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Narendra Modi in Japan, condemns violence at Maruti's Manesar plant

Hazare gives ultimatum on Jan Lokpal bill

For report see page 24

For report see page 26

VOL 41. ISSUE 13


Pranab Mukherjee sweeps presidential poll

First & Foremost Asian Weekly in Europe 28th July to 3rd August 2012

Olympics spirit grips London

Seven years in the making, costing 9.3 billion pounds and featuring 10,490 athletes, the London Olympics opens on Friday with 302 gold medals to be won and hard-fought reputations at stake. The Olympic Stadium and Aquatics Centre in London's East End will host Beijing super-heroes Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps, who tore up the history books in 2008. On the other side of the city, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams will be the headline acts as Wimbledon welcomes the heavyweight

tennis talent. In between, Horse Guards Parade, within walking distance of Downing Street and the Houses of Parliament, hosts beach volleyball and Wembley Stadium will stage the football final. Even Lord's, the home of cricket, gets involved, opening its doors to the world's best archers. On the track, Bolt, a triple goldmedallist in Beijing in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay, faces a showdown with Jamaican team-mate Yohan Blake in the 100m final on August 5. Bolt holds the world

record of 9.58 sec but Blake is the world champion and the in-form sprinter this season, getting the better of his senior partner in the Jamaican trials last month. In the pool, Phelps, whose eight golds in Beijing took his medal tally to 14, needs five more to surpass the all-time record of 18 set by Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina between 1956 and 1964. "Obviously, we always want to do our best and swim the fastest, they are the main objectives," said Phelps, who will compete in seven events. Like Bolt, the 27-yearold Phelps also faces a national rival in the shape of Ryan Lochte, a triple Olympic champion, who can put a huge hole in his rival's dreams when the two clash in the 200m and 400m medleys. Elsewhere in the pool, eyes will also be on precocious Missy Franklin, just 17 and also racing seven events, and Australian sensation James Magnussen. Continued on page 26

Mittal and family meet Indian Olympians

Photo caption: Lashmi Mittal with Indian archers Bombaliya Devi Laishram and Chekrowulo Swuro. For full story see page 16

Britain growing hostile towards 'legal' immigrants? Britain at its final leg of the Olympic celebration is buzzing with sunshine and tourists. The Coalition government has brought in new immigration rules to control inflow of foreigners. The rules have grown tighter and stricter, yet the government still faces the worst of fates, an emptying treasury and graver scandals. The picture is very clear- a 'tolerant' Britain has now turned 'hostile' to immigrants, due to a government that is unable to cope with its growing political instability. However this 'antagonism' has been slammed in a recent case where

the Supreme Court ruled that the immigration system is in "disarray", as the senior judges said Home Office rules to curb the number of migrants have been unlawful. The Supreme Court said ministers were wrong to bar foreign workers, students and other migrants from the UK under criteria that had not been laid before Parliament. The case centred on a Pakistani man who was refused an extension to stay because he did not meet a new job qualification and salary criteria under the points-based system. Continued on page 5

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Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee’s big win in the presidential election – which will make him the 13th occupant of the Rashtrapati Bhavan – marks the return of an active politician at Raisina Hill after three successive Presidents who were either past their prime in politics or did not have a political background at all. Since July 1997, when K R Narayanan became president, the high office has been held by missile man A P J Abdul Kalam and Pratibha Patil whose careers had peaked, while Mukherjee, on the other hand, was a hands-on politician playing a crucial role in UPA affairs. His will be sworn in on Wednesday (July 25). Unlike his predecessors who were picked as safe choices by the ruling establishment of the day, Mukherjee sought the job and even bent his party to his will, aided by Continued on page 26

Let noble thoughts come to us from every side

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Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

one to one Keith Vaz MP with

Nicky Morgan MP Nicky Morgan was born in 1972 and stood as the Conservative Party Parliamentary Candidate for Loughborough at the 2005 General Election and again in 2010, when she was elected as the Member of Parliament for the constituency. She is married to Jonathan, an architect, since July 2000 and in January 2008 they had a son, Alex. Nicky grew up in Surrey and studied law at Oxford University. She worked as a solicitor specialising in Corporate Law advising a range of private and public companies from 1994 till her election in 2010. In September 2010 Nicky was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to the Rt Hon David Willetts MP, Cabinet Minister at the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills. She had previously been elected by her fellow MPs to serve on the Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee, but gave up that position following her appointment as a PPS. 1) What inspired you to stand for Parliament? I was fed up with watching the Conservative Parliamentary Party in the 1990s tear itself apart over Europe and I love dealing with differ-

3) Please tell us about your current position? I am currently Parliamentary Private Secretary to Rt Hon David Willetts, the Minister for Universities and Science. David is a pleasure to work for because he has been involved in politics and Parliament for such a long time and I have learnt a huge amount from him. Working on the tuition fees debate was a steep learning curve and I know a lot more about science now. 4) What has been the biggest obstacle in your career? A successful Labour Party under Tony Blair!

ent people and situations. 2) What are your proudest achievements in politics? Campaigning in Loughborough for over 6

Departments, securing investment in the Loughborough Inner Relief Road and Midland Mainline, leading the Mental Health debate in the main Commons chamber in June 2012.

years before being elected (that felt like a very long time as a candidate), help-

ing constituents to resolve longstanding issues with G o v e r n m e n t

5) Who has been the biggest influence on your career to date? My father who was a councillor and whose opinion I value greatly – even if he thinks I don’t listen to him!

6) What is the best thing about your current role? The ability to do positive things for my constituents and my constituency 7) And the worst? The time I have to spend away from my husband and son. 8) What are your long term goals? To be a really outstanding Member of Parliament for Loughborough. 9) If you were Secretary General of the United Nations, what one thing would you change? To do more to recognise the role of women in public life around the world. 10) If you were marooned on a desert island, which historical figures would you like to spend your time with and why? Queen Elizabeth I, Margaret Thatcher and Indira Gandhi – to hear firsthand about their experiences as great female pioneers in public life.

Face to face with Meera Syal: Bollywood Movie Production Coming to Leicester On life, love and her career Sagari Datta UK's most popular Indian actress/writer/performer Meera Syal has been featured in a recent magazine article by Lucy Cavendish as she talks about her new play, past successes and family life. She talked about how her recent play with an all Indian production Much Ado About Nothing is coming along. Syal says that she see parallel themes that run in the play and Indian traditions of love and arranged marriages and how it can be relatable to Indian society today. She relates her character Beatrice and her love for Benedick to her marriage to Sanjeev Bhaskar as she says 'He is my friend and always was.' The pair met in the mid 1990s when they worked on the sketch show Goodness Gracious Me. Cavendish also questions the nature of their relationship to BeatriceBenedick and if there were any feelings of love that was unable to be expressed. After all, Syal had been married to journalist Shekhar Bhatia. Syal assures us that there were no bitter feelings but Sanjeev and her had to be aware of the tricky situation there could have possibly been because as performers there are temporary strong feeling for each other and on set romances so both of them felt they

Meera Syal

had to be careful. They married in 2005 and have a six-year-old son, called Shaan. Even with many successes under her belt she says that it is currently harder than ever to get something edgy commissioned. 'I think television has backed off from exploring certain issues,' she says. She regards the two novels she wrote as her greatest achievement as both novels are on the national curriculum reading list. She says, 'I loved writing them and I'm very proud of them both... It is a solitary life and I don't think that suits me ' She says that this feel-

ing of alienation- of being on her own- came from her childhood. At a young age she was a victim of racism, however, she states that, 'once I made the people laugh, they stopped bullying me'. One of the main questions that Cavendish asks Syal is whether she feel she straddles between two cultures. She believes her dilemma isn't about race, but about her work life balance. In the end Cavendish asks whether she feels proud of being such a key figure in bringing British-Asian experience into our sitting rooms. Syal laughs as she replies, 'Well, in the end, I'm proud of many things and that's good, isn't it?'

Vic Sethi has confirmed that finally the bollywood superstar Sunny Deol is ready to produce a movie in Leicester since they last met and discussed about filming in Leicester in 2009. He explained the film crew that Leicester is a very vibrant city where people live in harmony and he is very passionate about his City. Vic says “ bollywood is the best vehicle to put Leicester on the map of the World and I would like to thank Sunny Deol’s and his whole team for choosing our city for filming” The film will be Yamla Pagla Deewana 2 following its great success Yamla Pagla Deewana which was launched in 2010. The bollywood legend Dharmendra along with his two sons Sunny Deol and Bobby Deol are the stars in the film. Since the 12th to the 20th of the July the whole team behind the making of the new movie has been residing in Leicester and have been very busy in looking for film locations. Vic Sethi thanks councillor Deepak Bajaj who arranged for the whole team to meet up with 6 senior Leicester City officers at the Leicester City Town Hall who have offered their support and assistance while their stay in Leicester. He added, "I would also like to thank

Vic Sethi with Sunny Deol on a Location Visit in Leicester

the Leicester City Mayor Sir Peter Soulsby who also met up with Vic and

Sunny Deol and offered full support to them while their stay in Leicester."

Terror plot foiled as husband wife fall out A planned bomb attack on Jewish sites in the English city of Manchester was foiled when the husbandand-wife team behind the plot became embroiled in a domestic dispute, prosecutors said in a case that led to the wife's conviction. The couple, of

Pakistani origin, was sentenced to jail for nearly 8 years each, the police said. Prosecutor Bobbie Cheema told Manchester crown court on Thursday that police were called when Mohammed Sajid Khan, 33, and his wife Shasta, 38, got into an argument last July.

Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012


Vote buying during Pranab Mukherjee’s election Pranab Mukherjee has been anointed as the new president of India. As finance minister until recently, the veteran leader of the Congress party presided over the deterioration of the country’s economic prospects. Now there is a chance that those left behind may redirect a government that has badly lost its way. Poll victories have become rare indeed for the increasingly unpopular ruling party. Yet an electoral college of nearly 5,000 national and state legislators has given Mr Mukherjee a five-year presidency. That was thanks, in part, to mercenary motives: leaders of two crucial states, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, fell behind Mr Mukherjee as the central government promised aid worth some $12 billion. In plain words this is called buying of votes by inducing money or other incentives. This is a corrupt practice and the ruling party is not expected to indulge in such practices to gain votes. Congress which has been beset by scandals has grown generally clumsy of late. But for this election at least, it showed a flash of its once-deft self. Days before the poll, the only other candidate, Purno Sangma, in effect conceded he needed “miracles” to win. Promoted by the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, he stood no chance once Mr Mukherjee got backing even from Shiv Sena and from Congress’ most troublesome ally, West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee. The result matters in at least two ways. The outgoing president, Pratibha Patil, was a bland nonentity. By contrast, power-hungry Mukherjee, who has spent four decades at the summit of Indian politics, has influence that extends, tentacle-like, across Delhi and beyond. On rare occasions, the presidency has moments of great power. A hung parliament is almost certain after the next general election in 2014, when the president may pick which party tries first to form a coalition. Those tentacles could prove handy for a diminished Congress. Since Sonia Gandhi is keen to anoint her son Rahul as the next prime minister, Mr Mukherjee can play a decisive role. Now that Mr Mukherjee has been made president, Congress could try getting government to function again. The 76-year-old’s three-year spell as finance minister was ignominious. He oversaw GDP growth that fell to 5.3% in the first three months of this year, from over 8% just over a year before; high inflation; a collapsing rupee; surging deficits and a fiscal mess. Plans for vague and retrospective taxes dismayed investors, foreign and local. Worse, he bungled urgent reforms, notably over opening foreign investment in the retailing industry, and failing to push through a

goods and services tax and to cut costly subsidies. It was not all his fault, however. A cabinet minister, Salman Kurshid, admitted the obvious, calling the government directionless. He did not need to spell out that Manmohan Singh, the elderly prime minister, cannot impose his will, nor that populists like West Bengal’s Ms Banerjee block reform. Meanwhile there is administrative paralysis in the face of corruption scandals. With Mr Mukherjee’s ascent, a reshuffle is expected. Mr Singh, as a stand-in finance minister, has made welcome noises about getting the economy moving again. He could next bring back P Chidambaram, the home minister, who presided over finance for most of Congress’s first term (2004-09), when the economy roared. Or he could call on Montek Singh Ahluwalia, the brainy head of planning. More daring would be to give the charge to Jairam Ramesh, Anand Sharma or Sachin Pilot. A dream political change would signal that new leaders, less tainted by graft, would try to restore public finances, push through reform and promote growth. India’s mood is waiting to be lifted. Local firms wallow in cash, hungry for a chance to invest, but they need predictability about policy and decision-making. The main question is will Manmohan Singh government give a big push to reforms and restore confidence of trade and industry. Even foreign firms, which are willing to invest, hold back, unsure of the politics. Yet expecting decisive change from Congress is probably a fantasy. The instincts of Sonia Gandhi, the party’s president, are to seek votes from villagers (who still make up two-thirds of the population), with promises of welfare, make-work schemes and food rations. It would take skilful manoeuvring to do that and also promote bold, liberalising reforms, such as cutting fuel subsidies. More troubling, sycophancy to the Gandhi dynasty dictates that no young figure can outshine Rahul Gandhi, who had largely been absent from high-profile politics since a defeat in Uttar Pradesh in March. Some in Congress say he will be back to take a big political role. Rahul himself has confirmed this, saying he is ready to play a “more active role in party and government.” That is striking, given an earlier refusal to join Mr Singh’s administration. It will immediately raise expectations that he is preparing to lead Congress for the vote in 2014. His elevation alone may not be enough to end the “crisis of credibility” for Congress, but it marks a long-awaited arrival in national politics.

Olympics will leave glorious legacy for Londoners The Olympics will leave a glorious legacy for the Londoners to enjoy for many years. It will inspire positive social, economic and environmental change. At the end of every Olympics it falls on to characterise the competition in a simple phrase; exceptional, magnificent, unforgettable – just a few of the descriptions used for recent editions of the Games. The Games themselves have all the elements necessary for success – not just for the two weeks of competition, but long, long after the flame has been extinguished. This is thanks to the local organisers who have firmly rooted the foundations of the Games in the concept of legacy: what the event will leave behind when the last athlete turns off the lights in the Olympic Village and heads for home. London Organising Committee chairman Sebastian Coe knows he has some very tough customers to please. As he recently put it: “The most demanding stakeholder any city now has is not the International Olympic Committee, not the government. It’s actually the population of the city and the country where you’re delivering the Games. And the key question they ask is: What are you leaving behind?” And London 2012 stands to leave behind a great

deal for the citizens of the host city and country. They spoke of inspiring a generation, of revitalising longdepressed areas of London, of providing Londoners with improved infrastructure, employment opportunities, and access to sports facilities. With the help of unwavering governmental support at all levels, the organisers have already taken a huge step toward achieving this and much more. The Games will help to unlock talent. And the first priority of the Games is to make the UK a world-leading sporting nation, make people become increasingly active, with a goal of seeing two million people more active through focused investment in sporting infrastructure. The new focus on sporting excellence in England will reinvigorate clubs and coaching, which will attract and bring on young sporting talent. It has also encouraged Indians towards better sports. Indian participants and guests are getting best of the treatments in the game. We can expect them to do better than what they did in Beijing. Despite some minor problems over security, London Olympics will be a grand success and even better organized than the Beijing, assures Sebastian Coe.

Indian youth should emulate Hashim Amla’s deeds The heroic deeds of Indian descendant Hashim Amla and Pakistan-origin Imran Tahir during the EnglandSouth Africa cricket match are worth emulating for Indians. Amla gave his heart to the game and became the first South African batsman to score over 300 runs in a Test innings at The Oval. Imran Tahir also played a crucial role in the victory of Proteas. Along with Graeme Smith and Jacques Kallis, Amla smashed a number of records. It is more gratifying that Amla is a man of Indian origin. His parents have migrated from Gujarat. We at AV salute to his heroics performance. Amla’s innings enabled him to nab a handful of records – his unbeaten 311 becomes the 20th highest all-time individual Test score in an innings (with the highest being Brian Lara’s 400 against England in 200304), the first Test triple hundred by a South African batsman and consequently the highest individual score by a Proteas batsman in Tests (beating out AB de

Villiers’ 278 against Pakistan in November 2010), and the sixth triple Test hundred ever scored in England. But the sad thing is that few youngsters of Indian origin are excelling in the field of sports. One thing is the lack of encouragement by the parents. Indian parents think that choosing sports as a profession is not high paying. They want their wards to excel in studies and earn handsome pay. When Indians are good in all other fields we should not lag behind in sports. It is shame that there is only one Indian in Great Britain’s Olympics team. The parents should encourage their wards to take up sports more seriously. Mr Mark Ramprakash who recently retired after a 25-year career in county cricket, admits that there is racism in sports also. But if you are good in any sports, nobody can deny you from achieving your dream. Only you have to work hard to gain recognition. Ramprakash says, “If young players show promise they’re on to quite good salaries quite quickly.”


Thought for the Week

Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, 'I will try again tomorrow'. - Mary Anne Radmacher

Political Sketchbook Alpesh Patel’s A New President of the World’s Largest Democracy Dear Mr President of India, Congratulations upon your appointment as the Head of State of the World’s largest Democracy; a political system which gives vote and voice to every adult. As you prepare your inaugural speech, I want to give you some thoughts. It is said more people live now on the planet than have ever did since the beginning of time. So it is that within the borders of your India, more people live in poverty than anywhere else in the world. But this is not a tragedy – it is an opportunity. Imagine Mr President, if in your short Presidential term you could do that one thing no politician ever could – have one singular cause – one national challenge – and bring a nation together and in so doing save the world itself. I suggest you recall the words of the US President, John F Kennedy who said in his Inaugural speech ‘...the belief that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state, but from the hand of God.’ Fundamental to those rights, is the right to live free from poverty. So I suggest in your inaugural speech you mimic Kennedy and state, ‘I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of removing child poverty and malnutrition. If we were to go only half way or reduce our sights in the face of difficulty, it would be better not to go at all. And let every nation know... that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and the success of our children. Let the word go forth.....that the torch free of the burden of poverty will be passed to a new generation of Indians.’ Imagine the advantage you have over Kennedy. You have a bigger economy in India today, than the United States had when Kennedy became President. You have more people to do your bidding. And you have a simpler task than putting a man on the moon. I remind you, the Head of a nuclear power, what else Kennedy said that fateful January day in 1961 – ‘Man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life’. So Mr President, when you ask what you can do for your country – this is it. Should you not wish to take up my suggestion, then you should know Kennedy also said, ‘...let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God's work must truly be our own." So it is Mr President, in this the land of the most ancient of faiths, the decision resides with you whether you have the vision to manifest God himself. May God grant you the wisdom and the courage to make the right choice. Alpesh Patel

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Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Gang of three who terrorised jewellery shops jailed Three members of an armed robbery gang which terrorised jewellers in a series of raids have been jailed. Leicester Crown Court heard masked men wielded hammers, axes, a samurai sword and knives as they targeted three jewellery stores in the city's Golden Mile. The gang planned the raids in detail, spying on the shops beforehand, buying cheap getaway vehicles and using an accomplice to pose as a customer to get the security door open. The rest of the gang would then rush into the stores, threatening staff and smashing display cabinets. Last Friday, Zaid Pervez (22) was jailed for 10 years and Mohammed Miah (24) and Qasim Sultan (19) were both jailed for nine years. The sentences were welcomed by business people in the Golden Mile. Bihesh Pala, owner of Alanka Jewellers, in Melton Road, which was targeted in one of the robberies, said: "It was a very traumatic incident






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Zaid Pervez

Mohammed Miah

for everyone who was in the shop at the time. Very frightening. This is the kind of result we had been hoping for." Ratilal Govind, Belgrave Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinator and chairman of the Jewellers of the Golden Mile group, said: "Everyone is happy at this outcome. We worked hard with police during their investigation. These were awful crimes, so we are happy the perpetrators have been caught and punished." David Herbert, prosecuting, said during yesterday's hearing that the gang, from Birmingham, first struck at the Alankar Jewellers on January 1, 2011. He said: "They threatened the terrified victims, ushering them into a back room while they smashed glass dis-

Qasim Sultan

play cabinets. They got away with jewellery worth ÂŁ43,500." He said they struck again at Sunny Jewellers, in Belgrave Road, on January 29, and escaped with jewellery. "Sultan hit one of the shop staff with an axe. Fortunately, the injuries were limited to severe bruising." The gang was arrested in Birmingham but were released on bail. Mr Herbert said they struck again at Naran Jewellers, in Melton Road, on March 29. Staff pressed the panic button and an antitheft device filled the shop with dense smoke before the gang fled empty-handed. The gang then raided a shop in A y l e s b u r y , Buckinghamshire, on May 9, taking jewellery

Sarah Wilkes

worth ÂŁ30,000. Pervez, of Fallows Road, Sparkbrook, was convicted of four counts of conspiracy. His lawyer, Gerry Bermingham, said: "He has fallen into bad company." Miah, of Foxcote Drive, Shirley, and Sultan, of Benton Avenue, Sparkbrook, pleaded guilty to the same charges. Zaheer Afzal, for Miah, said his client had committed the crimes to pay off illegal money lenders "who attacked him". Mohammed Amir Riaz, for Sultan, said: "He just went along with the others." Sarah Wilkes (41) of Foxcote Drive, Shirley, pleaded guilty to a charge relating to the robbery in Aylesbury and will be sentenced at a later date

Birmingham riot deaths were 'terrible accident' Eight men have been found not guilty of murdering three friends during last summer's riots in Birmingham. Haroon Jahan, 20, and brothers Shazad Ali, 30, and Abdul Musavir, 31, died on 10 August after being hit by a car in Winson Green. Appealing for calm after the verdicts, Mr Justice Flaux told Birmingham Crown Court: "On any view, this has been a terrible case - a tragic and pointless loss of three young lives. "However, by their verdicts the jury have decided that this was not a deliberate killing, that there was no plan to kill these three young men. The jury have decided that this was a terrible accident." CCTV footage of the crash had formed the centre piece of the prosecution, with the prosecution claiming it showed an orchestrated three-car "chariot charge" which had been planned minutes before. But the eight defendants denied there had been any such plan. The jury was told the CCTV footage could not in itself be regarded as proof of murder, but the Crown pointed to other circumstantial evidence which it claimed supported its case. Prosecutors said the

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Haroon Jahan, Shazad Ali and Abdul Musavir Haroon Jahan, Shazad Ali and Abdul Musavir died in hospital

destruction of a mobile phone, CCTV film of vehicle movements in nearby streets and a hand signal from one of the cars was evidence of a plan hatched during a three-minute "window" before the

deaths. But this was described as implausible speculation by the three men driving the cars, Ian Beckford, 30, of Quinton, Adam King, 24, of no fixed address; and Joshua Donald, 27, of

Ladywood. The men and their passengers described the allegations of a murderous plan as "ridiculous" and "utter rubbish". The crowd on the streets had gathered to protect local businesses and homes that had been targeted by looters the previous evening. Defence lawyer Paul Lewis QC had told the court the collision happened when the three cars involved came "under serious attack" from the crowd. The defence also claimed the crowd were masked and armed with

Birmingham car hire businessman who loaned to crooks is jailed A man who ran a car rental business exclusively for crooks has been jailed for two years. Mohammed Afran had a fleet of 21 cars that he loaned to criminals – and even reported them stolen when they were seized by police. He and his accomplice – both on benefits – raked in more than ÂŁ5,000 a month from their dodgy dealings, with Afran keeping tabs of his transactions in a school book belonging to his stepdaughter. But the 30-year-old, from Washwood Heath, was jailed at Birmingham Crown Court after he admitted offences including laundering more than ÂŁ90,000, perverting the course of justice and fraud. His partner-in-crime, Mohammed Salam, 31, and also from Washwood Heath, was handed a 12month community order for his part in the scam. After sentencing, Sgt David Wilson, from Birmingham East Police, said: “Both these men were gathering considerable wealth through their criminal activity, while at the same time defrauding the Department for Work and Pensions out of thousands of pounds every year. They were both committing and facilitating

crime within Washwood Heath. Their blatant disregard for the law was only exacerbated by Afran using his step-daughter’s school book to conceal their criminal activity, which is particularly deplorable. Afran and Salam have wriggled and squirmed to avoid justice for 18 months within the court system, altering pleas, changing solicitors multiple times and lying repeatedly. Hopefully they will now realise crime does not pay.� The pair were brought to justice when five addresses were raided in March 2010 and more than £55,000 was recovered. Afran was said by the court to have benefited to the tune of £58,000 but no longer has any remaining assets after police seized all the vehicles.

bricks, sticks and, in one case, a sword. Mr Beckford, who was driving the Mazda which hit the men, had told jurors only a "monster" would have deliberately driven at them. "I was just frightened, I just wanted to get

past the group, that's all I wanted to do," he said. “I could not just drive my car into people and kill them. I haven't got it in me to do something like that. I wouldn't do something like that, not in a million years I wouldn't."

Mohammed Afran

Birmingham travel agent faces jail over religious holidays fraud A rogue travel agent is facing a jail sentence after being convicted of fraud and ruining customers’ religious pilgrimages to Saudi Arabia. Saleem Akhtar was prosecuted after trading standards officers received complaints about problems during a couple’s ÂŁ5,600 Hajj trip to the holy cities of Mecca and Medina. Victim Mohamed Mughal told Birmingham Magistrates’ Court he was forced to “sleep under the starsâ€? when a coach ferrying him and his wife around left without them. He also com-

plained that the length of their trip was shortened and said they were forced to share a hotel room with four strangers. The court heard a trading standards probe into Akhtar’s Alum Rock-based travel firm, Embassy Express Ltd, revealed he was flouting consumer protection rules by pretending he was covered by Air Travel Organisers Licensing, which protects travellers on package holidays. He was found guilty of two counts of fraud, two of breaching package tour regulations, and seven of using the ATOL logo

contrary to consumer protection from unfair trading regulations. Akhtar was cleared of one charge of breaching package travel, holidays and tour rules. District Judge Sham Qureshi warned he could be jailed for up to a year when he is sentenced at Birmingham Crown Court on August 17. Giving evidence, Akhtar, 44, of Stockingstone Road, Luton, said: “I am a Muslim and believe what you do in this life you live to reap in your next. I would never try to rip off another Muslim. I

Saleem Akhtar, owner of Alum Rock based Embassy Express Ltd

swear I had no intention of obtaining money by any kind of deception.� Thousands of pilgrims travel to Mecca from the West Midlands each year for the Hajj,

which is one of the five pillars of Islam. After the case, trading standards bosses urged any travellers who felt cheated to make contact.


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Model who fell off balcony was about to divorce husband A model who fell to her death from her husband’s apartment was on the point of divorcing him, an inquest was told on Monday. Sahar Daftary, 23, a former face of Asia beauty contest winner, had married Rashid Jamil, a property developer, against the wishes of her family in a Muslim ceremony in 2007. She agreed to go ahead with the Sharia marriage even though she had discovered that he was already married and had two children. The relationship soon soured and became acrimonious. Before her death in 2008, she told police that Mr Jamil had raped her, but later withdrew the allegation. She also complained that he had treated her like a slave. Ms Daftary visited Mr Jamil’s £300,000 flat in a waterfront complex in Salford Quays, near Manchester, to collect her passport, clothes and other belongings. Mr Jamil was arrested on suspicion of murder and questioned by police before being released on

the couple ever got divorced. Mariam said Mr Jamil had travelled to S a h a r ’ s mother’s house in London with two suitcases after his wife had left him, claiming he could not live without her. She added: “I think he was obsessed with her.” T h e C r o w n Prosecution Sahar and Rashid Service ruled that he would bail. Sahar’s sister not face charges and conMariam Daftary Karim cluded that the death was told the inquest that not being treated as suspiSahar was afraid of cious. Earlier, the inquest heights and did not like was told that police invesgoing out on the balcony tigated claims that anothat Mariam’s flat in er man had confessed to London, as reported by pushing Ms Daftary off Manchester Evening the balcony. It is undernews.She said Sahar had stood that the police have told her Mr Jamil was since closed that inquiry. allegedly addicted to The inquest is expected to cocaine – and that he told last until the end of the guests at their wedding he week. would give her £200,000 if


Mother Charged With Child Neglect Avoids Jail Aysiea Mahroof, 27, regularly left her seven month old baby alone in the house while she was on the school run with her oldest children, aged 5 and 7. In total, this amounted to an hour a day, and so she admitted to a charge of neglect. However, she did not know of its illegality, thus she has been cleared of the potential 10 year prison sentence, and given a community order with 12 months supervision instead. Mahroof, pictured, said that every time she left her baby, her 'heart was pounding'. An explanation given was that she didn't receive childcare help

from family, because she refused an arranged marriage. Judge Vivian Manning-Davies explained her decision 'What this case is not, like so many in court, is that you left children for

only self-interest,’ she said. ‘But this is not a case of you being an uncaring mother - quite the contrary'. She likened the case to the Prime Minister's error of leaving his daughter in a pub, thinking that she was in the car. After the the police were alerted by Mahroof's neighbours, she pleaded with the police officers, asking if she would be let go if she did not do it again. Mahroof said that she thought she was 'keeping her safe'. In the end, the Judge sympathised, saying,‘A parent makes mistakes in relation to children'.

Olympic torch visits East London

Britain growing hostile towards 'legal' immigrants? Continued from page 1 However, those requirements were detailed in a code of practice and were not included in official Immigration Rules that are presented to parliament. The Home Secretary is bound by law to put any immigration “rule” changes to MPs and was therefore wrong to refuse Hussain Zulfiquar Alvi his extension, the Supreme Court concluded. Lord Hope, the lead justice in the case, said he recognised the judgment could create a huge workload for Parliamentarians. On the other hand, Britain's most prominent business leaders - including Karan Bilimoria of Cobra Beer has recently appealed to Prime Minister David Cameron to remove foreign students from official immigration figures to avoid choking off a valuable source of wealth and skills. In a letter published in The Sunday Times, 37 business leaders have warned that visa restrictions designed to bring net immigration below 100,000 a year will deter wealthy foreigners from outside the European Union. Among those calling on Cameron to reverse the policy are Sir Martin Sorrell, chief executive of WPP; Lord Jones, former director-general of the Confederation of British Industry and trade minister; and Lord Bilimoria, the Cobra beer co-founder

who came to Britain as a student (see more on 11). Despite of the changes that have been directly affecting the treasury and some genuine students who want to be a part of the great British education system, a latest report has revealed that 63,000 bogus students may have entered the country. The majority of bogus students, a whopping 62 percent, are from Burma, followed by applicants from other countries such as Bangladesh, India and Nigeria. Despite the evidence, the Home Office has dropped a key assessment - the intention to leave the country after completion of studies - from its interview programme, Migration Watch charged. But immigration minister Damian Green said the assessment criteria would be kept under review to protect the interests of the UK and officers would be given power to refuse visas if they feel the applicants are not genuine. According to the Migration Watch, the lack of exit checks are a major stumbling block to check on the students, to find out how many of them have actually left the country. A recent report from the UK Border Agency revealed that they lost track of over 150,000 overstaying immigrants, the majority of them international students. Keith Vaz, the Home Affairs Chair Committee, talking about the missing migrants have said, "The

UK Border Agency has acquired it's own Bermuda triangle where cases disappear within it and it is very difficult to track them down and get them out. The back log consist of asylum cases, some of them historical immigration cases, cases that people have refused, leave to remain in this country but are still in this country but don't know where they are, so we are taking about a back log that is the size of Newcastle - uponThyme... What we think should happen is that there should be a focus on the culture of the UKBA so cases should be dealt with quickly and expeditiously, senior managers should not be given bonuses and the £3.5 million they were given last year should in our view be handed back to the tax payer." On Foreign students are a major contributor to the British economy and universities and business leaders are even pitching for the removal of students from the category of immigrants. Immigrant students generate around £8bn a year in terms of tuition fees alone and which may increase to £17bn by 2025, according to a projection by the heads of 68 British universities. Stricter policies by the government could drive away the students to other destinations such as US, Australia and Germany, and it is high time Britain understands the predicaments.

The face of east London particularly the Stratford area has completely changed. The Torch arrived on Saturday 21st July in Newham and on 22nd July Sunday 2012 in London Borough of Redbridge. Thousands of people of all the origins attended the festival. photo courtesy: Dharam Sahdev

Olympic Torch arrives at Changes Nightclub - Harrow On Wednesday 18th July 2012 Harrow Association of Disabled People (HAD) hosted it's Changes Nightclub which is an integrated nightclub for all people with disabilities. After making a special request to one of the Olympic sponsors to attend the club so that the serviceusers have a once in a lifetime experience / opportunity to see it. This wish became true thanks to Lloyds TSB for making this happen. The event took place at The Red Brick Cafe,Harrow Healthy Living Centre, 38 - 40 High Street, Harrow.

Hitesh Bhatt, Head of Digital Acquisition, Lloyds TSB with a few service users



Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Asian Voice launches

community campaign against changes to UK immigration laws

By Spriha Srivastava

Sania Nishtar talks about healthcare Dr. Sania Nishtar, a trained cardiologist was in UK recently to talk about the healthcare system in Pakistan at the House of Lords. Dr. Nishtar spoke at the Parliamentary Seminar in the House of Lords and launched a Leaders’ Network to help replicate her work in other countries. She is Pakistan’s first female cardiologist and is one of the world’s most influential commentators on global health issues, and a major proponent of health reform in her country. She is founder and President of Heartfile, Pakistan’s top health NGO and think tank, which also acts as an umbrella organization for Pakistan’s Health Policy Forum (PHPF). In support of Heartfile she has created Heartfile Health Financing (HHF), an innovation in health financing which uses technology to support cash transfers to the poorest of the poor in Pakistan. In a country where over 70 percent of the 180 million population pay for healthcare directly from their pockets, the poor have no protection from unaffordable expenditure, and government attempts at intervention have been plagued by abuse and patronage. Through her organi-

Dr. Sania Nishtar

sation, Heartfile, Sania has set up an innovative health financing scheme which uses technology to provide cash transfers to Pakistan’s poorest of the poor. Out of a population of nearly 190 million, of whom at least 25% live below the poverty line, less than 26% of the population is covered for healthcare costs. As a result, they spend catastrophically, become indebted – and forego treatment. Sania’s response has been to create a webaccessible technology platform and health equity fund. Requests for funding assistance are made by health workers on behalf of their patients using mobile phones. There is a validation system in place with the final step being the patient’s unique identification number on the national database where

all citizens are registered. Money can then be released from the health equity fund quickly. As a result, patients can be treated in a matter of days rather than months, having made the original application – which, of course, is saving lives. In many developing countries, the mobile phone is becoming the information portal for healthcare workers. Sania believes that Pakistan leads the world in taking mobile telephony to a new level – in developing a system to help fund the healthcare expenses of poor people. In order to make her organization more effective, Dr. Nishtar created a Heartfile Leaders’, comprising distinguished international figures in the healthcare field who support the objectives of the fund – to protect impoverished households in Pakistan from spending excessively on medical expenses. They believe that the success of the Heartfile model can be replicated in other countries facing similar problems with disadvantaged populations. Last year, Sania won the global innovation award from the Rockefeller Foundation for her work with Heartfile. Bill Clinton has also won this award.

Bollywood at your fingertips Ever wondered where to find a library of bollywood films with easy access, good print and wonderful collection? Sanona is a brand new on-demand film service that allows viewers to stream films direct to their home screens – be it via a PC, MAC or through a television, giving consumers choice and most importantly viewing flexibility. Now you can watch the film you want, when you want! The company, which launched earlier this month, has already secured film deals with some of the industry’s biggest film studios, including Yash Raj Films, UTV and Reliance Entertainment. These partnerships will give audiences access to

some of the biggest and most recent box office smashes like Raajneeti, Band Baaja Baaraat and Paa amongst a host of others, as well as a catalogue of unmissable classics including

Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, Silsila, and the evergreen Kabhi Kabhie. Adam Davies, the founder and CEO of Sanona, has been developing the concept of this online offering for the past year, and says of the service: “Building Sanona and creating a digital platform for the world’s second biggest

film industry has been a truly exciting and exhilarating journey. To see the team’s ideas and vision come to life is great, and the response from the Indian film industry has been fantastic. They recognise that the digital arena can’t be ignored and they believe that Sanona will bring them the audiences that love not just Bollywood but all Indian cinema.” Sanona is based on the basic principles of demand and supply - a customer wants to watch a film, they simply browse the site, choose the film and pay to watch it. Sanona was also a sponsor for the 3rd annual London Indian Film Festival (LIFF) this month.

Let us know what you think. Email Spriha at

In the last 2 years the British Government has tried innumerable ways to target the immigrants. It has resulted into endless confusion with hardly much of a difference in the numbers. Asian Voice has run several stories raising issues that affect immigrants directly and indirectly. In the 16th June issue (page 1) we spoke about a 'future' campaign and invited our dear readers to write to us about their feeling regarding the upcoming laws to be enforced on immigrants who want to settle here with their families. This week we have launched the campaign formally and we want more of you, in fact all of you to support us to make our government realise Britain is a multicultural country, where every tradition and faith should be given its due credit. The upcoming changes are to directly and severely affect our culture, age old traditions and our ways of life. We need the government give us our due 'right to equality and life'. Read on to know more about our campaign and the ways you can support this campaign. On the 9th July 2012 the Government will begin to introduce changes to immigration laws which will restrict the number of people who are able to come to this country. There are two main changes; they will begin to abolish the right of appeal for family visitors applying for a visa to visit the United Kingdom; and they will introduce minimum income requirement for persons wishing to sponsor a family immigration application. These changes will have a profoundly negative impact on many of our readers, on our grandparents our husbands and wives, our aunties and uncles and cousins. We as a newspaper feel it is only right to launch a campaign against the changes that is why we urge you to join our community campaign for families against the proposals.

Main changes at a glance Changes to family migration routes: l Will introduce a new minimum income requirement for persons wishing to sponsor an application for a nonEEA national partner l Will have to demonstrate a minimum gross annual income of £18,600 l The minimum threshold increases if the applicant has children; £22,400 for one child and an additional £2,400 for each child l Previously there was no minimumincome requirement l Allowing adult and elderly to settle in the UK only where they can demonstrate as a result of age, illness or disability, they require a level of long-term

personal care that can only be provided by a relative in the UK l Will extend the minimum probationary period for settlement from two years to five years Right of appeal against visa decisions: l Uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces and first cousins will no longer be considered to be family visitors for appeals purposes l They will no longer be able to appeal against family visitor visa refusal decisions l The government intends to eventually completely remove the right to appeal to any visa application What we are doing We are writing to all MPs to urge them to join our campaign against the Government’s proposals We are writing to Ministers at the Home Office to ask them to review the decision

How you can help You can write to your MP to raise awareness about the issue here: Sign up to our petition calling for the Government to urgently review the changes online: or by post to: Petition Against Government’s Immigration Law Changes, Asian Business Publications Ltd, Karma Yoga House, 12 Hoxton Market, London N1 6HW.

Get your thirst quenched this summer Get ready to be bedazzled this summer with the new drink in town – Twiss Apple with a twist of blackcurrant. Twiss Apple with blackcurrant is the only drink of its kind in the carbonated drinks space in the UK. Containing real fruit juices, the drink is free from artificial flavours and sweeteners. It is also suitable for vegetarians and is approved by the Vegetarian Society of UK. With its unrivalled taste and unique style packaging, the drink is bound to capture people’s taste buds this summer. Manufactured in the UK, the drink has been launched at the independents and cash and carry in June across UK and will be supported by a strong digital and TV campaign. All Twiss cans have QR codes printed linked to the Twiss Facebook page. In just few months from the launch, Twiss’ social media page on Facebook has garnered over 3,500 likes with more action

planned this year. So stay tuned! Twiss Apple and Blackcurrant is the fourth flavour to be launched by Twiss Drinks Ltd in 9 months. Their other three popular flavours are Mango with a twist of lime, Passion fruit with a twist of orange and Lemon with a twist of

mint. RRP of all flavours is 59p per can. Don’t miss out on special launch Trade offers. Contact us on 0203 435 8390 for more details. Consumers and fans – don’t miss the opportunity to win prizes on our Facebook at

Pannaben Lakhani, Zeenal Rishi Lakhani, Rishi Lakhani, Shyam Lakhani, Vasant Lakhani from City Pavillion, with Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and others


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Vijay Vaghela to be the new CEO Mital Dodhia Vijay Vaghela, Trinity Mirror's long-serving finance director is set to replace Sly Bailey as the chief executive of The Mirror's publishers, reported a national daily. Mr Vaghela joined the Mirror group as an internal auditor in 1994, advanced to become the Group Treasurer, and then took on the role of Director of Accounting and Treasury. In May 2003, he was made Group Finance Director and joined the Board. Mr Vaghela began his career in finance in 1988, in Touche Ross (now Deloitte), where he qualified as an Associated Chartered Accountant. Trinity Mirror own various

Vijay Vaghela

newspapers, including The Daily Record, The People, and many regional titles. Although there is not yet a definitive shortlist of potential candidates, Mr Vaghela has been acting chief executive since the early departure of Ms Bailey in June. Moreover,

he is currently working with the new chairman, David Grigson, is managing the search for Ms Bailey's replacement. A date for the announcement of Ms Bailey's successor is not yet set, but a person familiar with Trinity has said that the new chief executive will not be named when interim results are reported on the 2nd of August. If he is appointed as the new chief executive, he may face numerous challenges, as advertising revenues and circulation has dropped in recent years, as reported by the FT. Despite this, a promotion to the role of chief executive would definitely result in a significant pay rise for Mr Vaghela.


Marsha Singh Marsha Singh, who has died aged 57, was Labour MP for Bradford West from 1997 until his resignation through ill heath in March this year. Punjab-born but brought up in Bradford, was a Sikh representing a 38 per cent Muslim seat, a strong champion of the city, its industries and its communities. At Westminster he impressed during an eight-year stint on the Home Affairs Select Committee, and in the run-up to the 2010 election was PPS to the Home Office immigration minister Phil Woolas. Despite Bradford’s sizeable Asian population, it had never had an Asian MP. But prior to the 1997 election Singh replaced the sitting left-

winger Max Madden as Labour candidate for Bradford West. In the landslide that brought Tony Blair to power, he took the seat with a majority of 3,187 – which by 2010 he had increased to 5,763. After his re-election for a third term in 2005, Singh moved to the I n t e r n a t i o n a l Development Select Committee, serving on it until his resignation. He had a walk-on part in the parliamentary expenses scandal in 2009. The arbiter, Sir Thomas Legg, ordered him to repay more than £5,000 in overcharged mortgage interest payments; Singh good-naturally declared himself “happy to pay, as none of my claims were nefarious”.

Preserve your heritage Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar has been serving the British Asian community for the last 40 years. Each year we go from strength to strength in terms of quality content and circulation. We give our valued readership a comprehensive news platform as well as other features on health, entertainment, business & finance, politics,sport ex... On the auspicious event of 40th Anniversary of Gujarat Samachar and Asian Voice, we are proud to present once in a life time opportunity to create your very own personal documentary film. In today's world it is necessary to preserve our culture and history. Moreover physical printouts have limited value and difficult to preserve. We are proud to present this opportunity to film your family or firms details and traditions for the generations to come. We can design this documentary/ talk show as per your requirements. For eg. success story/journey, family oriented, personal, business related, career profile, family tree- who we are, where are we from etc.... Interview to be conducted by well known and professional persons from Gujarat /UK

Technical details/ Terms and conditions: l Interview/Meeting time: 2 hours l Can be arranged at your place or our office. l All the materials/photos to be provided together. We shall not accept part of it later. l Commentary in English/Gujarati. Final video upto 30 minutes. l On this celebration of 40th Anniversary, we offer this at a discounted price of only £1250+VAT, which could cost up to £3000 to £5000 elsewhere. l The final copy of the documentary will be scripted, edited and will have voice over by a professional artist. l Payment terms 50% in advance and remaining 50% on delivery of the CD. l Please contact Alka Shah immediately on 07944 151 893/07875 229 122/ 020 7749 4002 or email on

Fundraising dinner organised at the Parliament for the Heart and Stroke Research campaign, Northwick Park Jayshree Shah His partnership with Woolas came to an abrupt end at the 2010 election. Marsha Singh married Sital Kaur in 1971; she died in 2001. In 2006 he married, secondly, Kildip Mann. He is survived by a son and a daughter from his first marriage, a stepson and a stepdaughter. Marsha Singh, born October 11 1954, died July 17 2012.

Corner shop immigrants face jail for conning customers Two illegal immigrants face jail after being found guilty of using a money transfer service to con customers out of almost £50,000. Syed Bukhari, 25, and Siyed Asem, 58, ran the legitimate service from a corner shop they set up in Gloucester. But when customers entrusted them with their cash they skimmed hundreds of pounds a time off the top of the sums. They also offered made up exchange rates and pocketed the difference. All the while they were staying in the country illegally as 'overstayers' because their visas had expired. The court heard how the two men set up the shop selling sweets and food as a way to make a living. But soon they began offering the entirely legal money transfer service to


The Attorney General, Rt Hon Dominic Grieve QC MP, a patron of the Heart and Stroke Research Campaign at Northwick Park Institute for Medical Research (NPIMR), hosted the annual Dinner at the House of Commons to raise vital funds for research on Friday, 29th June. Following a warm welcome by the host, Miss Sonal Dave, the MC for the evening, introduced Professor John Nicholls, the Chair of the Board of Trustees who spoke about the history of the Institute. He then introduced the Director, Professor Shervanthi Homer-Vanniasinkam, a renowned vascular surgeon, who spoke about NPIMR being a ‘unique and independent institute, where the scientists and clinicians work closely together to translate research from the laboratory to the bedside as quickly as possible’. She went on to talk about cardiovascular diseases, the patients she treats regu-

larly and the importance of undertaking research in order to find better ways of diagnosing and, in time, preventing these conditions for occurring. Following a wonderful four course dinner, Mr Kiran Patel, a member of the Golden Heart Club and a Trustees of the Institute, spoke about how the research at the Institute will benefit future generations and urged guests to join him as a member of the Golden Heart Club. Dr Pranav Somaiya, the Research Lead for the Centre for Investigational Proteomics at the Institute spoke about proteomics research and explained the vision behind the research. This was followed by an auction which raised over £4,000 and a raffle draw which raised over £1,400. Jayshree Shah, the Fundraising Manager for the Campaign, then spoke about various ways the Campaign raises funds, including, the annual ‘Walk for Heart

and Stroke’, the ‘Gala Dinner and Dance’ both events due to be held in September this year and the different events which supporters can enter, including the coveted London Marathon. She urged guests to think about ways they can help to raise funds and encouraged them to adopt the campaign as their nominated cause. She also asked guests to become ‘ambassadors’ of the campaign by raising its awareness. The evening ended with a vote of thanks from the Director to everyone who supported the event. Particular thanks go to support to the staff from Barclays Bank Plc who helped raised an additional £3000 with their matchfundraising scheme. The campaign raised over £22,000 from this event. For more details on the Heart and Stroke Research Campaign, please visit http://www.heartandstroke re s e a rc h . o rg

Toilet trouble at Olympic village Siyed Asam and Syed Bukhari

customers with relatives in the Indian sub-continent. In all, dozens of customers sending cash to relatives India and Bangladesh were fleeced by the crooks. The pair pleaded guilty at Gloucester crown court to the scam. The judge said he would want to know how the two men were able to

set up a corner shop if they were overstayers and had no legal status in this country. The judge remanded Bukhari in custody and Asem on bail for pre-sentence reports. But he warned them both to expect prison sentences when they return to court on August 10.

After Commonwealth games its time for the Olympics 2012 as athletes to experience a different kind of trouble at the Games Village here, an Indian newspaper reported. Sharing of a toilet among four spokespersons, and sometimes even by six athletes, is causing strain and forcing some of them to alter their morning schedules so as to

manage essential routines. "It's amazing that competitors have to get used to these sort of things at the biggest event of the world. This may just be design issue for the flats, but the athletes are getting quite stressed," said an Indian official who is part of the delegation staying at the Games Village, Times of India reported. The official, speaking

on condition of anonymity, said tempers had not frayed until now, but if an athlete spends extra time in the toilet, he tends to get glared at by others sharing the apartment. Two others in the Indian contingent - a boxer and a shooter reportedly confirmed that the toilet time was the first thing athletes got to discuss after checking into the Games Village.



Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Pictures scream loud for attention Happy feet for Shiamak’s

Indrani Thakurata

As the city of London decks up like a new bride for the biggest sports extravaganza, far flung in India, in a place called Bhopal, victims of one of the worst industrial catastrophe are still reeling from their losses, struggling to make ends meet. But, what is the common thread between the two? Well, the common connection is Dow Chemicals, which took over the Union Carbide Corporation in 2001, the company chiefly responsible for the 1984 tragedy. In a sharp contrast to the glitterati in London where the key sponsor Dow Chemicals will fund the £7m wrap that will surround the stadium --- it is also stealthily trying to wash off its responsibility from the disaster where, 70% of the exposed population were earning subsistence wages and because of the disaster have lost the capacity to work and are living in abject poverty. To bring out the irony and protest against the association between the

London Olympics and the Dow Chemicals, Amnesty International UK and Samar Singh Jodha (an acclaimed Indian artist) have come together with a 40-foot multimedia installation called Bhopal – A Silent Picture. “These photographs have been

shot in the now sealed Union Carbide Plant in Bhopal. My pictures are doing the talk. Organising committees should consider the environmental, social, ethical and human rights record of the companies before letting them participate in an event like this. Through my work i have tried to bring out the fact that corporate irresponsibility can lead to severe price in terms of death, jobs. My installation will serve as a reminder,” says Jodha. The misery didn’t end with the disaster, Madhu Malhotra, Director,

Gender, Sexuality and Identity Programme, Amnesty International assures, “Even after 28 years of the tragedy, gas victims are suffering serious health problems. Till date, thousands of gas affected patients visit the Bhopal hospital. In many cases pregnant women who were exposed to the gas during that time have given birth to children with delayed gross motor and language sector development.” She adds, “During my research, I have found many women who are still under a trauma. And it seems that their health has another threat in terms of the chemical waste lying around in the premises of the plant which is contaminating the ground water, vegetables and the soil with toxins. It is a nightmare that refuses to leave them for generations.” What more, neither company has addressed the ongoing issues of water and soil contamination in Bhopal that continues to kill thousands and afflict even more with chronic illnesses.

'Triveni Sangam' Silver Jubilee held with pomp and gaiety

Amita Thakker, Harsha Shah, Anita Mehta, Anju Mehta, Bharti Buston, Anu Shah, Sunita Shah, Rekha Patel, Krusha Mehta

Jain Mahila Mandal Manchester were proud to host the Silver Jubilee of Triveni Sangam on 30th June 2012. Triveni Sangam first started in Manchester in 1987 with 125 women taking part; presently over 400 women attend. The focus is to have a women’s day by bringing together Navnat women of all ages from different parts of the UK to have an interactive, fun and informative day. It was called Triveni Sangam as initially, three areas, London, Leicester, and Manchester took part with Birmingham joining some years later. Since 1987, Triveni Sangam has become an important part of the calendar - an event that all members look forward to. It is held biannually with each Samaj hosting the

event, deciding on the theme of the day, and inviting each Samaj to contribute. Breakfast, lunch and dinner was catered for everyone attending. The 2012 theme was ‘Progress of Indian Women in the UK in the last 25 years’. Coaches from North, South and East London, Leicester and Birmingham arrived in Manchester from 9.00am onwards. All were given a warm welcome with a balloon release ceremony in the hope that the balloons will travel far and wide carrying our good wishes. The day’s program went well and was extremely entertaining with each samaj presenting their item based on their own interpretation of the progress of Indian women in the UK,

in dance, fashion, drama, and comedy format. There were happy memories of Africa and India with laughter throughout the day lifting everyone’s spirits. The Diamond Jubilee and The Olympics themes were included in the form of various games. Manchester were also proud to have introduced two inspirational women, Dr Minaxiben Desai CBE and Angelee Shah who were honoured to carry The Olympic Torch. The program ended with the hope and wish that the new generation of women will continue with the legacy of Triveni Sangam taking it forward to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Triveni Sangam in the year 2037. The next Triveni Sangam is to be held in South London in 2014.

students in London Indrani Thakurata Bollywood makes everybody sing and dance to its tune. And who can do it better than Shiamak Davar, India’s most celebrated choreographer who redefined bollywood dancing for us. He took the audience in London through a dancing extravaganza with his summer funk show. There were no celebrities on stage, and the performers were usually a motley crew of children as young as four years old and older dancers well into their 60s from Harrow, Wembley, Southall, Ilford and Central London to reiterate Shiamak’s motto of “Have feet, Will Dance”.

Shiamak. Along with the dancing guru, popular reality show judge from Dance India Dance, Marzi Pestonji kept the audience enthralled. Apart from entertaining, few performances evoked emotions and raised awareness. “ My students wanted to do something about female foeticide, killing of the girl child. I feel very strongly about the issue, so had it staged,” explains Shiamak. There was a special performance by students of Shiamak’s not for profit organization Victory Arts Foundation displaying their dance-ability too. The concluding thunder was a performance from the troupe’s front run-

With performances in Shiamak’s Indo jazz, ShaBop (Hip Hop & Street Funk) and Bollywood Jazz, the evening promised a houseful of entertainment, and it delivered more than it promised. The downpour of performances were well received by a packed audience. The audience were deported to the 1950s, 1960s, 1970s , 1980s, with pyar hua ikrar hua, jai jai shiv shankar, chandni, om shanti om, chumma chumma de de, mehendi laga ke rakhna, papa kehete hai and more. The colourful props, gorgeous dresses and splendid choreographing recreated the magic on stage. Shaimak was compering the show, encouraging the kids to perform their best. “With this Summer Funk, my dance school completes one successful year in London. The response has been over whelming, and it makes me proud to know that the Indian culture has been accepted so generously here. I never expected this response,” says

ners, Puneet and Aneesha, that blew everybody off their mind. When talking about their prowess, Shiamak assured each student to have a similar graph. His master class in the Harrow Arts Centre too saw a huge turn out. It was an event that his students didn’t want to miss. “My students have always been my pillars of strength. I’ve always personally trained all my instructors and this is where they started off from, as my students. I go an opportunity to share the knowledge and encourage their talent and interest in the performing arts,” says Shiamak. When questioned about the difference between the students back in India and London, he retorts, “The energy and enthusiasm amongst students here is great! Life really has come full circle, as I started my dance career in London.” But he is quick to add, “ Back home, I am a ghar ki murgi, the longing is much more here.”

Anoopam Mission to build new Swaminarayan temple in Denham Anoopam Mission is organizing a grand ceremony to lay the foundation stone for a new Swaminarayan temple in Brahmajyoti Ashram at Denham on August 18. A grand puja as prescribed by the Vedas, will be performed on the occasion. Hundreds of devotees from all over the world are expected to participate in this Puja. After the puja, ‘Shree Akshar Purushottam Katha Mangal’ will be organised on 19th and 20th August. While this discourse is said to be a unique initiative in Swaminarayan sect, it is being organised in the UK for the first time. This discourse, inspired and blessed by Guruvarya Sahebji will be presented by Dr Manoj Soni, who is currently serving as the Vice-Chancellor of Dr

Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University in Gujarat, India. A Bhoomi-pujan ceremony was organised a few weeks ago on 17th May, on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Gurudev Shri Yogiji Maharaj. In 1989, Anoopam Mission acquired a piece of land in Denham and built an Ashram called ‘Brahmajyoti’ where a Swaminarayan temple was built. During the last three decades, the community services and spiritual activities of this temple have transformed the lives of thousands of life who are now practicing Indian values even as they live and work in a highly materialistic world. Such is the impact of temple wherein saints like Guruvarya Sahebji resides. Every activity,

service or celebration that Anoopam Mission organizes has a single objective of strengthening unity, brotherhood and harmony in personal and social life, while serving humanity and cosmos with the consciousness of serving God himself! Although such an objective may appear to be formidable, Guruvarya Sahebji’s grace and blessings have made it feasible and practicable. Today, there are hundreds of families across the world that practices such a divine vision in their lives. Those who are interested to participate in this puja may contact Shri Himmat Swami on 079 40 937 375 or 01895 832709 at Anoopam Mission, Denham. For further information, please log on to


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Leading Lights

by Rani Singh

Special Assignments Editor

Lakshmi Kuhendran and Deepika Kathrani Lakshmi Kuhendran is in her fifth year studying medicine at Imperial College. Her childhood desire to serve as a doctor is matched by her passion for dancing, and she has been learning Bharatanatyam at the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan for 16 years. She completed her Post Diploma and Arangetram (on stage performance) at 15. Deepika Kathrani took a degree in mathematics at university, and graduated in 2007. She currently works for American Express as a statistician. She has completed a post diploma in Kathak and regularly performs for the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan’s shows and her Guruji’s dance company. Classes are twice weekly at the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan – an excellent, unparalleled institution which has kept alive our culture and is our second home. Deepika; My teacher is Shri Abhay Shankar Mishra, a highly reputed exponent of Kathak dance in the UK and abroad. He is an amazing Lakshmi Kuhendran performer, choreograDeepika Kathrani pher and teacher. We Q Where are your parDeepika; Our teacher have group classes twice ents from? uses the finest tailors in a week and many of us Lakshmi; My parents Delhi, who specialize in take additional one to are from Sri Lanka. making Kathak cosone tuition from our Although I was born in tumes. They take approxGuruji to learn even the UK, they have imately two weeks to more of the intricacies of brought me up to make, depending on the this dance form. embrace my culture and detail requested. Q Tell me about your traditions. Q You are both special events. Deepika; My parents studying two demanding Lakshmi; I presented are from East Africa, of disciplines. Which will a solo performance durGujarati origin. I was you focus on full time? ing this year’s Summer born and brought up in Lakshmi; I may have School Bharatanatyam the UK. Learning about to focus more on teacher’s concert on my Indian heritage was a Medicine in the future, Sunday 22nd July. It is a keen interest since childhowever I am currently privilege to learn under hood. It is important to fortunate in pursuing such esteemed artistes. I me to preserve and promedicine and have choreographed and mote Indian classical art. B h a r a t a n a t y a m. performed in various Q What made you Although they are occacities across the UK and take up your chosen sionally demanding, I am overseas, including for dance style? determined to continue Lakshmi; What began and develop my passion I learn at the as a child’s desire to imifor both. Bharatiya Vidya tate my mother has Deepika; I enjoy Bhavan –an excellent, become an important working with numbers unparalleled institution but it is not my passion. aspect of my life. Bharatanatyam is special My passion is Kathak to me; surrendering which is my escape from their Royal Highnesses, yourself to the melody everything. It breaks up Prince Charles and and rhythm and expressmy methodological Camilla, the Duchess of ing yourself in such a process of thinking. Cornwall, and at Her unique way is an emoDancing in the evening Majesty Queen tion words cannot justify. releases stress and a difElizabeth’s Golden Deepika; Kathak ferent sort of concentraJubilee. The Government dance appeals to me tion is required as it is of Karnataka personally because of the intricate completely creative. It invited my Guruji to the footwork, fast spins and balances well with the Indian Independence expressional aspect. It is rest of my day on a menDay 2011 celebrations a mesmerising dance tal and physical level, so and it was an honour to form. Learning at the I manage to focus well on perform with him. Bhavan from a world both, but of course if I Deepika; We are forrenowned Guru is a huge had to choose one, I tunate as Bhavan stublessing for students in would choose dance. dents to be able to perthe UK. Q Do you practice at form at many grand I only started learnhome? events. Recently we pering five years ago and Lakshmi; Practice is formed at the Queen performed my Kathak essential: it helps absorb Elizabeth Hall, the Rang Manch the intricacies within Southbank Centre and Pravesh in June 2012; each dance movement are performing at the this shows the level of and explore the abhinaya Royal festival Hall in intense teaching we (expression) of items. August 2012. We have receive here. Deepika; I practice regular performances for Q Who is your my theory, dance notathe Mayor of London, teacher? tion and speaking my Indian High Commission Lakshmi; I am compositions at home. I and many celebrities blessed to be learning get to practice regularly from the Indian film under my Guru Sri at the Bhavan with group industry. Prakash Yadagudde; an classes, one to one classQ Where do your outstanding performer, es and rehearsing for costumes come from, teacher, and choreograshows. However much and how long do they pher. My achievements practice you manage to take to get made? are attributed to his do is absolutely essential. Lakshmi; Costumes expert guidance. Dance You should not rely only and jewellery are from cannot exist without on class practice. India. I enjoy selecting music, and my Karnatic Investing in your own material for the cosVocal Guru is Smt. practice time is what tumes; tailoring usually Sivasakthi Sivanesan. makes all the difference. takes about a week.


Indian Student gets gold at Cranfield MBA Regatta Tej Shah An Student from India, Anuja Shah, currently studying an MBA degree at Leeds University, took part in an annual sailing competition which was run by Cranfield University. This year the event took place from Friday 6th JulySunday 8th July at Port Solvent. Anuja herself said that she had never sailed before and called the Regatta a life changing experience. Anuja, India, was part of a multi-cultural sailing team from Leeds University that ending up winning the race. The winning team (pictured) consisted of Anuja Shah (India),Yi Hua Chen (Taiwan), Murad Dabllah (Jordan), Mohamad Al Malki (Qatar) and Hinrich Voss (Germany). The Cranfield MBA Regatta, an event which is organised by the MBA students in Cranfield, is said to be one of the oldest events of its kind in Europe. The event brings students all around the

globe for one eager and competitive sporting occasions. The event lasts for two days and offers hospitality as well as entertainment over the weekend period. As well as that it gives a brilliant network

she learn to explore life a bit more and that there is more to life than just making money. She called out to all Indian students in the UK and said “we can make a huge difference and earn a

opportunity by letting their students meet with peer business students and put into practice some of their business and organisation skills. When talking to Anuja about opportunities in the UK she said “I think universities in UK provide a great platform for the Asian students to learn, grow and bring the best qualities in them forward.” She also feels that

respectable position for our own respective nations, by securing such postions”. Leeds University came in first position and were led by skipper SS Pete Walters and the hosts first team came in a disappointing second and were led by SS James Gair. Other UK universities that participated were Warwick, Bath, Exeter and LBS.

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Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Some ‘forgotten’ facts in Theresa May’s ‘history lesson’

ABPL on-line

British Home Secretary Mrs Theresa May has introduced a new handbook on the history of UK which the new immigrants should know before they settle down in the country. But the handbook gives only the ‘glossy’ events, but the author of this article wants the new immigrants to know the ‘true’ history of the country which Mrs Theresa May has ‘forgotten’ to add. The author has written a letter to Mrs Theresa May and Prime Minister David Cameron mentioning some of the facts which the Home Secretary should include in her ‘history lesson.’

Last week, I was away from the relentless and incessant rain of London, soaking in the hot sun of Cyprus. In these days of the impending Olympic Games, I wanted to see the place from where the Games are supposed to have been originated. Whatever their actual origin, the ancient Olympic games were called Olympic after Mount Olympus, the mountain on which the Greek gods were said to live. Olympus at 1,952 metres (6,404ft), is the highest point in Cyprus and is located in the Troodos Mountains of Cyprus. I am glad to say that while I was away, I did not miss my favourite AV and GS. I logged into the ABPL website and read the “Your Voice” column of AV on page 8 and my contribution “Yet another Inquiry” regarding the recent problems in our banking system on- line from a computer outlet in my hotel. I was also glad that I was able to get up to speed on what is happening in England and around the world by reading the two papers on the ABPL website. It was a great relief and reassurance that the eedition of the papers provided me with the facility to read and contribute to my favourite “Your voice” column even from abroad. I wonder whether similar facility is available to readers of other papers. I also wonder however that if people could read the papers on-line like this then there is no incentive to subscribe to them or to purchase them at the news agents. So what benefit ABPL gets by making them available as e-papers on-line? Dinesh Sheth Newbury Park, Ilford

Let’s start with ‘Slavery’ how your ancestors treated another human being just because they happened to be black. Detailed how many small girls were raped in the fields they worked from down till desk. Do touch how they were whipped for disobediences. Let’s not mention how many in thousands were even murdered. That would be good start of your ‘colonial era’. Then slowly come down to your ‘imperial era’ where you don’t have to go very far, let’s forget what British did in China and take India only, that would be a good start. Write in that handbook how the Indians were mistreated in their own homeland. Write how their treatment was worse than the treatment of an animal. Don’t forget to mention as to how many times your government threw that ‘Naked Fakir’ into jailed who never killed a fly. I am not going to name other Congress freedom fighters! Write about, how once as ‘golden bird of East’ (sohani ki Cheera) was robbed of its wealth that even the golden doors of certain mandirs (temples) were ripped off and brought and put in the museum here. Don’t forget to mention about the organized ‘Amritsar massacre’ where innocent worshipers, who went to the Golden Temple along with their families and children to celebrate ‘Sikh New Year day (baisakhi 13.04.1919), 1650 were butchered. Your own newspaper, ‘The Westminister Gazette’ here in London summed the holocaust as ‘no British action, during the whole course of our history in India., has struck a severe blow to Indian faith in British justice than the massacre at Amritsar, and the attitude of the official AngeloIndia to it’ This massacre was not undertaken by an ordinary English man, that would have understandable and even acceptable but it was done by an officer of His Majesty’s army, General Dyer, who I understand was promoted to the rank of brigadier-general when he came back to England after this heroic deed. That is just a glimpse of your British history. Wants some more! Also please do pen in about the ‘divide and rule’ policy that split the country in two, creating one monstrous haven of terrorism which now you are unable to control. Not surprisingly this could be reaction of your own action of 1947, in, modern terms this could be ‘what goes up comes down’ and time is not far when the axe will fall; Scotland is just around the corner decrying for independence. Of course ‘UK is a Christian nation’ –the world knows that and it is your own people who have forgotten that, and it is your churches that disfigured Christianity and that’s why other faiths are taking advantages of the situation

prevailing. Christianity is a beautiful, gentle and loving faith, it has a tough of Eastern Aroma in it, but unfortunately it is your own church authorities that have devalued it. As Karl Marx would express it, “the institution has carried with it the seeds of her own destruction.” A teacher of Christianity, Peter Phipps who has authored a book: ‘Greater Than you Know’ has written “the Church is the author of her own current misfortune as a majority of the western population can no longer subscribe wholeheartedly to her teaching, no matter how much they may accepting teachings of Jesus Christ. When the messenger has been discredited, the message also suffers.” The Church is not true representative of Lord Jesus Christ’s teachings; she has replaced lot of His teachings with Paul’s preaching. It’s Paul’s Christianity. What were the eight Crusades, nothing more than military adventures primarily for killing Jews, Islam and Judaism? 6- There is nothing wrong with Christianity; it is the way church represented her to the world, which stinks. Bishop Desmond Tutu has beautifully summed it up; “When the missionaries came to Africa they had the Bible and we had the land. They said, ‘Let’s pray.’ We closed our eye. When we opened them we have the Bible and they had the land.” Lastly, don’t forget to mention Iraq and Afghanistan, these are two on going British history, which will not end, these are endless. These two countries will never see democracy and will not have peace for the next fifty years. Why? Because like Pakistan there is the minority ruling the majority. Just a thought, go to one school, any where in England and ask non-immigrant children there about the history of UK and about the Christianity. See what you get! ‘Charity begins at home’ is not our government’s policy. Is it? The government knows to preach but not to practice! The author has also sent a copy of this letter to the Prime Minister with some added information, “Just to let you know that it is the government that is bringing down the Christianity and the churches. They say that if you want others to respect your faith you must accept and respect your faith and then only others will follow suit. Charity must begin at home; you have to accept and respect them first. You are the Prime Minister, who should be responsible for any disrespect shown towards these two; one faiths and the second an institution for upholding Christianity faith. Prime Minister, the ball is in your court.” Noni Sahota Northolt

Indo- Pak cricket ties Myopic and insensitive act of BCCI to invite Pakistan cricket team to India is astounding. The invitation is a humiliating slap to martyrs of dastardly 26-11 attack. This shows lack of Indo centric patriotism by BCCI. Repeat of misdirected action and expecting different and favourable result is beyond any rationale. India’s attempts to woo Pakistan since 1980 have failed. It is shame and pity that India’s Home office has not cracked down on BCCI for not seeking clearance for extending such treacherous anti national invitation. I sincerely hope that Indian government would invalidate invitation and punish BCCI. Are following any signs of harmony by Pakistan? Proven terrorist training camps on Pakistan territory, and repeated terrorists attacks. Invasion of Kashmir and and creation of so called Azad Kashmir, disregard to Simla treaty, back stabbing via Kargill war, blatant persecution of Hindus in Pakistan etc are not secret. Yet BBCI expects cricket to appeal to good self of Pakistan that teaches India centric hatred in its schools. Muslims pursue their case relentlessly as in case of Babri Masjid-since 1992 and Modi episode since 2002. Why Indians cannot apply similar tenacious, aggressive assertive stance by simple act of discarding Pakistan cricket team? Or does BCCI consider Indian / Hindus fodder on altar of money? Ramesh Jhalla Via Email

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Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman ensure victory for India in first test

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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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Last week, when I visited the Westfield Shopping Center at Stratford, I was attracted to see the Olympics Park. I approached one of the many entrances to have a glimpse of it and as expected I was not allowed to get beyond certain limit. There were numerous people just like me who wanted to have a glimpse of the Olympics Village and snap some photos. After taking some snaps, I decided to try the Olympics Viewing Gallery at John Lewis which was suggested by a family friend. I was speechless. Quite amazing view it was! Well done and thanks to John Lewis for giving people this great opportunity. They have made a viewing gallery on the 3rd floor which includes some binoculars provided free to the visitors. You get such a beautiful view of the Olympics Village; a great opportunity to take quality photos. I would recommend that to the AV readers; one should visit if you haven’t been there. Once again a big thank you and well done to John Lewis for coming up with such a wonderful idea. Devang Bhatt Harrow, London

Milk Maids of Gujarat It is an open secret that under Narendra Modi, the dynamic, astute and honest to a fault CM of Gujarat who has provided corruption free administration, Gujarat is not only economically booming with mouth watering double digital growth but Gujarat is also peaceful, law abiding and harmonious State in the Indian Union. Modi’s burning desire, zumbesh is to raise the profile of women, as he shares the same ambition, ideals with Gandhiji to liberate women, poor and economically backward class and assimilate them in the economic boom that is taking Gujarat to a new height. Modi’s main target is the assiduous women, as he echoes the sentiments, wisdom and philosophy of Gandhiji, a staunch Gujarati and father of the modern India. No wonder the ladies of Gujarat, especially from the ethnic minorities, such as Daudi Bhora, Shia Ismailis, Ahmedia and Kokni Muslims, along with Gujarati Christians, Jains Sikhs and Buddhists have blossomed with 100% education among their girls! As widely reported in Indian national media, Ramilaben Patel who had never been to a college, started the business twelve years ago, with just five cross-bred cows bought with a bank loan. Today her dairy business, aptly named Jai Ranchod Milk Production Centre has 280 cows on a fifty acre farm with forty workers, in addition to automatic milking machines. She is not alone. There are some one thousand such small enterprises established during the last twenty years that has brought white revolution to Gujarat, the milk as well as the diamond capital of the world. Let us hope that Modi will triumph again in the forthcoming assembly elections and take Gujarat to a new height. Bhupendra M Gandhi Via 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

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The John Lewis Viewing Gallery



Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Harrow mothers unite against gang crime Reenu Punoose One of the most powerful instincts in Nature is a mother’s drive to protect her children. Over a hundred people, a large majority of whom were anxious but determined mothers, gathered at Harrow School on 16th July, 2012, for a conference entitled ‘Pre-empt- take action before it’s too late’ to mark the official launch of the newly formed Mothers against Gangs (MAG) initiative that aims to keep young people safe in Harrow. Mothers against Gangs is a self-help group that was set up following meetings between concerned mothers and local police to provide support and advice to parents and carers regarding how to tackle the pressures that young people and their families face from gang culture. This is a first venture of its kind in Harrow supported by various agencies such as the Harrow Council, Harrow Police, Children’s Services and other voluntary organisations. MAG is funded by the Prisoner Property Act Fund via the Harrow Association of Somali Voluntary Organisations (HASVO). Speakers at the event included Councillor Abdul Hai, Councillor Nasim Ali, Bob Foster (Triple P), DCI John Crossley (Trident Gang Crime Command), Roy Risby (gang intervention worker), three former gang members and Carlene Firmin (Principle Policy Advisor, Office of the Children’s Commissioner for England). At the outset, Chief Superintendent Dal Babu, Borough Commander for Harrow, made it clear that Harrow is one of the safest neighbourhoods in London. “Harrow has a 20% reduction in burglary, 11% reduction in robbery and a 30% reduction in violence. Knife crime is down 22% so Harrow is a very very safe place to live.” Nevertheless he warned against complacency and being in denial. “The message we are saying is that let us not be complacent. Let us make sure that if we have any indications of or we have concerns about our young people, then we work with the agencies, the police, the schools, the youth

workers and be honest.” One of the highlights of the event was the talks by three former gang members, all of whom have served long sentences in prison and are now youth workers within voluntary organisations. By sharing their own stories, they identified several reasons why young people may be drawn to involvement in criminal gangs including the lack of positive role models, the desire to be accepted by others, unstable family backgrounds and the temptation to make quick money in the face of financial insecurities at home and poor performance in schools. Cllr Abdul Hai and Cllr Nasim Ali shared their experience of working on the Camden Gangs Project and how they successfully used sports, particularly football, as a tool to integrate two rival gangs in Camden. They added that youngsters at risk need to have a positive role model to talk to and warn them about the long term consequences of gang affiliations. They also emphasised the importance of effective communication between parents and children. “If you, as parents, don’t talk to your kids, someone else will and they may be talking to them [children] about something else,” warned Cllr Nasim Ali. Cultivating a strong parent-child relationship is imperative to safeguarding young people from gang culture. Bob Foster, Strategic Consultant at Triple P, an organisation that provides ‘Positive Parenting Programs’ to support parents and families across the world, suggested that parental focus should be on giving children a belief in themselves, reminding them that they can choose to have a different future away from violence and crime, providing the courage and support needed to stand up to the vari-

ous pressures they face every day and helping them to manage and create good friendships. Borough Commander for Harrow, Dal Babu, also had some valuable advice for parents, “the key thing is to understand what your children are doing. Always know where they are; always know who their friends are …is your child on Facebook? Check! …It is about making sure your children know you will be looking.” He also said that a session would be organised soon for mothers to help them learn how to use the internet and social networking sites like Facebook in order to safeguard their children online. Even though there was a large turnout at the conference to support the MAG initiative, the Asian community was poorly represented. Given that Asians form one of the largest ethnic minority groups living in Harrow, their involvement is indispensable to the success of initiatives like MAG. It is sincerely hoped that similar events in the future will see a greater Asian participation. The event concluded with the commitment from members of the community, Harrow Police and other participating agencies to work closely with each other to identify youngsters at risk and help parents keep their children safe from the pressures of gang culture. Mothers in the audience described the conference as a productive experience .Armed with the support of local authorities and the knowledge gained from the experiences of exoffenders, these brave mothers have further strengthened their resolve to fight against gang crime. For more information and details of future events, please visit their official website w w w. m o t h e r s a g a i n s t


Foreign students key to UK business An open letter has been sent to the PM David Cameron recently stressing the need to loosen the increasingly hardening immigration rules allowing students from outside the EU to enter. Among those whom have signed the letter are Indian origin Lord Karan Bilimoria founder of Cobra beer as he states that it is choking off a valuable source of wealth and skills, he himself came to this country as a British student, also Sir Martin Sorrell, WPP head and

chairman or chief executive of Centrica, Unilever, KPMG and Stephen Carter of Ashridge Business School, Stewards of Institute of Directors and the British Chambers of Commerce, too, have lent their signatures. Oversees students are vital in the running of Universities as the fee income has helped to keep the books balanced, this has shown to have been a lifeline in the running of these Universities under these tough economic conditions. Britain's top

Universities attract the best brains from around the world and it would be crucial to not to lose them as they offer a world of new ideas and talents to British businesses. Cameron is set to water down some of the measures which include scrapping of post-study visa. The government send a clear message that genuine international students are welcome to study in the UK. A full list of people who have signed the letter as per The Sunday Times are as follows:

Sam Laidlaw, CEO, Centrica plc Lord Digby Jones, chairman, University of Birmingham business school advisory board Simon Walker, Director General, Institute of Directors Lord Bilimoria CBE, DL, Chairman, Cobra Beer Partnership Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO, WPP Mr Phil Smith, Chief Executive, Cisco UK and Ireland John Longworth, Director General, British Chambers of Commerce John Griffith-Jones, UK Chairman and Senior Partner, KPMG LLP Philip Dilley, Chairman, Arup Sir Peter Bonfield, Chair of Council, Loughborough University Professor Geneviève Berger, Chief Research & Development Officer, Unilever plc David Docherty, Chief Executive, The Council For Industry and Higher Education Stephen Carter CBE, Managing Director, Alcatel-Lucent/Chairman, Ashridge Business School Glenn Earle, Chair of the Advisory Board, University of Cambridge Judge Business School Alberto de Benedictis, Chief Executive, Finmeccanica UK Peter Vernon, Chief Executive - Britain & Ireland, Grosvenor Professor Simon Bradley, Vice President, Head of Global Innovation Network, Systems & Product Architecture & Engineering at EADS Lord Tim Clement-Jones, London Managing Partner, DLA Piper UK LLP William Macpherson, Chief Executive, QA Geoff Mulgan, CEO, NESTA David Sanger, Chair of Advisory Board, University of Roehampton Business School Alan Hughes, Chair, Leeds University Business School International Advisory Board Mark Reynolds, Deputy Chief Executive, Mace Des Gunewardena, Chairman & CEO, D & D London Ian Horrox, Human Resources Director, D & D London Paul Marshall, Chief Executive, Association of Business Schools Audrey Elliott, Head of Immigration Team, Eversheds David Tonkin, Regional Managing Director UK, Atkins Ranulf Scarbrough, Chair of the Plymouth Business School Advisory Committee Professor Neville Reyner CBE DL Hon DLitt, Chairman, Exemplas Holdings ltd Mr William Archer, CEO, i-Graduate Ian Gordon, Chair, Aston Business School Advisory Board Lizz Clarke, Chair, Portsmouth Business School Advisory Board Ian R Stopps CBE, Chair of the School of Business and Economics Advisory Board, Loughborough University Doug Ross, Chair, Kingston Business School Advisory Board Robert Booker, Executive Vice President, Human Resources, BG Group plc Baron Tanlaw of Tanlawhill, Chancellor, The University of Buckingham

Science graduates 'lack skills needed by business' Universities are not producing enough science graduates with the skills needed by UK industry, a report says. The Lords Science and Technology Committee calls for immediate action to boost student numbers in science, technology, engineering and maths at undergraduate and postgraduate level. Too many students start science courses with weak maths skills, it says. Report chairman Lord

Willis said he was "gobsmacked" by figures which showed few who had studied maths beyond GCSE. The report notes that the government's Plan for Growth attached great importance to education and the hi-tech industry to create jobs and prosperity. But it highlights a lack of key skills which extends from too few young people studying maths beyond GCSE to too few students taking postgraduate degrees in

science, technology, engineering and maths (Stem) subjects. The sub-committee that produced the report said they were shocked that so many Stem undergraduates did not have Alevel mathematics. The figures showed that around 70% of biology undergraduates, 38% of chemistry and economics undergraduates and 10% of engineering students did not have A-level maths.



Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Scrutator’s India’s cricket icon Sunil Gavaskar spoke for the nation when he questioned the decision of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to host a Pakistan tour in December for a series of one-day internationals. With his roots in Mumbai, where he was born and bred and learned the game he subsequently adorned, Mr Gavaskar said: “Being a Mumbaikar,” he failed to understand the “urgency” for such a tour, “when there has been no co-operation from the other side” in bringing the perpetrators of 26/11 to justice. Instead, Pakistan keeps issuing brazen denials of its culpability, which no member of the international community, with the possible exception of China, accepts. The citizens of India should make known their anger and disgust by boycotting this circus. They must bring pressure to bear on the government that rules in their name and dishonours it. Here’s an opportunity for India’s Opposition parties to make their voices heard. This, surely, is a cause worthy of Anna Hazare’s attention. Can Indian cricket board president Srinivasan one think of any serious country being subjected to repeated terrorist attack playing games of cricket with the country that harbours them and abets their nefarious activities? (The Times of India, The Telegraph, Hindu July 17).

Lacking sense Fools and knaves across the subcontinent were on song at the news. One can appreciate the enthusiasm of Pakistan’s great and good, from Imran Khan and Javed Miandad to Zaheer Abbas and Asif Ali Zardari and their compeers: there is, after all, money to be made and a jehad to be won, contests of every sort between the faithful and unbelieving kaffirs being continuations of scriptural holy war. The Times of India’s editorial entitled (July 18), “Game That Binds: Resumption of India-Pakistan cricketing ties a fillip for peace process,” is a sample of the idiocy currently abroad. If the paper’s words were remotely true, relations between India and Pakistan would be sweetness and light by now, seeing that so much cricket has come and gone down the years. We were treated to similar bromides in 2003, four years after the Kargil War; the prize, five years later, was the Pakistan-mounted assault on Mumbai. Whence comes the next jehadi outrage on Indian soil?

Reality, not fantasy The commandant of Indian army forces in the Kashmir has issued a warning of jehadis from Pakistan waiting to seize their moment to enter the valley. The numbers of suicide attacks on Indian personnel had were on the rise, he claimed. At the other end of India, the anti-terrorist Special Task Force of the West Bengal police arrested Harun Rashid in Kolkata. He is believed to be a key operative of the outlawed Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI), which promotes terrorist-related conspiracies and bombings in the country. Police claim that Rashid is a close associate Abu Faisal Khan,

who was recently snared by the Madhya Pradesh Police AntiTerrorist squad. He was wanted by the Mumbai Police for sabotage. Rashid and Khan were planning to activate SIMI and Indian Mujahideen (IM) sleeper cells in West Bengal. Another significant development was the arrest of Faisal Shaikh, who is believed to be the mastermind behind the July 2006 suburban train bombings in Mumbai which claimed 188 lives. Shaikh revealed that he had sent seven IM operatives to Pakistan for training (The Times of India July 18). Burying one’s head in the sand is no help.

Firm response to Obama Mentoring by the West has long been a way of life. Telling the darkies to do the right things, even as the Herrenvolk themselves are in distress as a result of self-inflicted wounds, is integral to the black humour of our age. The Eurozon is redolent of the 1930s and the spirit of Munich, as it lurches from crisis to crisis, despair and cynicism writ large across much of a defrauded continent. Meanwhile, the US is sliding into a mild recession and its unemployment numbers remain stubbornly high. With the silly season almost upon us, President Obama told an election rally in the United States of complaints from American businessmen that investing in India was near to climbing a mountain. This did not go down well in India, where Government and Opposition, in a rare show of unity, issued a firm rebuttal. Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma asked the US to take the lead, as the world’s biggest economy, in reducing protectionist barriers in trade to the benefit of all nations.

Perception and reality Mr Sharma continued: “There is always a difference between perception and reality. India remains one of the most attractive destinations for foreign investors. The recent United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) report has stated that India is among the top three FDI [Foreign Direct Investment] destinations; the Japanese Bank for International Cooperation’s recent report placed India number two…..” Mr Sharma cited supporting evidence from Kearney Consultant and similar global bodies. He reaffirmed India’s desire to move in the right direction of the reform process: “a series of steps had been taken through a calibrated approach,” he said (The Hindu July 17). Saddling India with expensive junk products, as the fallen US energy Enron sought to do a decade ago, will not pass.

Ford on track Ford India is an example of a successful US company on the move. It has cleared the roadblock for larger market share by increasing its engine capacity, which had previous hobbled

Gutted: An armed mob destroyed several offices at Maruti Suzuki's plant in Manesar

will extend a $3.4 billion credit line for the project. The protocol also includes provisions for export credits amounting to $800 million at 4 per cent interest, for the financing of 85 per cent of the nuclear fuel and control assemblies (The Hindu July 18).

Educational tablet PC Eying India’s fast-growing elearning educational sector, Mumbai-based Alphabetics Computer Services launched its first tablet PC, TabletGuru. Available in 7-inch and 10-inch screens, it uses the Android 4.03

dalized and set on fire. When the police took control the site resembled a war-zone of burnt out cars, furniture and office equipment. It may be too early to apportion blame as the full facts are still to emerge, but whatever they turn out to be, the violence was a manifestation of barbarism. There can be no justification for this, accepting that labour-management relations at the plant had deteriorated, with tension running high. Maruti’s market share in cars and vans is the highest in India, and the Japanese-owned company has suffered a major blow to its reputation, profitability and share price. The savagery on display has left scars that will be difficult to heal in the short and medium-term. Fumes of shame and disgrace will linger. There has to be introspection from both sides of the divide on what went wrong and why. This is vital if the right lessons are to be learned from the tragedy.

Presidential election

Ford plant in Chennai, Kumar Galhotra with Managing Director Michael Boneham

growth. Customers were forced to wait 90 days for delivery of their orders. With the extra engine capacity going on stream, the waiting period will now be significantly reduced. So confident is Ford of market expansion that it recently launched its topend “Titanium” variant of the Classic sedan in both diesel and petrol modes and plans to follow this with the launch of “Ecosport”, the sports utility vehicle (SUV). Addressing a press conference near Chennai, Michael Boneham, Managing Director, asserted that notwithstanding the slowdown in the Indian economy, India’s growth story was on track. He said Ford was in the country for the long haul and that the company had every confidence in its investment in India (The Hindu July 18).

Russian reactors With the Kundankulam nuclear power plant ready to go on stream in August, India and Russia have signed a contract for a further two 1,000MW Russiandesigned reactors at the same site. Under the agreement Russia

operating system and is priced at Rs 9,999 for Alpha Edu-1and Rs 14,999 for Alpha Edu-II across 5,000 touch points in a month. Addressing a press conference in Mumbai, Pankaj Kurulkar, Chairman and Managing Director, said: “The education sector in India, at $600 billion, is huge. Private education is growing at 19 per cent per annually, and is expected to reach $45 billion by 2015. While e-learning is undergoing consolidation, it is expected to grow 20 per cent annually.” There will be difficulties along the way, for sure, but such technology underwrites India’s future.

Pranab Mukherjee will be sworn in on July 25th so formally taking his place as India’s new President. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banejee’s Trinamool Congress Party threw in the towel at the end and voted for him. Instead of the anticipated fireworks, Ms Banerjee’s challenge turned out to be a damp squib. Hopefully she will emerge from the experience more mature and realistic about her role in national politics.

Maruti shocker The scale and intensity of the violence that struck the Maruti’s Manesar car plant in Haryana has stunned the whole of India. The General Manager in charge of Human Resources Awanash Kumar Deb was beaten so severely that he died of his injuries. Ninety-one members of the management were hospitalized and 80 workers have been arrested. The Maruti office was van-

Pranab Mukherjee as President

For Mr Mukherjee, it has been a long and rewarding journey from his humble roots in a rural backwater in Bengal to the glitter of Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi. He has the experience and the wisdom for his duties as head of state. We wish him every success.


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

India Connect Q & A: Visa to India How do I apply for Minor Child (Under 16 Years of age) A copy of the child’s birth certificate showing both the parents names. Consent letter addressed to the HCI or its respective consulates signed by both the parents. Photocopy of Parent’s passJiten Vyas, VFS Global ports along with the copy of their current Indian Visa, if already holding one. In case of Divorce, Child Custody Letter from court in respect of the child is required. In case of Single Parent, Solicitor’s Letter and Child Benefit letter will be required. Applicants can visit India without the ‘02 month entry’ restrictions with a valid Long term VISA. This is different from a Tourist VISA. What is long term VISA. A Long term entry visa is issued to people of Indian origin only and hence appropriate documentation is required to substantiate Indian origin e.g. Old Indian Passport copy or any document issued in the name of the applicant by the Government of India. The visa is valid for up to five years with multiple entries. Please note the validity of the visa is effective from the date of issue. What are the requirement for Long Term VISA ? Passport - valid for a minimum of 180 days with at least two blank pages. Correct visa fee. Two recent 50 x 50 mm size photographs. Please check the Photo Specifications. Correctly filled application form. Any of the below listed Documents for Proof of Indian Origin: Copy of Surrender Certificate of Indian Passport of the Applicant. Copy of the Applicant's Parent’s Indian Passport /Surrender Certificate of their Indian Passport along with the applicant's Birth Certificate. Copy of the Applicant’s Wife’s / Husband's Indian Passport or Surrender Certificate of his / her Indian Passport along with the applicant's Marriage Certificate. (If claiming Indian origin by virtue of spouse's (Wife / Husband) Indian origin). In absence of any of the above documents, an affidavit signed by the First Class Magistrate from India about Indian Nationality. I want to submit a PIO / OCI application, where do I do this? For all PIO or OCI applications or queries, you will be required to apply directly at the High Commission of India or its respective consulates in the UK. I have completed an online visa application but forgot to note down my web reference number, how do I retrieve this? If you require your web reference number to retrieve, modify or print your application, please email our information desk ( or call our helpdesk on 0905 757 0045)

For more information regarding any quires about Indian Visa please contact by email or post: Email: Customer Relations Department. India Visa Application Center, 60-62 Wilton Road, London SW1V 1DE

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Dental practice worker faces poison charges A woman has been accused of poisoning two of her colleagues at a dental practice. Ravinder Kaur, 33, will appear at Bedford magistrates court later this month charged with administering poison with intent to annoy, injure or aggrieve at a dental practice in Shefford, a national paper reported. The charges relate to two separate incidents in March, in which two female colleagues suffered stomach upsets, said to have been caused by dental mercury poisoning, Bedfordshire police reportedly said. A force spokeswoman confirmed that the accused, who is currently suspended from work, was not a dentist but worked at the practice. The woman will appear before magistrates on July 31


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Official Charity for AAA 2012

Making a change at India's Grassroots

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Mr Vijay Poddar

A village is like a living cell of a nation and India lives in its 670,000 vil-

infusion of money into larger developmental projects, what is really needed is a change in the mindsets, attitudes and a number of degenerative habits prevalent amongst the rural community. With such aims, SARVAM has embarked upon this integrated village development programme. Stories on various facets of the work were covered in our earlier articles. Financial assistance is needed for our plans in the following areas-

lages. For a truly happy and vibrant future, the need of the hour is to make our villages happy grounds for people to find and live out their dreams and aspirations. If approached in an integrated manner, life in villages can be a fine example of sustainable growth and harmonious development. Bringing about changes at the grass-root level in the villages requires not only a planned multi-pronged approach but also and unflinching commitment and a large heart. Besides

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BOOKWORM ‘Cardiff Five’ Miscarriage Book A ‘Wake-Up’ Call For British Justice - Roger Aitken The eagerly awaited follow-up to author and investigative journalist Satish Sekar’s 1998 book ‘FittedIn: The Cardiff 3 and the Lynette White Inquiry’, which examines what is considered as one of the major miscarriages of justice in British criminal history, has been published virtually nine years to the day (7 July) after South Wales Police began an investigation into a case that remains “unique” in the annals of British criminal history and injustice work. ‘The Cardiff Five: Innocent Beyond Any Doubt’, Sekar’s new 208-page book, forensically tells the tale of Cardiff-based prostitute Lynette White’s murder in the early hours of Valentine’s Day in 1988 and takes the story further up to 2011. The case represents a “major miscarriage” according to North London-based Sekar, who is of Indian parentage. Extensively researched in a twenty year quest for the truth, the book scrutinises this disturbing case from day one and it makes a call for a fully independent judicial inquiry. Sekar looks also at the Cardiff Five’s subsequent ‘vindication’, a term that he himself

coined. His original ‘Fitted-In’ title asked questions of the whole of the criminal justice system including the role of the police and the Crime Prosecution Service (CPS). Specifically, the latest work takes the reader from the sadistic killing of Lynette White in Butetown, Cardiff in 1988 to the end of 2011, when aspects of the case were referred to the Independent Police C o m p l a i n t s Commission (IPCC) and HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate (HMCPSI). This was in the aftermath of the acquittal of a number of police officers and civilians facing conspiracy to pervert the course of justice or perjury charges. Sekar says: “The Cardiff Five case is the first example in the UK of a homicide in which the original suspects were vindicated by the conviction of the true killer in the DNA age. By then, they had shared sixteen years in prison for a crime they did not commit.” He shows how a miscarriage of justice destroyed families, divided communities and undermined confidence in the British criminal justice system. “If one had run the events that

took place around this murder past the producers of The Bill or even studios in Hollywood, the script would have been rejected as no one would have believed that such an injustice was possible,” he adds. The author estimates that costs incurred from the time of the original investigation to rectifying various mistakes throughout and since could cost the British taxpayer between £50m-£100m. The final figure is yet to be known. Sekar asserts that the police gave assurances that they could be trusted to “put right what they had got wrong” in one of Britain’s most notorious miscarriages of justice. He argues: “Never before or since has the system attempted to hold itself responsible over such a case on such a grand scale, but ultimately it only proved that the criminal justice system is not and cannot be an independent arbiter of its own failings.” Thirty-four people were arrested on suspicion of perjury or conspiring to pervert the course of justice; twenty of whom were police officers. ‘The Cardiff Five: Innocent Beyond Any Doubt’ (ISSN: 9781904380764), with a foreword by Michael Mansfield QC and contributions from MP Alun Michael, can be pre-ordered through and is published by Waterside Press.


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Trisha says no to Sanjay Dutt film Director K S Ravikumar, who's all set to direct Sanjay Dutt in the remake of the Kollywood hit “Saamy,” wanted Trisha to reprise her role from the original. Trisha had to decline the offer owing to her busy schedule. Trisha, who debuted in 2010 in Bollywood with the lack lustre “Khatta Meetha,” has since not acted in another Hindi film. “Saamy,” which released in 2003, was one of Trisha's biggest hits and starred Chiyaan Vikram as her hero. When contacted, Trisha said, "Yes, I was approached for the film. But I am shooting three Tamil films back to back, which require me to travel extensively as well. I had to decline because I couldn't accommodate anything new for the same reason."

Working with Big B was a dream come true: Dileep

A recently concluded ad shoot featuring some of the superstars in the South film industry along with the Amitabh Bachchan was a dream come true for Mollywood actor Dileep. He recalls that his first effort to reach Big B was 17 years ago. "A few of us actors tried for a photoshoot with Amitabh sir back in 1995 but for some reason it got dropped at the last minute," recalls Dileep and adds that he is blessed to get an opportunity to work along with Big B alongside, albeit for an ad. "The past two days were like entering a university. His name is synonymous to Indian cinema and every moment you spent with him is a huge learning experience," says an excited Dileep.

Kajal Agarwal wants to become No 1

Kajal Agarwal is now struggling to become number one actress in Tamil film industry. In Tamil, she is pairing with Vijay in “Thuppakki” and with Surya in “Maatran.” She is also acting in one Hindi film and two Telugu films which have popular actors in the lead role. She is shuttling between Tamil Nadu, Hyderabad and Mumbai. Two more songs featuring Vijay and Kajal are to be shot for the film “Thuppakki.” Similarly one more song in “Maatran” featuring Surya and Kajal are remaining to be shot. Kajal had given dates earlier but the directors have not used it properly. Now they have requested fresh dates from her. Kajal has already allocated the dates requested by the directors for other films and because of this, the shooting of Thuppakki and Maatran are stalled.

Hot Garam masala Deepika is on Cloud Nine Deepika Padukone, who was always written about for her stunning looks, is making heads turn this time. Post ‘Cocktail’ people can't stop talking about her super act in the film. Everyone seems besotted by her performance: Hard-nosed critics, reputed film-makers, the opinion-makers who hold weight in film circles and most importantly, the cine-going audience, who pronounce the real verdict when a film opened on last week. "I am flooded with phone calls and sms-es ever since ‘Cocktail’ released. I am feeling elated," Deepika can't hide her excitement. She's ecstatic! This film has brought about a major turnaround in her career. Most importantly, it has made people sit and notice her talent. "This [the immense praise coming her way] is something I always craved for, but, perhaps, I didn't invest so much hard work in my earlier films.

Kushboo is Amitabh's heroine!

Kushboo does not take up too many films these days as she is busy with her small screen projects, political career and her family. But when Revathy Varma offered her a role with Amitabh Bachchan for a Bollywood film called “Mad Dad” Kushboo was delighted and signed up immediately. The actress is over the moon as she has been a huge Amitabh Bachchan fan since her childhood and is very excited about sharing screen space with him and playing his wife at that. Filming is to start soon and Kushboo can hardly wait to get started. Her young daughters are also very happy and are hoping they will get to meet the Bollywood superstar.

Ekta Kapoor: I am Censor's favourite punching bag Producer Ekta Kapoor is peeved with Censor Board from the time they gave her film “Kya Super Kool Hain Hum” an A Certificate considering its adult content and also denied its trailer show in theatres till she deletes few scenes. However, she adopted an alternate route and made the uncut trailer viral on the net. Ekta doesn't mince her words to talk about her equation with Censor Board. "I am Censor's favourite punching bag. I share a love-hate relationship with Censor Board. They hate me but I love them. I don't want to blame them. I seriously think they are really co-operative. The biggest problem the censors face is they have a huge pressure because of PILs that various people with various agendas for various incidences file," she says.

I have a great love for money: 'Playboy girl' Sherlyn Chopra

Sherlyn Chopra had created quite a stir when she announced that she would be posing nude for the Playboy Magazine. And now after the 'act' is done, she is back in Mumbai and eager to talk about her 'thrilling' experience. The starlet says, "It was the most amazing photo shoot and I can proudly say that these were the best days of my life. I first did a mock shoot with a photographer friend of mine to see how I looked without clothes. I loved what I saw and knew that with a professional team shooting me nude, I would look phenomenal. That is exactly what the magazine team has achieved and when people all over the world see me on the cover, they will all say, Wow!" Sherlyn is quite candid about the fact that money is a big temptation when it comes to shedding inhibitions. She states, "I have a great love for money and I feel no shame in wanting to have more because wanting a happier life is no crime."

Akshay Kumar rides `1 mn bike in 'Oh My God!' Bollywood's action king Akshay Kumar will be seen riding a specially designed motorcycle worth about `1 million in his upcoming movie "Oh My God!" The motorcycle, Vardenchi Chopper, has been especially conceptualised for the movie, keeping in mind its theme and concept. "It took Vardenchi 45 days to make the Chopper. It is designed keeping in mind the look of the film and the splendid personality of Akshay. Akshay loved the design and was very impressed by the drool factor of the motorcycle," said a source. The motorcycle has some unique features, such as 500 cc engine, eye-catching graphic jobs, double-sided swing arm, mirror classic chrome and 300 mm rear tyre. "Oh My God!" releases on Sept 28 and also features Paresh Rawal.

Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Love, says a very close friend of Katrina, is high on her list of priorities in her 28th year. Katrina who turned 28 last week has set a time-frame for herself to find love. In the next one year love better find its way into her life. Says the friend, “In the last couple of years Katrina has only been focusing on her work. She has no choice. All her friends from the film industry have attached their hearts to a loved one. Katrina seems to be missing the chance to find love. She isn’t a party animal. Nor does she believe that love work is a good substitute for love. She has definite dreams of domesticity. She loves the life of a family girl. And when she sees her sisters happily married or blissfully in love she gets lonely. As she told a friend, ‘Every evening I return to an empty home. All my friends have a family or a love life. My family stays away and I hate asking my mom or sisters to leave their obligations and come running to join me here in Mumbai. I am not a little baby. I can look after myself.’ But yes, this sizzling babe loves babies.


Now when her sister has two adorable kids, the idea of marriage and motherhood are immensely appealing to Katrina. Says the friend, “Katrina believes in romantic love. Her concept of romance is picked up from Mills & Boon novels. She’s waiting for the onslaught of love specially now when she has performed the most romantic scenes of her life for Yash Chopra’s film. Reciting the poems by Gulzar Saab, Katrina has become quite a poet herself. She secretly pens poems about solitude and companionship. But if you ask her about it she will deny it. She won’t exchange her romantic dreams for a fistful of admiring glances. ”

The Alps are alive with the sounds of Bollywood It could be a scene straight from “The Sound of Music.” In a Swiss Alpine meadow, a young couple dance playfully beside a mountain stream, surrounded by wildflowers. As cowbells ring in the distance, she twirls her pigtails as they sing together beside a chocolate-box wooden chalet. But in this production, Julie Andrews and the Von Trapp family are nowhere to be seen. Instead, the actors are speaking Hindi and the movie, “Diwale Dulhania Le Jayenge” (The Brave-Hearted Will Take the Bride), is a Bollywood dance hit starring the Indian megastars Kajol and Shah Rukh Khan. As Switzerland’s tourism industry struggles amid the eurozone debt woes, a surge in the number of Bollywood films being shot there is helping to compensate by attracting a flood of tourists from the subcontinent. With at least 15 Indian films a year now being shot in Switzerland, the country recorded a jump of more than 20 per cent in the number of Indian visitors last year, with a total of 456,930 overnight stays. This year, Swiss officials believe that the figure could exceed half a million. For Ritu Sharma, a spokeswoman for Switzerland Tourism in Mumbai, the figures are a vindication of more than ten years of work supporting Indian filmmakers with an interest in shooting in Switzerland.

“We’ve had a lot of help from Bollywood,” she said, adding that Switzerland had hosted movies filmed not only in Hindi but also Tamil, Telugu and other regional languages. “The Swiss cliché of mountains, meadows and lakes has really put us into the hearts of Indians.” Sarath Kumar, a Tamil superstar who has shot several films in the Alps, believes that Switzerland has come to occupy a unique place in the Indian imagination. “It’s like paradise on Earth,” said Kumar, who can be seen in the hit Tamil film Rishi gyrating energetically along the Chapel Bridge in Lucerne. “It’s very picturesque and we have a lot of dancing in our films so we need good scenery. Everything is just so clean and efficient - these are things we don’t find in our own country.” The Swiss tourism authorities have been swift to recognise the potential, offering tax breaks and rebates to Indian film-makers. “It’s great – you can just get off a plane from Mumbai and start shooting – nobody cares,” one producer said. And it’s a recipe that is clearly working, as newly affluent Indians travel overseas in growing numbers, many making Switzerland their first choice. According to India’s Ministry of Tourism, the number of Indians travelling abroad hit 13 million in 2010, an increase of more than six fold from 1.9 million in 1991.

The Kapoors want Saif-Kareena wedding in Mumbai To have the year’s biggest wedding – no need to state which one - would be held in Mumbai instead of Saif Ali Khan’s native place Pataudi, as planned earlier. It was the father of the bride Randhir Kapoor who approached the mother of the bridegroom Sharmila Tagore requesting that the venue be shifted from the Pataudi’s ancestral place to amchi Mumbai. Says a source, “Sharmilaji was keen for the wedding to be held in Pataudi. And since the whole family, including Kareena, is going by what Sharmilaji desires for the wedding the venue was decided. But then Kareena’s parents had a valid objection the wedding being held in Pataudi. Most of their family and friends were in Mumbai. Beside Randhir’s mother Mrs Krishna Raj Kapoor is unable to travel. So Randhir Kapoor requested Sharmilaji for a shift on Mumbai.” Now a big fat Punjabi-Bengali-Muslim wedding is being chalked out in Mumbai for October 16.

Aamir Khan’s son to make Bollywood debut Aamir Khan’s 17- year -old son Junaid is entering into Bollywood as an Assistant Director with the movie “Peekay” directed by Rajkumar Hirani and the lead roles will be played by Aamir and Anushka Sharma. The shooting of the movie will start by the end of this year and scheduled to release in 2013. As per reports, the job was offered by none other than Hirani who was impressed with the cinematic understanding of Junaid. Junaid often accompanied his father on the sets of his films. On the other hand, Junaid persuaded Mr Perfectionist that the job will not affect his study. As a part of the movie, Junaid will travel across India for suitable shooting locations. Juaind is the son of Aamir and his first wife Reena Dutta.


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012


Sporting Venues

OLYMPIC STADIUM Capacity: 80,000 Sports: Athletics (plus opening and closing ceremonies) AQUATICS CENTRE Capacity:17,500 Sports: Diving, swimming, synchronized swimming, modern pentathlon. RIVERBANK ARENA Capacity: 15,000 Sports: Hockey BASKETBALL ARENA Capacity: 12,000

Sports: Basketball, handball finals COPPER BOX Capacity: 6,500 Sports: handball, modern pentathlon (fencing) VELODROME Capacity: 6,000 Sport: Track Cycling BMX TRACK Capacity: 6,000 Sports: BMX Cycling WATER POLO ARENA Capacity: 5,000 Sports: Water polo

Venues Around London ALL ENGLAND LAWN TENNIS AND CROQUET CLUB Capacity: 30,000 Sport: Tennis GREENWICH PARK Capacity: 23,000 Sports: Equestrian, modern pentathlon NORTH GREENWICH ARENA Capacity: 20,000 Sports: Gymnastics (artistic, trampoline), basketball finals HORSE GUARDS PARADE Capacity: 15,000 Sport: Beach volleyball EARLS COURT EXHIBITION CENTRE Capacity: 15,000 Sports: Volleyball

ExCel. Capacity: 4,000 to 10,000 depending on event. Sports: Boxing, fencing, judo, table tennis, taekwondo, weightlifting, wrestling ROYAL ARTILLERY BARRACKS Capacity: 7,500 Sport: Shooting LORD’S CRICKET GROUND Capacity: 6,500 Sport: Archery WEMBLEY ARENA Capacity: 6,000 Sports: Badminton, rhythmic gymnastics HYDE PARK Capacity: 3,000 Sports: Triathlon, marathon, swimming (10 km)

Sushil Kumar named India's flag-bearer Sushil Kumar, the Beijing Olympics bronze winning wrestler, will be India's flag-bearer at the London Games' opening ceremony July 27. Indian Olympic Association (IOA) acting president Vijay Kumar Malhotra announced that Sushil was chosen for the honour after due consideration. Malhotra said other Olympic medallists Leander Paes (tennis), Abhinav Bindra (shooting) and Vijender Singh (boxing), were also in the reckoning for the flag-bearer's role.

"Sushil will be India's flag-bearer at the London Games. Names of Paes, Bindra and Vijender were also brought up for the role. Paes has already given the honour while Bindra and Vijender have their competition in the early days of t h e Olympics," Malhotra said. V i j e n d e r, who was the other bronze medallist at Beijing, has his first round bout a day after the opening ceremony while shooter Bindra's event is also in the initial days of the mega event.

Mittal and family meet Indian Olympians at Hyde Park Rupanjana Dutta As tourists and locals basked in the sun by the Serpentine, Hyde Park, we made our way to a posh party for the London Olympians hosted by Lakshmi Mittal and the Trustees of the Mittal Champions Trust at the Serpentine gallery. It was my first official invitation by the tycoon and I was bubbling with excitement to meet the legend, who was born in the same town as me, in fact went to the same college as I. Decorated with green and orange cushions, the centre covered pavilion looked beautiful as we walked around enjoying the summer evening, sipping to our cool drinks, in presence of Indian sportsmen such as Mahesh Bhupati and Rohan Bopanna (Tennis), Bombaliya Devi Laishram and Chekrowulo Swuro (archers) and Heena Sidhu (shooter). After a brief greet and meet, the Mittal family gathered at the centre of the pavilion, as Amit Bhatia, Mr Mittal's son in law welcomed the guests formally. He said, "On behalf of my family I thank you all for coming down tonight, thank you also for being there to support our athletes of the

Laksmi Mittal, Chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO of ArcelorMittal with daughter Vanisha, son Aditya, son in law Amit Bhatia, wife Usha and grandson at the reception

Mittal's Champion's Trust. I would also like to welcome our athletes this evening, the fact that you're all here today means that you've qualified for these games which in itself is a wonderful achievement and I know that for many of you it is a combination of many years of hard work and dedication Continued on page 23

Are communities ready to embrace the games?

Ramesh Vala OBE

runner (now retired), Fauja Singh, had been chosen to carry the torch. Will the Gujarati community follow suit when the torch reaches Harrow (and Wembley)? I have my doubts but the very least that the Gujarati community in Wembley can do is to ensure that Ealing Road and approaches to Wembley Stadium are cleaned up. In particular, it would be wonderful if the pavements were jet-washed and given back to the pedestrians. We all know this will not happen so let us work on what can be achieved. It is time for the entire Asian community to get behind the nation and those representing the country in what should be a glorious euphoria. Let us stop worry-

ing about our own little discomforts over the next few weeks, welcome visitors from all over and leave them with a beautiful and lasting impression of London as the greatest city in the world. As a nominee for the torch relay and a London Ambassador, I cannot wait for the Games to commence. Having attended the technical rehearsal ceremony at the Olympic Stadium on Monday evening, I urge everyone to get some food and drinks together, find a television set on Friday evening and watch Danny Boyle’s ‘Isles of Wonder’ extravaganza. Let us hope the weather is kind, the winners are judged to be clean and the Games pass without any threats or incidents of terrorism.

Olympic torch touches down London in dramatic style

Fauja Singh draws loudest cheers

The Olympic flame made a dramatic arrival in London on Friday when it was flown in by military helicopter and lowered to the ground by a marine commando a week ahead of the opening ceremony. As the sun went down over the British capital, Royal Marine Martyn Williams got down from a Sea King helicopter hovering over the River Thames, carrying the Olympic flame to the ground in a lantern hanging from his belt. Williams, 23, who was injured in Afghanistan in 2008 but is now fit again, passed the flame to British athlete Kelly Holmes. The winner of the 800 metres and 1,500m at the 2004 Athens Olympics then used the lantern to light the Olympic torch. The flame will spend the

The Games have finally arrived after seven years of waiting and we all hope that the community served by this newspaper is both ready to welcome and embrace the spirit of the Games. More than the spirit, it is hoped that we also do our ‘bit’ for the country which has been our home for several decades. The Sikh community set the tone on Saturday, 21st July. Thousands of vegetarian meals were served along the Olympic torch relay route from Greenwich Park to Waltham Forest Town Hall. Over fifteen Gurudwaras joined hands to organise the ‘langar’ to celebrate the fact that the 101 year old legendary London based marathon

night locked up in the Tower of London, the 11th century fortress where Queen Elizabeth II keeps her ceremonial jewels and where the Olympic medals are also being stored for safekeeping. It will then embark on a seven-day tour of the capital - the culmination of an 8,000-mile (12,800-km) relay around Britain and the Republic of Ireland. London Olympic chairman Sebastian Coe said he was "delighted" to welcome the flame at the

end of the 63rd day of the relay, adding: "It's made an extraordinary journey." Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: "Tonight London becomes the first city in history to be entrusted three times with the sacred flame of the Olympics first kindled by the ancient Greeks. It will spread the crackling bush fire of Olympic enthusiasm throughout this city and this country. I pledge that we will keep that flame burning brightly." The torch began its tour of London on Saturday and will travel through every London borough, carried by 982 torchbearers, in the coming week. Finally, the last torchbearer will light a cauldron at the opening ceremony in the Olympic Stadium, marking the official start of the Games.

Punjab-born Fauja Singh, who defies age to run marathons, drew the loudest cheers as the Olympic Torch was carried by him, Olympic medal winners and leading individuals through London amidst a welcome clear sky and sunshine. Clad in all-white apparel and a matching white turban, the sprightly Singh carried the torch accompanied by hundreds of admirers, including Sikhs with yellow T-shirts bearing Singh's image, who hailed him every moment of the distance he travelled. Continued on page 23

Indian rowers in special Rowing Village The Indian rowing team arrived in London but instead of the regular athletes’ Village, the threemember team checked into a special Rowing Village at the Royal Holloway. The Rowing Village is over 60 miles from the Olympic Games Village at Stratford. "The Olympic rowers (men and women) are staying in the hostel accommodation of Royal Holloway College and the ambiance is wonderful," said the Indian contingent's Deputy chef-de-mission Brig P K Muralidharan Raja. "After having had a guided tour of the facilities at the Royal Holloway, I went to the Eton Dorney Rowing Course where the Indian Rowing Team was waiting for their turn to start their training sessions," he said. The Indian team comprises Swarn Singh Virk in the Single Sculls and Sandeep Kumar and Manjeet Singh in the Lightweight Double Sculls. Indian touch to Olympic arts A handful of illustrious Indians have lent their creative touch to give the London Olympics some Indian touches. When the Olympic unveils on July 27, iconic sculptor Anish Kapoor, the India-born winner of the Turner Prize, has given Britain its Olympic mascot - the ArcelorMittal Orbit - the country's biggest public art installation. The giant Orbit is a 115-metre high steel observation tower at Olympic Park in Stratford in London that is likely to help in the post-Olympic regeneration of the area. Kapoor designed the Orbit with Cecil Balmond with steel donated by India-born steel tycoon Laskhmi Mittal. Artist Kapoor, who sculpts futuristic forms in steel and glass, said that the making of the Orbit was a "series of discrete events tied together." Then, there are two other

Indian touches to the Games. Shobhana Jeyasingh, a Chennai-born contemporary dancer who works out of Britain, was approached by the committee to present her new choreography, "Too Mortal" in the Old Churches of London during the Olympic festival. Noted graphic novel writer and artist Sarnath Banerjee, the author of the best-selling "The Barn Owl's Wondrous Capers", has taken his graphic textual art to Olympic billboards in London with a message: "Games Don't Just Deal With Winning". The Olympic public art project commissioned by Frieze East is made of several billboards, graphic essays and posters. Banerjee says the project is against the sensibility of the Olympic Games which is about winning. "It is a campaign about people who fail". UK using Olympics to lobby India deals? The UK is laying out the red carpet for leaders and officials of "cash-rich" emerging countries such as India, Brazil and China during the Olympics to lobby and win high-value trade deals for British companies, a media report said. A building - Lancaster House has been refurbished opposite Buckingham Palace to hold meetings between ministers and politicians

from the target countries for multi-billion-pound deals that will help the ailing British economy, reports said. The deals in India that Britain reportedly seeks to win are: laying new metro lines or improving existing ones, the Navi Mumbai International Airport and the "regeneration" of Kolkata promised by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerji. Who won the first individual Olympic medal for India? The first individual medalist representing India was Norman Pritchard who won silver in the 200 meter dash and 200 meter hurdles in the 1900 Olympics in Paris. Pritchard was of British descent and moved to England permanently in 1905. The first individual medalist of Indian descent from India was Khashaba Jadav who won bronze in Men's Freestyle Bantamweight wrestling at the 1952 Games in Helsinki. In the 2008 Games in Beijing, Abhinav Bindra became the first Indian to win gold in an individual event when he won the men's 10 meter air rifle competition. This was India's 9th gold medal in Olympic competition. The other eight have been won by the hockey team.

● Anil Kapoor has got an invitation for the 2012 Summer Olympics not only by Danny Boyle but also by Laksmi Mittal. He has planned to meet all the Indian players participating in the various games. Anil Kapoor will accompany Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and filmmaker Karan Johar toLondon to be a part of an Extravagant Olympiad event. ● PM David Cameron has invited the Indian PM Manmohan Singh to take part in the opening ceremony. Karan Johar has also been invited, but his invite has come from the Visit Britain authorities. He will catch the opening ceremony in a special box reserved for the who's who of the world. ● The Indian High Commission has also organised a reception for the Indian athletes on Thursday in London.

Indian Rajiv Ouseph to represent GB in badminton

Opening ceremony slashed The £27million opening extravaganza was chopped by half an hour because of fears of delays at G4S checkpoints and a travel shambles. Several scenes have been shortened in the middle of rehearsals. And one - involving daredevil flaming stunt bikes - has been axed altogether. Authorities took the decision to meddle with the timetable in the wake of the astonishing failure by security firm G4S to provide enough guards which has forced the Government to call in the Army. A source said: “The show has been cut because of fears that the checkpoints couldn’t cope with the huge rush in and out of the stadium.” The stunning pageant, masterminded by “Slumdog Millionaire” director Danny Boyle, is expected to be seen by a worldwide TV audience of one billion. Tickets to see it live cost up to £2,012. It will transform the Olympic Stadium into rolling British countryside, complete with live farmyard animals. The source added: “It’s not just crowds of fans, athletes and performers G4S and our soldiers will have to cope with - it’s dozens of live animals as well. “All will have to be

checked and searched before being allowed into the secure area. It’s a huge logistical challenge.” Organisers hope cutting the running time down to three hours will help struggling G4S staff and troops cope with 80,000 fans, 16,000 athletes, 10,000 performers, 70 sheep, 12 horses, ten chickens, three cows, two goats, eight geese and three dogs. Boyle and his team were worried that the show - starting at 9 pm on Friday - would leave the crowd and performers stranded in East London if it went on past midnight. Performers arriving at the stadium for rehearsals have already faced delays of up to an hour to get in as security staff failed even to cope with a small number of people. An actor playing a soldier in one of the segments said: “The queues on Saturday went way back into the Westfield shopping centre. It was worse than waiting at US immigration on a bad day.” Disappointed performers have been told about the cuts. But a spokeswoman said: “It’s not a question of shortening the show - we’re just trimming segments to keep them tight and concise so it all runs smoothly.

Rajiv Ouseph, an Indian origin youth from Hounslow, has been selected to represent Team Great Britain in Badminton men’s singles in the Olympics. This will be a historic and proud moment for Indians, especially Malayalee migrants to the United Kingdom. No other Indian has achieved such an accomplishment. The 25year-old told BBC London: "Expectation is a big thing for an athlete. Not many people get a chance to compete in a home Games. I don't think it's natural to be casual about it. I'll try and use any nervous energy in a good way and help it get me going."

He added: "People go one or two ways. They either get a bit too nervous or get inspired. Hopefully for me it will be the latter. "I'm trying to deal with it as well as possible." After Ouseph's performances this year secured him a seeding for the tournament, the Hounslow-born player is hopeful of progressing to the latter stages in what will be his first taste of Olympic competition. "This year I've had one or two good wins and I know I've beaten some of the best players in the world," he continued.


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

IMF: Britain is facing a long housing market slump

Dear Financial Voice Reader, Have you heard of Mumpreneurs. Love the term. On 26th September, I will be a keynote speaker at the Women Empowered event, founded by the ebullient and motherly Reena Ranger. I was interviewed recently by the founder of Deepali Nangia who provides support to business ‘mumpreneurs’. There can be little doubt about male dominance when only one out of a hundred of the UK’s largest companies are headed by a woman. Even in the US, it’s a similar proportion of women who head Fortune 500 companies. How ironic. Research shows 46 per cent of all US businesses are owned by women, and employment at women-owned businesses is growing at 18 per cent, compared with 8 per cent for all companies, according to business magazine Forbes. Actually, US women have an average net worth of £1.96 billion compared with the men, at £1.45 billion. And when it comes to investment, research also shows women make better investors than men. Luckily for men, there is much they can learn from women. What is it women do in stock picking, research, trading, that produces better results and how can men use the web to close the gender gap? Women’s portfolio’s earned 1.4% annually more than men’s did in a study of over 35,000 investors by the University of California at Davis. Indeed single women earned 2.3% annually more than single men. Poor male performance is due to over-trading according to the study. Men trade their accounts 45% more often than women. And single men shuffle their holdings 67% more than single women. Perhaps the adage about men’s fear of commitment is true after all. A National Association of Investors Corporation tenyear study found all-female investment clubs outpaced all-male investment clubs by producing 23.8% average compounded lifetime annual returns compared to 19.2% for male clubs. So what lessons are their for men? After all, as a sex, we men are always ready and willing to learn from women, aren’t we? Do not male drivers at the first opportunity admit they are lost and ask passers-by for help? First, save transaction costs by not churning your portfolio. Second, men should spend more time researching before investing. Fear of making a mistake was 50% to 60% higher among women than among males according to the US National Center for Women & Retirement Research. Consequently, women spend 40% more time than men researching and are also less likely to trade on a ‘hot tip’. Third men need to reign in their overconfidence. 52% of men express confidence in their ability to invest wisely, compared to just 38% of women according to the American Savings Economic Council. Men are overconfident in their abilities to pick market beating stocks. This in turn often makes women better traders – more risk averse, awaiting clearer market signals for good trading opportunities and more diversified. So what do women need? A little more confidence to start investing, but not so much as to make them bad investors, appears to be the difficult resolution. Alpesh Patel •

India’s TOPSGRUP acquires in UK security firm TOPSGRUP, India’s largest security group and the most preferred security brand, has completed the 100 per cent acquisition of The Shield Guarding Company Limited, a reputed British security firm for a sum of £19.5 million. This acquisition has positioned the company’s Global Chairman, Dr Richie Nanda, as the only entrepreneur of an Indian Multi-National Company (MNC) to purchase a 100 per cent stake in a British security company. Dr Nanda’s acquisition of The Shield Guarding Company Limited comes after his new entrant status in the Sunday Times Rich List 2012, with an estimated personal fortune of £168 million.

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Home owners in Britain face the threat of an “extended housing market slump,” according to an IMF report which also warns that George Osborne may have to change course if the economy fails to pick up in the next six months. Property prices are still too high, despite sharp declines after the 2008 banking crash and could drop by another 10 to 15 per cent relative to people’s incomes. This is likely to further squeeze consumer spending, prolonging the downturn, the IMF added. In a bleak assessment of Britain’s performance, the report warned that Mr Osborne should scale back his deficit-reduction plans in the next Budget if the economy has not gained momentum by early next year. The IMF also cast doubt on claims that easing back on austerity would provoke a backlash in the financial markets. The economy has failed to grow for nearly two years, and this extended period of stagnation risks causing permanent damage to economic potential, the IMF said in its annual Article IV report. “The effects of a persistently weak economy and high long-term unemployment can reverberate through a country’s economy long into the future,” Ajai Chopra, the IMF’s mission chief to the

UK, said. “The priority for UK policymakers is to implement more expansionary economic policies, important elements of which are now in train.” The coalition recently implemented plans to boost lending to businesses and households and guarantee new infrastracture projects as part of its efforts encourage growth. But the analysis from the Washington-based IMF will come as a fresh blow to the Chancellor, who has set great store by the support that he has received from Christine Lagarde, its managing director. The IMF has cut its forecast for UK growth to 0.2 per cent this year - the biggest reduction of any big advanced economy. Growth will pick up to 1.4 per cent next year, but that still left Britain facing its weakest recovery from a recession, the IMF said. Property prices have remained broadly flat for the past two years after the steep declines during the banking crisis of 2007-08. Yet when compared with people’s incomes, values are still 30 per cent above their historical averages, according to the IMF. Ed Balls, the Shadow Chancellor, said: “This is a very serious warning to the Chancellor that urgent action to boost jobs and growth is needed. How much longer must we wait, and how much more

damage must be done, before George Osborne finally does the most important U-turn of all?” A spokesman for the Treasury said: “The IMF has repeated its advice that Britain’s fiscal plans are appropriate, that we are right to support the economy through monetary and credit easing as well as government guarantees for infrastructure, and that the uncertainty and instability in the eurozone is the overarching risk to the economy.” The Treasury is resisting calls for the Government’s planned spending cuts to be slowed down, amid fears that this would be seen as bowing to Labour’s call for a “Plan B”. The Treasury’s plans allow for welfare spending to rise in the case of a deeper downturn which would support the economy. Fleshing out a preliminary report published in May, the IMF also suggested a range of actions to stimulate growth, including a cut in the Bank of England’s key rate to below 0.5 per cent. Sir Mervyn King, the Bank’s governor, should authorise the purchase of private-sector debts on top of government bonds, in order to help stimulate the mortgage market, the Fund said. The Government could raise taxes or cut public sector wages to fund infrastructure spending as part

of a package of “neutral” reforms to the Budget plans. If those measures fail to get growth going, however, Mr Osborne will have to scale back his austerity plans, the Fund said, publishing a timetable for this for the first time. “Fiscal adjustment for [the fiscal year] 2013-14 would need to be scaled back if growth does not build momentum by early 2013,” the Fund said. The Fund’s officials said they now expect the Chancellor to miss his target for reducing the size of the national debt relative to gross domestic product by a year, but he should not tighten his fiscal plans to compensate. It questioned suggestions that the markets would revolt if Mr Osborne were seen to renege on his public debt targets. “Would this trigger an adverse market reaction? Such hypotheticals are impossible to answer definitively, but there is little evidence that it would,” the IMF said. The words are significant because the IMF has long been seen by Mr Osborne has a key arbiter of government policy. Appearing with the Chancellor in May, managing director Christine Lagarde praised Mr Osborne’s handling of the economy. Property prices have remained broadly flat for the past two years following the steep declines in the wake of the banking crash of 2007-08.

State Bank of India UK launches SBI Premier

State Bank of India UK has always endeavoured to create leading products and services that reflect the continuously evolving financial needs of our time. SBI Premier is the latest such initiative to ensure a superior banking experience through understanding of customer requirements. Designed with an exclusive offering in mind, SBI Premier consists of an array of financial and lifestyle benefits complemented with personalised service and a host of other seasonal offers. A Dedicated Relationship Manager: SBI Premier customers are offered one-to-one interaction with a dedicated

Personal Relationship Manager who will assist them with all their financial and banking needs. Preferential Interest Rates: SBI Premier customers would be eligible for preferential interest rates of 0.25% more than a regular Current or Instant Access Savings Account. Specifi call: 2.25% AER for GBP Instant Access Account for balances above £50,000 0.25% AER for GBP Current Account for balances above £50,000

Enhanced limits with the SBI Premier debit card: The SBI Premier debit card comes with enhanced withdrawal limits of up to £750 giving instant access to cash any time. Customers can transact for free at any of over 26,000 ATMs and 19,000 branches of any bank under the State Bank of India Group in India and UK ATMs displaying the MasterCard® logo. Exciting Partner rewards and offers: SBI Premier customers can make the most of exclusive benefits and exciting offers from the world of entertainment and lifestyle services from our partners Zee Network, Cineworld

Cinemas, MasterCard® and International SOS. In addition, they can enjoy other seasonal benefits with SBI Premier. Free subscription of ZEE channels/ Free movies every month from Cineworld/ Free concierge and lifestyle solutions in India/ Peace of mind for the entire family at home or abroad with free travel insurance Eligibility criteria and account maintenance fees apply. Avail of an introductory offer on account maintenance fees at only £12 per month or only £120 if you pay for the year (regular account maintenance fees is £15/month or £150/annually).

Lloyds Banking to sell 632 branches to Co-op Group Lloyds Banking Group, 39 per cent owned by the nation, has agreed to sell 632 branches to the Cooperative Group for far less than the £1.5bn to £2 bn initially anticipated. The British taxpayer and fellow Lloyds shareholders are receiving just an initial £350m for the bank’s forced sale of its branches ordered by Brussels, a fraction of the billions which were on offer. The deal hands the Coop some 4.8 m customers and will triple the size of

its banking arm to nearly 1,000 branches, taking its market share from 4pc to 10pc. Britain’s largest mutual now becomes a serious challenger to the UK’s dominant five banks, a move it called the “biggest shake-up in high street banking for a generation”. Lloyds shareholders said that the European competition authorities had been “too punitive” in their edict that forced the British bank to sell by a November 2013 deadline,

after it received state aid. Under heads of terms revealed aside from the £350m to be paid up front for the branches, known as the Verde business, Lloyds may get £400m more if targets are met but will have to wait until 2027 to receive the full amount. “This is a forced deal, which has meant Lloyds virtually had to pay to have it taken off its hands,” said one top ten investor. “Lloyds should have had more time,” said another,

adding that funding for banking acquisitions is currently nearly impossible. David Buik, a veteran City commentator, called it “daylight robbery”. “The government should have insisted on a 'full and fair’ price for this transaction,” he said. Banking sources said the sale was settled despite a previous offer from rival NBNK Investments, a vehicle created to bid for the assets, of £800m up front, plus over £400m in performance-related payments.


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012


Forget your whims and follow the mantra, Location, Location, Location !

Suresh Vagjiani Sow & Reap A Property Investment Company

A good few months ago we sourced a two bedroom property for a Mr Patel. He had invested in a couple of BTL properties in his local area of Milton Keynes. The properties didn’t’ really go up in value or produce any substantial amount of rent, they were just ticking over. Basically they were stagnant investments: hadn’t really gone up in value, and weren’t producing income every month. The idea of investing in property is no doubt a good principle to follow, but where and how is the question. Generally when people want to invest they look at the area local to them. This means it’s still in their comfort zone and they feel safe with the knowledge if there are any maintenance issues they can handle them directly. And in the future one of their children can live in the property, and they can all live as one big happy extended family. However they need to be honest and realise then that the investment isn’t the main objective, it is more of a lifestyle choice. If it’ s investment you re quire t hen the aim is ho w to mak e as mu ch mon ey as possible in the sho rtest amou nt of t ime . This is t he aim, e verything else is second ary. The other issue many investors get caught up with is the idea of investing in a leasehold property which most properties in Central London tend to be. There are a couple of reasons way:. First when they purchase a property they wish to keep it in their family for 21 generations, therefore if it’s not freehold they cannot do this as in the next 100 years or so the lease will expire. They’re not so concerned that they themselves will expire but the property should live on in their future generations. The second is a perception that the value of the property is declining. It is of course a fact that year by year the length of the lease is getting shorter. This does not mean the value of the property is decreasing, the value of the property in fact is increasing. Again you need to ask what is the purpose of the investment? Is it to purchase a freehold property? Or is it to make as much money as possible? If it’s the latter then your decision should be based on this alone, to the exclusion of any other sentiments. Generally if you have two objectives you cannot achieve either one very well. So our client was tired of having sluggish investments and saw the value of our proposition, and so decided to come in and see us and commit to our plan.

It’s interesting that whe n it c omes to any le gal issues we con su lt a lawyer, and he alth issu es we consult o ur do ctor, bu t when it come s to property we f ollow o ur whims. I g uess part of t he issue is the re is no set qu alification, and it doesn’ t he lp when all yo u nee d to be an est ate age nt is a mobile pho ne, so inevitably most of the m are n ot ren own ed for the ir in teg rity or k nowledg e.

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The investor signed our terms and we started the process. It took several months to get the deal done, this was due to him having a lot on his plate due to work and personal commitments. In the end we managed to source a two bedroom duplex apartment in Camden Town, a little outside of our patch but a very strong location, not simply because of the strong rental yield, but this patch will benefit from the regeneration of Kings Cross. An investment in the region of £1bn is being poured into this area, and so the future growth and rentability of the property is assured. The property was in an ex council block, not pretty but again the objective is to make money not to have a pretty property. The property was purchased for £275,000 and a further £20,000 was spent refurbishing the property up to an exceptionally high standard. In this scenario we had introduced the builders and the investor had liaised with them directly. In our opinion the work was done to a higher standard than necessary, there comes a point where the extra input will not lead to a higher output. Even considering this, the property was valued recently by two agents, one value was given at £400,000 by Foxtons, and another by Faron Sutaria at £350,000. This was a buy and hold property and so it was rented on a three year contract at £420pw, thus giving a yield of just under 8% which is a very strong yield for this location. Our client was very happy with the end result, so now he has got together with a group of friends, they are currently looking to pool their funds in and do this in a bigger way. With more funds you generally get bigger bargains as the markets are like a pyramid shape, there are fewer deals at the top of the pyramid compared to down below where the masses reside. So clubbing your funds together with a group of friends is a good move, as long as everyone is singing off the same hymn sheet. Issues arise when each scenario is not laid out clearly, when there are too many decision makers, and when the objective is not clear. Due to the larger level of funds, it has been agreed rather than a buy and hold strategy we will be pursuing a buy and sell strategy. This requires more work but should result in more aggressive returns. With the best will in the world it may not go to plan and you could end up being stuck with the property, so provisions need to be put in place for this scenario. The criteria is it must be a strong location and therefore to rent and refinance, which is the other option, will be a viable second route. Earlier this week we held a seminar which had a turnout of around 30 people. It seems the appetite for investing is still strong and many recognise the value of our proposition, as many have bought properties already but they haven’t grown as much as the Central London market, neither is the yield anywhere as high. One couple we met at the seminar had purchased properties outside of London and now the debt has become toxic, meaning the value of the properties are worth less than what is owed. Luckily they are all on base rate trackers and so very low, this means they are producing income month to month.

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Tips of the Week l Remember the mantra of property investment, it’s a bit like trying to be self realised, you must forget your whims and follow the mantra, in property it is Location, Location, Location! l It’s good to diversfy with property, but always keep the location in mind.


financial voICe

Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

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

Maria Fernandes

Points Based System declared unlawful The points based system has suffered a huge set back. The Supreme Court, the highest court in the land last week lambasted the UKBA by declaring their methods unlawful. It is case that the media have not been particularly interested. However it is a decision which is a victory for the application of democratic principles. In recent years all government but particularly this one have introduced a broad brush approach to immigration leaving the detail in guidance which is not subject to parliamentary scrutiny. The danger with this is that the guidance can be changed without any oversight. The judges quite early on expressed concern about

this system as they took the view that it was unconstitutional. The latest case finally laid to rest the issue by declaring the current system unlawful. The response of the UKBA is to put this guidance into the main body of the law rather than in separate guidance at breathtaking speed. It will apply to cases on or after the 20th July. However there is still the difficult problem of what happens to the cases that were made before this. Undoubtedly a floodgate of cases could be in the pipeline that will rely on this issue. Time and time again concerns were expressed by lawyers about the legality of these methods but they were ignored. It was far easier

for the UKBA to manipulate the guidance by treating it as law when in reality it was not. Many have relied on the guidance as anything but. Now after huge cost to the public purse by fighting this they have been forced to do so anyway. Hopefully lessons have been learned. Immigration may be a political football but the judges apply the law in this area as much as any other. Maria Fernandes has been in practice exclusively in immigration for the past 25 years. Fernandes Vaz is based at 87 Wembley Hill Road Wembley in Wembley and can be contacted by telephone on 02087330123, by email on

Maruti declares lockout at Manesar plant following violence

Maruti Suzuki on Saturday declared a lockout at the violence-hit Manesar plant, stating it cannot risk life and safety of its employees. “There is now a lockout. To me, what is more important is safety of my colleagues than producing some cars to make some money,” Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) Chairman R C Bhargava said at a press conference. MSI General Manager (HR) Awanish Kumar Dev was burnt to death and about 90 officials and supervisors were injured when violence broke out at Manesar plant in Haryana on July 18. He said production will not resume till investigation into the incident is completed and corrective steps are taken to ensure that there is no recurrence of violence which came as “shocker” to the company.

By Neil Munshi For nearly half a century, India’s most subversive social satirist has been a bluehaired, round-faced moppet who wields dairy-based puns on everything from multibillion-dollar financial scandals to government corruption and celebrity gossip. The Amul girl, the cartoon mascot of a 3mstrong collective of dairy farmers, is India’s most famous advertising mascot and has helped turn the company she represents into one of the country’s most trusted brands. Amul, India’s biggest dairy products company with revenues of $2.5bn, sits at the nexus of old and new India, linking the Gandhian ideal of a country based on cooperative rural villages and today’s emerging 21st-century economic powerhouse. “It’s completely Indian,” says Rama Bijapurkar, a market research expert. “It’s a brand that belongs in the canvas of life [here] – and I can’t think of many other brands that do that…it deals with my life, my country, my family, it understands the local idiom – so it’s beyond simple marketing.” Gurcharan Das, a former chief executive of the Indian operations of Procter & Gamble, the fast-moving consumer goods company, and an economic commentator, echoes this view. “The values it is conveying are modern liberal values through those hoardings and through those messages,” he says. “It’s not just selling a product – it’s actually selling ideas about things that are right and wrong with our country.” Last month Amul’s India, a book of musings by Indian luminaries – including cricketer Sunil Gavaskar, Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan and Milind Deora, a member of parliament – on what the company means for their country celebrating the brand and its advertising. Amul’s enduring success is best under-

stood through its marketing. Amul spends just 1 per cent of its annual turnover on advertising but its campaigns built round the Amul girl and cartoon characters that send up current events have made the brand part of the national conversation. On a recent Tuesday illustrator Jayant Rane of daCunha Communications, the Mumbai agency that has run the campaign since its inception, turned his hand to the biggest news story of the day: the decision by India and Pakistan to reopen cricket ties for the first time since the 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai. The ad depicted an Indian and a Pakistani cricketer shaking hands, each with a slice of buttered bread in the other hand, and the Amul girl standing by smiling. By the next day, the billboard was up on Mumbai’s streets with the tagline: “Share with neighbours”. In recent weeks Amul has riffed on Time magazine’s cover story on the disappointing tenure of Manmohan Singh as prime minister, Roger Federer’s tennis victory over Andy Murray at Wimbledon and the death of Bollywood actor Dara Singh. The ads – most often involving puns based on bread and butter or dairy, in a mix of English and Hindi or a regional language – have helped the company build an identity that is both rooted in traditional India and, by tackling contemporary issues, stays tuned into the concerns of younger Indians. The Amul girl gets topical: The Amul girl is a social commentator without parallel in Indian society. The story of the brand, told through the hoardings that are ubiquitous throughout India, were collected in a book, Amul’s India, featuring essays from Sunil Gavaskar, Amitabh Bachchan and Milind Deora. Rahul daCunha oversees production of the ads and divides the country into five regions: Mumbai, south India, the east (including Calcutta), the Hindi belt in the north, and a new addition, Facebook. Each day, Mr daCunha and his team create ads for one of those regions and can, in a pinch, get it

A People’s President? Pranab Mukherjee will be the 13th President of India. He is charged with the responsibility to, in his own words, ‘defend, preserve and protect the constitution’. A noble role and one which has a deeper significance than many give it credit for. The role of President is generally a ceremonial one with no significant power and certainly no influence in the day to day running of the country. However, this year the post has been vigorously fought for by Mukherjee and P. Sangma. While the competition to win the coveted seat was vociferous and controversial, the real challenge begins now. The President is required to be neutral and unaffected by any political influences. Yet as Mukherjee was a prominent leader of the Congress party, one does wonder if this likely to bear true. Many have praised his appointment, citing his knowledge of the constitution and his honour and integrity. But it is difficult to ignore that the first well wishers to congratulate him were Sonia and Rahul Gandhi, followed by the

Prime Minister. Neutrality, impartiality and fairness are sacred ideals which all peoples wish and hope for, without really being able to implicitly prove their existence. The judicial system, for example, is ultimately based on complete and total trust. If the senior most judges in the land are shown to be corrupt or partial to a group or an ideology, then the entire system of law and order crumbles. Sadly, Indian politicians are more closely associated with exploitation and corruption than integrity and servitude. Too often we have seen politicians flout the law of the land only be to found to be exempt from punishment due to some technicality. Too long has the country succumbed to the illusion that a certain family is destined or born to rule. Today, most people do not trust politicians. Hopefully, the same will not be said for the President. For that person, like the judiciary, should deserve and command trust and faith. When new President elect stated that he would

from concept to billboard in six hours. While his father ran political ads from the start, Mr daCunha says the growth of political fodder has increased exponentially since he joined the agency 20 years ago. “[It] coincided with a time when more [messed] up stuff happened in this country,” he says. “Previously if you were corrupt, no one knew about it, you did it under the table. Nowadays it’s all Rs 40bn ($7.2bn) scams; a small scam is Rs 4bn, and you wonder how do you do that?” But branding only partly explains Amul’s continuing dominance. According to R.S. Sodhi, managing director of the Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation, Amul’s parent company, the unusual business model, involving more than 16,000 village co-operative societies, nearly 3.2m farmers, 5,600 distributors and a network of more than 1m retailers, works because “the production, processing and marketing [is] owned by the farmers”. The organisation was founded as the Kaira District Co-Operative Milk Producers’ Union in 1946. At that time, farmers were seeking to escape exploitation from middlemen and Britain’s colonial dominance of the milk sector, and sought help from Sardar Patel, one of the country’s independence leaders. He proposed the model that remains in place: professional management of a union of local village co-operatives through which farmers control the procurement, production and marketing for – at that time – the government-run Mumbai Milk Scheme. The Amul brand, short for Anand Milk Union Ltd, was launched in 1957 by Verghese Kurien, a Syrian-Christian from Kerala who had studied nuclear physics. Over the course of subsequent decades, his model was exported to other states, creating a network of linked co-operatives that continues to underpin the Indian dairy industry. “In terms of a country rapidly coming out of poverty and with a growing middle class, that kind of structure is ideal because it has enormous trust and confi-

By Amit Patel

defend the constitution, did he really believe that he could do any such thing? For was he not an integral part of the very system which has undermined the constitution. Was he not, until recently a servant of the very people that he must now oversee? Never before in the history of independent India has the post of President been more significant. His is the task of demonstrating that a President of India truly can be a servant of the nation. That he truly is a people’s President who can and will defend the core fabric of the republic, the constitution. Mr Mukherjee, congratulations on your win, but victory is a long way to being achieved. Amit Patel has over 20 years experience in the field of Personal Development and Human Resource Management. He provides consultancy services and ideas on issues such as Leadership, People Management and Development. To contact Amit, email amitpatelmail

dence within the subcontinent, and it has been supporting the livelihoods [of many farmers] for many, many decades,” says Dame Pauline Green, president of the International Co-operative Alliance. That model has also made it hard for big international food groups to gain a foothold in the dairy market. “Amul is a very reputed brand if you talk India as a nation,” says Mr Sodhi. Even in individual states where Amul has domestic competitors, they too are run as co-operatives “All are co-operative brands, all are number one in their states – and that is why still in India no private brand is able to emerge as a leader, because at a national level Amul is there to compete and at state level, regional brands are there to compete.” The company’s reliance on a diffuse network of milk procurement centres, because poor Indian farmers cannot afford to travel far to sell their milk, has also proved a powerful defence against foreign competitors. Where more commercial ventures might require big contracts with industrial farms to increase margins in order to meet shareholder demands, Amul’s suppliers can choose to sell their milk in whatever volume they can muster on that particular day. The average intake per farmer is just over 3 litres per day. While this is a small amount, the Amul model allows the company more flexibility than any international entrant might have. With so many suppliers on which to call, even if thousands of their suppliers were unable to supply milk on a certain day, they would not struggle to meet demand. “This is an extremely efficient company when it comes to supply,” says Arvind Singhal, head of Technopak, an Indian retail consultancy. “Their co-operative model gives them incredible options.” Paradoxically, Amul has succeeded both despite and because of the rapidly changing India that surrounds it. In the wake of the country’s breakneck, two-decade modernisation, the Amul girl stands out as a nostalgic link to a simpler past.

financial VOICE

Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012


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

World markets deeply concerned

Weekly Currencies As of Tuesday 24th July 2012 @ 3.30pm GBP - INR = 87.22

World markets are deeply concerned as the Eurozone is not showing any strong signs of stabilization, with the ten year Spanish government bonds rising to a fresh Euro-era high of 7.55%. Reports highlighted The FTSE Euro first 300 Index of top European shares opened down 0.8 %, led by weaker bank stocks and after losing 1.5% on Friday. The IMF said that the banking sector needed an injection of at least ₏40 billion to stabilise its finances and protect it against future shocks. Independent audits commissioned by the Spanish government put that figure at up to ₏62 billion. Spanish bonds slumped, with 10-year yields climbing to a euro-era high, after El Pais said six regions may ask the central government for financial assistance, increasing concern the nation will need additional aid. German government bonds outperformed all their euro-area peers, pushing yields to record lows. Italy’s 10-year yield reached a six-month high and Greek government bonds tumbled. In the States, Gross domestic product, the value of all

goods and services the nation produced, rose at a 1.4% annual rate after a 1.9% gain in the prior quarter, according to the median forecast of 70 economists surveyed by Bloomberg. Factory orders softened and new-home sales were little changed; other data may show this week. Greece’s creditors meet this week amid doubts that the country will fulfil its bailout commitments. German Vice Chancellor Philipp Roesler said he’s “very sceptical� that

European leaders will be able to rescue Greece. After euro finance ministers failed to prevent a fresh low for the single currency last week following the approval of a 100 billion-euro ($122 billion) aid package for Spain, the troika will be tasked with determining the fiscal position of the nation where the crisis began almost three years ago. Greece is seeking more help as efforts to cut its debt to 120% of gross domestic product by 2020 fall short. The Washington-based IMF

0 8 0 8

$ 0 4 5

has signalled to European officials that it will stop paying further rescue aid to Greece, bringing the country closer to insolvency in September; Der Spiegel magazine cited unidentified European Union officials as saying in this week’s edition. It’s “already clear� to the troika that Greece won’t reach the 120% target, Spiegel said. Missing the targets means Greece would need between 10 billion euros and 50 billion euros in additional aid, a potential outcome that the IMF and several unidentified euro- area states are not prepared to accept, Spiegel said. Five years of recession “bring about bitter memories of the Great Depression in the United States,� Samaras said yesterday in comments to visiting former U.S. President Bill Clinton in Athens. “This is exactly what we are going through in Greece. It is our version of the Great Depression.� With fears growing once again with Greece are we leading to the first exit of the Eurozone? Very likely and could be a painful/costly one for the Single Currency.

USD - INR = 56.18 EUR - INR = 67.91 GBP - USD = 1.55 GBP - EUR = 1.28 EUR - USD = 1.21 GBP - AED = 5.70 GBP - CAD = 1.58 GBP - NZD = 1.97 GBP - AUD = 1.51 GBP - ZAR = 13.17 GBP - HUF = 370.23 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 28th July 2012

US House votes to cut USD 650mn in military aid to Pakistan Washington: In a latest jab at Pakistan by the US, the House of Representatives has unanimously voted to cut American military aid to Islamabad by USD 650 million as Republicans sought to tamp down demands for deeper reductions. The amendment to cut the aid, which was proposed by Republican Congressman Ted Poe, passed on the floor in a voice vote. Poe had demanded a USD 1.3 billion cut, but settled for the 650 million cut. It will now go to Senate for approval. "Pakistan is the 'Benedict Arnold' to America in the war on terror. They are disloyal, deceptive and a danger to the United States," said

Ted Poe

Poe, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. "This so-called ally continues to take billions in US aid,

while funding the militants who attack us. And we've kept the money flowing. It's time we turn off the tap," Poe said. The State Department, however, refused to comment on the development, saying that since the legislative process was ongoing, he would not have any particular reaction. "We continue to consult with Congress, but I don't have any particular reaction to ongoing legislative debate," said State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell. "We continue to, obviously, support our Pakistani counterparts in key areas like counterterrorism, but I don't

have a particular reaction to ongoing legislative debate," Ventrell told reporters. "By continuing to provide aid to Pakistan, we are funding the enemy, endangering Americans and undermining our efforts in the region. We don't need to pay them to betray us; they are already doing it for free," said Poe. The passage of the amendment comes at a fragile time for relations between the US and Pakistan, which only recently overcame differences that led Pakistan closing down a critical supply route into Afghanistan that had cost the United States about USD 100 million in additional war costs.

Pak cleric: polio vaccine is just Thirteen Afghan police a cover for American spies ‘defect’ to Taliban

Islamabad: One of Pakistan's most influential clerics has renounced his support for polio immunisation, claiming that the programme is a cover for American spies. Sami ul-Haq, nicknamed the Father of the Taliban for his role in educating many of the Afghan students who rose up to capture Kabul in the 1990s, offered foreign governments a chilling ultimatum: end American drone strikes or leave children unprotected. He had been an unlikely ally of the World Health Organisation and Unicef. Earlier this year Haq administered polio drops to his grandson and urged followers to do the same. But now he says he cannot back the policy after it emerged that the CIA had used a fake hepatitis drive to hunt for Osama bin Laden last year. Shakil Afridi, the Pakistani doctor who organised the vaccination campaign, has been sentenced to 33 years in

prison and his actions caused a wave of paranoia about foreign aid workers. "The moral behind imposing a ban on the vaccination is not about whether it is unIslamic or not, but the moral comes from the case of Shakil Afridi," Haq said.. "The people who are involved in this campaign, many agencies are involved, and they are using it for their other causes." Pakistan is one of three countries where the disease remains endemic. Only 22 cases have been reported this year - compared with 59 in the same period in 2011 - and hopes were high that it could soon be declared polio free. However, hard-line clerics have long opposed what they suspect is a Western conspiracy against Muslims. As a result health workers carefully cultivated moderate leaders, who issued fatwas - or religious rulings - declaring vaccination to be in line with Islamic teaching.

Heart: An Afghan police commander and 12 junior officers have defected to the Taliban after poisoning seven comrades, government officials in the western province of Farah said on Tuesday. The commander, named only as Mirwais, was in charge of a checkpoint in the Bala Boluk district when he and his unit defected to the Taliban and handed over their equipment and weapons, including military vehicles. "He was a police commander for a checkpoint in Shewan village. He joined the Taliban with a Humvee, a Ranger (SUV), radios and 20 guns," said Abdul Rahman Zwandai, a spokesman for the Farah governor. The seven police were poisoned because they refused to join the rebellion, he said. All were taken to the Farah hospital and an investigation would be launched.

Farah, bordering Iran, is one of western Afghanistan's most insecure provinces, although the west is relatively secure compared to insurgent strongholds in the east and south. The defection was the first time that police had joined the Taliban and taken so much equipment with them, Zwandai said, and will worry Western backers looking to hand security to Afghan forces by the end of 2014. But national intelligence officials denied reports in some Afghan media that two members of the country's High Peace Council, which leads government efforts to reconcile with the Taliban, had also defected to the insurgency. "I'm not sure anyone from the HPC would have joined the Taliban," said National Directorate of Security deputy spokesman Shafiqullah Tahiri.

Gilani's son wins parliamentary seat vacated by him Lahore: Senior Pakistan People's Party leader Yousuf Raza Gilani's son won a byelection to the parliamentary seat in Punjab province that fell vacant when the former premier was disqualified by the Supreme Court last month. Gilani's son Abdul Qadir Gilani won in the family's traditional stronghold of Multan by bagging 64,628 votes, according to unofficial results flashed by the staterun media. His closest rival, Shaukat Bosan, an independent candidate backed by parties like the PML-N and Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf, secured 60,532 votes in the closely contested bypoll. Observers said the victory was significant as it came in the wake of the former premier's conviction and disqualification by the apex court for refusing to reopen graft cases against President Asif Ali Zardari as well as growing disenchantment with the PPP-led government at the centre following widespread allegations of corrup-

tion. However, they pointed out that Gilani's son had won by a margin of just over 4,000 votes - an indication of the support extended to Bosan by "anti-PPP forces" like the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf led by Imran Khan and the PML-N, which rules Punjab. "Today the people gave their verdict. They have given a befitting reply to those who had sent my father packing. The anti-democratic forces should now stop conspiring against the PPP as it still the most popular party of the country," Abdul Qadir Gilani said. During a three-week campaign, the Gilanis targeted the judiciary more than other political parties. Abdul Qadir said: "The people have made it clear that they did

not like its (judiciary's) decisions." PPP insiders were of the view that bypoll was more a contest between the PPP and the superior judiciary led by Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry and right wing parties. No other mainstream political party had fielded a candidate against Gilani's son but all of them, including the PML-N and religious parties like Jamaate-Islami, supported Bosan, the brother of senior Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf leader Sikandar Bosan. Bosan's election billboards and posters prominently features photos of Imran Khan, Nawaz Sharif, Punjab chief minister Shahbaz Sharif and Jamaat-e-Islami chief Munawar Hasan - evidence of the support he enjoyed from these leaders. "We are supporting Bosan as we want him and his brother to join the PML-N and contest on our party's platform," PML-N

spokesman Pervaiz Rashid said. Though Imran Khan announced that he would not forge an alliance with any other party, observers said the PML-N and Tehrik-eInsaf were virtually in an alliance for the bypoll. On the other hand, senior PPP leader Haider Zaman Qureshi said all anti-PPP forces had joined hands to defeat Gilani's son. "On top of that, the judiciary has a stake in this byelection. It is trying to ensure that the PPP loses this seat, otherwise there will be a curse all around on the judiciary for disqualifying Yousuf Raza Gilani," he said. Qureshi alleged this was the reason why Chief Justice Chaudhry had delayed the swearing in new Chief Election Commissioner Fakharuddin G Ebrahim and sent acting CEC Justice Shakirullah Jan, a serving judge of the apex court, to the constituency to oversee a "game plan" to defeat Abdul Qadir Gilani.

In Focus Barack Obama names new Afghan, Pakistan envoys Washington: US President Barack Obama has nominated two veteran diplomats to be the next ambassadors to Afghanistan and Pakistan. According to a White House statement, Obama named Richard Olson, a former ambassador to the UAE, to serve in Pakistan and James Cunningham, the number two at the US embassy in Kabul, to be the ambassador. "I am grateful that these talented and dedicated men and women have agreed to take on these important roles and devote their talents to serving the American people," Obama said in a statement announcing several new postings. According to the Telegraph, the two men will need confirmation by the Senate.

Pakistan: Gunmen wound WHO workers

Geneva: Gunmen in Pakistan shot and wounded a staff member of the World Health Organization (WHO) and an expatriate consultant working for the United Nations health agency. "At this point, there is no evidence to suggest that this was a deliberate or targeted attack against polio eradication efforts or WHO. WHO is grateful to the Pakistan authorities for launching an investigation into this event," the WHO said. On June 16, a Pakistani militant group threatened action against anyone conducting polio vaccinations in the region where it is based, saying the health care drive was a cover for U.S. spies.

Veena Malik's Ramzan show dropped after public outrage Karachi: A leading Pakistani television channel has decided to cancel a special show prepared for the holy month of Ramadan featuring controversial actor and model Veena Malik following a public outcry. Promos for Malik's new TV show, which featured her trying to look her religious best, had gone viral on the Internet. The trailers of the show, in which Malik was seen repenting for her sins, sparked an outcry across the country. The show was to be aired on 'Hero' channel, a part of the media group. The decision to drop the show was taken in the face of a mounting public criticism.

Taliban destroy 22 Nato trucks in Afghanistan

Kabul: The Taliban said they detonated a bomb on a fuel tanker and opened fire on other Nato supply trucks in a morning attack that destroyed 22 vehicles loaded with fuel and other goods for US-led coalition forces in Afghanistan. In western Afghanistan, a Nato helicopter crashed, injuring two troops serving with the US-led military coalition , Nato said. The helicopter went down at an undisclosed location in the relatively peaceful west. The Taliban said they attacked Nato supply trucks parked overnight in Samangan province in the north.

US Congress pushes for terrorist label on Haqqani network

Washington: US Congress has stepped up pressure on the Obama administration to designate the militant Haqqani network a terrorist organization. By voice vote, the House approved a bill that would require the Secretary of State to report to Congress on whether the Haqqani network meets the criteria to be designated a foreign terrorist organization and if not, to explain why. The Haqqani network, largely operating in eastern Afghanistan and northwest Pakistan, is affiliated with both the Taliban and Al-Qaida. According to US officials, the network represents one of the biggest threats to Afghanistan's stability. U.S. officials says the Haqqani network is believed to be using Pakistan as a rear base for attacks on coalition troops in Afghanistan.

2 injured in blast near Chinese consulate in Karachi

Karachi: Two persons, including a paramilitary personnel, were injured in a low-intensity blast near the Chinese consulate in Pakistani port city. A bomb was planted on a motorcycle parked near a building located adjacent to the consulate in Clifton area of Karachi. A car and two motorcycles were damaged by the blast.

OlyMPICS - world

Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Fauja Singh draws loudest cheers

Continued from page 16

Singh was born in 1911, and began running at 86 to keep himself occupied. He has since set several records for people of his age, running six London marathons, two Canada marathons and the New York marathon. Clearly a bit of a sensation for his achievements, his participation in the relay on Saturday was described by admirers and onlookers as "a moment of history". Singh, who carried the Olympics Torch in Athens eight years ago, now wants to carry it before the 2016 Olympics too, when he will be 105. Hundreds of Sikhs organised a 'langar' at 16 points along the torch relay route to celebrate Fauja Singh's efforts. The

torch from Greenwich to Waltham Forest was carried by several Olympians, including Nadia Comaneci, and Indian-origin individuals who have excelled in various fields, such as Kaushali Trivedi (23), Natasha Sinha (15), Priya Rajgor (20) and Dhrashti Shah (16). The relay's youngest and oldest (Fauja Singh) were among the 143 torch-bearers on Sunday. The youngest was Chester Chambers, 12, who was nominated for representing his classmates, fundraising and helping to develop an anti-bullying campaign. Saturday was the first day of the Olympics torch's seven-day tour of London in the final countdown to the Games.

Afghan treasures returned

Kabul: The British Armed Forces have returned historical arte facts dating back as far as the Bronze Age to Afghan museums after they were stolen and smuggled abroad. The precious cargo, weighing more than two tonnes and containing 843 objects, left RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire last week on board a C17 transport plane, and was transferred from the UK military base of Camp Bastion in Helmand province to Kabul by Hercules aircraft. David Cameron and President Karzai confirmed its safe arrival in the Afghan capital. Some of the items were looted from Afghanistan’s museums during civil wars, while others came from illegal excavations. They are thought to have been smuggled out of Afghanistan for sale on the international black market.

Mittal and family meet Indian Olympians at Hyde Park Continued from page 16 and so I hope that you'll be able to join me in a big round of applause as you welcome them to London. So the question is what is Mittal's Champion's Trust? I'll take a step back. In 2004 I attended the Athens Olympics, Vanisha, family and I- all came back and we were very excited for being apart of these wonderful games. But there was also this over riding sense of disappointment because we're such a populace nation yet we only had one medal for the Athens' games. My father-in-law then told me we must do something to help find an initiative that will help Indians get to the Games and so we started forming this trust and it started with this idea that lets fund the Olympic Squads and then it was lets find Olympic Squads that will require our help, lets identify talent and lets give them world class infrastructure and support, training, medical help, physical nutrition, physiotherapy, psychotherapy, give them the best in their class etc. We had the vision and now we have to execute it and completely by chance or fate a couple of weeks after we met with Mahesh Bhupati and he said that he wanted to be apart of something that would help build enthusiasm of India's youth towards the games. So we took, my father-in-law's experience of leaning with Sports authorities in India. We knew the challenges but also we needed a relationship in the network and we put those thing together and in 2005. So the obvious question is how

have we done since then? I am pleased to say that the answer is that we have done pretty well. In 2008 the country had it's first ever individual to win a gold at the Olympic games and that athlete came from the Champion's Trust. 3 year after, in the latest scoop of events we've had in the Commonwealth games our athletes have won in combined and excess of 30 medals for India at that time and now we come to 2012 and we are proud to say that out of 30 odd athletes that we support almost half, 15 or 16 have succeeded in qualifying for the Olympic Games and that is a 50% conversion ratio, so that it is something that we feel very proud of. It takes a lot of dedication and perseverance to get to the peak level and that's where they all are today. So we want to wish them the very best of luck and hope that they can perform to the best of their abilities. As you guys are walking around this evening you'll see them and give them a pat on their back or their shoulder and wish them well because I am sure they could do all the support they can get so when they go home they can make their families proud and the nation also." This was followed by a short note by Mahesh Bhupathi, who added, "I am going to speak on behalf of the athletes here. It's obvious that every athlete that when they grow up they think about playing for the olympics, they think about standing on that podium and I think that the age old problem in our country is we always say that we're brilliant people, strong but we always come home with

one or in the last olympics 3 medals. This my 5th olympics and as Amit rightly said- we went to Athens and we were a let down. I went to Atlanta and Sydney and Athens as well and when I came back it was the same story. We are a country of billion people but there are hardly anyone taking part in it. I don't think on behalf of the athletes we can thank Mr. Mittal and his family enough for taking the bull by the horns and actually doing something about it. It's very easy for people sit back and criticise but people have the ability to get up and do something about it. I don't think it's just us athletes that are very grateful but the whole nation is very proud and very indebted to you for making this a reality and opportunity for all of us." As the Olympic torch reaches London, Mittal's son, Aditya, 36, and Laksmi Mittal themselves are meant to carry it around London on Thursday, as it passes around from Camden to Westminster. Laksmi Mittal, 62, said: "When I think about parallels between myself and an Olympian, I believe that success in the world of business is underpinned by very similar principles of perseverance and hard work. "The torch relay is an excellent embodiment of all that the Olympic Games have come to symbolise - a celebration of the human spirit". He added: "Personally to me, it represents striving to be the best in whatever we do, never giving up despite the odds and a commitment to health and fitness. "I hope that by carrying the torch I will be representing many other people who share these ideals with me".


Britain admits torture during Mau Mau revolt London: The British government has acknowledged for the first time that Kenyans suffered torture and abuse at the hands of the colonial rulers during the Mau Mau rebellion of the 1950s. The official admission of wrongdoing by British colonial authorities came as three elderly Kenyans told the High Court that they had suffered a catalogue of torture, including castration, sexual assault and systematic beatings. Paulo Nzili, a herdsman now aged “about 83”, took the witness box to confirm a statement that he was

arrested by colonial officers and then castrated by a “Mr Dunman”. “In truth, I have never really recovered,” Mr Nzili said in his statement. “I led a desperate life. I was just waiting for death.” He said he found it difficult to interact with other people, and avoided children because they reminded him of those he could never have. Jane Muthoni, 73, said in her statement that she was arrested at the age of 15 and sexually assaulted with a soda bottle filled with hot water. “I was in so much pain I could not stop crying and scream-

ing.” Ms Muthoni said that she saw three other women being assaulted in the same way. “I had never seen anything so brutal and terrifying in my life.” Wambuga Wa Nyingi, 84, testified that he was brutally beaten in 1952. At one point, he said, he was hung upside down by his feet and water was poured over his face to simulate drowning. Addressing the crux of the legal case, he said: “I cannot say what the Government in London knew, but I suspect they knew exactly what was going on.” The hearing continues.

Join us as we celebrate Gurudev Shri Chitrabhanuji’s 90th birthday As we celebrate the 90th birthday of Gurudev Chitrabhanuji and honour his spiritual leadership, our heart is filled with gratitude and respect. Much can and should be said about Gurudev’s contribution to Jain communities especially in North America. His remarkable orator ship, his compassionate leadership, his inspirational teaching and his commitment to Jain dharma & Jains around the globe is second to none. Born on July 26, 1922 in a small town of Rajasthan, India, Gurudev spent the first five years of his monastic life in silence and meditation (when he was 20 years old). With this experience, he realized that the ultimate purpose of all life is to expand one's awareness and to liberate the consciousness from attachment and aversion. This enlightened spirit brought wisdom, and with lucid language and eloquent speech, he made a home within the hearts of millions all over India. After powerfully addressing the Second Spiritual Summit Conference in Geneva in 1970, he was invited to address the Third Spiritual Summit Conference, arranged by the Temple of Understanding series, at Harvard Divinity School, Cambridge, Massachusetts in October 1971.  This was his first trip to USA.  Inspired by his message, the Boston Globe in its write-up titled Jain Sect "A Saint" . . . said he was the hit speaker of the day . . . explaining basic tenets of his sects belief . . . and he does not try to convert anyone. As the West was healing from wounds left by Hiroshima, the Kennedy and Rev. Martin Luther King assassinations, struggling with involvement in the subjugation of Vietnam, etc. Gurudev saw his calling to spread the message of Ahimsa (non-violence). He addressed other leading institutions of learning, such as Princeton, Sarah Lawrence, Yale, Cornell and State University of New York. He also founded the Jain Meditation International Centre in New York City and became a spiritual guide to bring together all the Jain Centres in North America under JAINA. He is a world-renowned author of over twenty-six books which reflect his philosophy of world peace and nonviolence, emphasizing the need to appreciate the sanctity of ALL life and to build solidarity in the larger family of mankind. In recent years, he has been an avid advocate for animal rights and mindfulness in our consumption habits. He emphasizes the need for adopting a lifestyle free of the all animal products and pure vegetarian (plant based) diet. He also promotes elimination of animal based products (like milk, ghee, silk

etc.) from our temples and religious rituals. His message of pure vegetarianism (popularly known as veganism) has been largely ignored by the Jain adult community. In fact many traditions minded Jains have criticized him for being so vocal on Veganism. Gurudev has not been fazed. His passion for the pure vegetarian diet movement is so genuine that his heart cries out at the thought of the plight of speechless animals as they are exploited and tortured during milking life and ultimately slaughtered around the age of 6 years. Just recently someone asked Gurudev if he was aware of the opposition to him in the community for his insistence on Veganism. His reply was a couple of lines from the immortal song “MAITRI BHAV NU PAVITRA ZARNU”: May I always be there to show the path To the pathless wanderers of life. Yet, if they should not hearken to me, May I bide in patience. Gurudev has chosen to journey on a path not taken by many adult Jain scholars.  He guides us on the true path of Ahimsa and enlightens us on the ways of Jain Dharma. We admire him, we follow him and we love him. On this occasion, if you would like to send your message to Gurudev, please e-mail it to Dilipbhai V Shah (past president of JAINA) or mail the message to him at 1902 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103.  He is a Coordinator for the Committee for Gurudev’s Birthday Celebration.  He will compile all the messages in a book form and will present to Gurudev on his birth-day. LONG LIVE GURUDEV! Dr. Ramnik Mehta Devdaya Charitable Trust Web: Devdaya2004



Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Narendra Modi in Japan, condemns violence at Maruti's Manesar plant

Hamid Ansari, Jaswant Singh file nominations for vice presidential contest

Hamid Ansari of UPA and Jaswant Singh of NDA file their nominations for the vice presidential election. Ansari filed his nomination papers for being re-elected as vice president in the presence of senior United Progressive Alliance leaders, including Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi. The nominations were handed over to Lok Sabha Secretary General T. K. Viswanathan, who is returning officer for Aug 7 vice presidential polls. Among those present in parliament during the filing of the nomination were Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, Nationalist Congress Party's Sharad Pawar, Rashtriya Janata Dal's Lalu Prasad,

the situation. "I am sure that the Haryana government is capable enough to handle the issue and they will handle it," he said. Maruti Suzuki India (MSI), an arm of Suzuki Motor Corp, employs about 3,000 workers at its Manesar plant which produces some of the company's best selling models, such as Swift, Dzire, SX4 and A-Star. The company had earlier this year announced investment of Rs 40 billion to set up a new manufacturing facility in Gujarat in addition to its existing facilities at Manesar and Gurgaon in Haryana. There had been widespread speculation that Maruti might shift out of Haryana due to recurring violence but this was dismissed "as fiction" by company chairman RC Bhargava in New Delhi last week. MSI has been insisting that the investment in Gujarat was just an expansion and not shifting from Haryana.

Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi, who is on a visit to Japan to woo investors condemned violence at Maruti Suzuki's Manesar plant, stating such incidents should not happen anywhere in the world. Amid speculation that he would be pitching for more investment from Suzuki Motor Corp, parent of the Indian carmaker, Modi said, "Anywhere it should not happen. Human safety is the priority and I do feel (for) those who have lost their lives." A senior company executive was burnt alive and 100 others were injured, following which the company has declared a lockout at the plant. Speaking to reporters, he said, "It should not happen anywhere in the world, not only in India, or in Haryana or in Gujarat, it is not an issue where it has happened." However, he expressed confidence that the Haryana government can deal with


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Sinha- supporting Singh's candidature were submitted to Viswanathan. Soon after filing his nomination, Singh said elections to the high offices of President and vice-president are "historic moments". Besides JD (U) Sharad Yadav, who is the NDA Convernor, and BJP leader Arun Jaitley, Ananth Geete from Shiv Sena and Rattan Singh Ajnala, Harsimrat Kaur and Naresh Gujral from Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) were also present

Court dismisses N D Tiwari's plea to keep DNA report confidential The Delhi high court dismissed veteran Congress leader N D Tiwari's plea that the report of his DNA test be kept confidential till the conclusion of the hearing in a paternity suit filed by Rohit Shekhar, who claims to be his son. Justice Reva Khetrapal said the DNA report would be opened in court on July 27. Tiwari, 97, had also requested the court to allow in-camera proceedings. Rohit Shekhar, 32,

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Bahujan Samaj Party's Satish Misra, National Conference's Farooq Abdullah, DMK's T.R. Baalu and Lok Janshakti Party's Ram Vilas Paswan. Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi was also present. Jaswant Singh filed his nomination papers in the presence of opposition leaders including LK Advani, Sushma Swaraj and Sharad Yadav. Three sets of papers- one each by LK Advani, Sumitra Mahajan and Yashwant

on the occasion along with several BJP leaders. Though UPA candidate Hamid Ansari is set to enter the history books as the only person after S Radhakrishnan to get a second consecutive term as vice president, NDA has decided to field Singh as it does not want to give the ruling coalition a walkover. Singh, a former external affairs, finance and defence minister, has provided a semblance of seriousness to the contest. NDA was keen on putting up a fight against Ansari as it is unhappy with his conduct in the Rajya Sabha on December 29, last year when he abruptly adjourned the House while the Lokpal Bill debate was on.



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Delhi high court. Tiwari said in his plea: "Direct all concerned to comply with the directions passed by the Supreme Court, and let the DNA report completely sealed and confidential till conclusion of the entire trial or alternatively at reasonable appropriate stage in the suit." Referring to one of the Supreme Court orders, he said the apex court had made it clear that the DNA report would remain

confidential till the conclusion of "reasonable, appropriate and proportionate trial". "Pass appropriate directions to conduct entire trial and all proceedings relating to the civil suit in-camera," his plea said. He said Rohit and his mother were "leaving no stone unturned to get the report unsealed and make it public to attract undue media attention without completion of trial".

Rahul Gandhi gets 'proactive', will be Congress no. 2

Surjeet Singh gets `500,000 from Punjab govt

Rahul Gandhi will be number two in the Congress after Sonia Gandhi, the party said, ending feverish speculation after the NehruGandhi scion and general secretary declared that he was ready for a "more proactive role in the party and the government". Rahul Gandhi said the decision had been taken and the timing was left to the leadership. "I will play more proactive role in the party and the government. The decision has been taken, the timing is up to the leadership," Rahul Gandhi said after voting for presidential election in the parliament. The remark evoked almost immediate confirmation about his future role from party media department chairman Janardan Dwivedi who said the young leader was set to play number two position in the party. "In future, his role would be after Congress president. That is clear," Dwivedi said. It also set off speculation that Rahul Gandhi, 42, could be projected as the party's prime ministerial candidate in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls. This is the first time that Rahul Gandhi has spoken about the possibility of joining the govern-

Having spent over 30 years of his life in Pakistani jails on spying charges, Punjab resident Surjeet Singh was given financial assistance of `500,000 by the state government. Surjeet, who was released late last month, was given the cheque by Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, a spokesperson for the Chief Minister's Office said. Badal also assured Surjeet that his son Kulwinder would be given a regular government job based on his qualifications. Surjeet's family depends on the meagre income they get from agriculture. During the meeting at the chief minister's residence here, Badal felicitated Surjeet for rendering great service to the nation and assured him that the state government was committed for extending all possible help for the rehabilitation of his family within the legal framework. Though Surjeet had languished in Pakistani jails for the cause of the nation, the union government made no efforts for his rehabilitation, Badal said. Despite the fact that he had spent his youth in jail, the union government had not bothered to help his family, he agreed. Expressing gratitude to the chief minister.

had in 2008 filed the suit claiming to be Tiwari's biological son. Hyderabad-based Centre for DNA Fingerprinting and Diagnostics recently submitted DNA reports of Tiwari, Rohit and his mother Ujjwala Sharma in court. Tiwari had on May 29 furnished his blood sample for the DNA test at his residence in Dehradun following orders of the Supreme Court and the

ment or taking up a bigger role in the Congress as the party prepares for a string of state elections and the Lok Sabha elections. Interestingly, the big announcement came on the day former finance minister Pranab Mukherjee, and till a few days ago the government and party's chief strategist, was contesting the presidential election well on his way to the Rashtrapati Bhavan. On Wednesday, Sonia Gandhi said it was up to her son to decide on taking up a bigger role. There has been growing clamour in the Congress over the need for the young leader to take a bigger role. Law Minister Salman Khurshid had said earlier this month that the party was waiting for a new ideological direction from Rahul Gandhi and had only "seen cameos of his thought and ideas". Welcoming Rahul Gandhi's statement, party leader Digvijay Singh told reporters: "I have been saying this for the past two years...Rahul should play a larger role all over the country."


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012


Bollywood’s original superstar Rajesh Khanna is no more From the dizzying heights of fame to quiet shadows behind the arc lights, Rajesh Khanna's life had a theatrical sweep, almost like one of his films. Bollywood's original superstar - simply the phenomenon to some - died in Mumbai last week, leaving behind memories cast in celluloid of that famous crooked smile and head tilt. He was only 69. In an era long before this age of instant connect of mobile phones and internet, Rajesh Khanna was the man who sparked a frenzy never seen before and never since, not even by the likes of Amitabh Bachchan. His very name spelt magic in the 1970s. He sparked hysteria, particularly amongst his legions of women fans, who would line the road for a glimpse, chant his name, cover his car with lipstick marks and even write him letters in blood. They got married to his photograph, cut their finger, let the blood flow and applied 'sindoor'. Truly, "O mere di ke chain"! Kaka, as he was popularly known, was one of the highest paid actors of his time, his record of consecutive solo super hits still unbroken. Who can forget the years between 1970-1979 when he starred in mega hits like "Safar", "Kati Patang", "Sachaa Jhutha", "Aan Milo Sajna", "Anand", "Amar Prem" and "Mere Jeevan Saathi." Glory and fame galore came his way with the two 1969 films - "Aradhana" and "Do Raaste" - where he teamed up with two of his best co-stars, Sharmila Tagore and Mumtaz, respectively. Both the films were super hits. Hindi film's first superstar was born. Between "Aradhana" in 1969 and "Prem Kahani" in 1975, Rajesh enjoyed god-like status.

It was all about charisma - a certain something that went beyond the art of acting. He had that unique way of delivering a dialogue, of crinkling his eyes and that interesting head tilt that were all his own and designed to get fans swooning. Describing the charm of Rajesh Khanna, Amitabh once said: "I got famous purely because I was working with Rajesh Khanna in 'Anand'. People asked me questions like, 'How is he to look at? What does he do?'" He became the heartthrob of the nation, singing timeless melodies like "Mere Sapnon Ki Rani..." in "Aradhana", "Zindagi Ek Safar" in "Andaaz" or "Yeh Shaam Mastani" in "Kati Patang". Singer

Kishore Kumar and composer R.D. Burman were amongst his closest friends. In his four-decade career, he appeared in about 160 films, of which 106 had him as the solo lead hero and 22 were two hero projects. Rajesh proved his mettle in offbeat films too. He teamed up with Hrishikesh Mukherjee for the critically acclaimed "Bawarchi" and "Namak Haram". The quintessential romantic also did the intense "Avishkar", directed by Basu Bhattacharya. But then age caught up and the star began fading away. He moved to television and played the main lead in two serials - "Ittefaque" and "Apne Paraye" during 2001-02 and also featured in "Raghukul Reet Sada Chali Aayi" between 2008-09. The decline to B-grade films was

inevitable. There was also the sorry "Wafa" with Laila Khan, who was found murdered this July. He dabbled in politics, being Congress MP from the New Delhi constituency from 1991-1996. Like the Hollywood legends of yore, the personal life also had a larger than life dimension. He fell in love with Dimple Kapadia, who was only 16 and whose first film "Bobby" was yet to release. She was 15 years younger to him but the pull was strong and they got married after a whirlwind romance in 1973. It was the stuff of tabloid headlines. They had two daughters Twinkle and Rinke. The marriage lasted only 11 years. It was a lonely life for Rajesh after that. He disappeared from the headlines and appeared to be a shadow of his former self in his rare public appearances. But the family came together in his last days. His estranged wife was the one who took care of him during his illness. Son-in-law Akshay Kumar was also a great comfort. Grandson Aarav lights Rajesh Khanna's pyre: The last rites of Rajesh Khanna were performed by his grandson Aarav at the Vile Parle crematorium with family, friends and fans bidding the superstar a tearful adieu. The actor's nine-year-old grandson thrust a torch into the pyre with the help of his actor-father Akshay Kumar, who is married to Rajesh Khanna's elder daughter Twinkle. Thousands, including the superstar's fans, friends, family and film fraternity members gathered to say a tearful goodbye to Rajesh Khanna, signifying the loss of a great star.

● Born Jatin Khanna in Amritsar on Dec 29, 1942 ● Adopted and raised by a wealthy couple, relatives of his biological parents, who lived in Mumbai ● Attended St Sebastian’s Goan High School in Girgaon, where he studied with actor Jeetendra. Both also studied in Kishinchand Chellaram College, where Khanna was active in theatre. ● In his struggling years in early 1960s, often seen doing rounds of producers in his MG sports car ● In 1965, won an all-India talent contest with 10,000 participants, beating Vinod Mehra to the title. ● His first released film was Chetan Anand’s “Aakhri Khat” (1966) where his name appears as Rajesh Khanna Aradhana (1969) was his first super hit. ● Between 1969 and 1971, he gave 15 consecutive box-office winners, an unbroken record, including “Sachaa Jhutha,” “Safar,” “Kati Patang,” “Anand,” “Haathi Mere Saathi” (Bollywood’s biggest grosser till then) ● Married 16-year-old Bobby star, Dimple Kapadia, in 1973. They separated in 1982 ● At the premiere of “Namak Haram” (1973), a 31-yr-old Khanna told director Hrishikesh Mukherjee that his time was up and Amitabh was the superstar of tomorrow ● Gave his last block-buster, “Avtaar,” in 1983 ● In his last major role, featured in Bgrade film “Wafaa” (2008), opposite murdered actress Laila Khan ● Won three Filmfare best actor awards, nominated 14 times. Got Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award in 2005.

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Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Hazare gives ultimatum on Jan Lokpal bill

Reversing his earlier decision, Anna Hazare said he would join his team members on an indefinite fast if the government does not agree to bring Jan Lokpal Bill in parliament within four days of their fast due to begin Wednesday. "They (Team Anna members) suggested I don't fast. I will give four days to the government to agree to our demand and if they don't, I will sit on an indefinite fast from July 29," Hazare told reporters in Delhi. "Even if I die, I will die for my country," said the social activist, who arrived in Delhi to join his team members beginning their indefinite fast. Hazare said that their agitation was against the rampant corruption in the government. "The government has deceived again and again and maligned us by making a forged CD against us," he added. Earlier, Hazare had decid-

ed not to go on fast due to his health problems. The team will sit on an indefinite fast at Delhi's Jantar Mantar on Wednesday, the day when new president Pranab Mukherjee will be sworn-in. Arvind Kejriwal will be leading the agitation this time, Team Anna said. Alleging that the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government is trying to divide his Team Anna, Hazare earlier said at Ralegan Siddhi,

Maharastra that he would not hold any further talks and continue with indefinite protest from July 25 for a strong Lokpal bill. In a threepage letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Hazare said he would take part in the protests from July 25 and also in yoga guru Baba Ramdev's Aug 9 protest being held in the national capital. Hazare said Law Minister Salman Khurshid met him June 23 and assured him that the UPA government was ready to bring the Lokpal bill as suggested by the civil society. "Khurshid told me that the government was ready to bring all junior and senior government officials under the Lokpal and also bring the CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation) under the ambit of the Lokpal," he said. Addressing media persons at his hometown Ralegan Siddhi in Maharashtra,

Hazare also released the letter he wrote to Manmohan Singh, in which he denied the claim of the Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office V Narayanasamy that he was helping the government evolve a consensus on Lokpal. Hazare said that Narayanasamy, in a letter to him, had openly written that "I (Anna) have helped the government in matters related to Lokpal". "I have not helped government in anyway and had clearly told Khurshid about our demands. I doubt if the intention behind sending Khurshid was to show that I am talking to government without telling rest of the members," Hazare said. He said he was asked by Khurshid to keep the meeting secret and that it would be discussed with rest of the team members after talking to the prime minister and Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

Pranab Mukherjee NCP skips Manmohan’s dinner sweeps presidential poll Continued from page 1 some ill-timed pressure tactics by Congress ally Mamata Banerjee that yielded unexpected results. Those who know Mukherjee say his sense of the Constitution, politics and grasp of governance make him his own man who cannot be taken for granted in the Rashtrapati Bhavan. Mukherjee made the point, saying he would try and fulfill expectations to “defend, preserve and protect” the Constitution. Mukherjee is now set to be India’s 13th president after scoring a big win – aided by cross-voting from BJP legislators in Karnataka – over opposition nominee P A Sangma, polling a vote value of 7,13,763 (65% of all votes or about 69.3% of all valid votes in the electoral college), against his challenger’s vote value of 3,15,987. May move court: Sangma Defiant in defeat, Sangma isn't giving up just yet. He suggested he could go to court over what he

called a "partisan" presidential election but he would decide on this later. Moments before counting was to close, the former Lok Sabha speaker made a raft of charges against the UPA, accusing it of offering baits and even issuing threats to ensure support for Mukherjee. He also demanded a code of conduct for presidential election. "We must have this for the sake of strengthening our vast democracy. There is a compelling need for it," Sangma said. "They (the UPA) persuaded disparate political parties commanding major sections of the presidential electoral college by economic and other packages as well as inducements, threats and promises," Sangma said. "Economic packages have been given in a big way. Why was Bihar given Rs 570 billion and Uttar Pradesh Rs 270 billion? There were threats. Be it Mayawati, Mulayam Singh Yadav and chief ministers of Nagaland and Sikkim - (the UPA said) ‘there are cases against you, so vote for us'," he alleged.

The NCP kept the Congress guessing on quitting the Union cabinet as party chief Sharad Pawar and party leader Praful Patel skipped the dinner hosted by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday evening. Although, the sulking ally had made it clear that it will not rock the UPA boat and continue its support "till the end". At stake is the NCP's demand to remove Prithviraj Chavan as Chief Minister of Maharashtra. Pawar was not among the ministers present at the PM's dinner on Monday night for outgoing president, Pratibha Patil. But through the day, there were enough indications that Pawar was ready for the eventual possibility of pulling out of UPA government and supporting from outside. In a symbolic move, Pawar drove personally to President elect Pranab Mukherjee's house. An NCP meeting was held on Monday and the party deferred its decision on future ties with the UPA for by 48 hours. The NCP Working Committee met to discuss its options in the wake of party chief Sharad Pawar's communication to the Congress leadership last week expressing a desire to quit the government along

with another minister Praful Patel on issues like better functioning of the coalition. At the end of the hour-long deliberations, Patel said the discussions in the party would continue on issues like continuing in the government and a final decision would be taken "no later than" Wednesday. He said the party has decided to further consult leaders in Maharashtra, where NCP is a major partner in the Congress-led coalition government, and have issues over the functioning of the government there. The state NCP leaders could not be in Delhi due to the ongoing session of the Assembly. "As far as the UPA is concerned, we have made it clear we are part of the UPA and will continue to support the government and the UPA till the very end," Patel said to a volley of questions on whether the party still continued to be part of the government. On Thursday after polling in the President's election, Pawar sent a missive to the Prime Minister wanting to quit the government. The party said it had a number of issues over the way the UPA government functioned and denied that number 2 status for Pawar in the Cabinet.

Olympics spirit grips London Continued from page 1 Dubbed 'The Missile', Magnussen is the 100m freestyle world champion and earlier this year swam that event's fastest ever time without the aid of the now-banned, drag-reducing 'super suits'. Other athletics stars include Russian pole vault queen Yelena Isinbayeva, Kenya's David Rudisha in the 800m and Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele, the 5,000m and 10,000m champion in Beijing. South Africa's Oscar Pistorius, known as 'Blade Runner' because he runs with carbon fibre prosthetic run-

ning blades, will make history as the first double amputee athlete to compete at an Olympics. At the velodrome, Bradley Wiggins, fresh from his historic Tour de France triumph, will fire up home hopes. Zara Phillips, the granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth, adds a little royal lustre to the equestrian at Greenwich. Federer, having won a record-equalling seventh Wimbledon title, returns to the All England Club in south-west London looking to add singles gold to the doubles he won with Swiss compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka four years ago.

His rivals will be Djokovic and Andy Murray but there will be no defending champion Rafael Nadal, who pulled out to rest his ongoing knee problems. The United States will be comfortable favourites in the men's basketball with a Dream Team boasting LeBron James and Kobe Bryant but not the injured Dwyane Wade or Derrick Rose. The build-up to the Games has been relatively troublefree, although organisers had to summon 3,500 troops for the showpiece after private security firm G4S admitted they couldn't provide a full contingent of guards.

Amid gripes about security and transport, colourful London mayor Boris Johnson hit out at critics of the Olympics, saying the city was about to stage the greatest show on Earth. However, one subject the British enjoy discussing - the weather - continues to be at the forefront. Many athletes and officials have arrived and moved to the games village, while the opening ceremony has been slashed by half an hour. Big Ben will chime 40 times in three minutes on Friday as part of a mass bell-ringing event marking the start of the Olympics.

In Focus Captain Lakshmi Sahgal passes away Captain Lakshmi Sehgal, (97) who was part of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose's Indian National Army, died following a brief illness. She was admitted in hospital on July 19 after she suffered a heart attack at her residence in Civil Lines area of Kanpur. She was kept on life support system. She was very active during the Independence movement and had commanded the 'Rani of Jhansi Regiment' of the INA formed by Bose. A doctor by profession, Sehgal was working as a medical practitioner and a social worker. She was awarded Padma Vibhushan in 1998.

Assam violence claims 32 lives

Ethnic violencey escalated in more areas of western Assam at Kokrajhar with 11 fresh casualties in clashes and police firing, forcing the Centre to rush 1,500 more paramilitary personnel to control the unrest that has claimed 32 lives so far. As new areas came under the grip of the ongoing clashes that began last week between illegal immigrants and Bodos, the state government sounded alert in Sonitpur, Baska, Kamrup (rural) and Darrang districts. Nearly one lakh people have been rendered homeless in Kokrajhar, Chirang, Dhubri, Bongaigaon, Udalguri and Sonitpur and most them are sheltered in relief camps.Train services to and from the north east have also been severely hit and more than 20,000 passengers have been stranded at different places following the violence. Altogether 21 trains, including the Guwahatibound Rajdhani Express, have been halted at different places along the route leaving more than 20,000 passengers stranded.

Three held for selling off Sardar Patel’s land

Three persons have been arrested by Mahemdabad police in the case pertaining to the sale of land that belonged to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. The instance of a 90-yearold farmer sharing Sardar’s name, having sold off a 1.75 acre plot at Gadva village of Mahemdabad block in Kheda for `2.5 lakh has brought embarrassment to the administration. Investigations have revealed that the person posing as Vallabhbhai Jhaverbhai Patel from Singarva village was in fact one Hirabhai Dabhi. He is still at large. The three arrested have been identified as Bhupendra Dabhi, his father Desaibhai Dabhi and one Fatabhai Chauhan.

Jayalalithaa sacks senior minister Sengottaiyan

In a surprise move, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa decided to drop senior minister KA Sengottaiyan and induct Thoppu ND Venkatachalam into her cabinet. According to a communication issued by Raj Bhavan, Tamil Nadu Governor K Rosaiah has accepted the recommendation of Jayalalithaa to drop Minister for Revenue Sengottaiyan from the council of ministers and to appoint Venkatachalam as the new revenue minister. The swearing-in ceremony of Venkatachalam representing the Perundurai Assembly constituency will be held on Thursday morning at Raj Bhavan. The dropping of Sengottaiyan is the first major decision taken by Jayalalithaa soon after her return from Kodanadu in Nilgirs district in Tamil Nadu.

Prime accused in Guwahati molestation case arrested

Amarjyoti Kalita, prime accused in the sensational Guwahati molestation case who was evading arrest for a fortnight, was arrested from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. Amarjyoti Kalita was arrested by local police from Lanka area of Varanasi, IG, Law and Order (Varanasi) B P Singh said. With arrest, 14 of the seventeen identified in the incident on the Guwahati-Shillong road on the night of July nine have been taken into custody. The IG said that Superintendent of Police, Guwahati had informed the state police about Kalita's presence in Varanasi after which he was arrested near Banaras Hindu University. The identity of Kalita was cross-checked to confirm that the right person was arrested, he said adding that the accused carried reward of Rs. one lakh on his arrest.


Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012


Raksha Bandhan celebrates strong bond between brothers and sisters Raksha Bandhan is a festival which celebrates the relationship between brothers and sisters. It is also called Rakhi Purnima in some parts of India. The festival is observed by Hindus and Sikhs. The main ceremony involves the tying of a rakhi (sacred thread) by a sister on her brother's wrist. This symbolizes the sister's love and prayers for her brother's well-being, and the brother's lifelong vow to protect her. Raksha-Bandhan is on 2nd Aug this year. The festival falls on the full moon day (Shravan Poornima) of the Shravan month of the Hindu calendar. It grew in popularity after Rani Karnavati, the widowed queen of Chittor, sent a rakhi to the Mughal emperor Humayun when she required his help. A rakhi, or holy thread, comes in many colors and designs. As the sister ties the rakhi on her brother’s wrist and offers

sweets to him, the brother in return offers gift to his sister and vows to look after her. The brother usually presents his sister with an envelope filled with money however, other presents such as saris and clothing can be

given. The brother and sister traditionally feed one another sweets. These sweets include anything from Jalebi, Kaju Katli, and Burfi. Traditions & Customs: On the day of Rakhi festival, both the sister and brother pray to

God for the well being of each other. Sisters perform 'aarti' and put tilak on the forehead of her brother. In return, brothers make promise to take care of his sister under all circumstances. Usually, brothers gift something to the sister to mark the occasion. The mirth that surrounds the festival is unsurpassed. Amidst the merriment, the rituals are also followed with great devotion. Preparation of Rakhi Festival: Generally, the fancy Rakhis and delicious sweets are prepared long before the Shravana Purnima. According to the Indian tradition, the family members get ready for the rituals early in the morning. They take a bath to purify mind and body before starting any preparations. Sisters prepare the puja thali which consists of roli, tilak, Rakhi threads, rice grains, aggarbattis (incense sticks), diyas and sweets.

Garba and filmi dialogue in Sanskrit Purvi Apurva Shah At the Eklavya Sanskrit Academy there is no DJ playing music to perform salsa or samba. Instead, the club was vibrating with Sanskrit songs. Yes, you have not entered the night club but it is a very innovative club where the members interact, dance, sing, perform garba, drama and debate only in Sanskrit language. Here even bhangda is sung in Sanskrit. All the cultural activities have to be done in Sanskrit. The main aim of this club based in Ahmedabad is to preserve the Sanskrit language. It is a fact that you will know the language better if you talk, sing, interact and debate in that particular language. And there are many Sanskrit lovers who are dying to speak in this language but they do not find anybody who can talk in this language. So this club provides a platform where one can meet Sanskrit fraternity and they have a great time talking and also sometimes joking in Sanskrit. In fact the people who are not that good with the language also pick up fast by getting a chance to chat in Sanskrit. There are more than 500 members, consisting of youth and highly educated people who meet once in a month and every time they meet they “do something different in Sanskrit.” The members have experimented in forming various Sanskrit Garbas, they have translated Gujarati garbas into Sanskrit and they have also formed new Sanskrit Garbas where they them-

Now, hear the filmi dialogues in Sanskrit…..

SHOLAY Kaalia, tav ki bhavisyasi ? Mahoday maya tav lavan khaditam Idani golikan khad (Ab tera kya hoga, Kaalia? Sardar maine aapka Namak khaya hai To ab goli kha) DEEWAR Mam samipe yanam asti dhanam asti bhavanam asti sarvam asti Bhavatah samipe kim asti? Mam samipe mata asti (Mere paas gadi hai bunglow hai paisa hai…. Tumhare paas kya hai? Mere paas ma hai…..)

selves script it and give rhythm and tune to it. “Tvam vina shyam aham ekaki bhavami raskridaye aagmyatam…” is a translation of “Tara vina shyam mane ekaldu na lage…raaas ramva ne vahalo aveje.” Such Sanskrit garba gives chance to enjoy garba as well as practice Sanskrit language. “The conventional Sanskrit teaching method will be boring, but if the activities relating to festivals are practiced in Sanskrit, it will always keep the interest intact. And moreover one can expand Sanskrit vocabulary in a playful way,” says Mihir Upadhya, founder and director of Eklavya Sanskrit Academy. Upadhya recently received Gaurav Purushkar award from Gujarat government for doing outstanding work in the field of Sanskrit. He was honoured by Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi. He is the one who founded and initiated such innovative works in

Sanskrit. He also started a Sanskrit magazine which is running successfully for the last 4 years. This is done on no- profit-no- loss basis and done as community service to preserve and spread the essence of our Indian language. When some youngsters asked him what is the market value of Sanskrit, he replied, “Aapni Ma ki koi kimat karta hai kya? Sanskrit is heart of India. We do not learn this language for commercial benefits; we learn it because it belongs to us. It is our duty to know and spread Sanskrit.” In order to make Sanskrit interesting to youngsters, even filmy dialogues are translated in Sanskrit. The famous dialogues of well-known movies are performed in Sanskrit on stage. Even shlok, Shivmahima, Shivpujan, Vishnupujan, Matrupujan are also interpreted and practiced regularly in Sanskrit by the club members.

Shravan Mahina, the traditional Hindu calendar followed in North India, is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Special prayers and rituals are performed in Shiva temples and in sacred places associated with Lord Shiva. This year, Shravan Mahina is from July 4 to August 2 in traditional Hindu calendar followed in North India. In Maharashtra, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, Shravan Mahina begins on July 20, 2012 and ends on August 17. The month of Shravana is the fifth month of the Hindu calendar, beginning from Chaitra and is considered the holiest month of the year. Almost all the days of Shravan Mahina are considered auspicious. The Shravan Mahina brings the blessings of Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu. This month is beneficial for those who believe in the glory of Lord Shiva. During this month, Bili patra are offered to the deity and the Bilwastakam mantra is chanted. ‘Shiv’ means welfare. Lord Shiva is considered as the prime Lord in the Panchdev Pujan. Pushpadant says that though he is the unborn, by his powers he exalted to the position of creator, nurturer and destroyer of mankind. He is also the reason behind everyone’s existence. On Purnima or full moon day, or during the course of the month, the star 'Shravan' rules the sky; hence the month is called Shravan. This month is spread out with innumerable religious festivals and ceremonies and almost all the days of this month are auspicious. Shravan is considered the holiest month of the year. Each Monday of this month, known as Shravana Somvar, is a special day in Shiva temples where the linga or the idol is bathed in holy water, day and night. Devotees pile the linga high with Bel leaves and flowers and fast till sunset. The nandadeep (24 hour lamp) burns steadily in the temples. The legend says that when the churning of oceans - Samudra Manthan - took place in the month of Shravan, fourteen different types of rubies came out. Thirteen of these were distributed amongst the demons, except Halahal (poison). Lord Shiva drank the Halahal and stored it in his throat. Hence the name Neelkantha (meaning blue throat) is attributed to

Shiva. To reduce the strong effect of poison, Lord Shiva wore the crescent moon on his head. All the Gods, thereafter started offering the Ganges water to Lord Shiva to lessen the effect of poison. Since, this happened in the month of Shravan, Shiva devotees offer the Ganges water in this month.

Things to do during Shravan month • Wear Rudraksh, and also use a Rudraksh mala for Japa. • Offer Lord Shiva Bhibhuti and place some on your forehead. • Make offerings of Bel leaves, Panchamrut (milk, yoghurt, clarified butter, honey and jaggery) on Shiva Ling. • Recite Shiv Chalisa and Aarti. • Chant Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra. • Fasting on Mondays. Girls who fast on all Mondays of Shravan get a good husband. It is considered highly auspicious to wear a rudraksha in Shravan month. All Mondays are devoted to the worship of Shiva as this day is sacred to Lord Shiva. The belief is that in Shravan month, offering milk to Lord Shiva earns a lot of punya. Shravan Somvar Vrat (Monday fasting on Shravan month) Though all Mondays can be observed as vrat, there are special Mondays when it is much more emphasized. According to Skandha Purana, Mondays of the month Karthik (mid Nov to mid Dec) this vrata

is observed. Way of observing: After taking bath, pray to Lord Shiva. Anointing the Lord with panchamritam and other pleasant substances, hail the Lord offering bel leaves. During the day don't take any solid food. You can take milk, buttermilk, fruit juice, or fruits. After 6'o clock in the evening pray to Lord Shiva and break your fast and eat normal solid food (avoid onions and garlic). Your fasting should start from 12 in the midnight and ends in the evening on Monday. It is believed that one who fasts on all Mondays of Shravan will get his wishes fulfilled. Significance of Shravan days: Each day in the month of Shravan has a special significance and has its own ritual. Monday: is the day of Lord Shiva worship. Tuesday: Gauri is worshipped in every home, by women for the good health of their family. Wednesday: dedicated to Vithala, a form of Vishnu or Krishna. Thursday: also days for worshipping Buddh & Guru. Friday: every home worships Lakshmi & Tulsi. Saturday: for Saturn (Shani). It is also known as Shravan Saturdays, with the object of obtaining wealth. These days are known as Sampat Sanivara (wealth Saturdays). Sundays: meant for worshipping the Sun god. Sun worship was general in the Vedic period and even now it is so. In Shravan, every Sunday the Sun is worshipped without fail.

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asian voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

Purvi’s Travel BaG By Purvi Apurva Shah

Small and unspoilt hill resort, Mirik, is a perfect place to leave all the heat and dust of the plains. An untouched beauty, Mirik enjoys the reputation of being the youngest hillstation of India. Mirik in West Bengal is not known to everyone. But it is time that this beautiful spot should be given its true recognition as a beautiful natural spot for spending one’s holidays. The young hill resort is not far from Siliguri. There is peace and tranquility all around Mirik. The lovely lake at Mirik is ensconced by wild flowers and dense forests of Japanica trees. The tropical estate has wonderful walks to offer to its visitors in its miles and miles of tea plantations. The hill station is blessed with some of the best tea gardens and Thurbo tea Estate, is the most famous among them, which is 2 km from Mirik. One can visit the factory, where the picked tea leaves are dried and processed into the form. But one should take

considered ideal for boating. One can find many paddle boat to enjoy the view and the calmness of this place. Lakeside has tall pine trees on one side and beautiful flower garden on the other side. Years ago, the flower garden used to be a polo

Bokar Monastery

A young girl in a salwar kameez, not yet out of her teens, stands before a group of peers and denounces jeans and other western wear as provocative. Others join in, explaining how wearing such clothes is an invitation to lewd comments from boys. In UP's Muzaffarnagar, the Khaps seem to have had their way. These young girls were speaking at meetings organised recently to convince other girls in this area to follow the Taliban-like diktats and dress codes that village elders, all men, have imposed. So these evangelists narrated personal experiences of how they had "invited" misbehaviour from men by wearing "tight jeans." One even argued, "If Sonia Gandhi can come from Italy and wear Indian clothing, why should we Indian girls not do that.

The Khap leaders, universally criticised for imposing regressive diktats that fetter women, seem to have done a thorough of convincing these young spokespersons. "So many rapes happening nowadays, girls are teased only because they wear such clothes," said one. Another said, "We have all decided that why me, no girl in the village will wear jeans." Their tones were as firm as the manner in which their

dupattas were drawn across their shoulders. Surrounding the girls, who sat on the ground, the village men sat on plastic chairs and nodded approvingly. The Khap panchayats have also said no to use of mobile phones by women. These allegedly promote love affairs. These girls are happy to support that diktat too. "What use is a mobile phone. We shall use them when we have to travel outside," said one.

Husband adopts wife’s name

ground for British Tea estate managers. The ridge of pine trees and the garden is also connected by an arched bridge called the Rainbow Bridge. A 3.5 km long stretch of narrow road encircles the lake. This is used for pony riding around the lake. Another hard to miss

Tea Garden

prior permission from the manager. Apart from its tea plantations, there are the orchards replete with oranges, lovely smell wafts out of cardamom plantations. Mirik is the largest supplier of oranges in West Bengal and the famous Mirik Busty Orange Garden really a worth to visit. Sumendu Lake is a created lake. The manmade lake is surrounded by a ridge. Floating fountain in its centre attracts the attention of all. People visit the lake to boat in its waters. Many visitors and locals even fish in the lake waters. Near to it is the temple dedicated to Singha Devi. Though not for swimming, Sumendu lake is

Tourists can go for treks to Sandakphu, Kurseong, Namsu and Phalut. One can visit Mirik at any point of the year. Weather is pleasant here. People flying to the place can land at Bagdora. Bagdora Airport is 55 Km

After Khaps, girls in Uttar Pradesh now say no to jeans

by attraction is a very small segment of the lake, which is situated at the other side of the main road. It contains a type of fish called Rohu or Labeo Rohita, a freshwater species. One can get home made breads to feed the fishes. Mirik has its own helipad. Samendu Lake can be clearly seen from this point.

Don Bosco Church

from Mirik. New Jalpiaguri Railway Station caters to traffic to Mirik. Good road network connects Mirik to Siliguri, Darjeeling, Bagdogra and Kurseong. Small and big hotels, tourist lodges, tourist cottages and tourist hostels are good places to accommodate tourists at Mirik. Sit by it and take in the astounding view, lug your picnic hamper along and work up an appetite by taking a paddleboat ride. On the west of the lake, a ten-minute walk away, are three Hindu temples dedicated to Hanuman, Kalamata (the Goddess of time) and Shiva. The colourful Bokar Gompa monastery of the Mahayana Buddhists sits high on a hill and watches over the town. One can take pony rides to see the sights in Mirik. And if you want a whiff of the Himalayan village life then take the 8-hour trek to Kurseong. Mirik, like Kurseong, hasn't been overrun by tourists and in this lies its USP.

On June 9, Claude Peter Gonsalves (32) of Ahmedabad wed his childhood sweetheart Rebecca Manuel Sudan. While Rebecca was in two minds on assuming her husband's name or surname, Claude gave her a surprise by assuming her name instead to become Claude Rebecca Gonsalves! "A girl is expected to embrace change after marriage. She is expected to change her home, leave her parents and adjust in a new house and new family members. She is also expected to change her name, an identity she has carried all her early life. I changed my Enjoy this delicious Farali Dhokla with chutney during Upvaas (Fasting days). Serves 2 people, 20 min. Ingredients: One cup of samo flour ( moraiyo flour), 2 tablespoon of sabudana, 1/2 cup of yogurt, 1/2 cup of water, 1 green chili finely chopped, 1 teaspoon ENO’s fruit salt / soda, 1 tablespoon oil, salt to taste. For tempering: two tablespoon of oil, 1 teaspoon of cumin seed (jeera), 1 teaspoon of sesame seeds (til), 1 green chili cut into pieces. To Garnish: two tablespoon of cilantro (coriander) leaves finely chopped. Method: In a big bowl, mix together samo powder, sabudana, yogurt and water. Mix well and make a smooth batter, it should be of thick consistency, keep aside for 5 to 6 hours. Add green chili and salt, mix well. Heat steamer or pressure cook-

name to make her feel welcome and cherished," says Claude, a telecommunications executive.

Rebecca confesses her heart flipped when she first saw her husband's new name on Facebook! "I had been dilly dallying whether I should change my maiden name to

Rebecca Claude Gonsalves. I am very close to my father and somehow my heart felt heavy at the change. I think Claude sensed this dilemma and did the most unbelievable thing," says Rebecca, who works as assistant professor at an Ahmedabad college. Rebecca says that Claude was flooded with reactions ranging from the typical 'sonow-you-havebecome-joru-ka-ghulam' to encouraging responses. "But Claude took it all in his stride and sent a smiley to all just saying he felt like doing this for me," says Rebecca.

Farali Dhokla

er with about 1 1/2 inches of water. Bring it to boil. Grease a plate; make sure it should fit in the steamer or cooker. Once water comes to boil, add ENO or soda and 1 tablespoon of oil to batter and mix well. The batter will foam up. Pour batter into plates fill only half way up, steam for about 15 minutes or till done. Turn off the heat and remove dhokla plate and let is cool for 10 minutes. Heat a non stick pan on medium high heat, add 2 tablespoon of oil. Add cumin seeds wait until seeds crackle. Add sesame seeds and green chilies and stir for a minute.

Remove and pour it over dhoklas. Cut dhokla into square pieces and garnish with chopped cilantro. Enjoy Farali Dhokla with cilantro chutney. Health benefits: It boosts energy on fasting days. In recipe of Farali Pattice in last edition, use arrowroot flour (Singoda) instead of bread.

HealtH Watch

Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012


Stress can be good for immune system? Stress is bad for youyou've heard it a thousand times. But it can be good for your immune system, says a study. Short-term stress, the fight-or-flight response, a mobilisation of bodily resources lasting minutes or hours in response to immediate threats -stimulates immune activity, said Firdaus Dhabhar, associate professor of psychiatry and behavioural sciences and member of the Stanford University Institute for Immunity, Transplantation, and Infection. And that's a

onto the skin and other tissues, according to a university statement. This large-scale migration of immune cells, which took place over two hours, was comparable to the mustering of troops in a crisis, Dhabhar said. He and colleagues had previously shown that a similar immune-cell redistribution in patients experiencing the short-term stress of surgery predicts enhanced postoperative recovery. Investigators were able to show that the massive redistribution of immune cells throughout

good thing. The immune system is crucial for wound healing and preventing or fighting infection, and both wounds and infections are common risks during chases, escapes and combat, the Journal of Psychoneuroendocrinolog y reported. Working with colleagues at Stanford and two other universities, Dhabhar showed that subjecting lab rats to mild stress caused a massive mobilization of several key types of immune cells into the bloodstream and then

the body was orchestrated by three hormones released by the adrenal glands, in different amounts and at different times, in response to the stress-inducing event. These hormones are the brain's call-to-arms to the rest of the body, Dhabhar said. "Mother Nature gave us the fight-or-flight stress response to help us, not to kill us," said Dhabhar, who has been conducting experiments for well over a decade on the effects of the major stress hormones on the immune system. The findings paint a clearer picture of exactly how the mind influences immune activity. "An impala's immune system has no way of knowing that a lion is lurking in the grass and is about to pounce, but its brain does," Dhabhar added.

To Our Readers We are publishing these items in good faith, kindly consult your Doctor before you try to implement it. We do not hold any responsibility for its efficacy...

Need a quick health check? Turn to the mirror to know what your face reveals about your health. Your face is much more than the visage of your personality to the world. It's your best asset, your fortune, your primary outlet of nonverbal expression and with facial recognition softwares, it's your password as well. Or in Oscar Wilde's words; a man's face is his autobiography and a woman's, her work of fiction. But research has shown that your face is also a good barometer of your health and what's wrong with it. While facial diagnosis is not an absolute science, the condition of your skin speaks a lot about what's going on inside, both physically and emotionally. Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners have for centuries used facial analysis as a diagnostic tool by matching facial areas and features with organs and emotional states. So the stubborn pimple that chooses to erupt on the same spot of your cheek is perhaps pointing at a graver health issue that needs attention. Here is how you can read

your face to adopt a healthier lifestyle: Forehead: Your vast forehead speaks for several organs such as the heart, the bladder and the small intestine network. So be prepared to flaunt all the wear and tear of excessive partying or your sleepless nights. A reddened, flaky complexion of your forehead could point to a digestive tract that's crying for some lubrication while congestion hints at poor detoxification. But if you have got both, your digestive apparatus is screaming out to you. First off, go easy on the partying and make sleep a priority. Avoid oily foods and processed foods till you get the shine back. Eyebrows: The window to your liver lies between the eyebrows. Expect too much alcohol and bingeing on other toxins to make their appearance here. Ancient Chinese medicine considers the liver to be directly linked with anger. So if you find yourself breaking into a tight scowl too often, you may want to cool off your anger issues. A stronger right brow says that you are more likely to

express anger outwardly. However, a stronger left brow means that your tendency is to suppress your anger. Mouth: This one's a no-brainer. Your mouth obviously correlates to your stomach. While the lips are linked to the stomach and intestine, the surrounding area at the sides that pass on to the jowls are connected to the colon. Spots or discolouration dotted around your lips could hence indicate poor bowel movements, bloating or even a poor appetite. This may also be a reminder to check for any food allergies that you may have never learnt of. Gums, if bloody, point to an acidic tummy, while dry, chapped lips mean dehydration. Cracks or sores in particular, call out for a spleen that's not cared for. Vitamin B and iron supplements may make matters better. Cheeks: The mildest of rashes on your cheeks could indicate that your

It is proven that good night’s sleep is important for numerous health benefits. But want to know what is the best sleep position to get a good night’s rest? The best position is to sleep on your back, according to a new study. It prevents neck and back pain, reduces acid reflux and minimizes wrinkles. Sleeping on your back makes it easy for your head, neck and spine to maintain a neutral position. However, people with severe snoring or sleep apnea should avoid sleeping on their back.

This position is recommended for people with neck pain along with a cervical roll or pillow. The next best position is the

their left side to increase blood flow to the baby. Side sleeping keeps your spine elongated preventing back soreness.

side position. This position is great for your overall health. It prevents neck and back pain, reduces acid reflux and reduces snoring. This position is ideal for women who are pregnant. Women in late pregnancy should sleep on

Side-sleeping, however, tends to constrict the shoulder and neck muscles due to the weight of the head on the arm all night. Side-sleepers should do a shoulder stretch to stretch the back of the shoulders and prevent soreness. Side-sleeping also might

body is starved of oxygen as your cheeks are wired to your respiratory system. The solution is to make your breathing fuller and deeper by working out or doing yoga. If you smoke regularly, watch out for broken capillaries, discolouration, fine lines or congestion in this spot. Likewise for those down with cold or flu. If your redness aggravates easily, you may be overdoing your dose of stimulants such as coffee, colas and alcohol. Chin: Your chin mirrors the kidneys and the bladder. Keep an eye out for any hormonal imbalance as it will show up here. Congestion around the chin point to your kidneys working overtime, most likely due to you putting yourself through extreme amounts of stress. Chin indicates adrenal fatigue. Heavy stress causes your adrenals that sit above the kidneys to release cortisol.

Want a good night’s rest? Sleep on your back


worsen facial wrinkles and increase breast sagging over time. This sleep position is recommended for people with back pain with a pillow under your knees to relieve strain on the lumbar spine. The worst position to sleep in is on your stomach. The stomach position eases snoring but is bad for your neck and back. Stomachsleeping makes it difficult to maintain a neutral position with your spine. It puts pressure on joints and muscles, which can irritate nerves and lead to pain, numbness and tingling.


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We offer comprehensive services in the areas of assisted reproduction (including IVF, ICSI, egg donation and egg sharing), gynaecology, and male infertility. We have a flexible schedule, including appointments in the evenings & weekends. Director: Dr Geetha Venkat MD, FRCOG 43 Devonshire Street, London, W1G 7AL



Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

CB Live is the only Gujarati live programme in UK on Television This week in CB Live, Shri Tushar Joshi, a well known broadcaster, compere and promoter of cultural activities based in Ahmedabad will discuss the need of a well researched, edited documentary for individuals, organisations or businesses, to record our unique personal stories, traditions and heritage. Prof Atul Mehta, Clinical Director, Lysosomal Storage Disorders Unit, Dept of Haematology, Royal Free Hospital and wife Dr Kokilaben, a GP will be discussing health related issues with CB.

If you do not have a SKY, go to and watch CB Live on TVU Player Channel 75203

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 enery and enthusiasm, this is a favourable time to make fresh starts. Personal relationships may be more intense.

ARIES Mar 21 - Apr 20

7pm to 8pm Every Thursday

CB LIVE Every Thursday on MATV (SKY 793) 7pm to 8pm For more information email: or call Alka Shah on 07944 151 893

Letter Writers' Seminar Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar have always valued and cherished the contributions made by our letter writers. To help in further interactions amongst each other and with our team, we are planning a Letter Writers' Seminar in August 2012. To avoid clashes with major events, it will be held on a Saturday between 3-6pm, and we had suggested the dates 4th August, 11th August or 18th August. After much deliberation and taking into account correspondence from various contributors, we have decided to organise the above seminar on Saturday 18th August. We would also extend this invitation to our regular columnists and sincerely hope their participation. If you are interested in attending the seminar, please register your name at or via post to our offices.

Coming Events l Nehru Centre, 8 South Audley Street. London W1K 1HF - A special event for Olympics on 26th July 2012- Vidhalal's Kathak performance, 6:30 pm l Free summer cultural classes for children and adults, 27 July-31August, 11am-1pm Shree Jalaram Mandir. Contact: 0208 578 8088 l Akademi's upcoming performances of Bells as part of the Mayor of London's SHOWTIME festival of free, outdoor arts events. l Victoria Park, Finchley. Ballard Lane, North Finchley N3 2NE 9pm , 25th July FREE -Lewisham Big Screen, Blackheath Common, All saints Drive, Blackheath SE3 0TY - 9.45pm 2nd August FREE l Turnham Green Park, Chiswick, W4 4JF 9pm 4th August FREE l Shree Khadsupa Kachhol Parivar (UK) has arranged a friendly family gathering on Sunday 29July 2012, 12-5pm. St Chad's Parish Centre, Coleman Road, Leicester. Contact: Sureshbhai 0116 2835080 l Ananda Utsav in London, 17-19 August, 9am6pm, SKLPC, Northolt, UN5 6RE, Contact: A K Basra 07977201226 During the torch relay in Harrow on Wednesday 25 July 2012, Navin shah AM for Brent and Harrow together with local community members will be demonstrating out side the Siddhashram Shakti International Centre (Hindu Temple) against the sponsorship of Dow Chemical between 9:3010:30am. The protesters are NOT against the London Olympic games but, it is staged to highlight the plight of the Bhopal victims at the hands of Dow....... Navin recently passed a motion at the London Assembly condemning Dow and has become a committed supporter of the Justice for Bhopal Victims Group. Navin will also be at the Bhopal Medical Appeal demonstration at the main gates of the Olympic Park on Friday.



Who is the director of the film Bol Bachchan? The correct answer is b. Rohit Shetty

The FIVE winners of the competition are Dev Bhatt, Rajani Patel, DR Radia, Parul Bathia and Anjana Shah. We request the winners to send their postal address to aveditorial@abplgroup without fail by Monday 30th July 2012.

Editor: CB Patel Associate Editor: Rupanjana Dutta Tel: 020 7749 4098 - Email: Senior News Editor: Dhiren Katwa Freelance Correspondent: Rudy Otter Chief Operating Officer: Liji George Tel: 020 7749 4013 Email: Chief Financial Officer: Surendra Patel Tel: 020 7749 4093 Mobile: 07875 229 220 Email: Accounts Executive: Akshay Desai Tel: 020 7749 4087 Email: Business Manager: Alka Shah Tel: 020 7749 4002 - Mobile: 07944 151 893 Email: Advertising Manager: Kishor Parmar Tel: 020 7749 4095 - Mobile: 07875 229 088 Email: Business Development Managers: Rovin J George - Email: Tel: 020 7749 4097 - Mobile: 07875 229 219 Nihir Shah - Email: Tel: 020 7749 4089 - Mobile: 07875 229 111 Urja Patel - Email: Design and Layout: Harish Dahya & Ajay Kumar Tel: 020 7749 4086 Email: Customer Service: Ragini Nayak Tel: 020 7749 4080 - Email: (BPO) AB Publication (India) Pvt. Ltd. 207 Shalibhadra Complex, Opp. Jain Derasar, Nr. Nehru Nagar Circle, Ambawadi, Ahmedabad Tel/Fax: +91 79 2646 6061 Bureau Chief: Nilesh Parmar (M) +919426636912 Email: Consultant (P.R): Kamlesh Amin Tel: +91 922 710 4308 Email: Consulting Editor (BPO): Bhupatbhai Parekh, Ahmedabad, Gujarat Tel: +91 79 2630 4142 Mumbai: Kanti Bhatt, Hemraj Shah (Jumbo Advertiser) Horizon Advertising & Marketing: 205 Shalibhadra Complex, Opp. Jain Derasar, Nr. Nehru Nagar Circle, Ambawadi, Ahmedabad Tel / Fax: +91 79 2646 5960 (M) +91 9913346487 Email: Neeta Patel, (Advertising Manager) (M) +91 98255 11702 International Advertisement Representative: Jain Group(South India) Tel: +91 44 42041122/3/4 Fax: +91 44 25362973 Mumbai: +91 222471 4122 Email:

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TAURUS Apr 21 - May 21 You have been going through major changes in your relationships. Your ideas about love and partnership are changing daily. As with most things, your health waxes and wanes. You might even find the energy to keep up with your projected gym schedule. Try to make time for relaxation. GEMINI May 22 - June 22 Jupiter, the planet of abundance, is transiting your Solar 1st house. You have plenty of romantic options. Communications are still garbled - be careful in important meetings. At work you will experience a relaxed atmosphere and this will help you to get on with everyone around you.

CANCER Jun 22 - Jul 22 At home, be at your diplomatic best and try not to tread on anyone's toes. Passions will run from hot to cold, and relationships may suffer. Even the most strong-willed Cancerians will be more open to compromise to keep the peace. Plan your spending and set sensible budgets. All things considered, your health should be robust. LEO Jul 23 - Aug 23 As social life is likely to gather a pleasant momentum throughout this week, this is bound to present a better prospect, not only for striking up new friendships but also romantic encounters. This is going to be one of those times when insignificant events give rise to unexpected developments especially regarding work and health. VIRGO Aug 24 - Sep 23 Much enthusiasm goes into professional ambitions right now, but you need to be your own boss in many ways. You will be determined to place your lifestyle on a foundation of greater security. Taking a broad perspective on the prevailing cosmic pattern, far-reaching change begins to gather momentum. LIBRA Sep 24 - Oct 23 You will feel confident as the week begins. The cosmic energies are decidedly invigorating at the moment. If you are taking a holiday, so much the better ! Not only do you have Venus putting a favourable emphasis on travel but, with Mars you can be sure of deriving the utmost pleasure from adventures and excursions. SCORPIO Oct 24- Nov 22 Whether you’re single or attached you’ll have to go through a lot, as deep psychological transformations are taking place in all types of relationships. Don’t be afraid to experiment, trust your hunches, go with your gut feeling. Solutions to minor problems should be considered very carefully. SAGITTARIUS Nov 23 - Dec 21 The accent’s very much on relationships. The opening up of a more diverse social life is a point in favour of romantic attachments, if this is what you want. You will achieve a lot more, especially when you're motivated by your own desires. The general pattern of things continues on a progressive and buoyant theme. CAPRICORN Dec 22 - Jan 20 Although the very practical affairs of life continue to be highlighted, this does not mean that there will be all work and no play. In fact, you will be very much in demand socially. From a financial point of view take stock of where you’re at rather than to launch any ambitious new business plan. AQUARIUS Jan 21 - Feb 19

It’s all about communications, as they take centre stage this week. Regarding love there will be a struggle between devotion and freedom. You need to feel completely consumed by the passion of your lover, and yet you need personal space to explore your own thing.

PISCES Feb 20 - Mar 20 It seems that the winds of change begin to gather momentum and put a strong focus on domestic and family matters. The outlook remains optimistic as developments point the way forward and bring you a sense of real achievement. Don't be afraid to act if your instinct tells you it's time for change.

Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012



Lanka crush India, square series Sri Lanka beat India by 9 wickets after Sri Lanka dismissed India for 138 in the second of the five-match One Day International (ODI) series in Hambantota. Thisara Perera and Angelo Mathews took three wickets each and Lasith Malinga took the significant wicket of the opener Gautam Gambhir. The Sri Lankans chasing 139 wrapped up the match in less than 20 overs with 181 balls remaining with both openers Upul Tharanga and Tillakaratne Dilshan scoring half centuries. Thisara Perera has been named the Man of the Match. The Series is now leveled at 1-1. India won the first ODI at Hambantota by 21 runs. Earlier, Pacemen Thisara Perera and Angelo Mathews each bagged three wickets as Sri Lanka dismissed India for 138 in the second one-day international.Gautam Gambhir top-scored with a 96-ball 65 for India, who won the opening one-dayer by 21 runs on Saturday. He was the last man out, caught behind off fast bowler Lasith Malinga after hitting four boundaries.

Asian Voice - Saturday 28th July 2012

SA thrash England by innings

Dale Steyn claimed five for 56 to help bowl South Africa to a comprehensive innings and 12-run victory over England before tea on the fifth day of the first cricket test at The Oval on Monday. South Africa took a 1-0 lead in the three-match series, fuelling their hopes of winning the series and leapfrogging England as the number one team in the world rankings. Steyn wrapped up England's second innings with a fiery burst with the second new ball of three for eight in his four-over spell as England were bowled out for 240, replying to the Proteas' only innings of 637 for two declared. In bright, sunny conditions, Ian Bell tried to salvage a draw with his painstaking innings of 55 in 220 balls, his slowest test 50, but, like his team mates, he could not stay in. It was a crushing win for South Africa, especially after England closed day one on 267 for three but then failed to capitalise. Hashim Amla plundered a national record 311 not out in more than 13 hours at the crease in his team's huge total. Jacques Kallis also made 182 not out and skipper Graeme Smith 131 in his hundredth test. South Africa were a little nervy having managed just the wicket of

Ravi Bopara (22) in the morning session as Bell and then Matt Prior (40) dug in. Prior's dismissal, however, started off a flurry of wickets. Fast bowler Steyn, ranked number one in the world, had started the demolition job in the first hour of the day by removing Bopara, who deflected a bottom edge on to his stumps while trying to cut a short and wide delivery. Despite a couple of let-offs for Bell, when AB de Villiers failed to hold on to a nick off leg-spinner Imran Tahir on 20 and a run out chance on 28, he batted courageously. Prior's wicket halted their promising stand of 86 as England crashed from 203 for five. Prior gave away his wicket, trying to sweep Tahir when the shot was not on. Instead he managed a faint edge to a leg-break from around the wicket and Kallis took his 183rd test catch at slip. Steyn then claimed the prized wicket of Bell with his second delivery with the new ball, as he edged to the reliable Kallis at second slip. He added the scalps of Stuart Broad, caught behind after a review, and Graeme Swann. The final wicket went down when Tahir trapped last man James Anderson lbw. The second test is in Leeds from August 2 and the third match at Lord's starts on August 16.

England's grip on No1 spot slips after resounding defeat

The fact that England lost was overshadowed by the nature of the loss - England's team were outclassed, losing by an innings and 12 runs. In the match, South Africa's team took 20 wickets, compared to England's 2. England now have to make up a 1-0 deficit in only two matches, and so their position as No1 in the world is being threatened by South Africa. The loss was not expected, England having won the first day with a century from Alastair Cook. However, South Africa went on to win the next four days. Dale Steyn, dubbed the world's best bowler inflicted serious damage on the England side, with five for 56. Amongst the various disappointments in the match were Bell and Bopara being bowled out, and Graeme Swan's worst performance, with nought for 151. England's bowlers were also outmatched compared to the South Africans', by a factor of ten. Batsmen need to think about team before themselves: England's batsmen were simply not patient enough in the test match. Maintaining the defence

was paramount, and yet they did not reduce the amount of their strokes-playing. When playing in the situations they were in, the batsmen should have waited for a bowler to lose concentration and give an easy ball. However, the captain did not make an example for everyone to follow, and the outcome was set from there. In particular, Kevin Pietersen let down the England side, as he missed a straight bowl, too busy trying to get runs. Overall South Africa's side were better than England's, particularly Hashim Amla and Jacques Kallis, some of the best players in the world. They contributed largely to South Africa's win, whereas the England team contributed to their own loss. Yesterday at the test: The numerous, painstaking bowling plans for Duminy, Rudolph, and the rest of the South African team were dumped. Meanwhile, AB de Villiers is in danger of becoming a specialist wicket keeper. Olympic spirit has made a presence in the England team, as they lend a hand of generosity to South Africa.

Asian Voice  

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