January 2022 New Year Special Edition

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A Division of Qld Multicultural Times Print Post Approved PP : 424022 1724 | ISSN 2652-6182

Volume 18, Number 5 Saturday, January 15th, 2022

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Qld records 9,581 new cases of covid-19 Gold Coast surge concerning authorities Queensland's Chief Health Officer says almost a quarter of all people hospitalised in the state for COVID-19 are on the Gold Coast, suggesting the city is experiencing a "significant surge" in cases. The state recorded 9,581 new COVID cases from a mixture of PCR and rapid antigen tests (RAT), but Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said authorities were still waiting on some results from private pathology. Of those positive results reported, 3,714 were detected on RATs. There are now 419 people being treated in hospital, with 21 in intensive care and seven of those are on a ventilator. From today five to 11-year-olds can get vaccinated in Queensland, with 800 already booked in at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre today. CONTD. ON PG 45

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Inside

• Local News ..................................4-44 • Real Estate ................................14-18 • Interviews ...................................... 29 • India News ..................................... 38 • Fiji News ......................................... 40 • Entertainment .............................. 42 • Health & Well Being .................... 44 • Business Directory/Classified ... 47 • Sports News ................................... 48

A Division of Qld Multicultural Times Published Monthly OWNERS / PUBLISHERS: Umesh Chandra OAM & Usha Chandra ADVERTISING: 0430 193 715 sales@indiantimes.com.au JOURNALIST/ CORRESPONDENTS • Thakur Ranjit Singh (NZ) • Thilliar Varnakulasingham (NZ) • Shalendra Prasad (Fiji) • Rama Gaind (Canberra) • Ml. Nawaaz Ashrafi • Imam Muhammad Aslam • Pastor Joseph Dass • Haji Abdul Rahman Deen • Jitendra Deo • Nimisha Modi • Ranjita Pillai (Immigration Matters) • Peter Lane Rai • Awadhesh Sharma • Shailendra Singh • Gagan deep Tandon • Ravi Vastrad • Brian Sullivan (Photography) • Amod Datar • Rajesh Chand • Ashok Attri

From the Publisher Welcome to 2022, what a bumpy start, when it was supposed to be plain sailing. Queensland is bracing itself for the onslaught of Covid19 cases. I personally think that the borders should not have been opened, rather managed on a case by case basis. With the large influx of people entering Queensland since the announcement of the borders opening came the large number of cases. If we really wanted the borders to be open they should never have been closed and that goes for the whole country, one national approach would have been better, whatever the numbers are, they would have been there anyway, but it would have been distributed throughout the nation. The extra human resources and financial restraint of policing border control would have utilized elsewhere. National aviation would have continued with checks and balances, masks should have been made mandatory and mass gathering restricted, so the same rule have applied throughout the nation. This would have saved a lot of heartache for people attending funerals for visiting close family members in their end of live condition. International borders should have had

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tighter control, and compliance thoroughly monitored, with a user pays system of quarantine. We do rely on international trade so boats had to come, here again the strict screening and quarantine procedures should have been in place. At the moment and the manner in which the whole pandemic control measures were put in place reflected segmentation and segregation, we are one nation and needed to have a national approach, and we could have avoided the name calling and party politics between States Territories and Federal government. It was quite unfair that no checks and balances apart from Queensland check in app were required to enter Southbank prescient for fireworks , numbers were not restricted , vaccination certificates were not required and no pre-registration was required , white other community functions had restrictions, funeral had restrictions, what I am trying say is that all of this could have been better managed. Labour shortage is the next problem, and hospitality sector is feeling the brunt of it all, the decline in international students is the major contributor to this situation, as most of the international student took

on roles in hospitality sector in their spare time. Many employees are facing difficulty in getting negative test results for their continuing employment, RAT is hard to find and for PCR test the queues are far too long, so the situation is not good and the outlook bleak. This is true for other sectors as well employers are finding it hard to fill in positions. Supermarket shelves are empty as a result of panic buying and yes, toilet paper is top on the list, virtually a repeat for the pre lockdown scenario. The numbers are rising, and testing station overwhelmed. They should have had more testing stations; people want to do the right thing, but they just can’t get to one that can conduct the test. January brings with it many celebrations such as Australia Day and Indian Republic day on 26th of January, Hindu Society of Queensland celebrates its anniversary on 26th January and so does Vishnu Maya Mandir, unfortunately this year the celebrations are overshadowed with the rising number of cases , people are cautious and bit reluctant to attend large scale gathering , especially indoors . January also marks Vishwa Hindi Diwas and Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas. Normally I would be penning down this report from India while attending PBD, but for the last few years this has not been possible. The PBD is on 9th of January and so and in line with that we usually hold our annual Kavi Samellan and Cricket carnival in our Ancestral town of Khetri Rajasthan in the memory of our Dadaji (paternal grandfather). Hindi Diwas in Brisbane was held at Vedanta Centre of Sydney – Queensland chapter, Professor Sarva Daman Singh quite eloquently presented his talk in Hindi and Madhu Khanna’s poetry recital in Hindi was notable. 9th January of also our wedding anniversary, thanks to everyone for your well wishes, Usha and I really appreciate that. In January we were announced ‘The Citizens of the year’ for Brisbane City Council, in January I was awarded the OAM, in January I was bestowed the Bharat Gaurav Award, quite a significant month for us. On a sad note we lost a renowned scholar and a gentlemen Prof Brij V Lal, who was a scholar and historian, his work was deeply valued, and he was a mentor to many. Born on 21 August 1952 in Tabia, Labasa, Fiji he passed away in Brisbane on 25th December 2021 while living in exile. For his honest and upfront comments on human rights of people of Indian Origin in Fiji, he was banned from entering Fiji. His followers were from around the globe as he was many things to many people, near and far. There for many heartfelt messages were received from around the world. I did attend the very big, dignified and disciplined funeral service in Deception Bay. May his soul rest in eternal peace, a historian he was, and his name will be forever enshrined in Fiji’s history. Until next Month, its goodbye from me stay safe and happy reading. —Umesh Chandra OAM Publisher

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Federal Government COVID-19 Visa Concessions The Morrison Government is making it easier for highly skilled migrants to remain in Australia and to continue working in critical sectors as Australia’s economic recovery continues. Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs Alex Hawke said these measures recognise the contribution of skilled migrants who remained here during the COVID-19 pandemic and encourage them to stay in Australia. “Eligible skilled workers, already in Australia, will continue to support local businesses facing critical shortages, particularly in health, hospitality and our regions,” Minister Hawke said. “This recognises the economic value-add of these critical workers and retaining them will greatly assist in Australia’s economic recovery.” “The changes complement the Government’s recent announcement that fully vaccinated eligible temporary and provisional visa holders may enter Australia without a travel exemption from 1 December 2021,” he said. These visa changes will improve access to permanent residence for: 4Existing Temporary Skill Shortage (subclass 482) visa holders in the short-term stream 4Legacy Temporary Work Skilled (subclass 457) visa holders who no longer meet the age “There are currently about 20,000 primary Temporary Skill Shortage and 457 visa holders in Australia who may benefit from these arrangements. Most of these workers are employed in the highest-skilled occupations and the largest cohorts of workers benefiting from these changes include those currently employed in the health and hospitality industries, including many workers in regional Australia,” The Government will also extend visas for skilled regional (provisional visa) holders (subclass 489, 491 and 494) in recognition that this cohort has been adversely affected by COVID-19 related travel restrictions. The Government has announced further measures to support the return of international students and graduates, bolstering the international education industry by: 4Allowing Temporary Graduate visa holders, who have been unable to travel to Australia as a result of COVID-19 international border restrictions, to apply for

a replacement visa; 4Increasing the length of stay on Temporary Graduate visas in the Masters by Coursework and Vocation Education and Training (VET) streams; 4 Simplifying the requirements for Temporary Graduate visa applicants for VET sector graduates; and • Extending the existing measure for student and temporary graduates to recognise time spent offshore studying online to count towards qualifying for a Temporary Graduate visa application Readers must note that Migration Guru has assisted a vast number of clients, in various and complex circumstances. Migration Guru has more than 80 years of collective experience in the industry and a team of Migration Agents / Solicitors. With our vast experience and skills, we are able to provide accurate migration or legal advice based on our clients’ personal circumstances. If you would like more information regarding your visa eligibility, applicable visa subclass, or next steps, Migration Guru can assist you in navigating this process. Unlike many other firms, the First Consultation at Migration Guru is completely free so that clients can get fair, accurate and upfront advise on their visa prospects. Our team may be contacted by via email on info at migrationguru.om.au or by calling 07 3036 3800. Readers are encouraged to follow us on Facebook for all the updates to Migration Law - https://www. facebook.com/migrationguru/ Migration Guru Pty Ltd, Level 18, 127 Creek Street, Brisbane, QLD. Phone: 07 3036 3800 Migration Guru Pty Ltd, 31002, 27 Garden Street, Southport QLD. Phone: 07 5606 6160 Migration Guru Pty Ltd, Level 1, 162 Macquarie Street, Hobart TAS. Phone: 03 6281 8008 Migration Guru Pty Ltd, Level 5, 490 Northbourne Avenue, Dickson, ACT. Phone: 02 6109 9110 Migration Guru Pty Ltd, Suite 124, Level 1, 1 Queens Road, Melbourne, VIC. Phone 03 6240 1930 Migration Guru Pty Ltd, Suite 8, Star Tower, Shahupuri, Kolhapur, Maharashtra 416001, India Disclaimer: - The above article constitutes only generic information on migration issues, and does not constitute specific migration advice to any entity or individual.

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Enjoy authentic ‘Slate’ holiday packages in Phuket

By Rama Gaind

The Thailand bubble has burst, now that its borders have opened to fully vaccinated Australian travellers. Australia is part of their no quarantine on arrival program, but visitors will still need to show they are COVID-free at the time of travel. This news is long overdue. Thai Airways International has launched non-stop flights from Sydney to Phuket, three times a week, and special fares are on offer. Arguably, now is the best time of the year to visit Phuket. The monsoon rains have subsided and the island is abloom. The sun is shining, flowers are in bloom and lush, forested hills burst with life and colour. A perfect dreamscape awaits you, set against a sparkling blue sea! Enveloped in the enigmatic, The Slate is a reimagining of Phuket’s rich elemental history. This paradise setting exudes

natural beauty and sensuous elegance. It’s a place where old traditions meet wondrous new inspirations. Awaken your imagination in this fantastic world. This whimsical, art-inspired beachfront resort – The Slate on Phuket’s secluded northwest coast, is inviting international travellers to embrace the breathtaking beauty of the ‘Pearl of the Andaman’. Some special packages are on offer. What’s more, The Slate’s co-founder and owner, Krystal Prakaikaew Na-Ranong (or ‘Khun Moo’ as she is known to her friends), has revealed a list of expert recommendations for the final months of the year. With a family heritage that spans four generations of tin mining and tourism in Phuket, curious explorers could not ask for a better guide to the island than Khun Moo! These ideas will help holidaymakers maximise their stay and enjoy truly authentic adventures, away from the usual tourist hotspots. Chill out on site: “We have to start at Nai Yang Beach, the stunning yet secluded stretch of golden sand where The Slate is located. This is my favourite beach in Phuket. Surrounded by Sirinat National Park, it is uncrowded and feels blissfully off the beaten track. It also has a flat seabed and is safe for swimming all year round.

Just steps from the resort, Nai Yang Beach is a serene and secluded setting for daytime activities and sunset strolls Whether you want to stroll along the sand, sunbathe, splash in the shallows, spot native wildlife or simply watch the sunset, Nai Yang Beach is a wonderfully serene spot.” Dine with the locals at Laem Sai Seafood (approximately 17 minutes from The Slate): “This charming, rustic restaurant, which is perched on wooden stilts over the sea (or mud flats, depending on the tide!), may not look glamorous but, in my opinion, it serves up some of the best cuisine in southern Thailand. Come and savour the freshest fish and seafood, caught by family fishing boats and cooked to perfection. I recommend dining like the locals and ordering a series of dishes – including a whole fish for the table – and sharing them between your friends and family.” Snap fantastic photos at

Samet Nangshe Viewpoint (about one hour from The Slate): just an hour’s drive from The Slate, Samet Nangshe frames panoramic views of Phang Nga Bay. “Phang Nga Bay is one of Thailand’s most iconic attractions, and guests can appreciate its entire breathtaking beauty with panoramic vistas from the peak of Samet Nangshe, a remote hilltop in Phang Nga province. This spectacular seascape of junglecovered islets rising from the shimmering sea is incredible at any time of day, but especially at sunrise and sunset, when vibrant colours light up the sky and sea. So don’t forget your camera!” Embark on an Art Journey (onsite): guests can discover unique industrial-inspired artworks and instillations, including the Mining Machine. “At The Slate, we strive

Just an hour’s drive from The Slate, Samet Nangshe frames panoramic views of Phang Nga Bay.

The Slate’s two-bedroom pool villa promises a personal haven of tropical calm. to tell the story of Phuket’s industrial heritage through Bill Bensley’s design and unique artworks. To showcase these original sculptures and installations, we have created the ‘Art Journey’, an immersive QR code-enabled tour that transports guests through our living gallery and reveals the influence and inspirations behind our interiors. Phuket’s history is woven into my family story, so I love it when

international travellers learn about our region’s rich history and culture.” The Slate adheres to high health and safety standards, and has been certified under the SHA Plus scheme, which recognises that 95 per cent of the resort’s team members have been vaccinated against COVID-19. It’s never too late to start planning your vacation at this fanciful beachfront retreat!

A Tribute of Professor Brij Vilash Lal (1952-2021)

By *Rajendra Prasad in Auckland

tropical rains, milking and grazing cows, riding horses, swimming in the river or fording the drains and creeks swollen with rain… It is deeply personal, historical and spiritual and in this mystical embrace with Fiji, my heart is torn apart. My mind is the victim of the torment of the heart, for it struggles to find expression in words to truly echo the sorrows and sentiments that constantly ravage it. And in this torment, there is a heartache I have been through every day of my life since leaving Fiji. In this, I find the unique bonding with the land of my birth grow stronger.” Professor Brij Lal perhaps lived with identical pain but his pain was greater, as his longing became greater and more painful because of the Fiji Government decision to prohibit his re-entry indefinitely. Because of it, his feelings and emotions became internalized and he agonized over it. Its mental, psychological and physical consequences cannot be readily perceived but the gravity of its consequences on any individual is always degenerative, which become contributory factors for other malaise to infiltrate, damage or destroy the victims. Indeed, one’s place of birth is an inseparable anchorage of every soul, which remains nostalgically and evocatively attached to every life. For some, it is a shrine and for others an indelible memory. For Professor Lal, the village of Tabia was his shrine and his subconscious mind often defaulted to it, regaling him with an era lived amidst the rolling hills of his Tabia village. Those addicted to meditative living, anchored to their past, derive pleasure that evokes nostalgia wherein is embedded soulful thoughts that cannot be shared but pleasurably endured. Professor Lal’s untimely passing has shocked and saddened Fijians everywhere. In every sense, he was one of Fiji’s most distinguished sons whose achievements as a writer, author and a member of the academia has few equals. As an author, with over 40 books to

It would perhaps be wrong to claim Professor Brij Vilash Lal as one of us because he was exceptional; a gifted writer and thinker beyond the ordinary. Such people are gifted for purpose and he fulfilled his purpose, leaving behind a nation in sorrow and a community in shock and grief. Cruelly exiled to Australia in 2009 by the Fijian Government for being a threat to national security and peace, he spent the rest of his life struggling to understand the cruel dénouement of his right to return to the land of his birth. In his meditations, he melancholically remembered the village of Tabia in his writings where he was born and to which he was inseparably rooted. The childhood memories of the rustic village and its undulating hills perhaps drew him in its arms every day during the exilic years, as he confessed the cries of his longing heart, “Home is where the heart is!” The Tabia boy had left but Tabia in the boy could never be separated. The exilic years were cruel, inhumane and undeserving. Many of us now settled abroad, live with similar sentiments. We left Fiji but Fiji in us lives but differs in intensity – some like Professor Lal, including me, departure from Fiji became an enduring wound that time cannot heal. In the recall, there is pleasure wrapped in pain. I recapture here my lamentation, as I described in my book, Tears in Paradise – Suffering and Struggles of Indians in Fiji 1879-2004 – “I fondly remember and relish those moments, the nostalgic smell of the dry earth receiving the first 4 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

his name, Professor Lal established the benchmark of excellence for writers to aspire to and his books will continue to inform and educate people of every generation, as most are either prescribed texts or recommended reading in schools and universities. He had a precocious, insightful and thoughtful mind and with his mastery over the English language, he wove his thoughts with clinical precision that left the readers in awe and admiration. If considered a scholar, as he was, he was not an ordinary scholar but something beyond and above it. Professor Lal’s probe on Fiji’s Girmit history (1879-1920) was an epic work of history that truly disclosed not only his scholarship but also his passion and determination in engaging in a task that others evaded or avoided. To engage in it meant scratching the barrel, grabbing fragments of information to write cohesively on a subject, riddled with paucity of information, as both the victims and those who violated them weren’t keen for such probe. One out of shame for what and how they endured and the other to cover their bloody footprints. In this regard, credit must go to Professor Lal for probing a taboo

subject and remove the cover that hid the hideousness of indenture in Fiji. Professor Lal’s first book, Girmitiyas – The Origins of the Fiji Indians, first published in 1983, was a bold attempt to reverse the tide of history and bring the Girmitiya narrative in the public. Prior to this, Kenneth Gillion’s books, Fiji’s Indian Migrants – A history to the end of indenture in 1920 (1962) and The Fiji Indians – Challenge to European Dominance 1920-1946, (1977), comprised the most prominent literature on Fiji Indian history. What is most noteworthy in these enlightening books is that the words ‘Girmit’ and ‘Girmitiya’ were not used, as they seemed buried under the infamy of indenture in Fiji. The word Girmit was deeply detested by the Girmitiyas and yet they were coined in the sugarcane fields of Fiji. Once out of it, they placed a taboo on the words and embargoed discussions on it or about it in public forums. For them, the words evoked painful memories of their servitude and best left to dissolve in the past, rendering it beyond recall. For as long as they were alive and dominant, the code of silence prevailed but by the 1980s, such was not the case, as most had passed on and those few around

and in advanced age, could no longer care, leave alone defend the code. At this point of transition, Professor Lal boldly entitled his debut book, Girmitiyas – The Origins of the Fiji Indians (1983), which opened a new vista of probe into that era, wrapped in mystery. He assertively filled his text with ‘Girmit’ and ‘Girmitiyas’, referring to the indenture and Indian indentured immigrants, which marked a massive turnaround, leading to the rejected and reviled words not only being accepted but adopted and embraced as treasured gems of Girmit history. The words Girmit and Girmitiyas have now entered the vocabulary, as writers use it as if it was always there when referring to Fiji’s indenture history. For this, credit must go to Professor Lal who retrieved the discarded words and reintroduced them, giving respect, honor and dignity to them. Interestingly, the two words have now gained international consonance and the descendants of Indian indentured immigrants in other countries too refer to indenture as Girmit and their indentured ancestors as Girmitiyas. The words are likely to infiltrate, endure and become the international terms to refer to indenture and indentured laborers following the abolition of slavery in 1833. Professor Lal’s passion and devotion to Girmit and Fiji’s colonial and contemporary history echoed across Fiji, including an active Fijian diaspora, as he wrote and spoke eloquently to draw attention, introspection and discussion. Even those who disagreed with his views could not ignore him because he spoke with reason, courage and conviction. He was aware that not everyone agreed with him but it did not lead to him softening or diluting his writings that were of public interest. When he wrote, he echoed his thoughts and views with rationale and validation, not seeking political correctness or the

middle cause to prevent or deflect backlash. Indeed, such writers and commentators represent a dying breed, which works well with the modern-day politicians to spin their webs, using deceit, distortions and lies unashamedly, slashing their way to attain political power and occupy their seats at the table of democracy. On Fiji’s 1987 coup, he said, "We may have been blinded by our idealism and our dreams for a free and fair society, but the coup of 1987 came as a deep shock to us, to see armed soldiers turn on their own innocent civilians. That was something we associated with developing countries in Africa and Latin America. Disillusioned, many left Fiji altogether, taking with them skills and talent the country could ill-afford to lose. The haemorrhage continues unabated as Fiji’s best and brightest seek their future in foreign lands. This, too, is something people of my generation had never contemplated.” Grahame Leung, a distinguished Fijian lawyer, in his tribute to Professor Lal, said, “Brij was in many respects the moral conscience of the nation, and was unafraid to call out prejudice, illegality and wrongdoing by Fiji's leaders, whatever their political persuasion. It takes courage and principle to stand up and oppose those who would violate human rights and the rule of law.” I reiterate such people are not born but gifted for purpose to make the difference and Professor Brij V Lal new his purpose and he loyally carried out his obligations. May his soul rest in peace. (The views expressed are that of the author and not necessarily of this publication. *Rajendra Prasad is the former Town Clerk of Ba and author of books, Tears in Paradise – Suffering and Struggles of Indians in Fiji 1879-2004 (2004) and Enslaved in Paradise – A History of Mammoth Betrayals of Fijians by the British, Chiefs and Leaders of Fiji 1876-2006)


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Breaking Your Habits – Living Consciously Sadhguru, Isha Foundation Sadhguru: A habit is formed essentially because it brings a certain ease to your life – it makes parts of your life automatic. You do not have to think about it. You can do it just like that. Naturally human beings form habits because unlike other animals, we have not come with many of our traits fixed. You notice a little bit of difference between one dog and the next. They have their individual personality, but most of their traits are fixed. But almost everything is wide open for a human being. Because of this, as a child, you try to form a defense pattern where you try to create your own patterns. Every child creates certain habits for the sake of survival. But generally, children shake these patterns off as they grow, depending upon the level of awareness you create around them. Either by exposure or through education, children change dramatically – they go out for three years and when they come back, parents cannot recognize them.

It is those who are engrossed in selfpreservation who cannot drop old habits. Those who are looking for adventure will drop their habits easily because they are always remodeling their

lives whichever way it is needed for the situation in which they exist. Above all, if a person takes up a spiritual path, his habits will drop because there is no such thing as good and bad

habits. Once you have grown up, habits mean you are learning to conduct your life unconsciously. That may look safe, but it denies you life in so many different ways. Spirituality is the

fundamental tool to break all unconscious patterns that we have within ourselves. What we refer to as karma is also just this. Karma means you are unconsciously creating patterns for yourself, not

only about your behavior but about the way life happens to you. A spiritual process means you do not want anything to happen unconsciously. If you are seeking evolution, if you are seeking liberation, you have to break all your patterns – not good, not bad, but all. If you demolish patterns, you will handle your life consciously. If you take every breath in and out consciously, suddenly your breath has a different kind of power. Every movement in your life has tremendous power if you make it conscious, . If you want to know the power of life, you have to be conscious about it, otherwise it does not even exist for you. Ranked amongst the fifty most influential people in India, Sadhguru is a yogi, mystic, visionary and a New York Times bestselling author Sadhguru has been conferred the Padma Vibhushan by the Government of India in 2017, the highest annual civilian award, accorded for exceptional and distinguished service.

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GOPIO Gold Coast Inc Christmas Luncheon

GOLDCOAST Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin, Gold Coast chapter organized a Christmas Luncheon fundraiser for the victims of

domestic and family violence on 12th December 2021 at Saffron Indian Gourmet from 12noon to 3:00pm. The event sponsors were ; Choice The Discount Store,

MD Success, Devang Patel Photography and venue decorator Varsha Badhe . The special invited guests included Mr. John-Paul Langbroek and Queensland Police Service

representatives, Anya Gupta. Seema Chauhan GOPIO Gold Coast president thanked all the supporters, raffle donors and volunteers for making Christmas Fundraiser

Luncheon a memorable one. A total of $3207 was raised for the victims of Domestic and Family Violence. Queensland Says: Not now, Not Ever. Together End

Domestic and Family Violence Help is available: Visit www. qld.gov.au/ domesticviolence Or call 1800RESPECT 1800 737 732 #EndDomesticand FamilyViolence #GOPIOGC

BAPS Diwali & Annakut Function 2021 at Queensland Parliament House

BRISBANE BAPS Diwali & Annakut Function 2021was held on Thursday, 14th October at Queensland Parliament House. Due to Covid 19 restriction the numbers were limited this year, and guests had to abide by the health and safety regulations. Diwali, also known as the Festival of Lights and is the most widely celebrated Indian festival. Diwali signifies the victory of good over evil and is not only a Hindu festival as all Indians celebrate it. For five days, children and adults come together

wearing their finest clothing and joyously celebrate this occasion. Hindu families start preparing for Goddess Lakshmi’s (Wealth) arrival weeks in advance by decorating their porches with colourful designs, or Rangoli (colourful paintings), preparing sweets and savouries, and lighting lamps. On the night before Diwali, devotees’ light lamps, symbolically asking God to expel their ignorance and enlighten their souls. Lights, candles, and fireworks are an integral part of the decor and festivities.

8 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

The main attraction of this mega celebration is the offering of “Annakut” (literal meaning, ‘the mountain of food’) to the deities, in which a vast array of vegetarian food is traditionally arrange in tiers or steps, in front of the altar resulting in a spectacular display. Devotees would also sing “Thaal” – songs of devotion requesting the Lord to partake in the offering, which will culminate in the “Nutan Varsha Arti” (waving of ceremonial lamps). About BAPS: Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan

Sanstha, also known as BAPS, a global non-governmental socio-spiritual organisation in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations Organisation, with representative centers in all the major Australian cities. Through its more than 3850 centers across the globe, BAPS is involved in more than 160 humanitarian activities. These activities are managed through BAPS’ active worship centers. One such Mandir (Hindu temple) was inaugurated in February 2014 in Brisbane at 45 Clare Road, Kingston

QLD - 4114. BAPS have five traditional Hindu temples in major cities of Australia and 60 regional centres across Australia. Members of the BAPS congregation in Australia and around the world strive to achieve and foster harmonious multicultural and inter faith communities as well as integrating in, contributing to and becoming productive members of society. The members are known for their discipline, dedication, spirit of volunteerism and commitment to a productive life. Warm, friendly and

inviting, this new home of worship and charity has brought a fresh vitality to the community through its multifarious spiritual, cultural and social activities. It strives to promote and preserve traditional values in a modern context, thereby improving individuals, strengthening families and bettering communities.

APOLOGY Brisbane Indian Times apologies to BAPS for the wrong article placed in our November issue, any inconvenience caused is regretted.


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Queensland Multicultural Council Inc (QMC) End of Year Dinner 2021 a smashing success

FORTITUDE VALLEY Queensland Multicultural Council Held their annual dinner function on 10th December at Golden Palace Chinese Restaurant. Organising an event is challenging at best of times , but organising an event during an pandemic has an extra layer of challenge, all of which were handled by the team of Queensland Multicultural Council, the event was originally planned to be held at the Parliament house, then a prospect of

hosting Dr Jeannette Young the then chief Medical officer and the current Govenor of Queensland was brought to the table by Dr Bui and Janeth Deen. The event would have been held at Michael’s oriental, but protocol advised as that as Dr Jeannette was being sworn in as the Govenor she would not be able to attend. Finally, this venue and date was agreed upon and at a short notice the event was delivered. Golden Palace Chinese

Restaurant is a very nice venue, parking became a bit of challenge due to the adjacent carpark being renovated. The event was a sold-out success, a new start up company was given the responsibility of handling the online booking. The event began with a Digeridoo performance which incorporated the welcome to country by Indigenous elder Aunty Betty McGrady. Other cultural items included, Indonesian Dances, Live Saxophone performance.

A sumptuous ten course meal was served, and the guests enjoyed a welcome drink on arrival. Nayda and Umesh as MCs kept the momentum of the night doing on high energy, sprits were high, and everyone enjoyed the night. Raffles and Auction in inevitable in

a function organised by a not for profit organisation. Nothing beats better than Bhangra beats for the grand finale when everyone took to the dance floor. Umesh Chandra was recognised with a special award by Janeth Deen and executive committee for his

MATA KI CHOWKI

BRISBANE On 18th Dec 2021 Divya Jyoti Jagrati Sansthan was invited to organize Mata ki Chowki on Housewarming. The program comprised of devotional songs which made you dance in the love and grace of Goddess, a very thoughtprovoking discourse which questioned and enlightened you simultaneously. The aim of the program was to know the aspects of our rich ancient spiritual history and how it is relevant in today's times. The discourse brought to light the practical, scientific, and implementable side of spirituality. It revealed that God or that Supreme Soul is not just to be heard in stories but to be seen and experienced through the science of Self-realization

called Brahm Gyan. The attendees thoroughly enjoyed the entire program with attentive listening and dancing to the blissful Bhajans. The program was followed by a sumptuous meal. ABOUT DJJS: Divya Jyoti Jagrati Sansthan (DJJS), established and run under the Mentorship of His Holiness Shri Ashutosh Maharaj Ji, is a registered socio-spiritual, not-for-profit organization. To realize the vision – ‘From Self Awakening to Global Peace’ and to transform the torn and tormented humanity into a peaceful “global family”. IN AUSTRALIA: In Australia, DJJS has

10 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

been actively working for the community for more than 10 years now. It has been organizing and participating in various cultural, social, and spiritual events across different cities like Sydney, Perth, Brisbane, Melbourne, and Adelaide. To name some of the events - Told the significance of Holika Dahan and Ram Navmi through an engaging play, carried out Kalash Yatra (Traditional Procession), and performed collective Yagya, we brought the festivity to King George Square for the first time and showcased the scientific aspects of ancient Indian Kitchen and the highly advanced and regarded Gurukuls of ancient India.

long-standing contributions to Queensland Multicultural Council, he is one of the founding members and still very active within Queensland Multicultural Council. Asti Mardiasmo did a wonderful job as the event coordinator. Overall a very successful event.


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12 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022


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CoreLogic: Housing values end the year 22.1% higher with the pace of gains continuing to soften as multi-speed conditions emerge Hedonic Home Value Index 4 January 2022

УТ

Australian housing relative the larger capitals, Regional Queensland CoreLogic: Housing values end to the year 22.1% higher with the pace of gains was values were 1.0% higher as well as better support the clear standout across continuing to soften as multi-speed conditions emerge in December, slowing from for housing demand with the rest-of-state markets 0./- '$ ) #*0.$)" 1 '0 . 2 - УюТ‫ ڔ‬#$"# - $) ( -я in freshly advertised through December has been a a 1.3% rise in November, Queensland in“A surge particular inlistings December, with housing .'*2$)" !-*( УюХ‫ ڔ‬-$. $) *1 ( -я *)/$)0$)" /# .*!/ )$)" & 4 ! /*- $) / &$)" .*( # / *0/ *! /# ' *0-) ) 4 ) 4 continuing the softening showing strong interstate values up 2.4%, however /- ) $) /# (*)/#'4 "-*2/# - / /# / # . ) 1$ )/ .$) /# #*0.$)" ( -& /.я '*)" 2$/# .*( ( ) # 2$) . 0. 4 3 (*1 /#-*0"# 4 '$ ' #$"# *! ФюЪ‫" ڔ‬-*2/# $) .$")$!$ )/ !!*- $'$/4 *)./- $)/. ) ) $)/ -./ / trend) /$*) ' $) in the monthly growth migration. Additionally, we over the" /$1 year the strongest - # ФТФУю migration,” Mr Lawless said. rate that has been evident haven’t seen the same level regional markets have been . 2 ''$)" 1 '0 ++- $ /$*) .'*2.я *) $/$*). - *($)" "$*) ' 0./- '$ ) #*0.$)" 1 '0 . # 1 . ) .*( - ) 2 since(*-the index. ) -of supply response seen in *! ФюФ‫ڔ‬я /# New South Wales (29.8%) $1 -. national (*)"./ /# +$/ ' $/$ "$*) ' . *! (*( )/0( 2$/# (*)/#'4 -$. #$"# ./ $) )$) 0./- '$ ю -*.. /# (*)/#'4 # )" !-*( (*)/#.ю "$*) ' 0 - ./ ) *0/ -*.. /# (29.5%). moved through +$/ '.я /# a cyclical in - )" other regions, with the ).' ) 2 . /# and 'Tasmania ТюУ‫ '' ! ڔ‬$) ' *0-) #*0.$)" 1 '0 . Ѱ/# !$-./ (*)/#ѣ*)ѣ(*)/# - ./ѣ*!ѣ./ / ( -& /. $) ( -я 2$/# #*0.$)" 1 '0 . 0+ ФюЦ‫ڔ‬я high ! '' $) of ' *0-) 2.8% #*0.$)" 1 '0 growth in advertised The ./ -most popular . .$) in /* trend - ФТФТѱя /#-*0"# /* #*2 1 - *1supply - /# 4 - /# ./-*)" "$*) ' ( -& /. # 1 regional ) $) ФюЫ‫ ڔ‬.0-" $) -$. ) ''$)" 1 '0 .ю 2 *0/# ' . ѰФЫюЪ‫ڔ‬ѱ ) .( )$ ѰФЫюЧ‫ڔ‬ѱю March 2021. As 2dwelling remaining well below markets have seen housing ) ' $ я '*)" 2$/# "$*) ' 0average ).' ) я - /#in these # (*./ +*+0' - "$*) ' ( -& /. # 1 . ) #*0.$)" 1 '0 . -$. value -$. ) appreciation slows, markets.” values rise more than 30% *)'4 -* - "$*). 2# - /# - $. )* 1$ ) *! 1 '0 "-*2/# (*- /# ) ХТ‫* ڔ‬1 - /# ' ) - 4 -я 2$/# /# *0/# -) conditions are becoming On the other end of the over the calendar year, with .'*2$)" %0./ 4 /я 2$/# /# (*)/#'4 - / *! "-*2/# - #$)" ) 2 $"#' ) . ) #* '# 1 ) - *- $)" /# #$"# ./ ))0 ' -$. $) ( -ю home values at 37.7%, Queensland’s Sunshine Coast at and more 4 '$ ' #$"# $) diverse amongst the spectrum, momentum has followed thebySouthern Highlands ХХюЩ‫ڔ‬ю CoreLogic’s Research Tim Lawless said: “These regions capital cities andDirector regional slowed quite sharply in Shoalhaven recording the .#*2 ' .. *! ) !!*- $'$/4 # '' )" - ' /$1 /* /# ' -" - !/ - ' $)" /# 0+.2$)"я $/ $. ' - /# 0++ - ,0 -/$' *! /# areas +$/ '.я . 2 of Australia. Across Melbourne and Sydney highest annual rise in home '' . // - .0++*-/ !*- #*0.$)" ( ) 2$/# #*0.$)" ( -& / $. )*2 ' $)" /# .'*2 *2)ю -*.. /# 0 ).' ) $) + -/$ 0' - .#*2$)" ./-*)" $)/ ($"- /$*)ю markets, *( $) +$/ '.я 0++ 2 ''$)" 1 '0 . 2 - 0+ ФюШ‫ ڔ‬$) the capitals, the monthly -./ / dwelling with both - ,0 -/$' values at 37.7%, followed Additionally, we haven’t seen the same level of supply response /# ( - ,0 -/ - *(+ - 2$/# ХюЩ‫ ڔ‬-$. -*.. /# '*2 - change ranged from a /-0.1% cities the ) -* ($ ' softest *! /# by ( -& Queensland’s Sunshine . ) $) */# - - "$*).я 2$/# /# ) $) 1 -/$. .0++'4 recording ,0 -/$' /ю remaining well below average in these markets.” fall in Melbourne housing monthly reading Coastgrowth at 33.7%. “We have seensince this trend in previous cycles, where more ) /# */# - first ) *! /#month-on .+ /-0(я (*( )/0( # . .'*2 ,0$/ 3+ ).$1 #*0.$)" ( -& /. # 1 .#*2) " / - ' 1 '. *! 1*' /$'$/4ё values (the October 2020. After leading the upswing, .# -+'4 $) ' *0-) ) 4 ) 4 2 ''$)" ( -& /.я 2$/# */# #*0.$)" 1 '0 . / ) /* -$. (*- /#-*0"# /# 0+.2$)" 0/ - *- month in .*!/ Melbourne “A - ФТФТю surge larger in decline freshly it isphase clear $/$ . -fall *- $)" /# ./ (*)/#'4 - $)" .$) /* through the down of the the cycle,”upper Mr Lawlessquartile . $ ю housing values since advertised listings through of the housing market is Index2020), results asthrough at December October to31, 2021 December has been a key now leading the slowdown. a 2.9% surge in Brisbane factor in taking Change some in heat the combined dwellingAcross values dwelling values. Brisbane out of the Quarter Melbourne and capitals, uppervaluequartile Month Annual Total return Median and 4 ) Adelaide, along with Sydney housing markets, dwelling values were up 4 ТюХ‫ڔ‬ ФюЩ‫ڔ‬ ФЧюХ‫ڔ‬ ФЪюФ‫ڔ‬ ‫ټ‬УяТЫЪяЦУФ regional Queensland, are the along withУюЧ‫ڔ‬ some demand 2.6% in ‫ټ‬ЩЫЧяУТЪ the December ' *0-) ѣТюУ‫ڔ‬ УЧюУ‫ڔ‬ УЩюЫ‫ڔ‬ only -$. ) broad regions where headwinds quarter compared with a ФюЫ‫ڔ‬ ЪюЧ‫ ڔ‬causedФЩюЦ‫ ڔ‬by ХФюТ‫ڔ‬ ‫ټ‬ШЪХяЧЧФ there is ' $ no evidence of value significant 3.7% rise ‫ټ‬ЧШЫяЪЪФ across the lower ФюШ‫ڔ‬ ЩюФ‫ ڔ‬affordability ФХюФ‫ڔ‬ ФЪюТ‫ڔ‬ -/# ТюЦ‫ڔ‬ ТюЦ‫ڔ‬ УХюУ‫ڔ‬ УЩюЫ‫ڔ‬ ‫ټ‬ЧФЪяЧЧУ growth slowing just yet, with constraints and negative quartile and broad middle of * -/ УюТ‫ڔ‬ ЦюФ‫ڔ‬ ФЪюУ‫ ڔ‬Mr ХХюЦ‫ ڔ‬market. ‫ټ‬ШЫЦяФШУ the monthly rate of growth interstate migration,” the -2$)a new cyclical high ТюШ‫ڔ‬ ТюЩ‫ڔ‬ УЦюЩ‫ڔ‬ ФУюЦ‫“ڔ‬We have ‫ټ‬ЦЫЪяУШЪ reaching Lawless said. seen this trend ) -- ТюЫ‫ڔ‬ ФЦюЫ‫ڔ‬ ФЫюШ‫ڔ‬previous ‫ټ‬ЪЫЦяХХЪ in December. RegionalЦюТ‫ڔ‬ Australian in growth cycles, *( $) +$/ '. ТюШ‫ڔ‬ ХюУ‫ڔ‬ ФЦюХ‫ڔ‬ ‫ټ‬ЩЫХяШЧЪ CoreLogic’s Research housing values haveФУюТ‫ڔ‬ seen where more expensive *( $) - "$*) ' ФюФ‫ڔ‬ ШюЦ‫ڔ‬ ФЧюЫ‫ڔ‬ ХУюТ‫ڔ‬ ‫ټ‬ЧЦФяШЦШ Director Tim Lawless said: some renewed momentum housing markets have shown /$*) ' УюТ‫ڔ‬ ХюЫ‫ڔ‬ ФЧюЩ‫ڔ‬ ‫ټ‬ЩТЫяЪТХ “These regions show less of with a monthly rise ofФФюУ‫ڔ‬ 2.2%, greater levels of volatility; an affordability challenge the highest in nine months. housing values tend to rise $ ),0$-$ .ѐ ( $ Җ *- '*"$ ю *(ю 0

*- *"$ *( '0 ) 3 ' . Ц )0 -4 ФТФФ

more through the upswing but record a larger decline through the down phase of the cycle,” Mr Lawless said. A two-speed market is emerging across the state capitals. While the pace of capital gains has been easing in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth, conditions across the Brisbane and Adelaide housing markets have gathered momentum. The slowing trend in Sydney and Melbourne can be explained by a bigger deposit hurdle caused by higher housing prices alongside low income growth, as well as a recent surge in advertised inventory levels and weak demographic trends. Slower conditions across the Perth housing market may be more attributable to the disruption to interstate migration caused by extended closed state borders which has had a negative impact on housing demand. In

Brisbane and Adelaide, housing affordability is less challenging, advertised stock levels remain remarkably low and demographic trends continue to support housing demand. Regional markets are seeing renewed momentum in the pace of value growth. Since March 2020, housing values across regional Australia are up 32.0% compared to the 20.0% lift in values seen across the combined capitals. The quarterly pace of growth in regional dwelling values rebounded through the December quarter, in contrast to slowing momentum across the capital city market. Regional dwelling values were up 6.4% in the three months to December, compared to the 5.1% rise recorded in the September quarter. This potentially reflects a new wave of demand as

buyers exited the extended lockdowns in Sydney and Melbourne. Inventory is low across regional Australia, with advertised stock levels finishing the year 35.9% below the five-year average. This compares to combined capital cities seeing stock 14.2% below the five-year average. It is likely regional markets, especially those with lifestyle appeal, will continue to benefit from higher demand as remote working policies are more normalised, and demand for holiday homes remains strong amid continued international border restrictions. However, as interest rates begin to bottom out, and affordability constraints extend to regional markets, these housing markets may also move into a downswing phase over the course of 2022.

Housing values end the year 22.1% higher with the pace of gains continuing to soften as multi-speed conditions emerge Australian housing values were 1.0% higher in December, slowing from a 1.3% rise in November, continuing the softening trend in the monthly growth rate that has been evident since the national index moved through a cyclical high of 2.8% growth in March 2021. As dwelling value appreciation slows, conditions are becoming

more diverse amongst the capital cities and regional areas of Australia. Across the capitals, the monthly change ranged from a 0.1% fall in Melbourne housing values (the first month-onmonth fall in Melbourne housing values since October 2020), through to a 2.9% surge in Brisbane dwelling values. Brisbane and Adelaide, along with regional Queensland, are the only

14 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

broad regions where there is no evidence of value growth slowing just yet, with the monthly rate of growth reaching a new cyclical high in December. CoreLogic’s Research Director Tim Lawless said: “These regions show less of an affordability challenge relative to the larger capitals, as well as better support for housing demand with Queensland in particular

showing strong interstate migration. Additionally, we haven’t seen the same level of supply response seen in other regions, with the trend in advertised supply remaining well below average in these markets.” On the other end of the spectrum, momentum has slowed quite sharply in Melbourne and Sydney dwelling markets, with both cities recording the

softest monthly reading since October 2020. “A surge in freshly advertised listings through December has been a key factor in taking some heat out of the Melbourne and Sydney housing markets, along with some demand headwinds caused by significant affordability constraints and negative interstate migration,” Mr Lawless said. Regional Australian

housing values have seen some renewed momentum with a monthly rise of 2.2%, the highest in nine months. Regional Queensland was the clear standout across the rest-of-state markets in December, with housing values up 2.4%, however over the year the strongest regional markets have been in New South Wales (29.8%) and Tasmania (29.5%).


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16 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022


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Arya Pratinidhi Sabha of Queensland ओ३म ् भर ू ्भुवः स्वः तत्सवितुर्वरेण्यं भर्गो देवस्यः धीमहि धियो यो नः प्रचोदयात ् ओ३म ् Samaj Havan Yajna Satsang at Queensland Vedic Cultural Centre

For further information on Havan Satsang program at Queensland Vedic Cultural Centre 198 Learoyd Road Willawong QLD 4110 please contact Vice President Mrs.Sushila Pathik 33146059.

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING Arya Pratinidhi Sabha of Queensland Inc members held a rewarding/gratifying Havan Yajna and a very fruitful /successful Annual General Meeting on Sunday 19/12/2021 at Queensland Vedic Cultural Centre. Members attended the AGM with great enthusiasm, confidence and positivity willing to work for the betterment of the organisation/Samaj and to do good to the world with righteousness, integrity, uprightness and fairness. Numerous matters

The new year is celebrated all over the world with fun and excitement. The day is celebrated in different places throughout the world, like a festival. New Year is celebrated with great pomp and cheerfulness all over the world.This is a special day for the people and they celebrate in their own way. The new year for different society is different and its significance also differs among different cultures and all celebrate this day

of concerning the Samaj were deliberated during the meeting. Patron of APSQ Retd Justice Pandit Devendra Pathik Ji and President Dr. Sukhvir Singh Ji both thanked all the members for their excellent contribution,teamwork, support and cooperation throughout the year and looked forward to members support, collaboration and participation in all future Samaj activities . Office bearers/Executive Committee members for

2021-2022. Patron- Ret’d Justice Pandit Devendra Pathik Arya Ratn OF , President- Dr. Sukhvir Singh. Vice President- Mrs Sushila Pathik, Mr Arunesh Prasad, Mrs Nirmala Ray. General Secretary- Mr Hari Chand. Assistant SecretaryMr Rajesh Chand. Treasurer- Mrs Roslene Suman Chand. Assistant TreasurerMr Dinesh Kumar. Executive Committee

HAPPY NEW YEAR

very happily. The celebration of the new year reflects towards a new beginning and it teaches to move forward. Whatever we did last year, learned successful or unsuccessful, learning from last year to proceed with a new hope of coming year is the significance of this celebration. It is day of reflection for many, as they look back on the year's failures and successes, pinpointing certain aspects of their lives they wish to

change for the better, things they could do differently in the new year without regrets. On this day, everyone remembers the important events of the past year and appraises the circumstances under which the whole year was spent. Milestones like New Year's Day merrymaking in our lives provides a great opportunity for us to stop to take a breather, so as to be able to reassess our bearings in life; to see where we are as part of the bigger picture in

Members- Mrs Kaushaliya Kumar, Mr Ajit Deshwal,Mrs Lakshmi Singh, Mrs Aruna Deo, Mrs Sushila Sen and Mr Satish Chand, Mr Danny Singh, Mr Ravindra Singh. Trustee- One of the founders of the association and long-time member and executive committee member Mr Dick Sen was elected as one of the trustees of APSQ with the current trustees Mr.Sukarm Pal Singh and Mr.Mul Chand . Auditor- Mr Jitendra Kumar.

our visions, missions, and the journey in our lives towards our destinations. This way new years celebration awakens new hope inside us and overall it is a festival that shows joy,pleasure in people and spreads happiness everywhere. Let's start fresh and make meaningful positive changes in 2022. May the New Year bring you all grand adventures, good health, opportunities, happiness, peace, and prosperity.

ईश्वर हमारा सच्चा मित्र

ईश्वर को कभी न छोड़ें । वही आपका अनादि काल से अनंत काल तक, अच्छी या बुरी प्रत्येक परिस्थिति में साथ दे ने वाला, सच्चा मित्र है । जीवन में कभी सुख आता है , कभी दख ु आता है । कभी लाभ होता है , कभी हानि होती है । कभी कोई व्यक्ति सहयोग दे ता है , तो कोई विरोध करता है । कभी व्यक्ति स्वस्थ होता है , तो कभी रोगी भी हो जाता है इत्यादि अनेक ऊंची नीची परिस्थितियां जीवन में आती रहती हैं । जब अच्छी अनुकूल सुखदायक परिस्थितियां होती हैं , तब तो व्यक्ति प्रसन्न रहता है । उसे किसी प्रकार की कोई चिंता तनाव टें शन नहीं होती। परं तु जब प्रतिकूल परिस्थितियाँ आती हैं , तब वह दख ु ी चिंतित परे शान एवं तनाव युक्त हो जाता है । तब अपनी समस्याओं को सुलझाने के लिए वह सांसारिक उपाय ढू ँ ढता है । अपने मित्रों साथियों से निवेदन करता है कि मैं मुसीबत में हूं, मेरी सहायता करें । मेरी समस्याएं हल करें । मेरे दख ु ों को दरू करें । ऐसी प्रतिकूल परिस्थितियों में परिवार एवं समाज के लोग भी उसकी मदद करते हैं । रोगी होने पर चिकित्सक डॉक्टर आदि भी उसकी सहायता करते हैं । परं तु इन सब की एक सीमा है । ये सब लोग अल्पज्ञ एवं अल्पसामर्थ्य वाले हैं । इनका सामर्थ्य सीमित होने से, सारी समस्याओं को ये लोग दरू नहीं कर पाते। जब व्यक्ति चारों ओर से समस्याओं से घिर जाता है । सांसारिक सहारे काम नहीं आते, समस्याएँ हल नहीं हो पातीं। तब अंत में उसे ईश्वर याद आता है । तब वह ईश्वर की शरण लेता है , और प्रार्थना करता है कि "हे भगवन ! अब तो आप ही मेरे रक्षक हैं । अब सारे सहारे फीके पड़ गए हैं । कोई भी मेरी समस्या को हल नहीं कर पा रहा है । मैं रोगी हो गया हूं। चिकित्सकों डॉक्टरों ने भी हाथ ऊंचे कर दिए हैं । वे भी यही कह रहे हैं , कि "हमारे वश में अब कुछ नहीं है । अब तो भगवान ही मालिक है ।" इसलिए भगवन! मैं अंत में आप

नव वर्ष

भूलके बीती बातों को, एक नए स्थान को पाना है ,नए साल में हमको एक, नया इतिहास रचाना है ।उत्साह न अब गिरने पाए,राहों में न भटकने पायें, छे ड़ें ऐसा संगीत नया,पूरी दनि ु या ही गुनगुनाये, रुकना नहीं है अब हमको, लक्ष्य की तरफ कदम बढ़ाना है , नए साल में हमको एक, नया इतिहास रचाना है ।करके पूरी मेहनत हमको, अपना ऐसा नाम बनाना है , नए साल में हमको एक, नया इतिहास रचाना है ।करके मजबूत इरादों को, हमें अपने लक्ष्य

20 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

की शरण में आया हूं। अब आप ही मेरी रक्षा करें । मेरे सब दख ु ों को दरू करें ।* इस प्रकार से हम दे खते हैं , कि अंतिम शरण तो ईश्वर ही है । कैसी भी खराब परिस्थिति हो, व्यक्ति अंत में ईश्वर के पास ही जाता है । यदि सारे सहारे प्रभावहीन हो जाते हैं । तब केवल वही याद आता है । तो क्यों न सारे जीवन, ऐसे उत्तम ईश्वर को अपना सहारा बना कर चलें, कि ऐसी मुसीबत आए ही नहीं। और यदि हमारे आलस्य प्रमाद आदि अन्य दोषों के कारण से, कभी-कभार मुसीबत आ भी गई, तो ईश्वर की शक्ति हमारे साथ होने से, वह शीघ्र ही नष्ट हो जाएगी। इसलिए यही उत्तम मार्ग है , कि अपने नित्य मित्र ईश्वर को कभी न छोड़ें । वही हमारा तथा सब का रक्षक है । उसी पर सबसे अधिक विश्वास करें ।अन्यों का भी सहयोग लेवें, इस बात का निषेध नहीं है । परं तु सबसे अधिक विश्वास ईश्वर पर करें । अन्य सहारे कभी छूट भी जाएं, सहयोग न दें या कम सहयोग दे वें, अथवा वे सहारे असमर्थ हो जाएँ, हमारी समस्याओं को हल न कर पाएँ, तब भी चिंता न करें । ईश्वर तो नित्य सहारा है ही। अतः ईश्वर को कभी भी नहीं छोड़ना चाहिए। सदा ईश्वर के आदे श निर्दे श संदेश का पालन करना चाहिए। उसके विरुद्ध आचरण नहीं करना चाहिए। *ईश्वर के आदे श निर्दे श वेद के विरुद्ध आचरण करना ही, ईश्वर को छोड़ दे ना कहलाता है ।- स्वामी विवेकानन्द परिव्राजक ओ३म ्

को पाना है , नए साल में हमको एक, नया इतिहास रचाना है ।तोड़ के सरे बंधन हमको, सीढ़ी सफलता की चढ़ना है , पाकर सब कुछ हमको स्वयं को, अहं कार से बचाना है ,नए साल में हमको एक,नया इतिहास रचाना है ।आशायें माँ-बाप की हैं जो उनको भी पूरा करना है , उम्मीद है कोई हमसे जिनको, उन पर भी खरा उतरना है ,प्रकाश हो सबके जीवन में, हमें ऐसी लौ को जलना है ,नए साल में हमको एकनया इतिहास रचाना है । नव वर्ष की हार्दिक शुभकामनाए.


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THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 21


When the fiji times called Fiji Indians as smelly, dark-skinned garlic-eating invaders when the fiji times called fiji indians as smelly, darkskinned garlic-eating invaders The Fiji Times marked its 152nd Anniversary in Fiji with great fanfare. They were in Fiji 10 years before

arrival of the Girmitiyas, the first indentured labourers from India. But they failed to tell what they failed to tell in those early days. Many atrocities, violence, injustice, breach of human

rights and inhumane activities were imposed on these helpless, vulnerable, and illiterate people from India. Yet, the paper never exercised its role, ethics, and responsibility of journalism

to report facts - neutrally, impartially, diligently, and fairly. If anything, they became mouthpiece of the British and Australian colonists and White Settlers and degraded these weak and

defenceless people Indeed none, if any, of the ills of the White men ever made it to the pages of FT because of their selective and racist journalism, which tarnished Fiji Indians as smelly, dark-

skinned invaders, who had no place in Fiji. Read the untold tales of Fiji Times in 4-Part series of articles by FIJI PUNDIT. This is just PART 1…Please read on…

THE FIJI TIMES ANNIVERSARY – PART 1

when FT despised indians and shamed media as lap dogs of white colonists & elites my Master’s Thesis at Auckland University of Technology (AUT) in 2011 , titled: “THE 2000 SPEIGHT COUP IN FIJI: THE ROLE OF “THE FIJI TIMES” LEADING TO POLITICAL INSTABILITY” I will have link to this research at end of this article, and you may access and have a look at it, and read one year’s FT news that have been photographed and used in the thesis, and be shocked to see how FT became a mouthpiece of ethno-nationalists, anti-Chaudhry and anti-Indian brigade .

Thakur Ranjit Singh, FIJI PUNDIT PROLOGUE - PART 1 This is a four-part series of articles on the history of the Fiji Times, from already published articles and my research as Master’s Thesis, and never told in this manner and language. The Fiji Times (hereafter referred to as “FT”) just made a big noise and celebrations about its 152 years in Fiji and praised and commended itself for its achievements. Many, especially Fiji-Indians in Fiji and around the world (Diaspora) may have also clapped but failed to know what FT failed to tell and do as the oldest Fourth Estate in Fiji, which for the most part, despised Indians. Those who studied journalism and seen research on FT would know how it shamed journalism, the Fourth Estate, as media is referred to as. The Government comprises of three arms: executive, legislative and judiciary . These three arms of government do everything necessary to maintain law and order in the state. And media is an additional important and responsible arm to keep a check on these three and therefore referred to as THE FOURTH STATE. DISCLAIMER: All reference to FT is to the foreign-owned paper before localisation in 2010. Hence I do not have any concerns with the 2021 FT. If anything, the Fiji Times of today may be one of the media which stands tall as a respectable Fourth Estate and pride to journalism in Fiji in very trying times in 2021 where the three arms of the government appear to be all muddled up and muddied together.

INTRODUCTION The Fiji Times just marked 152nd anniversary as they came to Fiji in 1869, 10 years before arrival of first indentured Indian labourers (Girmitiyas) from India. Many atrocities, violence, injustice, breach of human rights and inhumane activities were imposed on these vulnerable illiterate people from India. Yet, the paper never exercised it role of the Fourth Estate or its responsibility of journalism to report facts neutrally, impartially, diligently, and fairly. If anything, they became mouthpiece of the British and Australian colonists and degraded these helpless and defenceless people. What appears to be missing is for any children of Girmit to stand up and reveal all the ills of a White foreign media that rarely stood up for their forebear Girmitiyas, and neither for them nor their children till early 21st century. Hence FIJI PUNDIT chose to fill the vacuum, as a duty to my voiceless Girmitiyas who were never able to defend themselves. Most of what I say are from already published materials and thesis, and largely come from

THE FIJI TIMES - PART 1 (OF 4) So, let’s begin. We begin by a research by Padmini Gaunder at Auckland University in 2006. Through historical perspectives, she revealed how FT generated animosity and tension between the major ethnic groups, leading to ethnic conflict. She rightfully stated that FT was the only paper for over a century, and it used its position early to shove a wedge between the races and appeared to represent the ruling class and the elites. She said: This newspaper represented the views and interests of a small group of vested European commercial interests in the country and deliberately caused ethnic divisions by influencing the perceptions of indigenous Fijians towards the immigrant Indians. The newspaper helped to implant fear in the minds of the indigenous population of domination of the country by the immigrant community. This fear led to suspicions and slowly it caused tensions and finally ethnic conflict. Gaunder states that the racial divisiveness of the newspaper appeared to have been founded in the history of FT: The Fiji Times had started its anti-Indian propaganda in its very early days itself, during the indenture period in the colony (1879-1920).Throughout the indenture period, there was often violence in the cane fields, resulting sometimes in murders of the overseer by the labourers. The Fiji Times invariably described these incidents as cold-blooded murder and depicted the Indians as a mysterious race of criminals to whom violence came naturally. In fact what FT failed to mention and conveniently omitted was that in most cases, the violence was provoked by the overseers, and this may be verified by anecdotal verbal literature from our Girmitiyas who told us tales of such injustices, brutalities, and violence. This is well documented in Rajendra Prasad’s TEARS IN PARADISE. Tears in Paradise – Suffering and Struggles of Indians in Fiji 1879-2004 reveals the horrific treatment of Indian indentured workers (Girmitiyas) in Fiji by the British from 1879-1919. Indenture system (Girmit) under which they were recruited was slavery by another name. Working and living conditions were so atrocious that Fiji had the highest rate of suicide in the world and highest rate of infanticide among the colonies that deployed indentured labour. Yet none of these made it to the pages of FT because of their selective and racist journalism, which tarnished Fiji Indians as smelly, dark-skinned invaders. Until 1920, the white settlers regarded Indian and Fijians (Fijians refer to Itaukei) as dark-skinned people who were inferior to white settlers. It was only after 1920 and 1921 strikes by Indians that they befriended the Itaukei and started turning them against the Indians.

22 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

It started for Girmitiyas in 1879, but the Fiji Times was in Fiji 10 years before, boasting to be there in 1869. Yet, they failed to exercise its role as a responsible media in most of its life in Fiji. And as my 4 part article series will show, their hatred for Indians culminated in contributing to removal of Chaudhry’s “Indian Government” in 2000. Keep on reading the series. Pundit Tej Ram Prem of Sydney enacting a suicide scene at a Girmit play. Fiji had the highest rate of suicide in the world and highest rate of infanticide among the colonies that deployed indentured labour. Yet none of these made it to the pages of FT because of their selective and racist journalism, which tarnished Fiji Indians as smelly, dark-skinned invaders.

Auckland Author, Rajendra Prasad’s “TEARS IN PARADISE” tells harrowing tales, the suffering and atrocities suffered by our Girmitiyas, but none of them ever made it to the pages of a racist colonial Fiji Times which was a lapdog to the British. This book is available in Brisbane and those wishing to buy a copy buy a copy or read it can contact Thakur, the author of this article or his sister, Kokila Woodrow in Goodna, Brisbane. The Fiji Times became their main tool for conveying this pro-Fijian/anti-Indian stand. It deliberately disseminated, through headlines, news stories, letters to the editor and editorials news about Indians that would cause unease in the minds of the Fijians. A historian and acknowledged author on early Indian history in Fiji, Dr. K. L Gillion noted similar racial slurs in FT of those early years against Fiji Indians. Citing an incident in 1922 when an Indian deputation was visiting Fiji, the following letter appeared in the then Fiji Times and Herald of 1 March 1922: I would say that 99 per cent of the Europeans in Fiji and the Fijians are loyalists and the handing over of Fiji to evilsmelling, treacherous, noneducated, garlic-eating Indians would be one of the greatest crimes in the history of the British Empire and an event which would possibly meet with some opposition. Gillion (1977) also recorded instances when the newspaper called for deportation of Indian leaders to India, used derogatory words against Indians, was accused of reinforcing “apprehension about Asian penetration of the South Pacific” and expressed contempt on celebrating jubilee, in 1929, of the arrival of the first Indian settlers and declaring of 15 May as a public holiday. (Even Frank Bainimarama and Fiji First Government is struggling with request of Fiji Girmit Foundation NZ of 2015 to declare Girmit Public holiday, almost a century after when FT initially opposed it. It seems we

have progressed very little, and still waiting for that to become reality.) In the issue of January 29, 1929, The Fiji Times and Herald wrote: Fiji does not require permanent settlers of the Indian type. Her lands, her climate are for Europeans who can employ what labour they require. These set tones of racial slant of FT. Things do not appear to have changed in some fourteen decades of its presence in Fiji. The newspaper was established in Fiji in 1869 – exactly ten years before the arrival of the first Indian indentured labourers from India. These helpless labourers went through grave brutalities and violence at the hands of British and Australian overseers, including the breach of basic human rights, and flouting of international laws that took place under the nose of a supposedly free press. However, FT never appeared to have taken a stand on the injustices meted out to these labourers. There have been unreported cases about bullying, filthy plantation lines (accommodation) where labourers were penned like animals, people broken by diseases, the beatings, and the use of law to subjugate these people: …the rough young Australian overseers… used the Indian women…the system of European dominance… the law courts unconsciously favoured the articulate employer against the bewildered or ignorant labourer…the Indians remembered the deceit, the slave-driving drudgery, and the degradation and vice; the CSR, the planters, and Europeans generally

Poor helpless Indian Girmitiyas (indentured labourers) in Fiji were despised by FT through their selective and racist journalism, which tarnished Fiji Indians as smelly, dark-skinned, garlic-eating invaders. saw the Indians as coloured labour force to be kept under. All this happened under the watch of FT which not only remained silent and uncritical of the elite, but in fact, became their mouthpiece. As media theory of propaganda Model of Media suggests, the media depends on the elite, remains uncritical of them and in fact participates in propaganda campaigns helpful to elite interests, who in the old Fiji represented the Colonial Sugar Refining Company (CSR), the Europeans and the British government. Things did not seem to have changed as studies suggests the elites subsequent to Fiji independence in 1970 changed to the Eastern (Lauan) Chiefs, the elite Itaukei, and the rich business (mostly Gujarati) community. Read in the other three parts how Fiji Times since Independence in 1970 became mouthpiece of the Chiefs,(read Ratu Mara) elite Itaukei, Lauan Chiefs and rich businesses. My second part, together with Parts 3 and 4, will reveal the truth in the adage that leopards do not change colour and tells of the FT

post-independence and how it contributed to destabilising of democracy in Fiji , culminating in removal of Chaudhry’s Peoples Coalition government in May 2000. [About the Author: Thakur Ranjit Singh is former publisher of now closed, partly governmentowned Daily Post newspaper, a journalist, a media commentator, a community worker in Auckland and runs his blog FIJI PUNDIT. He did a research as part of Masters in Communication (MCS) thesis at Auckland University of Technology (AUT) in 2011. This was on the role of the Fiji Times in contributing to destabilising of democracy by a partisan newspaper that culminated in Speight’s attempted coup in 2000. Details in the articles are largely from his thesis titled: THE 2000 SPEIGHT COUP IN FIJI: THE ROLE OF THE FIJI TIMES LEADING TO POLITICAL INSTABILITY. E-mail:thakurjifj@gmail.com.] Link to thesis: https:// openrepository.aut.ac.nz/ handle/10292/2554


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THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 23


Pandit Totaram Sanadhya Fiji is an island nation situated in the Pacific Ocean in the southern hemisphere. It comprises numerous islands. The majority of population lives on the two largest islands, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu. The population of Fiji includes about 37.5% people of Indian origin. Fiji became a British colony in 1874 and an independent country in 1970. Originally, Indians were brought to Fiji under an agreement to work for a five-year term. The first ship with Indians under the agreement arrived in Fiji on 14 May 1879. The Fiji Indian community marks this date as Girmit Day. Girmit is the Indian vernacular pronunciation of agreement. All those who came under Girmit were known as Girmitiya. British called them indentured or bonded labour. They also addressed them coolie. Between 1879 and 1916, a total of 60,553 Indians came to Fiji as indentured labour. The majority were transported form Kolkata port in the beginning, and later on, from Chennai. Indians in Fiji lived a life of hardship and despair. Their working and living conditions were appalling. They experienced discrimination, deprivation and mistreatment. Totaram Sanadhya was one of the bonded labourers. He was brought to Fiji in 1893 and experienced the similar sufferings as others. He described them in a book after his return to India. He explained how the workers were enticed in India, tricked into signing contracts, forced to travel to Fiji and their treatment in Fiji. A number of events he experienced and documented demonstrated the systemic cruelty and dehumanisation of indentured Indians. Totaram was born in 1876 in village Hirangau, district Firozabad, in modern Uttar Pradesh. His father passed away in 1887. Deceitful lenders appropriated his mother’s jewellery and other family valuables. Totaram was upset by the family’s financial situation and left home in 1893 in search of a job to support his mother. He arrived Prayagraj, looked for a work but could not find anything suitable. In Prayagraj, once when he was in the market, worried with his situation, a person approached him, and indicated that he could arrange a job. The man was a recruiting agent for indentured labourers. Such agents were engaged by the government to hire Indians to work in Fiji. They used to roam around public places such as markets, transport hubs and religious centres, and targeted those who were mostly in distressed conditions, to lure them with false hopes and promises. These agents were known as Arkati. Totaram consented to the Arkati’s proposal and followed him to a house where many other men and women were already staying. After a few days in the house, he was brought in a group of 165 people to a magistrate, to register as an indentured labourer. The Arkati, who was fully aware of the questions that the magistrate asked, had advised the group to answer ‘yes’ to all questions. In about twenty minutes all were registered. They were brought to Kolkata by a special train and taken to a depot, the place where indentured labourers were kept before

departure to Fiji. At the depot, an immigration officer disclosed details of travel to Fiji, work as a labourer for five years and payment. Totaram had believed that he would be working for six months and then would return home. He objected to the five-year term and attempted to withdraw from the agreement. He was forcibly locked in a room and compelled to agree to the specified terms. Medical checks were conducted and emigration passes issued. Totaram was born in a Brahmin family but authorities falsely recorded his caste as Thakur in his pass. Totaram, together with five hundred Indians boarded the ship at Kolkata. Fellow travellers on the ship established a close bond of camaraderie and became Jahaji Bhai. The ship arrived in Fiji on 28 May 1893 and disembarked at Nukulau Island. The island was a quarantine centre and also a depot for holding newly arrived Indians until their pickup by plantation owners. Doctors performed medical checks of each labourer. Their clothes and other items were sanitised. They were divided into groups. Plantation owners paid a fee to the Immigration Department and collected their assigned labourers. Totaram objected to his treatment as a servant by local authorities, but he was forced into a boat and taken to the Colonial Sugar Refining Company’s Nausori Plantation. At the plantation, a twelve feet long and eight feet wide room accommodation was built in a complex known as coolie lines. A man with wife or three males or females in a group was allocated such a room. This was used for sleeping, cooking and all other domestic purposes. The company provided them provision on a weekly basis and its cost was deducted from their pay. The amount given for a week was only enough for four days. Labourers had to manage their supplies to last for a week or go hungry and ask free Indians for food. Totaram complained about the quantity of provision. He convinced the manager that the provision for him was inadequate. The manager

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increased his provision, but it was reduced to the previous level when others also demanded a similar increase. Labours were under direct control of a kulambar or overseer and sardar. A sardar was generally an Indian person who assisted the kulambar in allocating the daily work and implemented his orders. Engaging an Indian as sardar also helped the plantation owners to divide the labourers. Labourers were given a land of sugarcane 1,200 to 1,300 feet long and six feet wide to weed with a hoe or other work of similar difficulty. If workers did not complete the allotted daily task, they were fined. To get his daily workload reduced, once he fooled the doctor into believing him to be unwell during a medical check up. People were forced to commit unlawful acts in desperation. Totaram’s frustration with the situation once led him to attempt suicide in his room. At the moment he was about to hang, someone knocked at the door. He removed his noose and opened the door. A local Fijian was at the door looking for food. Totaram thought God had saved him and realised the folly of misadventure. He decided against committing suicide. An overseer used to whip the workers during his round if he did not like them. He could increase the daily task, reduce the daily wage or harass the family. Everyone was afraid of overseers. Once Totaram was working in the field. The overseer came to him and hit him hard without a preceding reason or excuse. Totaram became angry and knocked him in return. He felt certain that the overseer would kill him if he stopped punching his attacker. In the end, the overseer begged him to stop. Totaram agreed to his request after he promised not to take any action against him. The overseer became friendly towards him afterwards. After five years of bonded labour, Totaram became a free man. He was in debt at completion of his tenure. Only a few could save money during their indenture. He borrowed money from free Indians and leased land to become a farmer. He learnt the Fijian language, which helped him communicate with the local inhabitants. He acquired skills in carpentry, metalwork and

photography. With photography, he intended to take photos of atrocities against labourers, and publish. He educated himself in religious matters and became a Pandit, Hindu priest. He started performing religious ceremonies at homes of free Indians. He devoted his time and money to help bonded labourers. Considering him a troublemaker, the plantation owners barred his entry to their lands. He used to sit at the boundaries and sing devotional songs. Passing Indians used to stop to listen to his Bhajans and then talked about their hardships. Totaram started Ramlila in Fiji. The story of Ram’s gave the Girmits hope for a better future. Totaram married Gangadevi. They had no children. They adopted a Fijian girl. Her biological parents maintained regular contact with the girl. Totaram came into contact with Mr Burton, a Christian missionary. Burton realised that to convert Indians to Christianity, he needed to convert Totaram. He approached him with this intent. Totaram argued with him on religious codes. He highlighted the suffering of Indians, inflicted by Christians in position of power. He enumerated the crimes committed by Christian perpetrators. Despite such arguments, they became friends and respected each other’s opinions. In March 1914, Totaram left Fiji for India. In India, he toured many regions, spreading the news of gruelling conditions that Indian men and women were subjected to endure in Fiji. With the help of a journalist named Banarasidas Chaturvedi, he published a book in Hindi titled ‘My Twenty One Years in the Fiji Islands’. Soon it was translated into other Indian languages. He also wrote ‘The Story of The Haunted Line’ that described desperations of the bonded labourers. Totaram described many events of outrage against Indians that were committed by authorities working under the indenture system. One example is that of Kunti. Arkatis had deceived Kunti and her husband and sent them to Fiji as Girmitiya. Both were assigned to a banana plantation. The overseer assigned Kunti alone in a

secluded area to cut grass. Then he approached and tried to rape her. Kunti fled from him and jumped into the nearby river. She was saved from drowning by an Indian boatman. Another atrocity related to Narayani. She gave birth to a baby who died after birth. According to the law, she was entitled to abstain from work for three months. However, only a couple of days after giving birth, the overseer ordered her to return to work. She refused to abide by his order. He beat her so hard that she became unconscious. She was taken to the hospital. The case reached the Supreme Court in Fiji. In spite of all evidence proving the overseer’s crime, he was found not guilty. Overseers were ruthless. Very few Indians could afford to take their case to court for justice. If a case was presented in the court, the ruling was always in favour of white wrongdoers. Totaram noted the outrage committed against Pathans. Arkatis sent a group of them to Fiji. Like others, they were not provided adequate food. When they protested, they were beaten and forcibly transported to different plantations. He also mentioned the case of Laliya and Ismail, a husband and wife duo. They were cheated by Arkatis and sent to Fiji at different times. Laliya met Totaram and asked for help finding her husband. He located Ismail but the authorities repatriated him to India without permitting the pair to meet. In another case, a labourer named Ramdas went to hospital for treatment of his arm’s pain. The hospital sardar assigned him tasks, which he could not perform due to his symptoms. On his refusal, the sardar and doctor beat him. Finally, the case reached the court but the decision was made in favour of the doctor. In one incident, a group of Sikhs came to Fiji. They planned to go to Argentina from there. A solicitor took money from them promising to arrange their trip to Argentina. But after receiving the funds, he declined to fulfil the promise. The Sikhs went to the court. After a long court case, they recovered only a fraction of money that the solicitor had taken from them. Totaram wrote to Mahatma Gandhi in South Africa about the appalling condition of Indians. On his request, Gandhi sent Manilal Doctor, a barrister, to fight cases in Fijian courts for Indians. There were deeply entrenched and unsurmountable biases against Indians. With connivance of colonial administration, plantation owners inflicted inhumane treatment and the judiciary validated all criminal activities against Indian workers. The whole mechanism of the indenture system was against Indians. Totaram requested Gandhi to work on abolishing the indenture system. Many of the events described by Totaram helped change public opinion in India against the indenture system. It was finally abolished in 1916. Totaram joined Sabarmati Ashram in 1922. He lived there with his wife Gangadevi. He died at the Ashram in 1947. Gandhi wrote a eulogy for him on his death describing Totaram as an ornament to the Sabarmati Ashram. —Awadhesh Sharma, web: hinduguru.com.au


Who, What, Where, When...

Tulsi Poojan 2021 by Shri Yoga Vedanta Sewa Samiti AU and NZ , 500 tulsi Plants were distributed during the Poojan

Invited guests at Gamma Education’s end of Year party at their Brisbane campus in Fortitude valley

Live entertainment while guests enjoy their special prepared lunch

Catering students of Gamma Education set out an impressive spread for the special guests

Joint birthday celebration of Suman and Tej at the shadow lounge of Jade Buddha, a fun filled night in a beautiful Brisbane Riverside venue

Rhythm India Club official launch with Pinky Singh, Usha Chandra and organisers Chandan Das and Tanvi Goel Call: (07) 3192 5188

From Left – Anu Sharma host for the show, Usha Chandra, Tanvi Goel and Umesh Chandra at Rhythm India Club function

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THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 25


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Call: (07) 3192 5188

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THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 27


Who, What, Where, When...

A packed house at Cocoon homes dinner function at Micheals Oriental restaurant

From Left Mrs Pinky Singh, Lorraine Hardgrave, Gary Hardgrave, Senator Paul Scarr and Mrs Usha Chandra at Cocoon Homes dinner function

Lively Bhangra brightens up Cocoon Homes dinner function

Umesh Chandra OAM addresses Lord Mayors multicultural roundtable members at the last meeting for 2021

Globenet Realty end of year get together at George’s Paragon Seafood restaurant on Brisbane Waterfront.

Globenet Girls ready for their night out

United Nations Association of Australia observed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Day at St John’s Cathedral on 13th December 28 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

A moving Living Christmas greeted seniors for their seniors Christmas party at City Hall

A fitting recognition for the hamartian work supporting Mahabobas’s Promise at UNAA Human rights commemoration Day.


Australian IndiaN Radio Interviews

December Interviews on Australian Indian Radio

BRISBANE, Australian Indian Radio conducts a series of interviews of community interest, Air is approached by many agencies for the interviews

conducted by Umesh Chandra OAM. Regular shows include weekly Real Estate Update, Monthly Migration Updates, Legal topic, topical community

concerns etc. The interviews can be heard on our social media channels and on our online stream. This month Australian Indian Radio , apart from

the regular shows had the following interviews . 1. Matt Loop: Head of Asia Pacific at Slack 2. Belinda Allen: Senior Economist

3. Julie Mitchell: Allianz Australia Chief General Manager, Personal Injury. If you have any topic that you would like to

discuss , Australian Indian Radio will be more than happy to get you on the show , please contact our office for further information.

If you would like to discuss about your business with Australian Indian Radio contact us at air@indianradio.net.au or call at 0430 193 715

1st Anniversary presentation of Music Junction hosted by RJ Savi

BRISBANE, Australian Indian Radio hosts a popular monthly Facebook live show “Music Junction”. Music Junction has successfully completed one year on 31st December 2022. In this episode entire team of music junction has celebrated its 1st Anniversary and introduced a new rising talent of Brisbane Neha Shah, in a show was hosted by lovely RJ Savi. Neha Shah is originally from the Gujarat State and Vadodara city from India. She migrated to Australia in 2008 and happily living with her husband and his son in Brisbane. She said in her family all members

are music lovers and her sister and grandfather also sing in back in India. She mentioned that she has been singing since she was 12 from India. She used to sing Garba every year in navratri and traditional marriage songs in Marriage functions. She has learned music from her guru Yadunath Gadre from faculty of performing arts. She has also participated in folk dance in India. In Australia Neha participates in folk songs (Garba) and Bollywood songs every year in Brisbane Navratri since 2015. She has also performed in Laxminarayan temple.

“I Believe Music is meditation and has always a been peaceful experience” Neha Shah.

The show received very favourable reviews and was appreciated by over thousands of viewers at the time of

know your rights – what you need to know when injured at work

BRISBANE Know your rights is a monthly series by Maurice Blackburn Lawyers on Australian Indian Radio, this month’s topic was your rights when injured at work. Jillian Barrett is a Principal Lawyer and Queensland Law Society Personal Injury Accredited Specialist. She

is also Maurice Blackburn’s Browns Plains regional office leader who helps people with their compensation claim and regularly visits other offices. The comprehensive interviews can be heard on Australian India Radio Facebook page and YouTube channel.

publication. All episodes can be viewed on either Australian Indian Radio’s Facebook page or YouTube channel. Australian Indian Radio invites all budding and established artists to be on the show, either with backing tracks with live musicians, it is a wonderful platform to showcase your

talent to the entire world wide audience, if you are interested please contact us to take it further, Music junction is presented on the last Sunday of the month from 6:00 PM Brisbane Australia time. If you are a singer and would like to feature in our next show Music Junction, please contact us at air@indianradio.net.au.

Aap Ki Sehat – (Your health) Exclusive to Australian Indian Radio BRISBANE, Aap Ki Sehat -Your HEALTH Program, initiated by IMA, QLD, Australia, is a monthly program hosted by Cyril Dr Fernandez produced by IMAQ and streamed live by Australian Indian Radio. Cyril graduated in 1986. He worked as a Registrar in Emergency Department of Ipswich Hospital. He obtained his Australian Fellowship in 2005. Qualifications: DAMEDesignated Aviation Medical Examiner (CASA), ACCAMAustralian Certificate of Civil Aviation Medicine (Monash University) MBBS from INDIA in 1987, FRACGP(QLD)-2005GP Call: (07) 3192 5188

Specialist- Fellow of The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (FRACGP), MemberAMA (Australian Medical Association), EducatorGP- Supervisor, Mentor, Examiner(College of GPs). Trained for Level1 Mental Health Care and FPS (Focussed Psychological Strategies),Capable of doing Minor Surgical Procedures, Skin lesion Excisions, Implanon Insertion. In the previous episodes, Cyril interviewed various GPs with their specialization in different health segments like women’s health, importance of GPs in the community, what role a

Cyril graduated in 1986. He worked as a Registrar in Emergency Department of Ipswich Hospital. He obtained his Australian Fellowship in 2005. Qualifications: DAME-Designated Aviation Medical Examiner (CASA), ACCAM-Australian Certificate of Civil Aviation Medicine (Monash University) MBBS from INDIA in 1987. GP plays as a first point of contact etc. Aap Ki Sehat features on the face book live channel of Australian Indian Radio on the first Saturday of every month and the audio only version on Australian Indian Radio on the first Sunday of every month

at 10:00AM. For more information keep following Australian Indian Radio social media. If you would like to associate with Australian Indian Radio please contact us at sales@indiantimes. com.au or call at 0430 193 715.

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THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 29


300 Tulsi Plants distributed during Tulsi Poojan Diwas 2021 in Australia

The content of this article is based on the teachings of HH Sant Shri Asaram Ji Bapu. Pujya Bapu Ji had addressed the Parliament of the World’s Religions in Chicago in September 1993, that was 100 years after Swami Vivekananda addressed the same parliament in September 1893. To save the youth who are being ruined due to the lustful festivals like valentine’s day, in 2007 Pujya Bapu Ji initiated celebrations of Matri-Pitri Pujan Diwas (Parents worship day) on 14th February. Pujya Bapu ji felt that, due to the blind imitation of Western culture

there has been a steep rise in the incidences of alcoholism, suicide, and other immoral activities, especially among the youth during the last week of December. To rescue the youth from this debauchery and denigration, Pujya Bapu Ji came up with the idea of worshipping a sacred Tulsi plant (basil). So, with a view to awaken the cultural pride of the India and to save the countrymen from mental slavery, in 2014, he initiated celebration of Tulsi poojan on 25th December. In Australia, Shri Yoga Vedanta Seva Samiti

Australia & New Zealand celebrated Tulsi Poojan Diwas in Brisbane and in Sydney. In Brisbane the event was organized in Northgate Hall where the kids performed religious activities on the stage. A religious Kahoot was played, and everyone enjoyed playing it. The winner of the 1st prize of the kahoot quiz was presented a 10-inch tablet. In Sydney the event was held in Sai Mandir Regents Park. Free Tusli Plants were distributed in Sai Mandir. During the next Tulsi Poojan Diwas in December 2022, Shri Yoga Vedanta Sewa Samiti Australia & New Zealand will be distributing 1000 Tulsi plants in Australia. What is the need for Tulsi Worship? Around 75-100 years ago, every Hindu family had at least one Tulsi Plant in the house. The wholesome volatile oil present in the plant spreads around the house. After bathing

members of the family would offer water to the Tulsi plant and eat the leaves. Women would light-up an earthen lamp during sunset and worship Tulsi like a form of deity. This protected them from many diseases. Tulsi is the only plant in the world which spreads the medicinal oil present in it to the surrounding environment through wind. The blind followers of modernisation exiled Tulsi plants from their homes resulting in a manifold increase in diseases, squabbles and unrest. During the Covid 19 pandemic, the whole world understood deeply the importance of purifying and sanitizing the environment and increasing the immunity power, but Sant Asharam Bapu had established the tradition of planting and worshiping plants like Tulsi, Neem, Peepal and Amla long ago to make the environment pure, holy and free from germs. Tulsi is not only important from a

spiritual point of view, but also plays an important role in environmental protection. Scientists have also called Tulsi, which is called the doctor of the house, as a wonderful medicine. Tulsi is antioxidant, anti-virus and antibacterial. At the time of Coivd-19, the World Health Organization has also praised Tulsi completely. May every person get the full benefits of such a glorious Tulsi and increase the health and peace in the life of the people, with the inspiration of Saint Asharam Bapu, the celebration of Tulsi Poojan Diwas was started on 25th December. Since then, this Tulsi Pujan Day is being celebrated not only in India but in many countries of the world with the inspiration of Bapu ji. On this holy day, Tulsi Poojan Yatra is taken out to teach these sanskars in the future generations of the country. According to our scriptures, for the scientific importance of festivals and to benefit the society in a realistic way, Pujya Bapu ji

has described in a simple and effective way in his Satsang literature. To listen 24X7 live divine Satsang of Pujya Bapu Ji, please search “Mangalmay live” on google, visit http:// www.ashram.org/live or search “THE SBM STUDIO” on you tube. By the Divine Inspiration of Bapu Ji, the weekly sessions of Bal Sanskar and yoga are held in Brisbane. To know more about His Divine Holiness Bapu Ji, please watch this video. https://bit.ly/2uZvJuN For more info about Bal Sanskar and yoga sessions, to get a free copy of monthly spiritual magazine RishiPrasad in your mailbox in Australia or to get free online subscription of Rishi -Prasad, please contact by email at bskamd@gmail.com or by WhatsApp/phone to Ashok Attri and Anu Attri at +61 426 834 434 & +61 405 277 802. Please read more about our Vedic culture in the next issue of Brisbane Indian Times.

The defense structure of our culture is imprisoned - Dhananjay Desai Openly speaking about the imprisonment of Sant Shri Asharam ji Bapu in one of his recent live interviews, Shri Dhananjay Desai, Founder and National President of Hindu Rashtra Sena (HRS), who is very vocal on matters related to Indian Sanatan Culture and Hinduism, has issued many sharp and stern statements concerning Sant Shri Asharam ji Bapu’s case. He clearly said, “I am a staunchly religious man. The virtuous conduct of my clan includes respecting saints, worshipping their feet and protecting the heritage of Sant parampara. In fact if the protection of saints is excluded from the conduct of my clan, it would not remain the conduct of my clan but corrupt conduct and depravity. Sanatan Dharma is in the propriety of the conduct of my clan and in every pore of my body. I cannot be a Hindu without respecting the sadhus of Sanatan Dharma. In my neighbourhood, the saints of my Sanatan Dharma are being insulted and treated unjustly. They are being framed in false rape cases. Sanatan Dharma, to which my clan belongs, is in every pore of my body, my contemplation, meditation and concentration. I cannot be a Hindu without respecting the sadhus of Sanatan Dharma. By casting aspersions on the character of a Yogi Purush like

Asharam Bapu ji, He has not been endangered, but Indian civilization, the Indian way of life and Sanatan Dharma have been endangered. Everyone knows that the girl, who accused Bapuji is from Uttar Pradesh. She said that the incident occurred in Rajasthan and registered the FIR in Delhi. What kind of case is this? Conspiracies to throttle the Constitution with the support of the Constitution itself are being carried out. To prevent them, to eliminate them, the ability to drive them out of India will not be possible by material resources alone, but by the spiritual worship of a supreme man like AsharamBapuji, by Guru’s grace. If any person causes the soldiers on the front

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line of your army to swoon or captures them, those soldiers will not be endangered; India’s border would be in danger due to their removal. In the same way AsharamBapuji is not in trouble. You are in trouble; your religion is in trouble when the protectors of your religion are imprisoned. This great man is enhancing your sadhana by offering his body as an oblation into this terrible fire sacrifice so that we may contemplate, reflect, meditate and concentrate on our religion. Bapuji teaches us Brahmacharya. Bapuji teaches us how to develop strength, vigour and radiance. Bapuji teaches us a higher class of spiritual yoga to beget a higher type of progeny. He teaches

purification of our clan. He teaches how to develop spiritual abilities. Therefore, a great man like Bapuji is the biggest obstacle in the path of the powers committed to destroy India.Those having evil intentions of breaking India know that this India cannot be destroyed until the character of a saint like Bapuji is blemished, Hindu society is made skeptical about its lineage. The Turks, Arabs, Greeks, Portuguese, Mughals, French and British could not destroy India. Now, these conspirators and proselytizers have determined to assassinate the characters of the Mahatmas of India, to create doubts about them in the Hindu mind.That is why an attempt has been made to

This great man is enhancing your sadhana by offering his body as an oblation into this terrible fire sacrifice so that we may contemplate, reflect, meditate and concentrate on our religion. Bapuji teaches us Brahmacharya. Bapuji teaches us how to develop strength, vigour and radiance. Bapuji teaches us a higher class of spiritual yoga to beget a higher type of progeny. He teaches purification of our clan. He teaches how to develop spiritual abilities. assassinate the character of Bapuji. In reality, Asaram ji Bapu is a Yoga Purusha on a spiritual plane. Indian tradition says about the Supreme Lord personified Guru, “Guru is Brahma. Guru is Vishnu. Guru is God Maheshvara. Guru alone is verily theSupreme Brahman Therefore prostrations to him (the Guru).” The best of those Gurus is the one whom

we can worship. Religion is being targeted by casting aspersions on such Mahatmas. I tell my fellow Indians that it has been eight-nine years, so wake up.If the Farmers’ Protest movement can cause the Centre to bow down, then why can’t the real Hindutva bring Dharmarashtra to India? So from today we will remove deception and delusion, and engage ourselves in the worship of the heritage of our India. We apologise at the feet of AsharamBapuji who awakened India to its full glory. What Asaram Bapuji had and has to face and bear is due to our impotence, the disgrace is on us. Asaram Bapu ji is not imprisoned; the defense system of our clan, religion and our nation is imprisoned. To get Him released is not His job; it is our clan’s responsibility. AsharamBapuji’s fight is not about Asaram Bapu ji and I am not speaking about Asharam Bapuji. I am speaking about the salvation of my clan through Asaram Bapu ji. I am speaking about the purity of my blood. I am speaking about my heritage, my tradition and the virtue of my ancestors. I request with folded hands all audiences to put in an effort to protect the saints like Asaram Bapuji in order to protect your religion, culture, tradition and for the salvation of your clan.”


NEW YEAR CELEBRATIONS AT SHREE VENKATESA DURGA TEMPLE KENMORE Shree Venkatesa Durga Temple had a ceremonious start to the 2022 New Year with festivities occurring throughout the day. The festivities began with a special 108 Sangabishekam (Abishekam with 108 right hand conches) for Sri Durga Devi with Rudram and Veda Parayanams by Vishva Hindu Parishad Brisbane Chapter. The Abishekam was followed by Maha Arathi for Sri Durga Devi, Sri Venkateswara, Sri Shiva Parvati, Sri Subramanya Swami, Sri Navagraha, Sri Hanuman and Sri Bhairava. The Vasantha Mandapa Puja for the Utsavar Sri Durga Devi was celebrated ceremoniously with Maha Arathi, Pushpanjali and Utsavam (procession). Devotees were given the opportunity to offer their own Pushpanjali following the Utsavam to receive Sri Durga Devi’s blessings to auspiciously begin the New Year. In addition to the New Years celebrations, The Temple celebrated Sri Anjaneya Jayanthi with special Abishekam performed for Sri Anjaneya followed by special Maha

Shree Venkatesa Durga Temple looks forward to the participation of the Hindu Community with the upcoming festivals. The festivals and their programmes can be found on The Temple’s Facebook and website. For further information devotees can contact Gurrukal at 0431981998 Arathi and offering of Vada Mala. Numerous devotees were able to contribute and sponsor a Vada Mala to receive protection from Sri Hanuman as we enter into the New Year. Shree Venkatesa Durga Temple looks forward to the participation of the Hindu Community with the upcoming festivals. The festivals and their programmes can be found on The Temple’s Facebook and website. For further information devotees can contact Gurrukal at 0431981998. Shree Venkatesa Durga Temple, 57A Kenmore Rd Kenmore QLD 4069, 0431981998

Kavita ji

Call: (07) 3192 5188

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THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 31


THE MIRACULOUS ISRAA AND ME’RAAJ By Ml. Nawaaz Ashrafi

Al-Israa’ & Al-Me’raaj Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds, the One Who exists without a place. To Him belong the endowments and proper commendations. May Allah raise the rank of Prophet Muhammad and his kind Al and Companions and protect his nation from what he fears for them. May the Lord of Heavens and Earth grant us the sincere intentions and guide us to the acceptable deeds. Thereafter, Allah sent the prophets as a mercy to the slaves and supported them with miracles to indicate the truthfulness of their message. Of all the prophets, our Prophet, Muhammad, was blessed with the most miracles. Al-Israa’ and al-Me’raaj are among the many miracles of Prophet Muhammad. Every year the Israa and Me’raaj is commemorated on the 27th of Rajab. The miracle of Al-Israa’ is confirmed in the Qur’an. In Surat al-Israa’, Ayah 1, Allah said: which means: [Praise be to Allah Who enabled His slave, Muhammad, to make the journey at night from Masjid al-Haram in Makkah to Masjid al-Aqsa in Jerusalem, which is surrounded by a blessed land.] This journey is also confirmed in the sahih hadith. As such, there is scholarly consensus (ijma^) Prophet Muhammad journeyed in body and soul the night of al-Isra’ from Masjid alHaram in Makkah to Masjid alAqsa in Jerusalem. Moreover, these scholars indicated the person who denies al-Isra’ is a blasphemer for belying the explicit text of the Qur’an. Before the Prophet took this night journey, the ceiling of the house in which he was staying was opened, and Jibril descended. He cut open the chest of Prophet Muhammad and washed that open area with Zamzam water. Then he emptied something from a container into the chest of the Prophet to increase his wisdom as well as the strength of his belief. This was done to prepare the Messenger of Allah for that which he had yet to see in the upper world from among the wonders of the creation of Allah. Al-Israa’ After the Prophet performed the Evening Prayer (^Isha’), Jibril came to him with a white animal, slightly larger than a donkey yet smaller than a mule. This animal was the buraq,–one of the animals of Paradise. Jibril held the buraq by his ear and told the Prophet to mount it. When the buraq was mounted, the Prophet set forth. The buraq is a very fast animal; the length of the buraq’s stride is the farthest distance it’s eye can see. The Prophet and Jibril arrived to a land with palm trees. Jibril told the Prophet to dismount and pray, so the Prophet dismounted the buraq and prayed two rak^as.

Jibril asked him, “Do you know where you prayed?” and the Prophet answered, “Allah knows best.” Jibril told him, “This is Yathrib; this is Taybah. “.” (These are two names for the city of al-Madinah.) Before the Prophet emigrated to alMadinah, it was called Taybah and Yathrib. It earned the name al-Madinah after the Prophet emigrated to it. The buraq continued with the Prophet and Jibril until they reached another place. Again Jibril told the Prophet to get down and pray. The Prophet dismounted there and prayed two rak^as. Jibril informed the Prophet of the name of that place; it was Tur Sina’. Once again the buraq took off with the Prophet and Jibril. Once again it stopped, and the Prophet dismounted and prayed two rak^as. This was in Bayt Lahm, where Prophet ^Isa (Jesus) was born. Then the buraq continued with the Messenger of Allah until they entered the city of Jerusalem. There the Prophet went to Masjid al-Aqsa. Outside was a ring used by the Messengers of Allah to tie their animals. The Prophet tied his buraq to this ring. Then the Prophet entered the masjid where Allah assembled for him all the Prophets–from Adam to ^Isa. Prophet Muhammad moved forward and led them all in prayer. This is an indication the Prophet is higher in status than all the rest of the prophets and messengers. 1- On Prophet Muhammad’s journey from Masjid al-Haram to Masjid al-Aqsa, Allah enabled him to see some of His wondrous creations. Allah enabled the Prophet to see the world (dunya) like an old woman. However, this old woman was wearing a great deal of jewelry, and in this there is an indication signifying the reality of the world. 2- Allah enabled the Prophet to see Iblis. The Prophet saw something on the side of the road which did not dare to stand in his way or speak to him. What the Prophet saw was Iblis. Originally, Iblis was a believer and lived with the angels in Paradise. When Allah ordered the angels to prostrate (sujud) to Prophet Adam, Iblis was ordered to prostrate to him as well. The angels prostrated to Adam in obedience to Allah, because angels do not disobey Allah. However, Iblis did not obey, and he objected to the order of Allah. He said, “You created me out of fire, and You created him out of clay. How do You order me to prostrate to him?” So this objection by Iblis to the order of Allah was the first blasphemy he committed. 3- On his journey, the Prophet smelled a very nice odor. He asked Jibril about this pleasant scent and Jibril informed him this good smell was coming from the grave of the woman whose duty used to be to comb Pharaoh’s daughter’s hair. This woman was a good, pious believer.

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One day, as she was combing Pharaoh’s daughter’s hair, the comb fell from her hand. At this she said, “”Bismillah. “Pharaoh’s daughter asked her, “Do you have a god other than my father?” The woman said, “Yes. My Lord and the Lord of your father is Allah.” Pharaoh’s daughter told her father what had happened. Pharaoh demanded this woman blaspheme and leave Islam, but she refused. At that, Pharaoh threatened to kill her children. He brought a great pot of water and built a great fire under it. When the water boiled, Pharaoh brought her children and started to drop them into that pot one after the other. Throughout all this, the woman remained steadfast to Islam, even when Pharaoh reached her youngest child–a little boy still breast feeding–but she felt pity for him. At that, Allah enabled this child to speak. He said to his mother, “O Mother, be patient. The torture of the Hereafter is far more severe than the torture of this life, and do not be reluctant, because you are right.” At this the woman requested Pharaoh collect her bones and the bones of her children and bury them in the same grave. Pharaoh promised her that–then dropped her into that boiling water. She died as a martyr. The good odor the Prophet smelled coming from her grave is an indication of her high status. 4- During his trip, the Prophet saw people who were planting and reaping in two days. Jibril told the Prophet, “These were the people who fight for the sake of Allah (mujahidun). “).” 5- The Prophet also saw people whose lips and tongues were clipped with scissors made of fire. Jibril told the Prophet, “These are the speakers of sedition (fitna) who call people to misguidance.” 6- He also saw a bull which exited a very small outlet, then was trying in vain to return through that small outlet. Jibril told the Prophet, “This is the example of the bad word–once spoken, it cannot be returned.” 7- The Prophet saw people grazing like animals, with very little clothing on their private parts. Jibril told the Prophet, “These are the ones who refused to pay zakat. “.” 8- The Prophet saw angels smashing some people’s heads with rocks. These heads would return to the shape they had been, and then the angels would smash their heads again–and so on. Jibril told the Prophet, “These are the ones whose heads felt too heavy to perform prayer–the ones who used to sleep without praying.” 9- On his journey the Prophet saw people who were competing to eat some rotten meat–ignoring meat that was sliced and unspoiled. Jibril told the Prophet, “These are people from your nation who leave out that which is permissible (halal), and consume that

which is forbidden ((haram). “This reference was to the fornicators, that is, the ones who left out the permissible (marriage) and committed sins (fornication). 10- Also, the Prophet saw people who were drinking from the fluid coming from the bodies of the fornicators, (water mixed with blood). Jibril indicated to the Prophet these were the ones who were drinking the alcohol which is prohibited in this world. 11- The Prophet saw people scratching their faces and chests with brass finger nails. Jibril said, “These are the examples of those who commit gossip ((ghibah). “).” Al-Me’raaj 1- After the Prophet took this night journey from Masjid al-Haram to Masjid al-Aqsa, he ascended to the upper heavens. The Prophet ascended to the heaven on stairs, called al-mirqat, in which one step is made of gold and the next of silver, and so on. These stairs are veiled from us. The Prophet ascended these stairs until he reached the first heaven. When the Prophet and Jibril arrived at the first heaven, Jibril requested the gate to be opened. The angel assigned to that gate asked Jibril, “Who is with you?” Jibril answered, “It is Muhammad.” The angel asked Jibril, “Was he dispatched? Is it time for him to ascend to the heaven?” Jibril said, “Yes.” So, the gate was opened for him, and Prophet Muhammad entered the first heaven. There, Prophet Muhammad saw Prophet Adam. To Adam’s right, the Prophet saw some bodies, and to Adam’s left, other bodies. If Adam would look to his right he would laugh, and if he would look to his left he would cry. Adam was seeing the souls of his descendants. Those on his right were his descendants who would die as believers and those on his left were his descendants who would die as non-believers. Then the Prophet ascended to the second heaven. In this second heaven was where Prophet Muhammad saw Prophets ^Isa and Yahya. ^Isa and Yahya are cousins; their mothers were sisters. They welcomed the Prophet and made supplication (du’a’) for him for good things. The Prophet ascended to the third heaven, where he found Prophet Yusuf. Prophet Yusuf was extremely handsome. Allah bestowed half the beauty on Yusuf. Yusuf received the Prophet with a warm welcome and made supplication (du’a’) for him for good things. Then the Prophet ascended to the fourth heaven, where he found Prophet Idris. Idris welcomed the Prophet and made supplication (du’a’) for him for good things. In the fifth heaven, the Prophet encountered Harun, the brother of Prophet Musa. In the sixth heaven, he encountered Prophet Musa. Each of

these Prophets received Prophet Muhammad with a warm welcome and made supplication (du’a’)’) for him for good things. Then the Prophet ascended to the seventh heaven, and that is where our Messenger saw Prophet Ibrahim. Prophet Ibrahim is the best of the prophets after our prophet, Muhammad. The Prophet saw Prophet Ibrahim with his back against al-Bayt al-Ma’mur. To the inhabitants of the skies, al-Bayt al-Ma’mur is like the Ka’bah is to us, the inhabitants of the earth. Every day 70,000 angels go there; then exit from it, and never return. The next day another 70,000 angels go, come out, and never return. This will continue until the Day of Judgment. In this, there is an indication as to the greatness of the numbers of the angels– their numbers are far more than the numbers of the humans and the jinns together. In the seventh heaven, Prophet Muhammad saw Sidrat al-Muntaha–a very big tree of sidr. Each of the fruits of this tree is as large as a big jar. The leaves of this tree are similar to the ears of the elephants. Sidrat al-Muntahais an extremely beautiful tree. It is visited by butterflies made of gold. When these butterflies gather on this tree, its beauty is beyond description. Then the Prophet ascended to what is beyond the seven skies; he entered Paradise. He saw examples of the inhabitants of Paradise and how their situation would be. He saw most of the inhabitants of Paradise are the poor people . The Prophet saw other things on the night of his ascension. He saw Malik, the angel in charge of the Hellfire. Malik did not smile at the Prophet when he saw him, and the Prophet asked why. In answer to the Prophet’s question, Jibril said, “Malik did not smile since the day Allah created him. Had he smiled for anyone, he would have smiled for you.” In Paradise, the Prophet saw some of the bounties Allah prepared for the inhabitants of Paradise. He saw the Hur ul-^In: females Allah created who are not humans or jinn. They are in Paradise and will be married to those men Allah willed them to marry. The Prophet saw the wildan ul-mukhalladun: creations of Allah who are not human, jinn, or angels. They are a very beautiful creation of Allah whose appearance is like laidout pearls. They are servants of the inhabitants of Paradise. The least in status of the People of Paradise will have 10,000 wildan ul-mukhalladun to serve him. Each one of them would carry a tray of gold in one hand and a tray of silver in the other hand. The Prophet saw the Throne (^Arsh), which is the ceiling of Paradise. The Throne is the largest creation of Allah in size;

Allah did not create anything bigger in size than it. The seven heavens and the earth in comparison to the Kursiyy, are like a ring thrown in a desert, and the Kursiyy in comparison to the Throne, is like a ring thrown in a desert. The seven heavens and the earth in comparison to the Throne are like a seed of mustard compared to the ocean. Allah created the Throne as a sign of His Power and He did not create the Throne to sit on it. Allah created the Throne to show His Power. It is carried by four angels, and on the Day of Judgment, it will be carried by eight. The Prophet said he was permitted to speak about one of these angels who carry the Throne. In describing this angel, the Prophet told us the distance between his ear lobe and shoulder is the distance a fast-flying bird would cover in 700 years. Then the Prophet ascended beyond Paradise. He reached a place where he heard the creaking of the pens used by the angels who are copying from the Preserved Tablet. It is at that location Prophet Muhammad heard the Kalam of Allah, which is an attribute of the Self of Allah. He heard the Kalam of Allah which does not resemble our speech–so it is not something that occurs bit after bit. It is not letter after letter or a word that comes after another word. Rather, it is an attribute of Allah which is eternal and everlasting. It does not resemble our attributes. The Kalam of Allah has neither silence nor interruptions. It is an attribute of Allah, and it does not resemble the attributes of the creation. The Prophet understood several things from hearing this Kalaam of Allah. He understood the obligation of the five Obligatory Prayers. At first, Allah obligated fifty prayers. When Prophet Muhammad encountered Musa, Musa told him to make supplication (du’a’) to his Lord to ease the obligation of fifty (50) prayers, because his nation could not handle that. Musa said, “I have experience with the people of Israel, and I know your nation cannot bear that.” So the Prophet asked his Lord to lessen these prayers for his people. Five prayers were eliminated. Once again, Musa told the Prophet to ask Allah to lessen the number of prayers. Allah did. Nine times the Prophet made supplication to Allah to lessen these prayers– until these prayers were lessened to five Obligatory Prayers. So Prophet Musa was a great benefit to us. Had we been obligated to pray fifty prayers a day, this would have been a difficult matter for us. From the Kalaam of Allah, the Prophet also understood that a good deed would be written for the person who intends to do a good deed, even if he did not do it. CONTD. ON PG 33


CONTD. FROM PG 32 Also, the good deed performed would be registered for he who performs it as at least ten good deeds–up to 700 good deeds. For some people, Allah would multiply the reward of their deeds more than that. Additionally, if one performs a bad deed, it is registered for him as one bad deed; yet for he who inclines towards committing a bad deed and then refrains from committing it, a good deed would be registered for him. Here one should note the difference between two matters. If a thought crossed a person’s mind about doing something sinful, and this person wavered in this thinking,

THE MIRACULOUS ISRAA...

i.e., considered whether he should do it or not, then he refrained from doing this for the sake of Allah, this is written as a good deed. However, if a person has the firm intention in his heart that he wants to commit a sin, it would be written for him as a sin, even if he does not do it. The Prophet Returns to Makkah After all these matters took place with the Prophet, he returned to the city of Makkah. Some scholars said the Prophet’s journey took about one-third of the night, i.e., his journey from Makkah to Jerusalem, then to the heavens and what is above them, and then back to Makkah

the next day the Prophet told the people what happened to him the previous night. The blasphemers belied the Prophet and mocked him, saying, “We need a month to get there and back, and you are claiming to have done all this in one night?” They said to Abu Bakr, “Look at what your companion is saying. He says he went to Jerusalem and came back in one night.” Abu Bakr told them, “If he said that, then he is truthful. I believe him concerning the news of the heavens–that an angel descends to him from the heavens. How could I not believe he went to Jerusalem and came back in a short period of time–when these are on earth?” At that, the Companion, Abu Bakr, was

called “as-Siddiq”–because of how strongly he believed in all what the Prophet said. The blasphemous people questioned the Prophet: “If you are truthful, then describe to us Masjid al-Aqsa and its surroundings.” They asked this because they knew Prophet Muhammad had never been there before the previous night. Allah enabled the Messenger to see Masjid al-Aqsa, and he described the masjid and its surroundings in exact detail. Moreover, the Prophet said, “On my way back, I saw some of your shepherds grazing their animals in a particular location. They were searching for a camel they had lost.” The Prophet continued by giving the

description of the camel. When these shepherds came back, they told their people what happened to them–precisely as the Prophet had already told them. These blasphemers admitted the Prophet’s description was exact. Despite that, they were still stubborn and rejected the faith. They did not accept Islam. Only those whom Allah willed to be guided, will be guided. The person whom Allah did not will to be guided, will not believe– regardless of how much explanation or how many proofs he is shown. The person whom Allah willed to be guided, surely he will be a believer. Many people witnessed miracles and still did not believe. Many

people witnessed the miracle of the Prophet’s splitting of the moon. Those who refused to embrace Islam said, “This is magic. Muhammad played a magic trick on our eyes.” They even asked the people of a faraway land who witnessed the moon split in two. Despite this, they still did not believe. They said, “The magic of Muhammad is powerful; it even reached the faraway lands!” This was their response to witnessing a miracle–instead of believing and becoming Muslims. We ask Allah that we would all die as Muslims. We ask Allah to bestow on us the bounty of entering Paradise without torture. And Allah knows best.

The 6TH of Rajab marks the annual Urs celebration of THE SULTAN OF HIND, HAZRAT KHWAJA GHAREEB NAWAZ (RA) Khwaja Ghareeb Nawaz (ra) was a great mystic, an outstanding preacher, and an inspired man, an erudite scholar and a great poet and writer. He was the perfect representation of the Holy Prophet Muhammad.(s) He was a true Saint amongst the Saints who are an inspiration and doorways to God Almighty during these desperate times. Let us read about this great personality in few words: The name of Khuwaja Ghareeb Nawaz is Hassan Chishti Ajmayri. He was born in 1142 (537 H) at Sanjar in Saijistan or Seestaan in

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a prestigious and educated family. (Iqtibas-ul-Anwaar, pp. 345) His famous titles include Mu’eenuddin, Ghareeb Nawaz, Sultan-ul-Hind and Atta-eRasool. (Mu’een-ul-Hind Hazrat Khuwajah Mu’eenudin Ajmayri, pp. 20) Like a true mystic Khwaja Ghareeb Nawaz spent most of his life traveling and acquiring knowledge and in the company of the great Saints of his time. He met with his Spiritual Guide (Murshid) Hazrat Khwaja

Usman Harooni when he was in his early twenties and made the Spiritual Contract (Bai’ah) with him. He traveled and acquired much spiritual benefit from his Murshid. His travels also took him to Lahore where he visited the tomb of Hazrat Shaykh Ali Hujweri famous as Hazrat Daata Ganj Bakhsh . He also travelled Syria, Baghdad and Kirman, etc., for gaining knowledge. During the visit of Haramayn he was blessed with the sainthood of India from the blessed court of Risalat and was ordered to serve Islam in India. (Sayr-ul-Iqtaab, pp. 142)

With his good manners, good character and speech, he propagated Islam in this region. Hundreds of thousands of people embraced Islam after being impressed to him. How good his character was can be seen in this story: Once, a disbeliever came with the intention of killing Sayyiduna Khuwajah Ghareeb Nawaz holding a dagger in the armpit. He sensed his intention through his spiritual intellect. When the person approached closer, Sayyiduna Khuwajah Ghareeb Nawaz exclaimed, ‘Put your task into action, I

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am present in front of you.’ Having heard these words, that person started trembling. He took out the dagger, cast it away and threw himself at the feet of Sayyiduna Khuwajah Ghareeb Nawaz . He repented earnestly and became Muslim. (Mirat-ul-Asraar, pp. 598) Through reformation and preaching, he prepared such a group of students and Khulafa that carried out the great duty of serving Islam everywhere in Pakistan and India (subcontinent). He also carried out the duty of serving Islam and reforming people

through his writings and books. In his books, one can find the mention of Anees-ul-Arwah, Kashful Asraar, Ganj-ul-Asraar and Deevan-e-Mu’een. (Mu’een-ul-Hind Hazrat Khuwajah Mu’eenudin Ajmayri, pp. 103 - 106) Khuwaja Ghareeb Nawaz approximately spent 45 years serving Islam in India. Finally, this fountain of wisdom, knowledge and guidance departed this world on 6th Rajab 627 H in Ajmer Sharif (Rajasthan, India). His luminous shrine is situated in Ajmer Shareef.

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HAPPY NEW YEAR

Pastor Suresh Dass Joseph josephdass@optusnet.com.au

Dear reader, happy New Year to you and welcome to 2022. Like so many of us, you may have been through many setbacks, challengers and faced difficulties that you want to leave behind you. In the past year, Covid 19 was in the news almost daily, then the lockdowns, social distancing, the vaccinations, and the rise of the third wave of virus, i.e., Omicron. In Isaiah 43: God says, "forget the former things, do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing. Now it springs up. Do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the dry ground." This new year presents new opportunities, new reasons to give thanks to God, and new opportunities to serve Him. The above scripture talks about negative things like dry ground and wilderness.

For some of us, this means the company you had worked for had to let you go; people let you down or, the pandemic caused changes that you did not see coming. Some of these pains can cause you to live upset, blaming others, and carrying past offenses upon your shoulders. One of the best things you can learn to do is let it go. In the scriptures, we read (Genesis chapters 3941) about Joseph, who was

betrayed by his brothers, falsely accused, and put in jail, and became the prime minister of Egypt after thirteen years of mistreatment. Joseph knew that he could not carry the baggage of past hurts and offenses and successfully lead the nation of Egypt. So when his brothers came to him and began to ask for forgiveness, Josephs’ answer was simply that God was still working through the bad situations to bring about

good for all of them. Here are 3 things we can learn from Joseph. 1- You must realise that some things and some people are only a part of your history and not your destiny. My question is, is there something you need to leave behind? A hurt, a bad attitude, an area that you're compromising in. Don't bring that into the new year. Don't let them continue to hurt you by constantly thinking about them. If

you're dwelling on the past, you're going to miss "the new things" God wants to do. Say goodbye to failure; this is a new day. Say goodbye to guilt; you're forgiven. Say goodbye to what didn't work out; God has something better. Make the resolution that says, "I am not getting stuck on what held me back in 2021. Just like Joseph, I know God has a new chapter for me in 2022--a chapter filled with blessings, favour, and victory!"

- if you are breathing, it's never too late to start a new beginning. Josephs’ brothers planned to kill him. But they spared him and sold him to the Ishmaelites. The Ishmaelites escorted him to Egypt, where he became the Prime Minister! It would help if you looked forward to new beginnings. God plans to increase you, open new doors before you, and take you places that you've never imagined. He has something big in store for this year. He's already planned out big breaks, significant opportunities, and big ideas for you. He is doing a new thing! - Be willing to let go of relationships limiting you to grow higher. 2022 is your year to rise higher in your relationships, health, finances, and most of all, in your walk with God. As you draw near to Him, He will draw near to you. Receive it by faith and declare, "Yes, God, this is for me today. I know You're a big God, and You have something new coming my way in 2022!" When the king of Egypt had a dream, which no one could interpret, so they called Joseph. Joseph said, “It’s not in me to interpret your dream, but God can.” God did it for Joseph and He can do it for you! God bless you. —Ps Joseph Dass

One Good News 2022… Jesus said “Arise and Shine…”

Key Scripture:

Romans 8:38-39 (NLT) And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth be-low— indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. Dear Reader, We are committed to bring you the good news in 2022 and beyond. Our theme and message simple and clear. It is to make God real and personal. And to reveal God very real person. So you can know and relate to Him. As I have come to understand that God is not an object or an image or im-agination of human mind. God is a living and loving person. We find this amazing revelation in the pages of The Holy Bible. As you search your heart and seek the truth with a humble heart God is committed to reveal

himself to you. You don’t need any other person or man to convince of this matter. To be humble means we need to put aside our pride, ego and all knowing attitude. Like a little child with a pure heart and mind we can approach God. Then we need to repent of our pride and misunderstanding of God’s nature and character. God is committed to make your new year as a good year. Filled with hope and health. We can understand this truth by the faith in God’s word. The world enters the new year with fear of new viruses. But we need under-stand how we can defeat the fear. When our faith, trust

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and belief increase in God, the fear disappears. Like the dark shadow that was hanging around us; when the Light of God appears it will instantly disperse the darkness. There is only one way to make your new year a good year. You need to know the true source of Good News and embrace it into your heart. If your past years were filled with pain and disappointments, don’t look back. Look to the Good News, It is here and it is waiting for the humble and sincere seeker of God; Author of life has given you an unfailing invi-tation to a genuine relationship. Like Paul the apostle, I am absolutely convinced

receiving God’s love is the most significant purpose of our life. No religion or tradition can give an unconditional love, and a supreme love offered by Jesus Christ. “Maha Bali” means Supreme (Great) Sacrifice, who is that person in the history of humanity has done this sacrifice? If you may search whole universe for a story, it will ultimately bring you to the Good News of Jesus. Jesus not only talked and showed love to all humanity and ultimately demonstrated His love as “Maha Bali”. Why? To pay for the sins of all humanity. For everyone on earth

have sinned, and fallen short of God’s glorious standards (Romans 3:23). Not a single person on this planet ever lived or living can stand and say I am pure and holy before God. For the wages of sin is death, but free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:23). But the Good News is here, for you and me. Nothing can come between you and God’s love, including death and demons. All your fears and worries can be turned to simple faith and worship. No power in the whole universe has the capacity to pull you out of God’s grip. Do you want to experience

such a perfect love and security? Millions of dollars or millions of good work can't earn you God’s love. All you need is simple and humble heart which is ready pray and be healed by power of Christ’s love To know Jesus as The Lord mean to know author of your life. And to walk in His ways mean journey through this life by faith in His Word and in His finished work on the Cross. He is the most loving person you will ever know on this planet. Therefore, we invite you to pray this with a sincere heart; “Dear Father God, today I thank you for your word that has touched my heart. I repent of my wrongs and I confess with my mouth ‘Jesus is Lord’ and I believe in my heart that Jesus died for my sins, God raised Jesus from the dead for my Mukti (Salvation). Now help me to know Jesus more and more so that I can grow in the knowledge of your grace and mercy. Teach me your ways so that I can be person who will learn to honour you and learn to love each other. Amen. Please email to us your encounter experience, so we can help you to grow in the understanding your Creator and Redeemer. navig8grace@gmail.com


Morth Smooni Jacobite Syrian Orthodox Church Celebrated ECUMENIAL CAROL NIGHT

BURPENGARY Morth Smooni Jacobite Syrian Orthodox Church celebrated Ecumenical carol night on 18th of December 2021 at Burpengary community centre. Mr Terry Young MP local member for Longman, Queensland inaugurated the event by lighting up. Mr Yeldo Mathew

welcomed everyone to the programme. Father Bishoy wasseff delivered the Christmas messages. Church Vicar, Father Thomas Puthiyamadathil emphasised the importance of the program. Program convenor Bijoy Kuriakose delivered a vote of thanks to everyone. Twelve different teams performed during

the evening. Total of 500 people were in attendance; dinner was served to all attendees. The Syrian Orthodox Church believes that the Holy Bible, which comprises of the Old Testament and the New Testament, is the divine word of God. Its Fathers laboured in translating the Holy Scriptures into Syriac

since the very dawn of Christianity. These Syriac translations of the Bible are the oldest and most ancient in any language. Further, the Syriac New Testament is quite unique for it presents the teachings of our Lord in an Aramaic dialect (Syriac) which is akin and would have been mutually comprehensible

with the Palestinian dialect of Aramaic in which Christ taught. Since the translation of the Bible into Syriac started as early as the first century, the Syriac version preserves the very ancient renditions of the original texts. The winners of Raffle Ticket Lucky Dip Draw were 1. Apple iPad- Ticket

no.1648, Nintendo SwitchTicket no. 1819, 3. Google Nest Cam- Ticket no 1397, 4. Apple Air pods- Ticket no 0051,5. Fuji Instax MiniTicket no 1707. The colourful program was professionally arranged, North Brisbane Real Estate agency Globenet Realty was one of the proud sponsors of the event.

“We wish you all a Happy New Year,” 2022

POST CHRISTMAS MESSAGE FROM PASTER JOSEPH DASS

BRISBANE This year’s Christmas celebration has been a challenging one. With the spread of Coronavirus, the lockdowns, quarantines, self-isolation, restrictions in our travel movements, yet it was time to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Amid Covid restrictions, wearing of masks, and keeping people apart, Christmas still came with this hope that we can meet together, sing together, eat and fellowship together. A quick reflection towards our celebration shows that people love to gather, give, and receive gifts and eat meals together. The Christmas trees and lights went up, businesses held their Christmas parties, and the Churches celebrated with candles, nativity scenes, Christmas plays, and food. Looking at those smiling faces, the joy and happiness remind us that not only are we celebrating Christmas, but Christmas celebrates us! Christmas is also a time to close a chapter in the book and go on to the next chapter. A time to let go of the old and start something new. It could be new ideas, plans, and relationships. This is a time to move forward with this Call: (07) 3192 5188

Last month we were able to celebrate birth of Jesus Christ. The Presence Church [Hindi] Brisbane, conducted different programme. We were privileged to have Mr Umesh Chandra in the celebration. He took time out of his busy schedule and spent few hours with us. His encouraging words were appreciated. The whole programme was based on accepting Jesus into your heart, as your Saviour. Thereafter, Pastor John Thomas [Honey], gave a powerful message about Christmas. The message was, based on The Bible verse, Luke 2:11, “ For unto you, is born this day in the city of David, a Saviour which is Christ the Lord.”.

Pastor Thomas, emphasised , Christmas and New year is celebrated every year, the day is not important, whereas, Jesus taking birth in you heart is more important. Jesus wants us to be the followers of Him. He is the Saviour, Peacemaker and Healer As we all are facing an uncertainity among the

hope of a better tomorrow, the dawn of a new and bright season, as we read in the scriptures where God says, “I am doing a new thing, so can you perceive it.” On behalf of my family,

spread of COVID, in our country and all over the world, we pray to Jesus, for a complete healing. May God Bless and keep you all safe. If you are looking for a Hindi Church, contact:Presence Church Brisbane [Hindi] Pastor Ashok Kumar 0406577423; Pastor John Thomas 0402551220

our church family, I would like to pray for you and your families for a powerful and fantastic 2022. God bless you! Happy New Year! Ps Joseph & Pratima Dass www.indiantimes.com.au

THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 35


36 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022


Queensland Telugu Association celebrates annual Karthika Vanabhojanalu & Christmas Lunch SEVENTEEN Miles Rock, Queensland Telugu Association celebrated our annual Karthika Vanabhojanalu & Christmas Lunch on Sunday, 12th December 2021 at Rocks Riverside Park, Seventeen Miles Rocks. The day was bright, sunny and breezy making the picnic very enjoyable. Thanks to our QTA team, we got a great shelter for the picnic situated right beside the water park and surrounded by the big trees for shade. The picnic started at 10 am with the members arriving and greeting each other. The excitement of greeting known faces and making some new acquaintances kept the tempo high. The first game of the day was in line with the Indian tradition of ‘Gully Cricket’. The setting was serene and green with heaps of room for some great sixers which we witnessed from many of the members. At the same time, small kids enjoyed the free face painting done by own creative artists Pavani Gandra garu and Kiranmayee Earanti garu. Cricket was followed by an invigorating and exciting treasure hunt. The theme of the hunt was to highlight the current global crisis of protecting our Mother Earth. The moderator of the game was Srinivas Ramadani garu. The treasure hunt allowed participants of all ages to collaborate and investigate the nature-orientated clues. In addition, the five elements: fire, water, earth, air and sky (space) were explored as they are essential to nurture the wonderful nature around us. It was heartwarming to see how well our young members were in tune with these themes. The treasure hunt ended with some very smart answers to

Thanks to our QTA team, we got a great shelter for the picnic situated right beside the water park and surrounded by the big trees for shade. The picnic started at 10 am with the members arriving and greeting each other. The excitement of greeting known faces and making some new acquaintances kept the tempo high.

the questions our moderator had, and the winning team was applauded by one and all for their tremendous efforts. The Lemon and Spoon game was then organized and played by all the ladies in the group. There were three qualifying rounds and the winners versed each other in the finals. The comical fails and falls in the races sent waves of laughter through the entire group. The competitive nature of our Indian women made it a very funny yet memorable experience. Mouth-watering dishes were the biggest highlight of the event. All the families who joined in brought with them their favorite dish to share and what a spread it turned out to be! All the attendees sat together on green lawns with the friends and family as they ate the delicious food. Thanks to all the people who brought the appetizing food and made the event a memorable one. A Painting competition

commenced after lunch for the younger members of the group, organized by Kiranmayee Earanti garu. The competition was once again based on the theme of the day, Nature. The young

members participating were organized into 3 groups aged 0-7, 7-14 and 14+. The young minds put color on paper and showed their view of the world around them. The young artists brought their artistic visions to life by including trees, rainbows, flowers, honeybees, Mount Everest and the Go Green Concept. The winners were judged by a wonderful panel of 4 Judges which included our QTA Treasurer ever smiling Manju Segu garu, TAG Inc cultural secretary Anjani Sunkhishela garu, Seema Cronin ji who joined us from Gold Coast and the wonderful Devika Indla’s mum, Geetha Dasari garu, who is currently visiting from India. The winners were awarded a trophy to celebrate their achievement and all participants were given a personalized participation certificate. Another highlight of the day was the visit from our resident Santa, Sudershan Kanthakadi garu who brought in the Christmas cheer and gifts for all the kids. Kids also enjoyed cake cutting with Santa by singing Christmas carols. All the members shared the Christmas cake & delicious Indian sweets and set the tone for the holiday season. The picnic ended with lots of smiles, happiness and promises to meet again soon. We thank our committee and their ever-supporting family members for organizing such a memorable event. A big thanks to everyone who attended and made such a wonderful experience for all. We wish our far and wide Telugu community in Brisbane, Australia, India and across the world a very merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2022. Jai Hind. Jai Telugu Thalli.

Successful Year of Bal Vikash – Gayatri Mandir, Boondall Jai Shri Ram It has been a successful and rewarding year for Gayatri Mandir to run Bal Vikash after tumultuous 2020 with Covid lockdown and lots of uncertainty. Bal Vikash in Sanskrit means “Blossoming of the Child”, Child development incorporates, physical growth as well as intellectual, language, emotional and social development. Whilst these aspects are often considered separately, in reality each influence all of the others. Hindu Society of Queensland has a vision to motivate every parent to fulfil the cultural and spiritual need of the child so that our children of today become better citizens and leaders of tomorrow. According to our Bal Vikash teacher Mrs Nirmala Shandil, “I am grateful and thankful that I have been given the opportunity to Call: (07) 3192 5188

teach our kids, teaching is the noblest of profession”. It involves sowing the seeds of selfless love, showering and sharing of love and passion of teaching, a teacher shapes and transforms the rising generation into a selfconfident, self-reliant and provides the tools of inner strength and wisdom. Classes for 2021 resumed in January with 16 regular students between term 1 to 4. Students have been learning the building blocks of Hindi language, consonants, vowels, they are able to build words, prayers, mantras and bhajans. The students have performed skits and recited prayers and bhajans in Ram Naumi and Krishan Janmashtami. Bal Vikash also creates a social setting and a platform for the children and the parents to create a bond and build long lasting friendship. Last day of Bal Vikash was on 5 December 2021, each student received a report

Mandir. Upcoming Events 26 January: Gayatri Mandir 31st Anniversary – Hindu Society of Queensland will be proudly celebrating its 31st Anniversary. Please come along with your family and friends and celebrate the milestone with raising of the hanuman chaanda and hawan. Prasad and Mahaprasad will be provided Program begins at 9.30am. Sundarkand and Triodashi is held every month at the mandir, for details and sponsorship please kindly visit our Facebook page. Regular updates will be sent to all devotees via Facebook and text messages. card with a summary of their progress. Christmas party was organised by students’ parents and the Committee. There was lots of food and Christmas goodies for the children, they played games and had lots of fun. Each

student received Christmas presents, it was joyful to watch the kids go home with a big grin. Bal Vikash will resume on 6 February 2022; classes are open to students willing to learn Hindi language and

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Culture. Please feel free to contact Mrs Nirmala Shandil on 0466 436 964 or the President Dr Jai Ram on 0414 406 450 for all enrolments or alternatively obtain enrolment forms directly from the Gayatri

Stay Connected with Hindu Society of Queensland Facebook: Hindu Society of Qld Phone: (07) 38653164 Address: 178 Lyndhurst Rd, Boondall QLD

THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 37


3 JeM terrorists killed in Budgam encounter Mir, who was active since December 2020, was involved in the killing of police officer inspector Parvaiz Ahmad on June 22 last year, said police. Three Jaish-eMuhammad (JeM) terrorists were killed in central Kashmir’s Budgam district in an overnight operation with security forces, said an official Friday. With this, the toll of terrorists killed in the past seven days has touched 11. A team of officials from the police, the army and the CRPF launched a joint operation after they got a tip-off about the presence of terrorists at Zolwa

NEWS UPDATES AAP members create ruckus in Chandigarh Municipal Corporation as BJP wins mayoral election

Kralpora Chadoora of Budgam. “One of the terrorists has been identified as Waseem Mir of Nowgam in Srinagar. Based on initial investigations and documents recovered, the other two terrorists appear to be foreign nationals, however, their exact identification is being ascertained. Three AK-56 rifles were recovered from the site,” said inspector general of police (IGP) Viijay Kumar. Mir, who was active since December 2020, was involved in the killing of police officer inspector Parvaiz Ahmad on June 22

last year, said police. “The terrorists fired indiscriminately upon the joint search party. The

Weekend curfew imposed in Delhi, here's all you need to know The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has imposed a weekend curfew in the city to contain the spread of the Covid-19 virus. As per the orders, government offices, barring essential services, in the city will have to implement work from home for employees and private offices will operate at 50 per cent capacity.

Councillors of the Aam Aadmi Party created a ruckus inside the assembly hall of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation after the Bharatiya Janata Party won the mayor elections

Delhi likely to see 20,000 new Covid cases today: Satyendar Jain Delhi health minister Satyendar Jain said that the city is likely to record over 20,000 Covid-19 cases today and the positivity rate is expected to be around 19%, reports PTI. Also, he said that no Omicron-related deaths were recorded in Delhi. Of the nine people who died on Friday, most had comorbidities, he added.

PM Modi security mishap in Punjab: NIA nominates officer to secure, seize records related to visit

The National Investigation Agency nominated IGP Santosh Rastogi to assist the Registrar General of Punjab and the Haryana High Court to secure and seize records related to PM Modi's visit to Punjab on January 5 from state and central agencies. NIA DG issued an order regarding the same on Friday. However, there will be no probe, the agency said

security forces retaliated in return leading to an encounter. Later on, the CRPF also joined the

Assembly election schedule to be announced by ECI at 3.30pm today Assembly elections are due in Goa, Punjab, Manipur, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh this year. The schedule for these elections will be announced by the Election Commission at a press conference today. The election Commission of India (ECI) will announce the schedule for assembly elections in Goa, Punjab, Manipur, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh today, news agency ANI reported. The announcement is expected to be made at a press conference at 3.30pm, ANI further said. Assembly elections in five states - Goa, Manipur, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand - are expected to be held in the next few months. While the term of the current Uttar Pradesh assembly is ending in May, those of the other four assemblies are ending on different dates in March. Two more states Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat - will witness polling towards the end of the year. These election are touted to be crucial, not only for the ruling dispensation - Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Uttar Pradesh, Goa, Manipur and Uttarakhand,

38 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

and Congress in Punjab - but also for the challengers, like the Samajwadi Party (SP) in UP and Trinamool Congress and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Goa. The BJP is campaigning aggressively to dethrone the Congress in Punjab, where a protest against farm laws metamorphosed into nationwide agitation and forced the Centre to announce a rollback. Fastpaced developments in the northern state in the past few months has turned the electoral battle into an interesting one. Uttar Pradesh is India’s most populous state and arguably most crucial politically. With a population over 200 million cutting across caste and communities, and 80

Lok Sabha seats and 403 assembly seats, the state wields disproportionate power in the country’s politics. Having roots in the state propels a political party or leader to the national arena because no other state comes close in terms of political heft. In Goa, the fight is as much between the BJP and the Congress as it is between the AAP and the Trinamool Congress to emerge as the new Opposition alternative; in Uttarakhand, the incumbent BJP appears to be in trouble after changing two chief ministers in a year, and in Manipur, the Congress will seek to wrest power from the BJP in a state where it emerged as the singlelargest party only to see its lawmakers defect.

operation,” said IGP Kumar. “The joint team ensured the evacuation of all civilians to the safer places. Besides, to avoid any collateral damage due to darkness, the operation was suspended during night hours and was resumed in the wee hours of Friday. During the encounter an army officer sustained a minor splinter injury,” he said. “Terrorist Mir was a categorised terrorist and was booked in several terror crime cases. He was also involved in grenade attack on a CRPF bunker near Aali Masjid Chowk at Eidgah Srinagar in which a

civilian and a police officer were injured. He had also been brainwashing and motivating the youth of Central Kashmir to join terror folds,” said Kumar. On Wednesday, three terrorists, including a foreigner associated with JeM, who according to police was also an expert in making vehicle-borne IEDs was killed after an encounter in Pulwama district. On Tuesday, forces killed two local terrorists at Okey village in Kulgam district who according to police were associated with Lashkar-e-Taiba/The Resistance Force.

Miss India Wins Miss Universe 2021

Miss India Harnaaz Sandhu earned the prestigious crown in Eilat, Israel, on Sunday after beating out the runnersup, Miss Paraguay and Miss South Africa. There's new royalty in the Miss Universe world! On Sunday, Miss India Harnaaz Sandhu was officially named Miss Universe 2021. Sandhu, 21, beat out 79 other contestants from various countries and territories — including runner-up Miss Paraguay Nadia Ferreira and second runner-up Miss South Africa Lalela Mswane — to claim the prestigious title. Sandhu was presented the crown by her successor, Miss Universe 2020 Andrea Meza, before taking her first walk as the new Miss Universe on the stage in Eilat, Israel. A strong advocate for women's empowerment, Sandhu is actor who draws inspiration from Priyanka Chopra. In her spare time, she enjoys yoga, dancing, cooking, horse riding and playing chess. Prior to the winning moment, the 70th annual Miss Universe competition, which was hosted by Steve Harvey, featured a swimsuit and evening gown segment, as well as an interview portion for each of the contestants. Israeli singer and international pop star Noa Kirel also delivered a performance at the pageant, which had a focus

on the climate crisis as part of a green agenda that corresponds with the values​​ of Israel. The competition was a historic one, as it marked the first time that a delegate from the United Arab Emirates has ever competed and the first time in over four decades that Miss Universe Morocco has returned to the pageant. Miss Universe 2021 was held seven months after Meza, 27, earned the 2020 crown this past May. Her win came about five months later than usual because the annual pageant went on a hiatus due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In a statement prior to Sunday's competition, Israeli Tourism Minister Yoel Razvozov said he was thrilled to welcome Miss Universe to his country, even with the ongoing COVID concerns. "Despite the challenges the COVID-19 pandemic placed in our path, we knew how to maintain the balance between health and the economy, to bring tourism back to Israel," Razvozov said. "We needed to create tourism anchors that will promote and present Israel to the world as a vaccination nation that invites tourists to visit. The Miss Universe pageant is, without [a] doubt, an important and significant anchor of this plan." Sunday's show also marked the first time that Harvey, 64, returned to the Miss Universe competition since 2019.


Indian Council for Cultural Relations opens Admission for Academic Year 2022-23

NEW DELHI Mission is pleased to inform that Indian Council for Cultural Relations is announcing 100 scholarships slots under ICCR Scholarship Scheme for Indian Culture for pursuing study of Indian Culture such as dance, music, theatre, performing arts, sculpture, Indian languages, Indian cuisine etc. at Indian Universities/ Institutes for

the academic year 2022-

23. The applications from the interested international students for academic year 2022-23 will be invited online through ICCR's A2A Scholarship Portal: http:// a2ascholarships.iccr.gov.in/, which will be operational from 25th January 2022. Also, a 'Timeline for the admission process' has been set which is given below for reference.

25 January 2022

Opening of ICCR A2A Portal for admissions.

30 April 2022

Last date of application to be submitted by students

31 May 2022

Last date of Universities to inform the decision (if confirmed, intimation to Missions; if rejected, intimation to students).

30 June 2022

Last date for allocating scholarship and generating Offer letters by Indian Mission abroad

15 July 2022

Last date of acceptance by students.

22 July 2022

Based on the number of acceptances in the first round (if acceptances are less than the scholarship seats allocated) Indian Mission to offer scholarship to other students who were not considered in the first round.

30 July 2022

Second round students to convey their acceptances.

For more information please contact https://iccr.gov.in/contact/contact-us

Call: (07) 3192 5188

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THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 39


FOCUS ON FIJI Flood warnings for parts of Ba, Rakiraki & Tavua with severe flood alerts for low lying areas near major rivers in Western Viti Levu Remain on high alert and take the necessary precautions if you live in low lying and flood-prone areas as it continues to rain in parts of the country. The Weather Office says you should expect more rain and possible flooding from tomorrow. A flood warning is now in force for low lying areas near Rakiraki Town, Tavua at Nasivi and Ba at FSC. There is a severe flood alert in force for low lying areas near major rivers in

Western Viti Levu. The rivers at

risk

of

flooding are the Tuva River, Kubuna River, Nawaka River,

Nadi River, Sabeto River, Vuda River, Vitogo River, Teidamu River, Ba River, Nasivi River, Yaqara River, Nakauvadra River, Penang River and Elevuka Creek. Please prepare and remain on high alert if you live near these major rivers in Western Viti Levu. The Weather Office says currently water levels at all these rivers are below the flood alert threshold but with more rain expected the risk of river banks breaking and flooding is high.

Current increase in COVID-19 cases represents the beginning of the third wave of COVID-19 in Fiji - Dr Fong Permanent Secretary for Health Doctor James Fong says their assessment is that the current increase in COVID-19 cases represents the beginning of the third wave of COVID-19 in Fiji. He says this may be a resurgence of the endemic Delta variant however they are also working on the assumption that the Omicron variant is already here and is being transmitted within the community. Doctor Fong adds they expect that genomic sequencing results of COVID-19 positive samples sent overseas will confirm this in due course. The Permanent Secretary for Health further says should this wave be driven by the Omicron variant, based on what they are seeing overseas, they should expect a large number of cases and they will also expect that infections will occur in vaccinated persons and those who have

previously been infected with the Delta variant. He adds it is important to remember that those who are vaccinated or had booster doses are far less likely to become sick enough to require hospitalization. Doctor Fong says the main focus of the vaccination program is to prevent severe illness and death which will also help to limit the strain on our medical services. He adds the three divisional hospitals are reporting an increase in

positive cases admitted to the hospital, however, none of the cases so far are presenting with COVIDrelated medical problems. Doctor Fong says they are being admitted for other medical conditions and are testing positive during mandatory testing for all admissions to the hospital. He stresses that the overall goal of the Health Ministry COVID-19 pandemic response and recovery has always been to minimize severe illness and deaths. He says this goal remains, along with reducing severe societal disruption as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the priority is the promotion of individual COVID safe measures which is vaccination, masking, physical distancing, avoiding crowds and hand hygiene followed by settings-based measures such as social gathering restrictions, indoor capacity

restrictions, ventilation, and curfews. Doctor Fong further adds they intend to avoid population blanket measures, like lockdowns, as much as possible as, almost two years into the pandemic, such measures are damaging to the community on many different levels and in our own recent experience, have limited value in controlling the spread of COVID-19 in Fiji. He says with more than 91% of adults in Fiji vaccinated, plus added immunity expected due to the large number of people that were infected during the last wave on Viti Levu, we are no longer the COVIDnaive population that we were before. Doctor Fong adds the immunity that has been built through vaccination, and prior infection, is expected to have a significant impact on reducing severe disease in this next wave.

Flooding is our main concern – NDMO The National Disaster Management Office says they have started to receive reports of flooding in the Western Division and are asking the public to limit travel and refrain from unnecessary movement for their own safety. NDMO Director Vasiti Soko says flooding is one of their main areas of concern. She says data released by the Fiji Police Force between 2017 and last year show that 17 people drowned during an event of a natural disaster. Soko adds majority of these incidents involved people being swept away by strong currents while trying to cross flooded rivers, creeks and streams during natural disasters.

She is also calling on those living in landslide-prone areas to take precautionary measures. Soko stresses that with already highly saturated soil as a result of heavy rain in the last few days, there are also high chances of landslides occurring.

Families in the West and North prepare for adverse weather conditions

With flood warnings and alerts issued for parts of the country, families in the Western and Northern Divisions have started to prepare for the next few days. Tuluk, Ba resident, Sonal Kumar says they started experiencing more rain from this morning. She says they currently do not have power supply and have stored water despite having access to boreholes. Kumar says she has spoke to some of her friends who have moved livestock to higher ground. Korotari, Labasa resident, Mohammed Akbar Khan says the weather does not look too favourable right now. He says there are about a hundred livestock and

vegetable farmers in Korotari. Khan adds farmers have moved their livestock to higher grounds while vegetable farmers have avoided farming close to the river during the rainy season. A flood warning is now in force for low lying areas near Rakiraki Town, Tavua at Nasivi and Ba at FSC. There is a severe flood alert in force for low lying areas near major rivers in Western Viti Levu. The rivers at risk of flooding are the Tuva River, Kubuna River, Nawaka River, Nadi River, Sabeto River, Vuda River, Vitogo River, Teidamu River, Ba River, Nasivi River, Yaqara River, Nakauvadra River, Penang River and Elevuka Creek.

Kissun to send children to school despite reservations Police interview a few people Despite his concerns and reservations due to the third wave of COVID-19, Napolioni Ajay Kissun will send his three children to school next week. The Tomuka, Lautoka resident said if cases continued to rise, he would rethink his decision. “If the cases continue to go up, then I think the Government should do something about it,” Mr Kissun said. “I will be sending my three children back to school next week, but I am making sure they are protected. “They all go with their own sanitisers and masks,

and I’ve been assured by the school that they are putting in

40 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

all the COVID-safe measures. “My children know about

all the COVID measures they need to follow. “My eldest is vaccinated and if my young ones get the opportunity to get the vaccine, I will also encourage them to get it. “So I hope that is enough for them to be able to be safe in school.” He said they had been committed to their children’s education over the past eight months since school closed in April 2021. “It is very worrying and I am hoping that Government will do the right thing if cases keep rising.” Students from kindergarten and Year 7 begin classes next Monday.

about alleged Rakiraki homicide

Police have interviewed a few people in Volivoli in Rakiraki about the alleged homicide case on Thursday. They say right now they are trying to gather as much information as they can. Four bodies were recovered on Thursday morning while one person is admitted in the hospital. One of the deceased, 48-year-old Ranjeev Kumar was bedridden. His family has told fijivillage that Kumar was living with his wife’s family in Volivoli. The family says Kumar’s

wife is admitted in critical condition in the Lautoka Hospital.


Balkrishna Doshi to receive 2022 Royal Gold Medal for Architecture The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) is pleased to announce that Balkrishna Doshi will receive the Royal Gold Medal 2022, one of the world’s highest honours for architecture. Given in recognition of a lifetime’s work, the Royal Gold Medal is approved personally by Her Majesty The Queen and is given to a person or group of people who have had a significant influence on the advancement of architecture. It has been awarded since 1848 and will be presented to Balkrishna Doshi at a special ceremony in 2022. Balkrishna Vithaldas Doshi has been practising architecture and designing and delivering outstanding buildings and places for over seventy years. Trained in Mumbai he began practice in Europe working closely with Le Corbusier. He returned to India in his late twenties to help supervise Corbusier’s projects in Ahmedabad before setting up his own studio to work collaboratively with Louis Kahn on the Indian Institute of Management campus, also in Ahmedabad. His personal influence as a practitioner and educator

Balkrishna Doshi © Pratik Gajjar has grown from there. Through his teaching and his practice, he has helped define the direction of architecture in India and much of the adjacent regions. But even more importantly his development of and advocacy for an architectural language of material economy and elegance and delight - is ever more relevant to all architects working in today’s challenging times. Doshi is a visionary constructor of ideas who works with form and light. He is also a constructor of an appropriate vernacular for and of the places in which he works. His many

wonderful buildings celebrate the local technologies and crafts as well as the natural habitat to create environments that are legible, hard-working backdrops joyfully accommodating the theatre of everyday life. Once visited and studied it is soon apparent that they are also wonderful essays in the careful interplay of formal themes and technologies. Importantly building and nature are always intertwined to create a brave, confident and on occasion challenging architecture of purpose and delight. Architecture as background and foreground.

Doshi, now in his nineties, works every day and remains as prolific as he is inspirational. A living testament to the potential of an architectural history of ideas, passed through practice and education from one generation to the next. An architecture that is always evolving to help define a better future. On hearing the news that he will receive the Royal Gold Medal in 2022, Balkrishna Doshi said: “I am pleasantly surprised and deeply humbled to receive the Royal Gold Medal from the Queen of England. What a great honour! The news of this award brought back memories of my time working with Le Corbusier in 1953 when he had just received the news of getting the Royal Gold Medal. I vividly recollect his excitement to receive this honour from Her Majesty. He said to me metaphorically, ‘I wonder how big and heavy this medal will be.’ Today, six decades later I feel truly overwhelmed to be bestowed with the same award as my guru, Le Corbusier - honouring my six decades of practice.

Sangath, Doshi’s architecture studio, Ahmedabad, India © Vastushilpa Foundation

Tagore Hall, Ahmedabad, Gujurat, India © Vastushilpa Foundation I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to my wife, my daughters and most

importantly my team and collaborators at Sangath my studio.”

Past Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Conventions Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) is celebrated on 9th January every year to mark the contribution of Overseas Indian community in the development of India. January 9 was chosen as the day to celebrate this occasion since it was on this day in 1915 that Mahatma Gandhi, the greatest Pravasi, returned to India from South Africa, led India’s freedom struggle and changed the lives of Indians forever. PBD conventions are being held every year since 2003. Since 2015, its format has been revised to celebrate the PBD once every two years and to hold theme based PBD Conferences during the intervening period with participation from overseas diaspora experts, policy makers and stakeholders. These conventions provide a platform to the overseas Indian community to engage with the government and people of the land of their ancestors for mutually beneficial activities. These conventions are also very useful in networking among the overseas Indian community residing in various parts of the world and enable them to share their experiences in various fields. To connect India to its vast overseas diaspora and bring their knowledge, expertise and skills on a common platform, the PBD Convention - the flagship event of MOIA is organized from 7th-9th January every year since 2003. The 15th PBD Convention Call: (07) 3192 5188

was held from 21 to 23 January 2019 in Varanasi with Uttar Pradesh as the Partner State. Over 7000 delegates participated in the 15th PBD. In reverence to the sentiments of the larger diaspora, two attractions were added to the 15th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas – viz. visit to Kumbh Mela in Prayagraj and participation in Republic Day celebrations in New Delhi on 26 January 2019 were also offered to the PBD participants. Heads of Missions in India also participated in the Kumbh Mela. PBD 2020 was held in New Delhi on 9th January 2020 in

which EAM interacted with Diaspora in eight countries through Video Conference. The event was webcast live to all Indian Missions and Posts abroad. Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) Convention is the flagship event of the Ministry of External Affairs and provides an important platform to engage and connect with the overseas Indians. In view of the sentiments of our vibrant diaspora community, the 16th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Convention, was organized on 9th January 2021, despite the ongoing Covid

pandemic. The Convention was in virtual format, as were the PBD Conferences held recently in the run up to the Convention. The theme of 16th PBD Convention 2021 is "Contributing to Aatmanirbhar Bharat". PBD Convention had three segments. The PBD Convention was inaugurated by Shri Narendra Modi, Hon’ble Prime Minister of India and featured a keynote address by the Chief Guest, H.E. Mr. Chandrikapersad Santokhi, Hon’ble President of the Republic of Suriname. The winners of the online Bharat ko Janiye Quiz for the youth

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was be announced. The Inaugural session was followed by the two Plenary sessions. The first Plenary on Role of Diaspora in Aatmanirbhar Bharat, featured addresses by External Affairs Minister and Commerce and Industry Minister while the second Plenary on Facing Post Covid Challenges - Scenario in Health, Economy, Social and International Relations, will be addressed by Minister of Health and Minister of State for External Affairs. Both Plenaries featured panel discussions by eminent diaspora experts.

The finale was the Valedictory Session where the Hon’ble Rashtrapatiji delivered his Valedictory address to mark the occasion of Pravasi Bharatiya Divas. The names of the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awardees for 2020-21 was announced. Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Awards are conferred to select Indian diaspora members to recognize their achievements and honour their contributions to various fields, both in India and abroad. The Youth PBD was celebrated virtually on the theme "Bringing together Young Achievers from India and Indian Diaspora” on 8 January 2021, and was anchored by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports. The Special Guest for the event is H.E. Ms. Priyanca Radhakrishnan, Minister for Community& Voluntary Sector of New Zealand. Regional Pravasi Bhartiya Divas (RPBD) Ministry has been organizing Regional Pravasi Bharatiya Divas Conferences (RPBD) to reach out to a vast majority of our diaspora, who for various reasons, are unable to attend the main biennial event in India and benefit from its deliberations. This is in response to a strong and persistent demand for holding such events regionally. These have elicited enthusiastic support from the Indian diaspora and the local Governments and have been highly successful.

THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 41


Ranveer Singh and Alia Bhatt starrer Rocky Aur Rani Ki Prem Kahani shoot postponed due to surge in Covid-19 cases The shooting of several impending films have been affected due to the surge in Covid-19 cases in India. It is said that Karan Johar, who is helming Rocky Aur Rani Ki Prem Kahani, was all set to shoot a song featuring Ranveer and Alia in Mumbai’s Goregaon Film City on January 10. However, this shoot has been put on hold for the time being. According to the reports, a song’s shoot was planned much in advance and a set was already being built on a

grand scale. However, Karan Johar did not want to take any chances with the rising cases of Covid-19 in Mumbai. He wanted to make sure that his cast and crew stays safe in these testing times. Reportedly, the set will stay up until they can resume the shoot at a better time. Apart from Rocky Aur Rani Ki Prem Kahani, shoot of Salman Khan-Katrina Kaif’s Tiger 3 and Vijay Deverakonda's Liger are postponed to a surge of COVID-19 cases in the country.

Priyadarshan hospitalised in Chennai after testing positive for COVID-19 The COVID-19 virus is spreading at a rampant rate in India and several parts of the globe with an added threat of the Omicron variant. Several celebrities from the film industry have also contracted the virus. On Friday, filmmaker Priyadarshan also tested positive for the virus. Reportedly, the 64-yearold filmmaker has been hospitalised in Chennai's Apollo Hospital after the diagnosis. Further details on

Priyadarshan's health is not known at the moment. Meanwhile, India is

Aayush Sharma NO LONGER a part of Salman Khan’s Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali – wants to do main lead

Bollywood Hungama had previously reported that Aayush Sharma will be joining the cast of Salman Khan and Sajid Nadiadwala's upcoming collaboration, Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali. However, we can now confirm that Aayush Sharma is no longer a part of this action comedy, which stars Pooja Hegde as Salman's love interest. "After being appreciated in Antim, Aayush has taken this decision to not take up character roles in big films. Salman too feels the same, as the track of Aayush in Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali was

not a significant one. He was to play the role of Salman's younger brother, though the entire film revolved around Salman's character," a source told Bollywood Hungama. The source also added that Salman's other protégé; Zaheer Iqbal will however continue being a part of Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali. "Two more actors will come on board to play key roles in this Farhad Samji directed action comedy. The casting work is currently going on in full swing as the movie will take off by the end of February," the source further told us. Meanwhile, South Superstar Venkatesh has come on board to play the parallel lead to Salman Khan in Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali. His character has been kept under wraps for now; however, we heard that a top Southern actress will soon join the cast to play the romantic lead alongside Venky. Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali is a reunion of Salman with Sajid after the blockbuster, Kick, and we trust the duo to deliver big yet again with this high octane commercial entertainer.

42 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

seeing a massive surge in COVID-19 cases with the trends indicating a third

wave of the pandemic in the country. On Thursday, India registered over 1 lakh positive cases. With an alarming rise in the cases, several state governments have announced strict restrictions and implemented partial lockdown. On the work front, Priyadarshan's last release was the National Award Winning film Marakkar: Arabikadalinte Simham starring Mohanlal in the lead.

Little Things actress Mithila Palkar starts her birthday week ‘on COVID positive note’; says she’s enjoying attention from family and friends while being isolated

Taking to Instagram stories, Mithila shared a note stating her diagnosis and health condition. “Hiee frenz! I have started my birthday week on a Covid positive note. Bummer, I know! I’m asymptomatic and isolating and enjoying all the attention my friends and family are virtually showering. That aside, my family is so far okay. I’m very careful with all of them (especially my grandparents, who I hardly meet now since I started working), so I’m hoping they continue to be okay. Those who I met over the past 10 days have already been informed. I’m just popping by here to tell you to mask up, stay safe and hang in there!” read Mithila’s note. Popularly known for as ‘girl-next-door’, Mithila

talked about living with the tag, and whether it restricts her as an artiste with a print publication. To which, the actress replied that she doesn’t feel restricted because she gets the opportunity to explore different parts and characters. For the longest time she was and still is, in that space of a girl-next-door, but she enjoys it for what it is. Every girl-next-door is different, and she have been discovering that with every character she plays. Though, it is kind of a stereotype, but she is not affected by that. On the work front, Mithila Palkar was last seen reprising her her character Kavya Kulkarni in web series Little Things season 4, which released on Netflix in October 2021.

Akshay Kumar and Tiger Shroff to unite for the photoshoot of their action film with Ali Abbas Zafar; official announcement expected soon Bollywood Hungama had earlier reported that filmmaker Ali Abbas Zafar is all set to helm Akshay Kumar and Tiger Shroff in an out-and-out action film. The filmmaker has been conceptualizing a big-scale project for a while and wants to ensure the film is up to the mark for both Tiger and Akshay. According to the latest reports, the two action stars will be uniting for a photoshoot today and an official announcement of the film can be expected soon. The film which is currently in the preproduction phase will go on

floors soon, probably after the third wave of the pandemic settles down. Reportedly, the upcoming action-drama will be based on the storyline of

Kartik Aaryan to play an air force pilot in Hansal Mehta’s next In the last few weeks, Kartik Aaryan might have been in news for all the wrong reasons. But since then, there have been two more films almost announced with Kartik. Today, he clocks 10 years in the business and we can tell you that he's signed

Hansal Mehta's next and a film with Sajid Nadiadwala's banner. Now, we can give you some inside scoop on Hansal's next. A source informed Bollywood Hungama, "It's a commercial film that will have a Hansal touch. The film has been put

the 1998 film Bade Miyan Chhote Miyan and is most likely to be titled the same. The film Bade Miyan Chhote Miyan originally featured

Amitabh Bachchan and Govinda in double roles and also had Raveena Tandon as the female protagonist. The upcoming action-thriller will have power-packed action and some elements of humor too. Apart from Ali Abbas Zafar stepping in as the director, the film will be produced by Vashu Bhagnani, Jackky Bhagnani, and Deepshikha Bhagnani under their banner, Pooja Films. The film is expected to go on floors once Ali is done with the work on his current assignment with Shahid Kapoor.

together by Harman Baweja and has a nationalistic angle to it. In fact, the movie is based on a real life story. Kartik will play the role of an IAF officer. He will be the main pilot in the rescue operation." This comes after a year of Janhvi Kapoor playing Gunjan Saxena in her previous film. Kangana Ranaut too is playing an air force pilot in Tejas, which is backed by RSVP, the same production house that has bankrolled Kartik's film as well.


Christmas Drinks with Ravishing Fashionistas BRISBANE Ravishing Fashionistas has once again stepped out in style this holiday season hosting the glittering Ravishing Fashionistas annual Christmas party where guests had the opportunity to meet the team and help celebrate the year of successes had by the RF team. Set in the center foyer of the lavish Brisbane Quarter, the Christmas celebration showcased Ravishing Fashionistas pop up shop, hosting the beautiful sparkling designs from Black N Bling with a mini runway show featuring her exquisite designs. Invited guests came adorned in their Christmas best, dripping in red, white, and green glamour, absolutely sparkling under the W Hotel lights, and were treated to cocktails and canapes while our special guest Damien Rossi announced our spectacularly best dressed prize winners. The party then ramped up as guests were entertained by the sensational Polonce who absolutely sang the house down and had everyone on their feet, dancing the night away. Reflecting back on the year the Ravishing Fashionistas team couldn’t be prouder, helping women to embrace themselves by breaking stereotypes with a spectacular SOLD-OUT

runway show to over 500 guests and raising much needed funds for the National Breast Cancer Foundation and Cancer council with an exquisite high tea event. The Ravishing Fashionistas Christmas Party is the team’s way of giving thanks to all who have supported Upma

kite and her passion for breaking stereotypes within the fashion industry and embracing the mission to create confidence, diversity,

and inclusion for all women. The unwavering dedication of everyone involved in the RF journey allows the team to provide more opportunities for women from all walks of

life to embrace themselves no matter their shape, size, or heritage. Looking forward we are thrilled to make some exciting announcements

extending the RF brand into new ventures as well as the announcement of our 2022 Runway Show very soon, where we are aiming to go bigger and

brighter, introducing more talented designers and further encouraging women to embrace themselves by breaking stereotypes within the fashion industry.

Rhythm India Club (RIC) hosts a December to Remember BRISBANE, RHYTHM INDIA CLUB (RIC) launched- a sold out and successful “December to Remember” Bollywood type event. The organizers – Hemant Dua, Tanvi Goel & Chandan Das did a fabulous job. A DECEMBER to REMEMBER, (A Bollywood live event) was held on 18th Dec 2021 in Ron Hurley Theatre, Morningside, Brisbane. RIC delivered on their promise by delivering such a mesmerizing event which was undoubtedly well-organized and full of entertainment. The hard work that had been put in behind the event could be seen on the day. It was a full-house show delivered by wonderful and renowned Musicians like Steve Shankar (Music Director & Singer), Dreamer(Guitarist & Singer), Ajinkya Paralikar (Percussionist)and talented singers like Chandan Das, Yousuf Ali Khan , Hemant Dua, Sonalisa Mishra , Binny Jardi, Manjay Aryal, Dr Satnam (The Mentor & a singer) Anuja Paraikar with the support of talented MC’s Anu & Zain. This event couldn’t have been successful without the support of valuable sponsors Education Embassy, Allora College, Pennisi Call: (07) 3192 5188

Zia Lawyers, Zevar, QLD Skip Hire, Supreme Turf, Mobile Connect, AusIndia Travel, Target Solar,

Sustainable Home, BnH Group, Integrity Insurance Solutions, Sangeet Premi Club, Australian Indian

Radio & Brisbane Indian Times, Indoz Tv, Queen Collections, Radio Rhythm, and Curry n Cask.

www.indiantimes.com.au

Team RIC had put in a lot of effort into making the event a huge success, lot of sweat, blood and

tears went into bringing it to fruition and they have promised to be back with more so stay tuned.

THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 43


Can you take health supplements if you have chronic hepatitis? Viral hepatitis B and hepatitis C affect the liver and therefore, if you have chronic hepatitis B or C it is important to protect your liver from other things that might increase the risk of damaging it. Everything we consume including vitamins, supplements, herbal medicines or over the counter medicines is processed by the liver. The liver is the detox organ in our body and removes waste and toxins and it is therefore important to not burden our liver. To reduce burden of our liver it is important to: • Avoid or reduce alcohol • Avoid or stop smoking • Maintain a healthy weight

• Eat a healthy diet and avoid fatty, fried and processed foods • Limit or avoid salty and sugary foods and drinks. However, to protect our liver, especially for people with hepatitis B or hepatitis C, it is important to ensure that your doctor is aware of any additional health related products that you might be taking or thinking to take including:

• Health Supplements including vitamins, minerals and liver detox • Herbal and traditional medicines • Over the counter medicines • Any medicines suggested by family, friends or the internet Whilst many supplements, herbals and over the counter medicines are useful for certain

conditions, they may also be harmful to the liver, especially if a person has an existing liver condition such as chronic hepatitis. For example some prescribed medications such as for acid reflux (including those that can be bought at a pharmacy or supermarket) and for cholesterol management can affect hepatitis C treatment, therefore, the doctor may need adjust these to ensure the treatment works and no damage is caused to the liver. Over the counter medicines such as paracetamol can be harmful to the liver if not taken as recommended or are taken over a long period of time. Some supplements and herbal medicines such as black cohosh, reishi also

known as Lingzhi, green tea extract and ginseng along with many other useful medicines for other conditions, are known to be potentially harmful or toxic to the liver. Many people get advice from friends, family and the internet for medications to improve their health, but some of these supplements etc may interact with existing prescribed medicines and

can cause damage to the liver including liver failure. Before starting or if you are already taking any additional medicines or health supplements please discuss with your doctor, to make sure that they are safe and appropriate for you. For more information please go to our website www.eccq.com.au/bbv or contact us at ECCQ on (07) 3844 9166.

Hepatitis, HIV/AIDS and Sexual Health Program Ethnic Communities Council of Queensland (ECCQ)

Home Remedies for hair growth Nimisha Modi

Hetvi Hair & Beauty 0412350013

Hey Girls, home Remedies for hair growth and prevent getting grey. Indian Gooseberry (Amla)

Tips to control hair fall and promote hair growth is incomplete without the mention of alma, also known as Indian Goose Berry and it is a popular remedy used in Ayurveda. Regular application of amla directly on hair helps in strengthening the hair follicles, stimulates hair growth and prevents hair breakage and split ends. There are many magical properties of amla; it is filled with antioxidants and vitamin C. Amla is good for healthy hair growth and is also known for improving the pigmentation of the hair. Mix 2 teaspoons of Amla juice with 2 teaspoons of lime juice. Apply this mixture on the scalp and leave it to dry for 2 hours. Rinse off with warm water. Garlic This popular kitchen herb is well-known for its strong flavours and numerous health benefits. Garlic is one of the fast hair

growth home remedies and is majorly known for controlling hair fall. It is also one of the most popular home remedies for scalp fungus. It boosts the circulation in the scalp and regenerates hair growth. Boil 7 to 8 cloves of crushed garlic with olive oil and apply it to the roots of the hair -follicles. Repeat this thrice a week to notice the difference.

loss usually found in the Middle Eastern countries. Prepared from rosemary herb, this oil increases cell division and accelerates the blood circulation. It has proved to be effective for hair growth and is used as a hair tonic. Rosemary Oil: Take two tablespoons of shampoo and mix two tablespoons of rosemary oil into it. Shampoo your hair with this mixture. You can also massage your scalp with equal amounts of olive oil and rosemary oil. Potatoes

Vitamin E Oil Filled with antioxidants, vitamin E oil fights the free radicals. It helps to increase oxygen in the body and increases the blood circulation in the scalp. Massage your scalp with vitamin E oil and leave it overnight. Wash it off with a mild shampoo the following day to gain silky smooth hair. Rosemary Oil: Rosemary oil is one of the best oils to reduce hair

44 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022

Being a rich source of nutrients such as vitamins A, B and C, calcium, potassium,

iron and phosphorus, potatoes are an amazing natural remedy for hair growth, preventing dryness of hair and premature greying. Take 1 ½ cups of potato juice in a bowl. Add a teaspoon of honey, a little bit of water

and 1 egg yolk and mix it together. Apply this mixture to damp hair and leave it on for 30 minutes. Wash off with a mild shampoo. Potatoes for hair: Doing this once a week is more than enough to strengthen

and rejuvenate weak and brittle hair. After a few months, you will notice the change in your hair. Have a wonderful holiday and look after yourself in Summer. See you next time.


Qld records 9,581 new cases... CONTD. FROM PG 1 More than 21,000 people were tested in the past 24 hours. Chief Health Officer John Gerrard says case numbers will start to become a poorer indicator of how the virus is moving through the community and the focus will shift more toward hospitalisations.

Dr Gerrard said the Gold Coast was a region of particular concern when it came to the spread of COVID. He said of the 21 ICU patients in Queensland, 11 were on the Gold Coast. "A quarter of the ward admissions, 101 out of 419 [are] currently on the Gold Coast, suggesting that there is a significant surge of the virus there on the Gold

Coast," Dr Gerrard said. "It's not surprising given the sheer number of interstate visitors which would have caused seeding events to have occurred. "But I would also point out that the vaccination rates on the Gold Coast are among the low end, the lowest in southeast Queensland at least." Six of the 11 people in intensive care on the Gold

Coast are unvaccinated. "It's hard to believe in my mind how you can still be unvaccinated now in the middle of a pandemic," he said. The five other people were fully vaccinated but had other complex health issues, like strokes, brain injuries or head injuries. Deputy Commissioner Steve Gollschewski said 189

masks were handed out by police yesterday, 168 of those on the Gold Coast. "As you've heard from the Chief Health Officer, there are lower levels of vaccination and increased illness on the Gold Coast so our message for all our community and particularly on the Gold Coast, please wear your mask." Health Minister Yvette

D'Ath said the government was unable to announce the full number of new cases today because of a glitch at four testing labs across the state. "We believe this may be due to an update in software that was due to a glitch," she said. The additional numbers will be reported once the issue is resolved.

Thousands of children booked for vaccinations Queensland Health has received more than 26,000 bookings for children aged five to 11 to be vaccinated since December, with those vaccinations being administered from today. The Premier said there are approximately 478,000 children in this age group who are eligible to get vaccinated in Queensland. "We need to make sure that parents are booking their children in, but of course it's all depending on supply coming in from the federal government and my understanding is that we'll get an update on that at national cabinet later this week," she said. Of Queenslanders aged 16 and over, 91.5 per cent of people have had one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and 87.79

per cent are fully vaccinated. There have been 709,133 booster shots administered

across the state and the Premier urged more people to book in to receive their third

jab. "It's that extra layer of protection that you need

and it's really important that you book in and you get that done."

The Premier said she did not know how many teachers in Queensland were unvaccinated and expected some families would also choose not to get their children vaccinated. "Let's try and get as many done as possible. I urge families if you have any concerns whatsoever to please talk to your GP," she said. "It is safe, it is effective and children are getting vaccinated around the world." The Premier dismissed concerns about vaccinated and unvaccinated children mingling in classrooms. "The more people that get vaccinated the better, so I'm just urging parents to go and talk to a professional and please I'm encouraging you to get your children vaccinated."

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BRISBANE We are pleased to announce that the 14th Asia Pacific Cities Summit and Mayors’ Forum (2023APCS) will be held in Brisbane from 11-13 October 2023. Keep an eye on APCS updates as more information about the Summit is released. The Asia Pacific Cities Summit (APCS) and Mayors’ Forum is the region’s premier Summit that brings together one of the largest numbers of city leaders with the best and brightest in business. Today, cities are increasingly recognised as key influencers, connectors and contributors to the global economy and the Summit is the platform for connection and knowledge Call: (07) 3192 5188

The Asia Pacific Cities Summit (APCS) and Mayors’ Forum is the region’s premier Summit that brings together one of the largest numbers of city leaders with the best and brightest in business. Today, cities are increasingly recognised as key influencers, connectors and contributors to the global economy and the Summit is the platform for connection and knowledge exchange.

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THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 45


2022 Yearly Predictions

Aries ( 21st March to 20th April )

Taurus ( 21st April to 21st May )

Gemini ( 22nd May to 21st June )

The year 2022 may start slowly for the Aries born according to the yearly zodiac predictions in the first quarter. On the flip side, the financial year is beneficial and rewarding regardless of a shaky start at the beginning. More access to earnings may improve your year financially. Previous investments and its interest may also reward you with an extra source of income this year. Your precision for the source of gains which may allow you to make extra money this year. Natives who are married or looking to marry their special someone may have a smooth year. Aries students are likely to face challenges in their academic year in 2022. There may be some conflict between your studies and hobbies and you may have to maintain balance between them in the beginning. Thought aries natives in research may have a fruitful year with gaining better results. Aries natives may have to pay special attention to their health this year. Thus it is advised for you to be careful throughout the year regarding your health and take proper precautions.

You may be able to coordinate your actions and achievements very well at the beginning of the year, which may lead to success and celebration. Flows of money may be slightly on the higher side and you may make income through different sources. Those of you who have invested in real estate or in commodities are likely to make some extra money through trading activities. You are very particular about the person you want to be with, and your high standards may help you make the right match. Academically too this year is looking great and positive for those who are working hard and are looking to make a huge difference in their performance. Slowly you are also likely to develop a new passion toward a profession which has been unique and important to you. As the earnings for the year may be good, even the asset making exercise may improve this year.

Therefore, the year may have many supporting factors to you and shall enable you to balance your finances wisely. A desire to develop a relationship with someone close to you may be high this year. As each month passes, the urge to find someone important in your life may also be high. Thus, the desire of finding a life partner may be fulfilled in the second half of the year. Though the year is good for those who have been working hard in pursuing their Masters or even Bachelors. As long as you keep your ailments under control, you may be able to build up your assets and buy a property as the earnings for the year are positive. There may be a mix of results in the marriage department this year. Also, for those who have been married, the year may bring some happy moments from the middle of the year.

Cancer ( 22nd June to 22nd July )

Leo ( 23rd July to 22nd August )

Virgo ( 23rd August to 22nd September )

Considering recent past years, the year 2022 is expected to be a favorable year for cancerians. It may be a year when those who had to use their investments in the past may be able to use them again. There is only one piece of advice, and that is to maintain patience, as convincing them is sometimes difficult. Those who have experienced this phase would benefit from this one looking at settling down in their relationship. Native couples dating each other are also likely to get married. Those who are committed to working hard and plan to beat each goal may be rewarded this year. Additionally, students can expect some surprises during the course of the year. A progressive year is in store for students this year. Your achievements may be made high this year due to hard work. But hard work may come only after investing considerable time in your preparation and application of knowledge from time to time.

This year may be rewarding for all those who work hard and plan to surpass each milestone. Starting from monetary gains, this may be the year where you would take a new resolution of not to lend money to anyone. This may be a year for those who had to use their investments in the past to replenish their investment once again. The year also has some surprises for Students. Though for students pursuing research or who are pursuing an MBA, the year would test your time management and knowledge. Therefore, work hard to make sure you complete the task of finishing the exam on time. Your achievements may be made high this year due to hard work. But hard work may come only after investing considerable time in your preparation and application of knowledge from time to time. So, plan your year wisely.

Virgos may experience many ups and downs during the year. Your popularity may increase this year among the people you mingle with. The results of your hard work may be apparent for you this year if you have been working hard on your fortunes. Whether it be financial pressure or a lowered self-esteem issue, you face heavy pressure this year. Hence, you should do your best to keep your finances in order this year, especially between January and September. In addition, the year 2022 may be a very good year for students who have planned ahead and worked hard. Take advantage of the academic preparation you receive this year. Taking management courses in a foreign country is a good choice for students this year. In fact, your vigour this year may be high enough to give you a rise in your career.

Libra ( 23rd September to 22nd October )

Scorpio ( 23rd October to 22nd November )

Sagittarius ( 23rd November to 21st December )

There may be many progressive and supportive aspects to the year 2022. This would now be more progressive and supportive. Getting a better grip on people may enable you to cope better in the coming year. Changing your working style might be a pleasant change from the monotony you might experience. You would plan to improve your business gains systematically. Those of you who have been planning to marry your beloved partner are likely to find someone interesting and encouraging. Love may slowly blossom and you both may lead a very happy married life. This would be your year in all the facets of your life. With a better life, you would also lead a happy living to make sure you accumulate wealth and build property. All this achievement may be made successful in our life and you shall be quite happy with your achievements towards the end of the year.

There is no doubt that time is great, but this would only be accompanied by the right actions you would take. In fact, your efforts are the prime reason for the success that you have been following for a long time. You may find yourself appreciated and cared for by others this year, which may be due to a kind heart towards others. Those of you who have been planning to initiate some important project for a long time, it would be better to postpone the changes you intend to do in your current project, as time is not favourable for you to undertake it now. This would be a year where you would be quite content and observing your list of achievements to go from place to place. Unexpected problems in the family may keep you away from the trip you planned and dreamed about for a long time. Thus, the year may have mixed results but at the same time, you would be happy with your achievements.

It is likely that your anxiety level may increase when the year 2022 is discussed, as you would feel a relative ease flowing into your daily routine. During the coming year, you may have a positive experience at work and at home. You may find yourself more appreciated and cared for by others this year, which may be due to good deeds and a kind heart towards others. Those of you who have been planning to initiate some important project for a long time, it would be better to postpone the changes you intend to do in your current project. This would enable you to find someone in your life, but the timeline may be till the end of the year. Observing your list of achievements as you travel from place to place would be a lovely way to end the year. You may be unable to take the trip you had planned and dreamed of for a long time in the face of unexpected family problems. Despite your depressive feelings, chances may find you very soon.

Capricorn ( 22nd December to 20th January )

Aquarius ( 21st January to 18th February )

Pisces ( 19th February to 20th March )

Throughout the year, you may experience joy and cheerfulness. By focusing introspectively and by exercising your mind on things other than mundane things, you may rise above the pressures and challenges of routine existence this year. An intimate friendship that always adds profound meaning to your life may prove to be what you need for your entire life. Further, the year is good for those who are looking for a life partner. The timing of your investment is more important after September 2022. You can use the initial few months of the year to plan and analyse what to do and what shouldn’t be done. Some of you would also get the opportunity to work with new partners or business associates. Choose them wisely to avoid any mistake on your partner in fixing the working relationship with them. As the year winds down, you may be delighted with the direction life is taking you.

This year, harmony and peace may be the keywords for you. Thanks to the principles of harmony, you would be able to enhance your career this year. Women may have a positive time this year. This is also the year for higher academic learning. Those students pursuing their desired higher studies, may have to settle down with the preparation of your academic learning. But the good part is that you would have options to choose from. Thanks to the dedication and hard work that you have been investing for long and this may bring you closer to your dream to be fulfilled. Again, those of you who are singles, may find the year to be tricky. You may be emotionally connected with someone, but may have some doubts about the newly linked up person. There is a possibility that you may not be happy with the way life would take up a turn and this would make you reconsider your decision to tie the nuptial knot with the person.

In the coming year, you may become easily agitated and inactive, lacking motivation to take action and present yourself the way you used to. You have been avoiding expansion plans for a very long time, which has never led to anything serious. Further, those of you planning to earn through various sources of income may do well this year. Efforts and hard work may bring wonderful results in the days to come. Be meticulous in your actions this year as your efforts will play a very crucial role in building your career and also to build your financial base. Your financial position is likely to be good throughout the year. For those planning to conceive a child, the year might be good in all walks of your life. The gains that you would have planned are likely to make you progress and give you gains in all walks of your life. So, work hard and the year is here to stay for you throughout the rest of the year.

46 — THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022


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THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2022 — 47

THE BRISBANE INDIAN TIMES, January, 2020 — 51


Folau can be ‘best in the world’ as sacked Wallaby star’s rugby career starts again Israel Folau - the man who was sacked by Rugby Australia ahead of the World Cup in 2019 - can quickly remerge as one of the best rugby players in the world. That’s the opinion of former Wallaby Liam Gill, who on Saturday will lineup alongside Folau for NTT Communications Shining Arcs against Kobe Steelers. “Izzy has just picked up where he left off,” Gill told foxsports.com.au. “I dare say once he plays this season of the Japanese League One, he’ll be considered one of the best in the world again. As Rugby Australia attempts to work out who will grab the No.15 jersey and wear it in the lead-up to the 2023 World Cup, 32-year-old Folau will run out in Japan. It will be his first rugby match since Rugby Australia terminated his multi-milliondeal in early 2019, for what the governing body deemed

homophobic remarks on social media. His controversial sacking not only began an ugly chain of events, which ultimately ended in RA accepting an undisclosed settlement fee thought millions, but divided the Wallabies in half. The ugly fiasco dragged on for a year and critically was a major disruption in former coach Michael Cheika’s World Cup plans. The Wallabies were dumped out of the World Cup at the quarter-final stages by England - their worst result at the tournament. After a brief stint back in rugby league for French side Catalans Dragons and The Southport Tigers in the Queensland Cup, Folau signed a two-year-deal for the Shining Arcs in July estimated to be around $500,000 - half the wage he was on with RA. Folau is under no uncertain terms in his contract that he will not post religious messages on his

Novak Djokovic news LIVE: Tennis star tested positive last month as fellow player detained over exemption

Follow all the latest developments after men’s world No1 and defending Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic had his visa revoked at a Melbourne airport. Novak Djokovic remains in quarantine at a state-run hotel in Melbourne as the world No 1 awaits his appeal hearing late on Monday morning in Australia. Djokovic, who travelled to Australia under the assumption he had been granted a “medical exemption”, despite refusing to confirm his vaccination status, was held by the Australian Border Force (ABF) for around ten hours at Tullamarine airport on Wednesday before being transferred to the Park hotel in the suburb of Carlton. The Serbian immediately lodged an appeal against the ABF’s decision to rescind his visa but the nine-time Australian

Open champion could face up to a three-year ban from the country if he fails to win his case. The Victorian government and Tennis Australia had appeared to assure Djokovic that he was free to enter the country and defend his title, but a fierce wave of public backlash led to political intervention. Some have accused Australia’s government of using the tennis star as a political pawn to distract from the country’s own Covid problems, however, home affairs minister Karen Andrews insisted Djokovic was not being “held captive” and is “free to leave at any time”. Another player, Renata Voracova, was subsequently detained by the ABF after entering the country under the same exemption as Djokovic, despite having

already competed a warm-up event Melbourne.

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in in

social media accounts. He has not published on Instagram a religious post since August 1, 2019. Nor has there been a clearing of the air at his new Japanese club, with the Shining Arcs welcoming Folau with open arms. “Regarding clearing the air, we’ve never really touched on anything,” Gill said. “He touched down here at the end of October, came into

the team and we all just kind of kept on as per usual.” Gill, who left Australian rugby in 2016 and played 15 Tests for the Wallabies, described Folau as “one of the loveliest guys you’ll meet”. “I never really had anything to do with what happened and I never really had too much time with him in the Wallabies because I was in and out quick,” Gill said. “But he was a lovely guy

back then and he still is an incredibly lovely person. “He just came in, went on as usual, gets along with everyone and is absolutely freakish on the field. “Pens (former Waratahs coach Rob Penney) hasn’t addressed anything, (former Wallabies World Cup-winner) Matty Cockbain hasn’t needed to address anything either, so it’s just one of those cases where we’re pretty bloody thankful to have him in the team. “He’s a lovely person. He lives in the same unit block as we do and he’s got a lovely family, so we’ve all just loved the fact he’s come here and got on with it and pretty excited to have him play the season with us.” Former Wallabies great Toutai Kefu plans on calling up Folau for Tonga’s World Cup qualification this year after World Rugby changed their eligibility laws late last year to help strengthen

emerging nations. Kefu said having access, as well as up to 20 others, was a “game-changer”. Folau - the three-time John Eales Medalist and the former poster boy of Australian rugby - will wear the No.15 jersey on Saturday in their opening match of the season. Kefu’s World Cup-winning teammate Cockbain, who joined the Arcs ahead of the season and has linked up with sacked Waratahs coach Penney, said Folau was in terrific shape. “He looks as physically strong as I’ve ever seen him look,” Cockbain said. Wallabies great Will Genia said the Japanese community would judge Folau on his deeds going forward. “He’s a great guy,” Genia said. “Regardless of all that’s gone on. “He’s always been humble, hard working and genuinely kind to people.”

Usman Khawaja nets second century, Australia sets England 388 to win fourth Ashes Test at SCG Another Usman Khawaja has set Australia well on the way to taking a 4-0 Ashes lead in the SCG Test, giving England a formidable victory target of 388 runs heading into day five. England openers Zak Crawley and Haseeb Hameed knocked 30 runs off the chase in an awkward period before stumps after Pat Cummins declared with Australia 6-265 midway through the final session. With his unbeaten 101 paired with a first-innings 137, Khawaja became just the sixth Australian batter this century to score two tons in the same Test, continuing a remarkable return to the national side after two-and-a-half years on the outs. He was backed up well by all-rounder Cameron Green, who had his first big innings of the series, belting 74 to help set up the evening declaration. England started the day at the crease trailing by 155 runs, and Australia took the final

three wickets inside the first hour of play, taking a 122-run lead into the second innings. Australia's attempt to build the lead got off to a rough start when David Warner (3) nicked off to Mark Wood in the sixth over, while Marcus Harris fell to spinner Jack Leach for 27, wasting another start. Marnus Labuschagne (29) was also out to Wood in the first over after lunch, bringing Khawaja to the crease, and he was joined by Green when Steve Smith (23) missed a

straight one from Leach, with Australia suddenly in a little bit of trouble. But Khawaja looked in total control once again, and while Green started as scratchily as he has done all series, the pair settled into their work after tea. Perhaps concerned about a meandering over rate or the health of his fast bowlers with Ben Stokes unable to contribute with the ball, England captain Joe Root bowled himself and Jack Leach

‘Pretty incredible’: Khawaja’s family lead outpouring of support for century hero Australian centurion Usman Khawaja’s wife Rachel and first child have led a chorus of praise and love for the batsman after he blasted his ninth Test century and his first Test in two years. Rachel Khawaja threw her and Usman’s daughter Aisha into the air with delight

as Khawaja brought up his century just before tea on day two with a flick of the wrists down to fine leg. Mrs Khawaja has been by Usman’s side while he battled his way back into the Test team after he was unfairly made the scapegoat for Australia’s Ashes defeat at Headingly in 2019.

“Oh my goodness,” Rachel said in an interview with Fox Cricket’s Kath Laughnan. “It is pretty incredible. It was so unexpected. We didn’t even think he would be playing this game. “Then to go from that to scoring a hundred, wow.” Rachel revealed Usman

for most of the final session. Khawaja and Green balanced accumulation and aggression to set up the declaration without throwing away important individual scores. Khawaja made it to his half-century and continued on his merry way to his second ton of the match, attacking the spinners to great effect. At the other end, Green took the attack to Wood, uncorking some powerful pull shots to notch the second half-century of his young career. Aware that Cummins would declare when the lead hit 400, Green tried one aggressive shot too many and skied a Leach ball into Root's hands. Leach took the wicket of Alex Carey with the next ball and, with no other batters apparently padded up and Leach on a hat-trick, Cummins settled for a 387-run lead. Khawaja led the way off the field, raising his bat with a spot in the XI for the fifth Test now surely secured.

was feeling a few nerves in the build-up to the match, but they hardly showed in a near faultless knock on day two, which included 11 boundaries and over 200 balls. “He was definitely a bit nervous leading into the game for sure,” Mrs Khawaja said. “More than I expected. But I think once he had that final net session the day before he felt a bit better.


BSK Celebrated the triumph of 9th Annual Multicultural Cup & Mega Awards Night

BRISBNE, A multicultural Cricket Tournament was organised by Brisbane Super Kings and Proudly supported by Brisbane City Council. “The Concept of the tournament was to build new friendships, share culture and increase the network while having fun”. With the Support of multicultural community leaders, the event was officially managed by lead organiser Sathish Rajendran, who has been appointed as “Sports for All Community Ambassador” by Cricket Australia and Queensland Cricket Since 2012.

This Competition was a huge success, where 24 local teams from different backgrounds participated, games were played at 17 different venues. This was full of non-stop entertainment for 12 weeks by having Live Updates for every game Played and Live Streaming on YouTube. Not only, this Tournament was most interesting and nail-biting experience for the audience, but also this season was most followed and talk of the town with more than 42.3 K views on dedicated Live Scoring application, an astounding

love from Cricket lovers. Team UICC Claimed the” Winner’s title” for this year after defeating Brissy Bulls by 73 runs. Team Kalinga tigers South is also entitled with the Title for the” Fair Play Award” representing the true spirit of the game. As a tradition, to showcase the pathway of quality cricket and Sportsmanship spirit an Exhibition game was played between the Seniors BSK T20 squad under skipper JK and BSK Warehouse team in safe hands of karampal Singh. This game depicted “Sport gives induvial a sense of worth,

belonging, participation and achievement as well as promoting social cohesion” Cricket as a Sport is beyond Winning or Losing, above all having fun and making lifelong friendships, and promoting good health. Super Kings as Brisbane’s South-based First-ever Multicultural Cricket Club Also Celebrated Mega Awards Night Event held at Calamvale State School on 5th Dec. Nonetheless, this event acknowledged all the Players from BSK club i.e., 10 junior teams, including 2 Girls team, Followed by 2 Senior teams.

Undoubtedly, the utmost support from local community players has thriven in each passing year. Specifically, the grassroots participation from girls revealed: “Cricket as a Sport is unbiased. The Mega Ceremony was attended by more than 250 people all together with Players, Parents, Match officials, Coaches, Qld Cricket representatives, Sponsors, Community Leaders, and many more dignitaries, above all Special Guest of Honour Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner and Lady Mayoress witnessing and

supporting the 9th Annual BSK Awards Night. Speaking at the event, Special Guest of Honour, Lord Mayor of Brisbane, congratulated all the award winners and Praised Super kings for yet another remarkable season full of Cricket and entertainment. Every year, cricketers in Queensland look forward to the annual BSK cup and participate with immense passion and love for the game. So far BSK has succeeded in bringing people from different ethnic backgrounds together to celebrate cricket.

Queensland Fiji Football Association (QIDC 2021)

Official opening with the guest BRISBANE Queensland Fiji Football Association hosted and presented the 19th QIDC over 2 weekends, finishing off with finals on a beautiful Sunday 14th November 2021. Boasting as the biggest tournament hosted by QFFA, the tournament featured 10 Opens, 10 master and 2 Over 50’s division, culminating into a spectacular festival of Fiji Soccer, played at the Home of Football Queensland, Meakin park. Congratulations to all the district teams to have prepared well and presented well for the tournament, and certainly, in everyone’s eyes, the winner was the beautiful game of Soccer and QFFA. The official program featured the presentation to very worthy and notable Call: (07) 3192 5188

Primers winners - RA friends of QFFA, richly deserving the awards for their relentless and unsurpassed contributions to QFFA from its humble beginnings. The chief guest was Mr Aveen Singh a Past President of QFFA. The finals were played at an amazing pace, professionalism and flair as both master’s and Open divisions displayed breathtaking football. There can be one winner, and heartfelt congratulations to Team Ra (Open) and Team Labasa (Master) for lifting the coveted trophies respectively. President Vishwa Nair was elated with the success of the tournament and thanked his hardworking Executives, led by tournament coordinator

tribute to all the affiliated district officials for pursuing with the spirit of the Fiji Soccer and our continued endeavors to connecting with communities. The 2022 season will be officially announced early in the year, and with the success of QFFA, let’s fasten our seat belts as we enjoy this ride with QFFA and bring back memories of Fiji soccer to Brisbane.

(Left to right) Jitendra prasad - Tournament Director, Vishwa Nair - QFFA President, Aveen Singh - Chief Guest and Past QFFA President Jitendra Prasad, Secretary Aman Kumar, Treasurer Avikash Prasad, VP’s Ray Ali, Manjo Singh, Imroz

Mohammed, Sunil Gounder, Naresh Kumar and assistant Secretary, social media Vineet Raj. He also payed

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Our Award winners were Fair Team Premiers – Brisbane Lautoka Fair Team Masters – Brisbane Suva Young Talent of award in memory if Late Kaushal Sharma – Hamish Damodar (Lautoka)

MVP Masters Grand Final – Taufiq Ahmed (Labasa) MVP Premiers Grand Final – Malakai Love Semira Best and Fairest Player Masters – Shivneel Prasad (Lautoka) Best And Fairest Player Premiers – Shanil Darshan (RA) Player of the Tournament Masters – Michael Osbourne (BA) Player of the Tournament Premiers - Zain Mohammed (Nadi) Over 50’s Winner’s – North Side (Trophy in memory of Late Sangeeta Raj Rahim) Masters Winners – Labasa Premiers Winners – RA Happy New Year to everyone from the QFFA Family Curtesy: Vineet Raj

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