drinking tea hydrates the body, thus a cup of black tea helps moisturise the skin. Black tea also balances the hormone levels, which fends off stress. Not only does black tea have anti-inflammatory qualities, it also keeps a check on the digestive tracts functioning. It can help reduce stroke risks as it balances the cholesterol level.



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Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

CB Live is the only Gujarati live programme in UK on Television On 9 and 10 June, the Anand Mela took place at Harrow Leisure Centre. This Thursday, highlights from the mela will be broadcast on CB live. Mrudula Desai, a well known singer will sing some Gujarati songs along with Niraj Pathak. If you do not have a SKY, go to and watch CB Live on TVU Player Channel 75203

Sneh Joshi - 020 8518 5500 Although all kinds of opportunities are coming your way, there are many obstacles between you and the fulfilment of any of these. As you clear your path you will get closer to achieving your dreams. Relationships and romance are both under scrutiny by the presence of Saturn in your 7th house.

ARIES Mar 21 - Apr 20

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Is life always a gift?

On a business trip to Athens seven years ago, Tony Nicklinson suffered a catastrophic stroke which left him paralysed from the neck down and unable to speak. Since then, Mr Nicklinson has been forced to live what he describes a “dull, miserable, demeaning, undignified and intolerable” life. His wish is for a doctor to be able to lawfully end his life. On Tuesday 19 June, Mr Nicklinson took his right to die plea to the High Court. Speaking ahead of the court hearing (using a specially adapted computer which enables him to express his point of view), Mr Nicklinson stated: "It [the outcome] is important for me because it determines what sort of death that awaits me. "If I win it means that

I have a pain free death. If I lose I am faced with the choices of living until I die of natural causes or starving myself to death...neither option is particularly inviting. "I want the law to recognise that there are some circumstances where suicide is a legitimate choice for a person to make." The debate on assisted dying remains a controversial issue in the United Kingdom with some arguing that life is a gift. Mr Nicklinson added that “for most people the debate is often remote from ordinary lives but for me, the debate on assisted dying is truly a matter of (an unhappy) life and (a pain-free) death. The next stroke could affect you or a loved one; would you be happy to end up like me?”

Coming Events l GURU PURNIMA Tuesday 3rd July 2012 - Shree Jalarambapa's Paduka Pujan From 9am to 10.30am For more details contact Shree Jalaram Mandir Greenford on 0208 578 8088 / 9285 l ISKCON CROYDON presents Croydon Rathayatra Sunday 24th June. 12pm Guests will gather on High Street (North End, opposite the M&S store) l CII-CBI India Conference on India-UK Partnership in Reviving and Restoring Economic Growth Time: 0930-1330 hrs Date: Thursday 28th June 2012 Venue: Edwardian 1, Hotel St James Crowne Plaza Buckingham Gate, London SW1E 6AF For more information contact: Dr. Gunveena Chadha, Director & Head - UK, Confederation of Indian Industry Tel: +44 (0) 20 78364121 l Chinmaya Mission UK presents “Swaranjaneya” A musical offering to Lord Hanuman with Swami Tejomayananda. In London, Guruji will sing the Hanuman Chalisa in seven different ragas. The event is doubly blessed as it is on Guru Poornima, the day on which the Guru is reverenced. Time, date & venue: 7.30-9.00pm at Kensington Town Hall on Tuesday 3rd July 2012

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TAURUS Apr 21 - May 21 You will have plenty of energy and drive to improve your status and at the same time achieve financial prosperity - you must make good use of the energy that is flowing, by channelling it positively! Creativity, romance and leisure all receive a tonic. GEMINI May 22 - June 22

This is almost certain to be an eventful time for affairs of the heart. The transit of Venus through your sign augurs well for those hoping to meet the right partner. A party that you attend allows you to connect with interesting new people, one of whom may be interested in you as a romantic partner.

CANCER Jun 22 - Jul 22 Do not kid yourself that emotional problems can always be solved by material means. This only covers the cracks and does nobody any good in the end. Be prepared to confront the issues. If love has left you feeling rather dejected or cynical, it looks as though soon events will pull you out of this mood of despondency. LEO Jul 23 - Aug 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. Meditation, yoga and therapies will help you to get in closer touch with your inner self.

VIRGO Aug 24 - Sep 23 The fiery planet Mars, continues to occupy your sign. Its influence will help you to maintain a high energy level and achieve positive results in anything that requires drive and initiative. However, you will need to focus on what is most important in your life, otherwise mistakes will be made. LIBRA Sep 24 - Oct 23 An inspiring boost to matters of communication but make sure your curiosity on a range of topics does not lead to a scattering of mental energy. With a surge of energy and enthusiasm, this is a favourable time to make fresh starts. Personal relationships may be more intense. SCORPIO Oct 24- Nov 22 The prevailing cosmic pattern packs a powerful punch early this week. Having such potent energies, make you feel positive and confident in whatever you do. This is not the time to hold back or underestimate your potential if you wish to further an important aim. SAGITTARIUS Nov 23 - Dec 21 It is certainly going to be a fortunate time for those in established relationships. The keynote is emotional enrichment through close interaction with a loved one. Facets of your life that have been a source of restriction and dissatisfaction will begin to loosen their hold. You are endowed with a level of determination that others sometimes find formidable. Once you set your mind on a goal you stay the course no matter what obstacles you encounter. Saturn's placement in your Solar 10th house often denotes a phase of restriction, sometimes frustration, in one's life.

CAPRICORN Dec 22 - Jan 20

AQUARIUS Jan 21 - Feb 19

Disruptions in your home bring a new outlook with a search for security. There will be opportunities through partnerships. It is time to team up with others with the same desires and goals. It is time to take your plans to the next level with focus and planning. Don't be afraid to act forcefully if your instinct tells you it's time for change. If you know your ground and are not afraid to stick your neck out, you can create your own opportunities. Besides spending time on domestic affairs, the focus can be on cultivating and nourishing your inner foundations, so to speak.

PISCES Feb 20 - Mar 20

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012



Action at a Glance 71-year-old bowler dies after cricket ball hits his head

A 71-year-old bowler died after a horrified cricketer's shot hit his head. Players battled in vain to revive David Wilcockson after he collapsed on the pitch unconscious. The cricket-mad pensioner was airlifted to a hospital where he clung to life for 13 days. But he finally died in a coma leaving fellow players of his friendly side shattered last night. Retired insurance salesman David was a stalwart of Old Dorkinians Cricket Club, based in Dorking, Surrey. He joined in 1959 and was the longest serving member. Teammate Andy Leopold, 44, told how David had played 1,678 matches taking 2,899 wickets and 160 catches.

India 'A' face series defeat against West Indies 'A'

India 'A' stand on the verge of a probable series defeat after suffering yet another batting collapse in their second innings against West Indies 'A' on the third day of the third and final unofficial Test. After conceding a crucial 106-run first innings lead to West Indies 'A', India's top-order yet again disappointed as the visitors ended the third and penultimate day at 181/7 in their second essay, still trailing the home team by 75 runs. After India's first four wickets fell cheaply for just 35 runs, Manoj Tiwary showed some resilience with a gritty 62 off 119 balls to take the visitors forward in their second innings in wicket-keeper Wriddhiman Saha's company.

India to play 5 ODIs & 2 T20s in Sri Lanka

The Indian cricket team will be playing five One-day matches and two Twenty20 matches in Sri Lanka from the third week of July. According to sources, the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) was initially interested in playing a fullfledged series against India, including a short Test series. But due to hectic scheduling, the Indian cricket board (BCCI) couldn't accommodate Test series, but has given go ahead to the One-dayers and T20s. "These matches will be ideal for the Indian team, especially, at a time when the World T20 is around the corner in Sri Lanka itself," a top BCCI official confirmed. It would be interesting to see if Sachin Tendulkar would be interested to play these matches in Sri Lanka. After scoring his 100th tons in international cricket, there is no confirmation on his availability for the series. Last time, India played One-dayers in the Asia Cup, Tendulkar was available for selection. Soon after finishing the Lanka assignment (in July-August), India are schedule to play two-match Test series against New Zealand at home in August before World T20 begins in September.

Mathews stars in Sri Lanka's series-clinching win

Angelo Mathews hammered a brisk 80 not out as Sri Lanka posted a thrilling two-wicket victory over Pakistan in the fifth and final one-day international in Colombo on Monday to clinch the series 3-1. Mathews smashed two sixes and four boundaries in his 76-ball knock to help his team achieve a 248-run target with two balls to spare in the day-night match. Sri Lanka needed 15 runs to win in the last over bowled by paceman Mohammad Sami before Mathews completed the win with a four. Dinesh Chandimal was the other main scorer for Sri Lanka with 54.

Asian Voice - Saturday 23rd June 2012

Double trouble for Indian tennis Mahesh Bhupathi, Bopanna decline to pair up with Leander Paes

Mahesh Bhupathi on Tuesday stuck to his guns of not playing the London Olympics with his estranged friend Leander Paes after sports minister Ajay Maken made it clear that it was not his business to tell All India Tennis Association (AITA) what its selection criteria should be. After Maken washed his hands of the issue, Bhupathi reiterated his stand of not pairing up with Paes come what may and if he has to play in London it will be none other than his city-mate from Bangalore Rohan Bopanna. Maken after jumping the gun Monday by wondering why AITA cannot send two teams to London when it is entitled to quickly retraced his steps in less than 24 hours by stating that it is tennis selectors' call and not his or his ministry's. Bhupathi had approached Maken after AITA named him and Paes as the doubles team for London with the proposal that India is entitled to field two teams and he should partner Bopanna in one of them. By inference it means that Paes should play with either

Yuki Bhambri or Vishnu Vardhan, both Davis Cuppers. AITA took umbrage to Bhupathi's suggestion saying that it was an insult to India's best doubles player and one who qualified for the Olympics on merit by being in the top ten in the rankings for doubles players. The backtracking by minister is a big jolt for both Bhupathi and Bopanna. AITA has again asked Bhupathi to reconsider his decision, but within a couple of hours of the minister's statement, Bhupathi said there was no change in his stand not to play with Paes. Clarifying his statement Monday that AITA should think of sending two doubles teams for London, Maken said

he did it only because some "prominent and iconic" players brought to his notice certain issues concerning selection. Maken said he does not wish to be a part of the selection process. Earlier in the day, AITA defended its decision to pair Paes with Bhupathi and said that "asking Leander to pair with a junior player (Bhambri or Vardhan) would be the most inappropriate decision." AITA secretary general Bharat Oza said that asking Paes to pair up with a junior will be an insult to the Atlanta Games singles bronze medallist, who enjoys great respect in the international tennis circuit. Paes is the only Indian tennis player to win an Olympic medal.

Englandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s rising cricket star Tom Maynard dead at 23 Surrey's Tom Maynard, one of England's most promising batsmen, has died at the age of 23, the county said on Monday. Maynard was killed after being struck by a London Underground train in the early hours of Monday morning. In a statement, Surrey said Maynard, the son of former Glamorgan and England batsman Matthew Maynard, was "an incredibly talented young batsman". British Transport Police (BTP) confirmed a 23-yearold man, named locally as Maynard, had been hit by a train early Monday morning. A BTP spokesman said: "BTP officers were called to the line near Wimbledon Park London Underground station on Monday, 18 June after a man was struck by a District line train. "The incident was reported to BTP and was also attended by Metropolitan Police officers. "London Ambulance Service medics attended but the man, believed to be 23 years old, was pronounced dead at the scene. "The incident was reported to BTP and is currently being treated as non-suspicious. "A file will be prepared for the coroner." Tom Maynard began his career with Glamorgan

before joining Surrey at the start of last season. He left after his father was forced out from a coaching position with the Welsh county in 2010, saying his position had become "untenable". Surrey's statement said Maynard was "an incredibly talented young batsman", who had "impressed in all forms of the game". Maynard scored his maiden first-class hundred at Cardiff, Glamorgan's headquarters, last year and helped Surrey win the county 40over tournament. A first-class record of 2,384 runs in 48 matches at 32.65 with four hundreds may seem modest but it was the manner in which he compiled that tally which led many shrewd judges to speak of him as a future England batsman. Surrey's statement added: "His future potential was unlimited, with experts both

inside and outside the club predicting he would soon follow in the footsteps of his father Matthew by graduating to full England honours." Surrey chairman Richard Thompson said: "Our thoughts at this awful time are with Tom's family and friends and all those that were close to him. "Tom Maynard was a prodigiously talented young batsman who had made an incredible start to his career and was clearly destined for far greater things. "The impact Tom made in such a short period of time for Surrey spoke for itself. There is a profound sense of loss at the passing of Tom. To lose anybody at such a young age is an utterly senseless tragedy." England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chairman Giles Clarke said: "This is a very sad day for everyone connected with Surrey County Cricket club and for Glamorgan County Cricket club where Tom spent the early part of his career. "Tom was a player of enormous potential who had already represented England Lions (the national A side) and had an exciting future ahead of him. "Our hearts go out to the Maynard family for their tragic loss and we send them and all Tom's many friends and colleagues within the game our deepest sympathies."

Earllier Rohan Bopanna and Mahesh Bhupathi declined All Indian Tennis Association (AITA)'s offer to pair up with Leander Paes for the men's doubles event of the London Olympics. Following Bhupathi's adamant refusal to team up with Paes, Bopanna's stand has placed the AITA in further distress after it had nominated the estranged Bhupathi-Paes as partners. Bopanna made his disinclination to toe AITA's line despite stating that it is his "dream to represent India in Olympics". "With all respect and humility, I have been unable to accept AITA's offer and have communicated my decision to them in writing," he said. Bopanna said the very basis of his forming a team with Bhupathi was to play together in the Olympics and that the tennis body was fully aware of this. Bopanna also claimed that Paes and he do not make for a good pairing and their partnership, if it were to materialize, was unlikely to yield the desired result.

Pinki Pramanik's gender test inconclusive

The gender of Asian Games gold medalist Pinki Pramanik could not be established at the Barasat General Hospital as it did not have the facilities, and the case was sought to be referred to the better equipped SSKM Hospital in Kolkata. "There was ambiguity in the reports we got. We don't have the facilities for chromosome and hormone tests. We did the ultrasonography, but all the tests could not be done", Chief Medical Officer of North 24 Parganas district Dr Sukanta Sil said after Pramanik's medical tests lasting about three hours. The report has to be submitted to the court by June 29. Pramanik is in judicial custody accused of rape and of being 'male'. Pramanik, who won the 4x400m relay gold in the Doha Asian Games 2010, was arrested on June 14 after being accused of multiple sexual assault and misrepresentation of gender by a 30year-old estranged woman who had a live-in relationship with the athlete for two years. The middle distance runner, who had won five gold medals and one silver between 2005 and 2006, officially retired the next year, but there were reports that the athlete was not allowed in a Madurai national meet because of 'excessive male hormones'.

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