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Let noble thoughts come to us from every side

8 - 14 DECEMBER 2018 - VOL 47 ISSUE 31


inside: ISRO To Launch GSAT-11 Communications Satellite SEE PAGE 26

AgustaWestland chopper scam: Christian Michel extradited SEE PAGE 26

Priyanka Mehta Almost a week ago, an online video surfaced where a 15-year-old Syrian boy Jamal was physically bullied and ultimately an online petition raised over £100,000 for the family's relocation in the UK. Home Secretary Sajid Javid, was “outraged” by the video to the extent that

it reminded him of the time when he had been punched for being Asian. In his interview to the Today Programme of BBC’s Radio 4, Javid said,“When I was 11 and had just started my new comprehensive school, I had a very very similar incident. I hated it and I thought how that boy must have felt. How can this kind of thing still be going?”

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Currently, 8.5 million people in the UK are from minority backgrounds and while racism or discriminatory hate crime incidents may not be clearly visible and reported on all fronts, they fracture Britain's diversity and continue to challenge its social security systems.

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8 - 14 December 2018


Dan Parker Dan spent 20 years working in the advertising and marketing of food. His clients included Coca-Cola, McDonalds, Walkers, Cadburys, Tesco, ASDA and Sainsbury’s. In 2014, Dan was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. As he learned to manage his disease, he also learned of the crisis in obesity and the essential role food choice has in both health and happiness. In 2016, Dan closed his agency and launched Living Loud. Living Loud is a global charitable alliance of medical professionals, digital technologists and the creative industries setting out to transform lifestyle healthcare. It campaigns for reform of junk food marketing and works to use insight, creativity and technology to inform, inspire and support people to overcome illness & live healthier, happier lives. Recent projects include campaigning for a second chapter to the Childhood Obesity Plan and leading the launch of Veg Power, the campaign to inspire everyone to eat more vegetables.


Which place, or city or country do you most feel at home in? For me home is simply being with my wife and son. We feel most at relaxed in our home town of Brighton. We love the sea, the quirky culture, the vibrancy and the tolerant and liberal values.


What are your proudest achievements?

Four years ago I realised that my life's

work was damaging society, so its hard to look back with much pride. I am proud that I questioned myself, that I changed direction and set about rectifying my wrong. I'll be very proud when Veg Power hits screens in January 2019.


What inspires you? Ordinary people who step up and do extraordinary things for people they don't even know. I salute real heroes like

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to those fighting to improve lives in contrasts to the vast resource available to those commercial interests seeking to protect their profits.



What has been the biggest obstacle in your career? The entrenched and self-serving resistance to change within the higher levels of business, society and government. People at the top tend to favour the status quo.


Who has been the biggest influence on your career to date? Hugh Sims-Hilditch. Hugh was the first person to believe in me, I think that is the greatest gift that any Manager can give a young person at the start of their working life. I will forever be in his debt.


What is the best aspect about your current role? For many years, I used my skill and toil to get people to eat more junk food. Now I try to help people to lead healthier and happier lives and to call to account those who put profits and power before people. My spirit feels lifted and full of joy.


And the worst? The lack of financial resource available

What are your long term goals?

I endeavour to bring together the best medical and scientific minds with those working in creativity, communications and technology. Together I believe we can empower and inspire people everywhere to lead healthier and happier lives. I don't plan to stop until we are an international network helping millions.


If you were Prime Minister, what one aspect would you change? I would pass a social contract into legislation which mandates that the first responsibility of government is to ensure that everyone regardless of their circumstances has the means to put healthy food on their table, a safe place to call home, and a decent standard of free education and healthcare.


If you were marooned on a desert island, which historical figure would you like to spend your time with and why. Noah, as he's good at building boats.

Kaiya Patel winner of John Petchey Young Hero Award A six-year-old girl with a rare and aggressive form of leukaemia won a national charity award at the Tower of London. Kaiya Patel was announced as the winner of the John Petchey Young Hero Award at this year’s Anthony Nolan Supporter Awards on November 22. Kaiya was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in March this year - a type of cancer affecting the bone marrow meaning her body produces too many white blood cells. Her parents, Annu and Ruchit Patel launched the

Kaiya pictured with her little sister

bravery and strength astound us every day and it’s wonderful that others get to see it too. We are so proud

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Carmel McConnel at The Magic Breakfast, Emma Williams of Matthews Friends, Anna Taylor at The Food Foundation, and every person who gives their time to help others.

Kaiya’s aunt and uncle Nick and Priya Desai, with Mohammad Yasin MP and Ian Kriegar, Chair of the Anthony Nolan Board of Trustees

#CureKaiya campaign because just 20 percent of patients from Asian or other ethnic minority backgrounds will find the best possible match, compared to 69 percent of northern European patients. In August, Kaiya’s family found out a donor had been found and in September she received her stem cell transplant. On the night, Kaiya’s aunt and uncle Nick and Priya Desai collected the award on her behalf. Ms Desai said: “Kaiya’s

of her and thankful to all of you who dedicated time to raise awareness for this important cause.” Mr Desai said: “On behalf of the whole family we want to say thank you and we hope the 40,000 plus sign ups we managed to add to the Anthony Nolan stem cell registry through the #CureKaiya campaign, will save a lot of lives. Kaiya is a true inspiration to us and I can’t wait to see how much more of an impact she will make in the future.” Anthony Nolan uses its

register to match potential stem cell donors to blood cancer patients in desperate need of a stem cell transplant. Henny Braund, chief executive of Anthony Nolan, added: “We’re wishing Kaiya all the best as she recovers from her stem cell transplant and I’d like to congratulate her on winning the John Petchey Young Hero of the Year Award. Every day at least five people, like Kaiya, begin their search for a matching unrelated stem cell donor to treat their blood cancer or blood disorder. Kaiya’s family have put a great deal of time, effort and energy into raising awareness of Anthony Nolan and encouraging people to join the stem cell register.” Trudy Kilcullen, chief executive officer of the Jack Petchey Foundation, added: “The Jack Petchey Foundation is determined to engage young people in important issues such as raising awareness of stem cell donation. That’s why we supported a special John Petchey Award to recognise and reward young people’s contribution. Kaiya is an inspiration with an incredibly powerful story.”






8 - 14 December 2018

Imran Khan’s overtures in context Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan issued a statement that Kashmir was the only serious obstacle to a fruitful India-Pakistan relationship. This, also, was the general refrain of his predecessors Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif. Benazir spoke of Kashmir as the unfinished business of Partition. Following the fiasco of his regime’s Kargil military adventure in the summer 1999, in which a force of the Pakistani Army occupied the Kargil heights in a covert operation in a bid to surprise India, which it assuredly did. The calculation was to force India to an acceptance of the formidable ground reality – mountainous terrain and challenging gorges. India, in turn, surprised Pakistan with its robust response: the intruders were engaged and eventually destroyed, forcing a desperate Nawaz Sharif to appeal to US President Bill Clinton to intercede and rescue Pakistan from the mess of its own making. Pakistan had to vacate the remaining territory it controlled and depart – complying with the terms without demur. Nawaz Sharif was overthrown in a military coup, which brought Army chief Pervez Musharraf - the architect of Kargil - to power, which he retained for almost the next decade and a half. During the entire period and beyond, the Pakistan State, then under the rule of General Zia- ul Haq, a notorious Islamist, who, in collaboration with the United States, set up the Inter Services Intelligence directorate as an instrument against the Soviet presence in Afghanistan. What it ended doing was a lethal weapon against civil liberties and the rule of law in Pakistan and an instrument for the conduct of covert jihadi terrorism against India. The Pakistan sponsored jihadi attack on Mumbai on 26/11 2008 in the Musharraf era cut deep into the Indian psyche, freezing India’s relationship with Islamabad. Imran Khan appears to have recognized this, saying that he had inherited a dark legacy. That said, he must equip himself with critical historical data if he wishes to begin a new chapter in relations. To begin with, it was a rash and arrogant of Mohamed Ali Jinnah – Pakistan’s founding father - to have encouraged his newly formed country’s Pathan levies to embark on an

ill-gotten invasion of the Kashmir Valley, where they murdered, looted and raped, believing that the new India would be too craven to react, that Jinnah would fulfill his dream to pray at the Srinagar mosque in celebration an Islamic triumph. V.P Menon, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel relates that if the standstill agreement between India and Pakistan had been observed, and that if in due process Kashmir had acceded to Pakistan, the Indian government, without fuss and bother, would have accepted the decision. In seeking to rub Indian noses into the ground, Jinnah miscalculated grievously, When you start a war make sure you win it; losers do not as a rule determine the conditions of the peace. Next, Pakistan politicians demand that India accept UN resolutions on a Kashmir plebiscite, but that was predicated on the prior withdrawal of Pakistan troops from the State. Consider also Jawaharlal Nehru’s letter to his Pakistani counterpart Mohammed Ali, dated November 10, 1953, in which the Indian Premier offered the desired plebiscite provided the Plebiscite Administrator was a Scandinavian rather than the recommended American Admiral Nimitz. Mohammed Ali turned down the offer, having signed up to Pakistani membership of US-sponsored CENTO and Baghdad Treaties in the expectation of acquiring a cornucopia of American weaponry to confront India, and not the Soviet Union or China – which was US goal. The subsequent Pakistani insane project to bleed India to submission has backfired spectacularly. Jihadi terror groups are now targeting the hand that once fed them. The Indian state handled the jihai threat effectively, its economy has grown to an estimated $3 trillion and rising, and hence leagues ahead of Pakistan. In science and technology the gap is equally forbidding. Imran suggests that India and Pakistan move on rather than shackle themselves to a largely barren past. These commendable sentiments will resonate with Indians and Pakistanis of goodwill. But reaching that point of take-off will require a platform sturdy enough to bear the accumulated burdens of the past, then lighten the baggage stage by stage in the journey to a shared, collaborative future.

Openings for India in post-Brexit scenario The uncertainties and convulsions in British politics following the Theresa May’s government’s negations with the European Union is reason enough for India to ponder its options. The EU Ambassador to India, Tomosz Kozlowski hinted that the European Union, with a freer hand, could reopen talks with India on a mutually rewarding trade pact. In a strategy paper for India recently released, the EU presented a negotiating position ‘based on a ‘balanced, ambitious and mutually beneficial free trade agreement.’ This had proved elusive through 11 years of hard bargaining. Ambassador Kozlowski stated: ‘In particular, the EU will continue to engage with India to ensure that such an agreement will be economically meaningful, delivering real new market openings in all sectors to both sides, and contain a solid rule-based component.’ Moving on, the Belgian Ambassador to India Francois Delhaye, speaking at the ‘Invest in the gateway to Europe: Belgium’ conference jointly organized by the Belgian Embassy in New Delhi and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI),said: ‘We do not know which form Brexit will take. It will probably have a profound impact on the European Union.’ The UK’s Commonwealth partners, long accustomed to look on London as a hub of global finance and services, await Brexit for their next step. More than anything the political uncertainty over Brexit deal put forward by Prime

Minister Theresa May has opened a can of worms. Her Conservative Party is bitterly divided on the subject, one faction is for remaining in the Europe, the other group of Tory MPs are determined to leave, come what may, and are opposed to the deal the Prime Minister has reached with the EU on the terms of Brexit. The Labour opposition will vote against the government, as will the government’s coalition partners the Liberal Democrats. Prime Minister May is engaged in a rearguard action, fighting gamely amid a spate of resignations from her cabinet and the government at large. Retaining power after the parliamentary vote looks decidedly bleak. Such are the developments in the background even as the Belgian Ambassador made his pitch to India. ‘Many companies are hedging against what is happening and are looking for secondary locations in Europe. Belgium has a lot to offer,’ he said. It surely has. One of the continent’s major industrialized platforms, it lies at the heart of Europe and hence is well connected to its principal commercial and manufacturing centres. More relevant for the Ambassador’s audience in Delhi, after Germany, Belgium is the EU’s second largest Indian economic partner, their bilateral trade is worth 12 billion euros, exports from Belgium to India are worth 7.9 billion euros, and imports from India worth 4.7 billion euros. Considering its size and population, these numbers are significant.

India, Russia, China Summit at G20 Glitches and hitches spiced the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The host’s welcoming party was nowhere in sight when French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife stepped out of their aircraft, so he shook hands with airport staff, a Xi Jinping look-alike was greeted mistakenly for the Chinese President, while German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrived late in a commercial aircraft, as the official one had developed engine trouble. US President Donald Trump cancelled his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin to express his displeasure over the Russian response to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko’s provocations in the Kersh Strait, gateway to the Sea of Azov. Poroshenko’s opinion ratings in the forthcoming general election are in single digits. Whipping up

patriotic fervor is his only realistic option to turn the tide. The US spokesman said his President’s decision was designed to deepen Russia’s isolation. It reminded one of the famous Punch cartoon more than a century ago, and its tongue-in-cheek-line ‘Fog in the Channel, Continent isolated! Russian President Vladimir Putin, flanked by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping posed for a picture at their Trilateral Summit, following the BRICS Summit of Brazil, Russia, China, South Africa. Prime Minister Modi tweeted: ‘Excellent meeting of the RIC Trilateral. President Putin, President Xi Jinping and I discussed a wide range of subjects that would further cement the friendship between our nations and enhance world peace.’

The sleep of reason breeds monsters - Francisco de Goya (1746-1828)

Alpesh Patel

Trump and Brexit were Foretold by Wise Heads Every waking hour I spend on trade and investment. We often speak of inward investment into the UK. Or the importance of exports. But too often we neglect investment abroad by British companies and why that is important. The wisest person on this subject is also the world’s richest man – Warren Buffett. America’s trade problems which Trump tries to solve with tariffs, and Britain with Brexit, were highlighted long ago by wise Mr Buffett. This is the warning to America, and a lesson for Britain. He said over a decade ago: “As our U.S. trade problems worsen, the probability that the dollar will weaken over time continues to be high. I fervently believe in real trade – the more the better for both us and the world. We had about$1.44 trillion of this honest-to-God trade in 2006. But the U.S. also had $.76 trillion of pseudo-trade last year – imports for which we exchanged no goods or services. (Ponder, for a moment, how commentators would describe the situation if our imports were $.76 trillion – a full 6% of GDP – and we had no exports.) Making these purchases that weren’t reciprocated by sales, the U.S. necessarily transferred ownership of its assets or IOUs to the rest of the world. Like a very wealthy but self-indulgent family, we peeled off a bit of what we owned in order to consume more than we produced. The U.S. can do a lot of this because we are an extraordinarily rich country that has behaved responsibly in the past. The world is therefore willing to accept our bonds, real estate, stocks and businesses. And we have a vast store of these to hand over. These transfers will have consequences, however. Already the prediction I made last year about one fall-out from our spending binge has come true: The “investment income” account of our country – positive in every previous year since 1915 – turned negative in 2006. Foreigners now earn more on their U.S. investments than we do on our investments abroad. In effect, we’ve used up our bank account and turned to our credit card. And, like everyone who gets in hock, the U.S. will now experience “reverse compounding” as we pay ever-increasing amounts of interest on interest. I want to emphasize that even though our course is unwise, Americans will live better ten or twenty years from now than they do today. Percapita wealth will increase. But our citizens will also beforced every year to ship a significant portion of their current production abroad merely to service the cost of our huge debtor position. It won’t be pleasant to work part of each day to pay for the over-consumption of your ancestors. I believe that at some point in the future U.S. workers and voters will find this annual “tribute” so onerous that there will be a severe political backlash. How that will play out in markets is impossible to predict – but to expect a “soft landing” seems like wishful thinking.” This last sentence – “I believe that at some point in the future U.S. workers and voters will find this annual “tribute” so onerous that there will be a severe political backlash.” Predicted Trump. It also predicted Brexit. All the way back in 2006. Editor: CB Patel Asian Voice is published by Asian Business Publications Ltd Karma Yoga House, 12 Hoxton Market, (Off Coronet Street) London N1 6HW. Tel: 020 7749 4080 • Fax: 020 7749 4081 Email: Website: INDIA OFFICE Bureau Chief: Nilesh Parmar (BPO) AB Publication (India) Pvt. Ltd. 207 Shalibhadra Complex, Opp. Jain Derasar, Nr. Nehru Nagar Circle, Ambawadi, Ahmedabad-380 015. Tel: +91 79 2646 5960 Email: © Asian Business Publications

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8 - 14 December 2018

Plastics firm fined over worker's death A plastics firm has been fined £293,000 after a worker died in an accident at its factory. Tarsem Singh, 52, died of a heart attack a day after being hit by machinery in April 2016. An inquest had previously heard the end cap of a pressurised moulding machine blew off and hit him at a speed of up to 80mph, fracturing his chest and jaw. Nylacast Engineering Plastic Solutions admitted health and safety offences at Northampton Magistrates' Court. An inquest last year heard another worker had been injured

in an accident involving the machine in a similar incident that went unreported. A safety expert told the court the machine had not been properly risk assessed, and Nylacast admitted failing to provide a suitable risk assessment for the machine. The company - which admitted contravening regulation 12 of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 and regulation 3 of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 - said it no longer uses the machine.

Tarsem Singh

Sentencing them, District Judge Tim Daber said employees

had been exposed to risk for some time, and described the incident as "an accident waiting to happen". Speaking after the hearing, Mr Singh's wife Kulwender Kaur said she was "learning to live without" her husband. "The pain is not going away at all," she said. "I don't think it ever will." Mussa Mohamed, from Nylacast, said the company tried "to follow best practices at all times", adding that it "will continue to work as hard as we can to make sure that our people are looked after".

Bristol suicide-vest terrorist Isa Ibrahim denied parole A man jailed for a minimum of 10 years for plotting to blow himself up using a suicide vest and home-made explosives has been denied parole, it has emerged. Isa Ibrahim, from Bristol, was convicted in 2008 of making explosives with intent and of preparing terrorist acts at a shopping centre in the city. The Parole Board said following an oral hearing in April, "a panel did not direct the release of Isa Ibrahim".

Isa Ibrahim

It said Ibrahim would be eligible for a further review in two

years' time. Born Andrew Philip Michael, he converted to Islam in 2006 and changed his name to Isa Ibrahim. Ibrahim became radicalised after accessing extreme material online and was arrested when police were alerted by a tip-off from the Muslim community. Ibrahim, who was 20 at the time, was given an indeterminate sentence and the judge ruled he should serve a minimum of 10 years in jail.

The Parole Board said it could not make public its reasons relating to Ibrahim's case but explained decisions were "solely focused on whether a prisoner would represent a significant risk to the public after release and whether their risk can be safely managed by the National Probation Service in the community". It said the "decision on risk is based on the detailed evidence in the dossier and evidence provided at the oral hearing".

Leeds plasterer 'slashed screaming man's arm to the bone' in dispute over money A plasterer used one of his work tools to slash his former employee's arm during a dispute over unpaid wages. Mohammed Faraj left his victim screaming in pain with a gaping wound down to the bone during the street attack. Leeds Crown Court heard the weapon used by Faraj was a tool used to carry out plastering work and looked like a samurai sword. Mehran Nassiri, prosecuting, said the 21-year-old victim was also a plasterer and knew Faraj from doing work for him. Mr Nassiri said the background to the attack was a dispute between the two men over

£180 Faraj owed the victim for work he had done for him. Faraj targeted the victim in the early hours of September 3 last year as he walked along Kelsall Terrace, Leeds. The defendant stopped his car and walked over to the victim holding the weapon before swinging it at his left arm. The victim started screaming as Faraj walked back to his car and drove away. He was bleeding heavily from the wound and went to a nearby cafe for help. The victim received treatment at Leeds General Infirmary for a cut that went through muscle down to the bone. He also suffered nerve damage which

took around a year to heal. Faraj, 37, of Nutting Grove Terrace, Farsley, pleaded guilty to unlawful wounding. He has previous convictions for criminal damage and a public order offence. Probation officer Michael Berry said Faraj had expressed remorse when interviewed about the offence, saying: "I regret it big time. Big time." The court heard Faraj moved to the UK from Palestine in 1999 and gained a qualification in plastering. Marcus Waite, mitigating, said it was accepted that Faraj had used serious violence but said the attack was out of char-

Mohammed Faraj

acter. Faraj was jailed for two years, three months. Recorder David Gordon told Faraj: "An immediate custodial sentence is inevitable because it is a serious matter."

Shopkeeper told police he had no idea what caused Leicester explosion A shopkeeper accused of murdering five people in a shop explosion told the police in a series of interviews he had no idea what caused the blast, a jury heard. Aram Kurd, who ran the Zabka store, in Leicester's Hinckley Road, told officers he knew nothing about petrol being brought into the premises before the supermarket and flat above went up in the explosion, on the evening of Sunday February 25. He said that he was in a rear store room when he heard a loud bang and was sent flying amidst debris and managed to escape out of the back. Kurd, 34, and Arkan Ali, 37, and Hawkar Hassan, 33, all deny five counts of murder or manslaughter. Residents in the two-storey flat above the shop, Mary Ragoobeer, 46, and her two sons,

Sean, 17, and Shane, 18, were killed in the explosion, along with Shane's girlfriend, Leah Beth Reek, 18. Ali's girlfriend, Viktorija Ijevleva, 22, who was working in the shop also died. Kurd, of Hillary Place, Braunstone, Leicester, Ali, of The three defendants in the explosion trial: Aram Kurd, 33, Hawkar Hassan, 32, and Arkan Ali, 37 Drake Close, Crown Court trial heard that the this to your shop?" Oldham, and Hassan, of Eld interviewing police officer asked Kurd replied: "No...I can't Road, Coventry, also deny conKurd: "Do you know what hapblame anyone." spiring together - and with Miss pened to cause the explosion?" He went on to say that he did Ijevleva - to commit insurance Kurd replied: "No." not notice, hear, see or smell fraud, allegedly relating to a fire He was asked if he might anything out of the ordinary at the shop, which was expected have done something either by prior to the explosion. to pay out up to £300,000. accident or on purpose. The prosecution was due to The prosecution allege it was Kurd said: "No, no nothing." close the Crown's case on a deliberate arson attack by the The officer asked: "Can you Tuesday (December 4). defendants. think of anyone who would do The trial continues. Then jury at the Leicester

in brief TWO CHARGED WITH DEATH OF AHSANULLAH NAWAZAI Two people have been charged with murdering a 20-yearold who was found fatally stabbed near a primary school. Ahsanullah Nawazai was found by a member of the public in Walsingham Way, London Colney, Hertfordshire, at 19:15 GMT on Wednesday. He later died in hospital. Police said he had suffered multiple stab wounds. Anis Anderson, 20, of Fordwych Road, London, and Carla Callum, 30, from Walsingham Way, are due before Hatfield Remand Court later. Mr Nawazai, from Walthamstow in London, was discovered near Saint Bernadette Catholic Primary School.

FAILED EXETER BOMBER 'ANGERED BY PRAYER BAN' A failed bomber who tried to blow up a restaurant 10 years ago felt "justified" in assaulting hospital staff, an inquest has heard. Nicky Reilly, 30, converted to Islam and changed his name to Mohammed Saeed Alim, before his 2008 bombing attempt. He launched an attack on staff at Broadmoor psychiatric hospital in 2015 after feeling "anger" about a ban on communal prayers, the inquest was told. Reilly was then moved to HMP Manchester and found dead in his cell in 2016. Jurors in Heywood, Greater Manchester, are considering the circumstances surrounding his death. Reilly was jailed for life with a minimum of 18 years in January 2009 after the botched attempt to set off a homemade bomb in the Giraffe restaurant. On Monday, Reilly's mother Kim told the court she thought her son was an "easy target" for radicalisation. The hearing continues.


A special constable who came to the aid of two stabbing victims in Leeds city centre has been praised for giving lifesaving first aid under extreme pressure. Usmaan Akhtar was only on his fourth tour of duty as part of Operation Capital, which aims to keep revellers safe on a Friday and Saturday night, when a fight broke out on Lower Briggate on July 15. One of the first on the scene, where he found two people had been stabbed, he remained calm and administered first aid until paramedics arrived. He was among those to be recognised at the Leeds District Police Awards 2018, where a number of awards were also presented to those who had helped save people threatening to take their lives.



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8 - 14 December 2018


6 UK



8 - 14 December 2018

Vyman Solicitors welcome Deputy High Commissioner to Gujarat & Rajasthan Geoff Wain, the British Deputy High Commissioner to Gujarat and Rajasthan, received a warm welcome by Vyman Solicitors on 27th November at the Blue Room Sports Venue. His Excellency, Geoff Wain took the occasion to meet entrepreneurs, business owners, property developers, investors and professionals from the British Asian diaspora in the UK. Anup Vyas, MD of Vyman Solicitors described Geoff as an “enthusiastic, sincere and a genuine promoter of strong relations between the UK and India”. Geoff Wain has been with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for close to 37 years now and has been based in Ahmedabad, India for four years. Geoff spoke about the strong progress India, and in particular, Gujarat is making in economic terms, including in the ease of doing business rankings. He also introduced Peter Cook, a career diplomat, who will

be replacing Geoff in the New Year. Peter encouraged all those interested in doing business in Gujarat to contact and approach him at the British High Commission in Ahmedabad. CB Patel also paid tribute to Geoff’s work in promoting a ‘Living Bridge’ between the two countries and in fostering business, trade, and cultural ties. The event also celebrated the recent merger of legal firm PKP French into Vyman Solicitors making the latter one of the largest law practices in Harrow. Vyman provide legal advice on various legal fronts including commercial and residential property law, business transactions, commercial litigation, among a host of other legal issues. Additionally they also specialize in family law, including divorce, cohabitation and child custody; and private client matters, such as conveyancing, wills, trusts and probate. The Vyman team thanked Geoff

Sanjay Rughani - Sterling Finance, Ashok Patel - Travelpack, Anup Vyas - Vyman, Raju Patel - Prideview, Dilip Patel - Healthaid, Peter Cook, Geoff Wayne, CB Patel - Publisher/Editor, Mitesh Vekaria - Vascroft Contractors, Shashi Vekerai - Vascroft, Kishor Parmar - Advertising Manager - Asian Voice and Gujarat Samachar, Simon Stephens - Truspine Technologies Raju Patel. - Health Aid, Anant Patel - Healthaid

Peter Cook, Geoff Wayne and Anup Vyas

Wain and Peter Cook as well as Naresh Patel, the host of the evening's gala and everyone who had

taken the time to attend their occasion and wish them all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Goodbye Gujarat

Geoff Wain, British Deputy High Commissioner, Gujarat and Rajasthan

In six weeks’ time, I will leave Gujarat after four years as the first British Deputy High Commissioner to Gujarat and Rajasthan. The UK is the only country to have a diplomatic office in Gujarat. We are here because Gujarat is important to the UK. It is important to us politically. It is important to us economically. And, with about 800,000 people in the UK of Gujarati origin, it is important to us culturally, socially and spiritually. This year, my office will be expanding again with new staff to deliver even more trade and investment successes in sectors such as energy, life sciences, pharmaceuticals and chemicals. The British government now has 10 offices in India and we employ almost a thousand people in our network. We have more staff and more offices in India than in any other single country anywhere in the world, including the US and China. That is how important the British government views its relationship with India. In Gujarat, we focus on promoting trade and investment and on developing what Prime Minister Modi refers to as the “Living Bridge” between India and the UK. I am pleased to say that we are making excellent progress on both.

Last year, we were given a target by London to deliver £16m in new export wins from the UK to Gujarat. We delivered just over £300m. The macroeconomic picture is just as encouraging. Bilateral trade between the UK and India is strong and evergrowing, up 19% to £19bn in 2017/18. UK exports to India grew by 32% in 2017/18, totalling £7.6bn, and registering their fourth successive quarter of double-digit growth. The 800 UKowned companies active in India create 1 in every 20 jobs in India’s organised sector, employ over 800,000 people, turn over £80bn and make £10bn in profits, most of which are retained in India. Since 2010 the UK has been the largest G20 investor in India. India invests more in the UK than it does in the rest of the EU combined and is now the UK’s fourth largest investment source, creating 5,649 new jobs in the last year alone. There are 800 Indian companies in the UK employing nearly 110,000 people - over 30,000 in the digital and tech economy. And London is of course the global home of capital. Over the past two years, Indian issuers have raised over £6.5bn on the London Stock Exchange through Masala, dollar and green bonds. The “Living Bridge” between the UK and India – a term first used Prime Minister Modi - refers to the flow of people, ideas and culture between our two nations. It is a series of partnerships on mutual challenges that cumulatively demonstrate why the UKIndia relationship is an unbeatable combination. We benefit from a unique living bridge of people, ideas and institutions that sits separate to the government-

to-government relationship. No other bilateral relationship can compete with the sheer breadth of UK-India - from political, business, finance, technology, science, medicine, to soft power areas of culture, literature, arts, music, sport and food, nor the sheer historical scope of that relationship. The UK and India have a unique relationship and many common values and we are, of course, the world’s oldest and largest democracies respectively. We share a commitment to maintaining a rules-based international system – and are working in partnership across the world to promote and defend this. We are working collectively to lead the fight on global challenges such as climate change, sustainable energy, humanitarian disasters and environmental degradation. We are committed partners in the fight to transform lives through research and modern technology. We are both promoting secure, affordable and sustainable supplies of energy and reducing the cost of clean energy through sharing technology innovation and capacity building programmes. And we are both trying to improve the lives of girls and women in areas such as capacity building for marginalised women, enhancing women’s legal rights and in combating sex trafficking, child labour and bonded labour. Contrary to some media reports, our visa system is working. More than half a million UK visas were issued to Indians in the last 12 months. 9 out of 10 Indian applications are granted – above the global average. In the last year the UK granted almost 15,400 Tier 4 student visas – a 32% increase on the previous year.

Water will not allow for Brexit

Paresh Patel, Ilesh Patel, Dax Parmar, Anup Vyas, Sheetal Badiani and Kamlesh Patel

This is the third successive year that student visa numbers have increased. Indian nationals receive more Tier 2 employment visas than the rest of the world combined. Over 60,000 work visas were issued last year. 99% of Indian applications receive their visas within our 15 day service standard though our wide network of visa application centres across India. We enjoy a constructive relationship on home affairs and agree that those accused of crimes must not be able to escape justice by crossing national borders. And we both recognise and respect the independent role of the judiciary. India is a great country. The UK is a great country. When we work together, we can do great things. Although I will be leaving India in January, that great work will continue through my successor, Peter Cook, who will arrive in Gujarat in mid-January. I will be sad to go. I will miss masala chai, dhokla and khichdi. I will miss Navratri and Uttarayan. I will miss the Great Rann, the Gir lions, the world heritage city of Ahmedabad, the culture of Baroda, the innovative architecture of Surat and the engineering excellence of Rajkot. But most of all I will miss the genuine and unlimited hospitality of the Gujju who have made my wife and I feel so very, very welcome during our stay here. After 35 years with the Diplomatic Service, I can honestly say that the past 4 years in Gujarat have been the most enjoyable and rewarding of my entire career. I look forward to maintaining my links with the UK’s Gujarati diaspora and cannot wait to return to Gujarat at the earliest opportunity.

Dhiren Katwa

In 20 years we haven't taken a single step forward. Process, process, no action. This was the stark observation Lord de Ramsey DL, President of the Association of Drainage Authorities (ADA), shared with an audience of around 150 delegates at ADA's 82nd annual conference. Held in London in November, the event featured an exhibition, networking breakfast and speakers included: Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs Sue Hayman MP, John Curtin from the Environment Agency and Robert Hossen, an expert in Crisis Management, Holland. ADA's Chairman Robert Caudwell said, "Climate change is not something that will happen in the future, it is happening now." On funding, Mr Caudwell encouraged Government to give this a "fresh review", saying, "we need a formula that works for everyone." The thought-provoking presentations were followed by a Q&A session. ADA's 7 office holders, 5 male, 2 female, happen to be white, as are its 16 directors, 3 female, 13 male, which includes Neil Parish MP. While the ADA Board and membership remains undiverse, it is fully committed to embracing diversity, in its broadest definition. Chief Executive Innes Thomson said, "ADA works hard to ensure that our industry is an inclusive, diverse one." For the second year running, ADA invited 12 firstyear intake of Flood Foundation students from Brunel University, 6 women and 3 from a Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic (BAME) background. Of the latter, Catherine Nankumba, 21, is originally from the Ugandan capital Kampala. An aspiring chartered engineer, Catherine, said: "I wish to live a life of serving others through my acquired skills especially the civilians." The conference featured ADA's AGM and also saw the launch of 'Good Governance' a 72-page informative and fantastic members’ guide.



8 - 14 December 2018

Project Dignity

A Pioneer Pan India Project in the Field of Skill Development Empowering 30,000 Widows The Loomba Foundation working together with the Rotary India Literacy Mission is providing vocational skills training this year to:

 5000 widows, un-married daughters of widows and single mothers

 in the states of Delhi, Bihar, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal.  in the fields of Beauty & Wellness, Tailoring and IT.

If you wish to know more about the Dignity Project Please contact: Mr. Risto Harma at, Loomba House, 622 Western Avenue, London. W3 0TF Charity No. 1064988


8 UK


8 - 14 December 2018

Have you bought an off plan property? Recently the HMRC have won a landmarked case where an individual thought if they were buying a off plan property, they would be exempt from Capital gains tax if this was going to be their main residence. James Backhouse A gentleman purchased a property in central London it took the builders nearly three years to complete the project once he moved in, he treated the property as his main home. When the gentlemen sold the property the HMRC said that as the property had completed three years earlier when he had exchanged contracts there was a period of time when the property may have not been lived in but was in the ownership of the tax payer. This raised a large capital gain which the tax payer was not expecting so the question we ask is have you moved into a new building buying it off plan and sitting on a ticking time bomb when it comes to the unexpected capital gains tax. Also in the recent budget the HMRC reduced the period of time from eighteen months to nine months when you move out of a property before you sell it this means if you have any rental properties that you are hoping would be capital gains exempt because you have moved out more than nine months ago you could now be getting a nasty tax bill you were not expecting. There is however some good news for people who have bought a property in their own name and looking to put it into a limited company there is now an opportunity to do this and avoid capital gains tax which is been agreed by the HMRC. For more information on any of these points please get in contact with us and speak to one of our experts.

Offices in Harrow, Birmingham & Cambridge For more information please call 020 3763 8500. 262 High Road, Harrow Weald, HA3 7BB

0Continued from page 1

43% of Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) citizens in 21st-century Britain face racial abuse such that they had been unfairly overlooked for a work promotion in comparison to the 18% white people according to a new survey. The Guardian's survey of 1,000 BAME people analysed their everyday negative experiences – all frequently associated with racism – than white people in a comparison poll. “There was a time when I used to buy fairness creams just to fit in and look like one of them instead of being the only “brownie” in the group photo until the point when I realised that being brown was actually my strength,” Vaishnavi* revealed. Vaishnavi, is an undergraduate from City University and originally from India. During her university days she recalls of how people “out of curiosity” asked her how and why her English was so good and how she used to explain each time that right from our childhood to our high school education, English was our first language. “There is a general ignorance and a lack of awareness among the European students with respect to Asian cultures and identities. And at one point of time such subtle differences used to create an invisible divide among us!” she explains. But it is not about Christmas holidays or Diwali dinners or Iftar parties that mark the basic difference. That according to Vaishnavi is


Is Britain Fair? just the tip of an iceberg. Although, the UK universities claim themselves to be the most diverse with their admissions pages listing how they have global students from 50+ cultures, what is often not observed is the different cultural societies. Whether it is the Arabic, Indian society or Latin American society, the cultural diaspora of these universities is inherently fractured and amalgamation according to Vaishnavi happens only at surface levels. The Equality and Human Rights Commission has reportedly said there is a "growing body of evidence" that racism is affecting students and staff at universities. It has also pointed to racism as a possible link between the lower qualifications achieved by ethnic minority students, despite more entering higher education. Students and staff have until 15 February 2019 to submit evidence. There have been several racism-related incidents at universities in 2018 which have made national news headlines, including in University of Warwick and Nottingham Trent university. “After a few months, you just start hanging out with your own tribe because frankly enduring the same old conversation where they tell you how they like “my tanned skin colour” is a wasted nightout! I am not saying that this is the universal trend but this is what I have experienced,” added Vaishnavi. *Neha is from Warrick

University and although she doesn't find it so difficult to mix among her “white friends” being born and brought up in the UK. But even as someone who is inherently British doesn't mean that they are considered as part of their own people. It is this prejudice against the brown people that exists even today regardless of the geographical locations and is

ingrained in people's perceptions and is reflected at times of community events or student body elections. Neha recalls of this one time when she was running for the position of president for her society and the next day after being elected she saw a message on Facebook's post and it read“The only reason Neha even became a President was because she is brown and she got all her brown friends to vote for her” Neha took the issue to the

principal of the university and the comment was later taken down by the authorities. But these little things impact the confidence and shape one's personality. “On one hand the government is allowing many international students the valid visas to study at these globally acclaimed universities and on the other hand within the cultural diaspora there is so much isolation and marginalisation that it often leads to mental health issues and we see them queueing up for counselling!” According to The Guardian's survey 12% of BAME people have had racist language directed at them in the past month, rising almost to 43% in the past five years. But where does one draw the line between racism and hate crime? Sahr Al Faifi is a health worker from Cardiff and in March 2018 and at the stand up to racism rally against the splash of Nazi graffiti, she told me about how wearing a niqab attracts unwanted attention to her on a regular basis“I was walking down St. Mary's street when someone passed by pulling at my niqab and calling me a “terrorist,” Sahr had said. The number of recorded hate crime incidents have more than doubled in the last five years and is likely to be related to the aftermath of Brexit and the spate of terrorist attacks last year, according to the Home Office.

Ostrich Syndrome Rupanjana Dutta When Sajid Javid saw the footage of a Syrian refugee boy being attacked by a racist bully, he recalled his painful memories of a similar experience from his school days. He told BBC on Monday 3rd Dec, that at the age of 11, he was punched to the ground because he was Asian. Today Javid is the first Asian Home Secretary of Britain. But looking at the attack on the Syrian boy must have made Javid wonder “how can this kind of thing still go on in a country like Britain?” Let us understand how Javid was handed over this job from Amber Rudd- a true ally of Prime Minister Theresa May. The Windrush scandal had opened up the pandora's box, and it was a form of racism, which stemmed from a hostile environment, that May created. Javid at that moment was the best May had, for damage control and to prove that her policies were not racist. As a senior Tory says, for Javid the immigration policy is much personal. But for May it was longing for a Britain, that was entirely hypothetical. Britain as a country is fair, inclusive and often just. It has come a long

way since blacks, Irish and dogs were not allowed in bed & breakfasts. But Brexit has revealed how Britain continues to remain racist even at its subconscious level, years after the word 'diplomacy' was coined by them. What is Theresa May trying to do? Home Office has still not agreed the plans with No 10 about the government's 'white paper' on immigration, that was promised more than a year ago. Cabinet has no collective position and the Conservative party is in a total mess about the meaning of referendum and what kind of country UK will be after it leaves EU. Britain's former 'colonial subordinates' and now so called 'commonwealth countries' are not there to bail out a decaying economy and severe austerity. A new set of trade rules are to be considered- but May’s sentiment towards UK's immigration policy has already alienated the prospects. While Javid calls himself a big fan of immigration, and believes this country is stronger in so many ways because of its diversity, it is not an epiphany that May will ever actually have. For an

Anglo-Saxon vicar's daughter, immigration is more about 'a culture' she has known and grown up believing (as Rachel Sylvester rightly points out in her column in The Times), and it is ambitious for Javid to expect May to turn a new leaf after all these years. But the irony is Brexit was never meant to be about immigration, a Brexiter told Asian Voice. It was meant to be nationalistic, a revolt against constraints on British sovereignty. May as Home Secretary made it all about immigration. They won the 2016 referendum by playing the race card. May is trying to represent herself as a 'bloody difficult woman' and in a man's world, perhaps it is a defensive act more than a personality trait. But it is also becoming her greatest vulnerability. She has run out of options, and her narrow minded attitude may actually put her out of job. Government on the ropes Britons who favour Brexit, portray it as a simple change of trade rules from EU to WTO standards. They have named the remainers’ worries about food rationing, or medicine shortages as propaganda of the 'Project Fear'.

They insist that no deal is greatly preferable than a poor one. But Ostrich syndrome actually does not erase the real challenges ahead. Somehow May thinks that Britons living in Europe will not be affected by Brexit, but the reality is different. France has already demanded for work permits, if there is a nodeal Brexit. If Britain creates obstacles for EU, it will inturn create obstacles for Briton. MPs forcing May to disclose full legal advice on Brexit, proves May should understand that people who live in glass houses should not throw stones. The result of disclosure could be a fall out leading to people's vote or perhaps another general election, especially if DUP pulls out. As Dr Vince Cable said to Asian Voice, "This is now a government on the ropes. Theresa May's majority has evaporated, and the credibility of her deal is evaporating with it. The Commons is now very likely to defeat the Government again next week on the Brexit deal, at which point the country must be given a People's Vote, and asked to choose between the deal or remaining in the EU."





8 - 14 December 2018

Skanda Holidays wins British Travel Awards 2018 Skanda Holidays has been announced as the gold winner of Best Holiday Company to Australasia, Best Holiday Company to Southern Asia and Best Holiday Company to South East Asia in the prestigious 2018 British Travel Awards. It was announced on 28 November at a glamorous Gala Awards ceremony, held in London, which was attended by more than 800 travel industry people. The British Travel Awards is a proud independent organisation, verified by leading global business practitioners Deloitte. This practice of integrity and transparency has established the British Travel Awards as the largest and most influential poll of consumer opinion on companies operating in the leisure travel market. The Awards serve to recognise all that is great about the travel companies preferred by holidaymakers from Europe. To win a British Travel Award is a true achievement.

P Hopkinson, N Alobaidi, A Pritchard and C Thiru

Skanda Holidays & Team An independent travel company, Skanda Holidays is based in Birmingham and Edinburgh, who offer specialist travel packages to the worlds most exciting destinations. They tailor make holiday packages for discerning travellers to Asia, South America, North America, Europe, Oceania, Antarctica and Africa to name but a few, as well as more intimate itineraries to some the worlds most intriguing and hard to reach places. The team at Skanda Holidays is comprised of some of the most passionate professionals in the industry, specialists in their fields and with a local

and intimate knowledge of their area specialism. Skanda Holidays apply extensive research and thorough study into what the traveller needs and wants and are able to offer the ultimate and most luxurious of travel options to the world’s most discerning clientèle - whether an individual, family, honeymooners, groups or corporate clients. The company's Managing Director Mr Thiru told Asian Voice, “We couldn’t be more delighted, Its a wonderful moment and feel very honoured to receive the Britain’s biggest Travel Award in front of an audience of over 1000 senior leisure travel company

executives and representatives from consumer and trade media. It’s a helpful reminder that the work we are doing is really appreciated - it makes the long days and nights that bit more palatable and it’s wonderful to know that what we are doing, has such a positive impact on people - both the consumer and the trade.” Congratulating his team at Skanda Holidays and consumers, he added, “It’s the third year we’ve received Gold Award in the 'Best Holiday Company to Southern Asia' category, in 2014, 2015 and 2018 now , and two times Gold Award in the ‘Best Holiday Company to Australasia’ category, in 2015 and 2018. It’s thanks to our exceptional customer service standards and attention to detail that we were able to win multi- awards in 2018 at the BTA’s, and with continued innovation and dedication we will return successfully in forth coming years. On behalf of the entire team at Skanda Holidays, I take this opportunity to thank all our customers, without

whom we couldn’t have achieved this, for giving us such great support and to those of you who have yet to travel with Skanda Holidays, we look forward to welcoming you onto one of our award-winning holidays soon, best wishes and many thanks.” Speaking on the achievements of Skanda Holidays, British Travel Awards’ chief executive Lorraine Barnes Burton said, “Skanda Holidays is to be congratulated on the achievement of three Gold Winners of the coveted British Travel Awards 2018 – the largest consumer voted awards programme in the UK; to win is truly an accolade. The travelling public regard the British Travel Awards winners logo as the benchmark for excellence when it comes to finding out who really are the best travel companies and The British Travel Awards are the only travel industry accolade voted for exclusively by the consumer and the Awards serve to recognise all that is great about travel, as experienced by the travelling public.“

Newham principal shortlisted for prestigious award

Mouhssin Ismail, principal at Newham Collegiate Sixth Form Centre (NCS), which joined City of London Academies Trust (CoLAT) in January 2018, has been Mouhssin Ismail shortlisted for the Tes FE Awards 2019 ‘FE leader of the year’ category.Newham Collegiate Sixth Form Centre has also been shortlisted in the sixth-form college of the year. Ismail, 39, grew up in Forest Gate, Newham, first established NCS in 2014 with the aim of providing outstanding education for local students, encouraging as many to attend prestigious universities in the UK and abroad. He changed his career as a leading City lawyer to become a teacher because he felt he wanted to give something back to the community in which he grew up. Speaking about the award, Ismail said, “With the right attitude and guidance I believe our students can achieve great things. We have witnessed double digit Oxbridge offers, 95% Russell Group offers and the first student from Newham to secure a place at MIT, the best university in the world for engineering and mathematics. “At NCS we want our students to be well-rounded citizens who have high expectations of themselves and those around them. We want them to grow up to become leaders in their chosen fields and, ultimately be able to give something back to future generations...”




8 - 14 December 2018

Lohanas in the UK

British Isles and Brexit Bedlam

Underfunding of Councils

Further to your very interesting article about the British Lohanas (p16-17, AV 1-7 Dec) please spare some more space to publish some additional information. Following are some other prominent Lohanas in the UK: - Mr Mansukhlal (Baloobhai) Popatlal Radia was the first President of Lohana union Greater London and also first President of Lohana Community of UK. - Mr. Dhanjibhai Tanna, who served for decades in many institutions, including Brent Indian Association, Hindu Council of Brent and was also the President of Lohana Community North London. - Late Ratibhai Jobanputra, who served the Sanatan Temple in Wembley for many years; also the Lohana Community of UK, whose President he was. He had also served in the Mahatama Gandhi Foundation for many years. - Late Ratibhai Ganatra, who served many institutions in Leicester and who was also President of Lohana Community of UK. - Late Haribhai Samani deserves credit for his many decades of work, particularly for bereaved. - Late Chandrakant Rabheru, who served the Jalaram Mandir Greenford, Jalaram Jyot, Sudbury and National Council of Gujarati Organisations (NCGO) for many years. - Mr. Shantoobhai Ruparell, who has served for many years on Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan and the Lohana Community North London, whose President he was in the eighties. - Mr. Himatbhai Radia, who served Hindu Council of Brent and also Lohana Community North London, whose President he was in the eighties. - Mr Kishore Devani, who served in many institutions including Lohana Community North London, whose President he was in the 1970s. - Mr Narendrabhai Chotai who served the Lohana Community South London for many years and also Lohana Community of UK, whose President he was. - Mr Bhaskarbhai Raja, who served the Lohana Community South London and Lohana Community of UK, whose President he was. - Mrs Urmilaben Thakkar MBE, currently President of Lohana Community North London, has served in many institutions. - Mrs Pannaben Raja was President of Lohana Community of UK which she served for many years. - Mr Rajnibhai Khiroya, who has been President of Shree Jalaram Mandir, Greenford for many years. Also, there have been half a dozen councillors elected to local councils, among whom are the following: - Mr. Nitin Parshotam, a Brent Councillor from 1986 to 1990. - Mr Dhiraj Kataria, who was Councillor in London Boroughs of Redbridge and Brent for a total of twelve years. And who has served on many institutions including JCWI, Race Equality Councils and Lohana Community East London and Lohana Community of Uk. - Mrs Ansuya Sodha, who was a Councillor in Barnet for many years. - Mr Narendra Makanji has been a councillor for London Borough of Haringey for many years. Dhiraj Kataria By email There may have been many others, feel free to write to us about them, and we will publish about them in following issues. - Editor

Just about eight thousand years ago there were no humans on the land now we call British Isles. The present isles were still connected by land bridge to the main land Europe. Then successive waves of initial humans colonized the land from Isle of Wight to Shetlands Isles and waning of ice age created the present British Isles. In the historical period, the isles were invaded by Romans, Anglo-Saxons, Jutes, Vikings and Normans. After the Medieval period, the homogenized islanders’ brilliance shined which invented steam engine, electricity, etc. and colonized many lands all over the world and created countries of the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and other smaller ones. After the Second World War, British Islanders’ fortune started to wane and their influence also diminished in the world. In the early 1970s they joined the European Common Market to strengthen their economy and hence their influence. However, the ECM became EU and started to constitute USE (United States of Europe) by creating single currency and advancing a notion of a single army. This made alarm bells ringing for the loss of identity of once mighty empire builders which ended in a referendum in 2016 and resulted in the exit vote from the EU. The main proponents of the Brexit, viz. Farage, Johnson, Davies and others abrogated their responsibility and jumped the unsteady ship which left mainly the opponents to negotiate the terms of exit from the EU. Mrs May has done a great job under the circumstances and pretty soon there will be a vote in our Parliament on the terms. Now, it is up to us to show our MPs which way to vote. Let us do a good job of it. Narsibhai Patel New Malden

The situation facing the councils is dire because of underfunding and ever increasing demands of security, housing, fighting crime, homelessness and inflation. Hence, Councils are appealing for cash injection to avoid ‘catastrophic collapse’ because of the heavy cuts they have faced for the last 8 years. Some councils are facing bankruptcy. English councils face a funding gap of $5.8bn according to the Local Government Association which is causing serious problems for them to provide services to their residents. It looks like the appeals by the councils are falling on deaf ears, as a result of this imposed austerity. Immediate injection of funds is the need of the hour to avoid collapse of key council services. The most deprived areas have been severely affected with cuts of almost three times the national average. This is an unacceptable burden which has fallen on the shoulders of the councils and required to remedied promptly to save them from collapse. This matter at an absolute minimum need to cancel the funding settlement for further cut of £1.3bn to next year ‘s Revenue Support Grant. It would be highly irresponsible, if further cuts are made in view of perilous financial deficits the councils are currently facing. The announcement by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government representative, that they will be confirming local government funding for the financial year 2019/20 soon, will hopefully address the underfunding issues of the long suffering councils. Baldev Sharma Rayners Lane, Harrow.

Spending Spree After the great spending spree of Black Friday a couple of weeks ago, Christmas will soon be upon us, and the streets and shops have already become overcrowded with people on a shopping spree to buy presents for their friends and family. In these hard times, one would have thought that people would be vary of wasting money. As if the the spending spree at Christmas is not enough, very soon the great sales will start and the shop till you drop culture will take on. People will flock in droves to the high streets to undergo a retail therapy through bargain hunting. But where is the money coming from? People buy on tick by borrowing from banks, financial institutions or pawn brokers without thinking that the money borrowed has eventually to be paid with exorbitant interest charges. People will borrow more to pay the debt and thus the vicious circle will continue revolving. We go to sales for bargain hunting and come away with things which we did not need but we buy them because we think we have grabbed a bargain by getting them at a cheaper price. One must haggle by asking for discounts and most of the time one can strike a bargain and come away with goods either at a lower price or receive additional benefits in cash or kind. It is indeed necessary to haggle for a bargain price otherwise we fork out much more than the item’s worth. Dinesh Sheth Newbury Park, Ilford

We are grateful to all letter writers for more and more versatile letters well within word limit. Please keep contributing as always. If you are new, then write to Rupanjana at - AV

PM Modi Makes Waves At G20 Summit India’s growing importance as fastest growing economy in the world, especially under popular democracy, is a minor miracle, as India with all its diversity is more like mini continent rather than an independent nation of more than a billion people. No one gave independent India a second glance to survive as free and fair democracy, especially with 500 semi-independent states within a State, some with their own private army. War-time hero Winston Churchill predicted India’s demise within short period, nation disintegrating into small independent nations of no importance! Our gratitude goes to Sardar Patel for India’s unity, whose contribution was ignored, brushed under carpet during Nehru Gandhi era, but now duly recognized by BJP government under PM Modi who has put India on world map as the most desirable nation to do business with. PM Modi was accorded great respect and was in demand for side-summits where real business is conducted. Modi succeeded in arranging trilateral side-summit with indemand US President Donald Trump and Japanese PM Shinzo Abe, indeed a close and loyal friend of India. With Japanese help, India could become leading economic power of Asia, replacing China whose labour cost is outstripping that of India and political uncertainty created by China’s high-handed policy to colonize South China Sea, breaking all international treaties, ignoring Hague’s judgement and threatening free passage in international waters, upsetting

many nations, some close friends of China, like Vietnam and Philippines. The second side-summit Modi succeeded to arrange was with Russian President Vladimir Putin and China’s President Xi Jinping where bilateral trade, security and such issues of common interest were discussed. Besides these two meetings, Modi also met British PM Teresa May, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, UN General Secretary Antonio Guterres and few more. PM Modi put forward 9 point agenda to make the world a better, democratic place, free of terrorism and to deny fugitive economic offenders a safe heaven, perhaps with Britain in mind, where Indian, Russian and billionaires from many countries find safe heaven. This is indeed disgrace for Britain, as it professes to be law-abiding nation, yet gives refuge to terrorists, looters and even to spies, double-agents who have betrayed their motherlands for “A fist Full of Dollars!” Let us hope that Labour and Conservative Friends of India use their influence to stop Britain being used as dumping ground, too pusillanimous to undesirable criminals before it loses dedicated friends like India who stood-by Britain in our hour of need during two world wars. Britain who is already a pariah nation in EU, could ill afford losing India as a loyal friend, especially now when Brexit is on the horizon! Bhupendra M. Gandhi By email

Watch Your Diet Why do so many elderly Asians have walking difficulties? Those afflicted are mostly obese, placing enormous pressure on their knees and feet as they heave their bodies forward with the help of walking sticks, zimmer frames and crutches. Maybe their diet is to blame coupled with an alarming addiction to ghee-laden sweets (which incidentally I love). But somehow I manage to restrict my intake, summoning tremendous willpower to decline my third or fourth jilabee, gulab jamun or doodh pera. Rudy Otter By email

Fracking: Is It Boom Or Bust! The need for cheap energy is so great that countries are willing to take a gamble to be self-sufficient in energy sector. When countries like Saudi Arabia, Russia, Iran, Nigeria, Canada and Venezuela have abundance of oil and gas in reserve underground, waiting to be explored and exploited, there is no need to look for energy in deep seas, in Artic Circle, buried under billions of tons of snow and now fracking that is definitely detrimental for the wellbeing of nation like Britain. Although America is successfully exploiting fracking phenomena, becoming virtually self-sufficient in energy sector, it is in unique position, as America is such a vast country with open, parsley populated States like Arizona, Texas, Nevada and Alaska where such exploration can be safely carried out without risk to human population, as on most part, fracking generates minor tremors, akin to earthquakes! But it is a different ball game for Britain, as it a small nation, the most densely populated nation in Europe, recently overtaking Netherland and the third in the world, behind Japan and Bangladesh, ignoring minor nations. Fracking is relatively new and unique way of releasing energy by fracking rocks underground using “Waste Frack Fluid” process known as “Hydraulic Fracking” thus releasing gas that is brought to surface under pressure, using vast amount of water. There is divided opinion about fracking causing earthquakes, although most scientists agree that fracking does not cause earthquakes directly but vast amount of water inserted under great pressure may be the real culprit. After the first fracking in England, numbers of minor tremors, just visible on “Richter Scale” were observed near Blackpool, the area not associated with minor earthquakes. There were only two notable earthquakes recorded in Britain in the last 200 years, in 1931 near Dogger Bank and near Chichester way back in 1884. Indeed Britain and most of Northern Europe lies outside designated area associated with fault line responsible for serious and often occurrence of earthquakes, like California, Eastern Pacific region affecting countries like Japan, Philippines and Indonesia where earthquakes and Tsunami tragedies are common occurrence. Fracking, a lackadaisical process, is indeed a serious wound on Mother Earth, especially when nations like France and Germany; few among many have turned to solar, wind, hydro and nuclear energy, bypassing fracking all together. Britain is blessed in natural resources to produce clean energy using wind and tidal waves with 1800 miles of obliging coastline, although we lack sunshine and rivers that could produce cheap hydroelectricity. No wonder “Friends of Earth” are up in arms, protesting furiously in forlorn hope of derailing fracking. Kumudini Valambia By email





8 - 14 December 2018

Unconditional offers Parents 'must not used to 'get people abdicate duties' to through door' teachers Some universities are recruiting students with unconditional offers during the application process, says the university admissions service Ucas. They are telling students that A-level grade requirements will be dropped completely if they put the university down as their first choice. It comes as new Ucas figures show onethird of applicants aged 18 received an unconditional offer last year. England's Education Secretary Damian Hinds said the news was "disturbing". He added: "The systematic use of unconditional offers is not in the interest of students and they should not be used just to get people through the door. I expect universities to use them responsibly and where institutions cannot justify the rising numbers being offered, I have made clear to the Office for Students that they should use the full range of powers at their disposal to take action." Head teachers urged students to resist the "inducement" of such offers and universities to stop making them. Association of School and College Leaders general secretary

Geoff Barton said the practice could lead students to choose a course which is not the right one for them. "We are particularly concerned about students being required to make a university their first choice in return for an unconditional offer. It is essential that students choose the course which is right for them rather than ending up on an unsuitable course which they later regret. We advise them to resist this inducement and urge universities to desist from this practice." Ucas has analysed the impact of what it calls "conditional unconditional offers" for the first time. It defined conditional unconditional ones as those which are initially made by the university as conditional, then updated to unconditional if the offer is accepted as the student's first (firm) choice. It also found 34.4% of 18year-old applicants from England, Wales and Northern Ireland received at least one unconditional offer. In Scotland, the applications process is arranged differently and so are not included in the analysis.

Parents should not expect schools to police children's eating and exercise, or toilet train pupils, Ofsted boss Amanda Spielman will say this week. England's chief inspector for schools will argue the answer to the obesity crisis lies in the home, and parents should not "abdicate responsibility". Neither can schools be a "panacea" for knife crime or child neglect, she will add in her second annual report. Two studies have this year queried the benefit of school anti-obesity schemes. In February, the British Medical Journal reported that a year-long anti-obesity programme involving more than 600 West Midlands primary school pupils yielded no improvements.

And in July an Ofsted study of 60 schools found no link between efforts to tackle obesity and pupils' weight. Ms Spielman highlights concerns that - by the time they start primary school almost a quarter of children in England are overweight or obese. This rises to over a third by the time they move on to secondary school. Ms Spielman will also argue that by expecting schools to tackle gang-related crime or child neglect, society risks not only distracting them from their core purpose but also failing to solve the problems. Such complex matters need to be dealt with by those with the correct knowledge and expertise, she will argue.

Biggest winners and losers from degrees Women studying maths at Oxford and men taking economics at Bristol get the biggest increase in earnings from going to university, says an analysis of salaries at the age of 29. The study, from the Department for Education and Institute for Fiscal Studies, says women are much more likely to gain from getting a degree. Women with a degree earn on average 28% more than non-graduate women. Men with degrees earn an average of 8% more than non-graduates. But a third of men go to universities which give them only a "negligible" pay advantage, despite the cost of fees. The lowest for earnings for men is studying philosophy at Sussex - and for women it is computing at Westminster. The report, based on tax records of people who went to school in England and then went to university in England, Wales or Scotland, looks at how going to university might affect earnings. Setting aside any social benefits, it's asking if it's worth the cash, when graduates are leaving with an average of £50,000 of debt. A woman with a degree on average earns £6,700 more per year than a

non-graduate woman - with women improving their earnings for almost every course at every university. But the difference is much narrower for men, with a male graduate on average earning £2,700 more than a non-graduate. There are tougher questions for the one-third of men who go to universities which give "negligible or negative impact" on earnings compared with those without a degree. The report says getting a degree is clearly an "excellent investment" for women, because their earnings are so much higher than non-graduate women. Much of this is because women without degrees are particularly likely to be low earners - and so the gap between them and graduates is likely to be wider. This could be because women without degrees are likely to be in particularly low-paid jobs. But another factor is that non-graduate women in their 20s are twice as likely to be working part-time as women with degrees. This could be because women who do not go to university tend to have children earlier than graduate women.

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8 - 14 December 2018

SCRUTATOR’S ‘Where others saw Milk, One Man saw a Revolution. One man transformed a milk-deficit country into the the largest milk producing country in the world. One man transformed lives of women farmers, empowering them financial independence. One man transformed a pouch of milk into a symbol of courage and commitment. On Dr Verghese Kurien’s 97th Birth Anniversary [November 26] 158 lakh [1.58 million] farmer families salute the Vision of the Man who transformed a Movement into one of Dr Verghese Kurien India’s best loved brand. The passage above appeared as a full-page statement in The Times of India (November 26). There were similar displays on TV channels – a tribute to a truly remarkable man, one of the greatest of his generation in India and the world beyond. Dr Verghese Kurien combined humanity, science and business sense into an all-embracing vision which drove to the heights of human endeavour and accomplishment. Born in Kerala, he travelled to New Zealand – a world centre of agriculture and agricultural science - returning to a newly independent India in 1949 with a doctorate. Then Home Minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel advised him to go to Gujarat and see what he could do. He went to Anand and lived there for the next 64 years and more until his death three years ago. Shyam Benegal, the iconic documentary filmmaker, did a cinematic portrait of Dr Kurien as man and visionary. Daughter’s take Nirmala Kurien, daughter of Verghese Kurien said her father, being an atheist, religion played no part in his life. Neither did it do so in her mother’s. Although Nirmala she did not name him, this appeared to be a response to the charge by BJP leader Dileep Sanghani’s accusation that Dr Kurien had diverted Amul funds for conversions to Christianity. ‘My father,’ she said, ‘lived, worked and died in his beloved Gujarat.’ She referred to the close bonds between her father and founder chairman of Amul, Tribhuvandas Patel, and to H.M. Dalaya . ‘Dalaya uncle was a brother to him. Together they, they were called the “teenmuti” [trinity] of Amul. Without one of them, the miracle called Amul would not have happened,’ said Nirmala, speaking at the National Dairy Development Board, Anand, on the anniversary of her father’s birth anniversary (Times of India November 27).

Restrain language advises Manmohan Singh to PM Former prime minister Manmohan Singh had a word of advice for current Prime Minister Narendra Modi: ‘My advice to the Prime Minister is to exercise due restraint that is becoming of the of the office of the Prime Minister…he has an obligation to not use the language that has now become common practice.’ However, he told his audience at a function in New Delhi Delhi, that his primary thoughts were on the terrible hours of 26/11 2008 when Mumbai was subjected to a terrorist assault in which 167 were killed (Hindu November 27). Little seriousness in Pakistan The Government of India issued the following statement:: ‘It is a matter of deep anguish that even after 10 years of this heinous terror attack, the families of the 167 victims from 15 countries across the globe still await closure, with Pakistan showing little sincerity in bringing the perpetrators to justice. The planners of 26/11 still roam the streets of Pakistan with impunity.’ Anniversary The anniversary memorial in Mumbai was led by President Ram Nath Kovind and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, who said India would pursue the case until the defeat of terrorism. Narriman Light House The rooftop memorial at Narriman House, the Jewish centre in Mumbai’s Colaba district was formally inaugurated and named Narriman Light House. ‘This is the only memorial that honours all the victims of the attack. Even though the attacks took place in many localities, we felt that it was one attack and the memorial should have all the names together. The water and plants are sources of energy. We

call it a living memorial,’ said Rabbi Israel Kozlovsky who heads the Narriman Light House. (Hindu November 27).

ISRO notches up further triumph

Leap in intelligence infrastructure A decade after 26/11, Maharashtra is better prepared through realtime through its Central Monitoring System and the Lawful Interception System. The State periodically receives a Global Cell Identity and the Location Area Identity from Telecom Service providers. Aside from coastal and cyber security improvements, the government in the last few years has put in place systems to provide enhanced its intelligence gathering networks; there is better coordination between all branches of the intelligence services (Hindu November 27). Elite forces augmented The Director General of the elite National Security Guard (NSG)) Sudeep Lakhtakia told the media that the force had now been equipped with state-of-the-art technology and and improved communication and surveillance capabilities. ‘The induction of of personnel from the Army and central police services is being done using psychological tests. The NSG Canine unit is more versatile – besides support and bomb detection the dofgs are trained to assault terrorists,’ said the Director General (Hindu November 27). Kartarpur corridor possibilities The Kartarpur corridor can be a ‘corridor of peace’ with ‘infinite possibilities,’ said Punjab Minister and former Indian Test cricketer Navjot Singh Siddhu in Lahore, where he was on a private visit. Two Indian Ministers, both Sikh, Harsimrast Kaur and Hardeep Puri were on a ground-breaking ceremony at Kartarpur, 130km from Lahore in Pakistan, for the 550 th anniversary of Guru Nanak, the founder of the Sikh religion. Jaw-jaw, not war-war However, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh refused to visit Pakistan until it had ceased to foment terrorism in Indian Punjab. His administration, he said, had aborted 80 terror attacks in the State, he said. In an interview with the Indian media, Pakistan Minister of Information told reporters that the wars between the two countries had been futile, ‘sustained dialogue’ was now the need of the hour (Hindu November 28).

HYSIS satellite

The Indian Space Research Organization notched up another major success when its work horse PSLV – C43 rocket placed its Hyper Spectral Imaging Satellite [HYSIS] – dubbed the ‘Sharp Eye’ – into orbit. In the 13th flight of the of the Core Alone version and 45th PSLV launch, ISRO carried a satellite each from Australia, Canada, Colombia, Finland, Malaysia, Netherlands, and Spain, and 23 satellites from the US. Functions Lodged 636km from Earth, HySIS assists in a wide range of observation applications including agriculture, forestry, geological environment, coastal zones among others (Hindu, Times of India, November 30). It is the insatiable hunger to reach the top and remain there for as long as possible that marks the true champion from the ordinary in any sport. India’s Mary Kom entered the hallowed list of immortals in women’s boxing by winning her sixth world championship gold medal in the 48 kg category. She won her first gold in 2002 and her fifth in 2010 when she was 27. To so again eigth years later is a tribute the determination of this mother of three from a farming community in Manipur. Mary Kom has set her sights on winning her seventh gold medal at the Tokyo Olympiad in 2020, and it would be unwise to bet against her. She has done India proud (Times of India November 26). Amazon India beats Flipkart According to Barclays Bank, Amazon India topped rival Filpkart in e-commerce sales by margin in the financial year ending March 2018. Within five years of its entry into India, the US giant had beaten its local rival – now owned by Walmart – despite Flipkart having a six-year head-start. They were neck-andneck till 2016-17, from when Amazon powered ahead. Latest figures show that Amazon grossed $7.5 billion to Flipkart’s $6.2

billion.(Times of India November 28). TCS vindicated by US court Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), the $20 billion Mumbai-bassed company 60 per cent of whose revenue is from the US, was given a major boost in a lawsuit when a California jury unanimously rejected claims that TCS had discriminated against non-South Asian workers against the local American workforce. ‘This will set the precedent and stop frivolous lawsuits in future on Indian IT firms in the US,’ said Parekh Jain, an independent expert. ‘This can help change the perception of IT firms in the US.’ (Business Line November 30). Cinema, theatre, advertising loses giant Alyque Padamsee (1931-2018), born in Kutch, Gujarat, made his career in Bombay (Mumbai) in the cinema, theatre, and advertising – giant in each of these chosen areas. Contemporaries, people of a younger generation, all testified to the work and presence an amazing figure – giant with an indelible imprint, leaves a void difficult to fill (Times of India, November 18, Hindu November 24).

India-Russia frigates BrahMos equipped

Magnificent Mary

PM Modi, President Putin and President Xi Jinping

Mary Kom

India is to acquire four stealth frigates from Russia, the first two direct purchase, the next two to be built at the Goa shipyard with Russian technology. All four will be equipped with the supersonic BrahMos cruise missile with a current range of 600 km was jointly manufactured by India and Russia (December 2) See page 3 for Russia, India, China Trilateral Summit.





8 - 14 December 2018

Conservative Friends of India MP Sam Gyimah resigns over celebrate the festive season Theresa May's 'naive' deal The Conservative Friends of India, (CF India) hosted its Festive Season Drinks Reception on Monday 26th November 2018 at the Taj Hotel, London. It was the perfect occasion celebrating the diversity of Britain and the contribution of the Indian diaspora in the UK. It was also an occasion to thank all those connected with the Conservative Friends of India. The event was attended by the Justice Secretary, The Rt. Hon. David Gauke MP, Alok Sharma, Minister of State for Employment at the Department of Work and Pensions, the Rt. Hon. Theresa Villiers MP, Bob Blackman MP, The Israeli Ambassador to Britain H.E. Mark Regav, Deputy High Commissioner to India, Geoff Wain, AS Rajan, Minister Coordination and SK Jha, Minister Consular at the High Commission of India. Co-Chairman Mr Zac Goldsmith MP, welcomed the guests and paid tribute to the members of Conservative Friends of India and to his fellow CoChairman Dr Rami Ranger CBE for the excellent work being done in developing a cordial relationship between the High Commission of India and the Conservative Party. He also thanked H.E. Mark Regev, The Ambassador of Israel for gracing the evening with his presence and showing solidarity with the Indian diaspora in Britain. Dr Rami Ranger CBE, along with the guests and senior representation from the Indian High Commission, S.K Jha, Minister Consular and A.S Rajan, Minister Coordination, held a minute’s silence to remem-

Zac Goldsmith MP, Co-Chairman of the Conservative Friends of India, H.E. Mark Regav,The Israeli Ambassador to Britain and Dr Rami Ranger CBE, Co-Chairman of the Conservative Friends of India

ber those who lost their lives in the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks. Dr Ranger said that India is emerging as a positive force and contributing to the prosperity of the world. India is a role model country where diversity is accepted, respected and protected by law just as it is in Britain. In the same way, we also celebrate Diwali, Eid, Vaisakhi and the birth of Lord Buddha in perfect harmony. He highlighted the significant contribution that Indians are making in Britain and he thanked the India High Commission for their support and is looking forward to working with the newly appointed Indian High Commissioner to Britain H.E. Mrs Ruchi Ghanashyam. The Rt. Hon. David Gauke MP paid tribute to the CF India and its CoChairmen Zac and Rami for making it one of the most vibrant organisations within the Conservative Party. He further highlighted the importance of India to Britain and how as a partner it is vital to further develop the relationship post-Brexit. Bob Blackman MP, Vice Chair of CF India, highlighted the importance of the ethnic vote for the Conservative Party. He was

disappointed that the gains made in the 2015 general election were not consolidated in the 2017 general election. Rt. Hon. Theresa Villiers MP, Vice Chair of CF India, stated how delighted she was to be at the function and paid tribute to the Indian diaspora and how it is most valued and how the Conservative Party shares it values with it. Alok Sharma MP, Minister of Employment, paid tribute to the Co-chairmen of CF India and how pleased he was with its success. He was proud to have been born in India and even more proud to be a British Indian. He further went on to highlight the contribution of the British Indians to the UK. Geoff Wain, the British Deputy High Commissioner in Gujarat and Rajasthan, highlighted the number of staff the British Mission has in India, numbering around 1000 and that this is the largest number of staff for any British Mission compared to any other country. This exemplified the importance of the British - India relationship. Anil Sharma, Patron of Conservative Friends of India, delivered the vote of thanks.

Met officer numbers 'could fall to the lowest level since 2002' Metropolitan Police officer numbers could fall to the lowest level since 2002 unless government funding is increased, London's mayor has claimed. Sadiq Khan said "updated and detailed" budget calculations had revealed police numbers could drop to 26,800 if the force had to make more savings. As of April, Scotland Yard had 29,924 police officers, while there were 31,075 in January 2017. Sajid Javid said the government "will deliver more resources" for police. The mayor is due to meet the home secretary on Tuesday to discuss the police funding settlement for 2019/20. Based on the new calculations the force will be required to make a further £335m worth of savings by

2022, according to Sadiq Khan's office. It said the figures had been reached assuming the mayor increases the policing element of the council tax precept by 5.1%, or £12 per household. Mr Khan said there was "no doubt" that violent crime "has been made far worse by huge government cuts to the police and youth services". While calling for more

funding, the mayor said he was "genuinely concerned about how we keep Londoners safe with officer numbers as low as 26,800". Speaking on the Today programme, the home secretary said an announcement about funding will be made "in a few days time." Sajid Javid said following the recent rise in violent crime "more has to be done" and police would be given "more resources".

Sam Gyimah

Shailesh Vara

A minister has resigned saying a row over involvement in the EU's Galileo satellitenavigation system shows the UK will be "hammered" in negotiations over a Brexit deal. Science and universities minister Sam Gyimah quit after Mrs May said the UK was pulling out of Galileo. The UK wanted to stay part of it but the EU said it would be banned from extrasecure elements of the project. Mr Gyimah said it was a foretaste of the "brutal negotiations" to come. He's the 10th member of government to resign over the agreement, which he dismissed as a "deal in name only". He said he intended to vote against the deal negotiated with Brussels, and called for another referendum. The UK's interests "will be repeatedly and perma-

nently hammered by the EU27 for many years to come", Mr Gyimah said in a Facebook post setting out his reasons for resigning. However, prominent Brexiteer and cabinet minister Michael Gove has defended Mrs May's plan, writing in the Daily Mail that leaving the EU is under "great threat" if the deal is rejected by MPs. Meanwhile, Mrs May is in Argentina, where she met Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for talks on the fringes of the G20 summit on Saturday. He asked her to avoid a no-deal Brexit major Japanese companies such as Nissan and Honda are concerned about the possible impact on their supply chains across Europe. She told him she was confident Japanese businesses in the UK would continue to trade well with the EU. Galileo is the EU's

Suella Braverman

upcoming version of the US's GPS, which is used by millions of people around the world, and will be used by EU governments, citizens, military and industry. Brussels has said that, as a result of Brexit, the UK will not be allowed immediate access to part of the system intended for use by government agencies, the armed forces and emergency responders once it comes online in 2020. But the UK, which has invested €1.4bn (£1.24bn) in the project, says access is vital to its military and security interests. Ministers who have previously resigned over Brexit include: Dominic Raab, Brexit Secretary, Esther McVey, Work and Pensions Secretary, Jo Johnson, Transport Minister, Suella Braverman, Junior Brexit Minister and Shailesh Vara, Junior NI Minister.




8 - 14 December 2018

Neasden temple wins London Faith and Community Award

UK Swaminarayan Mandirs host events for the new British Deputy High Commissioner to Gujarat

(Standing) Rikin Kerai, Kanji Jesani, Geoff Wain, Suresh Rabadiya, Jethalal Savani, Kurji Kerai, Peter Cook, Bhimji Vekaria, Parbat, Dipak Valand, Bipin Gami(Front row) Mr Naran Bhudia, Bharat Pindoria, Mansukh Mayani, Vinod Bhudia, Ravjib Bhagat and others

Bhavna Parmar (centre) receiving the award from Sir Kenneth Olisa OBE, the Lord Lieutenant of Greater London

BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London (popularly known as the ‘Neasden Temple’) received an award from the London Faith & Community Awards in recognition of its commitment to the health and welfare of elderly community members through regular visits to residential care homes. The awards were organised by The Faith & Belief Forum – an organisation that exists to create good relations between people of different faiths and beliefs. The London Faith & Community Awards is a key initiative of the Forum which celebrates the vital work of local communities in making London a welcoming place for people of all faiths and beliefs. Volunteers from the Mandir were presented with the award under the ‘Health and Wellbeing’ category by the LordLieutenant of Greater

London (Sir Kenneth Olisa OBE) during the awards ceremony held on 27 November 2018 in London. The Mandir was also selected for the Judge’s Commendation Award in the category. Volunteers have been delivering tailored programmes for residents at local care homes since 2014. Residents have, in turn, shared valuable life experiences with the volunteers, many of whom are young and have found the experiences enriching. As part of this community engagement, volunteers have also organised excursions to local places of interest including visits to the Mandir. Kirit Wadia, a lead interfaith volunteer at the Mandir said: “We are extremely honoured and humbled to receive this award. The creator of the Neasden Temple, His Holiness Pramukh Swami

Maharaj used to teach: “In the joy of others lies our own.” It is the joy of serving others itself which gives us our greatest joy and satisfaction. We hope and pray that we all continue to serve others selflessly and humbly, bringing joy to others, thereby finding our own joy too.” Interfaith events are an integral component of the Mandir’s activities. An Interfaith Armistice Day Remembrance Ceremony was held at the Mandir in November 2018, and volunteers and worshippers from the Mandir joined community leaders and residents of various faiths to participate in a Peace Walk in September 2018. Children from the Mandir also participated at an interfaith music festival at The British Museum in March 2018. The Mandir regularly participates in the annual National Interfaith Initiative.

Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Bhuj together with 11 other Swaminarayan mandirs hosted an event on 27th November, to facilitate His Excellency Peter Cook, the new British Deputy High Commissioner to Gujarat and Rajasthan at Shree Kutch Swaminarayan Mandir, Kenton, Harrow. He was formally introduced to the various mandirs representatives by the outgoing High Commissioner His Excellency Mr Geoff Wain who leaves the position in Ahmadabad in January 2019. The event was organised by Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Bhuj on behalf Mahant Sadguru Purani Swami Dharmanandandasji, the Mahant Swami for Bhuj Swaminarayan Mandir. Participants included representatives from Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Oldham, Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Willesden, Shree Kutch Satsang Swaminarayan Temple (Mandir) Kenton London, Shree Swaminarayan Satsang – Stanmore, Shree Kutch Satsang Swaminarayan Temple – Woolwich, Shree Kutch Satsang Swaminarayan

Temple East London, Shree Swaminarayan Temple Cardiff, Shree Swaminarayan Temple Bolton. International Swaminarayan Satsang Organisations (Crawley), International Swaminarayan Satsang Organisations (Leicester), International Swaminarayan Satsang Organisations (Streatham) and International Swaminarayan Satsang Organisations (Brighton). The event was an opportunity for the community to personally thank the outgoing British Deputy High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr Geoff Wain for the assistance he has given in past few years to the UK mandirs and community; and to facilitate a formal introduction to the original Swaminarayan Sampraday to the new incoming British Deputy High Commissioner Mr Peter Cook. Jethalalbhai Savani said, “Geoff Wain had created such a positive impression and we really want to take the opportunity today to thank you for what you have done for the Swaminarayan Mandir and to say what a privilege it is for us to be able to thank your Government in such a special

way.” Other speakers also praised Geoff Wain’s service to the Gujarati community over the last four years and look forward to maintaining the same positive relationship and dialogue with the new Deputy British High Commissioner for Ahmedabad His Excellency Mr Peter Cook. Mr Cook said that he officially starts his position in January 2019 and has already received an invitation to visit Bhuj Swaminarayan Mandir. He confirmed that he plans to go to Bhuj Mandir at the earliest opportunity after taking over the position. He said that he has been brief by Geoff Wain and was greatly looking forward to visiting Bhuj and meeting Mahant Swami and other swamis at Bhuj Mandir. Both dignitaries Peter Cook and Geoff Wain personally thanked Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Bhuj for arranging the event. They then went on to praise and show gratitude to Shree Kutch Swaminarayan Mandir Kenton Harrow for their exquisite hospitality and for providing the delicious meal for the function.

Academic receives royal award for her contribution to Sikh community research An academic from University of Wolverhampton has formally received an MBE from His Royal Highness Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, at Buckingham Palace. Dr Opinderjit Kaur Takhar, Director of the recently launched Centre for Sikh and Panjabi Studies at the University and Senior Lecturer in Religious Studies in the Faculty of Arts, was awarded the Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the New Year Honours list. The New Year Honours list recognises the achievements of a wide range of extraordinary people across the UK. An MBE is an award given by the Queen to an individual for outstanding service to the community or local 'hands on' service. Dr Takhar, from Derby, undertakes a variety of research, specialising in subject matter that relates to the Sikh community as well as topics including caste and gender balance. She is well-known in the

region for her research work – especially in the Sikh community in and around the West Midlands. A Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, Dr Takhar is also an Editorial Board member for Journal for Religions of South Asia in Canada, on the editorial board of the Journal, Sikh Formations, she sits on the Steering Committee of Special Interest Group on Teaching Religions of South Asia and is a Board Member of the Inter faith Wolverhampton Network. Dr Takhar has presented her research in Universities across the world, she has produced textbooks and a Teacher’s guide for the OCR GCSE syllabus on Philosophy and Ethics, used in secondary schools across Britain and she has written numerous educational resources for RE Today Publications, a national resource for teaching Religious Education across schools and colleges in the UK. Her 2005 book on Sikh Identity is used as a key text in Universities across the

world. She is a regular participant on discussion programmes and panels on Sikh media channels. She has regularly contributed to the British Sikh Report, as well as the UK Sikh Survey, and is also one of the authors of the Sikh Manifesto, produced by the Sikh Network (UK) in preparation for the 2015 British Parliament elections. Dr Takhar said: “I am absolutely thrilled and humbled to have received such a prestigious award at Buckingham Palace. I am committed to bringing faith communities together whilst at the same time raising the profile of the Sikh community. “Working at the University of Opportunity, it is essential that we all make a valid contribution to promoting equality and diversity and I hope that my research is enriching the lives of our students as well as our communities.” Professor Geoff Layer, ViceChancellor at the University of

Wolverhampton, said: “On behalf of everyone at the University of Wolverhampton, I would like to congratulate Opinderjit on this prestigious and very well deserved honour. “Engaging tirelessly with local, regional, national and international community groups and governing bodies, Dr Takhar is consistently raising awareness of issues that affect the Sikh community in the UK and abroad. “The West Midlands has a large and well-established Sikh community as well as people from all faiths and none. Dr Takhar’s research, combined with her personal highprofile, is consistently having an impact on people’s lives by bringing communities together as well as helping to raise the profile of the University.” The University of Wolverhampton launched its new Centre for Sikh and Panjabi Studies earlier this year - the first of its kind in the UK - and is one of

Dr Opinderjit Kaur Takhar

the first Universities in the country to offer a Master’s Degree in Punjabi Studies. The Centre will offer PhDs and Master’s level courses in Sikh studies, as well as continuing professional development (CPD) courses for teachers and managers of diverse workforces such as national and local government, the NHS and the emergency services.







8 - 14 December 2018



Anish Bhuva:

Dr Nik Kotecha, centre, presents trophy to Innovation Award winners, HSG UK

MRImypacemaker Sunetra Senior

ly using the newer devices now designed to be safe in MRI machines, and following the stricter protocols that allow older devices to be scanned. “This is also cost-effective,” added Anish. “The early diagnosis that results from wider spread practice reduces the cost of medical intervention, hospital admission and downstream treatment. Additionally, having individual, local teams trained up also means the indiscriminate accessibility to MRI scans can help more people quickly.” Here, Anish elaborated on the technological side of MRImypacemaker. In terms of accessibility, a digital platform has complemented the biotechnological advances in medical equipment. “Our website has had a lot of traffic, and our information pages have greatly helped patients and physicians everywhere. People want to know more, and we’ve been able to put the relevant persons in touch with each other.”

The NHS has notoriously suffered budget cuts that have restricted quality patient care, and undermined the confidence of its staff. Anish, a cardiology registrar, has started a British [BA1] campaign, MRImypacemaker, which is expanding to other countries, to right at least one particular aspect of the professional healthcare landscape. The young Founder is raising awareness to ensure that those with pacemakers and other implantable electronic devices have “the same access to MRI scans as everyone else”. Historically, such scans have not been offered to those with implantable cardioverter-defibrillators as the “interaction between magnetic field and the metal device component has obviously been risky.” This means a significant number of the population, “nearly half a million people in the UK, or one in 50 over 65 years” who do have implantable *** electronic devices have not been able to Interestingly, Anish is concurrently enjoy easy access to vital medical examconducting research into 3D machine inations that help diagnose serious learning for his PhD, continuing to use inflictions such as cancer, strokes and technology to aid medical innovation: musculoskeletal disorders. An aging “I’m at the point in my medical studies population, a majority of whom are where I can focus on a specialist area of pacemaker users, are especially prone cardiology, and I’ve enjoyed dissolving to accruing diseases over time. the barriers between the world of comHowever, since 2008, MRI-conditional puter science, and cardiologists and devices which use less ferro-magnetic metal, alter lead insulation, and replace MRI-vulnerable component parts e.g. reed switches, have allowed scanning to be more straightforward and safer for those with pacemakers. “It was outrageous that options were available, but many of those with pacemakers were still being denied the appropriate care. It’s a question of more training in physiologists. I’m developing a delivering the service, dropping old machine learning app to better underpractices and spreading the word of stand how our hearts adapt to stress. new protocol with the technology.” Depending on your background, you Among other initiatives then, will be affected differently in the areas Anish’s mission with of heart pressure or diabetes etc. MRImypacemaker has been to “build Someone of a Caribbean background services through education and service will have different physiological design” which have now been shortlistresponses to someone of South Asian ed [BA2] for reputable awards in the ancestry. We take complex images by community: the 2018 Health service ultrasound and MRI procedures, but journal award for improving the don’t appreciate the depth of the value of diagnostic services, information these can give and the 2018 British us. Firstly, scanning Medical Journal Award patients with aortic It was for Diagnostics Team stenosis and then outrageous that of the Year. “I started marathon runners options were the project about exercising over a three years ago to period of six available, but many test the effectivemonths, I trained up were still being ness of the cama computer to build paign. We had to a 3D model of the denied the bring together the heart for better visuappropriate necessary professionals alization. If you can to train and gather expeidentify the disease earlicare rience such as cardiologists, er, you can give a clearer radiologists, radiographers and prognosis faster. I’ve enjoyed cardiac physiologists. We wanted to working across different professional ensure technical quality.” Starting off fields, combining my medical, techniregionally with small teams to great cal and even entrepreneurial passions.” success, Anish later began to receive This overlap was useful when Anish calls from locations abroad asking after was campaigning for more support training methods, equipment use and within the NHS and medical commugeneral advice: “we started getting calls nity for support for the from Ireland and then further abroad MRImypacemaker programme. He such as Singapore and Australia.” The used the positive patient feedback, team worked effectively with major facilitated by online portals, his prior developments, confidently and carefulexperience in finance and “the clinical

Anish Bhuva

experience from an MSC in cost-effectiveness and biotechnology,” to garner attention from higher ups such as the royal societies to obtain the essential funding and far-reaching national endorsement. “It’s been a gradual but rewarding journey. Any great breakthrough is methodical where you chip away at the problem to uncover meaningful solutions.” However, more than the multifarious academic aptitude, or indeed the online age, Anish passionately asserts that personal resolve has been central to his big campaign: “I’m interested [BA3] in app development and have an interest in AI etc. but for me, solving the real-world problem has been the biggest driver. I wanted to simplify a logistical problem and give people the access to medical care that they deserved. From useful flowcharts for clinicians worldwide to navigate to patients emailing their thanks, the human aspect is the focus. When we were pitching, the sincerity that came of this was always the biggest appeal too.” Thus, Anish embodies an age where individuals are driving the much-needed social changes, carrying as much impact as bigger bureaucratic structures: “another great part of the campaign has been informing national policy,” he aptly finished. “Effective policy, from diagnosis procedure to discharging patients, is necessary for sustaining the cause and will take it far.” And so, MRImypacemaker works to provide sincere, democratic care as part of a more cohesive, improved future. “For me, it’s not just about being a doctor day to day, but rethinking an entire system[BA4] .”

What grabs you about medicine? At the moment, I am doing less clinical work and I miss seeing patients first-hand. My favourite part of the discipline is talking to someone after the procedure and feeling that I’ve really helped them. It’s most satisfying. Interpersonal contact and the little changes you make are everything. What have been some highlight moments? Honestly, gaining traction over time through the team’s resilience. We’ve made some strong relationships with medical experts and medical bodies as well as our many patients. We’ve got to know them as people. The cumulative effort has been great. Finally, what advice would you give to others who wish to start a reformative social enterprise? If you’ve got a good idea, you must persist. You rarely see solutions to important problems overnight. Also, choose the right way to carry it: it might be traditional or it might mean thinking outside of the box. W:

Winners of the 2018 Midlands Family Business Awards were announced at a glittering black-tie ceremony at Leicester’s Athena last Thursday. Now in their ninth year, the not-for-profit are the region’s only independent initiative dedicated to celebrating and recognising the success, achievements and innovations of family run and owned businesses. Bright Side Vets was crowned Best Small Family Business 2018 – the first time a veterinary practice has picked

up an award in the MFBA’s nine years. This year’s ceremony was attended by over 300 guests, with forty-eight finalists. Event organiser, Wilsons’ MD Charlotte Perkins, said: “The talent, ambition and entrepreneurial spirit of our finalists and winners highlights the significant role that family businesses play in keeping the Midlands’ economy thriving.” For the full list of winners, visit:

16 UK





8 - 14 December 2018



8 - 14 December 2018

WE WON'T BE ERASED We are who we are: Like us or hate us but you can't deny us.

Where's the party tonight? “Safe spaces” for queer Asians

ture,” explained Ryan. Walk into a Hungama event, and you will almost instantly be transported to a Bollywood Set right from Lanji mixing desi music with EDM tracks to the very thematic filmy decorations. The Glory, (in Haggerston), where Ryan hosted his first ever event in the summer of 2017, was in fact decorated to look just like a temple full of marigolds with Jalebis and Samosas being served off the counter and wedding songs ricocheting off the bar walls.

Priyanka Mehta

Rays of neon pink and blue danced in my vision, soothing my nerves on a Thursday evening as the stench of Budweiser and cigarette butts smuggled into my senses at The Glory. Sympathetic nods and “yes” from the crowd soared and echoed in the dungeons as Rohit Dasgupta at the Queer Q&A panel discussion shared his anecdote“I remember this incident some years ago when I had gone to one of the clubs in SoHo and the bouncer outside told me “That you do understand this is a gay bar!” And he repeated this to me four times in a row. Almost as if the fact that “Gay” and “brown” couldn't be associated in the same sentence.” Rohit's words mushroomed into my head to the extent that my google search list was full of “Club nights for Queer Asians in the UK”. But my mainstream resources only told me about Hungama Bollywood nights. But club scene for Queer Asians in the UK goes above and beyond the infamous “SoHo gay village clubs”.

1. Club Kali - “Not Out” Club Kali was formally set up in 1995, inspired by Shakti, a gay disco night established by Shivananda Khan* out his setting up the Naz Foundation. Club Kali established itself as a “safe space” back in those days when being Asian and gay was simply not as acceptable, and particularly within the constraints and structures of Asian communities. “A lot of Asians were not out at that time. Most of these men visiting us were usually over 40-year-olds, married and living a double Pamphlets and leaflets at Club Kali

wary of media representatives attending their events either. Moreover, it extends as a community that offers a “listening ear to these people” wherein it offers a support system by providing support and signposting around many of the additional issues faced by this community. “If someone were diagnosed with HIV positive then they can't go to their local GP because someone always knew someone either in the community or the family and that can be risky for people who are not yet out,” said Sam. The main objective of this club is to ensure events at venues are gay-friendly, safe, and where possible accessible to disabled members as well. Above all, the events enable LGBTQ people to meet, make friends, reduce isolation, feel they belong to a community and instil people with the confidence that it is okay to be gay.

2. Club Zindagi: fighting discrimination

life where the Club gave them 5 hours of freedom without any judgment,” said Sam, a club associate. Club Kali's usual monthly club nights are now more diverse, and attracts members of the LGBT+ community across the board who shed their inhibitions and show off their Bhangra moves to the desi Bollywood beats. Most of these people happen to be members frequenting the club in the comfort of anonymity and feeling liberated from the constant stress of succumbing to familial expectations wherein they have to follow the burden of living a pressurized 'normal' heterosexual life with the women and family they are married into. This club follows a no photography policy as many of these members are not out and is

Kez Ansar started Club Zindagi in 2003 in Manchester primarily for LBGT+ members of the South Asian community. But today as it stands, the monthly club night attracts roughly 200-300 members from all diasporas with close to 80% of these members being Asian. The only kind of a “safe space” in Manchester typically for Asians, this club faces various challenges today from securing a venue within a competitive market to facing discrimination within the LGBT+ community. There is this common perception that a white gay club night is acceptable in comparison to “brown gay nights”. Adi, who is associated with Club Zindagi, recounts of a time when he approached a gay bar for hosting one of his monthly club nights and said“He [the owner of the gay bar] told me- “It wasn't the kind of night that I would want to host at my place”. And I understood that what he actually meant was that he wasn't comfortable with an Asian or BAME audience in other words,” Adi explained

p.m. - 6 a.m. in the morning and attracts about 1000 people on an average with people in the crowd ranging from 18-65 year-olds. “We work with Scala and together we ensure that the hired staff be it the security or at the bar is respectful of our members who are coming in and we are especially very careful with regards to gay offenses or homophobic attacks,” said Vandana*. Homosexuality at least in my view is no longer seen as a taboo as it was back in the time when I came out. But I have seen a change in the younger generation now but there is certainly a long way to go!” said Vanessa.

5. Saathi nights Running along similar lines of the above clubs is Saathi nights in Birmingham. The club recently celebrated its 14th birthday party in 2015.

Urban Desi under the umbrella of Urban World

Although the club does not exist as an outreach organisation, it addresses community issues of domestic violence or mental health by having a stand for Lesbian &Gay Foundation (LGF) at these club nights. The LGF have pamphlets and their volunteers provide appropriate guidance. “Whatever we make on the door is reinvested back in organising and hosting the next club night because of the niche market. And everybody on the team is working on a volunteer basis,” said Adi.

3. Hungama: Integration and acceptance

Fashion. Art. Expression. Liberation. East London's HUNGAMA club nights are perhaps synonymous to all such forms of love and acceptability. Curated by Ryan Lanji, the founder and producer of Hungama queer Bollywood hip-hop nights, these nights are open to anybody and everybody seeking a space for the celebration of their culture and music. “Even though the process may be slow...homosexuality needs to become more accepted in our South Asian society. The club night HUNGAMA with its Bollywood and dance floor full of positivity and acceptance facilitates the process of South Asian's in the gay community accepting themselves so they can integrate back into their family and cul-

“With Hungama I am trying to bring a whole new community of queer South Asians who have wanted to come to such places but haven't had the time or courage to experiment and I can support them in this process by hosting my nights at different venues regularly” said Ryan, “My aim is to have a united family of South Asians in the gay, lesbian and transgendered community so that we can speak up about who we are and teach our culture to be more accepting,” Lanji summarized his vision. But for each of these Hungama nights, the themes are different such that Ryan tries to bring facets of different South Asian culture and the creative arts of East London into the mix and give a liberating space for these members to loose their inhibitions and fall deeper in love with themselves and experience something they never imagined. “On our dance floor we can a 100% authentic whether it is creatively or sexually and liberated in the sense that nobody has to project themselves as anyone they aren't and can fulfil the potential of who they are and are destined to be.”

4. Urban Desi: Open door policy Urban Desi was established in 2008 and primarily located at Farringdon under the umbrella of Urban World until recently when they have started experimenting with the venues. From organising a bi-monthly club night to now hosting a monthly event, this club has an “open door policy” as they believe that integration with the mainstream is very important. Their club nights usually run from 10 Monthly club nights at Club Zindagi

Ryan Lanji’s Hungama - photography: Iolo Edwards

16 UK





8 - 14 December 2018



8 - 14 December 2018

WE WON'T BE ERASED We are who we are: Like us or hate us but you can't deny us.

Where's the party tonight? “Safe spaces” for queer Asians

ture,” explained Ryan. Walk into a Hungama event, and you will almost instantly be transported to a Bollywood Set right from Lanji mixing desi music with EDM tracks to the very thematic filmy decorations. The Glory, (in Haggerston), where Ryan hosted his first ever event in the summer of 2017, was in fact decorated to look just like a temple full of marigolds with Jalebis and Samosas being served off the counter and wedding songs ricocheting off the bar walls.

Priyanka Mehta

Rays of neon pink and blue danced in my vision, soothing my nerves on a Thursday evening as the stench of Budweiser and cigarette butts smuggled into my senses at The Glory. Sympathetic nods and “yes” from the crowd soared and echoed in the dungeons as Rohit Dasgupta at the Queer Q&A panel discussion shared his anecdote“I remember this incident some years ago when I had gone to one of the clubs in SoHo and the bouncer outside told me “That you do understand this is a gay bar!” And he repeated this to me four times in a row. Almost as if the fact that “Gay” and “brown” couldn't be associated in the same sentence.” Rohit's words mushroomed into my head to the extent that my google search list was full of “Club nights for Queer Asians in the UK”. But my mainstream resources only told me about Hungama Bollywood nights. But club scene for Queer Asians in the UK goes above and beyond the infamous “SoHo gay village clubs”.

1. Club Kali - “Not Out” Club Kali was formally set up in 1995, inspired by Shakti, a gay disco night established by Shivananda Khan* out his setting up the Naz Foundation. Club Kali established itself as a “safe space” back in those days when being Asian and gay was simply not as acceptable, and particularly within the constraints and structures of Asian communities. “A lot of Asians were not out at that time. Most of these men visiting us were usually over 40-year-olds, married and living a double Pamphlets and leaflets at Club Kali

wary of media representatives attending their events either. Moreover, it extends as a community that offers a “listening ear to these people” wherein it offers a support system by providing support and signposting around many of the additional issues faced by this community. “If someone were diagnosed with HIV positive then they can't go to their local GP because someone always knew someone either in the community or the family and that can be risky for people who are not yet out,” said Sam. The main objective of this club is to ensure events at venues are gay-friendly, safe, and where possible accessible to disabled members as well. Above all, the events enable LGBTQ people to meet, make friends, reduce isolation, feel they belong to a community and instil people with the confidence that it is okay to be gay.

2. Club Zindagi: fighting discrimination

life where the Club gave them 5 hours of freedom without any judgment,” said Sam, a club associate. Club Kali's usual monthly club nights are now more diverse, and attracts members of the LGBT+ community across the board who shed their inhibitions and show off their Bhangra moves to the desi Bollywood beats. Most of these people happen to be members frequenting the club in the comfort of anonymity and feeling liberated from the constant stress of succumbing to familial expectations wherein they have to follow the burden of living a pressurized 'normal' heterosexual life with the women and family they are married into. This club follows a no photography policy as many of these members are not out and is

Kez Ansar started Club Zindagi in 2003 in Manchester primarily for LBGT+ members of the South Asian community. But today as it stands, the monthly club night attracts roughly 200-300 members from all diasporas with close to 80% of these members being Asian. The only kind of a “safe space” in Manchester typically for Asians, this club faces various challenges today from securing a venue within a competitive market to facing discrimination within the LGBT+ community. There is this common perception that a white gay club night is acceptable in comparison to “brown gay nights”. Adi, who is associated with Club Zindagi, recounts of a time when he approached a gay bar for hosting one of his monthly club nights and said“He [the owner of the gay bar] told me- “It wasn't the kind of night that I would want to host at my place”. And I understood that what he actually meant was that he wasn't comfortable with an Asian or BAME audience in other words,” Adi explained

p.m. - 6 a.m. in the morning and attracts about 1000 people on an average with people in the crowd ranging from 18-65 year-olds. “We work with Scala and together we ensure that the hired staff be it the security or at the bar is respectful of our members who are coming in and we are especially very careful with regards to gay offenses or homophobic attacks,” said Vandana*. Homosexuality at least in my view is no longer seen as a taboo as it was back in the time when I came out. But I have seen a change in the younger generation now but there is certainly a long way to go!” said Vanessa.

5. Saathi nights Running along similar lines of the above clubs is Saathi nights in Birmingham. The club recently celebrated its 14th birthday party in 2015.

Urban Desi under the umbrella of Urban World

Although the club does not exist as an outreach organisation, it addresses community issues of domestic violence or mental health by having a stand for Lesbian &Gay Foundation (LGF) at these club nights. The LGF have pamphlets and their volunteers provide appropriate guidance. “Whatever we make on the door is reinvested back in organising and hosting the next club night because of the niche market. And everybody on the team is working on a volunteer basis,” said Adi.

3. Hungama: Integration and acceptance

Fashion. Art. Expression. Liberation. East London's HUNGAMA club nights are perhaps synonymous to all such forms of love and acceptability. Curated by Ryan Lanji, the founder and producer of Hungama queer Bollywood hip-hop nights, these nights are open to anybody and everybody seeking a space for the celebration of their culture and music. “Even though the process may be slow...homosexuality needs to become more accepted in our South Asian society. The club night HUNGAMA with its Bollywood and dance floor full of positivity and acceptance facilitates the process of South Asian's in the gay community accepting themselves so they can integrate back into their family and cul-

“With Hungama I am trying to bring a whole new community of queer South Asians who have wanted to come to such places but haven't had the time or courage to experiment and I can support them in this process by hosting my nights at different venues regularly” said Ryan, “My aim is to have a united family of South Asians in the gay, lesbian and transgendered community so that we can speak up about who we are and teach our culture to be more accepting,” Lanji summarized his vision. But for each of these Hungama nights, the themes are different such that Ryan tries to bring facets of different South Asian culture and the creative arts of East London into the mix and give a liberating space for these members to loose their inhibitions and fall deeper in love with themselves and experience something they never imagined. “On our dance floor we can a 100% authentic whether it is creatively or sexually and liberated in the sense that nobody has to project themselves as anyone they aren't and can fulfil the potential of who they are and are destined to be.”

4. Urban Desi: Open door policy Urban Desi was established in 2008 and primarily located at Farringdon under the umbrella of Urban World until recently when they have started experimenting with the venues. From organising a bi-monthly club night to now hosting a monthly event, this club has an “open door policy” as they believe that integration with the mainstream is very important. Their club nights usually run from 10 Monthly club nights at Club Zindagi

Ryan Lanji’s Hungama - photography: Iolo Edwards




8 - 14 December 2018

Transitions & taboos

“coming out” is not as easy even in the Grindr age between emotional individualistic needs as opposed to family expectations.” “What we need to understand and differentiate between is sexual behavior and sexual fantasies.”

ishabh, an 18-year-old teenager travels across continents to pursue his under-graduation in the UK in 2014. In the process, he discovers that he is bisexual. Amidst the chaos of having to adapt to the cultural transitions, Rishabh is thrown into the daunting phase of accepting himself simultaneously, finding himself acceptable in his immediate society. 15 years after Section 28 is scrapped what are the challenges that today's youngsters face in explaining their identity and choices to conservative elements of the South Asian community in the UK?


Mental health and domestic violence

You will burn in hell “One of my expectations arriving here was that the UK would be a much more free society and more accepting of my queer identity,” Rishabh said. But in his first year at Sheffield University, Rishabh discovers the unpleasant truth after a series of homophobic and racist incidents. “Rishabh in this world you cannot be openly homophobic” and there was a time when one said that “you will burn in hell” Rishabh recalls of those days when he was sharing his apartment with his staunchly religious Catholic flatmates who were not comfortable with his identity. But Rishabh did not allow these incidents to pull him down and went onto become the Vice-Chair of the BAME society at his university. He engaged in organizing events to create more awareness about intersectionality and minority representation. And proceeds to become the chair of LGBT+ group not just at his university but also has an involvement with the NUS LGBT+ group as well. But in this journey of identifying and accepting that identity, there are multiple stress points that impact the mental, psychological, sexual and to some degree even the physical health of a person with people tipping to suicidal tendencies. “In Sheffield, I don't think there was an organization that was especially for counseling members of the LGBT+ community. The only counseling that we had at university was the general student counseling services which in my view was under-funded and over-stressed,” This process of acceptance becomes even more difficult when isolation comes from all ends be it the international community which one would expect to be more understanding and their own Asian community wherein, no one wants to understand the queer character.

their partnership is registered with the council. But while the family is aware of his sexual orientation, Samarth is still not completely out in the society. From society's perceptions to impact on his business relations where he works with Arabic men who he worries would not be as receptive of his identity, the reason for his “closeted” life vary including his concerns about his father. “I am still apprehensive about holding my partner's hand in public and yes it sometimes creates a problem in the sense that my partner feels that such exercises are important for bonding and integration. And I am slowly coming out!” Samarth confesses. But selective acknowledgment of sexual identities and orientations is not just restricted to Samarth's case but Vandana's life presented the bigger challenge of living a lie.

tion into her voice. Vandana went back into living with her family after the divorce and she is now in a relationship with her partner. The family is acceptable of her girlfriend and everything is as okay as it can be for the couple from integrating at family lunches to social events. But the family still don't discuss the subject. But why would these Asian families put these youngsters through these difficult phases when it is understood that this is not a choice for them?

Stigma, taboo and “the other” Dinesh Bhugra, CBE is the current president of the British Medical Association (BMA) council and is Emeritus Professor at Institute of Psychiatry at King's College London.

Out, not out and no ball Among the many South-Asians living a closeted life is Samarth* originally from India and who identifies himself as a gay. “My father has tried throwing all emotional blackmails and curveballs about getting me married to a woman and wanting children. It has reduced now but it hasn't gone away completely. But I have stopped letting it affect me,” Samarth said matterof-factly. His roller-coaster life includes exceptionally supportive women of the family and a father who is aware of his identity but is selectively in denial about it. “I realized at a very early stage in my life that there was no point in getting married to a woman, spoiling her life by going around her back and having a relationship with someone else and ruining my mental peace as well in the process,” Samarth explained speaking about his partner in the UK. He is now married to his boyfriend and

“Living a lie: double lives” Vandana* is a 37-year-old woman who came out to her family when she was 18. Born and brought up in the UK she thought, the drill would be easier for her. And while that had been the case, back in the day everything was “hush-hush” to the extent that the subject was brushed under the carpet. “They understood me and my sexual orientation but they didn't want me to live that life, so I led a double-life for a long time!” Vandana recollects. Taking the course of a marriage of convenience, Vandana married a gay such that each knew about other's sexual preference. “It was supposed to be a brother-sister relationship. But one year into it, we realized it didn't work out for us and we got divorced!” there is almost a note of resigna-

“There is the element of the stigma and of being the other. Particularly among the migrant families who do not want to stand out and just want to be assimilated. Especially if you are living in geographical areas with Indian families around then the situation becomes even more problematic.” professor Bhugra explains. Anni Dewani's murder case wherein Shrien Dewani was accused of being involved in her murder following the revelation that he was gay is perhaps, the most infamous example of pressures over forced marriages and conforming to a template life. “I don't want to specifically comment on any individual case. But, yes there are quite often pressures from families where people do get married. But, the challenge is living a lie and that adds to emotional distress. It is difficult trying to find the balance

“One needs to get the balance right. There are specific cultural issues related to the Asian society and quite often if you are gay and you have a psychiatric disorder then it puts you into what is described as “double jeopardy” and so there is a need for a safe space whether it is provided by the NHS or by a charity. In light of such pressing circumstances, what should be observed is the tremendous cut to LGBT+ services whether in the form of closure of mental health service Pace in 2016, or the shut-down of the UK’s only LGBT+ domestic violence helpline, Broken Rainbow. Austerity has been particularly harsh on queer people of colour who face vulnerable situations, especially if they are migrants or seeking benefits. “The tragedy is that the NHS keeps cutting off its funding and there are not enough services providing to the cultural specific conditions for the Asian community as a whole much less for the LGBT+ within the community,” Professor explains. But mental health and isolation is not the only problem stemming in the community. Greater Manchester police in April 2018, have recorded 775 cases of domestic abuse in the LGBT community. This number only comprises of cases reported only in the city of Manchester alone and the number is potentially expected to be greater in the whole of the UK. “Domestic violence, on the whole, is not talked about. You can't see it in isolation and must be seen in the context of gender and alcohol consumption as well which may contribute further to the increased rates of domestic violence.” During his time at the World Psychiatric Association, he pushed for policy improvements to guard the mental health of minority, excluded and vulnerable groups across the world. This work included support for LGBT+ people alongside migrants, asylum seekers, the elderly and those with learning disabilities. The Professor has constantly stated that there is substantial research to indicate that conversion therapy is not a solution. For decades, in an attempt to "cure" homosexuality, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and chemical castration were administered. “Conversion therapy does not work in any case and LGBT+ individuals have high rates of psychiatric illnesses and some suicidal ideas and we also have clear evidence that these rates go down with the introduction of equality laws. The NHS has got a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with various organizations stating absolutely clearly that conversion therapy is absolutely unacceptable and no professional should be doing this!” There may be increased awareness among the younger generation in the UK. Some initiatives by organizations such as the Naz Foundation might have helped in bridging the gap between the conservative elements of the society and the youth who is trying to explain their identities and orientations. But cases of Shrien Dewani and the on-going trial of Mitesh Patel are indicative of the “stigma” that is still associated to the “LGBT+” community and why coming out even in the Grindr age today is not an easy task.



Christmas is a time when the property market comes to a rest. There is a lag period when both the rental and sales market stagnate.

People go into a different zone. There are multiple invites to Christmas parties. This is when deals slow down, valuers, solicitors and mortgage brokers start to wind down, all affecting how quickly you can get a deal through. Suresh Vagjiani

Sow & Reap London Property Investment

In this backdrop, auctions are a good platform to pick up deals from. The closer to Christmas the better your chances to pick up a deal.

Our angle was, we had exchanged on the properties but not completed. The completion was set six months away or earlier at our discretion.

A few years ago, we found ourselves on the wrong side of the auction room in such an environment. This was during the Olympic Games in 2012, which was also compounded by the Queen’s Jubilee. The population was busy feasting and drinking. There was only a skeleton attendance in the auction rooms.

Therefore, the aim was a quick in and out, without even so much as a clean up. Both were great deals, as evidenced by the eventual sale price. We did not foresee the effect of the Olympics having on the auction room. When people drink and watch games, they are

Lots had to be sold, but the public wasn’t coming in.


The excessive use of the horn and the unexpected sound startled and annoyed me. As my state of mind shifted I became aware that my mood had changed and I was no longer absorbed in positive thoughts.

Urban living is often stressful and, without realising it, we can catch a mood from someone else. After a couple of minutes, it occurred to me that I was “reacting” inside of me to the “actions” of the aggressive driver. This prompted me to contemplate the word “react”. This literally means to “re-act”. In other words, when we react we repeat the actions of another. Externally, we may do


Bullseye investment! London, SE2 Purchase Price: £320,000 Specialists in Central London Property Sourcing

Auctions are used by sellers who want the security of a sale. An offer, and putting it in the hands of lawyers, is not the same. You could do this multiple times and still not have the security of a confirmed sale. Instead, just a large legal bill. Auctions provide certainty. Hence, we put two lots in the auction. One large property in Shepherd’s Bush consisting of three flats, and the other a freehold building in Harlesden; both great deals for the buyer. We left plenty of meat on the bone for the incoming purchaser. We are considerate that way.

This is the environment in which the astute investor needs to be purchasing.

The other day I was walking to a meeting in Central London. I was absorbed in my own thoughts when, suddenly, I heard an aggressive noise being made by a nearby driver repeatedly sounding his horn.



something different to the person we are reacting to, however, we are responding aggressively to aggression or impatiently to impatience. We often recycle the behaviour of others. Most of the time this state of reaction is so automatic we do not stop thinking about it. We just react thinking we are acting.


8 - 14 December 2018

in no mood to focus on getting deals done, the next day the edge is gone. You will have a similar effect leading up to Christmas. For the shrewd sober investor, this is exactly the time to exploit the situation. There are auctions on the 12th, 13th and 17th of December 2018, by Auction House, Allsops, and Barnard Marcus being the last one of the year. These are all sizable auction houses, and therefore will have good stock to sell. The key is to ensure all the homework is done well in advance. This is a risk, as homework costs money, and you may need to kiss a few frogs before you get to something which stacks up. Therefore, it is essential all the commercial due diligence is done prior to having the solicitor check the legals, as his/her clock will be ticking. This time round, you have the Christmas effect compounded by the uncertainty caused by Brexit. A rare combination of events, and a perfect time to exploit the market. Do get in touch for further information.

think and examine your choices before doing anything. Once the choices have been set out then action can be considered within a broader context, without the compulsion to continually recycle another person’s energy. And, the secret of someone who has mastered this is that s/he appreciates that taking no action can, sometimes, be a powerful state of action.

However, to “act” means to

AGONY AGENT IS HERE TO HELP! Q: How do I protect my tenant’s deposit? A: A deposit is the money taken by the landlord to cover any damages or rent arrears that arise from the terms listed in the AST. This deposit should remain untouched for the duration of the tenancy. There are three main schemes available for you to use: the DPS, TDS and mydeposits. Each of these schemes offer practically the same service, but each has their own individual qualities suited to your needs and requirements. You must keep in mind that protecting the deposit is time sensitive, and must be done within the first 30 days of receiving the deposit. You will need to give the tenant the scheme's prescribed information that will be sent to you when you have protected the deposit. Be warned, if you do not protect the deposit you may be fined and will be unable to serve a Section 21 on your tenants. Some landlords have found themselves in this situation. Depending on which scheme you choose to use, you will need to provide certain information which will include details of anyone that paid towards the deposit. Fines for not protecting the deposit or providing the prescribed information within the 30 days of receipt will leave you liable to pay the tenant between 1 and 3 times the deposit, along with a court ordering you to return the deposit. Richard Bond

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8 - 14 December 2018

Alpesh Patel Dear Financial Voice Reader, How will we protect ourselves from Brexit? What’s to be done? In times of trouble, I like to turn to the world’s richest man – Warren Buffett the man behind Berkshire Hathaway. Berkshire paid about $4.4 billion in federal income tax on its 2006 earnings. In its last fiscal year the U.S. Government spent $2.6 trillion, or about $7 billion per day. Thus, for more than half of one day, Berkshire picked up the tab for all federal expenditures, ranging from Social Security and Medicare payments to the cost of our armed services. Had there been only 600 taxpayers like Berkshire, no one else in America would have needed to pay any federal income or payroll taxes. In the UK, Brexit or no Brexit, we need to focus on creating the giants, instead of only trying to eke out pennies from the minnows. You only need a few giants. “Our federal return last year, we should add, ran to 9,386 pages. To handle this filing, state and foreign tax returns, a myriad of SEC requirements, and all of the other matters involved in running Berkshire, we have gone all the way up to 19 employees at World Headquarters.” Said Buffett. Now some of you may be able to buy whole businesses as I am looking to do presently in order to expand. Here is Buffett’s advice to you: “BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY INC. ACQUISITION CRITERIA We are eager to hear from principals or their representatives about businesses that meet all of the following criteria: (1) Large purchases (at least $75 million of pre-tax earnings unless the business will fit into one of our existing units), (2) Demonstrated consistent earning power (future projections are of no interest to us, nor are “turnaround” situations), (3) Businesses earning good returns on equity while employing little or no debt, (4) Management in place (we can’t supply it), (5) Simple businesses (if there’s lots of technology, we won’t understand it), (6) An offering price (we don’t want to waste our time or that of the seller by talking, even preliminarily, about a transaction when price is unknown).” Put another way, spend you life looking for elephants. Said Buffett, “We continue, however, to need “elephants” in order for us to use Berkshire’s flood of incoming cash. Charlie and I must therefore ignore the pursuit of mice and focus our acquisition efforts on much bigger game. Our exemplar is the older man who crashed his grocery cart into that of a much younger fellow while both were shopping. The elderly man explained apologetically that he had lost track of his wife and was preoccupied searching for her. His new acquaintance said that by coincidence his wife had also wandered off and suggested that it might be more efficient if they jointly looked for the two women. Agreeing, the older man asked his new companion what his wife looked like. “She’s a gorgeous blonde,” the fellow answered, “with a body that would cause a bishop to go through a stained glass window, and she’s wearing tight white shorts. How about yours?” The senior citizen wasted no words: “Forget her, we’ll look for yours.” Alpesh Patel Her Majesty’s Government’s Dealmaker For a free online trading course visit

UK court allows Indian banks to pursue surplus money from Mallya yacht sale A consortium of Indian banks led by State Bank of India (SBI) has secured an order from a UK High Court as part of efforts to help them pursue some of the funds owed to them in unpaid debts by embattled businessman Vijay Mallya. In a ruling by Justice Phillips in the court's Business and Property division, last week, the banks were given permission to use certain information disclosed in court as part of a worldwide freezing order (WFO) against the 62-year old in an unrelated case involving the sale of a luxury super yacht which was previously owned by Mallya. The 95-metre vessel called 'Indian Empress' was “arrested” in Malta in March as maritime professionals union Nautilus made attempts to recover over $330,000 in unpaid wages and other costs on behalf of its members. The yacht was successfully auctioned to Sea Beauty Yachting Limited for 35 million euros in September and renamed 'NEOM'.

The ins and outs of overdrafts tomer has been approved for an overdraft, they can choose whether to accept it or not and set their own limit with the flexible in-app slider. Starling charge 15% EAR (variable) on what the customer actually uses, not on their maximum limit. EAR stands for the Equivalent Annual Rate - the interest customers would pay over a year if they remained overdrawn. It’s a useful way of comparing interest rates from different providers. Importantly, an EAR does not include the fees that some banks may charge in addition to interest. Starling does not charge any such additional fees and has a maximum monthly charge of £2 if a customer goes into an unar-

Most people need a little extra financial support from time to time. For many, overdrafts can be used as a shortterm cash flow for when their bank balance falls below zero. But this often lead to a series of uneasy questions: What’s my limit? When will I be charged? Where did that fee come from? Research from price comparison site uSwitch found that between 2016 and 2017, one in eight people in the UK had dipped into their unarranged overdraft, costing an average of £33 each time. The combined figure for unarranged overdraft fees is £300 million. Starling Bank offers fair and easy to use overdrafts as part of its mobile-only personal accounts. Once a cus-

ranged overdraft. Some providers charge flat fees which may seem simpler but are not always cheaper. For example, overdrafts with a 50p per day charge would mean that the customer would be charged £15.50 if they were overdrawn by £100 for 31 days. If a Starling customer is overdrawn £100 for 31 days, they will pay £1.27 in interest for this service. When someone applies for an account with Starling, the bank completes a few checks to determine if the customer is eligible for an overdraft and to set an approved limit. The customer can choose to accept this overdraft and can then decide on the amount up to

the limit determined by Starling. This puts the customer in control of their limit. Minimum overdrafts offered are £250 and maximum overdrafts are £5000. Further features of a mobile-only current account with Starling include realtime notifications, monthly breakdown of spend into categories such as groceries or travel and the ability to lock the MasterCard debit card if lost or stolen straight from the app. Find out more about Starling Bank at

Asian Business Association's Winter Reception The second annual Winter Reception by London Chamber of Commerce & Industry's Asian Business Association (ABA) was held at London's Bombay Brassarie on 29th November. It was attended by around 120 senior level executives, entrepreneurs and decision makers. The ABA was established in 1995 under the chairmanship of the late Lord Gulam Noon MBE and Subhash Thakrar - former Chairman LCCI, in recognition of the huge contribution Asian businesses make to London’s economy. Welcoming guests LCCI deputy chief executive Peter

Photos by Dan Corbett -

Consultant Editor Financial Voice

Tony Matharu (L), Chairman ABA and Peter Bishop, Dy Chief Executive LCCI (R) addressing members and guests

Bishop spoke of the strong connection between the iconic restaurant and the late and much-missed Lord Gulam Noon. Speaking at the event, hotelier, entrepreneur and philanthropist Tony

Matharu who is the chairman of ABA said that the current economic climate created by Brexit poses several challenges for businesses. He assured the audience that the LCCI and ABA would extend every support

to help overcome the challenges. The ABA is widely regarded as London's most important forum for Asian business and provides a voice for the London Asian business community.

Sanjeev Gupta buys US-based company at whopping $320 million Raising several eyebrows towards him, British industrialist Sanjeev Gupta's privately owned GFG Alliance has signed a deal to acquire US-based steel wire producer Keystone Consolidated Industries (KSI) for $320 million. Some investors have questioned the extent of Gupta's funds and his cashflow. The GFG Alliance, with assets spans industrials group Liberty House and energy assets across the world. The group bought steel plants in the Sanjeev Gupta Czech Republic, Romania, Macedonia, and Italy from top global steelmaker level of trade credit insurance cover it ArcelorMittal (MT.AS) in a deal that provides to some suppliers of GFG's doubled its worldwide steel-rolling Australian steel operation following capacity to 15 million tonnes. GFG also concerns about a lack of financial owns a US-based steelworks in transparency. Gupta's international Georgetown. metals, manufacturing and energy It has said its accounts show core conglomerate rescued Arrium, a earnings of $500 million in 2017, versus collapsed steel and mining business, last $165 million a year earlier. IT also said, year in a $700 million deal. In midthe KCI deal, which will take its total US November, QBE wrote to suppliers of steel-making capacity to 1.8 million Arrium, since renamed Liberty OneSteel, tonnes, is financed by an asset-backed warning that insurance cover was loan from two North American banks dependent on Gupta's business and a term loan from BlackRock providing full financial information on Financial Management Inc. the wider GFG group and parent Meanwhile, the group faces company. difficulties in Australia, as QBE, the QBE told suppliers it had repeatedly country's biggest insurers is slashing the requested information on the wider GFG

group, warning that if the information was not forthcoming it would withdraw cover on November 30. The insurance group has now told some suppliers that while it had met Gupta's team and GFG had provided additional information as requested, its Global Credit Committee has decided it is unable to continue providing full support beyond the November 30 deadline. A source in the know said the Australian giant was reducing cover but was in talks with its key customers “to find a solution without completely withdrawing” unilaterally. Another person said cover was being suspended for two weeks for smaller suppliers, but that it was intact for major suppliers. A Liberty House spokesperson said, “Our team in Australia has been in touch with QBE there and we have been assured that cover has not been withdrawn. We held one of our regular briefings for all the top underwriters in London and received very positive feedback from them.” They added, “People asked questions and got answers. Nobody left with any negative connotations.”





8 - 14 December 2018

in brief PANEL CLEARS STRATEGIC SALE OF AI’S GROUND HANDLING ARM A ministerial panel has cleared proposal for strategic sale of Air India's ground handling subsidiary Air India Air Transport Services (AIATSL), according to an official. The approval comes amid the government working on ways to revive the fortunes of Air India, estimated to have debt burden of over Rs 50,000 Crore, including sale of noncore assets. Proceeds from the sale would be used to pay-off a part of AI's mammothsized debt. The official said the sale would be carried out after transferring AIATSL to an SPV, which has been incorporated. The EoI document would be issued after transfer of AIATSL to the SPV. In 2016-17, AIATSL raked in a profit of Rs 61.6 Crore. AIATSL was incorporated in 2003 to carry out the business of providing all types of services at airports.

IFC INVESTS A RECORD $2.6 BN IN INDIA IN FY18 The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has invested a record $2.6 billion in India in 2017-18. In a release, the arm of the World Bank said, “IFC invested a record $2.6 billion in India in FY2018- a rise of 136 per cent over the figure two years ago, in the key priority areas of infrastructure, logistics, inclusion, and sustainability.” The investments are all long-term, made over 40 engagements with partners ranging from new-age startups, like Coverfox and Bizongo, to established names such as Mahindra & Mahindra and HDFC.


Companies under businessman Anil Ambani have launched 26 lawsuits against politicians, journalists and news organisations. On of Asia's wealthiest tycoons, his group has faced steady criticism from opposition politicians and the media over India's purchase of Rafale fighter jets from France's Dassault. Many of the lawsuits, all filed in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, relate to coverage of the fighter jet deal. The suits include a defamation claim seeking $1.4 billion against mainstream media agency, NDTV. In response, it has called the move “an unsophisticated warning to the media to stop doing its job.” Other lawsuits relate to reports on the financial position of Ambani's businesses, particularly the troubled telecom group Reliance Communications. RCom had last December, agreed to sell most of its core telecom assets to rival Jio, owned by Ambani's elder brother Mukesh. RCom currently claims $1.1 billion in damages from the Financial Times over a report on the deal. It has also filed three lawsuits against Bloomberg News and several of its employees. Ahmedabad is a popular venue for defamation cases. Its courts cap fees at about $1,000, regardless of the amounts being claimed.

IT report waved red flags 8 months before Nirav Modi scam broke out A crucial Income Tax investigation report that was not shared with any other agency, bogus purchases, huge over-valuation of stocks, suspicious payments to relatives, dubious loans, and more were red-flagged over eight months before the Nirav ModiPNB scam came to light. The Income Tax probe report on fugitive diamond jewellers Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi, running into approximately 10,000 pages, was finalised by the agency on June 8, 2017. The report was apparently not shared with other agencies like the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO), Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Enforcement Directorate (ED), and the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) until February 2018, when the Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam came out. Sources also said the tax department also did not share its findings through the Regional Economic Intelligence Council (REIC), a mechanism for sharing of information between various law enforcement agencies. On January 14, 2017, the Income Tax Department searched Modi's firms and surveyed companies owned by his maternal uncle Choksi. The search and survey covered at least 45 residential and commercial premises across the country. A senior tax official said the tax investigation appraisal report on Modi and Choksi was not shared with other agencies because there

Nirav Modi

was “no protocol” for sharing such reports with other agencies at that time. “After the Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi scam, since July-August 2018, the tax department has been asked to share all investigation appraisal reports with the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), which in turn shares these with other agencies for investigation and appropriate action,” the tax official said. He added “Since JulyAugust, we are sharing information and investigation reports on real time basis.” The findings have now been mentioned by the CBI and ED in their chargesheets filed against Modi and Choksi between May and July 2018.

Key findings of the June 2017 report include: • Modi's Firestar International Pvt Ltd received Rs 284.14 Crore from Cyprus-based Jade Bridge Holdings Pvt Ltd and Mauritius firm Forcom Worldwide Investment Ltd in financial year 2013-14. The IT report said that the documents claimed to be submitted by Jade Bridge and Forcom were prepared at Nirav Modi’s office in India. • Physical stock lying at Modi’s firms in the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Surat were hugely over-valued. • Modi’s firms gave “huge amount of interest free loans and advances to group firms” when the concerns giving loans and advances had themselves taken “huge bank loans”. • The top two creditors of Choksi-owned Gitanjali Group; Iris Mercantile and Premier Intertrade, were a part of Gitanjali Group till financial year 2014-15. Subsequently, the partnership composition of these firms changed and new partners were brought on board. The IT found that the firms did not exist at their registered address. • The Nirav Modi Group and Gitanjali Group made “bogus purchases” of Rs 344.4 crore and Rs 2021 crore respectively from three accommodation entry firms in Mumbai. • The group did not report international transactions of Rs 515.87 Crore entered with its associates.

Adani to fully fund its troubled Australia coal project Marred by protests over environmental concerns and legal and regulatory hurdles, energy giant Adani Group has announced it will self-finance the scaled-down version of the Carmichael mine in the coal-rich Galielee Basin of Australia. It will be entirely financed through the billionaire Gautam Adani-led Adani Group's resources, Adani Mining CEO Lucas Dow said in Central Queensland. He said construction and operation of the mine will now begin. In a media statement issued by the group, Dow said, “Our work in recent months has culminated in Adani Group's approval of the revised project plan that de-risks the initial stage of the Carmichael mine and rail project by adopting a narrow gauge rail solution combined with a reduced ramp up volume for the mine.” The company said sharpening of the mine plan has kept operating costs to a minimum and ensures the project remains within the first quartile of the global cost curve. All coal produced in the initial rampup phase will be consumed by the Adani Group's captive requirements. The coal mine was initially projected to produce 60 million tonnes per annum (mtpa)

Gautam Adani

with initial production og 40 mtpa every year but the company will now scale down the operations. Dow said, “We will now begin developing a smaller open cut mine comparable to many other Queensland coal mines and will ramp up production over time to 27.5 mtpa.” Once touted to be the world's biggest coal mines, the Carmichael coal mine project was announced in 2010 with an estimated cost of $16.5 billion. It was immediately hit by protests and court cases from environmental

activists claiming the project would increase carbon pollution and cause irreparable damage to the Great Barrier Reef marine park in northern Queensland. A company representative said, “The capital requirement has reduced significantly. The previous figure included a longer rail ine, a larger mine, sustaining capital over mine life and a major port expansion. We are not providing a figure for the new delivery model but industry experts have estimated the capital requirement for the initial construction and ramp up of the mine and rail will be around AUD $2 billion.” Adani has already invested $3.3 billion in the project which has been delayed by at least four years. Consequently, Australian banks have come under pressure to review their lending to fossil fuel developments, with Westpac Banking Corp. in April last year ruling out involvement in Carmichael. “The project stacks up both environmentally and financially,” Dow said. “We will now deliver the jobs and business opportunities we have promised for North Queensland and Central Queensland, all without requiring a cent of Australian taxpayer dollars.”

Jury gives TCS clean chit in racism case A US jury has ruled in favour of Tata Consultancy Services, clearing the company of discriminating against local Americans, a ruling that could help other Indian IT companies facing similar lawsuits. The first discrimination suit against an Indian IT player to reach a jury, the case would have had knock-on effects on the sector in case of an adverse result. The nine-member jury after a day of deliberations, came to a unanimous decision that TCS did not have a “pattern or practice” of discriminating against non-South Asian workers as a result of their race or national origin. Kotchen & Low, the law firm that sued TCS, argued that the Indian company fired 78 pr cent of its local workers benched between

2011 and 2014, while only 22 per cent of benched South Asians were fired, even though they constituted half the company's workforce in the country. In response, TCS lawyers pointed out the company's increased local hiring and the increment of its retention rate of employees. TCS is just on of the dozen of Indian IT companies that is fighting against Kotchen & Low. The American law firm has also sued Infosys, Wipro, Cognizant, HCL Technologies and Tech Mahindra. In its argument showed its job requirements were spread across the country and that non-South Asians who were fired were unwilling to relocate to open roles in other parts of the US. Girish Pai, analyst with brokerage Nirmal Bang said, “TCS' reason

was that locals were not necessarily mobile, which seemed genuine. I do not see why this would not hold true in other cases, if the companies followed the same reasoning and their actions were reasonable.” Analysts said the “mobility” requirement appeared to find favour with the jury, and could be used by other IT companies to fight their cases. TCS' HR head Ajoy Mukherjee told employees the jury verdict vindicated TCS against discrimination claims. “Skilled American workers are critical to the success of the US business and to the nation's economic success and we will continue to invest heavily in the country's workforce, academic alliances and our extensive youth STEM education initiatives.”




8 - 14 December 2018

Prosecutors say graft charges against Guptas to be dropped PRETORIA: South African prosecutors have said they would withdraw corruption charges against South Africa's infamous Indian expatriate businessmen, the Gupta brothers in the Estina dairy farm project scam in Free State province. The country's National Prosecuting Authority has alleged that $20 million meant for poor dairy farmers in Free State was supplied to the Guptas and their associates. Eight persons were accused in the case, including the high-profile brothers Ajay, Atul, and Rajesh, one of Atul, Rajesh and Ajay Gupta their relative, the dairy director, and said National Prosecuting Authority three government officials. It is reported that spokesperson Phaladi Shuping. He said the the prosecutors are now withdrawing the agency has not received any response to the charges due to lack of cooperation from mutual legal assistance requests made to Indian officials. India and the United Arab Emirates. The “The investigators were working with Free State government had granted a lease to Indian officials to gather information. The a company known as Estina to establish the process has been slow, so information is not Verde dairy project via public-private forthcoming as quickly as we had hoped,” partnership, in 2012. The company was

allegedly linked to the Guptas- a powerful family in South Africa with links to former president Jacob Zuma. On January 19, the High Court in Bloemfontein allowed the project's assets and bank accounts worth Rs 30 million to be frozen after prosecutors submitted their case. Then in March, the SA government claimed the Bank of Baroda's local unit possessed “proceeds of crime” linked to the project. The Indian lender is also accused of transferring public funds meant for the state-owned farm to the Guptas. This isn't the first time the brothers have been accused of influencing government business and appointments. The crackdown on the dairy farm came after Cyril Ramaphosa replaced Zuma as the leader of the ruling party in December 2017. Zuma quit his office in February amid corruption allegations, and was replaced by Ramaphosa.

Unpaid staff in Ethiopia hold 5 Indian employees hostage; 2 released ADDIS ABABA: The Indian Ministry of External Affairs is investigating reports of detention of seven Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services (IL&FS) as seven Indian employees of the beleaguered company were reportedly detained by unpaid local staff in Ethiopia. However, two of them have released on health grounds as per a source. The released Indian men had sent an e-mail from captivity to the Indian Embassy on their medical condition, adding that the embassy helped in securing their release. Harish Bandi was suffering from gastric issues and swelling in one of his fingers, while Bhaskar Reddy was down with severe fever. The five other employees of ITNL are being held captive are; Four staffersSukhvinder Singh, Bishnu Nagaraju, Chaitanya Hari and Khurram Imam, are under house arrest at one of the locations of Nekemte-Bure road project, while another Indian expat, Neeraj Raghuwanshi is been held hostage at a different location at the same project site. The source said, “A mail was written to the Indian Embassy in Ethiopia, which acted

promptly and with the help of local police the two employees were released.” Both of them were taken to a local hospital near the project site with the help of police authorities and from there to the capital city, where they are now recuperating. Meanwhile, the hostage five Indian employees are currently surviving on boiled rice, sweet potatoes, and vegetables grown in their camp area. The seven men have been held since November 25 at three sites in Ethiopia's Oromia and Amhara states by

unpaid local staff. IL&FS had defaulted on paying both taxes and local employee pensions for nine months. The locals have supposedly not been given salaries for October and November by a subsidiary of IL&FS Transportation Networks (ITNL). It is assumed that a possible termination of some road projects being built by Indian and Spanish joint ventures may have triggered local employees to take the step. The hostage persons had earlier attempted to escape, but it was thwarted by locals who believe they would not get their dues if the employees leave. The source added that the Indian employees working in Ethiopia have not received salaries from July 2018 either. The troubled IL&FS released a statement over the weekend, saying the two released employees of ITNL could be rescued through collective and sustained engagement with various authorities. The company has been under persistent stress after reports of defaulting on USD 12.6 billion in debt which rocked the Indian stock market, causing a huge funds outflow from NBFC sector.

Bangladesh Opposition leader Khaleda Zia can't contest polls DHAKA: Former prime minister Khaleda Zia has been deemed ineligible to contest the December 30 national elections according to a recent announcement made by the Bangladesh government. Last week, Attorney General Mahbubey Alam said as per recent Supreme Court ruling, anyone convicted and sentenced to two years or more in jail is not eligible to contest the elections. The three-time PM has served two full terms and once for a brief period. The 73 year old is serving a 10 year sentence for corruption charges since February. In October, she was sentenced to seven years after been proven guilty in Khaleda Zia two graft cases involving charities named parliamentary seats. However, the after her slain husband Ziaur Rahman. Zia is constitution of Bangladesh states, “A person facing more than 30 other charges, ranging shall be disqualified for election as, or for from corruption to sedition, which her party being, a member of parliament who has allege of politically influenced. Her party, the been, on conviction for a criminal offense Bangladesh Nationalist Party has called the involving moral turpitude, sentenced to accusations politically motivated. imprisonment for a term of not less than two Zia had filed nominations for three years, unless a period of five years has

elapsed since his release.” Besides Zia, the nomination of 15 high-profile candidates were also disqualified on different grounds, a spokesperson said. BNP leader Ruhul Kabir Rizvi has called his decision “ill-motivated”. He added, “The rejection of her nomination papers are part of the government's blueprint to keep her away from the election.” Bangladesh politics stands deeply divided, with rivals Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Zia, popularly referred to as "Battling Begums", ruling the country alternately since 1991, when democracy was restored in the Islamic nation. The national elections will be held under Hasina, who currently seeks a third consecutive time amid opposition accusations that she is becoming increasingly authoritarian and the opposition is being handled with an iron fist. Meanwhile, the country’s Law Minister has left it to the Election Commission to decide the eligibility of Zia to contest the polls.

in brief AUSTRALIAN PILOT FALLS ASLEEP IN COCKPIT, OVERFLIES DESTINATION An unidentified commercial pilot who was the only person on board of twin-propeller Piper PA-31 Navajo Chieftain is under scanner for falling asleep in the cockpit and overflying his Australian island destination by 29 miles. According to a statement released by his employer, Vortex Air, he was flying on autopilot during the early morning flight on November 8 from Devonport city on Tasmania 250 kilometers northwest to King Island in Bass Strait. He unintentionally fell asleep while in command of the aircraft. They added that, “The issue became apparent when air traffic control was unable to contact the pilot in-flight, and the aircraft traveled past the intended destination point while operating on autopilot”. The Australian Transport Safety Bureau, a crash and risk investigator, and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority, the aviation industry regulator, are investigating the incident and the company's handling of pilot exhaustion. The pilot landed safely on King Island.

NIGERIA’S MUHAMMADU BUHARI DENIES DYING AND BEING REPLACED BY LOOKALIKE Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has denied claims that he had died and been replaced by a Sudanese imposter. Finally addressing a rumour that has circulated on social media, Buhari, who spent five months in Britain last year being treated for an undisclosed illness, is running for re-election in February. “It's real me, I assure you. I will soon celebrate my 76th birthday and I will still go strong,” Buhari told Nigerians in a town hall session in Poland, where he was attending a conference. He added, “A lot of people hoped that I died during my ill heath,” and called those who spread the rumour “ignorant and irreligious”. A theory spread like wildfire by his opponents was that he has been replaced by a lookalike from Sudan called Jubril. While no evidence has been presented, videos making the claim have over thousands of views on YouTube and Facebook.

COURT RULES RAJAPAKSA CAN'T TAKE DECISIONS AS PM A Sri Lankan court has issued an order preventing Mahinda Rajapaksa from acting as prime minister and holding cabinet meetings. The island nation has been gripped in a political battle for over a month, ever since President Maithripala Sirisena replaced Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe with Mahinda Rajapaksa. Things took a dramatic turn last Friday, when Sri Lanka’s parliament voted to halt payment of ministers’ salaries and travel expenses. Friday’s motion, which passed 122 to none in the 225-member parliament, followed a similar vote on Thursday to cut the budget to the Prime Minister’s office. Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa, ministers boycotted the vote on the pretext that the motion was illegal.

NEPAL WANTS FRIENDLY TIES WITH NEIGHBOURS: KP SHARMA OLI Nepal Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has stated his country wants to develop friendly ties with its neighbours on the basis of “equality and justice”. The statement was made during the inauguration of the AsiaPacific Summit 2018, which was attended by regions in the Asia-Pacific, including India. Organised by the South Korea-based Universal Peace Federation in support with the Government of Nepal, saw leaders from India, Cambodia, Myanmar, Malaysia, Pakistan, and Philippines. Oli said climate change has proven to be a major threat to humanity and countries need to forge cooperation and collaboration to fight back.





8 - 14 December 2018


Google CEO Sundar Pichai will face a gruelling face-to-face with the House Judiciary Committee on December 5, during which he will answer questions from Republicans who have unproven beliefs that the search engine has a liberal bias. A report said the hearing promises to be a “long, wide-ranging review of Google's business practices at a perilous political moment for the tech giant.” The CEO could also be asked about the firm's plans to return to China and accusations of Google's search engine punishing Conservative results. Last week, Global engineers asked management to shut down the project, while Amnesty International plans to hold global protests in response. Pichai has agreed to give evidence after he and Google co-founder Larry Page declined to appear at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in September.

ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS IN THE US AT LOWEST SINCE 2004 According to a new report released last week, the number of immigrants in the US without legal status has declined to its lowest level in more than a decade. The nonpartisan Pew Research Center said a little more than 10 million immigrants lacked legal status in 2016, down from 11 million a year earlier and from a peak of 12.2 million in 2007 before the US economy slumped. The decline comes from a drop in the number of Mexican immigrants living in the US illegally to 5.5 million in 2016 from nearly 7 million in 2007. The report comes as the Trump administration cracks down on immigration and bolstered security on the Southwest border, where thousands of Central American families have arrived to seek asylum. It is based on US Census Bureau data. The report also noted an increase in the number of immigrants without legal status from India and Venezuela and a decrease in those from Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Korea, and Peru.

PAKISTAN CLERICS IN BLASPHEMY CASE FACE TREASON CHARGES Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry has said that Tehreek-e-Labbaik party chief Khadim Hussain Rizvi and two other leaders have been booked under treason and terrorism charges. Detained Islamic clerics who disrupted daily life with rallies across Pakistan following the acquittal of a Christian woman in a blasphemy case will face treason and terrorism charges. They were initially arrested under pre-emptive laws last week. Chaudhry said police arrested Rizvi's and more than 3000 of his supporters who held violent rallies following the October 31 acquittal of Asia Bibi by the Supreme Court. She had been on death row since 2010 on charges of insulting Islam's Prophet Muhammad.

AIR STRIKE KILLS TALIBAN COMMANDER A top commander of the Taliban has been killed in Afghanistan's southern province of Helmand, in a joint operation by Afghan and US Special Forces. Abdul Manan was killed along with 29 others by an air strike while he was meeting local commanders in Nawzad, said Helmand Governor Mohammad Yasin Khan. His death was confirmed by Taliban members in Helmand and neighbouring Kandahar province. A senior security official in Kabul said, “He was the most senior Taliban commander in the south and his death will have an overall impact on security.” The report of his death comes as both the Western-backed security forces and the Taliban have pushed to gain the momentum at the same time.

Kamala Harris, Tulsi Gabbard to live their American dream ? WASHINGTON: The first Indian-origin US Senator has said she will utilise the holiday season to consider whether she will run for presidency in 2020. The 54 year old said the ultimate decision will be a family decision. Speaking at a talk show on the weekend, in San Francisco, Harris said, “It will ultimately be a family decision and over the holiday I will make that decision with my family.” Harris ranked fifth in a November poll of Democratic voters' preferred nominee to take on President Donald Trump's reelection bid. Daughter of an Indian mother who migrated to the US in 1960, Harris was born in Oakland, California, and has a JamaicanAmerican father. Her mother Shyamala Gopalan studied science, specifically endocrinology and complex mechanisms of cancer, while her father Donald Harris became a national scholar in Jamaica and earned the opportunity to study economics in the US. Kamala herself, is extremely popular amongst the people and was often called the “female Obama” during Barack Obama's regime. She is considered as being close to the former president. Obama had even endorsed her in her various elections including that of the US Senate in 2016. Tulsi Gabbard pins her possibility of Presidential bid 2020 on Indian-Americans America's first Hindu lawmaker in the US Congress, Tulsi Gabbard is currently seeking views from eminent IndianAmericans on the possibility of a Hindu

Kamala Harris

running for American presidency. The 37 year old Democratic lawmaker from Hawaii said a formal announcement could be weeks away or even before the end of the year. If she decides to announce her candidature, she could be the first ever Hindu to be seeking presidential ticket from either of the two major American political parties. Over half a dozen eminent HinduAmericans wrote an email on Thursday to some of the top members of the community from across the country to share their “thoughts” with the lawmaker on “the possiblity of a Hindu running for the US Presidency” for the first time in history and the “impact” that could have on the HinduAmerican community. A copy of the email

Tulsi Gabbard

shows Gabbard, who was re-elected last month for her fourth consecutive term in the House of Representatives with a record margin, is expected to be in a listening mode. She expects community members to share thoughts with her on the possibility and chances of a Hindu woman running for American presidency. The community members are also expected to talk about the fund-raising potential of the community and what kind of logistics or voluntary support the community can provide to her in case she does decide to run. An Iraq war veteran, Gabbard has maintained a silence on the issue, but her team has been working hard and gathering as much support as possible.

U.S. proposes changes in H-1B application process WASHINGTON: In a worrying news for Indians, the Donald Trump government has proposed major changes in the H-1B application process, including a new rule requiring companies to electronically register their petitions in advance. The move is aimed at awarding the popular American work visa to the most skilled and highest paid foreign workers. The famous, and indemand H-1B visa is popular among Indians, who typically take up at least 60 per cent of it. It is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in speciality occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. Under the newly proposed merit-based rule, companies employing foreign workers on the visa would first have to electronically register with the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in a designated registration period. The H-1B has a numerical limit cap of 65,000 visas each

fiscal year, as mandated by the Congress. The first 20,000 petitions filed on behalf of beneficiaries with a US Master's degree or higher are exempt from the cap. Under the new rule, the USCIS would also reverse the order by which it selects H-1B petitions under the H-1B cap and the advanced degree exemption. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said the proposed rule will introduce a more meritorious selection of beneficiaries. It said public comments on the proposed rule may be submitted starting December 3.

“Currently, in years when the H-1B cap and the advanced degree exemption are both reached within the first five days that H-1B cap petitions may be filed, the advanced degree exemption is selected prior to the H1B cap. The proposed rule would reverse the selection order and count all registrations or petitions towards the number projected as needed to reach the H-1B cap first,” the DHS said. Once a sufficient number of registrations or petitions have been selected for the cap, the USCIS would select registrations or petitions towards the advanced degree exemption. It said, “This proposed change would increase the chances that beneficiaries with a master's or higher degree from a US institution of higher education would be selected under the H-1B cap and that H-1B visas would be awarded to the most-skilled and highest-paid beneficiaries.”

4 Indian-origin women in Forbes top female US tech moguls NEW YORK: Four Indian-origin women mentor other women in the tech have been listed by Forbes among industry, stay in touch with her 1.6 America’s top 50 female technology million Twitter followers and follow a moguls. The list includes the likes of nightly meditation routine.” She is also IBM CEO Ginni Rometty and Netflix on the boards of Microsoft and Spotify. executive Anne Aaron, all tech Mangtani currently serves on the heavyweights. The Indian-origin women board of non profit organisation Women in the list include, Padmasree Warrior, Who Code and led Uber's $1.2 billion former chief technology officer (CTO) of donation and partnership with Girls Cisco; Komal Mangtani, senior director Who Code to increase access to at app-cab aggregator Uber; Neha computer science. Narkhede had as a Narkhede, chief technology officer and software engineer at LinkedIn helped co-founder of streaming platform (From left) Padmasree Warrior, Komal Mangtani, Neha Narkhede develop Apache Kafka. “As the number of Confluent; and Kamakshi and Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan devices people use on a daily basis -Sivaramakrishnan, CEO and founder of computers, laptops and smartphones -technologists leading more than a dozen identity-management company Drawbrige. increase, advertisers need a way to show ads tech sectors across the globe.” About In its 'America's Top 50 Women in Tech to a person across all their devices. Facebook Warrior, who has served in executive 2018', Forbes said, “Women don't wait for and Google already offer these services to positions at both Motorola and Cisco, and is the future. The 2018 Inaugural Top 50 advertisers, but now they have a competitor now the US CEO of Chinese electricWomen in Technology list identifies three with Kamakshi Sivaramakrishnan’s autonomous-vehicle startup, NIO, Forbes generations of forward-thinking Drawbridge,” Forbes added. wrote, “ Warrior still finds the time to




8 - 14 December 2018

in brief


“Great wall of women” in Sabarimala to prevent “madness” THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala state government has announced a Woman Wall in Sabarimala on New Year's Day as the Bharatiya Janata Party sending a central team to the state. Finance Minister of Kerala, Thomas Isaac said, “Great Wall of Kerala, to prevent the state from sliding back into medieval madness, going to be raised by a million women from one end of Kerala to other on New Year Day. Come, join the Resistance. It will be very, very happy new year.” Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had announced a 600 km long Women Wall over the weekend, saying, “No one can push back the progressive society of Kerala into the dark ages.” He met with prominent caste-based and social organisations, including the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam and others in a bid to gather support following recent protests by right-wing organisations across Kerala over entry of women of all ages in the

Sabarimala Devotees

Sabarimala shrine. Addressing reporters after the meeting, Vijayan said, “As part of the combined efforts of all these organisations which took part in the meeting, a women's wall will be formed on January 1 from the northern district of Kasargode till Thiruvananthapuram, to show the country the secular and progressive

mindset of the state.” The CM has also sought support of “progressively-thinking” minds of the state to come out and pledge support to the cause in order to safeguard the “secular” fabric of Kerala. The meeting came on the eve of a four-member BJP delegation's visit to Sabarimala to meet people and workers and assess the “atrocities being committed against satyagrahis”. The delegation included BJP general secretary Saroj Pandey, national president of the party's Schedule Caste morcha Vinod Sonkar, members of Parliament Pralhad Joshi and Nalin Kumar Kateel. The ruling party released a statement saying, the team will submit its report within 15 days to the party chief. Kerala has been on a boil since the Supreme Court's verdict on September 28 allowing women of all ages into Sabarimala temple, in a reversal of its tradition of barring girls and women of menstruating age.


Pak army bringing Kashmir, Punj terrorists together: Capt Amarinder NEW DELHI: Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has accused the Pakistan army of helping Kashmiri terrorists move into his state and carrying out terror attacks in collaboration with local elements. Speaking in an interview with a media source, he said, “They are trying to bring Kashmiri terrorists and Punjabi terrorists together... It is not Imran Khan doing it, I am sure, it is his army. So, unless he keeps his army under control, we will have no option but to deal with them.” He cited the neighbouring country's role in terror attacks as the reason behind his rejection to arrive at the ground-breaking ceremony for the Kararpur Sahib corridor last week. Not holding back, Singh claimed Kashmiri and Punjabi terrorists were tying up for the first time under the Pakistan army's patronage, and students were being influenced too. He said, “We have about 6000 Kashmiris studying in our colleges, good boys and girls, and they are no trouble. But we have busted two terror modules in their midst, one with four people and another with two.” The

Cap. Amarinder Singh

CM said that while there have been logistical collaborations between terrorists from the two states in the past, this is the first time an “armed tie-up” has come to light. “We came across them in college, saw

them picj weapons, and followed them into their hostels, where we caught them with additional weapons and additional explosives. And this has happened twice. Now, this doesn't mean that all the 6000 youngsters who're studying here. They are very disciplined and everything is going fine there, but terror groups are trying to put people in and mix them up.” He added that it pains him to see students do such things when the Punjab government has welcomed them with open arms. “As I said, they are doing a good job. But four or five students among the 6000 studying here did this.” Singh said that he could not accept Pakistan's invite to the Kartarpur corridor foundation stone-laying ceremony in good conscience when terrorists from across the border continue to target civilians and security personnel in his state. He however, has no bad feelings for his minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, who made a very controversial statement with his presence at the corridor. “Sidhu is not sending contradictory signals, he is a friend of Imran Khan,” he said.


Coalgate scam: Former Coal Secretary H.C. Gupta convicted NEW DELHI: A Delhi court has convicted former coal secretary HC Gupta in a corruption case relating to allotment of coal blocks in West Bengal during the UPA regime at the Centre. Five others, including one retired and another serving public servant- KS Kropha and KC Samria, have been held guilty for various offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act and the Indian Penal Code. Gupta, who was coal secretary from December 31, 2005 to November 2008, has already been convicted before this in two other cases of coal block allocation in which he has been sentenced to jail for two and three years, respectively. Kropha, who was then Joint Secretary, Ministry of Coal, retired in December 2017 as the Chief Secretary of Meghalaya. He has also been convicted and sentenced to two years in another coal block allocation scam

former coal secretary HC Gupta

and has been on bail. Samria held the rank of Director in the Ministry of Coal back then and is now Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Minority Affairs. He has already been

convicted and sentenced to two years jail term in another case and has been out on bail. All those convicted were taken into the custody on the order of the court and were sent to judicial custody till December 3, when Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar will hear the arguments on sentence which entails a maximum punishment of seven years in jail. The case pertains to alleged irregularities in allocation of Moira and Madhujore (North and South) coal blocks in West Bengal to Vikash Metals and Power Limited (VMPL). All have been held guilty for the offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act and the IPC, including Sections 420 (cheating) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy). Prosecutors said Gupta has been accused in 12 cases of alleged irregularities in coal block allocation scam.


Deepa and Sreechithran

A raging controversy over plagiarism in Kerala has left two progressive cultural faces celebrated by the Left, sweating. Writer and college faculty Deepa Nisanth, also an activist and young orator Sreechithran, who recently hogged the limelight for his speeches at Leftsponsored events, favouring the entry of young women to Sabarimala. Both young leaders are currently stuck in a row for lifting a poem written by poet S Kalesh. At the crux of the controversy is a poem published under Deepa's name at a service magazine of All Kerala Private College Teachers Association. Kalesh has claimed that the lady copies his poem, which was published in his blog in 2011. He said the title of the poem in the blog was “anganeyirikke marichu poyi njan” (So When I Died). In response, Deepa has indicated that the poem published in the magazine was sent to her by Sreechithran.

PUNJAB TEACHERS' PROTEST: GOVT TO REVIEW PAY Teachers of the Sanjha Adhyapak Morcha have called off their 56-day old strike after Punjab Education Minister OP Soni gave an assurance to review their regularisation at a monthly salary of Rs 15,300. Soni said, “Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh will meet the teachers in th next 10 days. The financial condition of the state was not stable, so could not offer regularisation at the full scale.” He also assured that 5178 teachers awaiting full pay since November 2017 will get full pay-scale from January 2019. Over 8886 teachers recruited under RMSA, SSA, Adarsh, and Model school were on an indefinite strike since October 7 after the Punjab Cabinet decided on regularisation of services of these teachers at a monthly salary of Rs 15,300. he teachers were demanding that their pay (around Rs 42,000) be protected.

KOLKATA'S BIGGEST MALL ASKS WOMAN TO BREASTFEED AT HOME A young woman who was at Kolkata's famous South City Mall, was denied private space by storekeepers and security staff when she needed to breastfeed her daughter. In the feedback section of the mall's Facebook page, Abhilasha Das Adhikari recounted her ordeal, only to be surprised yet again with the page's reply. The social media page of the mall told her she should plan her baby's feeding arrangements properly and she should “do her home chores at home and not at a mall.” The post has gone viral since, triggering public outcry. In an attempt to control damage, the mall management even issued an “unconditional apology” which was met with so much anger that they had to remove the feedback option from its page. South City Mall vice-president Manmohan Bagri said the management was shocked at the reply posted by a young executive of the agency that was handling their social media.





8 - 14 December 2018

Sardar Patel: A Champion of Hindu-Muslim Unity • Instead of bigger one Jinnah had to swallow a truncated Pakistan • Vallabhbhai did explain the circumstances to accept the Partition months, agreed to by all the three parties. Show me any instance in the history of the British Parliament when such a Bill was passed in two months. But this was done. It gave birth to this Parliament.” (CAD Vol. X 10 October 1949). Rajmohan Gandhi, the biographer of Patel, presents the Sardar making up mind for conceding Pakistan almost Even today, the Congress is want a truncated Pakistan, but he in December 1946, much being abused from public had to swallow it. We said that before the Viceroy Lord platforms as one responsible for these two provinces should be Mountbatten announced the Partition without bothering to partitioned. I made a further the Partition Plan on 3 June The Trinity : Gandhi, Nehru and Sardar understand that the first Prime condition that in two months’ time 1947. Minister Nehru was not the only power should be transferred and Sardar Patel never Patel said: “I am true friend of the person responsible for Partition of an Act should be passed by needed certificate from anybody Muslims although I have been India and the abuses are targeting Parliament in that time, if it that he was a secular leader despite described as their greatest enemy. I Patel and the Mahatma as well. guaranteed that the British efforts by a section of people to believe in plain speaking. I do not The era of the towering Government would not interfere brand him a Hindu leader. Patel know how to mince matters. I personalities is gone and the want to tell them frankly that dwarfs have taken over. They mere declarations of loyalty to judge the towering personalities the Indian Union will not help of yester years with their own them at this critical juncture. yardsticks. Even during the They must give practical proof freedom struggle era, persons of their declarations. I ask them like Maulana Azad who was a why they do not unequivocally Congress President had denounce Pakistan for commented that, “(Mohammad attacking Indian territory with Ali) Jinnah may have raised the the connivance of Frontier flag of partition but now the tribesmen. Is it not their duty to real flag bearer was Patel”, in his condemn all acts of aggression autobiographical book “India against India?” Wins Freedom”. And yes, Patel There was so much hue and does accept the responsibility of cry on what Patel told the the partition under certain Muslims in Lucknow and the circumstances along with Mahatma had to defend him. It Nehru. Both had to concede did hurt the Sardar. In a January Pakistan. 1948 letter, Gandhi wrote to Patel disclosed ‘the inner Patel saying, "Many Muslim history’ in the Constituent friends had complained to me Assembly: “I give this inner of the Sardar's so-called antihistory which nobody knows. I Muslim attitude. I was able to agreed to Partition as a last Maulana Azad, Sardar Patel and Dr.Rajendra Prasad with the British dignitaries assure the critics that they were resort, when we had reached a wrong in isolating him from stage when we could have lost all. with the question of the Indian supported the Mahatma’s efforts Nehru and me, whom they We had five or six members in the States.” for the Hindu-Muslim unity gratuitously raise to the sky. The Government, equal to the Muslim “We said, ‘we will deal with throughout his life including the Sardar had a bluntness of speech League members. They had already that question; leave it to us; you Khilafat movement and resisting which sometimes unintentionally established themselves as members take no sides. Let paramountcy be India being made the theocratic hurt, though his heart was who had come to partition the dead; you do not directly or expansive enough to accommodate Next Column: country. At that stage we agreed to indirectly try to revive it in any all." Partition; we decided that manner. You do not interfere. We Palkhivala for only 30 % “The Sardar also believed that Partition could be agreed upon the shall settle our problem. The the Muslims should be given Reservation terms that the Punjab should be Princes are ours and we shall deal legitimate safeguards as they were partitioned- they wanted the with them.’ On these conditions State even after independence. He not foreigners in India…Patel whole of it- that Bengal should be we agreed to Partition and on considered “the Hindu Rashtra as a expected a change of outlook on partitioned- they wanted Calcutta those conditions the Bill in concept of madmen.” In his speech the part of the Muslim community. and whole of it. Mr. Jinnah did not Parliament was passed in two on 6 January 1948 at Lucknow, They should forget their past and


ne has to be extra cautious while dealing with the history of the towering personalities of Indian freedom struggle, especially that of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel (31 October 1875 - 15 December 1950). The present day politicians prefer “to pronounce” his life and quotes according to their convenience like a blind person describing an elephant. During his life time even the Sardar used to caution the Muslims about some of his opponents calling him “an enemy of the Muslims” where as he has always been “a true friend of Muslims”. None can dispute the fact that the trinity of the freedom movement i.e. Mahatma Gandhi, Pandit Nehru and Sardar Patel differed in their approach but all the three were unanimous on implementing the decisions to achieve their goal to gain freedom from the British.

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should involve themselves in the processes of nation-building,” writes Moin Shakir in “Vallabhbhai Patel : A Biography of his vision and ideas” edited by Verinder Grover. The Sardar was never apologetic about his decision of the Partition. In one of his public lectures on 11 August 1947, Patel said: “People say that Congress partitioned India. It is true. We have taken this responsibility after proper thinking and not because of any fear or pressure. I was strong opponent of partition of India. But when I sat in the Central Government I saw that from a peon to high officers are infested with communal hatred. In such conditions instead of fighting and tolerating the interference of the third party, it is better to separate.” Patel was the person who presented the unanimous report of the minorities in the Constituent Assembly. He said: “It is up to the majority community, by its generosity, to create a sense of confidence in the minorities, and so also it will be the duty of the minority community to forget the past and to reflect on what the country has suffered owing to the ‘sense of fairness’, which the foreign rulers thought was necessary to keep balance between community and community.” Patel was never shy of speaking out truth.

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8- 14 December 2018

AgustaWestland chopper scam: G20 Summit: Modi meets UN chief, Saudi Crown Prince Christian Michel extradited The alleged middleman in the AgustaWestland chopper deal, Christian Michel will be extradited from Dubai to India on Tuesday, as informed by his lawyer. The extradition will be conducted after a court in Dubai denied his plea last month. He would arrive in Delhi on a private flight, said lawyer Rosemary Patrizi. The 54 year old is wanted in a Rs 3600 Crore VVIP chopper deal that involves the purchase of 12 luxury helicopters for use by the President, Prime Minister an other VIPS, by the previous UPA government. Michel is one of the three middlemen being investigated, among Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa. The Enforcement Directorate in its chargesheet against him filed in June 2016, said he recived 30 million euros from AgustaWestland. It said the amount was a bribe for executing the 12helicopter deal in favour of the firm in “guise of” genuine transactions for performing multiple work contracts in the country.

Christian Michel

Back in 2007, the UPA government had signed a contract to purchase the luxury helicopters. However, the deal was scrapped six years later after allegations that AgustaWestland had paid kickbacks in India to secure the deal. AgustaWestland's parent company Finmeccanica earlier ran into allegations of bribe-giving in Italy. The Congress claims once corruption allegations were made, they ordered investigations, scrapped the deal and blacklisted the firm. However, the NDA has opened doors for them again and allowed them to participate in defence contracts.

ISRO To Launch GSAT-11 The Indian Space Research Organisation or ISRO is all set to launch the GSAT-11 satellite, or 'The Big Bird' as it is called. Weighing 5854 kg, it is the heaviest Indian-made equipment that the agency will attempt to put into its orbit on Wednesday. It will be launched from French space port of Kourou in South America in a second attempt after ISRO's first failed bid in May earlier this year. Dr K Sivan, ISRO chief said, “GSAT-11 is the next generation high throughput communication satellite that will play a vital role in providing broadband services across the country. It will also provide a platform to demonstrate new genera-

tion applications”. The Big Bird, which came at a cost of Rs 600 Crore, will be launched into space using the Ariane-5 heavyweight rocket hired from Arianespace by ISRO. The satellite is expected to have a life span of 15 years. It will help provide internet connectivity in flights. The GSAT-11 is equivalent to the combined power of almost all communications satellites sent into orbit by India. India hired the French Ariane-5 rocket as it can carry heavy payload into orbit. India's own Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mk III or GSLV Mk III can haul satellites that weighs upto 4 tons.

India will host the G20 Summit in 2022, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced during a meeting of G20 member nations in Buenos Aires, Argentina, over the weekend. He said, “ It’s India’s 75th Independence Day in 2022, and we had requested Italy if we can get ’22 instead of ’21 (for hosting G20 summit).They accepted our request, others accepted it too. I’m grateful and I invite leadership from across the world to come to India in 2022”. While Italy was supposed to host the global summit in 2022. After Italy agreed to let India host the summit in 2022, Modi thanked the European country for doing so. Addressing G20 member states, the Indian Prime Minister stressed on cooperation among G20 countries on issues related to global economy, trade tensions, crude oil prices and terrorism and fugitive economic offenders. India’s G20 sherpa has said, Shaktikanta Das said, “He highlighted the threat of increasing financial vulnerabilities, mainly arising from monetary policies of advanced economies and oil price volatility. The prime minister also emphasized on unsynchronized policies of advanced economies and the uneven pace of revival of economies of various countries.” He added that Modi stressed on escalating trade tensions and its resultant and collateral damages it caused to the least developed countries and other emerging economies. Modi stated that any instability in the crude oil prices put big pressure on the budgetary resources and domestic finances of the emerging economies. He also appealed for reforming the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and sought dialogue on trade and service in promoting global value chain in the agricultural sector.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman met on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Argentina

Speaking at the G20 summit, Modi also presented a nine-point action programme against fugitive economic offenders at the second session of the event. He said there was a need for a joint effort by member countries to form a mechanism that denies entry and safe havens to all fugitive economic offenders. India is curently pressing for the extradition of high-profile fugitive economic offenders including Nirav Modi, Mehul Choksi and Vijay Mallya among others. On the sidelines of the summit, Modi met UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, and the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud. He and Prince Salman discussed enhancing Saudi investment in technology, infrastructure, petroleum, renewable energy, food security, fintech and defenec sectors, an MEA spokesman said.

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Jai Shri Ram

Late Ratilal Umedbhai Patel (Sojitra) ç¾.ĴЪ º╙¯»Ц» ઉ¸щ±·Цઇ ´ªъ» (Âђ╙§ĦЦ) D.O.B: 24th September 1922 (Sojitra-Gujarat)

Demise: 30th November 2018 (Croydon-UK)

Contact : Shailesh Patel, Tel: 0208 406 9097;

It is with deep sorrow and regret that we announce the passing away of Ratilal Umedbhai Patel (UK-Sojitra). He will always be remembered as a loving, kind, generous giving man who has left a void in our lives but will always remain in our hearts. He was the beloved husband of the late Savitaben, Brother of late Shantibhai, late Vinubhai, late Vimlaben (Sister-in-law), Hasuben (Sister-in-law) and father of late Bharat (Bob) & Smita, Ramita & Pradipkumar (Kenya), Shailesh & Jyoti, Sunil, Rajesh & Alka (UK). Uncle of late Bhupendra & Pravina, Naresh & Nalini, Alkaben & Sunilkumar, Mukund & Kalpana, Jacka & Bindu, Purgent & Anjali. Adored Grandfather of Chirag & Nisha, Bhavin & Mona, Dharmesh & Lina, Dhravish & Shanita, Nirbhay & Alpa, Ritesh & Payal, Punit & Anjalee, Hemal & Reena, Niral & Kesha, Anish & Rupa, Kunaal & Prachi, Anooj, Rishi & Lydia, Karan, Poonam & Janak, Sonali & Nilesh, Shreya & Sachin, Mira & Ricky, Priya & Jay, Jigna & Hiren, Aarti & Timesh, Anoli & Ravi, Hiral and Kavita and loving Great Grandfather of Neel, Kian, Kunj, Kaylen, Aarnav, Arjun, Rian, Joshan, Shan, Aarin, Rishi, Aari, Kayden, Rishi, Sidharth, Shreyas, Janki, Tia, Roma, Shanaya, Kavi, Keysha, Tanisha, Amaari, Mia, Amaala, Raina, Shivani, Asha, Sonam, Suri, Mya Ratilal will also be missed by the rest of his family and friends. We wish to convey our sincere gratitude and express our thanks to all our relatives, friends and well wishers for their support and condolences. With the grace of almighty god may his soul rest in eternal peace. Om Shanti: Shanti: Shanti:

Mob: 07525 966 456





8 - 14 December 2018

Benefits And Easy Ways Of Staying Hydrated During Winter Winters are here and while we're all looking forward to the feasting and snuggling, it is important to take care of health as well. Like any other season, winter also demands special dietary and lifestyle adjustments to prepare the body for the cold weather. Staying hydrated may not look like an important thing to do during winters, as we don't lose a lot of sweat during cold weather. But as in summers, drinking enough water and retaining it in the body is important during winters as well. Staying hydrated may seem like an easy enough thing to do during winters, but it may not be so for a number of reasons. For one, dehydration is much less noticeable during winters, than it is during summers as you don't notice how much sweat you've lost under all those layers of clothing. For another, the dryness in the air may dehydrate our bodies quicker than we can imagine and most often we don't even feel thirsty, so our need for adequate water may remain unmet. The effects of dehydration may be subtle and hence, less noticeable during winters, but it's important to work pre-emptively to replenish the fluid reserves of the body, in order to avoid any physical discomfort in the future.

Here are some health benefits of drinking adequate water during winters: 1. Temperature Regulation: Water helps regulate the body temperature, during both summers and winters. Staying hydrated may be a sure shot way to stay warm internally and prevent conditions like hypothermia 2. Boosting Immunity: The cold and dry air may sap your body of energy, making you feel sluggish and even making you more susceptible to cold and flu. Stay hydrated to boost immunity and protect your body from illnesses. 3. Regulating Weight: When you're hydrated, your body is more capable of breaking down fats, effectively regulating body weight. 4. Boosting Skin Health: Drinking adequate water is one of the first things any beauty expert will suggest to you for skin health. During winters, it's essential to stay hydrated to prevent dry and dull skin. 5. Drink Warm/Room

Temperature Water: After exercising during winters or even generally, one should drink beverages or water which is at room temperature. This is because cold water/liquids get absorbed faster in the body. 6. Eat Fruits/Veggies With High Water Content: Eating a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables with high water content is also a great way to stay hydrated. Load up on strawberries, oranges, pineapple, lettuce, celery, tomatoes, carrots, spinach, cucumber, etc. 7. Limit Consumption of Alcohol/Caffeine: Although it's extremely tempting to indulge in hot teas, coffees and alcohol during winters, both alcohol and caffeine may dehydrate your body, so excessive consumption of both is not recommended. 8. Eat More Soups/Broths: Salty foods like soups and broths are healthy and may help in retaining water in the body. They also have the added advantage of warming you up from the inside.

The healthiest nations in the world The world's healthiest and unhealthiest countries have been revealed in a global league table. Singapore topped the charts of 149 countries followed by Luxembourg, while the bottom ten consisted solely of African nations. The UK, US and Australia did not feature in the top ten, according to the research by the Legatum Institute. Experts have today warned health improvements are starting to 'flatline' - despite advances in recent decades. The report, published today, judged countries on their healthcare systems, level of disease, obesity rates and other measures. The annual prosperity index breaks down the best and worst places to live around the world for nine categories in total. One category is health. Australia was the best performing of the major Western countries, ranking 12th, according to the research by the Londonbased education charity. It was then followed by New Zealand (17th) Canada (21st),

the UK (26th) and the US (35th). Japan featured in the top ten healthiest countries, as did Qatar, Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Switzerland, Austria, Sweden and Norway all also featured in the top ten. The quality of life of people globally is rising but the gaps between the best and worst is wider than ever, experts warn, showing huge inequalities in health, finance, politics, education and safety and security. On the entire index, the UK was rated the seventh most successful country in the world. But health is the country's achilles heel. The US also struggled to do well in the health category, which was its second worst performing area –

after safety and security in which it ranked 43rd. The Central African Republic fared worst, with Chad, Guinea, Madagascar, Benin, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Niger and Uganda in tow. The ranking was produced by measuring life and death-related factors like life expectancy, perceptions of health problems, vaccination rates, tuberculosis, obesity and diabetes. And it also took into account feelings of joy, sadness, and worry, people's satisfaction with their country's healthcare, and the quality of sanitation facilities. Big movers include Zimbabwe, which had the biggest increase in life expectancy, with it rising 15 years in the last decade. Laos, India and Tajikistan have had the best recent increase in the quality of their healthcare systems. On the negative side, people in eastern Europe are the least satisfied with their healthcare of anyone in the world.

NURSING A career option for South Asians Farina Saheed is a mental health nurse from Leeds. She said “I first thought about a career in nursing when I did a counselling course. I realised how much I enjoyed giving back and helping others so I decided to leave my job in banking to pursue nursing. “Asian families want their children to be doctors not a nurse. What people don’t understand is that nurses are the backbone of the NHS and we do a range of intellectually challenging work including performance of some medical procedures, clinical research and education and treatment plans for patients. are changing “Attitudes with increased understanding of nursing within South Asian communities Farina Saheed, a qualified nurse.

“I work with adults with mental health problems in hospital as well as in the community doing mental health reviews and helping patients develop coping skills. “Coming from an Asian background helps me in my role especially when working with older Asian patients. I can tailor the advice to meet their cultural needs. “I would definitely encourage young people to consider a career in nursing.”

Mariyha Iqbal qualified as a nurse 6 months ago and works at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. She said “I initially worked as a healthcare assistant on the respiratory ward at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital where I developed a real passion for nursing, so I decided to apply to university to study nursing. “I was offered a job where I did my second-year placement once I had completed my degree. “I had to battle with the stigma of being a nurse. My family were really against it, but now they have seen it through my eyes, realising that I am actually making a difference, saving lives so they are very supportive now.

“I love the diversity of my role, some days I feel like a pharmacist or a counsellor, other days I feel like someone’s brother or sister. “The beauty of nursing is that it keeps you mentally stimulated. You are consistently challenged and there is always something exciting

Mariyha Iqbal to do, whether its carrying out procedures, caring for patients or just putting a smile on someone’s face. You get to form close relationships with both patients and other staff members which gives nursing such a sense of community.” Nurses can specialise in a broad range of roles across all areas of the NHS, including: learning disabilities, mental health and primary care. If you’re interested in a career in nursing search nursing careers.

Babies' cold recovery 'all in the nose' Babies who are born with a wide variety of bacteria in their nose are more likely to recover quickly from their first cold, research suggests. It is hoped the findings may help in the fight against the common cold. The common cold is caused by a virus, but scientists want to understand how such illnesses are affected by natural bacteria in the respiratory tract. The study may also indicate why infants who suffer from lots of colds are more at risk of developing asthma later on. "The respiratory tract is home to a wide variety of bacteria and we are beginning to understand that the types and numbers of these bacteria - what we refer to as the microbiota - can influence our respiratory health," said Dr Roland P Neumann from University Children's Hospital, Basel. Researchers based their results on swabs taken from 167 babies. The swabs were taken as

soon as the infants developed the first signs of a cold - and then again three weeks later. Scientists analysed the swabs by testing for the presence of respiratory viruses, such as the common cold, and for the types and numbers of different bacteria present. Researchers also considered other factors which can affect respiratory health, including the time of year and the baby's age at the point of their first cold, whether the infant had siblings or attended nursery, and whether they were reg-

ularly exposed to cigarette smoke. The study, published in ERJ Open Research, suggests that babies who have a wide variety of different bacteria living in their nose tend to recover more quickly from their first respiratory virus. By comparison, those who have less variety and more bacteria from either the Moraxellaceae or Streptococcaceae family recover more slowly. Previous studies have shown a similar link between bacteria found in these family groups and the development of respiratory disease in adulthood. Researchers have suggested two possible explanations for the link between nose-dwelling bacteria and respiratory infection: - The presence of certain bacteria causes inflammation and worsens symptoms - A more diverse set of bacteria offers some protective effect against respiratory infection




8 - 14 December 2018

Priyanka-Nick officiate their relationship Bollywood actor Priyanka Chopra and American singer Nick Jonas tied the knot in a Hindu ceremony at Jodhpur's Umaid Bhawan Palace, on Sunday. The couple had earlier exchanged vows in a Christian wedding on December 1. The groom's father Paul Kevin Jonas Sr had officiated the wedding. According to various sources, Priyanka had locked down the venue for a week putting in a little over Rs 10 crore. Various international celebrities graced the event including Johnathan Tucker, Elizabeth Chambers, her sister-in-law Sophie Turner, Lily Singh aka Superwoman and many more. In a joint social media post, they wrote, “One of the most special things that our relationship has given us is a merging of families who love and respect each others faiths and cultures. And so planning our wedding with an amalgamation of both was so so amazing. An important part for the girl in an Indian

wedding is the Mehendi. Once again we made it our own and it was afternoon that kicked of the celebrations in the way we both dreamed.” The theme of the sangeet ceremony was ‘boys vs girls’. The ceremony saw Priyanka perform with her mother, Madhu Chopra, on the song 'Ram Chahe Leela' from the film 'Goliyon Ki Raasleela' Ram Leela'. The song 'Gallan Goodiyan' from Priyanka’s film 'Dil Dhadakne Do' was also a big hit. At the Christian ceremony, their traditional first dance was on Roberta Flack’s The First Time I Saw Your Face, after which they left the venue in a classic red car, owned by the hotel. A fireworks display was organised, followed by a multi-cuisine dinner. Nick and Priyanka flew out of Jodhpur on Monday, for Delhi, where they hosted a wedding reception on Tuesday. Another reception for their industry friends is being planned for a later date.

BOLLYWOOD IN ATTENDANCE AT DEEP-VEER'S MUMBAI RECEPTION Bollywood’s who's who- the Bachchans, Kapoors, Pataudis, and icons of India's cricket pantheon turned up for Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone's star-studded wedding reception in Mumbai. The celebrations at the Grand Hyatt Hotel carried well into the night. For their third and final reception, Deepika looked gorgeous in Zuhair Murad's blood-red, thigh-high slit, embellished gown with a long train. Ranveer looked dapper in a black tuxedo, styled by Rohit Gandhi and Rahul Khanna. The couple walked hand in hand and posed for the shutterbugs. The list of attendees also included Katrina Kaif, Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Arjun Kapoor, Malaika Arora, Rohit Shetty, Rekha, Hrithik Roshan, Anushka Sharma, Anil Kapoor, Farah Khan, Shilpa Shetty, Rani Mukherji and Jacqueline Fernandez. Kriti Sanon, Sidharth Malhotra, Ashutosh Gowariker, Zoya Akhtar, Radhika Apte, Hema Malini, R Madhavan, Nimrat Kaur, Sonu Sood, Ritesh Deshmukh, Vicky Kaushal, Abbas Mustan, and Rakyesh Omprakash Mehra also came to wish the newly wed couple. The Ambani family -- Mukesh and Nita Ambani with their children, and leaders of the sports world like Kapil Dev, Sachin Tendulkar, M S Dhoni, and Hardik Pandya also attended the function.

Sara is going to make a big impact: Soha Aunt Soha Ali Khan is excited for her niece Sara Ali Khan's acting debut in Bollywood. The 25 year old will set screens across the country on fire with Abhishek Kapoor's 'Kedarnath' across Sushant Singh Rajput, which releases on December 7. She also already has Rohit Shetty's 'Simmba' with Ranveer Singh, which will hit cinema houses on December 28. When asked about the movies, Soha said, “She is very talented. I liked the promo of 'Kedarnath' and I liked her work in it. I saw the episode of 'Koffee with Karan' and also enjoyed watching that.” The proud aunt added, “She is confident, talented and she has got the right film to launch her, the promo of which looks exceptional. I think she is going to make a big impact and I wish her all the best.” She said she has not given Sara any advice as she believes the young actor is very much “capable”. “I don't think she needs it. She is very capable. My mother always said, there is always a director on the sets of a film and you must follow the director.” Soha also spoke about her daughter Inaaya Naumi Khemmu, and said she is aware of her and brother Saif Ali Khan's son Taimur's popularity on social media. “As a parent we want development of our child. Working parents are unable to spend time with the child so they look for ways to stimulate the child, how do we give them the right values, how do we be with them emotionally, virtually, educationally, and responsibly.”

Fire broke out on sets of 'Zero', Shah Rukh Khan unhurt Police authorities have revealed that a fire broke out on the set of 'Zero' in Mumbai's Film City. Actor Shah Rukh Khan was present on the set when the incident happened, however, was unhurt and left the set later. Deputy Commissioner of Police Vinay Rathod said no casualties were reported and police are still investigating the cause of the fire. He also added that the fire was confined to electric wiring, electric installation, lights, shooting materials, ropes and curtains. Smoke was seen swelling out of the studio and four fire engines had to be rushed to the spot. Directed by Anand L Rai, the film features actresses Katrina Kaif and Anushka Sharma in lead roles, and a cameo by Salman Khan . The bug budget movie ran into controversy earlier this month after Delhi Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee (DSGMC) General Secretary Manjinder Singh Sirsa filed a complaint against Khan and the Rai for hurting Sikh sentiments. The movie tracks the story of vertically challenged Bauua (Shah Rukh Khan), who falls in love with a cerebral palsy patient Aafia Yusufzai Bhinde (Anushka). Their love story takes a drastic turn when he also falls for an alcoholic actress Babita Kumari (Katrina Kaif). The movie will be out in theatres on December 21.





8 - 14 December 2018

Mahesh Babu meets his 106 year old fan

Allu Arjun relives “magic moment” with DDLJ Allu Arjun's love for Bollywood’s Shah Rukh Khan mirrored on his latest Instagram post, where the actor posted a screenshot of the song 'Tujhe Dekha Toh Yeh Jaana Sanam' from 90s film 'Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge'. “Tuje Dekh tho yeh jana sanam … I felt the highest magic moment of my Life when I watched it in 1995... and today after 23 years I watched it again , and I felt that same magic n that love in my deepest heart . Highest cinematic moment of my life then , now n Forever #ddlj #srk #kajol #srkajol #yrf # yashchopra #tujedekhatoyehjanasanam”. DDLJ is a popular film that featured Shah and Kajol in the lead. It ran at Mumbai's Maratha Mandir for over 20 years after its release. Meanwhile Allu Arjun is reportedly making his Bollywood debut alongside Ranveer Singh in the movie '83'. To be directed by Kabir Khan, it will capture India's victory at the 1983 cricket World Cup. There are no official confirmations yet. Otherwise, the actor has not announced any project since the failure of his 'Naa Peru Surya, Naa Illu India', which was released this year.

Tollywood raves at Rajinikanth's '2.0' Mahesh Babu has a huge fan base among women, all thanks to his charming looks and humble demeanour. While he occasionally meets his fans and posts pictures on the regular, his latest fan meet was the most special yet. The actor met his 106 year old fan Relangi Satyavati from Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh. Babu said he felt “happy, blessed, and grateful” for all the love. He also shared a picture on his Instagram account and captioned the image, “It’s amazing how love transcends through ages... Humbled to see & feel that kind of love coming from someone generations apart from mine The love from my fans has always overwhelmed me but 106-year old Relangi Satyavati garu coming all the way from Rajahmundry to bless me has touched

every corner of my heart. Glad I could make her happy but in all honesty, I am happier than her. God bless her! Feeling happy, blessed & grateful for all this love. #blessedencounters.” Mahesh is currently shooting his upcoming movie 'Maharshi' in Hyderabad after the cast wrapped up the New York schedule. It was also reported recently that the makers are constructing a grand set to shoot the film. A source close to the project said, “They have to shoot many scenes in a village with Mahesh Babu, Naresh and others, so they have erected a big village set at RFC (Ramoji Film City) that costs nearly Rs 8 Crore. The village scenes are very important and they mostly feature Mahesh Babu and Naresh, as the story revolves around them.”

* Schedule is subject to change

MONDAY 10th - FRIDAY 14th December


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Blockbuster Rajinikanth and Akshay Kumar-starrer '2.0' has released and people can't stop talking about the Shankar directorial. The film has received good reception from the masses, celebrities and critics alike, for its technical brilliance. Music composer Anirudh Ravichander took to Twitter stating how he wants to watch the film on repeat. He tweeted. “#2point0 OUT OF THE WORLD EXPERIENCE . ALL INDIAN BOX OFFICE RECORDS WILL BE REWRITTEN Bow down to Thalaivar @rajinikanth , The Master @shankarshanmugh , @akshaykumar @arrahman @LycaProductions @iamAmyJackson and the thousands of ppl involved ! Feel like watching on repeat.”

Tuesday December 11, 2018 01:22 Film : Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara 06:00 Film : Bezubaan Ishq 08:25 Film : Ek Aur Prem Deewani 10:26 Film : Tumsa Nahin Dekha 13:08 Film : Good Buddy Gadbadi * Schedule is subject to change 15:51 Film : James Pandu 18:27 Film : Khoobsurat Saturday December 08, 2018 * Schedule is subject to change 21:02 Film : Aakrosh 01:47 Film : 1920 London SATURDAY 8th DECEMBER 06:00 Film : Prithipal Singh... A Story 23:56 Film : Gangster TIME TV PROGRAM NAMES Wednesday December 12, 2018 08:00 Film : Kahani Kismat Ki 02:05 Film : Mrityudand 17:00 Keys to Kismat 10:48 Film : Jashnn 06:00 Film : The Perfect Girl 17:30 Crime Patrol 13:23 Film : Phir Hera Pheri 08:00 Film : Humse Hai Zamana 18:30 Indian Idol 16:32 Film : Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd10:30 Film : Prithipal Singh... A Story 20:00 Indian Idol 19:05 Film : Star Stop 12:35 Film : The Killer 22:00 Comedy Circus 20:00 Film : Baazigar 15:00 Film : Jungle 23:00 Crime Patrol 18:15 Film : Aligarh 23:30 Film : Awarapan SATURDAY 9th DECEMBER 20:40 Film : Inteha Sunday December 09, 2018 23:48 Film : Woh Lamhe 02:00 Film : Inteha TIME TV PROGRAM NAMES Thursday December 13, 2018 06:00 Film : The Perfect Girl 02:10 Film : Arundhati 17:30 Crime Patrol 08:00 Film : Woh Lamhe 06:00 Film : Login 18:30 Indian Idol 10:26 Film : Mr. India 08:00 Film : The King And Commissioner 20:00 Indian Idol 14:01 Film : Jab We Met 11:03 Film : Luv Shuv Pyar Vyar 22:00 Comedy Circus 17:16 Film : Vivah 13:41 Film : Dildaar 23:00 Crime Patrol 20:42 Film : Khoobsurat 16:30 Film : Aakrosh 19:20 Film : Star Stop 23:18 Film : Gunaah MONDAY 10th - FRIDAY 14TH DECEMBER 20:00 Film : Awaara Paagal Deewana Monday December 10, 2018 01:43 Film : Yeh Hai Mumbai Meri Jaan 23:25 Film : Fox TIME TV PROGRAM NAMES Friday December 14, 2018 06:00 Film : Future To Bright Hai Ji 01:45 Film : Kaun 18:30 Vighnaharta Ganesh 08:10 Film : Naya Shoorveer 06:00 Film : Huff! It's Too Much 19:00 Mere Sai 10:46 Film : Jaanam 08:00 Film : Pyaar Ke Kabil 19:30 Yeh Un Dinon Ki Baat Hai 13:30 Film : Mela 11:06 Film : Keemat 20:00 Chandragupta Maurya 17:00 Film : Baazigar 14:40 Film : Aakhree Raasta 20:30 Main Maayke Chali Jaaungi 20:28 Film : Aligarh 17:55 Film : 36 China Town 21:00 Patiala Babes 20:50 Film : Agent Vinod 21:30 Ladies Special 22:53 Film : Calling Bell 23:59 Film : Four Pillars Of Basement 22:00 Crime Patrol SUNDAY 16th December SATURDAY 15th December



* Schedule is subject to change

MONDAY 10th - FRIDAY 14th December







Actor Suriya also wrote, “Rajini sir's conviction to give bigger entertainment transcends all boundaries and he makes it look so effortless! There is only one superstar and that is Rajini sir for me...” Joining the clique was Karthik Subbaraj, director of Thalaivar's upcoming 'Petta'. He tweeted, “#2Point0 verithanam overloaded... Thalaivaaaaaa...U r Mindblowing & u really set the screens on FIRE!! @shankarshanmugh sir & superb team has made an EPIC & raises the benchmark of Indian films to TOP like Kings...Hats Off!! A film to Celebrate for all of us, is HERE.” '2.0' features Rajini as Chitti and Dr Vaseegaran, and Akshay in the role of Dr Richard. Actress Amy Jackson plays the female lead in the film.





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8 - 14 December 2018

Pramukh Swami Maharaj's 98th birth anniversary celebrated in Rajkot

Bochasanwasi Shri Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha's (BAPS) head Pujya Mahant Swami is currently in Rajkot. On November 29 and December 1 Mahant Swami was in Bochasan and remained in his room and did pooja. It was viewed live by his devotees. On December 2, Mahant Swami addressed his devotees after the morning pooja and said, “The one who follows the rule, even if far away, appears close to us, and the one who does not follow the rules, even if sitting in our laps, appears the farthest away from us.” He later arrived in Rajkot, where he was awaited by a spectacular reception. The temple premises was decorated with flowers, flags, and chandeliers in his welcome. In his reception, Pujya Acharya Swami and Pujya Shrutiprakash Swami gave motivational speeches. In Mahant Swami divine presence, Param Pujya Pramukh Swami Maharaj's 98th birth anniversary was also celebrated. During which, devotees found the opportunity to listen Mahant Swami's address.

Coming Events

Gita Jayanti to be marked with fervour College of Vedic StudiesLeicester, Chelmsford Hindu Society, Akshaya Patra Europe, Hindu Lawyers Association (HLA), Shyam, Nepalese Hindu Forum UK, Oxford Ganesh Seva Samiti, KAHO (Karunadina Anivasi Hindugala Okkoota), and others. Experts and the experienced shall be sharing inputs on how the quintessence of Gita is applied to the current day context including to the world of Corporate Sector, Charity, Art, Environment, Business, Politics, Law, Life and Frame Work.

Sneh Joshi

Two lucky winners can have an evening of music and fun, simply apply online. Two tickets to World of Music, an amazing array of dancers and music, on Saturday 7:30pm to 11:30pm on 22nd December 2018 at the Radisson Road, UB3 5AW.

Essex Indians celebrate Diwali with dance and music East meets west is a unique concert hosted by Essex Indian community group. Festive spirit, food, fun, cultural programme and hospitality makes it one of the most glamorous Diwali celebrations locally and regionally. This year was no different. Their programme had three sections and theme was folk culture across the globe. Singing sensations started with well known Bengali singer Soma singing Bhatiyali and Baoul songs of Bengal, followed by Shreyashi and Molly performing folk based Hindi songs. Similarly western country songs were performed by extremely talented upcoming singers Teerna, Shreya and Tista.

Renowned male singers of London Anirban and Ujjwal put the stage on fire with their dancing numbers. Indra, Prem and Mahesh mesmerised the audience and they represented medical fraternity. Star attractions were fusion songs by 16year old Arya and computer engineer Ujjwal. Well known band Bandal Mainline made everyone in the hall dance accompanied by esteemed musicians Amith, Paps and Upal. Second part of the programme was by dancing queens. Santali dance by Roopkatha and Chandrima, followed by Tripura folk dance by very well known dancer Pritidipa, group rain dance by Chaynsh, Shrey,

Rajat, Vaibhavi, Krishtika and Tista. Adults showed their dancing talents with group Garba by Chitra, Malini, Tripti, Arghya, Jitendra and Ashish. A superb dance workshop was conducted by 13year old Krishtika and her friends. A unique salsa dance were presented by Jayita and Suman. Koli dance was performed by Moumita and Pritidipa. Solo dance performances were by Prasasya, Ishani, Moumita, Krishtika, Chinu showcasing South Indian and Maharastrian and Asameese folk dances. Ahana presented a fusion of Mexican folk with Rajasthani banzara dance,while 16 year old Sanjana presented Labni and hip-hop remix.

The UK’s leading Vedic writer and TV personality

ARIES Mar 21 - Apr 20 Venus and Mercury continue to

move through your solar eighth house this week. You are attracted to the deeper elements of relationships and social interactions now, rather than what you meet on the surface. Mysteries fascinate you and you could be looking for others' motives for doing and saying what they do. With Venus and Mercury traversTAURUS Apr 21 - May 21 ing your opposite sign of rela-

tionships for some time to come, it will put you in the right mood if you intend to indulge your pleasure-loving instincts. Venus, the planet of love and romance throws a pleasing light on affairs of the heart. Existing emotional differences can be easily sorted out now. Mercury and Venus highlight GEMINI May 22 - June 22 your solar sixth house. This is a

period that finds you tending to your daily routines, and health matters. You seek to perfect your skills and as a result, you can be more critical than usual. This period will make you feel like you can finally settle into a more grounded and steady routine instead of letting your schedule run you. With Venus and Mercury in your 5th house of romance and creativity, you should enjoy a very popular phase in your life where everyone wants to invite you to parties. This will give you a chance to meet people of your own calibre and pursue any romantic liaisons that might present themselves. Work is still an ongoing matter, some of you will move and others reassess different options around them.

CANCER Jun 22 - Jul 22

Sardar Patel Memorial Society UK has organised 68th Nirvana Day of Sardar Patel on 15th December 2018 at Nehru Centre, 8 South Audley Street, London W1K 1HF from 5.30pm to 8pm. The keynote speaker will be Mr A S Rajan, Minister CoOrdination, India House, LONDON. Well known broadcaster Mr Ravi Sharma will pay a special tribute to Sardar Saheb. The entry is by special invitation card only, priority for the Life Members of SPMS UK. If you wish to become life member, please fill up the form. For further information and to confirm your attendance, please contact Mr Kanti Nagda (CEO) by email: NB: Due to limited seating capacity at Nehru Centre, all members of the SPMS UK are requested to provide Mr Kanti Nagda with their e-mail ids. They will receive a special e-vite in their mails, without which, entry will be restricted.

For new life members as well as existing life makers there is special raffle.

l BAPS Swaminarayan Satsang Mandal, Harrow/Brent cordially invites you to a Bhajan Sandhya celebrating the life and work of His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj in commemoration of his centennial birth anniversary, on December 7, Friday, at Kadwa Patidar Samaj Hall (UK) Kenmore Avenue, Harrow HA3 8LU.

Gita Jayanti, the birthday of Bhagawad Gita, an important sacred text for Hindus all over the world, will soon be marked at the House of Commons of British Parliament on 17th December. The event will be hosted by Bob Blackman, MP, Chair for the All Party Parliamentary Group on British Hindus, and is organised by Sanskruti Centre for Cultural Excellence in association with several organisations and likeminded groups including Jeeyar Educational Trust (JETUK), Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP-UK),

Sardar Patel Nirvana Day

Venus and Mercury transit your solar fourth house now. During this cycle, you are especially fond of spending more time at home around the family. You are more receptive and tend to be sentimental or nostalgic now. Loyalty and sensitivity in your relationships are more important to you than typically.

LEO Jul 23 - Aug 23

Venus and Mercury are spending some time in your Solar 3rd house. Personal and social contacts will be successful. The Sun continues to highlight your 4th house now, and your focus is on material affairs and comfort issues. Security is a driving force for you at the moment, and you might find that you are especially interested in accumulating possessions.

VIRGO Aug 24 - Sep 23

LIBRA Sep 24 - Oct 23

Venus and Mercury grace your solar second house of finance. During this period, you might receive gifts or bonuses now, or you find much comfort in what you already own and have. You may be a little extravagant with money for the time being, as your desire for luxury and comfort items is increased now, and this is something to watch for. When it comes to love, you value those who make you feel comfortable and secure.

SCORPIO Oct 24- Nov 22 Venus and Mercury continue to grace your solar first house now. Something about how you present yourself, your image, and your manner boosts your personal magnetism during this cycle. You're more charming and you are likely to want to attract things through charm and playfulness. You especially enjoy making a good impression on others, and peace-making.

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SAGITTARIUS Nov 23 - Dec 21

While Mercury and Venus transit the twelfth house of your solar chart, your mind is focused on private matters. This is a time when you are searching for answers. This is a good time for research, quiet contemplation and meditation. You are likely to require a certain amount of solitude in order to get your thoughts together or to be mentally productive.

CAPRICORN Dec 22 - Jan 20

With Venus and Mercury traversing your sign of leisure for some time to come, it will put you in the right mood if you intend to indulge your pleasure-loving instincts. An increase in your social life is likely to bring you in touch with someone attractive. At work you need greater flexibility as well as a degree of patience. Do not step on any one's toes.

AQUARIUS Jan 21 - Feb 19

Venus and Mercury transit your solar tenth house. Relationships with authority figures, superiors, and with the public are in focus during this cycle. It's a time when being a team player reaps the most rewards, and you may be mixing business with pleasure now. This may be a time when you are especially enjoying your career or position and making the most of it.

PISCES Feb 20 - Mar 20

The cosmic energies are decidedly invigorating at the moment. If you are taking a holiday, so much the better ! Not only do you have Venus putting a favourable emphasis on travel but, with Mercury you can be sure of deriving the utmost pleasure from adventures and excursions. Some of you could find love abroad.





8 - 14 December 2018

in brief PRITHVI SHAW RULED OUT OF FIRST TEST IN ADELAIDE India was dealt with a major injury scare last week as opener Prithvi Shaw injured his left ankle while fielding during a warm-up match against Cricket Australia XI. In visible pain, Shaw immediately grabbed his lower left leg after attempting to take a catch on the boundary. The 19 year old was carried off the ground by two India officials. Shaw was expected to open the batting for India in the first Test this week against Australia in Adelaide. The BCCI tweeted, “The medical team is assessing Prithvi Shaw at the moment. He hurt his left ankle while attempting to take a catch at the boundary ropes.” It later added, “UPDATE - Prithvi Shaw ruled out of First Test against Australia in Adelaide.” BCCI also released a statement saying, “Opening batsman Prithvi Shaw suffered a left ankle injury while attempting a catch at the boundary ropes in the tour game against CA XI at The Sydney Cricket Ground. Shaw underwent scans this morning and the reports revealed a lateral ligament injury. Shaw will be unavailable for the First Test against Australia in Adelaide. He will undergo an intensive rehabilitation program to hasten the recovery and be available for selection at the earliest.”

TATENDA TAIBU PLANS COMEBACK TO PROFESSIONAL CRICKET Tatenda Taibu's career has taken a fresh launch as he signed up to play Sri Lanka's Baduralia Sports Club. Reports claim he said he made a comeback as a player because of his son, who has never seen him play. In a statement, Taibu said, “I have said many times that my life is not guided by emotion or well-set plans, but I believe I am led by a voice inside my heart which I cannot ignore. My son Tatenda Jnr also often asks how I used to play, now that he has taken a liking to the sport. He didn’t really get the chance to see me as he was too young at the time. I have stayed extremely fit and healthy and feel I’m still one of the fittest cricketers around, so I thought maybe I can let him see for himself how I can perform.” The 35 year old Zimbabwean wicket-keeper batsman was the youngest ever Test captain back in 2004, at the age of 21. He last played representative cricket in February 2012, before retiring from all forms of the game to focus on church work. He has turned in an overall 28 Tests, 150 one-day internationals and 17 Twenty20 Internationals.

IOA SUBMITS INTEREST TO BID FOR 2032 OLYMPIC GAMES In a bid to bring the Olympics to India in 2032, the International Olympic Committee has submitted a formal expression of interest to bid for the event, and is set to approach the government for support. IOA president Narinder Batra told the visiting International Olympic Committee chief Thomas Bach that India would consider bidding for the games. The move was welcomed by Bach. The IOA submitted a formal expression of interest to the IOC, after which, IOA Secretary General Rajeev Mehta had a meeting with the threemember bid committee of the IOC headed by Jacqueline Barrett, Associate Director Olympic Games/Olympic Candidatures, during the body's Board meeting in Tokyo earlier this month. “We are dead serious about this bid for the 2032 Olympics. So, we have already submitted to the IOC the letter expressing our interest in hosting 2032 Olympic Games. I had a meeting with the Bid Committee of the IOC. They welcomed the move and said that India should have hosted an Olympic Games much earlier,” Mehta said. This is the first time that the IOA has officially submitted its expression of interest to host an Olympics.

Hockey World Cup: India play out 2-2 draw against Belgium India remained unbeaten in the 2018 FIH Men's Hockey World Cup after playing out a 2-2 draw with Belgium in their second Pool C match on Sunday at the Kalinga Stadium, Odisha. India are fielding the youngest team in the tournament, with the average age little over 23 years. However, the young team matched their higher ranked opponents in every aspect of the game. Also, it will take the top spot in Pool C ahead of Belgium on goal difference. Both teams have a win and a draw from two outings. The team will play Canada in their last pool match on December 8, while Belgium will be up against South Africa on the same day. Head coach Harendra Singh was all over his boys, and hailed the team's grit and fitness after the match, saying he has never seen such a fit Indian side. He also praised Robin Arkell, the team's scientific advisor, who was roped in March last year. “I feel proud about our fitness. Credit goes to Robin (Arkell). I have never seen such a fit Indian team,” he said. In the beginning of the match, the Indians looked completely out of sorts in the opening two quarters against Belgium. They lacked co-ordination in the midfield which in turn, gave them hardly any scoring opportunities. The Indians were slow to get off the blocks as the Red Lions dominated the proceedings in the first two quarters, threatening the hosts defence on a number of occasions. Belgium got their first scoring opportunity in the second minute in the form of back-to-back penalty corners but failed to get past the Indian defence. Another penalty corner in the eighth minute resulted in Belgium's first goal through Hendricks, who sounded the board with a ground flick in between the legs of Indian custodian P R Sreejesh. Mere seconds from the first quarter, India had their first real

India blue Sumit in action during a match against Belgium red Doren Van L and Emmanuel Stockbroekx for Men's Hockey World Cup 2018

scoring chance when Mandeep deflected wide a Dilpreet Singh lay over from Birendra Lakra's inch-perfect pass from the midfield. Five minutes into the second quarter, Dilpreet Singh shot wide from top right after being fed by skipper Manpreet Singh. Harendra said he was not surprised by Belgium's “full press” tactics early on. “We were not surprised in the first quarter with Belgium's full press. We had discussed about it. They knew as the match progresses, India will be dangerous. My boys utilised the crowd's energy. In the first half, we were running behind the ball, we didn't have enough possession. We changed the structure slightly (at half-time). That worked really well. We started shifting the ball vertically,” he said. The home team looked more organised and their mid-field finally

started to create opportunities. By the end, two minutes into the fourth and final quarter, Simranjeet scored his third goal of the tournament by tapping in from close range after being set up by Kothajit Singh's fine stick work from the left flank to hand India the lead. Thereafter, the game witnessed end-to-end attacking stuff with both the teams pressing hard in search of the decisive goal. Belgium chose to withdraw their goal keeper for an extra player with little less than five minutes from the hooter, giving Simon Gougard space to score with a slap shot in between Sreejesh's legs late into the game. While India made several impressive moves in the final few minutes, Belgium defended fantastically despite the absence of their goalkeeper.

Gautam Gambhir announces retirement Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir announced his retirement from all forms of cricket, on Tuesday. The 37 year old, who has represented India in 58 Tests, 147 ODIs and 37 T20Is, made the announcement on Twitter. He wrote, “The most difficult decisions are often taken with the heaviest of hearts. And with one heavy heart, I've decided to make an announcement that I've dreaded all my life”. He also posted a video message on his social media pages, said the Ranji Trophy game against Andhra Pradesh starting this week, will be his last competitive match. In the over 11 minute long video post, Gambhir said, “The next Ranji Trophy game against Andhra will be my last day in the sun. It is coming to an end where it all started at the Feroz Shah Kotla ground.”

Gautam Gambhir

One of the most successful batsmen for India, Gambhir has been out of favour with the national team for a while now after a dip in form and last played a Test back in 2016 against England. “ The thought has been with me day and night. It has travelled with me on flights like an irritable excess baggage, it has accompanied me to practice sessions, mocking at me like a menacing bowler. On

certain other days, it has made my dinner taste horrible,” Gambhir said. “Each time I got out playing for India, or KKR or Delhi Daredevils, this thought would turn into a sharp disturbing noise and walk with me all the way to the dressing room shouting that 'it is over Gauti',” he explained. The cricketer has made 8 Test appearances for India, accumulating 4154 runs at an average of 41.95. He said the thought became overpowering during the 2014 IPL, the lowest ebb being three successive ducks in the tournament. “So, here I am, after more than 15 years of cricket for my country I want to retire from playing this beautiful game.” he said he is willing to go through the same “aches and pains' and “fears and failures” all over again even in his next life as a cricketer.

Indian Women's cricket team split over coach Following the Board of Control for Cricket in India's (BCCI) request for interested candidates to submit their applications for the post of head coach of the Indian women's cricket team, T20I skipper Harmanpreet Kaur and deputy Smriti Mandhana have written to the board, requesting them to let Ramesh Powar continue as coach. They also made it clear that Powar alone wasn't behind ODI skipper Mithali Raj's omission from playing XI in the semi-final of the just concluded World T20 in the West Indies. In her letter, Harmanpreet wrote, “I am writing to bring it under your notice that how tremendously our team has gone under positive changes in the past few months and has set a benchmark in the world top teams. Our defeat in the semi-finals was very

disheartening and it brings us all to feel more miserable to see how the controversies has stained our image and questioned the entire cricket fraternity. Sir Ramesh Powar not only improved us as players but did motivate us to set targets and challenge our own limits. He has changed the face of Indian women’s cricket team both technically and strategically. He has inculcated in us the sense of winning.” She explained the decision to drop Mithali was “entirely based on the cricketing logics and observations from the past. Keeping in mind the need of the hour, me, Smriti, selector Sudha Shah and the coach together in the presence of our manager felt that we should go ahead with the winning combination.” T20 Deputy Smriti echoed the

sentiments and wrote, “All the meetings that were held with respect to the playing XI for all the matches came to a unanimous decision which was taken by captain, vicecaptain, coach and selector in the presence of our team manager (Trupti Bhattacharya). Since the introduction of Powar, he along with the support staff has boosted our confidence as a team which has helped us win 14 consecutive T20 matches. He changed the intent of the players and gave everyone confidence.” A furious Mithali had earlier written a scathing letter to BCCI CEO Rahul Johri and GM Cricket Operations Saba Karim, saying a few people in power were trying to destroy her career and that Diana Edulji, part of the CoA, broke her trust.



8 - 14 December 2018

AsianVoiceNews AsianVoiceNewsweekly

Luka Modric wins Ballon d'Or; ends Ronaldo-Messi dominance In a historical feat, Real Madrid's Croatia midfielder Luka Modric was named winner of the 2018 Ballon d'Or, breaking Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi's decade-long hold on the prestigious award. He was followed by Juventus forward and 2017 winner Ronaldo, who came second, and Atltico Madrid and France striker Antoine Griezmann came third. Fourth, was Paris St. Germain's France forward Kylian Mbappe, who also collected the Kopa award for best under-21 player, with Barca forward Messi finishing fifth. 33 year old Modric helped his team win a third successive Champions League title in May and also captained Croatia to their first World Cup final. He was named player of the tournament despite his side losing 4-2 to France. Modric said, “It's a unique feeling. I'm happy proud and honoured, I have a lot of emotions right now, it's hard to describe in words,” as he collected the award from former France forward David Ginola after a glamarous ceremony at the Grand Palais in Paris. He added, “It's a big pleasure to be here among all these

players. I am still trying to realise that I have become part of a group of exceptional players to win the Ballon d'Or throughout history.” Modric never really had a rosy start, having been criticised in his debut season at the Bernabeu in 2012 and named the worst signing of the year in a poll by a newspaper. He however, began to demonstrate the quality he had shown back at Spurs when Jose Mourinho deployed him in a deep lying role in Real's midfield rather than the attacking role he had been given at the beginning of that campaign. He said the positional change, which was first suggested to him by Harry Redknapp at Tottenham, completely changed his form. “The change of position helped me a lot in my career. I used to play more offensively. When I dropped back, I was able to read the game better and show my creativity,” Modric said. The first Croatian to win the Ballon d'Or, he also picked up FIFA's 'The Best' award in


Chris Gayle Luka Modric

October. Organised by French magazine France Football, the Ballon d'Or, is voted for by journalists. It has been dominated by Messi and Ronaldo since 2008. The last player to lift the award other than the Argentine and Portuguese, who have won it a joint-record five times each, was Kaka in 2007, when the Brazilian played for AC Milan. The award was first presented in 1956, and partnered with soccer's world governing body FIFA as 'The Best' award from 2010 to 2015.

FIRST WOMEN’S BALLON D’OR WINNER ADA HEGERBERG ASKED TO TWERK ON STAGE It was a night of firsts at the inaugural Ballon d'Or award, with Olympique Lyonnais and Norway forward Ada Hegerberg winning award for the best player in women's football. However, the glorious moment was tarnished when French host DJ Solveig asked her a question that reminds us why women's victories can't be respected. Hegerberg, who helped lead Lyon win the Women's Champions League last season was rightfully embarrassed and answered a quick “non” when asked to do a provocative dance. On stage, after she collected the award, DJ Solveig who was co-hosting the award with David Ginola, asked her, “You've seen that I prepared a little celebration for (France forward) Kylian (Mbappe) so we said we're going to do something similar. Do you know how to twerk?” Solveig soon faced the wrath of social media following his exchange with the 23-year-old and was quick to apologise for his comments with a video posted on Twitter. “I’m a little amazed and astonished with what I’m reading on the internet, of course I didn’t want to offend anyone,” he said. “This was a joke probably a bad one, I want to apologise to the one I offended, sorry about that.” Hegerberg played down the incident. “He (Solveig) came to me afterwards and was really sad that it went that way. I didn’t really think about it at the time to be honest. I didn’t really consider it a sexual harassment or anything in the moment,” she said. Arsenal centre-back and Ireland international Louise Quinn gave her two penny's worth on the controversy, and said, “It just shows that people just come out with these questions or comments without giving it a second thought, and it must change. Women’s football is taking huge strides and questions and comments like this take away from those strides we have taken. Instead of the attention going to a world-class player for her talent it will all be about Solveig’s question.”

West Indies batsman Chris Gayle was awarded A$300,000 ($220,770) in damages by an Australian court on Monday, almost a year after he won a defamation case against Fairfax Media over an alleged incident during the 2015 World Cup. New South Wales Supreme Court Justice Lucy McCallum gave the ruling for articles published in January 2016 that alleged the cricketer had exposed himself to a masseuse during the tournament. Gayle had previously sued the news agency over a number of articles published in January 2016 across a variety of Australian news outlets over the same claims. Chris Gayle's spokesman Grant Vandenberg addressed the media after the verdict saying Gayle was “vindicated today by the judge, he's already been vindicated by the jury”. He said, “All he wants to do is play cricket and he'd really, really love to come back to Australia — a country that he loves as much as anywhere — and play in the Big Bash.”


Visa curbs are the death of kabaddi in the UK In a fantastically written piece in the Times of India, light is shed on how new visa curbs imposed is affecting the sports world, and the Indian community. Kabaddi, a sport familiar to the Indian subcontinent, it once lived a thriving life in the United Kingdom. A popular game, there were once 16 kabaddi clubs, 14 annual tournaments and over 10,000 crowds. But today, the scenario is not just different, it's outright depressing. “Kabaddi in England might disappear. We are the victims of a political clampdown,” Surinder Singh Manak, president of the England Kabaddi Federation, UK, said to TOI. His reference is to the new visa restrictions imposed by the British home office. The government decided that the federation could only sponsor tier-5 visas for non-EU players who had participated in the annual Kabaddi World Cup organised by the government of Punjab in the last three years “to make sure they are of adquate calibre”.

Kabaddi World Cup, which is also called 'Badal' Property', a reference to the powerful Badals of Punjab's Shiromani Akali Dal, was stopped after the Congress came to power in the state last year. “The last cup was held in Punjab in 2016. The fact that it has not taken place in recent years means not many players qualify,” Manak said. Around 100 professional players came for the British season until 2015, where the game is played in circle-style format, like in Punjab. Meanwhile, this year the federation has

only managed to put on four tournaments and scrape together five teams. Not one international player has come. Manak said, “It was the Beckhams of the kabaddi world we were bringing over. The players would train at the Sikh temples and inspire the kids. The event used to be twice the size it is today and we used to charge £10 for spectators. The whole of that area was packed with cars.” Now the spectators have thinned and the entry is free. The federation has written to Home Secretary Sajid Javid, but is yet to receive a response. “The main concern the home office has is abuse of the visa system. But there has not been a single case of a player overstaying. They are not competing with locals or taking jobs. Kabaddi is big money in India,” Manak said. TOI reported the UK Home Office denied any “clampdown” on issuing visas to kabaddi players. “The home office is working with the relevant sports governing body to agree endorsement requirements ahead of the 2019 season,” a spokesman said.

A team in the Indian Premier League, Delhi Daredevils has been renamed as Delhi Capitals, the franchise announced on Tuesday. The announcement and release of a new logo was carried out in an event. Property development company, the GMR Group successfully bid for the Delhi-based team for a sum of USD 84 million in January 2008. the team finished as one of the semifinalists in the opening two editions, but since then, they have made it to the play-offs only once (way back in 2012) in nine years. The GMR Group, ahead of the 2018 edition, entered into a 50-50 partnership with Mumbai-based steel company Jindal South West (JSW) Sports for the ownership of the team. The Delhibased team is now set for a revamp of personnel as they released as many as 10 players and trading off three players to get hold of Shikhar Dhawan from Sunrisers Hyderabad. Delhi can fill up to ten slotsseven Indian positions and three overseas spots, having retained 14 players from the previous team during the auction on December 18.

AV 8th December 2018  

Asian Voice weekly newspaper (Issue 31)

AV 8th December 2018  

Asian Voice weekly newspaper (Issue 31)