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First & Foremost Asian Weekly in Europe

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Vol 46 Issue 47

7th April to 13th April 2018

3 soldiers, 13 terrorists killed in Kashmir encounters

Let noble thoughts come to us from every side 80p

MODI RETURNS TO LONDON Modi to host live televised interactive conversation with select members of London’s Indian diaspora

Rupanjana Dutta

Full story on page 26

9 killed as Dalit protests across India turn violent

Protesters blocking train in Nagpur

Responding to the softening of provisions of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act by the Supreme Court, Dalits took to the streets in different

parts of India on Monday, leaving nine dead, several injured, and massive destruction of public and private property. Continued on page 26

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has planned to engage with the Indian diaspora during his visit to the UK. The event, called Bharat Ki Baat, Sabke Saath, will be held at a venue in Westminster on 18 April, during his visit to the UK for the Commonweal Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) and will be telecast live. It promises to be a unique live interactive conversation. Speculations are that it may be held at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre, a conference centre in London, which was the venue for the Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas in 2014. However it will not be as big as the 2015 community event in Wembley Stadium that had 60,000 people attending. Sources reveal that this event will only allow about 1,500 invitees and these attendees will be

selected by lottery after they register on a website created for the event. The last date for registration is on the website is 4 April. Vijay Chauthaiwale, in-charge of the BJP Foreign Affairs Department, wrote on Twitter last evening, “A unique niche event is being planned in London on April 18.Titled as #BharatKiBaatSabkeSaath, it will be a one of its kind live interactive conversation with P r i m e M i n i s t e r Narendra Modi." The Indian ladies UK, a women’s group that has over 26,000 members in Britain, will be organising a flashmob to wel-

come Modi to UK. The last time he visited London, 3500 ‘Indian Ladies’ from the same group crocheted a 20ft long colourful blanket representing the unity and diversity of India, and a few representatives from the group had handed it over to Modi in person. Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar will also bring out a special issue/supplement to celebrate Modi’s visit to the UK. Also, a joint “mission” has called out all British Indians to join in for a march on April 18 to the Parliament. 'Mission: Support PM Modi Oppose Anti India Forces' asks to all “unite” and walk in honour of the Prime Minister. Continued on page 16


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Harrow couple 'one of first' double Indian weddings celebrate 50 years of marriage An elderly Indian couple who took part in ‘one of the first’ double weddings in the UK will celebrate their golden wedding anniversary this year. Mr Subhash Gohil, 72, and Mrs Ratanbai Gohil, 68, from Harrow were married in a twin civil ceremony at Oldham registry office on March 28 1968. Ratanbai married alongside her sister, Manjula who was wedded to Valabh Parmar. The two couples then held a traditional Indian wedding two months later on May 12 1968. Both ceremonies were reported in

the Oldham Chronicle. They were married 50 years ago on 29th March. Subhash and Ratanbai have four children, Rupesh, Sanjay, Anita and Bhavisha, as well as six grandchildren. The couple met at a wedding in 1967

and after liking each other, Subhash went to his elders to arrange a meeting. They could only communicate using red telephone boxes. Mr Gohil says the secret to a long marriage is lots of talking. Subhash, who ran his own business is now retired, and Ratanbai, who helped with the family business is also a housewife. Their second eldest son, Sanjay said: “What makes this unusual is that it was one of the first Indian double weddings in the UK at the time.” The Gohils and Parmars keep in touch and visit each other regularly.

one address in the city last month as part of a nationwide campaign encouraging hate and violence. But residents of Leicester's St Matthew’s estate decided to repudiate the malice. The letter had called for a 'Punish a Muslim Day' on April 3. Instead residents decided to gather for a 'Love Our Community Day' - and demonstrated their neighbourly spirit on Tuesday. So a situation that

began with threats and fear, ended with face painting, crafts and contented chatter. Mothers and children walked door-to-door handing out daffodils to passers-by. Other people were encouraged to get involved as smiling community support officers walked beside them for reassurance. They did not want anybody to feel frightened; nobody was going to let hate win.

Subhash and Ratanbai

Letters call for 'Punish a Muslim Day', but community responds with flowers When the letters calling for violence against Muslims dropped through letterboxes there were some in Leicester who were initially fearful. But the message sent back on Tuesday was clear to those who would spread hate in the city - there is no place for it here. The 'Punish a Muslim Day' letter contained a list of violent acts alongside a number of reward ‘points’ for carrying them out. It was sent to at least

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Trio charged with manslaughter and arson over Leicester explosion Three men accused During a 50minute hearing, of manslaughter in Kurd, wearing a grey connection with the explosion in jumper, and Hassan Leicester which and Ali, wearing blue killed five people jumpers, only spoke have appeared in to confirm their court to deny the names and to deny all charges. seven alleged Arkan Ali, 37, offences. Hawkar Hassan, 32, Appearing at and Aram Kurd, 33, Leicester Crown were arrested after Court via video-link the blast destroyed a from HMP Woodhill, Polish supermarket in Milton Keynes, the and two-storey flat Clockwise top left: Sean, Mary and Shane three men were told Ragoobeer, Leah Beth Reek, above it on Sunday, their trial is likely to Viktorija Ijevleva February 25. be heard under a High killed in the incident in Mary Ragoobeer, 46, Court Judge. Hinckley Road. her sons Shane, 18, and Ali, of Drake Close, Each of the accused Sean, 17, who lived in the Oldham, Hassan, of no has been charged with five flat, Leah Beth Reek, 18, fixed abode and Kurd, of counts of manslaughter. who was Shane's girlHillary Place, Leicester, They also pleaded not were remanded into cusfriend, and Viktorija guilty to separate counts tody by Judge Philip Head Ijevleva, 22, who is of arson being reckless as believed to have been until a further hearing on to endanger life and fraud working in the shop at the August 31 at the same by false representation. time of the blast, were all court.

Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe's husband 'disappointed' with Boris Johnson The husband of jailed British mother Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe says he is "disappointed in the failure of Boris Johnson's efforts" two years on from her arrest in Iran. Richard Ratcliffe claims it has become a "test of endurance" to free

his wife. Mrs ZaghariRatcliffe, 39, is serving a five-year jail sentence after being convicted of spying charges. Since being arrested at Tehran Airport on April 3, 2016, Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe has denied the charges against her. The BritishIranian dual citizen main-

tains she was in Iran to introduce her three-yearold daughter Gabriella to her parents. Mr Johnson was previously accused of risking an additional five years being added to her sentence when he told a parliamentary committee that she had been in Iran to train journalists.

Gang jailed as investigators hunt £10m of their illegal gains

A hunt by investigators have started for a £10 million drug smuggling gang's hidden illegal profits. The gang, which includes two men from Leicestershire, were part of a gang which imported huge amounts of cocaine and heroin hidden in shipments of furniture and clothes. The gang were jailed for a combined total of 115 years. Jagdish Patel, 51, from Syston, was found guilty of conspiracy to import cocaine and heroin and conspiracy to supply cocaine and heroin. He was sentenced to 25 years. Talib Hussain, 59, from Birmingham, was found guilty of conspiracy to import cocaine and heroin and conspiracy to supply cocaine and heroin and was sentenced to 24 years. Ravindra Modha, 55, from Thurmaston, was found guilty of conspiracy to import cocaine and was sentenced to 16 years. Paulvinder Randhawa, 47, from Wembley, admitted conspiracy to supply heroin at the start of the trial and was sentenced to 18 years. Ayaz Hussain, 28, of from Wembley, admitted conspiracy to supply

Top: Talib Hussain and Jagdish Patel Bottom: Paulvinder Randhawa, Ravindra Modha and Ayaz Hussain

cocaine during the trial and was sentenced to 12and-a-half years. The Crown Prosecution Service and Leicestershire Police have now both confirmed they have started to search for the gang's assets, including properties, cash, vehicles and luxury goods. The court can order to seize the assets it believes were paid for in cash from illegal activities. The court will then calculate the value of their “criminal benefit” and will set a financial sum which the gang must pay within a timeframe. If the amount is not paid, the prison sen-

tence will increase and they would still be obliged to make the payments. Andrew Baxter, deputy chief crown prosecutor at CPS East Midlands, said after the men were sentenced, “This was a significant smuggling operation leading to a substantial police investigation, and a great deal of close working between the police and the CPS ensured that the strongest possible case was built. Drug smuggling is far from a victimless crime, and the CPS will now use its powers under the Proceeds of Crime Act to ensure that these offenders do not profit


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COMMENTS

Negotiating a diplomatic minefield Tensions between the US-led NATO coalition of the willing and Russia are rising to boiling point. US expulsions of Russian diplomats and the closure of Russia’s consulate in Seattle have met with an opposite response: a similar number of American diplomats expelled and the closure of the US consulate in St Petersburg. This has been followed by a brusque statement from the US State Department threatening further retaliatory measures against Russia. With John Bolton as National Security Advisor in the Trump administration, a formal US declaration of war is a possible next step.

At the State Department’s daily briefing, the spokesperson stated amid visible disbelief that US expulsions were justified but that Russia’s were not. A retired State Department official John Graham expressed deep alarm at the ascending cycle of escalation, as did Joe Laurie, a former reporter of the Wall Street Journal, who blamed the West for the crisis arising from the poisoning in Salisbury of a Russian double agent and his daughter, which the reporter opined lacked credible evidence. He said it was a geopolitical game – gamble, if you like, that could lead to disaster. The Austrian Foreign Minister told how she was badgered by US and UK diplomats to condemn Russia for attempting to kill its former agent and his daughter in Salisbury, which she refused to do.. Such facts, including the widespread demonstrations in Ghana on the opening of a US military base in the country, were conspicuously absent in the Indian print media, ever dependent on syndicated columns from the toxic New York Times. Former Indian ambassador G.Parthasarathy’s edit-page article in Business Line was a welcome antidote to the poison. Emphasizing the need to safeguard India’s strategic autonomy within the paradigm of its relationships with the US, EU, Russia and China. China’s goals, truculently outlined by President Xi Jinping pointed to hegemonic regional aspirations, serving notice to the world that this would be the era of China’s tryst with history as an emergent great power. Parthasarathy rightly ascribed the present SinoRussian alignment to the inept policies of the United States, whose pressures had brought these once antagonists into a wary embrace. India had wisely kept faith

with its ‘privileged strategic partnership’ with Russia, underwritten by close defence cooperation. The Sukhoi-30 MKI aircraft are the mainstay of the Indian Air Force; the supersonic BrahMos cruise missiles and other critical weapon systems for India’s armed forces, including the 10year lease of a Russian nuclear submarine, the latest Russian tanks, and stealth frigates are integral to India’s military capability. There is close institutional and ministerial interaction between New Delhi and Moscow. India and Russia are in the final stage of negotiation for the supply of five Russian cutting edge S-400 Air Defence Systems capable of intercepting and destroying airborne threats at a distance of 250 miles, that can simultaneously engage six targets. Each S-400 comprises tracking and search radar systems, eight launchers, 112 missiles and command and control vehicles. India’s Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will shortly be making her first visit to Moscow, where she is also expected to discuss the acquisition of a jointly conceived Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft [FGFA], and participate in the international security conference. Meanwhile three Russian ministers in charge of economic development, agriculture and transportation, were meeting their Indian counterparts in New Delhi. Minister Sithraman will be exploring new vistas of cooperation between India and Russia. The BRICS grouping of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa was conceived by Russia, as was the subgroup of Russia, India and China, designed to sustain a core element of Eurasian peace and security. Returning to Parthasarathy’s piece: he referred to the convergence of Indo-Russian interests in support of the Bashr al-Assad’s Syrian regime against the jihadi opposition, complemented with India as active participant in the quadrilateral naval exercises with the US, Japan and Australia in the Indian Ocean.. In a fluid international environment, a zero sum game can be a hazardous undertaking. India and Russia are in full accord on need for a multilateral global order to replace the discredited unilateralism seeded in an earlier age.

New milestone in India’s space race India’s Space Research & Organization [ISRO] achieved the landmark launch of its much awaited GSAT-6A communications satellite in a geosynchronous transfer orbit at a height of 36,000km in a stationary geostationary orbit. It carried on board a GSLV F-08 from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharicota on the east coast of India. The GSAT-6A incorporates the high-thrust Vikas engine and will complement the GSAT-6 already These two satellites combined will provide platforms for the development of advanced technologies such as the unfurlable antennae, hand-held device, and ground networks,’ said K. Sivan, Chairman, ISRO, after the satellite was in an initial orbit of a perigree of 170 km and an apogee of 35,975km. The Indian-designed and

manufactured cryogenic engine thrust the satellite into higher orbit, the cryogenic technology eventually mastered locally. The GSAT-6A gives India a bigger and more penetrative eye in the sky with civilian and significant military uses. For long years the United States had placed India on the prohibited list for cryogenic technology, forcing India into a slower track of development. The country’s space scientists and engineers between them went forward step by step including setbacks along the way, before the goal of self-sufficiency was reached. The effort was a valuable learning experience. There were no short cuts, as means and ends were skillfully calibrated. The work in progress has ended in fulfillment. One cannot ask for better.

Australia was in turmoil following television evidence of ball tampering by three members of the country’s cricket team during the Test match against South Africa in Cape Town. Steve Smith and David Warner, respectively captain and vice-captain, and their protégé Test rookie Cameron Bancroft, caught on camera ball tampering, were suspended. Smith and Warner were stripped of their captaincy and vice-captaincy and all three banned from appearing in the next Test in Johannesburg and put on the plane to Australia. The Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, was apoplectic, denouncing the fallen cricketers for besmirching the fair name of their country, for being poor role models for kids, and for violating the ethos of what the game of cricket had come to represent over generations throughout the cricketing world. This is true in theory, less so in practice as the uproar in England’s notorious bodyline tour of 1932 of Australia showed up only too well. Match fixing is a far more serious breach of the law and of ethics than ball tampering, which, in some form or the other, has been practiced at almost all levels of first class cricket. The brazenness of the latest manifestation of ball tampering struck a sensitive chord, bringing to the surface the deep resentment of opponents at Australian arrogance, epitomized by sledging – abusive language – directed at those of the opposition deemed

obstacles to an Australian victory. Prime Minister Turnbull excoriated the practice as reprehensible, the great Don Bradman told an interviewer that any player in his team indulging in this practice would receive a warning to desist; if he persisted, he would never play in a team of which Bradman was captain. All these factors came together in critical mass. Smith and Warner were banned from international cricket for the next year, while Bancroft was given the marginally lesser sentence of nine months. The breakdown of Steve Smith on camera was poignant. He admitted to wrongdoing as a grave error of judgment which would remain with him for the rest of his life; he was brimming with remorse amid the tears for the dishonor and pain he had brought to his father, standing at his side, and to the game he loved and cherished. With the dust settling, it is time to revisit his transgression. The Times in London penned the following lines: ‘Dear Australia, that’s enough now. This was ball tampering, not murder.’ The former Indian Test batsman, V.V.S. Laxman, speaking affectionately of Smith and Warner, hoped they would emerge stronger from their ordeal, with an undiminished appetite for runs that had entertained crowds around the world. Their sentences should be proportionate, and hence reduced. True justice is never vengeance.

Ball tampering: A step too far

Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

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Truth can be stated in a thousand different ways, yet each one can be true. - Swami Vivekananda

Alpesh Patel

5 Reasons You and Politicians Should Do Yoga and Meditation It’s Stress Awareness month believe it or not. So how can I help? How about these 5 reasons for mediation and yoga? One: A mass shooting in America, and a mass Yoga performance in India. As the Dalai Lama said, ‘when every 8 year old child is taught meditation, then there shall be peace in the world’. Interestingly, schools in the UK have added mindfulness to the curriculum to help children cope with stress. Two: Over a year ago, I went to meditate with Buddhist monks in the jungles of Laos. The Hindus, Buddhists and Surrealists all know the world is an illusion. So they can be detached from its pains. Happiness comes from that realisation and that realisation comes as the ancient Hindu text, the Bhagavad Gita, carrying the ‘Song of God’ Himself says, comes from meditation. Western scientists recently discovered that Hindu-Buddhist style meditation stimulates areas of the brain which cause a feeling of happiness. Three: When former British Prime Minister, David Cameron, took office he said he wanted a measure for happiness not just economic growth (GDP). Why? Because despite a relentless rise in British GDP since it’s ever been measured, our happiness has not had the same trajectory. Indeed, some of the happiest people in the world live in countries which have the lowest GDP. The American Founding Father revolutionaries under their Constitution even sought to rid themselves of the British ‘in pursuit of happiness’. Happiness is therefore a legitimate political goal. Even though over 200 years since its founding, the country with the world’s largest GDP does not have the greatest happiness. Four: Steve Jobs did it. As you take your MBA and try to emulate the greatest businessman of the century, don’t forget it was his meditation he referenced time and again to success. When was I happiest here in Laos? When cycling down a remote jungle hill or a moonlit deserted street at midnight. Why? It was the meditation the monks here told me of. My mind was empty. Meditation with monks taught me something; as a Hindu, I already knew how to meditate. Five: Want to make British people happier Mrs PM? Want the nation to be more productive? Want it to compete better? Teach meditation in schools. Your children are being whooped by those from Eastern meditative cultures – can’t get any worse, can it? The benefits to concentration and performance are well known. You can’t keep spending your GDP out of unhappiness. Editor: CB Patel

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Celebration of the Commonwealth to take place at National Memorial Arboretum The National Memorial Arboretum, in Staffordshire, will be hosting a week of activities celebrating the contributions of the Commonwealth to coincide with the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in April. This special programme will run from Monday 16 April to Sunday 22 April and will include a series of special talks about memorials with links to the Commonwealth, and a special menu in the Arboretum’s resta urant. The 150-acre site is home to more than 350 memorials dedicated to groups and individuals that have served, suffered, and sacrificed on behalf of our country. Each day, visitors will have the opportunity to join one of the Arboretum’s dedicated and knowledgeable volunteers for a free talk about one of the many memorials with links to the Commonwealth. The fifteen-minute talks will take place at

10.30am and 2.00pm. One Thursday 19th April, World War I Sikh Memorial will be held. During the First World War, 628 Victoria Crosses were awarded, including 145 to servicemen born overseas who fought for Britain. These overseas born recipients are commemorated at the Arboretum

Leeds student stabbed beaten and bitten outside house party

through 145 commemorative paviors, laid by the Department of Communities and Local Government as part of the centenary commemorations of the First World War. On Tuesday 17 April and Thursday 19 April, the Arboretum’s in-house expert Phil Nixon will host sessions at 12.00pm where visitors can learn the fascinating stories of some of the Commonwealth Heroes who received the Victoria Cross during the conflict. Sarah Oakden, Head of Marketing at the National Memorial Arboretum said, “The Arboretum is home to a number of memorials commemorating the contributions made by Commonwealth citizens, during both world wars and other subsequent conflicts. This programme of events will help visitors learn about the remarkable contributions made by Commonwealth heroes and how they are recognised through the memorials we have on site.”

Convicted rapist goes back to jail for grooming 12-year-old

Osman Ali

Convicted rapist, Osman Ali, from Rochdale, has been jailed for allegedly grooming a 12-year-old girl on Facebook and raping her.

Ali was previously jailed for eight years in 2012 after he and two other men took turns to rape a college student whilst the ordeal was being filmed on a mobile phone. After serving half of his sentence, he was released from prison in 2016. After being released from prison for his “good behaviour”, he started to target the young girl after meeting her through social media, and convinced her that he was her boyfriend. In a statement, the girl

who is now 13 said, “I was only 12 at the time and he had me lying to my parents about where I was. He used me and he did terrible things to me that I have had to talk to police officers about. We had to get social workers involved and it may affect me in years to come or when I meet future partners. My school became aware and some of my friends drifted away from me. I had to visit the court and I used to have bad dreams and wake up in the night. I feel like am being

Jaguar Land Rover worker, Usman Waheed, jailed for raping student

A Jaguar Land Rover worker has been jailed after befriending a student who had come to Birmingham for a night out and then raping her on an industrial estate. A court heard the attack had affected every aspect of the 17-year-old victim’s life who had suffered nightmares and panic attacks. Usman Waheed, 24, of Gough Road, Sparkhill, had previously been convicted of rape following a trial at Birmingham Crown Court. He was sentenced to six-and-a-half years and ordered to register as a sex offender for life. The victim, along with a female friend, also 17, had travelled from Preston on December 11 2016 after telling her parents they were going to Manchester. Using fake identity they had tried but failed to get into the Rainbow Club in Digbeth. The teenagers had then became stranded because they could not get a train home until the next morning.

Usman Waheed

Timothy Harrington, prosecuting said: “The victim was particularly vulnerable in the circumstances she found herself in. She was just 17 in a strange city with nowhere to go.” She had then met Waheed, who was with others, and he had then driven her to a secluded industrial estate near Birmingham airport where he raped her in the back of the car. In a statement the victim said what happened had a “massive effect” on her life. It had made her feel more vulnerable and had

impacted on her social life and her academic studies. In passing sentence Judge Roderick Henderson said: “She came with a friend from the North East to Birmingham for a night out. They were not as mature and sophisticated as they thought they were and they were not able to get in the club. They crossed the path of you and some of your friends.” The judge said he had taken into account the “unusually extreme effect” of the incident on her and that she had been “utterly devastated.” He went on: “You knew that she was lost and far from home. I accept there was some consensual activity but there came a point when she did not want it to go on further. That was crystal clear to you but you carried on and raped her.” Trevor Meegan, defending, said it was not a case in which Waheed, who was the sole bread winner in his family, had deliberately lured the victim to the industrial estate.

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punished over it all. My dad has had to support me. I feel like I am missing part of my teenage years. The memories of what he has done to me will live for years.” At Minshull Street Crown Court, was sent back to prison for 14 and a half years after admitting to seven charges of rape. After he is released, he will be on licence until 2037 under the terms of an extended sentence. Furthermore, he was ordered to follow an indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Order.

A Leeds student said he was stabbed, beaten and bitten during a brutal and unprovoked attack by suspected gatecrashers outside a student house party in Headingley. University of Leeds aviation technolgy student Mitt Malhotra, 21, said he was targeted by at least two men in the garden of the house in Headingley, just before 4.30am on Saturday 24th March 24. Mr Malhotra, who is living in Hyde Park, Leeds, said two men verbally abused him and his girlfriend Lauren Best, 20, before he was attacked. Mr Malhotra said one of the men punched him to the ground before at least one other man punched and kicked him. He said after the initial attack ended he was in shock and was stood on Spring Road talking to his girlfriend when he was punched to the ground again. He said he believed the man had a knife or a blade between his knuckles during that attack.

'Dangerous' faith healer ripped family apart, claims alleged victim

A 'dangerous' faith healer is destroying Birmingham families by telling relatives to cut ties with each other, it has been claimed. The alert was issued by a woman who said she had financially exploited by the man. In a letter to a local Leicester newspaper she said he flew into the UK regularly from India and presented himself as a spiritual healer in both Birmingham and Leicester. The newspaper said his details had been passed to the authorities. The man’s methods appear to mirror those of con artists highlighted by Leicestershire Police and trading standards officials at Leicester City Council on a number of occasions in the past few years. Typically, such so-called 'healers' claim to be able to lift curses, ensure success in business and cure illnesses from cancer to depression. There are documented cases in the city of families and individuals handing over tens of thousands of pounds for bogus cures which come in the form or prayers or potions.

Birmingham twins jailed for £450k charity tax scam

Twin brothers who set up fake charities to steal more than £450,000 in Gift Aid repayments have been jailed. Arfan and Imran Ali, 30, both of Inverclyde Road, Birmingham, claimed to be trustees of charities providing clean water to third world countries. But an HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) investigation found them to be fraudsters who failed to provide any services or money for good causes. At trials, they were found guilty of conspiracy to cheat the public revenue. Imran Ali was convicted at Birmingham Crown Court in July 2017 and sentenced to five years in prison. But his twin brother failed to turn up to court and was arrested by HMRC officers in October. At Birmingham Crown Court on Monday, Arfan Ali was given a prison sentence of four years and eight

Arfan and Imran Ali

months. HMRC said the pair used aliases to set up charities and submitted claims for Gift Aid repayments based on bogus donations between May 2009 and August 2012, also using the details of a legitimate charity to submit further fraudulent Gift Aid claims. The scheme allows charities to reclaim tax on a donation. The £456,408 the brothers falsely claimed, HMRC said, would have needed £1.2m in legitimate donations, but the charities' bank accounts showed "nowhere near

this figure". The brothers instead, it said, withdrew large amounts of cash for themselves, or transferred it to the bank accounts of their businesses, which included catering companies and a convenience store. Paul Fisher, assistant director of HMRC's Fraud Investigation Service said: "The brothers knew what they were doing was utterly wrong but didn't care." Both will face proceeds of crime hearings in due course in a bid to reclaim some of the money.


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Lavish Royal wedding London overtakes New York in murder rates may cost £32 million There has been a surge in the number of young people losing their lives in knife and gun crimes in London, undoubtedly leaving us all anxious, outraged and worried. And according to new reports, it is for the first time that London has overtaken New York in terms of the murder rates.

As 19th May is steadily approaching, the anticipation for the Royal wedding of the year is intensifying. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will be tying the knot and entering marital bliss in May, and it is estimated that their wedding will cost around £32 million. Bridebook, a wedding planning company who are planning the wedding of Millie Mackintosh and Hugo Taylor, predicts the costs of what may contribute to the estimated £32 million total of Prince Harry's wedding. The wedding planning company predicts that the flowers would cost more than £110,000, a sophisticated counterdrone system would cost £1 million, while sausage rolls served on silver platters and tea served to guests may cost £26,000. The Royal couple's wedding could make its place on the list of the top 10 most expensive weddings of all time. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's wedding was an estimated £20 million, however, Prince Charles and Diana's wedding was estimated to have cost a whopping £84 million.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

A grand nuptial affair The billionaire steel tycoon, Lakshmi Mittal's daughter's wedding in 2004 was a 6-day affair,

Sanjay Hinduja, who is the son of Gopichand Hinduja, one of the richest men in Britain, also had a lavish and enviable wed-

Amit Bhatia and Vanisha Mittal

Sanjay Hinduja and Anu Mahtani

nothing short of a Bollywood film, and had guests such as Kylie Minogue and Shah Rukh Khan. The wedding took place at the 17th-century Vaux le Vicomte, in France, and the overall expenditure for the wedding is said to have cost £30 million.

ding. The wedding, which took place in India in 2015, had many high profile guests including fashion designer Manish Malhotra, and power-packed performances by Jennifer Lopez and Nicole Scherzinger. The overall total for the wedding is said to be £15 million.

Royal Mail stamp price hike

Royal Mail has increased their stamp prices “to ensure the sustainability” of the postal service. Some large letters could now cost over £1 if posted first class. The price for a First Class stamp has increased by more than double in the past eight years. However, Royal Mail reiterates that in spite of the changes in price, they are still offering good value and service. A spokesperson for Royal Mail said, “Royal Mail understands that many companies and households are finding it hard in the current economic environment. We have considered any pricing changes very carefully and in doing so have sought to minimise any impact on our customers. These changes are necessary to help ensure the sustainability of the Universal Postal Service. Royal Mail's stamp prices are among the best value in Europe when compared to other postal operators. The UK also has one of the highest quality of

Pope Francis

Met Commissioner Cressida Dick and the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan

Tottenham, North London, on 2nd April 2018 after being shot. On the same night, two boys, aged 15 and 16 were found in Walthamstow, East London, suffering from gun shot and knife wounds, and are said to be in a critical condition. The charity head of programmes for Fight for Peace, Jacob Whittingham said, “What's scary about London is the randomness of the crime. With young people in London, you have no idea if and when you may be the victim of a violent crime – that's why they feel the need to carry weapons.” Met Commissioner, Cressida Dick is said to have stated that websites

and mobile phone apps, such as Instagram, Snapchat and YouTube were partially to blame for the violence. She said, “There's definitely something about the impact of social media in terms of people being able to go from slightly angry with each other to 'fight' very quickly.” The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan has blamed the Government for police cuts. He tweeted, “Tory police cuts have already cost London thousands of police officers and staff, most of our police station front counters and police buildings. It's time for the Government to stop misleading the public and properly fund the police.”

Foundation showcases ‘Altus League’ to inspire next generation of British South Asian footballers On 31st March 2018, the Altus League came to an exciting close in a Finals Day hosted at St. George’s Park, the home of English football.

Royal Mail has increased stamp prices "to ensure the sustainability” of the postal service

service specifications of any major European country.” First Class stamps have increased by 2p to 67p, and Second Class stamp increased by 2p to 58p. Large First Class stamp have risen by 3p to £1.01; and Large Second Class stamps have increased by 3p to 79p.

Vatican denies that pope said “there is no hell” Pope Francis has found himself in the middle of sensational claims as it is alleged that he told an Italian journalist that “there is no hell”. The Vatican has swiftly denied that the comment was made by issuing a statement saying that no such interview had been granted to the journalist. Eugenio Scalfari, 93, the founder of La Repubblica newspaper, had a private meeting with

London and New York both have similar sized population of around 8.5 million people. However, the Big Apple's murder rate has gone down by around 87% since the 1990s. On the other hand, the murder rate in London has increased by nearly 40% in just three years – this is barring death caused by terrorist attacks. A 23-year-old man became the eleventh person to be fatally stabbed or gunned down in the capital in just 16 days. Police launched a murder probe after the unidentified man was knifed in the neck in Greenwich, reportedly near Plumstead train station. In the latest series of violent killings in London, a 17-year-old girl, Tanesha Melbourne died in

the pope. According to his article, he asked Pope Francis where “bad souls” go and where they are punished. Scalfari quoted the pope as allegedly saying,

“They are not punished. Those who repent obtain God's forgiveness and take their place among the ranks of those who contemplate him, but those who do not repent and cannot be forgiven disappear. A Hell doesn't exist – the disappearance of sinning souls exists.” It is the third time that the Vatican has issued statements denying articles by Scarfari about the pope.

The Altus League is the latest initiative to be launched by international charity, the Kashif Siddiqi Foundation (KSF), committed to providing a platform for underrepresented communities in football. The pilot league, endorsed by the FA and Professional Footballers Association, combined weekly training sessions with coach-player mentoring, promoting teamwork, discipline and leadership. More broadly, the initiative sought to bridge the gap between the South Asian community and mainstream sport, as well as empower young footballers with valuable life skills. The day brought together the best players in a showdown between the Bradford Bolts and the East London Lions. In total, 70 young people from both East London and Bradford, aged between 16 and 18-years-

Kashif Siddiqi

old, took part in the eight week-long project. Kashif Siddiqi, professional footballer and founder of KSF, is hoping to harness his experiences and learning from supporters and influential footballers such as Ronaldinho and Pelé. He said, “The Altus League is about providing a platform for young South Asians to come together on the football field. Football has an extraordinary capacity to unite. Whatever our background, our race, our ability, football transcends borders, and it’s at grassroots level, where the formative years of many young people’s lives are spent, that this message is most important. The skills you

pick up on the pitch are universal; discipline, communication skills, leadership and self-confidence are all so important. If we can provide this space for young South Asians to enjoy themselves, while acquiring tangible skills that they can use for the rest of their lives, then that’s a big win in my book.” While diversity is apparent across leagues at home and abroad, Kash remains one of only eleven South Asians to have played at professional level in the UK. This latest initiative hopes to address that, by building confidence and sporting aspirations at a grassroots level in the community.


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Muslim terror suspects should not be quizzed on faith straight away The Government's independent reviewer of terrorism legislation has expressed that police should not automatically question Muslim terror suspects on their religion straight away. Max Hill QC said police should analyse and review the how closely terror suspects were questioned about their faith amid investigation into the Westminster attack in 2017. The report by Max Hill QC about how police used Operation Classific, terrorism powers during the investigation and found that none of the terror

suspects were arrested on the grounds of their religion or ethnicity. However some suspects were questioned about their religion due to Khalid Masood, the man responsible for the Westminster attack, and his extremist support for Isil. Hill stated that there would be “understandable concern” over questions about faith and that Masood's extremist views and support for Isil provided “a justification for the religious context of some of the questions posed in interviews during Operation Classific”. He said, “However,

every interview is case specific and it does not follow that it would be appropriate to ask very detailed religious questions in every case where a Muslim has been arrested on suspicion of terrorism-related activity. I therefore recommend, in the interest of clarity, that the police take this opportunity to review training on the circumstances and extent to which such questions will be necessary in future interviews. I accept, however, that questioning detainees about religion or any other matter occurs with careful thought and planning.”

Weight loss surgery good for heart in more than 1 way Weight loss surgery, such as gastric bands and bypasses, has proven to be good for the heart in many ways. A study has found that obese people are twice as likely to find love after weight loss surgery. However, there is a downfall as well. The study revealed that patients who are already married are a third more likely to divorce after having the surgery. Weight loss surgery also helps with cutting the risk of getting a heart attack and diabetic complications. Swedish researchers analysed the social impact of

weight loss surgery by using data from one study of 3,900 obese people tracked roe a decade, and one of 300,000 tracked for five years. In the first group, patients who had the surgery were twice as likely to start a relationship as those who had not, with 35% of them finding love. In the second group, patients who had the weight loss surgery were 35% more likely to start a relationship, with and 15% doing so after four years. The study found that the more weight people lost, the more likely they were to start a relationship.

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In the journals JAMA Surgery, researchers wrote, “For the person with obesity who are single, a better chance of finding a partner might be added as yet another positive association of bariatric surgery-induced weight loss.” NHS carries out about 6,000 operations per annum. However, more than a million people are eligible for the surgery in Britain, which costs £6,000. The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) considers it to be one of the mos cost-effective treatments.

Britain allegedly gives £20m to schools that incite students to become jihadists In a series of Parliamentary answers, the aid minister, Alistair Burt, has declared that British taxpayers are funding the salaries of 33,000 teachers who are applying a school curriculum that has been criticised for promoting violence against Israel. It is said that over £20 million of British aid money has been utilised on Palestinian schools in the past year, despite MPs knowing the official curriculum could propel students to become jihadists or martyrs. A report by the Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education (Impact-SE), said it “exerts pressure over young Palestinians to acts of violence”. Some of the lessons being taught by

The curriculum allegedly teaches children that those who carry out terrorist attacks will be rewarded in paradise

British-funded teachers include a maths textbook for nine-year-olds that ask students to calculate the number of martyrs in Palestinian uprising, as well as a textbook for 10-year-olds that calls jihad and martyrdom “the most important meanings of life”.

Big pharmaceutical companies' £20m “secret payments” An investigation by The Times newspaper has found that two of the UK stock market's biggest pharmaceutical companies have made millions in remuneration in “secret” payments to healthcare professionals and organisations. The investigation found that at least £19.6 million (€22.3 million) was made in anonymous payments across Europe, including €17.9 million by the Cambridge-based company, Astrazenca, and €4.4 million by the rare diseases and neuroscience specialist, Shire. The total

covers payments such as consultancy fees and “related expenses”, as well as travel and accommodation for events sponsored or organised by the companies. The anonymous payments have been made despite a European selfregulatory code of conduct encouraging drugs companies to re-talk terms about contracts with professionals, such as health organisations and doctors in order to include consent to reveal details. Ben Goldacre, director of the evidence-based medicine data lab at

Oxford University, said the public “need to know if someone who praises a drug is getting money from the company”. “The state has chosen not to invest in disseminating unbiased evidence to doctors. So industry has stepped into that gap. Doctors commonly turn to free ‘educational’ activities, delivered by ‘key opinion leaders’ paid by industry. I doubt there are many doctors who completely change their opinions about treatments in exchange for a cheque, but it’s a temptation that some cave in to.”


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7th April 2018

Blind man felt “humiliated” as he was refused a seat on train

AsianVoiceNewsweekly

Drink driver who caused three boys' death jailed

A 37-year-old blind man felt “humiliated” and was left in tears after he was refused a seat on a Southeastern train in March, despite being in a disability priority section. Amit Patel, who became blind five years ago after a haemorrhage behind his eyes, struggled to stand on the moving train as he was unable to find anything to hold on to. He was travelling with the aid of his guide dog, Kika, at the time. Patel said, “People can be so selfish. They pretend they can't see or hear when I ask if there's a seat available. It's so humiliating when I struggle to hold onto something and keep Kika safe at the same time. This is when you'll see a tear running down my face. Life is difficult enough.” He was forced to stand with his back against the doors to keep steady. Patel had previously encountered rude commuters. In February, people tried to push past him on an escalator. He said, “These types of incidents really knock my confi-

Harry Rice

Jay Chudasama jailed for 13 years

Amit Patel with his guide dog, Kika

dence but you'd never know it as I put on a brave face. In reality, I feel like a terrified little boy inside.” A Southeastern spokesperson has stated, “We would hope that people use their judgement and give up seats to passengers who may have a greater need, and we're sorry to hear that Mr Patel experienced an awkward journey on this occasion.

We're already rolling out clearer priority seat signage on the trains that don't already have it to make it more visible. As well as priority seats, we offer priority seating cards and priority seat badges that our passengers can show to another passenger sitting in a priority seat, without causing a fuss or having to explain themselves.”

Jay Chudasama, 28, who was two-and-a-half times the alcohol limit when he drove at 71mph on a 60mph road in Hayes, West London, and killed three teenagers while they walked to a birthday party, has been jailed for 13 years. Chudasama, from Hayes, a car hire worker, who also had traces of cannabis in his system, pleaded guilty to three counts of causing death

35 of which are not receiving support amid radicalisation fears. Jihadi who had two council flats

Umar Haque

El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Amon Kotey

against them as “propaganda”. They also suggested the accusations against them were cooked up as an excuse to kill them with drone strikes in Syria. ElSheikh stated, “No fair trial, when I am 'the Beatle' in the media. No fair trial.” Both alleged jihadis also criticised the government's decision to revoke their citizenship as “illegal”. Elsheikh said that the annulment of their citizenship exposes them to “rendition and torture” “of being taken to any foreign land and treated in any way and having nobody to vouch for you. When you have these two guys who don't even have any citizenship... if we just disappear one day, where is my

mum going to go and say, 'where is my son'?” Alexanda Amon Kotey is of Ghanaian and Greek-Cypriot descent and convert to Islam in his 20s. El Shafee Elsheikh moved to Britain from Sudan with his family when he was a child. Both have been interrogated by US officials. The group's leader, Mohammed Emwazi, also known as “Jihadi John” was killed in a drone strike in 2015. Another member, Aine Lesley Davis was arrested and convicted in Turkey and is now serving seven years behind bars. It is now to be decided what the fate of Elsheikh and Kotey will be as Britain and America debate where the two should be sent to stand trial.

by dangerous driving at the Old Bailey. Harry Rice, 17, George Wilkinson, 16, and Josh McGuinness, 16, were in a group of eight friends walking to a 16th birthday party at Goals five-a-side football club on 26th January at around 8:40pm. They lost their lives after being hit headon by Chudasama as he lost control of the car. Speaking in court, Josh McGuinness' mother, Tracy Blackwell said, “On January 26 2018, our world collapsed. There are no adequate words to describe the pain, anger, despair and loss that I feel from Josh's death. I feel

George Wilkinson

tortured everyday. My family and I have been given life sentences. We will never live ordinary lives again. I feel battered and bruised and scarred for life.” Speaking about the event that led to her son's death, she said, “Mr Chudasama hit our children at speed and killed our boys who were walking on the pavement where they should have been safe. Instead of trying to help the children he chose to run away. I do not believe he is at all sorry for what he has done. If he was, his behaviour would have been very different.”

Fake teacher who tried to radicalise children jailed for 25 years

2 British jihadis complain they have been denied a fair trial Two men from West London, El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Amon Kotey, suspected to be members of Isil dubbed the Beatles have said that the government decision to annul their citizenship denies them to a fair trial. The duo, who are alleged to have been members of a group of four British jihadists who captured, tortured and killed hostages, including aid workers and American journalists James Foley in northern Syria. Elsheikh and Kotey were captured in by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces in Eastern Syria in early January, and are currently being held in Northern Syria. In an interview with Associated Press news agency, both have denied any involvement in the group's murders or kidnapping, and even went to the extent to state that the death of journalist James Foley was “regrettable”. They denounced the media for spreading stories about the alleged Beatles cell and called the allegations

Josh McGuinness

Umar Haque, the Islamic teacher who tried to brainwash children aged between 11 and 14 at the Ripple Road Mosque in Barking, East London, by making them act out battles between police and ISIS, has been jailed for a minimum of 25 years. Haque, who also drew up targets in London for potential terror attacks such as Big Ben, London Heathrow Airport and Parliament, was dragged from the dock at the Old Bailey as he preached the end of “western domination”. Justice Haddon-Cave said that Haque had the opportunity to engage with Prevent, the government's voluntary deradicalisation programme in June 2016, however, he declined the offer. Haque, who had no teaching qualification, had access to 250 children,

One of Umar Haque's confidant, Muhammad Abid, 27, who allegedly plotted to bomb landmark sites in London as well as radicalise young boys, is said to have had two council flats – one for himself and one for his wife. It is said that he manage to fraudulently get two council flats by claiming his wife, Juwayriyah Noor, needed her own flat as she “wanted her independence”. Abid told jurors, “She wanted to maintain her independence from myself and, number two, because of her health conditions.” He allegedly informed the council that his wife was suffering from “stress and post-natal depression”, hence required fulltime care. He claimed benefits for being his wife's carer, despite living in the other flat, 20 minutes drive away from her. MPs have called an investigat ion into how Newham Council was duped by Abid. Priti Patel, the Former Secretary of State for International Development has stated, “The abuse of the housing register and benefits system is scandalous and questions must be asked as to how he cheated it. At a time when there is a

shortage of housing, Newham [Council] should have been more vigilant and carried out more checks.” In a statement, Newham Council expressed, “The council was not aware that they were a couple until after the husband's arrest. They have never been dealt with by our housing service as a couple.”

Muhammad Abid

Muhammad Abid was sentenced to four years and three months at the Old Bailey for failing to reveal information about terror plans conceived by Umar Haque. Abuthaher Mamun, 19, was jailed for 12 years for helping Haque prepare attacks. Mamun was given a further year on for extended licence. Nadeem Patel, 26, was cleared of plotting with Haque and had also previously admitted to having a gun.


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7th April 2018

Pharmacies show their “cost effective” plan Lord Loomba urges action on gender equality Four of the UK's largest multiples have claimed that using pharmacy care plans to support patients with long-term health conditions could reduce the cost of healthcare by up to 21%. The Community Pharmacy Future (CPF) group, which comprises of Lloyds Pharmacy, Boots, Rowlands and Well, have stated that the care plan service tested “must become part of the integrated package of care commissioned by the NHS so that each patient gets

appropriate support to reach their health goals.” According to an independent evaluation of the pilot which was conducted by researchers at the University of East Anglia, 93% of patients who attended the first appointment agreed one or more health goals with their pharmacist. 39% of those patients achieved one or more of these targets in a span of 12 months. The authors of the report said that “despite the intensive nature of the service”, with “multiple interventions over an

extended period of time”, costs were reduced “by making use of the whole pharmacy team, including healthcare assistants obtaining clinical measurements”. Lead author of the paper Dr Michael Twigg, lecturer in primary care pharmacy at the University of East Anglia, said the results were “encouraging”. He said, “We look forward to working closely with industry colleagues to enhance the role of community pharmacy in identifying and addressing public health needs.”

during the forthcoming commonwealth Heads of Government meeting

Lord Loomba welcomed the opportunity to celebrate "all that is good about the Commonwealth" ahead of the forthcoming Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in April. Lord Loomba spoke of the efficiency with which the Commonwealth works and how it is "forward-thinking in this increasingly digitised and mobilised world, where networks and peo-

Prince Philip admitted to hospital for hip surgery On 3rd April 2018, Prince Philip, 96, was admitted to King Edward VII Hospital, London, for a planned hip operation the following day, Buckingham Palace said.

Prince Philip

A statement issued from Buckingham Palace said, “His Royal Highness, The Duke of Edinburgh was admitted to King Edward VII Hospital in London this afternoon, for planned surgery on his hip.” It is said that the Duke of Edinburgh had complained of a hip problem which caused him to recently miss a Windsor Castle event with

Queen Elizabeth II. An orthopaedic surgeon and council member of the Royal College of Surgeons, Scarlett McNally said in an interview, “Any operation and any anaesthetic carries some risk. What is most important is someone's fitness, as in their heart and lung fitness, how much exercise they do and how well nourished they are. That's more important than someone's chronological age.” Last summer, Prince Philip stepped down from his public duties but attends events occasionally with the Queen.

School run mum donates kidney to another parent who needed a transplant A mother at a primary school has donated a kidney to the father of one of her son's friends after hearing he was in desperate need for a transplant. Katy Ludlow, 34, heard about Ravi Nihal's plight, while dropping her son to Cecil Road Primary School in Kent. The 43-year-old father-of-three fell in in 2015 when his kidneys began to fail. He was forced to travel up to Guy's Hospital in London for three sessions of dialysis a week. As a result he had to give up his job with the National Grid as a supervisor. Ms Ludlow agreed to be tested to be a kidney donor after speaking to Mr Nihal's wife Nish at the school gate. Amazingly, medics determined Ms Ludlow was a match for Mr Nihal and agreed to go through with the lifechanging surgery. Before the operation, Ms Ludlow and Mr Nihal were on nodding terms at the school gate, although their children were firm friends. Now both families have a life-long bond. Mr Nihal told The Sun: 'I’ll never be able to repay Katy for what she did. She’s an incredible person to do something like this for someone who was

Katy Ludlow, left, donated a kidney to Ravi Nihal, second left, after hearing of his plight from Mr Nihal's wife, Nish, pictured second right next to Ms Ludlow's partner, right

almost a stranger. She has done something that people I've known all my life wouldn't have done.' Ms Ludlow added: 'Our two families are like one big family now. I’ve no regrets. I’d do it all over again. 'Ravi could have been on the transplant list for many years and I feel fantastic knowing I've saved his family from that. It's been brilliant seeing the

change in him since the transplant. He has a new lease of life and is smiling again.' According to NHS Direct, there were 3,000 kidney transplants carried out in the UK between April 2014 and April 2015, although there were still 5,000 people on the waiting list. On average, there are approximately 100 to 150 living donations each year.

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ple connected together are increasingly working towards the common good of all humanity." Focusing on the issue of women and girls rights and gender equality Lord Loomba stressed, “The Commonwealth, with its great wealth of people, institutions, and diplomatic ties, is well placed to be a leader in helping others as well as itself," as he contemplated how the Commonwealth might make more use of "the resources at our disposal to bring together more stakeholders to help more women and girls gain access to the tools they need to empower them and improve their lives and the lives of their dependants." "One of the reasons why this is so important," emphasised Lord Loomba, "is that both our country and the Commonwealth are committed to supporting the SDGs and pursuing an agenda of 50:50 equality by 2030." "Therefore," he argued, "bringing together pooled resources of knowledge and skills will not only help bring the goals closer to realisation but also benefit many individ-

Lord Loomba

uals along the way"; adding poignantly, "[t]his is particularly important for gender equality, which is a main part of the goals." Focusing on South Asia as a case in point, Lord Loomba said, "South Asia is one of the areas of the Commonwealth that would particularly benefit from a concerted effort to address many of the issues that women and girls face." Citing UNICEF reporting, he informed the House "that in the region there is “a lack of education opportunity for millions of girls, social customs that accept extreme gender bias, and practices such as early marriage”.


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READERS’ VOICE

Asian Voice |

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7th April 2018

Misguided anti-India protest

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is attending the CHOGM conference and is supposed to play a prominent role. The Commonwealth comprises of 53 countries. The population of India is almost 50% of that. Under Narendra Modi’s leadership India has a much better profile abroad. I am dismayed that my Sikh brethren are supposed to have joined some Pakistani inspired elements to protest against Prime Minister Modi. The so-called Friends of Dalits are also trying to take political advantage. I was very impressed with an article in Asian Voice dated 10th March by Rami Ranger, titled ‘A misguided call for Khalistan’. I am happy to learn that a very large number of Indians are going to the British Parliament welcoming Mr Modi’s visit. In his well written article, Mr Ranger has elaborated why Sikhs are an integral part of the nation that is India. I would like all the readers of Asian Voice to remember that India was enslaved for centureis not because the attackers were strong or well organised. The primary reason was that Indians themselves were so divided and engaged in internal warfare that the attackers were able to swallow one state after another. Sardar Patel created India larger than Samrat Ashok or Emperor Akbar. Let’s remain united and not become pawns in anti National aims. Amrik Singh Southall

Brexit can boost business

India and other countries can benefit hugely by doing many more business deals with Brexit Britain. Free from the shackles of time-consuming bureaucracy, Britain would be able to negotiate deals quickly and efficiently on extremely attractive terms. Rudy Otter By email

Count your blessings

People pursue an economic activity in their working life to provide for their later years, their retirement. I remember one of CB’s articles in his “jeevant panth” column in an earlier edition of Gujarat Samachar where he had said to the effect that “if you have your own house, have £100,000 in the bank and a car, you do not need anything more”. I am sure that many of us frugal Asians, by the time they retire, could have achieved this target. People pursue an economic activity during their working life to provide for the later years of their life. In their retirement, people, as many of the readers and contributors to this column are, like to sit back and ponder on what they have achieved in their lifetime. I am grateful to AV and GS to have provided me space to publish over 400 letters and a few poems and articles in these two weeklies. My proudest moment was when my mini-autobiography was published under the “Remember, recollect, recharge” column in AV. A framed copy of this is placed in my living room showcase besides the two invitations from HM the Queen to garden parties at Buckingham Palace. What is lacking is a certificate or award from ABPL at a ceremony for this purpose in recognition of the large number of letters and articles published in AV and GS. Such award ceremony would give us chance to meet other writers and ABPL staff. Dinesh Sheth Newbury Park, Ilford

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Write to our ‘Reader’s Voice’’ section about what you think regarding the various ongoing issues all around the world. Please send your letters to Rupanjana Dutta at rupanjana@abplgroup.com. Make sure they are NOT more than 450 words. Any letter longer than the limit may not be published. Do not send letters for ‘Readers’ Voice’ section by post or fax. Note that all your letters are subject to being edited by our team for valid reasons. - Asian Voice

Media proves its worth

Media, both print and TV, exercise enormous power over British people, as well as can sway government one way or another, especially when it comes to social and environment issues close to people’s hearts. It was the press who forced government to introduce 5p levy on supermarket plastic bags, thus reducing usage by some 85%. It could have been 99% if it was not half hearted attempt on part of the government, small shops being exempted. Now entire media is concentrating on plastic bottles, as we use 30 million bottles daily. This new, deposit scheme will include beside plastic, glass bottles and drink metal cans as well, attracting some 10p to 25p deposit per bottle. It will boost recycling from current 60% to around 90% if it is not a half-hearted measure by the government. Shoppers will pay deposit when buying drinks, incorporated in the price we pay at the till which could be reclaimed using “Reverse Vending Machines” giving vouchers to be redeemed, cashed at the till. This will even encourage children to pick up bottles from streets, as there is money to be made in such an enterprise! As usual, drink industry will make song and dance for the initial cost of introducing such machines, although such schemes are widely in use in many EU countries. Then Britain is soft touch when it comes to being exploited by the industry, whether it is cars, electrical goods, entertainment or holidays where we inevitably pay more than EU or US. The scheme could be run jointly by drink industry or an entire new entity can be created by the government, in association with the industry, imposing 1p levy per bottle to finance it. As different government operate under different schemes, we can study and choose the scheme that suits us best! Kumudini Valambia By email

The bane of knife crime

The increase in knife crime has risen its head again, creating a worrying situation where senseless killings are taking place of young lives caught up in gang warfare which is cause by youth unemployment among the ethnic minority groups. This is a sorry state of affairs where youth in the community have no sports, youth centres and learning music facilities to occupy their time in a constructive way. In London the capital city this year from January to March 11 young men have been stabbed to death. These killings are taking place all over the London region. The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has given assurances that he is taking serious youth violence and knife crime in the London “extremely seriously”. He also outlined proposals to tackle knife crime across the capital as part of a strategy which will be published in June. Schools and communities will also have a role in knife crime prevention and early intervention. The Office for National Statistics said knife offences rose by 23 per cent in the capital - meaning it now has a higher murder rate than New York. There were 37,443 recorded knife offences and 6,694 recorded gun offences in the year up to September 2017. In London the problem was even more pronounced than the rest of the country, with 12,980 knife crimes taking place in the capital 2,452 more than the equivalent year. Four teenagers were stabbed to death in London on New Year's Eve alone, and 22 were killed in March alone - making London deadlier than New York. The US city had a mere 21 killings in comparison. Commander Neil Jerome of the Met's territorial policing command condemned the crimes, saying the four families had lost a loved one to "senseless violence and the callous use of knives as lethal weapons". Britain’s top police officer has blamed social media for the soaring rate of knife crime in the UK, particularly among children. Met Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said websites and mobile apps such as YouTube, Snapchat and Instagram were partially to blame for the bloodshed. Speaking to the Times after 13 Londoners were killed in two weeks this month, Ms Dick blamed the internet for helping trivial disputes to escalate into violence “within minutes” as rivals goad each other. The root cause of knife and gun crime is that young men when they do not have anything constructive or better to do and they see a bleak future in front of them because of racism, inequality and discrimination they are inextricably drawn to crime. These impediments have to be removed first to given these young men hope of a better life. Baldev Sharma Rayners Lane, Harrow

AsianVoiceNewsweekly

Election and Malala

The word ‘election’ comes from the Latin word ‘eligere’. ‘Eligere’ means ‘to choose, select or pick’. To elect, or vote, means to select or to make a choice. The word voting is derived from Latin word ‘votum’ meaning ‘to wish for’. Voting refers to the process of choosing or electing a candidate to run the government’s affairs, usually through a ballot. In democratic India, general elections take place every five years. All those who are eighteen years of age have a right to vote. A number of candidates seek the election. They move from door to door. They hold public meetings and explain the programmes of their parties. If they get majority of votes, they win; but if they do not, they lose. An election, therefore, is like a battle. But this battle is fought in a peaceful way. It is a battle of ballots, not a battle of bullets. It is a pleasure to hear Malala Yousafzai, a victim of terrorism, come back home and speak her mind. Pakistan has suffered because of adventurism which dealt a blow to Jinnah’s Pakistan, which continues to bleed. Unfortunately this has driven Pakistan to financial insolvency, intrigue and an endless conflict which has resulted in death, misery and displacement of millions of innocent victims. Malala Yousafzai, the world’s youngest Nobel laureate, made her first trip back to Pakistan last week since Taliban shot her in the head more than five years ago for advocating girls’ right to go to school. She was flown to Britain in 2012 for medical care and then impressed the world with her eloquent defence of women and girls’ education. Malala is surely a positive face of Pakistan and that is why her compatriots welcomed her enthusiastically on return home. Malala Yousafzai is one such victim, who had the courage and moral strength to come out of this with added vigour to wage a struggle against this evil mindset which has plagued life and destiny of millions of people. Jubel D’Cruz, Mumbai, India

What you sow, so you reap?

Two British jihadis captured by anti-Assad Kurdish militia YPG, in eastern Syria, are crying foul at British government for stripping them of British citizenships, fearing that they will be tortured, will not get fair trial as Stateless persons. Their arguments are laced with same kind of truth and sincerity as that of Hitler! These two terrorists, nicknamed “Beatles” due to their Liverpool ascent, were responsible for beheading innocent Wesner’s including journalists, as well as selfless “Aid Workers” who went to help, delivering food and medicine to starving refugees, displaced Syrians, due to brutal civil war that has reduced this once proud, peaceful and prosperous country to warzone, looking like heavily bombed German cities of Berlin and Cologne, at the end of WW2. Syria under Assad Senior was once cosmopolitan country where Shias, Sunnis, Jews and orthodox Christians used to live side by side in peace and harmony. These two jihadis were used in propaganda videos against West, as well as to recruit young Wesner’s to move to Islamic State and fight for them. Their micky-mouse apology was, “It was regrettable, the death of innocent people” But at the same time blaming Western governments for not negotiating and paying ransom to ISIS! Their atrocities are so horrible that any trial, fair or foul is more than they deserve. I hope our government who have turned London into heaven for all sorts of criminals, from mass murders to spies and crooks who have defrauded billions, would not give in and let them in, as long-drawn trial will give Islamophobia a boost, punishing vast majority of decent, law abiding Muslims, especially from fringe Muslim communities of Daudi Bhoras, Ismalis, Ahmedias, Ithna-Asheri and Sufis who are as peaceloving, highly educated and gainfully employed as any other ethnic minorities who are caught in this crisis of not their making. Bhupendra M. Gandhi By email

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Ofsted school hijab ban stance challenged by teachers' union

Ofsted chief inspector Amanda Spielman risks splitting communities by backing head teachers who may wish to ban the hijab, says a teaching union leader. National Education Union leader Kevin Courtney said she overstepped her remit in February when she backed an east London head who tried to stop pupils wearing the Muslim head-scarf. He said heads should not ban the hijab without consulting the local community. Ofsted said head teachers needed to be able to take uniform decisions. But Mr Courtney said ahead of his union's conference in Brighton, he

feared schools might introduce bans because they were frightened of Ofsted, which could then put social cohesion at risk. Mr Courtney was referring to a speech in February in which Ms Spielman said: "School leaders must have the right to set school uniform policies in a way that they see fit, in order to promote cohesion. "It is a matter of deep regret that this outstanding school has been subject to a campaign of abuse by some elements within the community. "I want to be absolutely clear - Ofsted will always back heads who take tough decisions in the interests of their pupils."

She gave her backing to head teacher Neena Lall, of St Stephen's state primary, who had been involved in a row with Muslim community leaders over young pupils wearing the scarf in school. Ms Spielman also said her inspectors would speak to pupils wearing the scarf to find out why they were doing so in school, adding that wearing it could be interpreted

Record number of DMU Economics students land sought-after Government placements Ten students from De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) have passed the highly competitive selection process for the Government Economic Service (GES). With limited places on offer nationally, DMU students have secured a significant percentage of the placement opportunities for the latest recruitment cycle. Most will start in September and, if they impress and pass all their tests, the students will be automatically offered a one-year graduate scheme. Adam Chopdat is equally excited to be spending a year with the GES in Cardiff. He said: "I saw the job description and thought it

suited my Economics and Finance degree. I'm so happy, as I didn't think I'd get it." The 21-year-old from Leicester said he wouldn't have known about the opportunity without the Business and Law Placement Team. "I received great help and support from them. For me it's more like having a friend," he said. Classmate Ismail Chebaiki believes the realworld experience will "give

Schools cutting posts amid 'funding catastrophe'

The crisis of school funding in England is turning into a catastrophe, the largest teaching union has said. Kevin Courtney, general secretary of the National Education Union, said schools were not absorbing budget cuts, instead many were cutting posts and increasing class sizes. He highlighted research with his union suggesting many schools were covering classes with teaching assistants. The government said core school funding was rising to £43.5bn by 2020. Mr Courtney said: "Schools minister Nick Gibb would have us believe that schools have absorbed the cuts. "We think that's absolutely wrong, schools have not absorbed these cuts

and the cuts are going to continue over the lifetime of this government." Schools have been struggling as they face rising costs and growing pupil numbers. The survey of 900 teachers presented at the union's conference in Brighton also suggested schools were topping up budgets with parental contributions and by renting out buildings. Ministers have insisted that more money is going into schools, although earlier this month the Education Secretary Damien Hinds did acknowledge that funding was "tight". One in five of those questioned said their school had asked parents for money to help with school funding in the current academic year.

him a boost in the jobs market". The 20-year-old from London said: "I'll be working for the Government, so will get an insight into how they work. It's crucial experience as well as an insight into how people's lives are affected by Government decisions." Ismail also credits the placement team, along with his Economics lecturers, for helping him impress his future employer.

as ''sexualisation of young girls.'' A motion to be heard at the conference says that Ms Spielman went beyond ''the remit of Ofsted'' and that members should robustly challenge it. An Ofsted spokesman said: ''The NEU's comments are disappointing. There's nothing political about ensuring that schools and parents aren't being subject to undue pressure by national or community campaign groups. ''Head teacher need to be able to take uniform decisions on the basis of safeguarding or community cohesion concerns and Ofsted will always support them in doing that.''

7th April 2018

Stephen Hawking's funeral held in Cambridge The funeral service of British physicist Stephen Hawking was held in Cambridge on Saturday in presence of stars and academics who turned out to pay tribute to the worldfamous professor. Up to 500 family members, friends and colleagues attended the private funeral service at the Great St. Mary's Church, officiated by the Reverend Dr Cally Hammond, Dean of Gonville and Caius College, where Hawking was a fellow for more than 50 years, the BBC reported. Thousands of citizens and visitors were estimated to have turned up outside the church to pay their respects, watching Hawking's coffin being carried by six porters into the church. Hawking, who had motor neurone disease,

died on March 14, aged 76, at his home in the city. A legendary figure in the modern history of physics, Hawking is known for his work with black holes and relativity, and authored several bestsellers on science, despite being bound to wheelchair after contracting a motor neurone disease in 1963 at the age of 21. Hawking's ashes will be interred next to the remains of Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin at Westminster Abbey in London on June 15.

Schoolmasters and Women Teachers and the NEU - formerly the National Union of Teachers - are meeting for their annual conferences this weekend. The unions represent the vast bulk of teachers who belong to a trade union in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. In Birmingham, the Nasuwt is debating plans which could include "rolling strike action if governments, administrations and employers fail to agree to substantial, above-inflation and across-the-board pay increases next year". While the NUT motion, being heard in Brighton, claimed teachers' pay has fallen 20% in real terms

since 2010. It instructs the union to "launch a vigorous campaign on teachers' pay", calling for salaries to be restored to 2010 levels over the next three years. An amendment that was passed "committed to a ballot of all members for strike action". It also urged the union's executive to work with other teaching unions on submitting a joint pay claim for school workers - along the lines of that given to health workers - and for an initial pay hike of 5% "to begin restoring the cuts in living standards all school staff have suffered". In both cases, the issue will be referred to each union's executive to take forward.

Stephen Hawking

Teachers back prospect of national strike over pay The UK's two biggest teaching unions have moved closer to national strikes over pay, backing ballots on action if substantial rises are not agreed. The National Education Union (NEU) agreed a motion for a strike ballot, while the Nasuwt backed calls for a rolling programme of industrial action. If ballots go ahead and are supported, it could mean disruption in schools in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The government defended teacher pay, saying they get £37,400 on average. That rises to £41,900 in London, it said. Both the National Association of

Special needs cash shortfall 'leaves thousands of pupils unplaced' A shortage of special needs funding means growing numbers of children are being left without suitable school places, a teachers' leader has warned. National Education Union leader Kevin Courtney said official statistics showed 4,050 special needs pupils were without a place in 2017 in England. He said it was a disgrace that such pupils were at home because councils were being "starved" of funds for them. The government said money for schools and special needs had been protected. It was due to rise to its highest ever level of £43bn in 2020, with £6bn allocated for special educational needs this year, it said.

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But the Department for Education figures showed the number of pupils with special needs (SEND) without a school place last year had more than doubled from 1,710 in 2016. The warning comes after it emerged scores of local authorities have asked to switch money targeted at their main schools budget to spend on children with special educational needs. Councils are allocated funds for special needs in both mainstream and special schools through their "high needs" budgets. They have been complaining of shortfalls in this budget as it has been "cash flat" for a number of years (ie, the total does not account for inflation).

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MEDIA WATCH

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7th April 2018

As things stand at present, the general election scheduled for May/June 2019 is for the BJP to lose rather than for a motley group of opposition to win. Already the fissures are visible. Mayawati’s romance with Akhilesh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party was a brief encounter signifying the former’s determination to keep aloof from any coalition. The Telangana Chief Minister responded to his West Bengal counterpart Mamata Banerjee’s with the caveat that an anti-BJP coalition would have to exclude Congress.

BJP MP Shatrughan Sinha, former Union ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie with West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee

Ms Banerjee flew to New Delhi to cobble together a partnership of sorts with likeminded groups, studiously [at time of writing] kept clear of Congress President Rahul Gandhi, but met his mother Sonia and a motley group of other leaders, from Sharad Pawar, and BJP dissenters such as Yashwant Sinha and Aroun Shourie. Meanwhile the the twittering Rahul Gandhi twittering and snapping incoherently at Prime Minister Modi heels convinces few if any serious person he has the mettle to lead India.

Hindutva mob on rampage The mainstream BJP, it would appear, is unable or unwilling to control the antics of the Sangh parivar’s lunatic fringe. West Bengal witnessed prolonged mob violence of Ram Sena demonstrators at the Ram Navami celebrations equipped with swords and pistols clashed with the police. The Ram Sena consists almost exclusively of Hindi-speaking migrants from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. Three people were killed in the violence at Ranigunj. Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was understandably outraged at such behavior and promptly issued a blanket ban on further Ram Sena demonstrations in the State (Times of India March 27).

Comedy of errors BJP President Amit Shah, interacting with the media during a visit to Karnataka let loose a broadside at former BJP chief minister Yeddyurappa as the most corrupt holder of the office in the history of the State, the target, alas, was sitting at his side, much to the embarrassment of the party faithful. Shah meant Siddarahaiah, the present Congress Chief Minister. Shah’s gaffe could take its toll of the BJP’s fortunes in the upcoming Assembly polls on May 12, with results to bedeclared on May 15.. A generous electorate might

forgive the mix-up, seeing that he was in foreign territory far from the northern Hindi belt (Times of India, Hindu March 28).

Opinion poll prediction Opinion pollster Cfore, which has never failed with its assessment of winners and losers, has predicted a comfortable Congress victory in the Karnataka Assembly elections, with an enhanced Congress victory, with the BJP increasing its vote share at the expense of the JD (U). It attributes the Congress performance to the freedom given to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to select the candidates rather than handing down a list from the Congress high command as was the usual practice before. It appears to be working, according to the Cfore survey (Business Line March 27).

BJP mea culpa on Dalai Lama In as apparent volte face, the BJP government at the Centre, sensitive to the charge of kowtowing to China, dispatched Culture Minister Mahesh Sharma and party General Secretary Ram Madhav to Dharamsala to participate in the ‘Thank you’ programme of His Holiness to mark his arrival in India in April 1959 from his

native Tibet from where he fled. Beijing had made shrill protests to India on the Tibetan dignitary’s visits to Arunachal Pradesh, to which China has laid claim (Hindu March 31).

No change in India policy India’s Ministry of External Affairs had instructed the Tibetan authorities to move the venue of their celebrations from New Delhi in a bid to smoothen the Sino-Indian Summit in June at Qingdao between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping. Sources in the ministry said that there was no fundamental change in India’s China policy, from Doklam to OBOR [One Belt One Road Chinese project in which India has refused to participate] (Times of India March 28).

Missile tracking system for Pakistan China, for its part, has delivered an advanced missile tracking system to Pakistan. The system is an aid to the development of Pakistan’s offensive missile capability, opined Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post, which had received confirmation of the deal from a top member of the China Academy of Science. The Post attributed the sale of the equipment to India’s development of the Agni V intercontinental missile which can hit Beijing and Shanghai Hindu March 23) The Gallic saying puts this best: ‘The more things change the more they remain the same’.

Investment was involved, and also liberalization of licences. The process was being expedited. Once completed, the merger will create the largest telecom operator in India, with Rakesh Sharma as its CEO (Hindu March 28).

India’s holdings of US Treasury Bills soar India’s holdings of US Treasury Bill reached a record high of $148 billion in January. Record high foreign fund flows are spurring the Reserve Bank of India to buy more US gilts, of which India is presently the world’s 11th largest holder, having recently surpassed Saudi Arabia. The country’s foreign exchange reserves stand at an all-time high of $421.914 billion (Economic Times March 27).

Bandhan Bank restores banking image It seems only the other day that West Bengal’s homegrown Kolkata-based Bandhan Bank voyaged into the deeper waters of commercial banking from the modest microfinance entity for rural businesses. Driven by the faith and enterprise of its

Road map for 5G ready by June India’s ambition to position itself as a lead player in 5G technology will reach fruition by June, said Telecom Secretary Aruna Sundarajan. ‘A high level forum on 5G, which includes global experts, industry experts IITs, IISc, has already commenced work and done a fair amount of deliberation. By June India will have a full road map ready on this.’

Vodofone merger The merger of Vodofone India and Idea Cellular was in the final stages of approval by the Department of Telecommunications. Ms Sundarajan said Foreign Direct

order was placed by the Gujarat Industries Power Company Ltd. ‘Against stiff competition BHEL has won an order …on engineering procurement and construction … Significantly this will be BHEL’s largest project till date,’ said a company statement (Business Line March 27).

Surge in Maruti’s new Swift bookings Maruti Suzuki’s new Swift passenger car has received a record 100,000 bookings in 10 weeks. Acknowledging the milestone, a company official said about 15 per cent of customers had opted for auto gear shift variants. ‘This is actually a significant percentage but it may go up further,’ said the official. Maruti’s internal research revealed that style had emerged top of the three factors for the choice of Swift (Business Line 27).

India’s first step in Artificial Intelligence Last year, the government set up a taskforce under aegis of the Commerce Ministry to examine the means of leveraging Artificial Intelligence for economic growth. The report focuses on where AI technologies can be beneficial to the Indian state, the economy and the empowerment of its citizens. It thus identifies the 10 specific areas for rapid AI integration: manufacturing, fintech, health, agriculture, technology catering for varied abilities, national security, environment, retail, public services, retail and education. (Mint March 28).

Revisiting cold Fusion Chandrasekhar Ghosh MD, CEO

founder, then unknown Chandrasekhar Ghosh, now the toast of his peers in the banking world, the ascent of Babndhan Bank’s dramatic rise is stunning. Its current bumper listing has made it the India’s eighth most valued bank, ahead of the likes of the Bank of Baroda and Punjab National Bank. Bandhan Bank shares closed 27.3 per cent higher at Rs 477.20, compared with the issue of Rs 375. (Mint, Economic Times March 28).

Railways to revamp 68 stations The Indian Railways is set to revamp 68 designated stations from its own engineering and construction resources rather than await private sector collaboration. The Rail Ministry has instructed all its zones to start work immediately and complete the project within a year (Economic Times March 27).

BHEL to set up Gujarat power project

Dalai Lama embracing ex-soldier Naren Chandra Das, 80, who escorted him across the border from Tibet into India in April 1959

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State-owned Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) has won its largest solar photovoltaic contract for setting up a 75MW power plant in Gujarat. The

Cold fusion and Low Energy Nuclear Reaction (LNR) technologies have been the despair of many scientists across the world, but India is taking the first steps to restart research into it some 25 years after it was shut down at the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC). Three research groups are re-entering the field. IIT-Kanpur is concentrating on transmutation of elements at lower temperatures. IIT-Bombay has constructed the apparatus to produce energy spikes, but researchers that hese were the desired product. BARC, is revisiting the cold fusion paradigm, but its scientists are reluctant to discuss their work.

Pros and cons However cold fusion devotees claim that significant progresss has been made in achieving repeatability. Given the challenges posed by LENR, the government should fund the project, says M. Srinivasan, who was associated with the first Pokhran nuclear test of 1974. This view is endorsed by Prahlada Ramarao, former Chief Controller and Distinguished Scientist at the Defence Research & Development Organization. Kanpur-IIT Professor K.P. Rajeev asserts that results were promising but much work lies


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BAPS supports government ‘opt-out’ Organ Donation Bill

From left: Mandaben Nakarja, Sheetalben Raja, Kanchanben Bhagat, Swatiben Bhagat, Pritiben Depala and Nikita Odedra

BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS), headquartered at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London (popularly known as the ‘Neasden Temple’), welcomes the backing of MPs for a landmark bill to implement an ‘opt-out’ process for organ donation. Under the current legislation, donors or their families are required to give permission for their organs to be donated to someone else in the event of their death. However, a new proposed law, backed by the House of Commons in February, would change the landscape of organ donation so that people would have to, instead, declare if they do not wish to be a donor. The proposed change

is enthusiastically supported by BAPS as it could save hundreds of lives each year by increasing organ donation rates and reducing the suffering for those awaiting a transplant. His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj, spiritual leader of BAPS, has inspired and blessed BAPS volunteers to actively raise the importance of organ donation in the community through various initiatives and campaigns. Most recently, during the International Women’s Day Celebrations on 10 March 2018, female donors and recipients shared personal stories that inspired many others to also pledge their organs. Organ donation conferences have been held at

the Mandir focussing on both donation after death (July 2011) and living donation (October 2017). In addition, the Mandir has organised various awareness and recruitment drives to increase the number of people joining the national registers for organ donation and bone marrow donation (most recently in January 2018). Kirit Modi, a kidney transplant recipient and Life Vice-Chair of the National Kidney Federation, said, “I welcome the decision of introducing an opt-out process in England by the Government. Opting out will generate a national debate which will encourage many people, particularly from the Hindu and Jain communities to make

a positive decision to say ‘yes’ to organ donation after their death. “BAPS has taken the lead in promoting organ donation throughout the Hindu community in the UK for many years with remarkable success. The introduction of opting out will provide greater opportunities to further this work and make a real difference to the lives of those waiting for an organ transplant.” Yogvivek Swami, Head Swami of BAPS in the UK and Europe, added, “Giving the gift of life is one of the most selfless acts of charity one can perform. Hinduism firmly supports organ donation, and now with the new Government bill, we hope even more lives being can be saved and improved.”

Thief from Slough who stole from pensioner she was caring for is imprisoned

A thief has been sentenced to three years in prison after she stole money from an elderly woman she was supposed to be caring for. Nazish Nair, from Slough, admitted burglary and was sentenced at Aylesbury Crown Court on March 19. Nazir, 37, entered the sheltered accommodation in Ascot on last November and raided the pensioner's handbag for money.

Nazish Nair

Another resident spotted the thief and confronted her before she made excuses about what she

Scene taped off as firefighters attend Sarasas restaurant incident

A section of Uxbridge Road was closed off after firefighters tackled a blaze at a restaurant in Hayes . Three fire engines rushed to the scene at Sarasas restaurant after they were called at 12.21pm on Friday (March 30). Hillingdon Police warned of traffic delays in Hayes after a section of the busy main road was taped and cordoned off. Firefighters were pictured climbing up ladders to extinguish the flames on the exterior of the

South Indian restaurant. London Fire Brigade confirmed they sent firefighters to the scene, equipped with a hose reel, cutting gear and an extension ladder. A spokesman said: "A restaurant sign was on fire and 25% of the sign was damaged by fire."

was doing. The victim, a 78-yearold woman, who was relying on Nazir to look after her, then returned to the property to realise her purse had been stolen from her handbag. She then found that it had been stuffed down the back of her sofa with an unknown value of cash missing. Investigating officer, detective constable Martin

Key, based at Maidenhead police station, said: "Nobody should feel at risk in their own home, especially from people who are in a position of trust. "I hope that this conviction will help give closure to our victim and help reassure the most vulnerable in our community that we will do our utmost to protect them." Nazir was charged with the offence on January 12.

'Illegal immigrants' found in lorry at M1 services

Fifteen adults and one child have been found in the back of a lorry which was transporting shoes from Belgium. The group was discovered at Toddington Services on the M1 in Bedfordshire this morning. Welfare checks on

the individuals were carried out by the East of England Ambulance Service. Bedfordshire Police said the group was being "held on suspicion of being illegal immigrants and will be handed over to the UK Border Agency".

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7th April 2018

Girlguiding Wealdstone take part in sleepover for Irma victims

The Girlguiding Wealstone Division sleepover at Stanmore Library

Girl Guide division held a sleepover with 3,000 young girls and women across the country to mark their global community. The Girlguiding Wealstone Division participated in an international sleepover at Stanmore Library, Northwest London, as part of World Thinking Day. This gave the opportunity to guides to “think of each other”. They raised money for girlguide members in the Caribbean who had been affected by Hurricane Irma in the previous year. Troops from Stanmore, Belmont, Queensbury, Wealdstone and Harrow Weald were among those

who took part. Portfolio holder for community culture and resident engagement, Cllr Sue Anderson attended the event. She said, “It was really wonderful to see so many Brownies and Guides enjoying their sleepover in Stanmore library. I am really proud that we were able to accommodate the group in our beautiful refurbished library. I hope this will be the first of many opportunities for local community groups to engage with our library service.” Units across the region have collectively raise approximately £23,000 for the hurricane victims.

Muslim beauty queen will be the first Miss England contestant to wear a hijab A cabbie's daughter is to become the first hijabwearing Muslim to compete in Miss England. Maria Mahmood, 20, who is through to the semis of the beauty pageant, is odds-on to reach the final. If she wins, she will compete in Miss World. Maria, from Birmingham, says she is supported by her friends, family and the wider Muslim community but expects some backlash from “old-timers”. While a Muslim has previously been crowned Miss England, Maria is the first hijab-wearer to take part. The psychology student bagged a place in the semi-final after finishing runner-up in last week’s Miss Birmingham – her first-ever pageant. Maria, who wants to be a social worker, will take part in Miss England’s swimwear round, wearing a burkini. She said her dad, a black cab driver, and mum, who works parttime in a school, have been supportive. “When I came runnerup, they were delighted for me. I’ve got three brothers and they’ve also been so good. Most people have been supportive. “There have been a few negative comments and I’m fully expecting some criticism from old-timers

Maria Mahmood

and conservatives. "But what I’m doing is empowering for Muslim women. I’m anticipating most people will back me. She added: “Obviously, I’m not going to parade on stage in a bikini as that is going against my religion and beliefs. I’ll wear a burkini.” Miss England director Angie Beasley said: “We’re delighted Maria will be wearing a hijab. It’s the first time that we’ve had a hijab-wearer taking part.” The Miss England semi-final will be held in Newark, Notts, in July. Hammasa Kohistani was the first Muslim crowned Miss England, aged 18 in 2005.


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COMMUNITY

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7th April 2018

Founding Trustee of City Sikhs, Onkardeep Singh, receives MBE Onkardeep Singh, one of the Founding Trustees of City Sikhs, has received an MBE from Prince William for services to the community particularly young people. The investiture ceremony took place at Buckingham Palace on Friday 2 nd March 2018. City Sikhs is one of the leading Sikh organisations in Britain with over 6,000 members, and it gives a voice to progressive Sikhs in the UK. It runs several inspirational events throughout the year, such as the renowned Recipes for Success panel discussions where leading figures of industry and politics give career advice based on their own life experiences and help promote personal development. Onkardeep has been volunteering for the last 15 years in various capacities within the Sikh community across the country. During that time, he has been committed to building better interfaith relations and promoting dialogue between people of different religions. He has spoken at leading faith festivals such as Limmud

(Jewish), Greenbelt (Christian) and Living Islam (Muslim), and his work has focussed on the foundation of youth-centred projects which unite people of faith in a common cause. Following the ceremony, Onkardeep said: “I feel surprised, honoured and privileged at getting this MBE, and it would never have been possible without the hard work and dedication of all the people that I’ve been lucky to volunteer with. The charity work I’ve done has been varied, but the one continuing theme has been about creating a world and society that works better together. I hope to continue to do what I can towards this goal and look forward to working with many others in the future to help achieve that.”

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Murti-Pratishtha Mahotsav at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Tokyo Between 1952 and 1970, His Holiness Yogiji Maharaj often said, “The whole world will chant the name of Swaminarayan. Satsang will spread to America, Japan, Germany, Russia….” Today, these prophetic words can be seen to be coming true. In 1984, His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj visited Japan for the very first time with a group of sadhus. Shri Popatbhai Chokshi, a devotee residing in Kobe, hosted Swamishri. Then, in 1986, Pujya Mahant Swami, Pujya Ishwarcharan Swami and a few sadhus visited Japan. Thereafter, in 1992, Pujya Viveksagar Swami and, in 1994, Pujya Swayamprakash Swami (Doctor Swami) visited Japan with some sadhus, and conducted many satsang assemblies and visited the homes of devotees and well-wishers. Since then, BAPS sadhus have visited Japan on a few occasions to nurture the satsang. In 2015, during a visit to Tokyo by BAPS sadhus, Kuldeepbhai Mehta and his family were inspired to join the Satsang. In December 2015, at Sarangpur in Pramukh Swami Maharaj's presence, Kuldeepbhai proposed that a mandir be inaugurated in Tokyo. Then, he procured a property and dedicated the ground floor for the mandir. On 16 April 2017, in Ahmedabad, His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj performed the Vedic murti-pratishtha rituals of the murtis of Shri AksharPurushottam Maharaj, Shri Radha-

BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Tokyo, Japan

Krishna Dev and the Guru Parampara for the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir in Tokyo, Japan. On the morning of 31 March 2018, Pujya Ishwarcharan Swami performed the Vedic murti-pratishtha

Pujya Ishwarcharan Swami performs the pratishtha rituals

ceremony of the murtis which had earlier been consecrated by His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj in 2017. Over 120 devotees from Tokyo, Kobe, Kofu, Kyoto, Osaka and Yokohama participated in the Vedic rituals. After the rituals, Ishwarcharan

Swami addressed the assembly, “Bhagwan Swaminarayan and Aksharbrahman Gunatitanand Swami manifested on this earth to liberate everyone from the darkness of maya. That work was carried forward by Brahmaswarup Bhagatji Maharaj, Brahmaswarup Shastriji Maharaj, Brahmaswarup Yogiji Maharaj, Brahmaswarup Pramukh Swami Maharaj and is being continued today by Pragat Brahmaswarup Mahant Swami Maharaj. Brahmaswarup Yogiji Maharaj had said on many occasions that the whole world will chant the Swaminarayan mantra and that mandirs will come up in America, Japan, Germany and Russia. At that time, no one could imagine that there would be a mandir in Japan because there were no devotees here. But Yogiji Maharaj was no ordinary person and his words were not ordinary. Today, we are all witness to this mandir here in Tokyo. And Yogiji Maharaj will be extremely happy. “Today, with the grace of Param Pujya Pramukh Swami Maharaj, Param Pujya Mahant Swami Maharaj and the dedication of Shri Kuldeepji, this beautiful mandir has come up. The murtis are divine. God is totally present here in these murtis, and all who come here, do darshan, do dandvats, do seva, do satsang, will all be blessed. Japan is blessed. Kuldeepbhai Mehta and his family have earned the blessings of Maharaj and Swami through their seva and devotion.”

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UK Traffic halted as family and friends pay roadside tribute to biker Rikesh Surani

SP

(Image: Leicester Media/Russell Thorpe)

Sunetra Senior

Bikers tribute to their friend Rikesh Surani

Traffic was brought to a standstill on a city ring road for 15 minutes as hundreds of mourners gathered at the spot where a motorcyclist was killed in a crash. Police officers stopped drivers in Hamilton Way on the Leicester outer ring road as 200 friends and family paid tribute to 27year-old Rikesh Surani yesterday. Mr Surani, from Leicester, who lost his life in a collision with a silver Kia estate, on March 25, was a member of the Leicester-based riders club called The Unit. More than 50 bikes lined the road as members met family and friends at the crash site, between Tesco Extra and the Porsche garage in Hamilton, at 10.15am. Russell Thorpe, a committee member in The Unit, said: “Rikesh, who was known by his nickname Rome, was a true

gentleman and everyone is devastated at his loss. The sheer number of people at the roadside memorial just goes to show how popular and respected Rome was.” Mr Thorpe said the bikers met at the Porsche garage then went in slow formation to the crash site. There they met family and friends where floral tributes were laid down. The mourners all observed a minute’s silence before Mr Surani’s wife and best friend released gold and purple balloons spelling Rome. After the service more than a hundred people went to a wake at the Sinroja Motorcycles in Thurmaston. The Unit bike group was formed in 2014 and has 75 members. Club members meet for fun rides and for charity fundraising events. Police are appealing for any witnesses to the crash at about 10.15am on March 25 to call them on 101.

Sikh temple named alongside Stonehenge as top faith places

Europe's largest Gurdwara features alongside iconic locations such as Stonehenge and Canterbury Cathedral in a new listing of England's most important faith buildings. The Guru Nanak Gurdwara, in Smethwick, has been chosen alongside nine other places of faith to feature in A History of England in 100 Places which is being run by campaign body Historic England. A citation by Historic England said the Gurdwara, which was was built in the 1990s, housed one of the largest congregations in the UK and was the biggest in Europe.

"It continues to expand with Smethwick's growing Sikh population," it added. "Community is at the heart of the Sikh faith and Gurdwaras are a focal point for communities to come together and get closer to God." The initiative features ten significant locations across ten categories and has already seen Moseley's pre-fabricated houses and Shakespeare's birthplace included in the homes and gardens and music and literature categories respectively. Edgbaston MP Preet Gill put forward Guru Nanak Gurdwara has a potential finalist.

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MODERN RELATIONSHIPS EXPERT VENA RAMPHAL: Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

“It’s a good opportunity to look at relationship Never mind the latest iPhone Vena, dynamics under a a leading media relationship expert microscope,” Vena is on the scene to revamp the higher added. “It’s obvivalues of romance, human interacously an intense tion and salubrious sex life. Her setting and this signature approach is one of means we can really warmth and wisdom and has been tease out the issues.” hailed as highly holistic. Currently the co-host of Channel 4’s show, Interestingly, Vena has Seven Year Switch, a programme also counselled many which has taken “4 couples whose celebrity couples, relationships were in trouble to appeared on several Thailand for 2 weeks, and switched radio and tv segments, and led their respective partners,” Vena is many relationestablishing the combined power of ship-focussed emotional healing and the physical workshops, classes traditions of the Kama Sutra and and retreats. She classical Indian dance, in the ‘passion necessarily rescoaching’ mainstream. “You can onates with people ascertain a lot from the way couples at a deep and perrelate to each other physically and in sonal level. “My aim the bedroom,” the PhD graduate in is always authenticiPhilosophy, Gender and Classical ty. It isn’t about what is morally right Indian Dance shared openly with us. or wrong, but what is true to the sit“The way bodies interact and uation. What really works for you in a communicate tell me everything I couple? A lot of the complication need to know about the whole relationship. From a Yogic perspective, with love in modern times arises what happens during sex is that your with the advent of technology. ‘prana’ becomes subtly intertwined People switch each other off and stop with another’s. This basically means relating to each other significantly. you can no longer hide yourself. They are too busy being glued to Sexual interaction is the beating their screens and do not spend heart of a relationship and everyenough time with each other. My rule thing is reflected in that. I came to is no phones in the bedroom! It fosthe study of relationships through ters alienation instead of understanding and connection. We need a dance so this has honed my affiliadigital detox!” In fact, Vena went furtion with romance quite intuitively.” So, it seems if touch and tactile love ther to assert that the pitfalls of is missing from your relationship, monotony and routine have less to you might at once be experido with being overly familiar encing romantic dysfuncwith and more to do with tion day to day. “As I’ve overlooking a partner: There is such observed, especially “I don’t believe you a stigma around with one couple, can become ‘too’ break-ups and divorce, Nicky and Simon, on acquainted. You especially in the South our show, Seven can be familiar Asian community, but Year Switch, relawith someone’s tionships suffer habits and patthese are just as necessary when there is a lack terns but you to cultivating an eventually of healthy commumight not be congood relationship as nication,” Vena connected to them – focussing on the ways in tinued. “A lot of the in fact, those can which closeness can be become a convetime people know nient distraction. The they need to communienhanced. answer is in the quality cate but they simply don’t of attention: the sort of know how. Walls can go up attention a couple might have and become difficult to surmount. One needs to identify where the paid each other when they first startissue lies and talk through it, or ed dating.” Vena’s incisive vision and they’ll find themselves falling into thorough knowledge of her subject repeated arguments. The trick is to area also comes from her own jourunderstand where that resentment is ney and discovery of the importance coming from and then carefully talk of self-growth. “I actually went it through.” Vena has proactively through a particularly difficult devised a 5-step guide, including divorce in my early thirties and it really taught me the feel of a healthy writing down a clear script on imporrelationship. It was better to let go of tant talking points, to help couples heavy emotional chains, and couraaccomplish this to be found here : http://venaramphal.com/media/2018-03geously take the first steps forward 15-free-guide-difficult-conversationsto find someone better suited. There made-easy-in-5-simpleis such a stigma around break-ups steps.“Sometimes the underlying and divorce, especially in the South Asian community, but these are just problem can be as small as your partas necessary to cultivating an evenner always leaving the toothpaste tually good relationship as focussing cap off or stems from bigger issues on the ways in which closeness can such as how you approach savings be enhanced. The trajectory can be and finance.” messy but that’s fine. It’s how we navigate it that matters. Newly *** divorced women, in particular, can Indeed, the end goal of pulling the start glowing when they truly relationship switcheroo on Channel embrace a split. The emotions are 4’s Seven Year Switch is to “help the cathartic and when they flow, they individuals better themselves and result in a sort of freedom. The heart identify what they might have been does not line up feelings neatly and doing wrong in their prior relationmove them on. Practically, you’ve got ships” by giving them perspective.

TLIGHT

to grieve and learn from what we’re feeling. People want a fairy-tale homestead but this has to have a firm foundation.” Throwing divorce parties alongside the gentle tips and offering of therapeutic support, Vena then epitomises her great grasp of an interconnecting inner landscape. If you can be honest with yourself in your entirety, she shows us, you can achieve a meaningful intimacy with someone else. What is a chief cause of stagnation in relationships? I envisage a couple standing next to each other. We want another person to look in the same direction with: in terms of career, family and social life. We get caught up on the treadmill of life and do not then spend enough time facing each other. It doesn’t matter how successful you are, if you don’t check in, you’ll begin to drift apart. Can you give a celebrity couple who are good role mod-

els? We are all human and have similar issues and so you never really know with people in the spotlight. They have the same worries as the rest of us. We do tend to project our fears and insecurities onto others and so a better response to this Q is to urge people to stay compassionate and keep looking at themselves. What are some good, go-to signifiers of a healthy relationship? Smiling, laughter and just feeling bubbly; a sense of romance. Do you get a cheeky, playful feeling when you think of your partner? Without being dependent on them, do they generally improve your self-esteem and make you feel good about who you are in a grounded, healthy way? If you’re feeling diminished in any way it’s not good for you; a sense of ease is important too. That’s not to say becoming lazy around someone, but just that they allow you to feel alright in your own skin. Finally, know your deal-breakers and your boundaries. Do you do much work with women rights? Everyone should be treated with respect and love. Each person needs to be recognised in their full humanity, and perhaps informed by my dance background, I’m more an artist than an activist. I help women feel a strong sense of awakening in workshops and teach impeachable regard for the body. Many women are in psychologically, even physically, abusive relationships and don’t even know it. It’s normalised. Finally, what’s your favourite part of the profession? Plugging people back into themselves, from self-care to discovering their inner beauty. It’s satisfying to see people smile more and see a new lightness in their step. Helping them regain mastery of their life and joy. Seven Year Switch is now airing on C4 every week on Tuesdays at 9.15pm.


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Asian Voice |

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7th April 2018

Pro-Corbyn Facebook groups full of anti-Jewish comments The Labour Party leader, Jeremy Corbyn is entangled in a new antisemitism scandal as a dossier reveals violent, abusive and anti-Jewish comments on Facebook groups allegedly calling out to his most ardent supporters. It is said that 12 senior staff working for Corbyn, as well as the shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, are members of groups on Facebook which contains violent and anti-semitic comments, such as praises for Adolf Hitler and threats to kill Prime Minister Theresa May. The most all-encompassing inquiry conducted into 20 if the biggest groups supporting Corbyn on Facebook, with a total of 400,000 members, found that there were routine attacks on Jewish people, as well as denial of the Holocaust, with someone claiming that the deaths of 6 million Jews in the Holocaust “was a big lie!” Whistleblowers compiled this dossier for over two months along with The Sunday Times. It is said they uncovered over 2,000 anti-semitic, racist, violent, misogynistic and abusive messages. Many leading British Jews, who could be pertained as the world's most successful ethnic minority, have written to Corbyn with three main complaints: that the Labour Party consists of antisemitism, that the Labour leader allegedly ignored such harmful attitudes, and that previous attempts

to deal with anti-semitism has proven to be unacceptable or inadequate. Former MP, Ivor Caplin, who speaks on behalf of the Jewish Labour Movement said, “The fact remains that anti-semites have found a home in the party and many of them use influential online groups to feed poison into the party's bloodstream. The party must act in concert with Facebook to deal with this.” Jeremy Corbyn issued an apology to Jewish people in a letter to Jewish leaders. In the letter, he said, “I recognise antisemitism has surfaced within the Labour Party, and has too often been dismissed as simply a matter of a few bad apples. This has caused pain and hurt to Jewish members of our party and to the wider Jewish community in Britain. I am sincerely sorry for the pain which has been caused, and pledge to redouble my efforts to bring this anxiety to an end.”

Backlash over Jewdas Furthermore, Jeremy Corbyn also faces criticism for attending an event organised by a left-wing Jewish group, Jewdas, who are said to be critical of more mainstream Jewish organisations. It comes after the Labour leader pledged “watertight” inquiry into claims of antisemitism within the Labour Party. One Labour MP has labelled Corbyn's actions as “irresponsible and dangerous”; however, a lead-

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn

ing Corbyn supporter has stated that his attendance at the event was “not as significant as it's being made out.” The founder of Momentum, Jon Lansman said, “It was his night off, he had nothing in his official diary, his office didn't know he was there.” Lansman went on to say that “Jeremy [Corbyn] is a lifelong anti-racist” and that he was keen to meet the leaders of “mainstream Jewish organisations”. A Labour Party spokesperson confirmed that the Labour leader had attended the Seder event organised by Jewdas. “He [Corbyn] wrote to the Board of Deputies and Jewish Leadership Council last week to ask for an urgent formal meeting to discuss tackling antisemitism in the Labour Party and in society.” On the other hand, the president of the Board if Deputies of British Jews, Jonathan Arkush said, “If Jeremy Corbyn goes to their event, how can we take his stated commitment to be an ally against anti-semitism seriously?”

Malala's four-day Pakistan trip resonates triumph and courage Reshma Trilochun The youngest Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Malala Yousafzai, made a brief yet substantial visit to her homeland, Pakistan, six years after militants attempted to kill her for advocating girls' education. In her four-day visit to Pakistan, which came out of the blue, she visited the Prime Minister House shortly after her arrival where she expressed that it was a “dream come true”. However, this “dream” came with many limitations as there was tight security that controlled people's access to her and vice versa, as her movements were guarded in staunch secrecy. Malala said, “I have never been so excited for

Malala Yousafzai

anything. I've never been so happy before. I miss everything about Pakistan... right from the rivers, the mountains, to even the dirty streets and the garbage around our house, and my friends and how we used to have gossip and talk about our school life, to how we used to fight with our neighbours.” She visited her old home and school in the Swat valley, a mountain

region northwest of Islamabad. After being shot in the head by a Taliban gunman in 2012, she has made the UK her home. She moved with her family to Birmingham and now studies at the prestigious Oxford University. Her international campaign to improve girls' literacy not only made her a household name, but also earned her the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014, at the age of 17 making her the youngest ever recipient. She had set up a charity to support education advocacy groups with focus on Pakistan, Jordan, Nigeria, Kenya and Syria. Malala, along with her father Ziauddin Yousafzai, mother Toor Pekai, and two brothers visited their home in Mingora. They flew in a military helicopter to Mingora, accom-

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Modi returns to London Continued from page 1

CHOGM participation The Prime Minister will arrive in London from Sweden and hold a series of bilateral meetings, including with British Prime Minister Theresa May and meet Queen Elizabeth II expected on April 18. On April 19 and 20, Modi will take part in the CHOGM discussions along with heads of government from other 52 membercountries of the Commonwealth. The visit has been dubbed "historic" within diplomatic circles as this would mark an Indian Prime Minister's presence at CHOGM for the first time since 2010. Modi has been reportedly invited personally by the Queen in a letter addressed to him. The Heads of Government Meeting on April 19 and 20 will be preceded by the Commonwealth Business Forum between April 1618, which will bring together hundreds of business people and stakeholders from across the 53 Commonwealth countries. India’s Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will be here from 12th April and will be addressing an event at the Chatham House, London, on 12th evening.

Groups to protest Modi visit However, same as 2015, a few UK-based groups have indicated plans to hold protests at some of the venues Modi is likely to visit. Self-styled leaders of the Sikh community in Britain will join hands with Kashmiri separatists this month to protest against Modi's decision to attend the Commonwealth Summit in London and Windsor. As was mentioned in an Indian local report, these leaders are panied by federal minister, Maryam Aurangzeb. It was indeed, a very emotional affair for the family who stepped back into the house after six years. In an interview to the BBC, Faridul Haq Haqqani, who now lives in Malala's old house said, “Ziauddin [Yousafzai] prostrated himself on the lawn of the house; he kissed the ground and then picked up the soil and rubbed it on his eyes. There was silence in the house that lasted several minutes.” Amid tight security, Malala managed to meet her neighbourhood friends, who were brought by officials. Haqqani spoke about

assumed to have links with Pakistan-based militants, including Wadhwa Singh of Babbar Khalsa International. Protests will also include a demonstration by the Sikh Federation UK, which says it wants to register its protest over what it believes is the torture of 31 year old Scottish Sikh Jagtar Singh Johal in Nabha Central Jail in Punjab. Mark Field,

Minister of state in-charge of Asia and the Pacific in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), had said during a Parliament debate in the UK earlier this month that he would "try" to see if the issue of Johal's arrest can be raised with Modi during CHOGM. Also, information on the Government Whips' Office, House of Lords website leads to believe that Lord Nazir Ahmed plans to raise a question on Kashmir and Punjab in the House of Lords on April 16. It says, “Lord Ahmed to ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to encourage the Government of India to withdraw its formal reservations against the right of self determination so that the conflicts in Indiancontrolled Kashmir, Punjab and other territories in the north east of the Indian sub-continent can move towards a peaceful resolution in a democratic manner, underpinned by international law.” Malala saying, “I could see that her thoughts had matured. She felt restrained by the presence of security, and promised she will come without security next time.” “I Am Not Malala Day” Malala Yousafzai has many well-wishers in Pakistan as well as detractors. A group of private schools in Pakistan declared Friday to be “I Am Not Malala Day” as they allegedly believe that her ideologies are “anti-Islam and anti-Pakistan”. This, however, leaves Malala perplexed. In an interview to the media, she said, “I just don't know anything I've

Boris Johnson serves recipe for success with Commonwealth youth UK's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, rolled up his sleeves alongside chefs at Amaya Indian restaurant to cook up a feast for a Commonwealth Big Lunch. A series of community lunches are celebrating the diversity, creativity and human networks of the Commonwealth through great food. 60 per cent of the Commonwealth’s 2.4 billion citizens are under 30, Mr Johnson invited Chevening scholars, representing the next generation of leaders, to share a curry and talk about ensuring the alliance of nations remains relevant for future generations. Johnson said: “From Mombasa to Montreal, Yaounde to Wellington, Commonwealth Big Lunches are being celebrated across the globe. “I want everyone across the British Isles to roll their sleeves up, connect with friends and neighbours and savor the great culinary heritage of the Commonwealth. “In a world faced with huge global challenges, this 2.4 billion strong network is more important than ever. April’s summit will help us collectively ensure a more prosperous, secure, and fairer future for all citizens.” A key theme of the CHOGM summit in London will be boosting trade between members. C o m m o n w e a l t h economies have expanded twice as fast as European ones – by an average of 4.4% every year. The summit will also discuss how to improve security cooperation, girls’ education and protecting wildlife. Commonwealth Big Lunches are happening across the 53 different nations from 12 March Commonwealth Day until Sunday 22 April 2018. said that makes me antiPakistan or anti-Islam. Islam has taught me the importance of peace. Islam has taught me the importance of education. The first word of Islam, or the first word of the Koran, is 'Iqra' which means 'read'.” This was indeed a landmark visit. Not only did the trip give Malala an opportunity to visit her homeland and cherish reminiscent moments, but indirectly her visit connotes that she has prevailed by not backing out as she stands tall and triumphant by strongly sticking by what she believes in. Her journey is one of hope which resonates strength and optimism even in times of despair.


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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

Dalit youth brutally killed in Saurashtra for riding horse A young Dalit man in Bhavnagar, Gujarat, was brutally bludgeoned to death last Thursday, allegedly by members of the upper caste. Reason? They were enraged at him for riding a horse. As shocking as it is to comprehend, Pradeep Rathod, 21, was beaten to death by a group of people from the Darbar community in Timbi village. He had reportedly been receiving threats from the local Darbar men ever since he began horse riding about a fortnight ago. However, Pradeep took the threats and continued to ride the horse in the village. Last week, when his horse returned without him, his family got suspicious. His father, Kalu Rathod, who lodged a complaint at Umrala police station said, “On searching, I found his body lying in a pool of blood near the farm; his head was badly smashed.” While he remains certain that horse riding was the main reason he lost his young son, authorities are investigating different angles. Umrala police arrested three main

Dalit youth Pradeep Rathod was brutally killed by men of upper caste

accused after the family refused to cremate the deceased until the arrests were made. Several human rights activists helped build pressure on the authorities. Natubha Darbar and his friends are accused of threatening the family when they bought the Rs 30,000 worth horse. As case of murder has been registered against the three. “My son's love for horses led to his murder. About a week ago, when I was riding the horse with my son, one of

the persons from the upper caste Kshatriya community warned us not to ride the horse in the village. He said that people of Dalit community cannot ride horses, only Kshatriyas can ride horses. He also threatened to kill us if we did not sell the horse,” the complaint read. Bottom of India's deeply entrenched social heirarchy system, the Dalit community still endures disturbing discrimination in all parts of the country. Rural parts

of Gujarat still to this day, boast a feudal mindset, especially Saurashtra, where upper castes do not take too kindly to those of the lower sections. The news came merely days after the government of India decided to file a review against the Supreme Court judgment diluting provisions of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. News of the unfortunate incident spread like

More British visas to Indians, focus on cyber security, ocean development, trade Ajay Umat While Britain based Non Residential Indians are excited to welcome and host Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Britain has expressed very strong willingness to strengthen bilateral relations with India in many sectors. Modi is scheduled to visit Britain to participate in the biennial Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) being held in London in April. Modi will begin his three day visit to Britain from April 18. Britain and India are expected to discuss and push for bilateral agreements in the fields of Cyber Security, Ocean Development, increase of work VISAs to Indian professionals and students. Both the countries are likely to consider free trade agreement also to boost bilateral business ties. Talking ahead of CHOGM, Mark Field, the British minister of state for Asia and the Pacific for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, said that Britain has increased its focus on Indian professionals, students and on Indian trade ties. He said that UK and

India bilateral relations are looking very positive and going further the future looks even brighter. Ahead of Commonwealth summit at London in which 53 Head of the nations are going to par-

fessionals. Field said that pluralism and common values are shared by both the countries’ institutions. Britain is oldest democracy and India the largest democracy in the world. Field said that there are

Mark Field

Tariq Mahmood Ahmad

ticipate, the minister added that Britain is welcoming Indians in all possible sphere of bilateral relations. He said that the both the governments are working on a number of sectors but the focus areas include ocean sustainability, plastics, cyber security, quality education and healthcare. Britain is very liberal in granting visa to Indian students and the number of student visa has registered an increase of 27 per cent. Field said that Britain has also decided to give more work visa to the pro-

15,00,000 Indians living in Britain of them 6,00,000 are in London. Culture, sports and scientific bilateral relations are very important, the minister added. Trade Relations Trade and Investment point of view India is the fourth largest G20 country investing in Britain. The total volume of Indian business in Britain is more than combined volume of business from France and Germany. “30% Indian companies are investing in information technology. Indian Telecom companies are generating quality job

opportunities in the country and Indian companies have generated over 10,000 jobs in Britain in the recent years,” Field said. Baron of Wimbledon Tariq Mahmood Ahmad, the British Minister of State for the Commonwealth and United Nations at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office stressed that both the countries must work on building stronger trade and tourism relations. He said that India is poised to become the world’s third largest economy by 2028 and Britain is positive to be India’s strongest business and cultural partner. Baron Ahmad said that Indian diaspora will play a major role in building bilateral relations between the two countries. Lord Baron said that London is not only the financial hub of the world but the city is also the hub for various fields including insurance, legal services, consultancy and creative arts. Thousands of bright Indian students study in London based educational institutes and Britain wants this talent to be a part of Britain’s growth.

wildfire, and national parties jumped in to give their two pennies' worth. The Congress Twitter handle shared the news saying, “The BJP must hang its head in shame. Is this the "Gujarat Model" it boasts of?” Even the Chief Minister of Karnataka took a dig at BJP President Amit Shah. He tweeted, “Shocking inhumanity towards Dalits in Gujarat! Yet, a certain Gujarati gentleman comes here with a bag full of #Jumlas & promises heaven to Dalits. If they question him, they are branded as Cong goons. Kannadigas will not make the mistake of trusting this.” With the Opposition using a youth's death to their benefit, a twist in the story suggested the death was not related to the victim's caste. Bhavnagar police said primary investigation revealed ownership of horse wasn't the only reason of Pradeep's death. Issues related to eve-teasing and several complaints about objectionable behaviour of the boy came

to fore. According to police, villagers had complaint that Rathod often used to perform stunts on the horse and his motorcycle after seeing girls passing from the streets of the village. Some even said that when confronted over such behaviour, he used to fight with them. There is never a good reason for murder. Masses in India are known to take law on their own hands. For whatever reason the youth was murdered, it comes as a tragedy that no one is addressing the real issue. Statistically, 180 million Dalits reside in India. Crimes against the socially repressed community has seen a 66 per cent growth in the last decade. It is said that a crime is committed against a Dalit every 15 minutes, and approximately six Dalit women are raped every day. With the Opposition milking in on such incidents, and driving constant propaganda to further caste divide, focus is taken away from the fact that people are dying each day.

PM Modi hails Kutchi Leva Patel community

Modi addresses Kutchi Leva Community in Nairobi through video conference

Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauded the role of Kutchi Leva Patel community in the development of East Africa, calling Indians living abroad country's “permanent ambassadors”. Addressing silver jubilee celebrations of the Shree Kutchi Leva Patel Samaj in Nairobi, Kenya via video conferencing, Modi commended contribution of the community in various welfare activities and development of East Africa. He recalled the role of members of Indian community in Kenya's freedom movement. Addressing the gather-

ing in Gujarati, he said, “Kutch which was once considered a deserted place, has been converted into a prime tourist destination.” He also highlighted the double engine strength of the Centre and the state government in carrying out the development activities in the region. “The region has received thousands of crore rupees of investment in last few years.” In the address, Modi also invited people in the gathering to next year's Kumbh Mela to experience the cultural and spiritual tradition of India.


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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

Govt unveils plans to sell 76% stake in Air India

The government has unveiled plans to sell up to 76 per cent stake in Air India and transfer the management control to private players, starting the ambitious strategic disinvestment process for the debtladen national carrier. The Civil Aviation Ministry issued a detailed preliminary information memorandum on the stake sale, saying the proposed disinvestment would include profit-making Air India Express and joint venture AIATSL. Starting off the disinvestment exercise, Expression of Interest (EoI) has been sought from different entities, including foreign airlines. While the government would retain 26 per cent stake in the national carrier, the winning bidder would be required to stay invested in the airline for at least three years. The last date of sub-

mission of EoI is May 14 and intimation to the qualified interest bidders would be made on May 28. Bidding can be done as a single player or as part of a consortium. Bidder should have a minimum net worth of £500 million and the requirement is subject to certain conditions depending on the class of entities. The Ministry has said that each consortium member should have positive profit after tax in at least three of the immediately preceding five financial years from the EoI

deadline. It said, “However, if the member of the consortium is a scheduled airline operator in India, the condition to meet positive profit after tax shall not apply to such member, provided shareholding of such member is restricted to maximum of 51 per cent of paid up equity share capital of the consortium. In case of a foreign airline, the requirement to meet positive profit after tax requirement shall remain applicable.” Bids by management and employees of companies participating directly

or by forming a consortium would be considered subject to guidelines issued by the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM). The memorandum stated that the four other subsidiaries of the airline, Air India Engineering Services Ltd (AIESL), Air India Air Transport Services Ltd (AIATSL), Hotel Corporation of India (HCI), and Airline Allied Services Ltd (AASL), would be sent off through demerger or any other appropriate mechanisms. “Air India has interests in other entities (Air India Engineering Services, Air India Air Transport Services, Airline Allied Services, and Hotel Corporation of India) which are in the process of being transferred to a separate SPV and will not be a part of the proposed transaction.”

Lord Dholakia urges fair trade with C'wealth countries

During a speech in the House of Lords, Lord Navnit Dholakia thanked the Minister for the Commonwealth, Lord Ahmad for his contributions to Commonwealth Heads of Government collective and the sustainable development goals. He spoke at length about the importance of building good relationships with the Commonwealth friends and about helping trade deals flourish at this crucial time of the country.

FPI inflows in India in FY18 more than halved Foreign portfolio investment in stock markets was down by more than half to £2.60 billion in 2017-18 for fear of faster than expected rate hike by the US Federal Reserve and higher valuations of Indian equities. Overseas investors in comparison, had put in £5.57 billion in equities in 2016-17 after pulling out over £1.40 billion in the preceding fiscal. A sharp turnaround was, however, seen in foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) inflows into debt markets in the just-concluded fiscal as foreign investors put in a whopping £12 billion in the segment against a net outflow of about £730 million in 2016-17.

Lord Navnit Dholakia

“Over the years, we have diluted the importance of

the Commonwealth in the work of the Foreign Office,” Lord Dholakia said as he acknowledged Lord Howell's efforts in bringing the Commonwealth back into the mainstream of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Stressing on the importance of building new trading relationships as Britain is set to leave the European Union, he said, “CHOGM is meeting in London at a crucial time when minds are focused on identifying

countries where trade relations are vital for the prosperity of the United Kingdom. We can no longer afford to ignore our Commonwealth countries in this equation.” He added, “The days of imperial power have gone; we now have to treat these countries as equal partners.” Lord Dholakia also highlighted the importance of nations acting within commonly agreed norms and standards of fairness and ethics.

RBI questions Axis Bank CEO's reappointment The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is said to have raised certain queries regarding the Axis Bank board's proposal to reappoint Shikha Sharma as MD and CEO for a fresh term beginning June 2018. The queries come over eight months after the board approved Sharma's reappointment. “The bank's board follows a standard process on senior appointments, and forwards its recommendations to the regulator. This process is currently in progress and we are unaware of any final decision on this issue. We would like to mention that the correspondence between regulator and bank is strictly private and confidential,” Axis said in a statement. Several competent officers allegedly left the

bank because of Sharma. Sources said RBI has become cautious on executive appointments as it is currently under pressure from the government. It had earlier in March imposed a penalty of £300,000 on Axis for misstating level of NPAs. In a statement, RBI had said that inspection of the bank with reference to its FY16 accounts showed that “violations of various regulations issued by RBI in assessment of NPAs.” The central bank has been taking a tough stance on divergences, imposing penalties on banks for not recognising defaults. ICICI Bank fined The RBI earlier fined ICICI Bank £5.89 million

Shikha Sharma

for violating norms relating to sale of government securities from the heldto-maturity category of its bonds portfolio. This is the highest penalty imposed by RBI on a bank for a single incident. In a release, RBI said that it has imposed a penalty on ICICI Bank for “non-compliance with directions issued by RBI on direct sale of securities from its HTM portfolio and specified disclosure in this regard”.

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Anu Shah bestowed Woman Icon Asia 2018 award

CEO at Rocket Internet, Anu Shah received the prestigious Woman Icon Asia- 2018 award in Singapore on March 16. The honour was an esteemed acknowledgment of her contribution to the start up world and her encouragement to blooming businesses in developing countries. Anu is the co-founder and CEO of Rocket Internet's online staffing platform Ushift, where she caters to 32,000 job seekers and 2000 businesses looking for on-demand workers. Also, her start up incubator EFI Hub continues to effectively help start ups in Africa grow, by connecting them with investors, successful entrepreneurs, and leading experts.

Sebi asks listed cos to split CMD post India's securities and exchange board of India (Sebi) board has taken a number of key decisions, including separating the posts of managing director, chief executive officer and chairman. The decision has made it mandatory for listed companies to disclose reasons for the resignation of auditors and fees paid to them, and reducing the number of companies in which a person could be director to 8 from 10. After accepting the recommendations made by the Uday Kotak panel on corporate governance, the agency also directed the top 1,000 listed companies to have minimum six directors. It asked the top 100 listed companies to webcast annual general meetings. The Sebi board also cut costs for some mutual fund schemes. Industry professionals said the decision to separate the posts would lead to stricter scrutiny of the management by its board. Several companies currently, have merged the two posts and chairman-cumMD, leading to some overlapping of the board and the management. The new recommendation will come into effect from April l1,

2020 for top 500 listed entities. The Sebi board said all listed companies will have to disclose the expertise of its directors and should have at least one independent woman director. Sebi chairman Ajay Tyagi said that while a large number of recommendations by the committee were accepted, some have been referred to government agencies and other regulators. “The board decided to refer certain recommendations to various agencies, considering that the matters involved relate to them. Such recommendations, inter alia, include strengthening the role of ICAI, internal financial controls, adoption of IndAS, treasury stock, governance aspects of PSEs, etc,” a release from the regulator said. Tyagi said out of 80 recommendations, the board accepted 40 without modification, 15 with some modifications, while eight have been referred to government agencies and other departments. He added that in the derivatives market, a framework has been approved that will take care of product suitability for every retail investor who trades in the derivative market.


REAL ESTATE VOICE

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SQUEEZING THE MOST OUT OF A DEAL AsianVoiceNews

Suresh Vagjiani

Sow & Reap London Property Investment

AsianVoiceNewsweekly

We are currently in the process of turning a property into an HMO. The situation we are in is a fall-back position, caused by the current slug in the market in prime locations. The property is a stone throw away from Notting Hill station, one of the crème areas of London. It is only seconds away from Kensington Palace Gardens, which is reported to be UK’s most expensive street.

the viewing numbers have increased substantially, the resultant sales agreed are only marginal. This means there is still a strong interest to purchase in these locations, but that end user buyers are using the environment to be choosier, and the investors segment are looking for opportunistic deals, where there is significant value add, or a deal to be had.

The block is a freehold house, formally owned by a renowned architect who built up a name for himself in the academic world. The property was bought as a probate sale, via an agent with whom we have bought several properties previously.

With the drop in capital values, there is only one other area to explore in regards to making this deal work in the current climate and that is the rentals; and more specifically the HMO route. There is no third way to make money in property.

Prices have decreased in this borough, as with most areas in Central London. Interestingly, although

Our client has a house, located in London, zone 1. It had six bedrooms and was achieving a rent of £1269.23 per week. Now, on face value this was a great income for the property. However, after looking at the layout of the property we discovered that we could achieve a greater income from this property by turning it into an HMO.

This started with a conversation with the owner. Before we spoke to him, we had already done an income and expense projection, and had all the financial information lined up. The figures showed that we could potentially increase his income by around 25%. We met up with him and discussed our ideas and the projected figures; needless to say he was happy to proceed. We already knew the information regarding what changes were needed to the property

BUY TO LET OPPORTUNITY East Finchley, London N2 Purchase Price: £575,000

Specialists in Central London Property Sourcing

At one time, 5% ish used to be the standard yield one would expect when purchasing a property in London. However, as capital values have increased, rents have not kept pace, and therefore, a yield of around 2% and even lower can be expected in central locations.

Ordinarily, the rentals for this kind of property would float around the 2%

The conversion costs for this property will be in the region of about £36k. We will be fitting the property with smart locks which will enable the prospective tenants to open the property with

for the conversion to an HMO, however, we contacted the council before the application was made and explained our intentions. This was done in order to create a working relationship with the council (it is best to have the council on side from day dot).

We turned what was a nice family home with six bedrooms, into a seven bedroom HMO, with a weekly income of a little over £2,000 per week! This is even including a discount for the rooms, as the owner wanted them filled sooner rather than later. Apart from the increased income on the property, other benefits include:

AGONY AGENT IS HERE TO HELP! This week, I thought I would give you another example of a working HMO, which we are managing for one of our clients.

mark. With the HMO model in place the yield would increase to double, which is at around the 4.8% mark. This yield does not allow for the enhanced increase in rent via short term rental, which is allowable for 90 days per room.

After a few basic changes at a cost of around £15K, and some additional costs for improvements, we were ready to open the door to the new HMO with licence pending (council paperwork can take its time).

l When a room is empty there will be only a small dent in the monthly income, not a zero if this was one household l The rooms move in on different days and times, so the rent will come in weekly, not in one bulk

Asian Voice |

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7th April 2018

their smart phones. This ensures we will retain complete control of the asset whilst negating the need to attend every time there is a change in tenancy. Such a system is especially useful when short letting. Ordinarily, this would be facilitated by unsightly key boxes outside of the property, hanging from the rails, which is both ugly and not as secure. My feeling on this property is it will exceed the numbers given above, when the short letting market stabilises. Short letting works off reviews, as the stars and the frequency increases so does the demand for the property. This is a good efficient system, reviewed by the end users themselves. Such a system allows prospects to book even from overseas with confidence.

monthly rent l There is potential to increase the rent every few months, when the room agreements renew

Now, if you would like to know if your property’s

Time will tell what happens with this property.

income could be increased, then please give me a call or drop me an email and we can have a discussion. Richard Bond Lettings Manager Sow & Reap

l Spectacular boutique development with far reaching views over the golf course l The apartment comprises of a generously large and well proportioned living room with an open plan kitchen, two large double bedrooms, two bathrooms and a spacious balcony l Measuring approximately 1,200 sq. ft. l Underground car parking space and an extra visitor’s parking space l Expected resale value is £825,000 Call us now for more information!

0207 993 0103

info@sowandreap.co.uk www.sowandreap.co.uk 27 Gloucester Place, London, W1U 8HU SowandReapProperties

Sowandreapuk

Turning land into cash Get in touch about our land opportunities


20

FINANCIAL VOICE -INDIA

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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

PNB to honour all Nirav scam LoUs

Consultant Editor Financial Voice Alpesh Patel Dear Financial Voice Reader, Wealth is in the mind. When I wrote my first book, there was a very good reason I called it ‘The Mind of a Trader’. Every one of the 10 leading traders of the world I interviewed for the book told me that psychology was key to success and wealth. Detachment Hedge fund manager, Bernard Oppetit, put it this way to me, “Whether I get out at a profit or loss does not matter.” And this surprised me. I expected the world’s leading traders to be more attached to their results and performance. In fact what was a key characteristic of them all was their detachment to the outcomes of their actions; all were far more focused getting the processes right and concentrating on those. Detachment was important for another reason. All those I interviewed were at the top of their professions. They were managers and leaders, not just traders. That sense of mental calm was a critical part of their success. Pat Arbor, Chair of the Chicago Board of trade put it like this, “The trouble with the loss is not only the loss of money but it’s the ego.” But detachment also meant, in the opinion of legend David Kyte, “I think the best traders are those who don’t read the papers’. These are people detached from broader noise in other words. He would look to see, if the bulls ‘running out of steam’ and the bears taking over – regardless of what the news might be or what should be happening. Discipline Linked to detachment, was their discipline. Again, as Oppetit put it, “it takes a lot of patience and energy and motivation”. You need to have a sense of discipline for that. But discipline for what? It was discipline in following their processes to get in and out of a trade as per their processes and system, and not deviate. This means not adding to losing trades in the case of all the hedge fund managers I spoke to. It means not making excuses when you know you are suffering a loss and should exit according to your system. It also means not being greedy when you know the profits have run their course. Key to the psychology was having a systematic approach in mind and following it and ignoring extraneous matters (such as baby needs new shoes) which can play with your mind and seduce you from deviating from your discipline. As Bill Lipschutz, Global Head of Forex at Salomon Brothers put it, “If most traders would learn to sit on their hands, they would make a lot more money.” Tenacity & Fearlessness & Ambition Do not think from these psychology traits, that these leading profitable traders are not passionate. Jon Najarian, a floor trader, put it this way, “Unless you are willing to bang your head against the door until you break through, you are not going to make it.” But these is tenacity and pushing your luck too from a psychology view. David Kyte, another legendary floor trader said, “You make your own luck. If you get in at 50, and it goes to 60, 70, 80, you were lucky and that’s also pushing your luck”. The underlying theme of letting you profits run, not being too fearful either is clear to me. But, Brian Winterflood, who has managed many traders in his life as a City of London legend, noted in the book how important ambition is for success. “You have to have fire in your belly” and yes money is a driver, “in the big environment it was like going to sleep at the coal face, here it is a bit like waking up at a brothel.” His point being you do have to love what you do as a trader to success! Alpesh B Patel For a free online trading www.alpeshpatel.com/apprentice

course

visit

Insolvency resolutions get a boost in India The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India has amended the Insolvency Resolution Process for Corporate Personsthe IBBI Regulations, 2018, to fix a time frame for identifying resolution applicants. As the amended regulation makes it mandatory to identify the applicants by the 105th day, it is said that the resolution process

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can be completed in a timely manner within the stipulated 180 days. There is no deadline currently, by when resolution applicants have to be identified. The identification process and criteria keep changing till the far end of the resolution period generally, which leads to delays in completion of the entire process.

Punjab National Bank has agreed to honour the Letters of Undertaking (LoUs) generated by its employees without authorisation, in a move that will put an end to squabbling between state-owned lenders over losses bore from the Nirav Modi fraud. The bank has agreed to honour half the fraudulent LoUs that amount up to £650 million, by March 31, and the remaining when they fall due. “This measure will ensure that India's banking system at large has the least possible disruption owing to the unfortunate fraud and banking operations will continue to function smoothly,” PNB said in a statement. Banks whose overseas branches were depended on the fraudulent LoUs to lend to offshore companies that

Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi dealt with, were squabbling with PNB to get lender acknowledge liability. The bank had initially

Nirav Modi

refrained on the grounds that the bank had not sanctioned any credit limits and that there had been lapses on the part of the offshore banks in lending against the LoUs. The move will now ensure that the loss on account of the Nirav

Modi/Mehul Choksi fraud is localised with one public sector bank. While PNB had not lent against the LoUs to Modi/Choksi group companies, it can still pursue recovery from them. In the first lot, PNB acknowledged 352 LoUs worth £650 million to seven banks. While other banks will not have to make provisions in respect of loans against LoU, a consortium of 31 lenders will need to make provisions on loans of close to £700 million made to Modi and Choksi group companies. PNB has said it would complete integration of its SWIFT system with the bank's core banking system (CBS) ahead of the April 30 deadline stipulated by the Reserve Bank of India for all banks. This is possible because the bank has

ICICI CEO’s husband, Dhoot face CBI probe The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has registered a preliminary enquiry (PE) into the alleged connection between ICICI Bank MD and CEO Chanda Kochhar's husband Deepak Kochhar and Videocon group chairman Venugopal Dhoot. Sources said the PE will seek to ascertain the veracity of the allegations that Dhoot provided millions of rupees to a firm promoted by Deepak Kochhar and two relatives six months after Videocon group got £35 million as loan from ICICI Bank in 2012. The amount was part of the £4 billion loan Videocon group secured from a consortium of 20 banks led by SBI. It is reported that Dhoot gave £6.4 million in 2010 through a fully owned entity to NuPower Renewables Pvt Ltd (NRPL) he had set up with Deepak Kochhar and two of his relatives. It is

also alleged that he transferred proprietorship of the company to a trust owned by Deepak Kochhar for Rs 9,00,000 six months after he received the loan from ICICI Bank. Sources clarified that Chanda Kochhar's name was not mentioned in the PE, which was registered a month ago, however, it does mention “unknown bank officials”. A preliminary inquiry is the first step to investigate an alleged act of corruption or fraud. The CBI collects materi-

The mid-level bank frauds – one between Rs1,00,000 and 25,00,000 - have nearly tripled in the last five years, the Reserve Bank of India’s reply to an RTI application said. Banks reported a 177% increase in frauds at £2.39 billion, up from £864.9 million in 2013. In the last one year, frauds have grown 30% from £1.87 million in 2016. In 2015, PNB had accounted for 11% of total banking frauds. The same set of information was requested under RTI for 2016 and 2017, but the RBI said ‘bank-wise data on fraud is not available for disclosure under Section 28 of Banking Regulation Act, 1949’. Frauds from Mumbai have been increasing in the last five years, with

Maharashtra now accounting for 41% of total banking frauds in 2017, up from 35% in 2013. When it came to number of fraudulent cases (y-o-y), there has been an 8% increase at 5,078 cases registered in 2017, compared to 4,693 cases in 2016. Chandigarh sees the most high-value frauds in the country - the amount of the scam being much more with respect to the number of cases being registered resulting in a loss of over £5.5 million. Maharashtra and Karnataka saw frauds of about £850,000 per case higher than the national average of £470,000 being lost in every case. States like Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu saw more low-value frauds with average being

Deepak Kochhar and Venugopal Dhoot

al as part of the procedure, to determine if there is prima facie criminality requiring the registration of an FIR. It will be closed if investigators conclude there is not enough basis to register a regular case. Sources said Deepak and Dhoot, along with unnamed officials of the ICICI and other banks who constituted the consortium, will be called for examination soon. They added that a decision on whether to call Chanda will be taken after examination of documents.

Bank frauds in India tripled in last five years just over £300,000, and £100,000 being lost in the respective states. Delhi sees the bank on average losing nearly £500,000 for every fraudulent case reported. Credit rating agency Experian said scams through loan accounts are on a rise due to false contact information being provided by applicants. “Identity theft or creation of fictitious identities continues to contribute around 75% of all detected fraud cases. But one noticeable difference is fraud by repeated offenders has declined. We would attribute this to institutions putting more processes in place to check historical fraud profiles and improved detection techniques,” said Mohan Jeyaram from Experian.

upgraded its CBS to Finacle 10 across approximately 7,000 PNB branches. Meanhwhile, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has arrested Firestar Group Vice President Shyam Sunder Wadhwa, a confidant of Nirav Modi. An official informed that he was arrested in Mumbai last week after questioning. This is the first arrest by the agency in the case. Sources said Wadhwa was accused of conducting fraudulent transactions with Firestar International and Firestar Diamond International owned by Nirav Modi, who along with his group companies- Diamond R US, Stellar Diamond and Solar Exports and others have been implicated in the £1.35 billion scam which was admitted by the PNB in February.

Suzuki-Toyota seal mega crossbadging deal Maruti Suzuki's bestsellers, the Baleno compact and Vitara Brezza mini SUV will sport a fresh name starting next year. Also Corolla, one of Toyota's most admired sedans will carry a Suzuki branding. Both the companies concluded a mega cross-badging agreement for the Indian market last week. Under the crossbadging, partner companies share the same car of platform with minor changes to the architecture but signifi-

cant changes to the exterior and interiors. Both the companies will continue to sell the three models from their original networks and the new variants will be additions to their portfolios. The agreement comes at a time when there is a global movement toward forming alliances to explore and develop shared mobility, connected cars and green technologies. A joint statement said, “Toyota and Suzuki have concluded a basic agreement toward the mutual supply of hybrid and other vehicles between the two companies for the Indian market. Specifically, Suzuki will supply the Baleno and Vitara Brezza vehicle models to Toyota, while Toyota will supply the Corolla vehicle model to Suzuki.” Sources said both companies will badge the vehicles as per their brand design philosophy as well as market understanding and reach. “We may have Toyota deals selling the Baleno and Brezza with new names, and their branding. And Maruti's Nexa may perhaps sell the Corolla with a new name and different design cues,” a source said.


WORLD

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PAKISTAN

SRI LANKA

Sirisena’s party to Uproar in Pakistan over frisking support no-trust motion of PM Shahid Abbasi in US

WA S H I N G T O N : Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi had to undergo a routine security check at a US airport during a recent visit, an 'indignity' that has enraged the Pakistani media amid reports that the Trump administration is considering imposing visa bans and other sanctions on individuals in the Pakistani government. Footage aired on Pakistani TV channels shows Abbasi picking up his bag and coat and walking out from a security check at what they said was an American airport. Abbasi was in the US recently on a private trip but he also met vice-president Mike Pence who bluntly told Abbasi that Pakistani has to do more to address concerns about its nurturing of terrorist

groups. But it was the sight of the country’s prime minister being subjected to a security check that incensed Pakistani TV anchors. "He should be ashamed for saying he went on a private visit. He is the prime minister… he has a diplomatic passport … there is no such thing as a private visit. He is representing the country… there are certain protocols when you are representing 220 million people," roared one talking head, saying Pakistan had been humiliated and Abbasi had brought shame on the country. The US smackdown came even as Foreign Policy magazine reported that the Trump administration is 'weighing unprecedented political penalties' on Islamabad for harbour-

Shahid Khaqan Abbasi

ing Afghan militants waging war on the US-backed government in Afghanistan. "The options under consideration include revoking Pakistan’s status as a major nonNATO ally, permanently cutting off the US military aid that was suspended two months ago, and even imposing visa bans or other sanctions on individuals in the Pakistani government deemed responsible for providing support to the militants," the journal said.

The magazine reported that the Trump administration is now engaged in an internal debate about the tempo and scale of possible punitive steps against Pakistan, echoing arguments under previous US presidents. Some officials and military officers favour a hard line with Pakistan, maintaining that years of aid and accommodation have produced little in return. But other voices in the administration worry about alienating a nucleararmed country of 200 million people bordering China. The appointment last week of a fervent hawk as national security advisor, John Bolton, and the nomination of another for secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, it said 'could tilt the discussion in favor of tougher measures against Islamabad.'

Hafiz Saeed’s MML named terrorist outfit

WASHINGTON: In a major setback to Hafiz Saeed’s political ambitions, the US has designated the Milli Muslim League (MML), the political front of Pakistanbased Mumbai attack mastermind-led Jamaat-ud Dawa, as a foreign terrorist organisation. In a simultaneous move, seven members of the MML’s central leadership body have been designated as foreign terrorists. The US also added Te h r e e k- e -A z a d i - e Kashmir (TAJK) to the list of terrorist groups. TAJK is said to be a front of the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), which according to the Trump administration, continues to operate freely inside Pakistan. The move comes a day after the Election Commission of Pakistan asked the MML to produce

a clearance certificate by the interior ministry for its registration as a political party. Pakistan’s election commission had earlier rejected the MML’s application for registration as a political party after the interior ministry objected to its ties to banned militant outfits. The State Department said the move was aimed at denying the LeT resources it needed to plan and carry out further terrorist attacks. “Both MML and TAJK are LeT fronts created to circumvent the sanctions against it (LeT)...Today’s amendments take aim at LeT’s efforts to circumvent sanctions and deceive the

Hafiz Saeed

public about its true character,” said Nathan A Sales, Coordinator for Counterterrorism at the Department of State. “Make no mistake: whatever LeT chooses to call itself, it remains a violent terrorist group. The US supports all efforts to ensure that LeT does not have a political voice until it gives up violence as a tool of influence,” Sales said. Among other consequences of the designa-

tions, LeT’s property and interests in property subject to US jurisdiction are blocked, and US people are generally prohibited from engaging in any transactions with the group. “LeT continues to operate freely within Pakistan, holding public rallies, raising funds, and plotting and training for terrorist attacks,” the State Department said. The LeT was designated as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation (FTO) and Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) group on December 26, 2001. Its leader, Saeed, is also designated as a SDGT. To avoid sanctions, the LeT had repeatedly changed its name over the years, the State Department alleged. In January 2017, the LeT began operating under the name TAJK.

BANGLADESH

Myanmar minister to visit Rohingya camps DHAKA: For the first time, a minister of the Myanmar government has agreed to visit the camps of Rohingya refugees in Cox’s Bazar later this month, Foreign Secretary Md Shahidul Haque has said. But the government also has plans to take the minister to the no man’s land at Bandarban’s Naikhongchhari border, he said at a conference at Dhaka University’s (DU) Nabab Nawab Ali Chowdhury Senate Bhaban on Monday. The secretary, however, did not mention the name of the minister. Shahidul said living on

the Bangladesh-Myanmar zero line, there were around 5,000 Rohingyas

whether they would take steps to take the Rohingyas back as they

Rohingya refugees in Cox’s Bazar

who did not enter Bangladesh even after being threatened and tortured. When discussions were held with Myanmar, Bangladesh had asked

were near their border and Myanmar had agreed, he said. He said the joint working group, comprised of officials from both coun-

tries, had recently visited the border’s zero line and the Rohingyas staying there, and discussed repatriation of those whose houses have not been burned down in the military crackdown that started in late August last year in Rakhine state. The foreign secretary said they were trying to create a mechanism that would ensure safe return of the refugees. But he criticized the role of Myanmar troops who were positioned in that portion of the no man’s land, and said seeing the army stationed right behind them was scaring the Rohingyas.

against Lanka PM

COLOMBO: Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena’s party on Tuesday formally informed embattled Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe that it will support a no-confidence motion backed by the Joint Opposition against him. Wickremesinghe, 68, leads a national unity government in alliance with Sirisena’s Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP). He faces the no-confidence motion in Parliament on Wednesday. There was a flurry of discussions among key players to discuss the noconfidence motion. Senior SLFP leader and Minister of Aviation Nimal Siripala de Silva conveyed the party’s decision to Wickremesinghe, political sources said. The motion scheduled for Wednesday was handed over to Speaker Karu Jayasuriya by the Joint Opposition last month against Wickremesinghe, accusing him of financial mismanagement and failing to tackle anti-Muslim riots last month in the central Kandy district. The SLFP insisted that Wickremesinghe should step down before the motion. The prime minister refused to step down, a spokesman for Wickremesinghe’s United National Party (UNP) said. “We will defeat the motion,” said Harsha de Silva, a UNP frontliner and a minister of state. Wickremesinghe had resisted a call from Sirisena to resign following a crushing defeat to former presi-

Ranil Wickremesinghe

dent Mahinda Rajapaksa’s new party Sri Lanka People’s Front in the February 10 local election. It is no secret that Sirisena wants Wickremesinghe’s ouster so that he could replace him with his own choice. Wickremesinghe was recently replaced as law and order minister after clashes erupted in the Kandy district. The President also removed key institutions, including the Central Bank, from the control of Wickremesinghe. W i c k r e m e s i n g h e’ s broader front, UNFGG has 106 seats in the 225 member assembly while the SLFP and the JO combine of Sirisena and Rajapaksa represents only 96. However, some of Wickremesinghe’s allies – Sri Lanka Muslim Congress – have expressed dissatisfaction with the UNP. Sirisena is said to believe that at least 12 Muslim MPs in Wickremesinghe’s front may decide to vote against the premier. The main Tamil party which has 16 seats will decide later on the stance to be taken at the no trust vote against the premier. Its leader R Sampanthan met President Sirisena on Tuesday.

Rajapakse’s son denied entry into US COLOMBO: A controversial Sri Lankan opposition legislator said US authorities prevented him from taking a flight to Texas from Moscow where he was an observer for the Russian presidential election. Namal Rajapakse, son of former strongman president Mahinda Rajapakse, said the airline had been instructed not to allow him to board the flight to Houston. Rajapakse said on Twitter that he had been informed by Emirates Air "I won't make my Houston Flight as #US Officials instruct them to not let me board. Sure it has nothing to do with my name, being part of #lka opposition or my travel from #Russia." The 31-year-old was invited by the Russian gov-

ernment to be a monitor of the presidential election won by Vladimir Putin. US authorities do not comment on individual cases, but official sources said his name was likely on a travel

Namal Rajapakse

watch list as a result of money laundering charges he faces at home. Namal Rajapakse and a sibling have been charged with money-laundering. Other family members face corruption allegations.


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WORLD

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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

US, RUSSIA

Preparations on for Donald Trump-Kim Jong-un summit WA S H I N G TO N: The United States continues to move forward on the proposed summit meeting between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, the White House has said. White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said that preparations were on for the summit, which has been accepted by Trump at the request of Pyongyang. “We are continuing to move forward. The offer was extended and accepted, and were continuing to move forward in that process. We still don’t have a

Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un

set time or date on that front,” Sanders said in response to a question. State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert had more or less a similar statement to offer during a news conference.

“We continue to proceed with our planning to go ahead for a summit between the United States and the DPRK (Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea). This is something that

President Trump and the Republic of Korea had talked about not too long ago. We are going ahead and we are planning that,” she said. Nauert said the State Department was planning the meeting in coordination with the National Security Council (NSC) and other US Government agencies and departments. “It’s a big task, certainly, pulling off any kind of summit like this. The NSC is the main coordinator of it, and the State Department is providing any assistance that is needed,” Nauert said.

Russia retaliates by expelling diplomats from 23 countries MOSCOW: In a retaliatory step, Russia has expelled 59 diplomats from 23 countries and said it reserved the right to take action against four other nations in a worsening standoff with the West over the poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter in Britain. Russia said it was responding to what it called the baseless demands for scores of its own diplomats to leave a slew of mostly Western countries that have joined London and Washington in censuring Moscow over the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia. Moscow ordered the expulsion of 60 US diplomats and the closing of the US consulate in St Petersburg, Russia’s second

Vladimir Putin

city, in retaliation for the biggest ejection of diplomats since the Cold War. Russia summoned senior envoys from most of the other countries that have expelled Russian diplomats and told them it was expelling a commensurate number of theirs. Russia has already retaliated in kind against Britain for ejecting 23 diplomats over

the first known use of a military-grade nerve agent on European soil since World War Two. British ambassador Laurie Bristow was summoned again. The Russian foreign ministry said Bristow had been told London had just one month to cut its diplomatic contingent in Russia to the same size as the Russian mission in Britain. A spokeswoman for the British foreign office did not say how many British diplomats would be affected, but said Russia’s response was regrettable and Moscow was in flagrant breach of international law over the killing of the former spy. The poisoning, in southern England, has united much of the West in taking action against what it

regards as the hostile policies of President Vladimir Putin. This includes the United States under President Donald Trump, who Putin had hoped would improve ties. Russia rejects Britain’s accusation it stood behind the attack and has cast the allegations as part of an elaborate Western plot to sabotage East-West relations and isolate Moscow. The Russian foreign ministry summoned senior embassy officials from Australia, Albania, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, the Netherlands, Croatia, Ukraine, Denmark, Ireland, Spain, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Romania, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Canada and the Czech Republic.

Woman in hijab 'Hard Rock' apologizes, attacked in US hospital removes 'Hindu Pizza'

MICHIGAN: A 19-yearold student who was seeking treatment at a hospital in Dearborn, Michigan, was attacked by a stranger John Deliz, 57. The attacker was wandering in the hospital harassing patients for money and cigarettes after being released. In a sudden rush of blood, the stranger launched an attack on the teenager before being overpowered by the security. Deliz was arrested and pleaded guilty to assault the following day. He was held in custody and will be sentenced at a later date. The victim will sue the hospital for $25,000 in damages for failing to remove Deliz prior to the assault, alleging that he was

an obvious danger to patients. She also fears it may have been an Islamophobic attack because she was ‘the only one wearing a headscarf’. Her lawyer says she has been left with a life-changing injury and is so traumatised by what happened. The lawyer in his lawsuit submitted that his client was attacked 'because she was a Muslim.’Video clip shows a dishevelledlooking Deliz creeping up on the woman as she talks to a receptionist with her back turned to him. Without any interaction he launches a full-blown assault – punching the teen repeatedly in the face, knocking her to the ground.

P U N TA CA N A ( D O M I N I C A N REPUBLIC ): Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Punta Cana (Dominican Republic), has apologized to the protesting Hindus and removed “Hindu Pizza” from its menu containing “chicken tikka masala with yogurt, cilantro and mint.” Anmarí Pérez, Customer Care Manager of the hotel, in an email to Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, who spearheaded the protest, wrote: “We sincerely apologize and addressed the issue immediately.” “Hindu Pizza” has now reportedly been removed from both restau-

rant and online menus and all other materials. Zed thanked the hotel for understanding the con-

cerns of Hindu community. Zed had pointed out that Hindus were mostly vegetarian and selling a meat topped pizza in their name was highly inappropriate. No faith, larger or smaller, should be taken frivolously and mishandled for mercantile greed, Zed added.

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AFRICA

Winnie Mandela, anti-apartheid campaigner, passes away at 81 JOHANNESBURG: Winnie MadikizelaMandela, the South African anti-apartheid campaigner and former wife of the late President Nelson Mandela, died at the age of 81. The family said that she died after a long illness. She was one of the greatest icons of the struggle against apartheid, a statement said. "She fought valiantly against the apartheid state and sacrificed her life for the freedom of the country." Madikizela-Mandela was known as the "Mother of the Nation" because of her struggle against whiteminority rule in South Africa. She was married to Nelson Mandela for 38 years, including the 27 years he was imprisoned. "She kept the memory of her imprisoned husband alive during his years on Robben Island and helped give the struggle for justice in South Africa one of its most recognizable faces," the statement said. The couple were divorced in 1996, two years after Nelson Mandela became South Africa's first black President. They had two daughters together. A longtime stalwart of the ruling African National Congress, Madikizela-Mandela was a

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela

member of parliament at the time of her death. One of the last official visits she received was from current South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who went with her to Soweto township last month to encourage people to register to vote in next year's presidential election. Ramaphosa praised Madikizela-Mandela as "an advocate for the dispossessed and the marginalized" and "a voice for the voiceless." "Even at the darkest moments of our struggle for liberation, Mam' Winnie was an abiding symbol of the desire of our people to be free," Ramaphosa said in a statement. "In the midst of repression, she was a voice of defiance and resistance. In the face of exploitation, she was a champion of justice and equality."

Controversial lawyer Miguna Miguna lands in Toronto TORONTO: Deported lawyer Miguna Miguna has landed in Toronto, Canada, after leaving Dubai International Airport, where he spent four days. One of his lawyers, Nelson Havi, said Miguna left Dubai on "his own and with the assistance of the Canadian Consulate in UAE." "(He) travelled to and arrived in Toronto, Canada. He will undergo toxicology tests and treatment for the chemicals used to sedate and poison him. He will return thereafter," Havi posted on Twitter. According to a senior government source, Miguna left Dubai airport after producing his Canadian passport, which he had claimed to have lost during a three-day standoff at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi. Miguna, who landed in Dubai, spent four days in the Arab Emirates, mostly receiving treatment. He had complained of ill health after accusing Kenyan police of injecting him with “unknown poisonous chemicals” as they deported him. He claimed his body, especially his ribs, were hurting after being drugged, assaulted

and dragged to the flight during his deportation. Papers First deported to Canada in February, Miguna claims Kenyan and Canadian citizenship, but the government says he

Miguna Miguna

renounced his Kenyan birth right when he acquired his Canadian passport in 1998. The High Court in Nairobi has ordered the government to facilitate his return from Toronto to take part in his citizenship case after the Court of Appeal rejected State's request to have the orders suspended. The Department of Immigration had on March 27 issued application papers to Miguna to enable him start the process of enabling him regain his Kenyan citizenship as ordered by the courts, and to also facilitate his entry into the country.


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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

In loving memory of our beloved Mother

Shree Shantinathay Nam:

D.O.B.: 30/08/1935 (Kampala, Uganda)

Shree Mahiviray Nam:

D.O.D.: 23/03/2018 (London, England)

Mrs Taraben Bhogilal Mehta

It is with profound sadness that we announce the tragic demise of our beloved mother – Taraben Bhogilal Mehta, on Friday 23rd March, 2018. She was very special to all of us and we take immense pride to call her our Mother. She was the epitome of a caring, kind and helpful person. She touched the hearts of many amongst our entire community both immediate and extended; and was widely respected owing to her beautiful and personable nature. On the evening of Saturday 24th March our family arranged a prayer meeting at Navnat Bhavan in celebration of her life. We were blessed with over a thousand people in attendance to pay their respects, this was a true testament to the esteem in which she was held. The funeral was held on Tuesday 27th March and at Golders Green Crematorium, her final farewell

was both moving and emotional, yet tranquil and divine. Our Mother has left us with a treasure trove of wonderful memories that we will cherish in our hearts and minds for eternity. Her support and strength has been shared with all her children, and we shall in turn pass these qualities down to our children and her great grandchildren whom she loved dearly. We wish to convey our sincere and utmost gratitude to all our relatives, friends and wellwishers for all the support and messages of condolence we have received. With the grace of almighty God, may her soul rest in peace and be forever in our hearts. “For whether I live or die, I am always.” (Shri Aurobindo) Om Shanti Shanti Shanti.

Jai Jinendra from us all: Sons & Daughters-in-law: Yogesh-Rita, Hitesh-Trupti, Dilesh-Chetna Daughter & Son-in-law: Late Kishori –Ramesh Gadani Grandchildren: Hital, Ricky, Rishi, Shaneel, Ishita, Amisha, Sharvi, Nikita, Akash Grand Son-in-law: Arkesh Shah, Vishaal Virani, Sanjay Karamsadkar Grand Daughter-in-law: Nishi Gadani Great Grandchildren: Anaya, Vihaan, Soha, Nala Kish, Niya Shori

Family Contacts: Yogesh Bhogilal Mehta, M: 07831 100693 E: Yogesh.Mehta@pickfords.com Hitesh Bhogilal Mehta, M: 07775 591200 E: Hitesh@shaneel.com Dilesh Bhogilal Mehta, M: 07785 257737 E: dilesh@dilesh.com

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INDIA

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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

SOUTH

Cauvery water dispute: AIADMK plans contempt plea against Centre CHENNAI: The Tamil Nadu government is all set to file a contempt plea against the Centre for failing to meet a Supreme Court deadline to set up the Cauvery Management Board. The Supreme Court, on February 16, set a deadline of six weeks for the Centre to frame a scheme for the implementation of the final award of the Cauvery Water Disputes Tribunal (CWDT) given in February 2007. The court had also stated that “no extension shall be granted for framing of the scheme on any ground.” Deputy Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu O Panneerselvam tweeted

O Panneerselvam

that the ruling AIADMK will go on a hunger strike on the issue. DMK meanwhile, attacked both the BJP and the AIADMK over the non-constitution of Cauvery Management Board. Working president of the Opposition party,

Stalin, however, alleged that the ruling government was working overtime for the BJP's victory in Karnataka to escape from corruption cases. “DMK won't file a contempt petition against the Centre as it is the state government's responsibility to take legal route. We will stage massive protests across Tamil Nadu after consulting other opposition parties. We will also show black flags to Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he visits Chennai on April 15 for failing to implement the verdict on Cauvery within the stipulated time. Panneerselvam has

been demanding all of us to wait. The state government held a high-level meeting but the outcome of the meet was not known. This is a corrupt government. If the AIADMK members resign, we will make our representatives resign as well. We have repeatedly sent letters to PMO on Cauvery but we haven't received a reply from them,” Stalin said. BJP, however, maintains that the delay is not keeping in mind the Karnataka elections. Party spokesperson Narayanan Tirupathi said, “Since Karnataka government is not accepting the Centre's proposal, there is a delay. ”

Symbol to TTV: SC keeps order in abeyance NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court has kept in abeyance an interim order issued by the Delhi High Court directing the Election Commission of India (ECI) to consider giving TTV Dhinakaran's Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK) an election symbol, preferably a 'pressure cooker' which was successfully used by him in the RK Nagar constituency byelection. A bench led by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, requested the Chief Justice of the Delhi High

Court to constitute a Division Bench to hear the petition filed by Dhinakaran claiming his faction as the real AIADMK and that the party symbols of 'Two Leaves' should go to him. The High Court had on March 9 directed the poll panel to allot a common symbol, and a name to the faction led by Dhinakaran. He had asked for the pressure cooker symbol as he had it in December last year when he won the RK Nagar by-election with a margin of over 40,000 votes. Meanwhile, the rul-

TTV Dhinakaran

ing E Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam group had opposed Dhinakaran's plea on several grounds, including that his faction had to register itself as a separate party to get a

name and symbol and that the appropriate forum for the matter was the Madras High Court. Dhinakaran has said AIADMK leaders are approaching courts to restrain the AMMK from using its party flag out of fear of losing their hold over the party and power. “The people in Tamil Nadu are smart enough to differentiate between Anna on the AIADMK flag and Amma on our party flag,” Dhinakaran said. “The court has not stayed, but only kept in abeyance the Delhi HC order.”

PUNJAB

Sidhu's bank accounts seized over tax dues NEW DELHI: Cricketerturned-politician, Punjab Tourism Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu has been accused of non-payment of tax dues amounting to almost Rs 52,00,000. The Income Tax department has seized two of his bank accounts within Delhi after he failed to produce bills of expenditure declared in his tax returns filed for FY15. Sources said he was reminded by the department to furnish the bills, but he ignored the warnings. Sidhu had reportedly given a breakup of his expenses. He had cited Rs 38,24,000 in travel, Rs 28,00,000 as dress expenses, Rs 47,00,000 for employees salary, and Rs 17,80,000 for petrol and diesel expenses. A senior IT official said, “The assessee failed to provide any bills or invoices in support of his claim. The assessing officer has disallowed 30 per cent of the expenses and the total dues are nearly Rs 52,00,000.” The minister, however,

Navjot Singh Sidhu

maintains that he has never defaulted and has filed tax returns at a regular basis for the past ten years. The IT department has seized Singh's Citibank account at Connaught Place, and HDFC account at Khan Market branch, New Delhi. Singh was sentenced to a three-year jail term in 2006 in a road rage case. It was later dismissed after the Supreme Court turned down his conviction. Formerly a Rajya Sabha member of the BJP, he resigned in 2016, only to join the Congress in 2017 a little before the state Assembly polls in Punjab.

ISI espionage network busted, one arrested in Punjab

AMRITSAR: The Punjab Police Special Operations Cell busted an espionage network in Punjab, after receiving a tip-off from the military intelligence unit. Ravi Kumar, a resident of Dhaleke village, Amritsar has been arrested on spying charges. It has been reported that Kumar was recruited by Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) seven months back through Facebook. He is currently under interrogation and will be produced in the Amritsar Court. In the preliminary interrogation, he said he was contacted by ISI agents through the social-networking website. He has already confessed sharing vital information about army installations, movement of the Indian army, and information on the construction of bunkers along the border to his ISI handlers in Pakistan through Whatsapp, Facebook, and the phone. Punjab Special Operations Cell has recovered pho-

tographs of vital Army installation, Indian Army vehicles, sketch maps of restricted areas, photocopies of restricted training manuals of Indian Army, and sensitive information about Army Operations. Kumar said that the ISI had sponsored a Dubai trip between February 20 to 24, this year, where he was briefed about his assignment. He was also being paid by the Pak agency through money transfers which were routed via Dubai. A Punjab police spokesperson said, “Investigations are being conducted to identify and track such fake Facebook accounts. Defence establishments have also been surprised of the new social media threat so that they can take necessary action at the end.” The interrogation has reportedly led to several revelations about fake Facebook accounts that are being used by the ISI to lure gullible Punjab youth for spying.

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WEST BENGAL

BJP blames Mamata for Ram Navami clashes

BJP team visiting violence-hit Bengal town

KOLKATA: A BJP delegation has accused the West Bengal government of lack of initiative in handling in the recent unrest in Raniganj and Asansol. The national ruling party also strongly criticised Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for going to Delhi at a time when parts of Bengal were facing communal tension. BJP vice-president Om Mathur who led the fourmember party committee to the affected areas said, “Almost seven days have passed since the violence but there have been no initiatives either from the state or the ruling party to help out the victims. They also showed complete lack of will in handling the unrest.” He added, “When such a big incident happened in Bengal, the chief minister is sitting in Delhi for five-six days, looking for political benefits. The BJP strongly condemns this and demands immediate and strict action against those involved in the violence.” He said there should not be one-sided action against a specific community. “The actions of the government should not be

one-sided. I have heard that people from a certain community are being charged and harassed. Surely, the people of Bengal will give the Trinamool Congress the punishment it deserves at the right moment.” The delegation visited the violence-hit areas despite the state government's prohibitory orders. National spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain visited Asansol, blaming the Trinamool Congress of having failed to control the situation after returning to Kolkata. “It has played the role of a mute observer. We visited relief camps in Asansol and found it was a failure on the part of the state,” he said. He added that the delegation will submit a report to BJP chief Amit Shah. Reiterating Mathur's opinion, he claimed the Banerjee government is causing pain to the people of Bengal. “When Bengal is burning with communal tension and the police is playing the role of a spectator, instead of helping the state's people she is holding a meeting with leaders in Delhi, ” he said.

West Bengal panchayat polls to be held in May KOLKATA: State Election Commissioner AK Singh has announced that West Bengal Panchayat polls will be held in three phases on 1, 3, and 5th May. Earlier last week, he had met representatives of political parties and discussed preparations for the panchayat polls. It is reported that polling in six districts including Maldah, Murshidabad, and Nadia, might be held in the second phase while the South Bengal election could be held in the third phase. BJP leader Mukul Roy had requested the Election Commission last month, to send 50 observers to West Bengal during the panchayat polls to learn how the ruling Trinamool Congress “rigged the poll process”. Along with other state BJP leaders, he met Chief Election Commissioner of India Om Prakash Rawat and urged him to create a separate model of poll security for West Bengal. “We know that the pan-

chayat elections are not conducted under the Election Commission. But we requested them to send a group of central observers to study and analyse how polls are being rigged in Bengal so that they can learn and create a separate poll security model for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections for West Bengal,” Roy said. The election holds significance as it is the last major poll in the state before next year's general elections. If there are any accounts of repoll for first phase, it will be held on May 3, May 5 for the second phase, and May 7 for the third. Notification for the election will be issued this week while the last date for filing nominations is April 9. The SEC announced that the date of scrutiny of papers is April 11 and the last date for withdrawal of candidature is April 16. Counting of votes will take place on May 8.


HERITAGE HISTORY

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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

Dr. Hari Desai

Four decades of BJP and Gandhian Socialism JS - BJP had to face rough weather during Pt Nehru and Indira era The charismatic leadership of Modi could reach BJP to new heights

Basically, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) which was established on 6 April 1980, with the concept of party with a difference and slogan of Gandhian Socialism, has changed many colours but has retained the tag of being called a saffron brigade since the backbone of BJP has always been the Rashtriya Swayamsevaka Sangh(RSS).

A

T i l a k i t e Congressman, Dr. Keshav Baliram Hedgewar from Nagpur established RSS as a Hindu Cultural brigade and his successor, Madhav Sadashiv Golwalkar (Guruji), felt the need to establish a political party with former Hindu Mahasabha President, Dr. Syama Prasad Mookerjee, at the helm of the affairs and Sangh Pracharaka, Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya, as his lieutenant in 1951. Mookerjee was the Finance Minister in the Bengal Ministry during 1941-42. He was also the Union Minister for

It was blessed by Justice Mohammed Currim Chagla, former Chief Justice of Bombay High Court who remained the Union Minister in Nehru Government as well as Indira Ministry, in the first convention of BJP in December 1980 at Mumbai. Justice Chagla saw BJP as “the alternative that can replace the present (Indira Gandhi) Government.” Thanks to the liberal Atal Bihari Vajpayee as the first President of the BJP, the Gandhian Socialism was incorporated as the policy concept despite open defiance of Rajmata Vijayaraje Scindia, the

Founding Fathers of Jan Sangh: Dr.Syama Prasad Mookerjee and Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya

Indian nationhood. It must be noted that Hindutva is a nationalist, and not a religious or theocratic, concept for BJP leaders. At a later stage the saffron party got rid of Gandhian Socialism but Vajpayee continued to stick to it even after he lost the power at the Centre in 2004. In September 2004, when the book “The Quest, The Hurdles: A Socialist Testament" by Chandra Sekhar, former PM, was being launched in the presence of another former PM, I. K. Gujral,

Vajapyee asked why the nation had stopped talking about socialism. "It is in the preamble of our Constitution and is a guiding goal for all parties. For the Bharatiya Janata Party, Gandhian socialism is what we want to achieve and make society free of exploitation and full of opportunities. So, we need to start this debate again," he said. Thanks to the Rathyatra politics and Ram Mandir issue, the saffron party could come to power at the Centre under the leadership of Vajpayee with 24 parties in the

BJP Promises At A Glance From coalition era to absolute majority : Narendra Modi and Amit Shah

Industries and Commerce in Nehru Ministry after independence. The Jan Sangh and its new avtar, BJP, continued to face rough weather during Nehru and Indira era but could call the shots in post-Emergency Janata Party government headed by Morarji Desai during 1977-79 since it had 93 MPs. After the downfall of Desai Ministry and the rift within Janata Party on the issue of affiliation with RSS, the BJP was established in April 1980.

founder Vice President, and Bhairo Singh Shekhawat, the late Vice President of India and the most popular Chief Minister of Rajasthan. This writer, who covered the convention as a political correspondent of Hindusthan Samachar, the Hindi National News Agency run by RSS and headed by Rajmata Scindia, was fortunate to interview both the stalwarts of the BJP then. Hindutva or Cultural Nationalism presents the BJP's conception of

1. Smaller states will be formed so as to make them economically and administratively viable and eliminate regional imbalances. 2. Number of ministers will be limited to ten per cent of legislators. 3. Introduction of a Uniform Civil Code after a commission has examined various personal laws. 4. Article 370 of the Constitution, providing special status to Jammu and Kashmir, will be deleted. 5. Lokpal and Lokayukta institutions will be created with powers to take up complaints against the Prime Minister and Chief Ministers. 6. Farm loans up to Rs.10,000 will be written off. 7. A law will be enacted to compel Indians to disclose all their foreign bank accounts and assets abroad. Determined efforts will be made to unearth unaccounted money. 8. The reservation policy will be extended to castes not covered at present and economic backwardness will be the basis of selection. 9. Superpower domination in the Indian subcontinent and Indian Ocean will be ended. 10. Nuclear bombs and delivery systems will be developed to optimize defence preparedness. 11. Fundamental Right to Work to be incorporated in the Constitution. (From “Expanding Horizons: BJP’s first decade”, BJP Document, Calcutta, 6 April 1990)

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Rashtria Swyamsevak Sangh (RSS), is wedded to India’s intrinsic identity and cultural fabric of unity and distinctiveness that have been the hallmark of this great country and its people for millennia. The BJP, today, is all set for a great leap forward which can bring about a paradigm-shift in the life of every Indian, so much so as to rewrite the history of this great nation in a way that its future generations would be proud of. Even the party’s detractors now believe that Bharatiya Janata party has transformed into an ‘unstoppable’ force.” From single digit number in the Lok Sabha in 1984, the party has successfully scored abso-

From Jan Sangh to BJP : Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Lal Krishan Advani

lute majority in the explains: “Bharatiya House of 545 and still Janata Party is the primamanaged to keep the ry member of the family coalition partners in the of organisations known ruling National as the "Sangh Parivar". It D e m o c r a t i c has risen to become one Alliance(NDA). It has 21 of the strongest nationalstates out of 35 under level parties in the counNDA wings. Various try based on its prostate assembly gressive agenda of focusing Next Column: elections and on overall Jain King Kharavela, the next Lok Sabha election s p e e d y the Great Kalinga in 2019 are to growth of Ruler judge the perthe nation. formance of the The party has NDA Government headalways remained indeed by PM Modi. For the fatigable in its approach party with discipline to national unity, integricadres of Sangh Parivar, ty, identity and strength the lines of the poetry by through its individual Robert Frost are considand national character. ered ideal: “And Miles to The BJP, which is nurgo before I sleep.” tured by and akin to the

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coalition. PM Vajpayee and Deputy PM Advani could make a good team. Of course, the team lost to the coalition headed by Congress with Dr. Manmohan Singh as the PM from May 2004 to May 2014. Today the BJP with nearly 11 crore members is considered the largest political party in the world under the leadership of its charismatic Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Like the earlier team of Dr. Mookerjee and Pandit Deendayal as well as Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Lal Krishna Advani, present day BJP has a perfect team of PM Modi and the National President Amit Shah. One of the Margadarshak Mandal members of BJP, Advani

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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

3 soldiers, 13 terrorists killed in Kashmir encounters In what was one of the biggest anti-terror operations in recent years in the state, at least 20 people were killed and over 50 others injured in south Kashmir's Shopian and Anantnag districts on Sunday. Those dead include three Army personnel, four civilians, and 13 terrorists. Police said as reports of a pre-dawn crackdown by a joint team of the Army, Jammu and Kashmir Police and Central Reserve Police Force spread, clashes erupted between the security forces and civilians who tried to shield the terrorists. Four civilians were killed in retaliatory firing by security forces. Some of them received pellet injuries and were admitted to hospital in Shopian. The encounters took place at three different areas, Draggad, Kachdoora, and Dialgam. Seven terrorists

were killed in Draggad, five at Kachdoora, and one at Dialgam. J&K DGP SP Vaid said a terrorist surrendered when his parents appealed him at the encounter site. A

major success was when security forces eliminated two terrorists, identified as Ahmad Malik and Rayees Thokar. The two had abducted and killed Lt Ummer Fayaz in May 2017, when the Army Officer had gone to his hometown in

Shopian to attend a wedding. Vaid said an SSP made special efforts to persuade the terrorists to surrender at Dialgam by calling their

family members to ask them to surrender. “Instead of surrendering, one of the holed up terrorists opened fire, prompting security forces to open fire and kill him,” Vaid said. UK's Kashmir Voice International (KVI) strong-

ly condemned the killings of locals by the armed forces. Releasing press statement, Prof. M A Raina, chairman, said, “India is determined in continuing its policy of repression and unabated killings in Kashmir. This shows India is out to take revenge on Kashmiris for their demanding the right to freedom. It seems that there is a hidden agenda of annihilating the Kashmir population which is clear by the pursuit of everyday killings.” He added, “It is highly shocking that the right thinking Indians do not stand up and ask government to engage Kashmiris for a political solution. Kashmir is not to be conquered but need to be understood. The experience of nearly three decades now, shows that massacres and unabated killings have failed to restore peace in Kashmir.”

9 killed as Dalit protests across India turn violent Continued from page1 Dalit anger erupted in unprecedented ways, signaling an assertiveness that could shake the social hierarchy. Six people were killed in Madhya Pradesh, two in Uttar Pradesh, and one in Rajasthan. Rampaging mobs resorted to wanton destruction of public property unafraid of the government and authorities. Pelting trains with stones, putting hundreds of passengers in harm's way, the community said it would seek a review of the Supreme Court order. The worst-hit was BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh, as protesting mobs went berserk, even targeting the police. Private vehicles and commercial establishments were damaged, while in certain places, people became collateral victims of rampaging masses that went around cities forcing shutdowns. The state government was caught unaware, not having expected such intensity and scale of violence. Gwalior, Bhind, Morena, Sagar, Balaghat, and Satna districts were the biggest victims. Gwalior saw protesters firing from licenced revolvers, forcing shutdowns of schools and kids ferried home in police vehicles. Curfew was clamped in Morena, where a man standing outside his house was shot by someone from a mob. Rahul Pathak, the victim, was taken to the hospital where he died. The army was called to the state to restore some bal-

Smoke billows out of burning cars during 'Bharat Bandh' in Muzzaffarnagar of UP.

ance. Internet services were suspended in Gwalior-Chambal region. No stay on order but SC will reconsider it in 10 days Even in the aftermath of the damaging 'Bharat

reconsider last month's judgment at hearing after 10 days and asked parties to file their written submissions within two days. After hearing observations by attorney general KK Venugopal, the court said,

Cops try to douse fire on the BRTS route in Ahmedabad

Bandh' the Supreme Court refused to stay its March 20 order diluting certain provisions of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes Act. It has, however, said it would

“We are not against the Act. Innocent should not be punished.” It said the judgment in no way dilutes any provision of the SC/ST Act or rules, asserting that the

Act does not mandate immediate arrest on filing of complaint. “We have not diluted any provision of SC/ST Act and only safeguarded interest of innocents from being arrested. Provisions of the Act cannot be used to terrorise the innocents. The SC/ST Act is a substantive law and we have just asked that implementation of it would require adherence to procedural law as given in criminal procedure code.” In the initial ruling, the SC had said that public servants cannot be prosecuted without the approval of the appointing authority, and private citizens too should be arrested only after an inquiry under the law. It further ruled that preliminary inquiry in a case under the Act would be conducted by the Deputy Superintendent of Police to ensure the allegations are not frivolous. The amendment was to protect honest public servants discharging bona fide duties from being blackmailed with false cases under the Act.

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Funeral held for Belgrave shopkeeper, Ramniklal Jogiya The funeral for Ramniklal Jogiya was held on Thursday 29th March 2018. Mr Jogiya, a shopkeeper on Belgrave Road, Leicester, was killed in January this year. The funeral was attended by family, friends and members of the community of Belgrave and the city of Leicester. Keith

Vaz MP was also in attendance. Keith Vaz MP said, “We in Belgrave were shocked by the senseless killing of Mr Jogiya who was a friend and valued member of the community. I would like to thank the police and Chief Constable Simon Cole for all their hard and continued work in this matter.”

In a bid to spread the message of Article 51A of the Indian Constitution, that lists fundamental duties to be performed by each citizen, a UK couple completed a reverse Dandi March, walking from Dandi to Ahmedabad. Hiten Patel, 55, and his wife Sangita, 51, began the march on March 12, reaching Ahmedabad on April 1. Hiten, who calls himself 'Bharatvasi on Duty', highlighted issues like upholding and protecting

the sovereignty, unity and integrity of the country, promoting harmony and the spirit of common brotherhood transcending religious, linguistic and regional or sectional diversities, and to renounce practices derogatory to the dignity of women. Hiten also highlighted the need to protect and improve the natural environment and develop the scientific temper. humanism and spirit of inquiry.

34-year-old midwife, Emily Dial, who works at the Frankfort Regional Center in Kentucky, USA, scrubbed up, put on a pair of sterilised gloves and performed her own caesarean section and delivered her daughter. She hopes to show other mothers that c-section births “can be just as empowering and a joyous experience, even if they are not able to take such an active part in the operation. To the parenting website CafeMom, Emily Dial said, “It was an incredible feeling to reach down, feel her head, then slowly feel

the rest of her coming, but a little strange not to be able to feel the rest of my abdomen.” She further said, “I didn't want to break the sterile field but I wanted to kiss her so bad. It was truly one of the happiest moments of my life. I felt so supported by everyone in the room. My physicians are not only my colleagues but my friends, which made it all the more special.” The hospital told The Washington Post said, “This was a controlled environment. At no point was anyone in real danger.”

UK couple completes reverse Dandi march

Midwife delivers own baby by c-section

Bodies of 38 Indians killed in Mosul brought back Mortal remains of 38 of the 39 Indians killed in wartorn Iraq were brought back in a special aircraft and handed over to their relatives or local authorities in Amritsar, Kolkata, and Patna. Minister of State for External Affairs, VK Singh, who brought back the bodies from Baghdad, said that the Indian Embassy had no record of the 40 Indians captured by terror group ISIS in Iraq in 2014, as they had gone through illegal travel agents. He said had the government had any information about these people being in danger, it would have rescued them as it had done in case

of over 45 Indian nurses in 2014. He added that both, the state and central government should work together to stop gullible people from becoming victims of illegal travel agents. 27 of those brought back were from Punjab, four from Himachal Pradesh, and seven from West Bengal and Bihar. Punjab government has announced a compensation of Rs 5 Lakh each to the families of the Punjabis killed, and also a job each to one family member of the victims. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Rs 10 Lakh compensation each for families of the 39 Indians.


HEALTH & LIFESTYLE

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

Study aims to catch the signs of prostate cancer

n Study could pave the way for men to get screenings Diagnosing prostate cancer could be revolutionised thanks to a pioneering British study that aims to catch the disease early. The research could pave the way for a national screening programme that saves lives and spares thousands from unnecessary invasive treatment. Scientists will be testing a method of diagnosis that uses MRI scans and advanced blood and urine tests. If successful, all men over 45 could be tested early in the same way that all women are offered mammograms to test for breast cancer. Prostate cancer is the most common type in men and one in eight will develop it in their lifetime. The disease kills 11,800 men in the UK each year. Current diagnosis methods – a blood test and a painful internal

investigation – are deemed unreliable. The tests often miss deadly tumours and can even lead to unnecessary treatment for benign growths. The new methods – to be tested by University College London and Imperial College London – will be able to detect tiny particles of tumour. The scientists aim to show that this approach is far more effective. The new technique would also be able to measure how likely it is that healthy men would develop prostate cancer. Those with a high risk would be encouraged to have regular MRI scans while those with a low risk would have the scans less frequently. Over the next few months researchers will recruit up to 1,500 men to take part in the study. Until now, there has been no reliable method that accurately detects harmful tumours.

The party’s host paid Anne a great compliment. “You are a good-looking woman,” he said. “Honest - I’ve had only one beer.” Her glow was only slightly dimmed when her husband interjected, “Imagine how great she’ll look after two.” *** Infinitely many mathematicians walk into a bar. The first says, "I'll have a beer." The second says, "I'll have half a beer." The third says, "I'll have a quarter of a beer." Before anyone else can speak, the barman fills up exactly two glasses of beer and serves them. "Come on, now,” he says to the group, “You guys have got to learn your limits.” *** After the birth of my son, a woman from the records department stopped by my hospital room to get information for his birth certificate. "Father's date of birth?" she asked. When I told her, she said, "Do you realize that his birthday is exactly nine months before your son's birth?" "No, I hadn't thought about it," I responded, "but now that you mention it, I have a daughter who turned two a couple days before the same date." After she finished taking down all the data, she patted my hand and said, "Maybe you should start buying your husband a tie for his birthday." *** Q: Why was six scared of seven? A: Because seven "ate" nine. *** Q: Can a kangaroo jump higher than the Empire State Building? A: Of course. The Empire State Building can't jump.

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7th April 2018

Miracle On 70th Birthday Jashwant Naker Thank God. I got all the help I needed at the right time with help of the NHS and my family, who insisted I went to the hospital; this saved my life. Today, I am fortunate enough to be one of the many faces of the NHS and the Stroke Awareness campaign (although my wife thinks the excitement for my birthday was the cause of the stroke!) I remain eternally

Sushila and Jashwant Naker

grateful for the speed and diligence of the medical staff at both Ealing as well as Charing Cross hospitals where I was diagnosed and treated promptly and expertly. I had a miraculous recovery; we were given the opportunity to celebrate the “TIME“ God gave to us . We decided to meet and greet all our family and friends, both in the UK and abroad personally. We were able to travel and spend quality time with them at their homes in London, Leicester, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Brighton, Dar-es-Salaam, Bombay, Rajkot, Jamnagar, Toronto, Texas, as well as Australia. We were able to take a family trip to Bombay where my daughters also joined. I was given a surprise party, hosted by my dear friend NB Daruwala, for all our Bombay friends. Sadly we lost him soon after and we miss

him a lot. I was also able to take a trip to Rhishikesh with my long standing friend SB Somani and enjoy the tranquility of the Ganges river and the daily aarti being performed with my wife and son. I always wanted to write my love story: “An Affair to Remember“ and dedicate it for my wife. With the help and encour-

agement of my children, not only did I manage to print it, I learnt and became an active member of social media and have shared our story via Facebook. I am thankful to all my friends and relatives who helped me to achieve this ambition. Aside from the inspiration of my family, Jyotsnaben Shah played a pivotal role in completing this book. Next month we are celebrating our 55th wedding anniversary . All these wonderful milestones are possible because we are fortunate and blessed by Jethalal Kalyanj Kaushalyaben & Juthalal Dayashanker - Kamalaben as parents in our life. We are thankful for our wonderful friends and family across the world. We have had a blessed life in our journey of 75 years from Korogwe and Congo, to London.

Study finds fatty acids found in oily fish can boost reading, spelling and attention in children Children struggling at school could benefit from taking omega fatty acids to help them learn and focus, new research suggests. Omegas, found most commonly in oily fish, are important for brain health and must be obtained from our diet. There are three types: omega-3, 6 and 9 – and many of us don’t get nearly enough omega-3. Previous research has found low blood levels of omega-3s, typically caused by not eating enough oily fish such as salmon, are

detrimental to learning and behaviour. Now, a study has concluded omega fatty acids can, among other things, boost reading, spelling and attention among schoolchildren. Young people who benefited the most were those with ADHD and those who were underperforming at school. Published in the Journal of Nutrition and Food Sciences, the study involved researchers pulling together the

Autistic children missing out on life-saving vaccinations

n Study: parents fear jabs are behind the disorder Autistic children are missing out on life-saving vaccinations, new research suggests. Only 81.6 per cent of those on the autism spectrum have received all the recommended vaccinations for children aged between four and six years old, a study found. For those without the developmental disability, 94.1 per cent have had the necessary jabs, including diptheria, polio, and measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), the research adds. The decision by parents not to vaccinate their children could be attributed to the disgraced gastroenterologist Andrew Wakefield's discredited theory

that the MMR vaccine is linked to bowel disease and autism. Around 1.1 percent of people in the UK are on the autism spectrum, according to the National Autistic Society.

results from 29 randomised controlled trials the highest quality evidence available. These trials, all published in the last five years, had involved giving children supplements containing different amounts of fatty acids such as

omega-3s and omega-6s. Of these, 22 studies involving more than 3,000 children revealed significant benefits for learning, focus and behaviour. Last November, a major review of clinical trials concluded that omega fatty acids are an ‘effective and safe treatment’ for children with ADHD. The condition is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterised by difficulty maintaining attention, impulsive behaviour and extreme hyperactivity.

Scientists find class of drug that can kill the MRSA superbug A new type of antibiotic that kills hospital superbugs has been developed by scientists. In experiments, the drugs cured mice of notoriously difficult-to-treat, antibioticresistant MRSA infections. The discovery comes as a scientists raise alarm over a global rise in antibiotic resistance, driven by over-prescription of common antibiotics. Brown University researchers' breakthrough medication may be one of a whole new group of compounds that, they hope, will have equal success in treating the dangerous infection in humans. For decades since the introduction of antibiotics in the 1920s, the drugs turned bacterial infections from severe illnesses to easily treatable ones. But as

humans and our drugs have evolved, so have the bacteria. After encountering an antibiotic, bacteria cells may morph and change, meaning that the antibiotic attacks are no longer a good match for the pathogens they are meant to treat. These survivor bugs replicate, and soon a new, antibiotic-resistant 'superbug' is born and ready to spread among populations. The threat posed by superbugs has been described as the 'antibiotic apocalypse.' Worryingly, this threat is only made worse the more antibiotics are consumed.


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Aditi Rao Hydari lashes out at airlines A

‘Blackmail’

A dramedy featuring Irrfan Khan and Kirti Kulhari.

‘Missing’

A mystery starring Tabu and Manoj Bajpayee, the film is set to shock you to your core.

‘Baahubali’ travels to Pakistan

diti Rao Hydari had a rather unpleasant encounter with an airline recently. Boarding a flight from Kullu to Chandigarh, the 'Kaatru Veliyidai' actress was upset with the boarding proceedings and lashed out at Air India for a horrible flight experience. “So shameful that a flight of 15 people is deemed overloaded and not a single check in bag is loaded on to the flight...incompetent @airindiain... there is no one to deal with the mess obviously...” the actress tweeted. After her tweet got a response from the flight's Twitter account, she said, “Pl let me also let you know that you have taken excess luggage from all of us 14 people and not bothered to inform us that our baggage has been offloaded... 9I 807 from Kullu Chandigarh... no solutions are being given, we have further flights and we all have commitments...” Despite the desperate attempts by the flight officials to calm her down, Aditi was too angry to comply.

When said the plane she boarded was a subsidiary of Air India, she said, “Of course... wheels within wheels within wheels... ????.... my boarding card loudly says @airindiain... point is we were not informed and we were the first to check in at an empty airport and we payed excess baggage... horrible!.”

Nazriya Nazim in a brand new avatar

Kamal Haasan works the gym with daughter

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aker of the mega-hit 'Baahubali' series, SS Rajamouli has carved a space for himself in the world arena. The magnum opus has been invited to several international film festivals and the latest to extend invitation is the first edition of the Pakistan International Film Festival (PiFF). Both segments of the franchise created history by entering the 100 million pound film league. It went on to become one of the highest grosser films in the Indian box office. Rajamouli expressed his gratitude and said it would be one of the most exciting of all film festivals he has attended. “Baahubali has given me opportunities to travel to a number of countries... The most exciting of them all is now, Pakistan. Thank you Pakistan international film festival, Karachi for the invite,” he said. The film franchise had a stellar star cast, with Prabhas, Rana Daggubati, Anushka Shetty, Tamannaah, Sathyaraj, and Ramya Krishnan in pivotal roles. International version of the film was released in China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Philippines, Timor-Leste, and other European and Latin American countries. 'Baahubali' has been to several film festivals, like the Busan International Film Festival, Cannes Film Festival in France, Hawaii International Film Festival and more.

K

amal Haasan is one busy man now, with his work and political commitments. Ever since the launch of his political party 'Makkal Needhi Maiam', he has been frequently meeting and reaching out to youngsters. In between managing two different lines, the star recently took some time off his hectic schedule and had a workout session with daughter Akshara Haasan at the gym. Sharing a picture on Twitter, Kamal wrote, “Gyming with my babe.With muscle man Suri. Way to go baby work

your body. ItWIIL work your mind better. A strong body abilitates a stronger mind.” Meanwhile, there are rumours that Kamal is getting back in shape for the forthcoming 'Indian 2'. Pre-production work of the film is going on in full swing and the film is expected to go on floors later in 2018. Makers are currently finalising the cast and crew of the project. Kamal also awaits the m u c h - a w a i t e d 'Vishwaroopam 2', sequel to the blockbuster film of the same name. The film is gearing up for a release this summer.

A

fter impressing audiences with her lively performances, Nazriya Nazim is back with a new avatar. This time, the 23 year old will put up the hat of a producer and bankroll husband Fahadh Faasil's next film which will be directed by Amal Neerad. The tentative title of the film is 'Ayupinde Puthagam' and shoot of the project is already underway. Also, audio of her next

Tamil release 'Vaayai Moodi Pesavum' is out. All praise for director Balaji Mohan, Nazriya also spoke highly about co-star Dulquer Salmaan. “I play a doctor who does not speak much which is quite in contrast from my real life persona,” Nazriya said. One of the most popular young stars in the Malayalam film industry, she is best known for her role in the super hit 'Bangalore Days'.


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Tiger wants to create his own identity

I

n his short fouryear-old career, Tiger Shroff has realised that rather than succumbing to pressures of the industry, moving forward is the right call. Son of veteran actor Jackie Shroff, Tiger said he was in a hurry to create his own identity. He said, “Because of the pressure, I am trying to climb ladders much faster... I'm blessed to be in the position that I am today- to have that acceptance and said that I am my own man, I am not just Jackie Shroff's son. It's what I have set out to do, to create my own identity.” Pragmatic and self-aware, Tiger is aware of his connection with the youth. “I want to inspire the uninspired. I want to move people and stir some emotion. I want to create a revolution. I have sort of initiated a spark in people. Most of my fans are children. That's a huge booster for me as they are the most honest members in the audience. They are the future of the country and if I am leading them, inspiring them in the right way, it's a right feeling.” Speaking about his failures- 'A Flying Jatt' and 'Munna Michael', he said, “I'm very tough on myself. I'm very emotionally connected to my films and the people who work with me on them. When a film doesn't work it sort of puts me in a dark space, until I start working on the next. So, it's a brief period. Learning from my failures had only helped me get better. I've never been as confident as a performer as I am today.” On the work front, Tiger has the release of 'Baaghi 2' in the near future. “The pressure is on but we have scaled things in every way. It's a beautiful love story to drive everything forward, especially the action. It has an emotional quotient, it's not just a show reel,” Tiger said.

Become more difficult to shield children: Twinkle Khanna

I

t is evident from author and columnist Twinkle Khanna's social media accounts that she is one doting mother. One of the many Bollywood celebrities who are quite active on the internet, Khanna's account is filled with posts about her family, children, and vaca-

tions. While she feels that social media has helped the current generation to “handle the glare of the spotlight”, it has become more difficult to shield them. Speaking on how she and husband Akshay Kumar maintain their son Aarav and daughter Nitara's privacy, she said, “It has become increasingly more difficult to keep our children shielded within our fishbowl existence but I also console myself with the fact that this generation growing up with social media at the forefront is probably more equipped to handle the glare of the spotlight than we were.” After the success of her previous book, when asked if the actress is open to the idea of writing an autobiography in the near future, she said, “I think when you write a book about your own life it's very difficult to be completely honest even with yourself. Fiction will paradoxically always have more honesty than a memoir.”

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Ileana wants to maintain her personal life secret

Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

I

t is no secret that Ileana D'Cruz is a private person. The actress in fact, broke news about her marriage by referring to her photographer boyfriend Andrew Kneebone as “hubby” in an Instagram post. In a recent interview, she said she does not want her private space to be part of “rubbish gossip columns. It is very sacred to me. I do not want it to be served on a platter in a gossip column, I don't want it to be part of this gossip section in the newspaper. It's a very important, sacred part of my life-and it means a lot to me,” Ileana said. She said there are many layers to her personal life and “people will end up reading so many skewed versions of it if I talk about it.” The 'Raid' actress has always been vocal about her struggle with body dysmorphic disorder for 15 years. “I am not ashamed of it. When you are ashamed of a certain thing, then it is hard to talk about. For me, what would bother me the most is the fact that I would not want people to see me in that state,” she said. “When you are dealing with depression, it hits you when you are least expecting it. For me, to be in that state... it was something hard... I think that is what people are shy about, because they don't want to be seen in that light and I can completely relate to it.” About work, she said, “I just want to choose characters that are different. And from the choices I have made so far, directors have been coming up to me with very nice, nuanced characters. In fact... I am finding it very hard to make a choice.”

Isabelle Kaif to waltz into Bollywood K atrina Kaif's sister Isabelle has been in town for quite some time now, making people antsy about her impending Bollywood debut. Rumour mill has recently churned that she is confirmed as the lead opposite Sooraj Pancholi in Stanly D'Costa's dance film 'Time To Dance'. Both, Isabelle and Pancholi are reportedly practising different dance forms for their parts in the film. It is said that while the 32 year old will play a Latin ballroom dancer, Pancholi will be seen as a street dancer. From what we have heard, the film will showcase a variety of dance forms, including Waltz, Tango, Foxtrot, Quickstep, Cha Cha, and Jive. The two potential co-stars already have one thing in common, and that is Salman Khan. The “godfather” of many in the industry has been instrumental in getting these two their muchawaited debut. The film will also be D'Costa's debut as a director. Isabelle has a penchant for dance and it is said dancing in films is what she would like to do. Meanwhile, she is already signed by a beauty brand and is now prepping for the film which is expected to go on floors in May this year.

Mahira and Ranbir meet again in London?

A

ctors Ranbir Kapoor and Mahira Khan are trending on the internet, again. No, neither of them were crossing sanskar limits but they did reportedly arrange for a secret rendezvous in London! A media report said that the team of upcoming movie 'Brahmastra', including director Ayan Mukherji, Alia Bhatt, and Kapoor, was traveling from Bulgaria to India, but Ranbir got off at London's Heathrow airport where the flight had a layover. As source said that he met with

Mahira, who was promoting her film 'Verna' and was a guest on BBC talk show HARDtalk with host Stephen Sackur. While no photos have found their way to the internet yet, it is said that the lady soon left for Pakistan where she had to attend a friend's wedding celebration while Ranbir extended his stay for 'Brahmastra' preparations. He is all set to learn Indian martial arts forms 'Kalaripayattu' and 'Varma Kalai' for fight sequences in the film.


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UK

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7th April 2018

Ham pizza 'force-fed' to Jewish pupil at Bristol school Stephen Silverman, a trustee and director of the Campaign Against Antisemitism, said this would have been an "incredibly traumatic and abusive and offensive" act for an observant Jewish person who closely followed the dietary laws. But, he added, only the victim himself was in a position to judge if it was antiSemitically motivated. The school said a "thorough investigation" had taken place and "proportionate and appropriate sanctions" put in place.

Pupils at a private school tried to force-feed a piece of pizza containing ham to a Jewish student. It happened at Clifton College, Bristol, the school confirmed, while the student was eating with his "closeknit group of friends". The college said the victim felt it was not an anti-Semitic act but that it considered it to be "completely unacceptable". The incident last December fell "far short of the high standards we expect from our pupils", a school statement said.

Man admits killing partner at Newark home their home on Wednesday 16 August 2017. He pleaded guilty to manslaughter by diminished responsibility at Nottingham Crown Court on Wednesday and was remanded in custody and is due to be sentenced on 4 June.

A 66-year-old man has pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of his partner who died from multiple blunt force head injuries. Yusaf Mohammed, from Nottinghamshire, killed Karen Jacquet, 59, at

Nottingham man charged with attempted murder Sunday. He was also charged with grievous bodily harm, dangerous driving, possession of an offensive weapon and breaching a restraining order. Mr Bashir, will appear at Nottingham Crown Court on 30 April.

A man has been appeared before magistrates charged with attempted murder over a collision and subsequent assault in Nottingham. Zahier Bashir, 41, from Nottingham, was arrested after two women were injured in Sherwood on

Coming Events

l South East Jain Association Crawley invites you all to celebrate Mahavir Jayanti on April 8, 7.00am to 4.00 pm, at the Sanatan Hindu Temple. l Ilford Hindu Centre invites all to join activities like ladies kirtan, Shrimad Bhagwat Maha Puran, and classes on Hindu, Gujarati, Sanskrit, and Hinduism classes, at 43, Cleveland Road, Ilford, Essex, IGI 1EE.

Sneh Joshi

and this marks the peak of your physical solar cycle, and you are in the position to make an impression on others, and to assert your personal influence. Mercury, the planet of communications is retrograde and also in your solar first house, extra care should be exercised when it comes to your body language.

TAURUS Apr 21 - May 21 The Sun travels through your twelfth house now, marking a time of retreat and regeneration. This also heralds a time for research and unfinished behind-the-scene activities. Retrograde transit of Mercury also occurs in your solar twelfth house this time, extra care should be exercised when it comes to private and personal matters. GEMINI May 22 - June 22 The Sun illuminates your sector of

friends, social gatherings and group activities. You will be in constant demand and will be in a position to network with new people. Unfortunately, Mercury also turns retrograde in the same house. Group meetings may be postponed or cancelled, and friends may be uncommunicative or giving off mixed signals. It will serve you well if you spend more time listening than speaking.

CANCER Jun 22 - Jul 22

If your child has a good joke, poem or any suggestions they would like to share please email us with the name, age and school. Email:- support@abplgroup.com FEAR

THOUGHT OF THE WEEK

rest of Don't quit, Suffer now and live the your life as a champion - Muhammad Ali

Facts You Didn't know about Spring

l Before Spring was called Spring, it was called Lent in Old English. Starting in the 14th century, that time of year was called “springing time” - a reference to plants “springing” from the ground. In the 15th century this got shortened to “spring-time,” and then further shortened in the 16th century to just “spring.” l The first day of spring is called the vernal equinox. The term vernal is Latin for “spring” and equinox is Latin for “equal night. l The fall and spring equinoxes are the only two times during the Drawn By -Anya Agrawal year when the sun rises due east and sets due west. Age-12 Years, Year-7 l On the first day of spring, a person at the North Pole would see School- St. Clement Danes High the sun skimming across the horizon, beginning six months of uninterrupted daylight. A person at the South Pole would see the sun skimming across the horizon, signalling the SPRING WORD SEARCH start of six months of darkness. l Spring almost always arrives on March 20 or 21, Buds B U D S S S A R but sometimes on the 19th. The reason the Grass S A O E D S N R equinoxes and solstices don’t always come on Seeds F S A E E G A S the same day is that Earth doesn’t circle the L D G D F D F F Daffodils sun in exactly 365 days. O D B S P I L U Rain W K N T N Y F F Tulips Sudoku Edition 14 E I Y E W S W S Flowers R R A I N B O W Rainbow S T R W A X D F Umbrella J H U M B R E L

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More than any other time of the year, your focus is drawn to your career and standing in the society. This is the time when you are more interested in accomplishing something important. Mercury, the planet of communications turns retrograde in the same house. It is important for you to be focused as misunderstandings and confusion reign while retrograde Mercury, does its best to trip you up.

School

SUDOKU - 014 9

8 5

1 6 8

7 2 3 1

3 4 2 4 2

8

9

9 1

3 6 9 2 4 5

For solution see next edition

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1. Q: What do you call an alligator in a vest? A: An Investigator 2. Q: What do you call a sleeping bull? A: A bulldozer! 3. Q: Why is England the wettest country? A: Because the queen has reigned there for years! 4. Q:What did the left hand say to the right hand? A: How does it feel to always be right? 5. Q: What do you get when you cross a Kangaroo and a Sheep? A: A Wooly Jumper!

You are feeling most adventurous and willing to achieve higher knowledge and spiritual growth. This is a good time to broaden your horizons through travel and it may take you to far off lands in pursuit of your new-found goals. Mercury turns retrograde in the same house, slowing down your pace for the next two weeks. Focus and stick to your path for success.

LEO Jul 23 - Aug 23

VIRGO Aug 24 - Sep 23

The Sun energizes your sector of change, transformation and regeneration. This transit in your solar 8th house will also help you to focus when making decisions. Unfortunately, the planet Mercury turns retrograde in the same sector of joint resources, taxes, wills, legacies and alimony, creating confusion and complications for you and can be challenging.

As the Sun transits your seventh house, you have a greater need than usual to be in a relationship. The emphasis is on "us" rather than "me". Unfortunately, your closest relationships come under scrutiny as Mercury, the planet of communications also goes retrograde in the same sector. There can be a lot of misunderstandings and confused signals. Try to resolve issues diplomatically, instead of being rash.

LIBRA Sep 24 - Oct 23

The Sun transits your solar sixth house and highlights your health and also makes you take pride in your day to day work. Unfortunately, the next two weeks may bring confusion and misunderstandings at work and troubles with your health as Mercury turns retrograde in the same sector. You'll need to pay more attention to detail and double check everything before finalising important matters and health issues.

SCORPIO Oct 24- Nov 22

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After a period of relative inactivity, you are coming out of your shell, ready to perform and to express yourself creatively. This is a very progressive period of the year, when you are inspired emotionally. Unfortunately, Mercury retrograde Occurs in the Same sector. Extra care should be exercised when it comes to matters surrounding romance, children, and creativity. This is a period of review and progress.

SAGITTARIUS Nov 23 - Dec 21

CAPRICORN Dec 22 - Jan 20 With the Sun transiting your solar fourth house of family and home, these areas are highlighted during this period. Buying or selling of property or even renovating will be uppermost in your mind. Unfortunately, Mercury retrograde occurs in the same sector. Extra care should be exercised regarding family relations and try to put off major decision-making for the time being. AQUARIUS Jan 21 - Feb 19

You are exploring and searching now, making connections, and paying attention to your immediate environment. Unfortunately, Mercury is retrograde in the same sector, extra care should be exercised when it comes to composing letters, emails, making phone calls, and with communications in general. Issues with siblings or neighbours - these should be dealt with diplomatically.

PISCES Feb 20 - Mar 20

The Sun highlights your second house of finance, and your focus is on material affairs and comfort issues. Retrograde Mercury transit is also in your solar second house, extra care should be exercised when it comes to new financial initiatives. Take this time to re-budget and rethink how you want to spend your cash during this period.


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KOHLI FOR PINK BALL EXPOSURE BEFORE DAY-NIGHT TEST AsianVoiceNews

India captain Virat Kohli and his team are not sure of playing a day-night Test against the West Indies this October. According to BCCI sources, Kohli has discussed the issue with coach Ravi Shastri and could initiate more discussions with the Committee of Administrators led by Vinod Rai before the IPL opening ceremony in Mumbai on April 7. Contrary to the stand taken by the BCCI old guard, including acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary to host a day-night Test to boost fan’s interest, it appears the team management has its reservations since the players haven’t tested the Kookaburra pink ball. This was also Rai’s primary concern when he had proposed that the cricketers should be consulted before the daynight Test is given a goahead. Sources indicate that Shastri had given his consent to play a day-night Test in writing to Choudhary but it is given to understand that Kohli isn’t sure how many sessions should be under the lights. The general day-night Test has more than a session under the floodlights, and Shastri had suggested that at least one session be played under lights. Furthermore,

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there is concern that if India agree to play day-night Test against the Windies, Australia could also be tempted to stage a day-night Test involving India and Australia at the end of the year and that Cricket Australia could ask for more than one session under the lights. The idea of more than one session under lights is something the Indian team may not agree to as Kohli doesn’t want to risk a daynight Test match Down Under without proper practice. “Initially, even Kohli wasn’t sure about the long term impact of playing daynight Test without having a

proper trial of it. But now, both Kohli and Shastri are in agreement that India should not rush into daynight Test just as yet,” a source said while adding that India would eventually play a day-night game but only once the team feels convinced. The board and team management are doing everything to ensure that the team is ready for the big tour of Australia at the end of the year. Rai, in his email, had said that the proposal to host the day-night Test should be put on hold till detailed discussions are held, including with the players. He also talked about the body clock

of the players. He also wrote that with Hyderabad and Rajkot being talked about as venues to host the two Tests against the West Indies, there is concern about how the spectators return home after a day’s play and who is going to foot the extra bills for extended security at the stadiums. The CoA is of the view that if day-night Test match is destined to happen, it should be staged in big cities like Mumbai, Bangalore, Kolkata and Delhi, where the stadiums are built in the heart of the city, from where the spectators can at least access public transport to get back home.

Aussie women win T20 tri-series Skipper Meg Lanning's blazing knock helped Australia reach a record total before Megan Schutt led a brilliant bowling performance to beat archrivals England by 57 runs in the title clash of the women's T20 tri-series in Mumbai on Saturday. Australia rode on a stunning display by Lanning (88 not out) and Elyse Villani (51 of 30 balls) as they amassed 209/4, the highest-ever total in a women's T20 International, surpassing the previous best of 204/1 posted by South Africa against Netherlands in 2010. The Southern Stars then performed with the ball by restricting England to 152/9, winning the game with ease. England had a bad start and were teetering at 14/2 with Breynoy Smith and Tamsin Beaumont falling for ducks on a placid track at the Brabourne Stadium. But Opener Danielle Wyatt (34 off 17 balls) made her intentions clear by hitting three boundaries in the very first over. Wyatt was going well and was poised for a big score, but after two consecutive boundaries she failed to get the elevation and gave a sitter

to Lanning at cover off Delissa Kimmince, with England struggling at 47/3. Natalie Sciver (50 off 42 balls) waged a lone battle but that was not enough as the target was well out of their reach. Wickets kept tumbling at regular intervals as Australian bowlers did not allow the English batters to settle. Amy Jones (30), Fran Wilson (14), Alice Davidson Richards (1), Sophie Ecclestone (2) fell cheaply as England were never in the game. For the Aussies Schutt (3-14) was the pick of bowlers, claiming two wickets in the 18th over. She was superbly aided by Ashleigh Gardner (2-20),

Delissa Kimmince (2-35) and Ellyse Perry (1-35). Earlier, asked to bat, Australia had a shaky start with opener Beth Mooney (0) falling early. But then Alyssa Healy (33 off 24 balls) and Gardener (33 off 20 balls) steered the team out of trouble in their 61run second wicket stand. The Aussies raced to 62/1 in seven overs. Veteran Jenny Gunn bought England back into the game removing both Gardner and Healy in the eight over with Australia suddenly in a spot of bother at 66/3. Brief Scores: Australia Women 209/4 in 20 overs (Meg Lanning 88 not out, Elyse Villani 51, Jenny

Gunn 2-38) won against England Women 152/9 in 20 overs (Natalie Sciver 50, Danielle Wyatt 34, Megan Schutt 3-14) by 57 runs. India down England for consolation win It was the second ball of the 16th over. India had England by the ropes at 102/7 in the last league game of the T20 tri-series. Batswoman Danielle Hazell tried to slog one down the ground but it hit the toe of the bat and looked like it was going for a boundary. India skipper Harmanpreet Kaur, fielding at long-off, dashed towards it, dived and took a stunning one-handed catch to add to England’s misery.

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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

Kohli's wax statue to be unveiled at Madame Tussauds Delhi Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli’s wax figure will be unveiled at Madame Tussauds Delhi, soon. The iconic Kohli will join cricketers Kapil Dev and Sachin Tendulkar, and footballer Cristiano Ronaldo, who have also been featured in the popular sports Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli and respect of every zone. Talking about his Indian and a perfect inclusion in Madame choice to have him as our Tussauds Delhi, Kohli next Figure. We are consaid: “It’s a great honour fident that Virat’s wax to be chosen as one of figure will be a major the figures at Madame draw for his fans not only Tussauds. All thanks to from India but from the Madame Tussauds around the world as he is team who were extremeone of the great crickly patient during the siteters that the world has ting sessions and for givseen.” ing me a lifetime memoMadame Tussauds ry.” Delhi is an attraction The team of Madame known for the portrayal Tussauds expert artists of the famous names in flew in from London to the world of glamour, meet Kohli for the sitsports, history and politing, where they took tics under one roof. over 200 specific meaMadame Tussauds has surements and images to been making wax figures create an authentic figfor over 150 years and ure. Merlin has attractions in cities Entertainments India like London, New York, Pvt. Ltd. General Orlando, Amsterdam, Manager Anshul Jain Berlin, Vienna, Bangkok, said, “We are thrilled to Beijing, Hong Kong, announce Virat Kohli’s Tokyo, Singapore, figure as the 23rd attracSydney. tion. He holds the heart

Philander bowls SA to record win over Australia Vernon Philander grabbed six wickets as South Africa crushed Australia by a record 492 runs to clinch the fourmatch series 3-1 at the Wanderers on Tuesday. The scandal-hit tourists had promised to fight for a draw on the final day to end a controversial tour on a positive note but their resistance lasted just 83 minutes as Philander ripped through their middle and lower order to finish with career-best figures of 6-21 and move to 204 Test wickets. Australia were bowled out for a paltry 119 in their second innings to succumb to their heaviest ever loss to South Africa in terms of runs, their second biggest defeat against any opponent and the fourth biggest loss in Test cricket. South Africa completed their biggest victory over the Australians in Tests in terms of runs, and also completed their first home series

Vernon Philander

win over the demoralised visitors since 1970. The Australian side have been rocked by a ball-tampering scandal in which former captain Steve Smith, his deputy David Warner and batsman Cameron Bancroft were sent home after the third Test in Cape Town before being slapped with hefty bans. Captain Tim Paine said during the final Test that the side wanted to put in a performance that would make the Australian public proud, but the home side dominated the contest right from the moment they won the toss.


Sport 32

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Asian Voice | 7th April 2018

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INDIAN ATHLETES FORCED TO UNDERGO DOPE TEST IN AUSTRALIA

Following the recovery of a used syringe outside the room of an Indian boxer on Friday at the Athletes' Village in Gold Cost (Australia), the Commonwealth Games organisers are targeting all Indians for dope test. All boxers were asked to give their urine samples for testing. On Monday, it was the turn of the gymnastics contingent, while the weightlifters were tested late on Sunday. In what is being seen as a fall-out of the breach of the No-Needle Policy of CWG, the Indian athletes have been cornered by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Agency (ASADA) to give their samples on their arrival at the Athletes’ Village – even before checking into their respective rooms. The message from the organisers to Australia’s anti-doping officials for Indian athletes is clear – spot them, test them. India has sent a 219-member athletes’ contingent to Gold Coast. While it’s normal for the host country’s anti-doping watchdog to collect samples of all participating athletes to ensure that the Games remain clean, the manner in which the organisers and ASADA officials are going about their business is something unprecedented and unheard

Steve Smith and David Warner

of. Indian athletes are facing a tough time evading the antidoping officials, an Indian coach said. “Athletes wanted to rest in their rooms after a long flight, but here they were asked to give their samples even before settling down properly. It’s not only harsh on these athletes, but embarrassing as well. Just because of the fault of some athlete, the entire contingent is being looked upon with suspicion,” the coach said. Sources even said that there are rumours that some ASADA officials have mingled

Indian athletes at Gold Coast, Australia

with the village house-keeping staff to keep an eye on the athletes. It seems that after the syringe was found stuffed in a crushed plastic bottle in the bin outside the boxer’s room, the organisers want to leave nothing to chance. They have already informed that a decision on the said boxer’s further participation would be taken before the opening ceremony on April 4. While the boxer has denied any such alleged involvement, team officials have reportedly admitted to the use of syringe but for a ‘medical purpose’.

India’s boxing high performance director Santiago Nieva said that the syringe was used to administer “vitamin substance” to an ill boxer. However, Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) chief executive David Grevemberg has said it is a “clear breach” of the No-Needle Policy inside the village. It’s pertinent to mention here that ASADA had entered into an agreement with India’s National AntiDoping Agency (Nada) last year to share whereabouts of athletes as part of their preCWG dope operation.

Sindhu, Srikanth get top seedings at CWG Olympic silver-medallist PV Sindhu and World No 2 Kidambi Srikanth have been given the top billing in their respective women's and men's singles badminton competitions of the Commonwealth Games, starting at Carrara Sports and Leisure Centre on April 10. In the draw of 64, Sindhu will begin her quest for the gold in the second round against Falkland Islands' Zoe Morris after both the players received byes in their respective opening rounds. The 22-year-old Indian is expected to meet 2014 Glasgow Games champion Michelle Li in the semifinals. The third seeded Canadian had beaten Sindhu in the semi-finals four years ago en route the gold medal. The 2010 champion and former world No 1 Saina Nehwal has been seeded second and will start her campaign with a second-round clash against Elsie de Villiers in the other half of the draw. Ruthvika Gadde, meanwhile, has been seeded eighth and she will face the winner of the

Ball tampering: Smith, Warner banned for 12 months

match between Ghana's Atipaka Grace Gha and Ah Wan Juliette of Seychelles in the second round after receiv-

England Championship last month, has been seeded third and will start his tournament with a second-round clash

PV Sindhu and Kidambi Srikanth

ing a bye in the first round. She is likely to face 2014 silver medallist Kristy Gilmour in the quarterfinals. In men's singles, Srikanth, who clinched four Superseries titles in the last season, will open his campaign against Liam Fong of Fiji and is likely to clash with 2010 silver medallist Rajiv Ouseph in the semi-finals. The other Indian H S Prannoy, who reached the quarterfinals at the All

with the winner of the match between Mauritius' Paul Christopher Jean and Seychellois Steve Malcouzane. He is expected to face three-time Olympic silver medallist Lee Chong Wei, who has been seeded second, in the semifinals. The Malaysian star, a household name in Asia, won the gold medal at the Melbourne 2006 and Delhi 2010 Games. Prannoy had defeated Lee

twice last year at the Indonesia Open and Denmark Open. For India, men's doubles combo of Chirag Shetty and Satwiksai Rankireddy are the dark horses. The duo, who had reached the semifinals at the Indonesia Masters, got a bye and will face either Lubah Aatish and Paul CJ of Mauritius or Falkland Islands' Clark Douglas and Adeoye Tobi in their first match. Mixed doubles pair of Pranaav Jerry Chopra and Sikki, seeded fourth, will also fancy their chances as they square up against Gibson Karyn and Molia Burty of Fijji or Uganda's Kasirye Brian and Nakiyemba Aisha in a secondround match. Rankireddy and Ashwini Ponnappa will open their campaign against Guernsey's Hardy Stuart and Chloe le Tissier. In the women's doubles, Melbourne's Gronya Somerville and Indonesianborn Setyana Mapasa have been handed the top billing and are tipped to take the gold.

Australia cricket captain Steve Smith and vice captain David Warner have been banned from playing for their country for 12 months, with Warner identified as the instigator of the ball tampering plot in the test series in South Africa. Cricket Australia also imposed a ninemonth ban on Cameron Bancroft, who carried out the on-field tampering on the instructions of Warner and with the knowledge of skipper Smith. Smith had earlier confirmed his punishment before leaving the tour of South Africa in disgrace. Cricket Australia said Smith and Warner cannot play any first-class cricket - at international or provincial level - in Australia for a year. They would be permitted to play for their clubs in city-level leagues. Bancroft has similar limitations during his ninemonth ban. Smith can't captain Australia for at least after his playing suspension expires, Cricket Australia ruled. It also said Warner, the pugnacious batsman who has a series of disciplinary breaches in his past, can't ever captain or be vice captain of an Australia team again. In one intriguing detail, CA said that Bancroft used "sandpaper" to tamper with the ball on day three of the third test against South Africa in Cape Town recently. The players previously said Bancroft used a piece of yellow adhesive tape covered with dirt to rub on the ball. Warner, having initially avoided being named as part of the plot, emerged as the chief planner, according to CA's investigation. The fallout for the three players increased as the Board of Control for Cricket in India banned the trio for the 2018 Indian Premier League season following the sanctions handed down by CA. Smith and Warner had already been replaced as the captains of their IPL teams but the complete bans for all three denied them lucrative contracts in the Twenty20 league.

Klaasen to replace Smith in RR

South African w i c k e t k e e p e rbatsman Heinrich Klaasen has been confirmed as the replacement for Steve Smith in Rajasthan Royals’ squad for the 11th season of the IPL starting April 7. Smith had last week stepped down as captain of Rajasthan Royals following the ball-tampering controversy that broke in Cape Town, and then had his IPL contract torn up once Cricket Australia suspended him for 12 months. A BCCI statement confirmed that Klaasen, 26, has been purchased by Rajasthan for his base price of Rs 50,00,000 having been overlooked during the player auction in January. This will be his first stint with an IPL franchise.

AV 7th April 2018  

Asian Voice Weekly Newspaper (Issue No : 47)

AV 7th April 2018  

Asian Voice Weekly Newspaper (Issue No : 47)