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MAY | JUNE 2020

REFLECTING THE SOUTH ASIAN LIFESTYLE

“The sky is the limit for me.”

AFTERMATH

COVID-19

- Nora Fatehi

50

YEARS OF THE

Punjabi

Market WHERE CULTURE MEETS COMMERCE

OF

Simple Lifestyle

Changes TO BOOST YOUR

Immunity

8

TIPS TO

REDUCE YOUR STRESS

a r o N i h e t Fa STORY

EXCLUSIVE

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PUBLISHERS

“The sky is the limit for me.”

AFTERMATH

COVID-19

50

YEARS OF THE

Punjabi

Market

Simple Lifestyle

Changes TO BOOST YOUR

Immunity

8

TIPS TO

REDUCE STRESS

YOUR

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MAY / JUNE 2020

MAY / JUNE 2020

Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

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DARPAN Magazine is published by DARPAN PUBLICATION LTD. DARPAN is a bi-monthly magazine. Any reproduction of the magazine, editorial content, images or advertisement cannot be reproduced or reprinted in any form, without prior written permission of the Publishers. The views expressed by the writers in this publication are not necessarily the views of the Publishers. The Publishers assume no responsibility for errors or omissions. Copyright 2020 DARPAN Publication Ltd. All rights reserved. Publications sales agreement no. 41116014

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Nora

Fatehi 4

Gurvinder S. Hundal Ramneek S. Dhillon EDITED BY

- Nora Fatehi

WHERE CULTURE MEETS COMMERCE

OF

Gurvinder S. Hundal

ISSN: ISSN 1920-4000

FIRST TIME BUYERS

ello readers, we hope you and your families are in good health and doing well. COVID-19 has been a difficult experience for many but we are confident that we will come out of this crisis stronger and more aware of ourselves. Let’s stand in unity and fight this virus together. We are back to work after a short break and happy to present our May/June issue. Our cover features Canadian dancer and Bollywood actress Nora Fatehi. The multifaceted actress is definitely one name that comes to mind when you talk about an outsider making their mark in tinsel-town. Overcoming all the hurdles, sans any godfathers, this gorgeous star is paving her way to success in the entertainment industry with sheer determination, diligent and dedication to her craft. In an exclusive first interview since the world-wide lockdown, she talks about dealing with quarantine, the world post COVID-19 pandemic, her roller coaster journey from Canada to Bollywood, and her future projects. Two of our main features this issue: The impact of COVID-19 and the History of Punjabi Market on Main Street, Vancouver. The world is at war against a strong, unstoppable disease. Sanitizers, masks and gloves are the essential tools in this fight to save humanity. Social distancing, hand washing and sanitizing have become the standard norm. As B.C. attempts to bring things back to normal, the pertinent question remains: What will life look like post COVID-19? Businesses, school, universities and other organizations share their inputs. With the Punjabi Market celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, May 31, 2020, has been declared as Punjabi Market Day. The Punjabi Market is a 3-block commercial district along Main Street between 48th and 51st Avenues that has been a destination for South Asian culture and commerce. As one of the first landmarks of its kind in Canada, the marketplace is the continent’s oldest Little India, commemorating the work of the South Asian business community. Learn a bit about the history of the market and stories from businesses and their plans ahead. The Spotlight section features three youth involved in sports: Canada West Team All-Star basketball player Parm Bains; Student Athlete Hockey Superstar Cassie Shokar; and SFU’s Impact volleyball player Farnaaz Johal. All three of these passionate youngsters are scaling heights in their respective fields and making the South Asian community proud. We hope you enjoy the issue and keep supporting our work. Stay healthy and safe!


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2020

14

M AY | J U N E CONTENTS

Nora Fatehi

STORY

20

IN EVERY ISSUE

54 PICS Youth Trades Programs

8 READER’S REACTION

Transitioning to University

10 DARPAN’S 10

46 YOUTH COLUMN 48 SALUTES

HON. JOHN HORGAN

NalandaWay: When Art Becomes A Way Of Life

SPOTLIGHT 14 Cassie Shokar 16 Parm Bains 18 Farnaaz Johal

LIFESTYLE

88 WEDDING

58 TECH

92 TRAVEL

Gurdev & Anish

Kitchen Gadgets for Healthy Eating

60 RECIPES

Virtual Travel

110 BOX OFFICE

Chef Kumar Mahadevan

Bollywood in COVID-19 Times

70 HEALTH

Simple Lifestyle Changes To Boost Your Immunity

110

76 BEAUTY

Scent - The Invisible Accessory

86 ACTIVITIES

Enjoy Your Backyard this Summer

88

80 FASHION PAGES MADE IN INDIA BIBA Canada

PROFILE 44 Tim Hortons at Punjabi Market

114 GLOBAL SOUTH ASIANS Sadia Siddiqui

AUTO 96

2020 Cadillac Escalade

100 2020 BMW X3M

36

104 2020 Mercedes Benz GLB 108 2020 Toyota AWD PRIUS

104

FEATURES

56 FEATURE

28 FEATURE

Lessons to Learn from Covid-19 & Other Calamities

The Aftermath of COVID 19

36 FEATURE

Punjabi Market: Where Culture meets Commerce

50 FEATURE

66 FEATURE

8 Steps to Deal with HighSpirited Children

8 Tips to Reduce Stress

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MARCH | APRIL 2020

REFLECTING THE SOUTH ASIAN LIFESTYLE

RR

Write to us: editor@darpanmagazine.com or Tag us on social media: @DarpanMagazine & #Darpanmgazine

eaders s eaction

STORY

CELEBRATING

WOMANHOOD Inspiring Stories of South Asian Female Achievers

Celebrating some of the best, the strongest and the most inspirational, this is indeed a fantastic effort by Darpan Magazine. And what a heartfelt message by John Horgan. Happy International Women's Day. (sic) Shruti Prakash/ Facebook

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WOMEN’S SPECIAL COVER Loved the cover article on our community’s successful women. So nice to know that youth and other ladies have some inspiring women as role models.

Darpan magzine is giving all useful. Updates. Regarding govt annoucements. Public operations. And ish is really Doing good keep it up - (sic) Sunny Singh /Facebook

– Rina Singh

Yes Rina, the South Asian community has many exceptional women who are an inspiration to many others. We enjoyed working on the Cover Story and were happy to showcase the 13 women in the Women’s International Day issue.

– DARPAN

IMPORTANCE OF HYGIENE Thank you for writing an article on the importance of hygiene. During this crisis, just a basic guide of hygiene is a lot of help.

– Mr. T.Rai

Re: Yes Mr. Rai, hygiene is of

utmost important, especially during this time of COVID-19. We hope to educate our readers through our medium. – DARPAN

SUSTAINABLE FASHION The sustainable fashion article was very interesting and useful. While staying at home, I was able to repurpose some of my clothes and indirectly save the planet.

– Sunaina Kumari

Re: Glad you liked the article Sunaina. The article

includes simple and eco-friendly tips to put new life into your old or un-used clothes. – DARPAN

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DARPAN’S 4 When can British Columbians expect the Canada-US border to open again?

JOHN HORGAN

HON. PREMIER OF BRITISH COLUMBIA 1 What provisions does the government have in place for September and beyond if there is a resurgence/ second wave of COVID-19?

B.C has been extremely prepared from the start, before we even had a case, and we’re not letting up now. That's why our restart is slow and cautious and is based on those basic principles that we know will protect people: physical distancing, hand washing, and staying home when you’re sick. As we head toward the fall, Dr. Henry and Minister Dix are continuing to make sure that we have enough capacity in our healthcare system to handle more cases. So far, we haven’t needed to use the 271-bed emergency hospital we set up at the Vancouver Convention Centre, but we’re keeping it on stand-by in case it’s needed. We are also going to be ramping up testing and contact tracing heading into flu season to make sure we’re detecting cases and outbreaks quickly. Dr. Henry is keeping a close watch on the situation. We’re going to do everything we need to do to keep people safe and stem the spread of COVID-19. 2 Why did the government decide to open

PHOTO: COURTESY OF BC GOV/FLICKR

schools in june just for one month on a voluntary part time basis and not wait it out till September? In BC, we’ve done an amazing job keeping each other safe and flattening the curve. While we respect Ontario’s decision, our plan for a gradual return to school is based on the very different situation here in BC, and on the sciencebased advice of Dr. Bonnie Henry. For comparison: on the same day in May that Ontario announced almost 430 new confirmed cases of COVID, we had just two here in British Columbia. Dr. Henry has advised that it is safe for us to move to this stage of giving parents the option of putting their kids back in school. If it wasn’t safe to do so, we wouldn’t be opening schools. The health and safety of staff and students is our top priority. At the same time, we need to stay diligent, and that’s why we are looking at a

/ JUNE 2020 10 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

DARPAN

Now is the time to stand together. We can’t allow division and intolerance to take the place of our unity and our determination. We must reject racism and hatred wherever we encounter it. Let’s be kind, be calm and be safe. measured, gradual approach to transitioning more students back into the classroom. We also respect that some parents will have concerns and prefer to keep their kids learning at home - that’s why we are making the return entirely optional. 3 Advocates for child care are calling on the government to accelerate the $10 a day child care promise as a way to help parents return to the workforce during such challenging COVID-19 times. Is that something the government is working on?

Since we were elected nearly three years ago, our govt has been working hard on our childcare plan, making it more affordable and accessible for families. We have invested over $2 billion in childcare, to help families all across the province. Affordable childcare is a key priority for our government, and the COVID-19 pandemic has shown how critical it is for families and for the economy. During Phase 1 of our Restart Plan, we invested $38 million to ensure essential service workers could have access to child care. Now that we are in Phase 2 of BC’s recovery, we continue to work hard to make these important investments in childcare, so parents can get back to work. TM

Our top priority is keeping British Columbians safe. The situation in the United States is very concerning and our hearts go out to our neighbours to the south. We would certainly need to see a real improvement there before we felt comfortable with the federal government opening the border to non-essential travel. At the start of this pandemic, our government successfully called on Ottawa to close the US border to non-essential travel in order to protect British Columbians. We also took the exceptional step of setting up our own border screening program to make sure every person arriving in B.C. from out of the country has a self-isolation plan. Parliamentary Secretary Ravi Kahlon played a key role in getting those supports up and running and we are happy to see other jurisdictions are now copying our approach. In the first five weeks of the program, we checked over 37,000 people’s self-isolation plans and made over 26,100 follow up calls to make sure people are self-isolating. 124 people are currently in quarantine at hotels. Borders may be a federal responsibility, but we’re going to keep doing everything we need to do to keep people in B.C. safe. 5 More than 1,700 complaints have been filed with the (BCNU) since March 20 from nurses who say there isn’t enough PPE to protect them while working during the pandemic. How concerned is the government about the nurses' safety and what can be done to address the shortage of PPE?

Healthcare workers are the frontline in our battle against COVID-19. They have been courageous in responding to this unprecedented crisis– their safety is our top concern. We have maintained a steady stream of PPE for healthcare workers, and continue to actively source PPE, knowing that there’s going to be more demand as we carefully restart our economy. We’re pursuing every approach to increase supply. This includes working with our federal partners on national bulk purchases, building partnerships with new suppliers, and conserving and managing existing supply. Before they reach the front line, every individual piece of PPE put into circulation in B.C.’s healthcare system has to meet strict standards. We would never ask a healthcare worker to go to work without providing them the appropriate protection. 6 British Columbia's economy is heavily dependent on tourism. Has there been any discussion with the Federal Government and the airline industry regarding re-opening air travel? When can British Columbians expect air travel to resume?

Every sector of the BC economy has been impacted by the COVID-19 sector, and our government knows that the tourism industry has been particularly hard hit. BC’s Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Lisa Beare, has been in regular contact with tourism companies to discuss the challenges they’re experiencing and their ideas for recovery. Our government is also working collaboratively with the federal government on how best to support the tourism industry. International tourism is expected to resume in Phase 4 of BC’s Restart Plan, which will begin when a vaccine is discovered or there is community immunity. Over the summer I encourage British Columbians to plan on taking part in all of BC’s wonderful tourism attractions, as they carefully open up again. We must support each other as much as possible in these difficult times.


7 With nearly half of all COVID-19 deaths in Canada linked to long-term care homes, what is the government doing to make seniors feel safe and avoid outbreaks at long-term care facilities?

This pandemic has been incredibly hard on seniors and their families. Many are scared and feeling alone - we are working hard to protect and support them. British Columbians have stepped up across the province, staying home and practicing physical distancing to protect seniors and those most vulnerable. At the same time, Dr. Henry and Minister Dix have put in strong infection control measures to protect seniors in long term care and assisted living facilities. In particular, Dr. Henry ordered that staff in long-term care, assisted living, stand-alone extended care hospitals and provincial mental health facilities should be working only at one facility. That’s one of the most important things we can do to protect our seniors and those who care for them by helping to reduce the risk of virus transmission between facilities. I also encourage seniors - whether you live in long-term care or not - who are feeling alone or who need support to call 2-1-1 to get connected to volunteers who can help deliver groceries or just chat on the phone. We need to practice physical distancing while also masking sure that our elders feel less alone. 8 There has been a wave of anti-Asian racist sentiment with attacks and assaults on transit and in the public. Two MLAs Bowinn Ma and Anne Kang both spoke candidly against the attacks. What is the government doing to address these hate crimes?

Reflecting SouthAsian Lifestyle

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I’ve been saddened, angry and disgusted by the rise in racism. Hate crimes and racism have no place in our multicultural and vibrant province. Racism is a virus. It must be stopped. We must all challenge racist remarks when we hear them. We cannot allow stereotyping and scapegoating to stand. And we must report hate crimes and racist incidents when we see them happen in our communities or places of work. Our government is committed to fighting racism, which is why we established the Resilience BC anti-racism network last fall. This network connects people and communities throughout the province with information, supports and training to assist them in addressing racism Our diversity and inclusivity are what make our province so special and we must work together to protect that. 9 The City of Vancouver has announced they are out $2 billion and they have reached out to the Province for help. What sort of help can the City of Vancouver as well as other municipalities who have reached out to the Province expect?

This pandemic is causing significant financial challenges for municipalities. In April, we announced immediate relief to help communities manage cash-flow pressures so they have more cash on hand to continue to deliver the services people count on right now. We’ll be continuing to listen to local governments. As with everything in our COVID-19 Action Plan, we’ll be reviewing this as we go, to see where we’re at with the pandemic. If needs change or this goes longer, we’ll take a look at that. We have also called on the federal government to support our municipalities with important operational funding, such as public transit. It’s going to take hard work from both the provincial and local governments, but we’ll get through this together.

Any message to all British Columbians in the midst of COVID-19. 10

Now is the time to stand together. We can’t allow division and intolerance to take the place of our unity and our determination. We must reject racism and hatred wherever we encounter it. Let’s be kind, be calm and be safe.

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Shokar is 5-5 on the season with two shutouts and an outstanding 1.54 GAA and a .934 save percentage.

CASSIE SHOKAR Student Athlete Superstar By Harjan Padda

C

assie Shokar is a promising young goaltender for the Mount Royal University Cougars in the Canada West conference of U Sports Women’s Ice Hockey. Cassie is 5-5 on the season with two shutouts and an outstanding 1.54 GAA and a .934 save percentage. Cassie watched hockey her entire childhood, watching Canucks game with her dad. She also enjoyed playing road hockey and indoor hockey with her brother, which further developed her passion for the sport. From this point on, she knew she wanted to play this at a competitive level, driven by her love of the game. The position of goaltender in hockey is arguably the toughest position to play on the ice. Cassie chose

/ JUNE 2020 14 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

this path as a young kid, largely due to her admiration of former Vancouver Canucks legend Roberto Luongo. She shares how “he always looked like he was having fun in net, and this inspired me to want to reach that level.” After grade 12, Cassie made the decision to keep playing onto the next level. Her passion was strong and she had faith in herself to carry her play to the university stage. Playing locally throughout her childhood, Cassie made a big decision to go play for the NCAA Division III Oswego State Lakers in New York. She made a lot of friends and memories as she learned what the competitive

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landscape of collegiate hockey was like. The key to success that Cassie learned abroad is that mental toughness is critical. “It is imperative to stay positive throughout your journey. There are little things which could throw you off, but you need to learn from any hardships and stay committed to your goals,” explains Cassie. The competition stiffened and the game moved a lot quicker once she started playing collegiately. Despite the challenges, Cassie has remained positive in her mindset and has thoroughly enjoyed her experience. The life of a student athlete can be very taxing, but


DARPAN SPOTLIGHT

Cassie has taken it all in stride. It was a bit of a challenge at first for finding study and homework time between the hockey events. Time management was the main skill Cassie learned to master as a student athlete which has been essential in her adaptation. She recalls how “the best method for me was to get as much studying and homework done as early as possible to avoid tight deadlines with hockey time conflicts, this really eased any school stress from procrastinating.� This has helped Cassie to stay on top of her classes, do well in them, and keep her head clear for hockey. Cassie grew up playing minor hockey with boys until her midget year, which was challenging. On top of that, being an Indo-Canadian female pushed her into an even smaller minority group leaving her to fight harder than anyone to make teams and be successful. Cassie hopes to be an influencer for young Indo-Canadian girls out there who may not think they can make it in the sport. Women’s hockey is starting to grow, and with this increased exposure, Cassie hopes to see more girls of our community embracing the sport and taking it to the next level. Her advice to the girls out there is “to not let anything get in your way, to be strong and confident. There will be hard times, but you need to push forward and keep working hard.� Her last piece of advice is to smile and believe in yourself. Cassie Shokar’s next step after another few years of university is undetermined. Careerwise, her dream is to become a lawyer. “I want to make an impact on the world and help others, it is something I’ve always wanted to do,� declares Cassie. Given what we have seen from her in terms of hard work and perseverance, there is no doubt that Cassie will continue to hit her goals and make her mark on the world. Photos: Adrian Shellard

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P

arm Bains just completed a historic season for the University of Fraser Valley (UFV) Cascades basketball team. Bains posted a team high 19.4 points-per-game, good for 4th in the Canada West. He also led the team in assists-per-game with 4.5, at 5th best in the conference. His long range shooting was his most prominent stat as he not only led his team, but the entire Canada West with 82 threepointers made at a rate of 3.9 per game. His season put him at #1 in UFV history for three-pointers made and 3rd all-time in Canada West. Bains also holds the highest career threes-pergame average in Canada West history. His all-around play earned him a spot as a Canada West First-Team All-Star.

Canada West First Team All-Star By Harjan Padda

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BAINS

/ JUNE 2020 16 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

DARPAN

Bains grew up playing whatever his older brother Paul did. When his brother made the switch from soccer to basketball while Bains was in the third grade, their family got a hoop for the home. From that point on, Bains chose basketball as his sport. He looks back to when he “was in grade 10 when I realized my basketball career could take me beyond high school and I set my sights on playing at the university level.” He stayed committed to his goals of always reaching the next level. Once he graduated from high school, he was a walkon for the Douglas College team. Then he went to Capilano University before hitting his goal of playing U Sports basketball with UFV for the past two seasons to close his collegiate career. This long, complex journey had Bains proving himself to make each new team. He explains how he “just needed someone to believe in me to give me the opportunities to succeed, and once I got my shots I was able to prove that I belonged.” In his first year at UFV, Bains made the roster as a redshirt practice player. He just needed a shot to prove that he could make it. That moment came in 2017 as a player had quit the team which opened a spot up for Bains. Once injuries took over the team, he made the most of his first real opportunity to play big minutes and put up 33 points on 10-16 shooting with 7 three-pointers in his first full game. Looking back, Bains reflects how “that game is definitely my favourite memory playing basketball.

TM


DARPAN SPOTLIGHT After all the climbing I had the chance to really prove my worth at the highest level in the country and I just went out there and put it all out on the floor.” Bains has always worked hard to get better, but once he was able to prove to his coaches that he could be trusted, his career has skyrocketed. He really appreciates what his coach at UFV, Adam Friesen, was able to do for his confidence. Bains was never an erratic player, but he shares how “once the coaches placed their trust in me, I was given more rope to make plays. I made the most of this opportunity and the results have definitely been outstanding.” He also credits his trainer Harp Grewal of 3Seed Training, who has been instrumental in the progress he has made over the past several years.

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Bains “studied players like Stephen Curry thoroughly as his ability to fluidly get his great shots off in any situation was incredible. I wanted to emulate this and developed my shot

Photos: Dan Kinvig - UFV Athletics

accordingly. Throughout his career, Bains’ main trait was quickness and speed to get through the defense. His three-point prowess was not developed until he got to UFV. He wanted to become a better shooter as he recognized the faults in his own mechanics. He “studied players like Stephen Curry thoroughly as his ability to fluidly get his great shots off in any situation was incredible. I wanted to emulate this and developed my shot accordingly.” As evidenced by his historical accolades, this work paid off tremendously. Bains’s next steps are to take his basketball career as long as he can at a professional level. As for his life outside of basketball, he plans to finish his business degree and then see what happens after basketball and go from there. Needless to say, Parm Bains will surely succeed on the court and off the court in the future as he has shown his dedication and commitment to constant improvement and achieving all of his goals.

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An 'Impact'ful Player

FARNAAZ JOHAL BY HARJAN PADDA

PHOTOS: KENDRA HO & PAUL YATES - SFU ATHLETICS

F

arnaaz Johal has broken out this year as an impact player for the Simon Fraser University (SFU) volleyball team. She finished the year 5th on the team in Kills per set with 1.48 and 5th on the team in points-perserve with 2.06. Farnaaz just completed her 3rd year as a redshirt sophomore with the team and this as her first year where she featured as an important player and was a true starter by the end of the year. Growing up, Farnaaz was more of a soccer player. When her family moved to Penticton, that’s where she picked up the sport of volleyball in 8th grade. She comments how “it was a natural fit given my height and athleticism, and I really enjoyed it.”

/ JUNE 2020 18 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

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It wasn’t until Farnaaz was in 10th grade when she started playing at a high level and sought to bring herself to the next level. She made the UBCO club team which was an elite club team in the sport. “I knew I could make the team as I did have the talent, but being a year younger than the others was a disadvantage. Getting the call that I made the team was incredible,” recalls Farnaaz. She also played on the BC provincial team through her last three years of high school while representing the national team in the summer of 2015. In Penticton, there really wasn’t much in terms of high level competition or clubs for volleyball. Once she made the UBCO team, she had to decide between volleyball and basketball as her sport and went with volleyball. She shared that “once I made that decision, I never looked back. Some of my greatest memories have come from that team and I have loved every minute of it.” Her athletic prowess is evidenced by her multi-sport talents, but she was not always seen this way. In grade 9, Farnaaz tried out for the BC team and figured she was likely to make the team. However, she did not make the team and was told that while she did have good height, her quickness was lacking. She reflects feeling “gutted by this as it was a major setback for my career. But I just used this as fuel to train harder and go all-in to strengthen my game.” She made a commitment to improve her speed and athleticism, and used this motivation and improvement to propel herself to the national team the next year. In 2016, Farnaaz's team made the provincials as a lower ranked team but had a great tournament to


DARPAN SPOTLIGHT land the silver medal. From there, they further defied expectations by performing strongly in nationals. Although an ankle injury hampered her tournament play, that year really reinforced her passion for the sport. Farnaaz reminisces “how the atmospheres of the tournaments were amazing, and being able to prove ourselves as a strong team just made the journey that much better.” The student athlete life is certainly challenging, but it has also been very rewarding for Farnaaz. At SFU, Farnaaz is currently studying marketing, and the difficulty of student athlete life is the requirement to be enrolled in 12 credits per semester while also having consistent volleyball schedules.

“I knew I could make the team as I did have the talent, but

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being a year younger than the others was a disadvantage. Getting the call that I made the team was incredible,” recalls Farnaaz. In the fall, the team plays two games a week plus practices throughout the whole term while the spring term has daily 7:00 AM practices, which really constrains the time available to handle full courseloads. Despite these challenges, Farnaaz has lived up to the task and maintains that “this student athlete experience has improved my time management skills while also making me a tougher and well-rounded person.” Farnaaz hopes to remain involved in volleyball in the long term whether that is playing professionally or continuing to coach. Educationally she has her sights set on law school or perhaps obtaining her MBA as she continues her studies. Her immediate goal is to build off of her recent year and make her mark at a high level for the team in her last two years at SFU and help her team win and flourish. Given her propensity for success, we will definitely hear of great things to come for Farnaaz both on and off the court for years to come.

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/ JUNE 2020 20 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

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COVER STORY

Nora

Fatehi

“The sky is the limit for me”

A

Bollywood, they say, is a tough nut to crack, especially if you are an outsider. However, the good part is, if you are talented and devoted to your craft, you can’t go unnoticed either. The multifaceted Nora Fatehi is definitely one name that comes to mind when you talk about an outsider making their mark in tinsel-town. Overcoming all the hurdles, sans any godfathers, this gorgeous actress — who is born and raised in Canada — is paving her way to success in

the entertainment industry with sheer determination, diligent and dedication to her craft. In an exclusive first interview since the world-wide lockdown, the versatile artiste talks about dealing with quarantine, the world post COVID-19 pandemic, her roller coaster journey from Canada to Bollywood, and her future projects. What’s more, the talented gal says, “This is just the tip of the iceberg. There is so much more I am going to do.”

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Photos Courtesy of Nora Fatehi & Mohamed Saad

BY SHWETA KULKARNI

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COVER STORY because I have other things to worry about in life that are more important, and I think in the fast-paced life we are living in, we really did not notice that. It took something like this to bring back our focus on what really matters. While I don’t miss work as I am working from home, I do worry about the status of our world in the coming future.

you think QDo the world would be a different place post the COVID-19 pandemic?

Yes. Not just post COVID 19, I would say COVID-19 is just the tip of the iceberg, the world will be a different place post a lot of things that are happening around us. As you can see, they are unfolding right in front of our eyes and they are not just specific to

been over 70 QItdayshassince India is under the necessitated lockdown, how are you dealing with this quarantine period? Are you missing work?

To be honest, the initial days of quarantine were confusing. I was just trying to gather my thoughts and educate myself to understand what was happening globally. There was a lot of misinformation going around, and the unknown is always scary, so at that point, there was a lot of fear and confusion. So, what I did first was to understand what was happening worldwide and what to expect in the coming days, weeks and months. Post that I had to accustom myself to staying alone in the house for so long. And it took me back to my Canada days, which were like just hustling in the house, doing my own

/ JUNE 2020 22 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

cooking, cleaning and just taking care of myself. So, it was nice. Then I had to convert my work into work from home, which was not hard to do as I am not one dimensional. I can do work on social media, I can do work via brand posts, I can do work through engaging with my fans and followers. It is just the idea of not being able to meet your loved ones, and knowing that if anything was going to happen, you will not be able to reunite with them — that was very difficult to accept. I have friends whose family members were extremely ill, they were dying… and I needed to be there for them, even if it was just through phone and a lot of energy was spent there. I can say that mentally, I was rethinking my priorities and what I feel is important in my life. And did I miss work? No,

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the United States of America… they are all interconnected, and a lot of countries are following suit. This tells you that there is a sort of awakening energy that’s happening globally, where the subconscious mind of a lot of people is almost waking up from a certain state of being and this is sure to cause an indefinite change in the world. I feel there will be a huge change politically, economically and socially. I can’t say much, but I do feel this is the time to educate yourself about your country’s politics, your economical infrastructure, and even your nation’s history. There are a lot of things in history that repeat themselves, so I always say to people to educate themselves about the history of their country and others too. It is important to understand things like imperialism, globalisation, colonisation… and then you’ll understand how our lives are connected to what’s happening globally. I feel this is the time to educate ourselves and be ready for what’s to come. Be ready for the change to come.

have heard that QWe you are also doing your bit to help people during this COVID-19 crisis; can you please tell us more about it?

Yes, my capability is not so large but whatever I can, I am doing it. We started an initiative where we are donating PPE kits to hospitals across India that don’t have enough supplies for their medical workers. I am also working on something on the side and hopefully, if it takes off, it will be a very good initiative. We are just trying to do our best, to be active in our society as much as possible. for what’s to come. Be ready for the change to come.


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COVER STORY

Q

badly do QHow you think this

global crisis is going to impact the film industry in general? COVID-19 pandemic? I was not thinking how this global crisis was going to change the film industry, I was just thinking about how the world is going to change in general. If I were to talk about it… there are a lot of restrictions that are going to happen, how things are going to be shot, how sets are going to be maintained, how many people are going to come on sets etc. Projects are halted, films have been shelved, films are being sold off to OTT platforms… So it is a change that is happening already. It could be temporary and things could go back to normal. But the way we create content will have to change for some time for sure.

/ JUNE 2020 24 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

I would define my whole journey from Canada to Bollywood to Bombay… as a hustle. It has just been a complete hustle, a roller coaster ride. I have done everything. From films to small roles to supporting roles to music videos, to South (Indian) films, reality shows… I have done everything. I feel it’s amazing, cause as an artist I got to experience so much and I carry that experience with me. It makes me who I am today, and it has given me that knowledge about all those nuances that are necessary for an artist to succeed in an industry like Bollywood. At the same time, I do appreciate the fact that my social media journey has also helped me a lot. The kind of things I have been doing on social media from day one and until now — you know building my YouTube channel, making my own international music, Can you tell us being an independent producer more about your and singer, and venturing into character in the film different markets outside of Bhuj: The Pride Of India… it’s been literally a India? roller coaster and I am just so I am really excited about my proud of this whole journey. It’s role in the film because I play still ongoing and it’s still the an Indian spy, who is placed in beginning of it. I wouldn’t have Pakistan for a mission. It’s an had it any other way. I am so action-packed role, and I play a lucky to be able to have these strong confident woman, who is kinds of experiences, to have very charismatic. My character is such a diverse journey that I am extremely crucial to the story and having right now. the plot. So, I am excited about my role. I think it’s an interesting However, for an character and it will have a very outsider with no good positive impact on my godfathers and no career. connections in the

Q

Q

Speaking about your career, in less than six years you have carved an impressive niche for yourself in the industry through your music videos, dances and acting chops… How would you define this journey from Canada to tinseltown?

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industry, the journey definitely mustn’t have been an easy one. So, what was your biggest hurdle when you started your career and how did you tackle it? I would say the biggest hurdle would have been— to be taken seriously. The minute they hear that you are from outside, from

another country — that’s a bit of a hurdle. That and the language. I came to India not knowing a word of Hindi, so I had to learn from scratch and I had to learn quickly because I didn’t want to waste time. So, I would say being an outsider and not knowing the language was a big hurdle in the beginning but I tackled that real quick. First, I adapted to my environment and understood that I need to integrate with the nuances here. I think integration is important and people who don’t accept it are the ones who always stick out like a sore thumb. They don’t go far because you look like you are resisting. I didn’t want to be someone who is resisting. So, I immediately got myself a Hindi teacher and spent a lot of time and effort to learn the language as quickly as possible and I think that played an important part in my growth at the beginning of my career.

point in QAtyourwhatcareer, did you realize that you were rising to fame and how was that feeling?

I always thought I was famous (laughs). I always had this idea in my head that — I am my own movie and I am the star of my movie. Having said that, I think the turning point in my career came when the song ‘Naah’ with Harrdy Sandhu released (2017) and broke all records. It was the first song in India to do five million in one day on YouTube. We got a lot of attention, especially me. The way I was portrayed in the music video, the way I performed, my look… everything was appreciated and talked about. I just knew at that time that I am close to hitting that opportunity and I am going to become that girl. After, ‘Naah’ I shot for ‘Dilbar’ and the moment it released, after 24 hours, I knew that’s it — I made it. I knew I had arrived and this was the moment where I go right


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since you QEver have set foot in

singer, you are also an incredible dancer; the industry, be it your how did you fall in love dancing or acting – with dancing? Who is one has always seen your inspiration and you push the envelope what were your early every time, what’s influences? the process you go I fell in love with music, through to prepare movement and dance ever since yourself each time?

I fell in love with music, movement and dance ever since I could remember. It could have been when I was three, or could have been when I was still in my mother’s womb… to be honest, there isn’t a correct answer to that, all I can say is that I had been in love with it always.” / JUNE 2020 26 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

or left. It was the time, where I use the opportunity to become something, to become a sensation, become an inspiration and take it and multiply it to many many more other moments like this, or I just go left and take this 15 minute of fame and disappear. I didn’t allow the latter to happen. I seized that moment and made it into other moments. I went ahead and sang and produced the Arabic version of ‘Dilbar’ really quickly, released it in Morocco and opened a new market for myself. I made sure that the wave I was riding was not just the wave, but the entire ocean. I immediately signed Street Dancer and Batla House, which had me acting and performing. I did a huge song in Batla House — ‘O Saki Saki’,

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The process I go through mentally is that I need to prove myself to everybody. I need to prove myself to the audience, the industry, and to me. So, I need to push the envelope and I need to do things that I may find tough and difficult. I never allowed myself to be in a comfortable space. If I don’t come to people with a ‘wow’ factor then I would be easily replaced and easily pushed out. It is hard when you don’t have a backing, don’t come from an industry family, don’t have any godfathers… So, when you have none of these stuff behind you, then you need to rely on your skills and your talent. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. There is so much more I am going to do, and I am always going to work towards enhancing my skills and try to come with a surprise factor. The sky is the limit for me. I have a lot of facets to me that I haven’t yet explored. My overall goal is to become an international artist. which went on to become another explosion, exactly a year after Dilbar’s release. So, a lot of things happened post ‘Dilbar’. But again, only because of my drive and my hunger to not allow people to think that I am here for just a moment and I am leaving. I wanted people to believe in me and believe that I am here to stay.

from QApart being an actress,

I could remember. It could have been when I was three, or could have been when I was still in my mother’s womb…to be honest, there isn’t a correct answer to that, all I can say is that I had been in love with it always. But I was never encouraged to pursue it. It wasn’t like I grew up thinking — ‘Oh, I want to be a dancer.’ I always thought that I want to be a performer, an artist; so, whether that included dancing, or acting, or doing comedy, or singing or whatever — I wanted to do it all. However, I did have a lot of inspiration… Shakira, JLO and Beyonce inspired me and influenced me immensely. Then I started watching Bollywood icons like Helen and Madhuri Dixit and I would watch all of their stuff. I’d be so influenced in a more cultural, exotic way and then I would be influenced by my cultural dancing. As I grew older, I would search for famous dancers worldwide and learn from them. I wasn’t allowed to learn technically, as I was pushed towards academics more… So I found different ways to explore my artistic abilities. Whether it was through extracurricular activities at the school or the dance club, learning from classmates, or being in my room and practising in front of the mirror through YouTube videos… that is how I built myself as a professional performer. I always thought that I am just preparing myself for the day, where I will be in front of people in a cinema hall or on the big screen or at an award show


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stage — where I will be performing in front of thousands of people. I always knew that day would come someday.

what apart from dancing QSo, and acting keeps you busy? Apart from dancing and acting, music keeps me busy. Ever since I produced and sang my first song — the Arabic ‘Dilbar’, which became a huge hit in Morocco, in the Middle East and other parts of North Africa, I have become hungrier to make own music and release it on my YouTube channel. After ‘Dilbar’, I also produced – ‘Pepeta’. I collaborated with an international artist called Rayvanny and we made this diverse track, which appealed to East Africa, North Africa, some parts of Europe and The Emirates. It did well in India as well, which I didn’t expect. The success of ‘Pepeta’ has got me excited to make more independent music. I also do smaller scale stuff like my skits and my comedy stuff on social media. I love doing that stuff and it makes my fans happy.

Q

Lastly, what advice would you like to give to aspiring Canadian artists who want to be a part of the Bollywood industry? Well, people who are aspiring to join Bollywood or Hollywood or any other industry in the world —I would say just be mentally prepared for the struggle and the roller coaster ride. You got to come with thick skin, really thick skin and just be very motivated because if you are not motivated then anything anyone says can rattle you up or divert your attention. Just know what your goal is, keep your eye on the prize and come ready. Come ready for anything that might hit you and just don’t lose your focus. Be prepared to learn, keep your mind open to new things, adapt yourself and be ready for competition. Because there will always be someone prettier than you, someone more talented than you, someone more connected than you, someone more financially stronger than you, there will always be someone more than you… So be ready for that. Lastly, don’t give up on your dream. If you know deep inside in your gut that this is what you need to be and this is what you are made for, then don’t ever give up.

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DARPAN FEATURE

The Aftermath of

COVID-19 BY PETRINA D’SOUZA

/ JUNE 2020 28 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

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A

few months ago, the world was hit by a virus that has changed the way we live. The world is at war against a strong, unstoppable disease. Sanitizers, masks and gloves are the essential tools in this fight to save humanity. Social distancing, hand washing and sanitizing have become the standard norm. As of May 22, 2020, British Columbia confirmed 2,507 cases of coronavirus disease and 155 deaths. A total of 2,042 people have recovered with the number of active cases being 310. There are now 41 COVID-19 patients in B.C. hospitals, including eight in intensive care. “The COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for all of us. It has changed the way we work, learn, and shop, and it’s changed the way we interact with the people around us,” says Patty Hajdu, Canada’s Minister of Health.

What will the future look like? The Canadian government has done a good job in curbing the spread of the virus throughout the country. Not just through proper healthcare, but also by helping people and businesses that have lost jobs or income, with the Canada Emergency Response Benefit and programs like the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy and loans through the Canada Emergency Business Account. Sadly, along with threatening our well-being, coronavirus has also broken down our economy and caused a massive loss in terms of workforce and production. “Canada, in general, is in the midst of the worst economic downturn it has experienced in decades. The shutdown of nonessential businesses and the physical distancing measures in place across the country to slow the spread of COVID-19 have brought activity in many industries to a near standstill,” says Anita Huberman, CEO of the Surrey Board of Trade. From the outset, B.C. established clear guidance, transparency and an evidence-based approach to fight against COVID-19. B.C. has created a Restart Plan that lays out a series of steps that will protect people and re-open the economy. The province is already on its second

The COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for all of us. It has changed the way we work, learn, and shop, and it’s changed the way we interact with the people around us,” says Patty Hajdu, Canada’s Minister of Health. phase of the Restart Plan which allows some businesses to reopen with restrictions. As B.C. attempts to bring things back to normal, the pertinent question remains: What will life look like post COVID-19? B.C.’s health sector continues to fight strongly against COVID-19; immense credit and gratitude goes to all the healthcare and essential workers who are putting their lives at risk to stabilize the situation. “Once the World Health Organization declared the Covid outbreak to be a pandemic, the Canadian response was swift in instituting self isolation, shutting down non-essential businesses and travel to contain the spread. By flattening the infection curve, this allowed our healthcare system to not be overwhelmed and effectively utilize our resources to treat patients,” says Dr. Jaspinder Ghuman, M.D., CCFP(EM), Staff ER Physician at Surrey Memorial Hospital, adding that making capacity within hospitals

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DARPAN FEATURE

“We took from the experiences of other countries who were already going through the crisis and adapted. We quickly built tents to triage and test patient presenting to our hospital. We separated our emergency department into potential Covid and non Covid zones, to reduce risk for patients.” Dr. Jaspinder Ghuman, M.D., CCFP(EM), Staff ER Physician at Surrey Memorial Hospital and building testing centers was all ground level work. “We took from the experiences of other countries who were already going through the crisis and adapted. We quickly built tents to triage and test patient presenting to our hospital. We separated our emergency department into potential Covid and non Covid zones, to reduce risk for patients.” Minster Hajdu is grateful for the care and compassion of health care workers every day, but even more so during a global pandemic. “Their dedication and bravery are getting us through this pandemic, and we owe them a debt of

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gratitude. We also need to recognize the immense contributions of other front line workers, like those keeping the lights on or helping us put food on our table.” Terra Scheer, who manages communications and stewardship for Langley Memorial Hospital Foundation (LMHF), says, “We are proud to be part of such an incredible team. Every day, we see every member of the staff – from nurses and physicians right down to the security and housekeeping – doing everything they can to help patients and the community.” Dr. Ghuman, also a Clinical Associate Professor at the University of British Columbia, is impressed by the ingenuity of human beings responding to this crisis. “The ability of our society to maintain essential channels such as the food, and businesses to come together and shift manufacturing towards Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), ventilators and alcohol for sanitizing. Definitely, our healthcare system in Canada was overwhelmed but we were fortunate enough to fare better than many other countries.” During this crisis, the community has come together to fight the pandemic in unison. Numerous people are helping those in need through donations, supporting local businesses or positive support. The LMHF is overwhelmed by the generosity shown over the past few months. “Langley residents and businesses have stepped up in a big way to ensure our care teams have the resources they need to feel confident and well supported in their role during the local health care response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” shares Scheer. Minister Hajdu continues to urge people to practice physical distancing. “We know it is difficult, but it is necessary. We’ve made great progress in flattening the curve, but we can’t stop now. Together, we will get through this.” With social distancing being of great importance, will virtual healthcare gain prominence post the pandemic? Dr. Ghuman comments that through virtual care has been around for many years, there really wasn’t a widespread adoption. “However, given the current crisis and improvement in virtual platforms, physicians have been able to continue to provide care in a safe environment. Looking into the future my TM

Canada, in general, is in the midst of the worst economic downturn it has experienced in decades. The shutdown of non-essential businesses and the physical distancing measures in place across the country to slow the spread of COVID-19 have brought activity in many industries to a near standstill.” Anita Huberman, CEO of the Surrey Board of Trade


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Jonathan Driver Vice President Academic and Provost pro tem at SFU belief is there will be a role for virtual medicine for certain types of care such as follow up visits that don’t require an in person examination, prescription refills, mental health and care for individuals who have difficulty with mobility. However in-person visits will continue to play a very central role as virtual care will not be able to replace the human contact essential to a patient and health provider relationship.” According to Dr. Ghuman, the government’s top priorities should be towards ensuring a secure supply of PPE for hospitals and community-based health providers. “Making sure that we have enough capacity to test for Covid infection for contact tracing and serological testing to see who has been infected in the past. Testing, development of new medicines and vaccinations will be crucial in getting society towards normality.” He adds that it is also time to be innovative and utilize new technology such as artificial intelligence in our battle against Covid. “Finally, governments will also need to spend more to increase the capacity of health systems to catch up on all the surgeries and specialist referrals that were interrupted because of the Covid outbreak. This will also require a lot of innovation and use of new technology to make it feasible.”

THANK YOU We are so grateful to the community for supporting our hospitals and front-line teams during this COVID-19 pandemic. With your help, we will continue to invest in life-changing health care, right here in Surrey. surreyhospitalfoundation.com

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School will look very different than it did before spring break – we’ll have smaller class sizes, limited movement between classes, more stringent cleaning and personal hygiene protocols, and new classroom routines including revised seating as we all keep our distance and stay safe,” says Ritinder Matthew, Communications Manager, Surrey Schools. Due to COVID-19, B.C.’s education sector has had a major transformation. Under the direction of B.C.’s Provincial Health Officer, in-person instruction in public and independent K-12 schools was suspended on March 21, 2020, as a precautionary measure to limit the further spread of COVID-19. “For our district, this announcement came during the first week of spring break so many of our school-based staff were on vacation. We spent the following weeks planning our continuation of learning strategy, which saw the development of resources to support staff and students with virtual and remote learning, including the launch of www. surreyschoolsone.ca,” says Ritinder Matthew, Communications Manager, Surrey Schools. The Surrey School District also organized childcare for the children of essential service workers, and adapted programs to continue supporting some of the more vulnerable learners.

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B.C. schools reopened on a voluntary, part-time basis on June 1, 2020, and will eventually return to a full normal in September. Surrey schools will begin a gradual return to in-class instruction using a staged approach. The district will be following the updated health and safety protocols laid out by the B.C. Center for Disease Control for school settings. “So school will look very different than it did before spring break – we’ll have smaller class sizes, limited movement between classes, more stringent cleaning and personal hygiene protocols, and new classroom routines including revised seating as we all keep our distance and stay safe,” informs Mathew. She points out that some students prefer virtual learning, while others miss face-to-face interactions. In June, Surrey district will have a hybrid model that will see classrooms continue with virtual and remote learning, with additional in-class instruction available for families who choose that option. “I think the important factor to keep in mind is that it is ultimately a parent’s decision to send their child to school. We will still be continuing online instruction, and in-class instruction is optional. Parents who choose not to send their child to school will not be penalized.” Education has gone through a rapid adaptation thanks to the pandemic, and everyone has had to learn how to work with a remote instruction model. COVID-19 has profoundly impacted the post-secondary community. “Universities are expecting significant declines in their TM

Universities are expecting significant declines in their enrollment numbers, which may in turn lead to service cuts and layoffs. Students are in precarious financial situations, as many will not be able to work like they normally would in order to save up for their tuition.” Grace Dupasquier, ChairpersonElect of Alliance of British Columbia Students


DARPAN FEATURE enrollment numbers, which may in turn lead to service cuts and layoffs. Students are in precarious financial situations, as many will not be able to work like they normally would in order to save up for their tuition,” says Grace Dupasquier, Chairperson-Elect of Alliance of British Columbia Students. So will students prefer sticking to online learning? “The feedback we’ve heard from students is that while in some cases online learning has given them a bit of scheduling flexibility, for most, a return to in-person classes is greatly preferred. Most students largely feel that online learning – despite the truly impressive ways instructors and professors have been able to pivot their material to an online environment – is not providing the same value as in-person instruction,” answers Dupasquier who believes things will likely not go completely back to normal until everyone’s safety can be fully guaranteed. From a university perspective, SFU had to deal with challenges such as transitioning to different ways of learning and working, postponing the in-person Convocation ceremony and honouring it virtually, and cancelling or postponing all other in-person campus events, among others. The university has quickly transitioned to new ways of learning and working in order to prioritize the health and safety of the university community. SFU is offering remote classes over the summer. “In the fall most classes will continue to be delivered through remote methods to provide certainty for students and instructors, safety for those with higher levels of health risks, and access to learning for students who cannot travel to BC at this time,” informs Jonathan Driver, Vice President Academic and Provost pro tem at SFU. If allowed by government and health authorities, and provided that personal health and safety can be maintained, SFU will offer a limited amount of in-person courses and activities in the fall, where the learning objectives cannot easily be replicated through remote instruction. Huberman believes that for businesses, it will be a new economic paradigm. “They will need to look at physical distancing measures within each business or organizational space, cash flow implications and sustainability, technology and innovation processes, workforce upskilling/reskilling, and supply chain (vendor) needs.” Also, according to parliamentary budget officer Yves Giroux’s report, the federal deficit for the year will likely hit $252.1 billion as a

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DARPAN FEATURE result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This could mean that the future generation will have to bear the brunt of Covid-19’s economic impact. “Canada's Finance Minister has said that there are no plans to increase taxes to pay for the roll out of monetary support programs to Canadians. However, I believe the federal government, like all other levels of government, will need to apply different surcharges to services or re-pay their debt somehow, unless other revenue sources can be found through economic projects that will create jobs,” says Huberman. With B.C. government’s nod to reopening small businesses and retail sector, Guildford Town Centre (GTC) has implemented a series of preventive health and safety measures, including educating tenants and visitors on respiratory and handwashing hygiene, hand sanitizer dispensers at designated locations, increased frequency of housekeeping practices in the common areas, and directional signage and floor markers in place to ensure appropriate physical distancing. “We have also paused some of

COVID-19 impact on airline industry Since its onset, the impact of COVID-19 has had a devastating effect on Canada’s airline sector. Air Canada saw its operation downsized by over 95 per cent for the months of April and May. “The situation required us to rapidly rethink our business and respond to the fast-changing operating environment to keep the movement of people and goods going wherever possible. Whether it was initially repatriation flights in conjunction with our Federal Government to bring Canadians home from various locations around the world, or maintaining air bridges to all provinces, territories and key international markets, it was vital in our minds Air Canada keep flying throughout this crisis,” says James Howey, Manager, Business Development at Air Canada. Also, within days of the fleet being grounded in late March, Air Canada immediately seized the opportunity to convert seven of their largest Boeing 777

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The situation required us to rapidly rethink our business and respond to the fast-changing operating environment to keep the movement of people and goods going wherever possible.” James Howey, Manager, Business Development at Air Canada and Airbus A330 passenger aircraft by removing seating in the passenger cabins to enable cargo-loading in the passenger deck, and launching international cargo-only flights to support the flow of much needed PPE, pharma and other commodities into Canada. Air Canada is currently offering vouchers with no expiry to passengers for their cancelled flights. “We responded quickly to the evolving situation to where we are today, with several flexible credit options available for travel we made retroactive to March 1, 2020,” informs Howey. Those holding refundable tickets may continue to submit for a refund. For all nonrefundable tickets, they may be converted to an Air Canada Travel Voucher for the full amount with no expiry date, which is fully transferable, which means it can also be used by anyone in the family. Or, one may choose to covert the ticket to Aeroplan Miles and receive a 65 per cent bonus top up. In response to the COVID-19 situation, Air Canada has led the industry with their newly launched CleanCare+ Program, TM

the services available through Guest Services, including stroller, wheelchair and scooter rentals. The health and safety of our visitors, tenants, their employees and their customers are our number one priority,” says Kyla Way, Marketing Director of GTC. The centre’s owner Ivanhoé Cambridge also deployed mitigating measures like rent deferral for the months of April and May for certain tenants most affected by the Covid-19 situation. The retail sector seems to be slowly coming back. “We are seeing traffic increase as our retailers are gradually reopening. All stores won’t be opening on the same day, as retailers have different plans, timelines and resources that dictate when they will open,” adds Way. Earls Restaurants reopened B.C. locations on May 19, 2020, with enhanced safety measures in place to ensure guest safety and comfort. Some of their safety measures include masks worn by employees at all times and employee health checks before entering the restaurant. Groups will be sat six feet apart with a maximum of six people per table both in the restaurant and on patios. Single use menus will be provided and restaurants will operate at 50 per cent capacity to ensure physical distancing. “We know dining in our which lays out the most stringent standards on how they engage with customers every step of their journey from airports through to on board the aircraft. “Measures such as mandatory masks for passengers, temperature screening, hydrostatic cleaning utilizing medical grade disinfectant for our aircraft interiors, seating plans with additional space onboard until June 30, 2020 in Economy Class, amenity kits for passengers that include hand sanitizers and wipes are all new standards to ensure our passengers always feel safe,” informs Howey. It is Air Canada’s current expectation that it will take at least three years to recover to 2019 capacity levels. “On May 22, we announced our plans to begin rebuilding our global network with additional Domestic, Transborder and International services to nearly 100 destinations for our Summer 2020 schedule. Together with our CleanCare+biosecurity program which is a multi-layered approach and our enhanced goodwill policies should travel plans change, we look forward to safely welcoming customers onboard,” says Howey.


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Kyla Way, Marketing Director of Guildford Town Centre restaurants is going to look and feel different for the foreseeable future but we want our guests and employees to know that we’re doing everything we can to ensure their safety. This includes following government regulations and protocol as well as the addition of our own enhanced safety measures,” adds Mark Hladik, Chief Restaurant Officer of Earls Restaurants.   With regulations being eased and businesses, schools and other facilities opening in June, Dr. Ghuman states that there’s certainly a possibility that we may have to prepare for a second wave in the coming months. “We must use lessons learned from the first wave to reduce the impact on society. We’ve realized that society can’t afford to be in complete lockdown due to the economic impact. But there are measures that we can take to reduce the infection rate such as physical distancing, wearing masks and practicing proper hygiene.” He believes that the recovery will be slow and the world that emerges will be different. As B.C. strives to re-strengthen its economy and various industries, we play a crucial role in this progress. No matter what the future looks like, we have the power to change it to the way we want it. By being mindful and supportive of each other via physical distancing, maintaining hygiene and practicing kindness, we can fight this disease together.

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WHERE

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A historically significant landmark for every cultural ethnicity – a place where belonging, identity, commerce, language and food come together.

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DARPAN FEATURE

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estament to Canada’s multicultural fabric and a growing symbol of the South Asian community’s heritage, is Vancouver’s Punjabi Market. The Punjabi Market is a three-block commercial district along Main Street between 48th and 51st Avenues that has been a destination for South Asian culture and commerce. As one of the first landmarks of its kind in Canada, the marketplace is the continent’s oldest Little India, commemorating the work of the South Asian business community. It is a historically significant landmark for every cultural ethnicity – a place where belonging, identity, commerce, language and food come together.

Sucha Singh Claire, the first to open a business in the Punjabi Market back in 1970, saw opportunity for growth despite not having any prior business experience. His store, Shan Sarees and Drapery, was soon followed by a jewellery store opened by his friend. Following this a grocery store was added and the rest is history. By 1980, there were 25 stores in the Punjabi Market. Accented by even quicker growth, 1995 marked the presence of 24 fabric stores, 13 jewellery stores, and five grocery stores. “Altogether I can say there were 80 businesses run by the IndoCanadian community,” says Claire.

Photos: PunjabiMarket.ca, AMASTERMEDIA, IStockPhoto, DARPAN Archives

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Sucha Singh Claire was the first to open a business in the Punjabi Market back in 1970

By 1980, there were 25 stores in the Punjabi Market. Accented by even quicker growth, 1995 marked the presence of 24 fabric stores, 13 jewellery stores, and five grocery stores. “Altogether I can say there were 80 businesses run by the Indo-Canadian community,” says Claire. What was merely a simple place to serve nearby residents, grew into a bustling strip. Businesses such as Bharti Art Jewellers, having been with the Punjabi Market for 47 years, see this journey with a sense of pride, “Love the amazing journey. We are proud to be one of the pioneer businesses on Main Street.” Gulzar Nanda of Hi-Class Jewellers has been at the forefront of championing development and progress for the community associated with the Punjabi

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Market. Hi-Class Jewellers was founded by Gulzar’s father Mrignesh Nanda, a prominent businessman; his family has now had a business there for 35 years. With an intimate perspective, Nanda shares that he carries a strong connection with the Punjabi Market, especially having lost his father in 2017, “That’s the reason I started doing this work. My family spent 33 years of their lives dedicated to nourishing the business and market, sometimes away from their children. Their entire story is tied to this place.” He points out that the Punjabi Market has gone through many changes over the past decades. Similarly, Michael Lee, MLA for Vancouver-Langara opined that “[the] Punjabi Market is an important part of the historical and cultural history of both the city of Vancouver and of my riding, Vancouver-Langara. Since the first store opened in 1971, the Punjabi Market has been considered a place to support cultural identity as is demonstrated every year by the sheer number of upwards of 100,000 attendees at the annual Vaisakhi Parade through the Punjabi Market.” Harinder Singh Toor, running the Punjabi Food Center, since 1981, recalls that the Punjabi market was a destination spot before the time of Surrey’s IndoCanadian business landscape. When asked why he chose to open his business, Riwaaz Boutique on Main Street, owner Avniash Toora responds, “Back then, it was the only choice in the Lower Mainland and maybe even in North Ameirca. This is where everybody TM

came.” The influx of shoppers was almost astonishing, as business even hired security guards to limit the number of people in a store. More recently, after the 2008 global financial crisis, taxes began going up. Vancouver had the Olympics lined for 2010 and many government investments fell through, leading to a decrease in economic support for the Punjabi Market. Notably, previously dominant and large-scale businesses such as Guru Bazaar Sarees,

Harinder Singh Toor has been running the Punjabi Food Center since 1981


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Michael Lee, MLA Vancouver-Langara

Since the first store opened in 1971, the Punjabi Market has been considered a place to support cultural identity as is demonstrated every year by the sheer number of upwards of 100,000 attendees at the annual Vaisakhi Parade through the Punjabi Market.“ Frontier Cloth House, and other smaller jewellers and businesses left. Following this, there was a period of lull, where growth was stagnant. However, more recently, proactive community members, with Nanda being probably the only business owner as part of the movement, began to stir more conversations about the place. Looking towards the future, the new Punjabi market is going to be more than just businesses. It will transform into a cultural space, where creative activities enable the community to consume, participate, learn and grow. This can take different forms across the arts, including a 50th anniversary mural in the works by PMRC Creative Director, Jag Nagra. Nanda describes such creative expressions as the first of many. The intent is to liven the space up for activities and add to the overall health of the neighborhood, which is in line with the City’s strategic plans, as framed by Councilor Pete Fry, “In November 2018, Vancouver City Council directed staff to expedite the development of a City-wide planning

MA

ET RK

Happy 50th Anniversary I B to the JA Punjabi Market!

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DARPAN FEATURE

process, that would help to determine the shape of our neighborhoods, guided by inclusion, heritage, and enjoyable welldesigned gathering places, among other things.� Harj Thandi of Tim Hortons at the Punjabi Market shares that he sees the market moving purely forward, and become the place to be. From a commerce perspective, Thandi claims that there are new, successful businesses integrated into the economic landscape of the marketplace. Furthermore, the latest census shows, that Vancouver now has more South Asians living in the city than in any point in history, including the past height of the Punjabi market. Given the increase in population and high density, the neighborhood is evolving. From a governmental perspective,

Looking towards the future, the new Punjabi market is going to be more than just businesses. It will transform into a cultural space, where creative activities enable the community to consume, participate, learn and grow.

Ajit Singh Thandi & Harj Singh Thandi in front of their Tim Hortons Location on Main St.

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Gulzar Nanda, Hi Class Jewellers

To truly thrive, the Punjabi market needs the community’s support. Visiting the Punjabi Market shops and shopping is the clearest way to help. For every $100 you spend at locally owned businesses, $68 will stay in the community. When spending that same $100 at a national chain, only $43 stays in the community. support looks promising. The municipal government has passed a motion with significant investments coming and the revamping of social policy to gain better understanding of the cityscape surrounding the marketplace. There is also the planning side, which contributes heavily to the economic future of the place. The team has had about four to five engagement sessions, with the goal to understand what the community wants out of this space; art was a strong part of discussions.




nspired by art, culture and heritage, Hi-Class Jewellers has been in the fine-jewellery business for five generations. With roots that date back to the British Raj, the Nanda family’s story now continues in Canada, with the local shop serving customers for 35 years. Hi-Class Jewelers was founded by the late Mrignesh Nanda in 1985, and is currently run by his wife & son, Seema & Gulzar Nanda. The importance of design and quality, and a passion for noble metals, fine gems, and jewellery has been passed down from ancestor to ancestor, and across continents. The Nanda family honor their heritage by serving the community from their small boutique in Vancouver’s Punjabi Market. At the core of Gulzar’s philosophy is cultivating an essence of community and honoring the deep roots his parents have set with their leadership. Gulzar describes, “I have been working at my parents store since I was 9 or 10 years old; Over the last two decades I have seen many families purchase their daughter’s bridal trousseau, I have seen that bride purchase jewellery for their newborn baby, and I have seen that newborn grow into a young adult who wants jewellery to express their own identity.” Gulzar adds that, “this has enabled us to connect families through every occasion.” The business sees itself as being able to connect different generations through jewelry. Priding itself on its ancestry of unparalleled fervor and craftsmanship, Hi-Class Jewelers extends to you a promise across generations, creating timeless connections.

6570 Main St, Vancouver, BC www.hiclassjewellers.com

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@hiclassjewellers @hcjewellers

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Undoubtedly, economic recovery is a central theme, with the pandemic having influenced businesses. Main Street has small business concepts, many of them owned by small communities and even families. To get on their feet, government support will be important, although recent events have changed the reality and created uncertainty around how the provincial and federal government will be involved. Regardless, governmental branches such as Harjit Sajjan’s office, assure that the Punjabi Market will remain a priority. Besides governmental backing, to truly thrive, the Punjabi market needs the community’s support. Visiting the Punjabi Market shops and shopping is the clearest way to help. From a social perspective, Nanda further quotes results from civil economics research: For every $100 you spend at locally owned businesses, $68 will stay in the community. When spending that same $100 at a national chain, only $43 stays in the community. In addition, Nanda appeals that the community keep an eye

Rasik Lal & Bharti, Founders of Bharti Art Jewellers

Businesses such as Bharti Art Jewellers, having been with the Punjabi Market for 47 years, see this journey with a sense of pride, “Love the amazing journey. We are proud to be one of the pioneer businesses on Main Street.”

on what the marketplace is doing via major social media outlets. The Punjabi Market is always looking for engaged volunteers and people that have viewpoints. With young people involved, the team values perspectives of Generation Z and Millennial experiences. In fact, the marketplace is currently working on an online portal, which will have merch. This will help push the community towards a new direction, with the Punjabi market accessible anywhere from the world. To get involved with upcoming initiatives, the Punjabi Market website is a onestop shop, alongside accessibility via email and social media. A representation of the South Asian community’s rich history from a socioeconomic lens, the Punjabi Market is a true gem. Standing from generations, its essence carries stories, integrity and prosperity. Enhancing its prominence as a colourful, friendly district, the Punjabi Market is set to becoming the perfect blend of culture and commerce.

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Punjabi Market The best place to celebrate

Harj Thandi / JUNE 2020 44 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

Ajit Thandi DARPAN

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6501 Main Street, Vancouver

Photo: AMASTERMEDIA

2020

marks the 50th anniversary of Punjabi Market situated along Main Street in Vancouver. May 31, 2020, has been declared as Punjabi Market Day. This is a significant milestone for BC’s South Asian community as it is the oldest Punjabi Market in North America. Tim Hortons owners, Ajit Singh Thandi and Harj Singh Thandi, are thrilled to celebrate and support this exciting milestone. As long-time residents of the community, Ajit and Harj are a father-son duo with ties to the South Vancouver neighborhood for over 30 years; they continue to have deep rooted connections with many of their extended relatives, friends, and business colleagues in the area. Ajit immigrated to Canada with an electrical engineering degree and eventually joined the Tim Hortons franchise business in the early 1990s. Last year in Spring, they officially opened their Tim Hortons restaurant, located right at the heart of the Punjabi Market - 49th and Main Street. “Congratulations to the Punjabi Market for their 50th Anniversary! I grew up just two blocks away and spent my entire childhood in the Punjabi Market neighborhood. So it has been humbling experience to bring the brand here,” says Harj. The father and son recall having countless memorable experiences in the historic Punjabi Market whether it was just going for walks through the market, visiting the Punjabi restaurants and sweet shops, exploring the many fabric shops in the neighborhood or meeting with friends. The vibrant market provided a sense of community for everyone in the area and it was a pillar for all those who lived there. So when the opportunity arose to expand their Tim Hortons business in the Punjabi Market, it was a humbling and gratifying moment for Ajit and Harj. They are happy to get the opportunity to provide the market with a relaxed space where locals can gather and connect over a cup of coffee. Today, their restaurant is an integral part of the Punjabi Market where conversations take form and connections are built. To make the 50th anniversary celebration, Tim Hortons offered several hours of free coffee and donuts for the guests on May 31. Celebrate the market’s anniversary with delicious baked goods and beverages from Canada’s favourite coffee house.


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YOUTH SPEAK

Find what works for you The pace in university is a lot faster than in high school so you’ll have to learn to adjust to it. A lot of independent work is necessary. Maybe you were able to get away with studying for an exam the night before in high school and get a 90%. That is so difficult to do in university, there’s just too many courses and too much content for each course. Figure out when you are able to study most effectively: night or morning? In silence or louder environment? Library or bedroom? Everyone works differently so try not to compare yourself with others.

Meet Your Professor

TRANSITIONING TO

UNIVERSITY BY JASLEEN BAHIA

M

y name is Jasleen Bahia and I am currently in my first year of Management and Organizational studies at Western University! Transitioning to university is unlike any other experience in life. There really isn’t any way to prepare for it besides just going into it headfirst with an open mind, inquisitive nature, and a willingness to extend beyond your comfort zone. Over the past semester, I gained some knowledge I wish I knew before coming to university. Here are some of my top tips for easing the transition to university!

Get acquainted with the resources on campus There are countless help centres, free tutoring services, personal counselling, and wellness resources students have access to. Take advantage of these services available to you! If you can’t find them, ask a professor or navigate through your school’s website to find contact information for them!

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A low mark isn’t the end of the world

University is all about taking initiative if you want to succeed and going to see your professor during designated office hours is an easy way to do this! Introduce yourself at the beginning of the year, get their feedback for assignments, and ask for clarification if you don’t understand something. Professors aren’t as intimidating as you think, they are waiting to help you!

Create a budget A lot of unexpected costs are going to come up. Be conscientious about how you use your money. Make a spreadsheet at the beginning of the year outlining your monthly income and expenses. Buy textbooks second hand, limit how many coffees you buy, and pack your own snacks.

Stay organized As soon as your semester starts, go through the syllabus for each course you’re taking and write the dates of all of your exams and assignments on a monthly calendar. This way, you’ll be able to allocate time to study accordingly.

Get involved!

Focussing solely on academics will get really It’s almost inevitable that your boring really fast. There’s so many clubs and marks will drop so prepare yourself teams available to get involved with. It’s a great to get lower marks than you got in way to meet new people with similar interests. high school. Set feasible goals and don’t be so hard on yourself if you don’t achieve what you wanted. That Don’t forget to eat & sleep one mark is not going to impact Take care of yourself and your health by not your life in the grand scheme of skipping out on meals!! Get enough sleep too! things. With that said, everyone doesn’t have to fail everything so adjust your study habits and put in Enjoy every moment! Just HAVE FUN! You only the necessary amount of time to get this moment once so make the most of it. achieve your academic goals. TM


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NALANDAWAY: When Art Becomes A Way Of Life by Mrinalini Sundar

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t was in 2002 when communal violence broke in Gujarat and with that many lives were lost. That's when Sriram Ayer, a writer, storyteller, and social entrepreneur founded the NGO, NalandaWay in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. The aim of the organization, to quote their website is, "to develop a sense of self-importance and individuality, encourage self-expression and stimulate imagination among disadvantaged children through our art programs. The objective is to help kids ‘achieve through arts’ (ATA)�. The founder and the team believe that through art children can explore, express, and communicate ideas and experiences effortlessly. Children also develop creative ideas and learn life lessons. The NGO works with children from the poorest districts in India, helping them raise their voices and issues through theatre, visual arts, music, dance, radio, and films. According to their website, close to 50,000 children have been benefited every year through their lessons.

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Sriram Ayer, Founder The aim of the organization, to quote their website is, "to develop a sense of selfimportance and individuality, encourage self-expression and stimulate imagination among disadvantaged children through our art programs." TM

NalandaWay has five structured methods that are currently running. Their Art In Education looks at developing an "art curriculum" with grade-specific activities. Though this is conducted on an independent basis at the NalandaWay facility, the art curriculum has also been introduced at more than 100 schools in Chennai. Children from marginalized sectors are engaged through art resulting in better results in their academics. It has also been noted that the dropout rates reduce drastically. Also, part of this curriculum is a special teacher's art workshop where they learn to expand their creativity and can engage students better. Interestingly, NalandaWay has art labs that, according to their website, provide "exposure level and specialized courses to children who show promise in fine arts, craft, music, dance, drama, and media. Art experiences offer children opportunities to think and feel as they explore, problem solve, express, and interpret the world around them. Currently, NalandaWay runs 10 art labs in the city of Chennai. NalandaWay also runs 2 art labs each in Delhi and Coimbatore respectively, impacting nearly 3000 children." Besides learning, art can also be a great way to heal. That is one of the programs developed by the NGO. Their workshop of dreams aka Kanavu Pattarai (in Tamil) is a three-day residential camp organized for children between the age group of 13-16. Students here get to learn theatre, storytelling, and other participatory training techniques. This workshop aims at creating a sense of belongingness amongst the kids especially because they belong to different socio-economic backgrounds. One of their most cherished and popular initiative is the Chennai Children's Choir. Imagine a group of kids between the age group of seven and 17 singing classic songs at amazing venues - that's what this group is all about! Sometimes, the group also includes visually impaired and physically disabled singers. They started the choir in 2015 when they auditioned 600 children from Government and trust run schools. The group croons classical renditions, patriotic songs, and songs by eminent poets. They also sing numbers based on themes every year such as humanity, unity is happiness, nature, self-confidence, courage, and strength. As for language, the proud group has


until now crooned in 12 languages including Sanskrit, Hindi, and Tamil. A similar initiative was introduced in 2018 in Delhi. The group's first performance was at SDMC Ghosi when it became a Ford Happy School in Delhi. The group also has a music video featuring 'Illahi Mere' from `Yeh Jawanni Hai Deewani' and `Paranne' from the Malayalam movie `Koode'. The NGO is also spreading delightful happiness during these uncertain and challenging times. How you ask? Well, children from the NalandaWay Foundation’s Chennai Children Choir along with the Delhi Children’s Choir, rendered the song ‘Raghupathy Raghava Rajaram’ as part of the four-hour virtual fundraiser concert, I For India. According to a report in the Hindu, Sriram Aiyar said, "We got 28 children from the

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One of their most cherished and popular initiative is the Chennai Children's Choir. Imagine a group of kids between the age group of seven and 17 singing classic songs at amazing venues - that's

PHOTOS COURTESY OF NALANDAWAY

what this group is all about! Chennai and Delhi Choirs to sing the song. It was a challenge for us initially since we couldn’t meet to record the song. We instead asked the children to record themselves singing the song from their homes, and then put together the individual videos,” said Sriram Ayer, founder, NalandaWay Foundation." But how can the art programs work when schools are shut down? In fact, this is when students need it the most- with exams, anxiety, and stress. They have a solution for that too. The NGO has launched Take It Easy - a method by which students can destress and listen to motivational stories from the comfort of your home. All one needs to do is leave a missed call which will be returned with an automated call. A “Take it Easy” five minute-story of the day will be played. A new story is added every day for the next 30 days. There is a reason they say only art can save us. With art by your side, this NGO believes students can express their fears, emotions, insecurities, and at the same time build their confidence and morale.

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DARPAN FEATURE

One of the best things we can all do is focus on reducing our stress simply because of the adverse physical and mental health effects that come from not managing it.

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Most people are adding to their stress due to improper breathing, or breathing through the chest. Instead, slow your breathing and inhale through the diaphragm (stomach area) for seven seconds, hold it for seven seconds, and slowly exhale through the lips for seven seconds. This prevents hyperventilation, makes you feel calmer and allows the mind and body to reset.

TIPS TO

REDUCE YOUR STRESS BY DR. ALOK TRIVEDI

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dr. Alok Trivedi is a human behavior expert, founder of the Aligned Performance Institute and author of the book Chasing Success.

I

t’s the start of a new decade and a time when many people are trying to make more positive changes in their lives. One of the best things we can all do is focus on reducing our stress simply because of the adverse physical and mental health effects that come from not managing it. How can you accomplish this?

Maybe it’s a coworker. Maybe it’s an ex. Perhaps it’s watching political news on television. Whatever is causing your stress, reduce the time you spend engaged with it.

2 1 MEASURE YOUR STRESS LEVELS

At the end of each day, give yourself a score from 1 to 10 that describes your level of stress on that day. Average out your numbers at the end of the week to see just how stressed you are. Knowing where you stand is important so you can determine how strong a grip stress has over you.

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MAX O2 BREATHING

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REDUCE TIME AROUND THE STRESSOR

Maybe it’s a coworker. Maybe it’s an ex. Perhaps it’s watching political news on television. Whatever is causing your stress, reduce the time you spend engaged with it. In fact, do what you need to do in order to be done with this person or thing as quickly as possible so you can move forward and feel better. For those situations that you can’t avoid, ask yourself, “What is the healthiest way I can respond?” Remember, you can’t control the stressor. You can only control your response.


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DARPAN FEATURE

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GET YOUR 'ME' TIME For atleast 30 minutes, no matter where you live, what you do for a living or any other life circumstance, everyone needs to take at least 30 minutes each day for themselves. If you’re not taking the time to relax, refresh and recharge your mind and body, you’re going to drown in stress and be unable to function at optimal performance.

SLOW DOWN A LITTLE We live in a very fast-paced time where we are all super connected and multitasking is a way of life. If you want to reduce your stress, as Supertramp said, “Take the long way home.” Walk instead of run. Take the scenic route. Focus on completing one task at a time. Admire your surroundings. Taste your food instead of gulping it down. Disconnect from social media and the internet for just one day. Be present in all that you do.

6

TAKE A FREEDOM DAY A longer version of “me” time is taking an entire mental health day all to yourself. In fact, many companies now offer these to their employees. This is a day you spend doing whatever you want, wherever you want and with whomever you want. There are no rules to be followed except getting away from the grind and having fun.

4 7 Photos : iStockphoto

MAX O2 BREATHING

Most people are adding to their stress due to improper breathing, or breathing through the chest. Instead, slow your breathing and inhale through the diaphragm (stomach area) for seven seconds, hold it for seven seconds, and slowly exhale through the lips for seven seconds. This prevents hyperventilation, makes you feel calmer and allows the mind and body to reset.

/ JUNE 2020 52 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

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FIND OUTLETS FOR YOUR STRESS Whether it’s hitting the gym or reading a book, everyone needs an outlet to reduce their stress. This is usually around an activity that you enjoy and find pleasurable. Whatever it is that takes your mind off the hustle and bustle of everyday life and makes you feel free, do more of it.

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As Supertramp said, “Walk instead of run.” Take the scenic route. Focus on completing one task at a time. Admire your surroundings. Taste your food instead of gulping it down.

STOP BEING SO RIGID Having these set and strict expectations to follow isn’t healthy. Instead, be fluid and go with the flow more. Things don’t always have to go your way and you don’t always have to be in control all of the time. Learn to let go, relax and let life take you wherever it does


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Trade Builders

GIVING POWER TO YOUTH

PICS YOUTH TRADES PROGRAMS

Photos: Courtesy of PICS

Y

outh are the future of our country. So it is crucial that their skills and talents are recognized early on, and further enhanced in order to create a stronger future. Progressive Intercultural Community Services (PICS) Society recognizes the need for skilled and resourceful youth and therefore introduced two new youth trades programs on April 1, 2019. Youth Trades Program is a Skills Training for Employment (STE) initiative by the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training, which is funded by the Government of Canada through the Canada-British Columbia Workforce Development Agreement. PICS delivers two streams of youth trades programs – Youth Technical Employment and Business Pathways, and Trade Builders; which are among numerous programs in B.C. that help youth participants overcome employment barriers. With the City of Surrey having the largest youth population, there was a high need for youth programming. “Based on the needs of the community, PICS was able to develop a program geared towards youth, especially careers in B.C.’s booming construction sector such as tradespeople and safety technicians,” shares Ankita Grewal, Youth Outreach Counsellor at PICS.

/ JUNE 2020 54 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

It is a 30-week employment program for young adults aged 17-29 years, who are generally not job-ready and are facing multiple barriers to employment. The program is designed to support participants through the exploration of various building trades and guiding them to choose a trade that is best fit for them. Based on the Occupational Training Plan developed for each participant, the participants will attend training at reputed institutions like KPU, BCIT and UAPICBC that have courses accredited by ITA. Training may include for trades such as electrician, carpenter, plumber, machinist, etc. “The training also includes life skills, employment readiness training, job shadowing, and entrepreneurial mindset training,” says Grewal,

Program Eligibility: s Youth aged 17-29 years old s Canadian Citizen or Permanant Resident or Refugee status

Program Benefits: s Short-term safety training (worth up to $550) s Transportation Supports s Daily participation allowance s Child care supports as required s Funding for workplace essential clothing/equipment

Youth Technical Employment & Business Pathways It is a 20-week employment program for young adults aged 17-29 years, who are generally job-ready. The program is designed to support participants through the exploration of three different technical occupations: s Fire Protection Inspector s Construction Safety Inspector s Underground Utility Locator Specialist “The program offers career exploration, job shadowing and employment support. The course will support youth in obtaining certification from reputed institutions of training, such as KPU & BCIT, for courses accredited by ASTTBC,” informs Grewal.

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s Up to $3,300 towards school/ courses for building trades

adding that financial support is also provided towards work gear, transportation, and refreshments for youth. Additionally, each participant receives short term training and certifications for seven foundation safety courses: Occupational First Aid, Scaffold and Ladder Safety, Confined Spaces, WHMIS, WCB Awareness, Backtalk, and Fall Protection. These programs enable youth who are facing multiple barriers to employment, to be able to realize their full potential and contribute to the community in a meaningful manner and career.

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than saving. However, ever since COVID-19 proclaimed world domination a few months back, our lives have been thrown upside down. The pandemic has not only resulted in a huge tragic loss of human life but has also collapsed the world economy and many are struggling to even make ends meet. Jobs are lost, salary cuts are on the way, companies are shutting down, unemployment globally is on the rise — the on-going crisis is mind-numbing. What’s more, economic pundits have stated that the world economy will further experience the worst recession since the Great Depression. Now, this is a warning bell for all of us to make saving our priority. Anyway, the ‘Great Lockdown’ time has definitely taught us one thing – we just need the basics for survival, rest all is sheer luxury.

Respect Mother Nature

by Shweta Kulkarni

Lessons to Learn From

Covid-19 & Other Calamities

W

hile everyone across globe is focussing on dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, it is also crucial to learn some important lessons from this human crisis, which will help us build a better world once again. Like any other year, 2020 was welcomed with a wave of enthusiasm, upbeat buoyancy, determining resolutions and hopes for a better tomorrow. However, a little over three months and 2020 proved to be the worst nightmare for everyone across the globe. Despite all the scientific and technological advances, the unimaginable happened – an invisible enemy brought the world to a standstill. The novel coronavirus aka COVID-19 is rapidly spreading across populations and unapologetically wreaking havoc worldwide. And as much as we would like to reboot 2020, what this crisis truly calls for is a reboot of our thoughts and a huge shift in our consciousness.

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Since the beginning of mankind, outbreaks, diseases, and calamites of such kind have ravaged the human existence. And while like all the others, the corona pandemic too might see its end, (hopefully soon), scientists believe that outbreaks like this in future are inevitable. Moreover, the future global crisis may not just arise from diseases but can also stem from climate change, hence it is high time we take some lessons from COVID-19 and other calamities. The Corona pandemic is an unprecedented wake-up call for all of us. Below are a few key lessons that we should learn from the current pandemic and other disasters that have befallen upon us in the past.

Save For The Rainy Day With our unsatiated desires for all the good and luxurious things in life, our generation had become more focussed on spending TM

All calamities and outbreaks like COVID-19 have taught us one thing – nothing can challenge the force of nature, no matter how advanced science and technology is, we aren’t above nature. Despite being warned innumerable times about the high-risk of animal-borne infectious diseases, and the climate crisis, we didn’t learn our lesson and continued to destroy our natural habitats. The results have been certainly grave. Recently, on International Mother Earth Day, observed on April 22, UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ shared a message for everyone. He said, “The impact of the coronavirus is both immediate and dreadful. But there is another deep emergency — the planet’s unfolding environmental crisis. Biodiversity is in steep decline. Climate disruption is approaching a point of no return. Greenhouse gases, just like viruses, do not respect national boundaries and we must act decisively to protect our planet from both the coronavirus and the existential threat of climate disruption.” It is about time we start respecting mother nature and get more eco-conscious.

Health Is Wealth One most important lesson to take from COVID-19 pandemic is that your health is everything. According to health experts, a well-nurtured physical and mental health can keep a horde of diseases at bay. Even in several COVID-19 cases, it has been observed that those with a robust immune system have been able to battle the dreaded virus far more effectively than the ones with a weaker defence system. Moving forward, we should ensure to not take our health for granted and take as many precautionary measures to boost the immune system as possible. Remember selfcare is not a luxury but a priority.


Learn To Be More Empathetic In precarious times like these, empathy is what holds communities and people together. Never downplay the seriousness of such calamities and always move forward with compassion and empathy. Remember not everyone may be as privileged as you are, hence it is important to extend that helping hand in whatever ways you can. Don’t just re-post and share stories of how the disaster has affected several homeless, sick and underprivileged people and share sad emoticons. Come forward and donate and helps others where you can.

All calamities and outbreaks like COVID-19 have taught

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us one thing – nothing can challenge the force of nature, no matter how advanced science and technology is, we aren’t above nature.

You Are Not Invincible Dalai Lama recently said, “The current global pandemic threatens us all, without distinctions of race, culture or gender. Whether we like it or not, we have been born on this earth as part of one great family. Rich or poor, educated or uneducated, belonging to one nation or another, ultimately each of us is just a human being like everyone else.” The message here is very important, none of us is invincible. Pandemics and other natural disasters don’t discriminate between the rich and the poor and a calamity can befall upon anyone, anytime. World leaders, politicians, as well as celebrities have been tested COVID-19 positive, so don’t ever think you are invincible. If there are certain protocols to be followed, follow them, don’t be a rebel without a cause and enjoy each day as it comes. You don’t know what tomorrow shall hold, so make as much of it as today. Spread the love, adapt and embrace the change.

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If you want to eat out less and cook more at home, these are the must-have gadgets for your kitchen.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Andy Baryer (aka Handy Andy) is a technology journalist, gadget reviewer, and DIY-expert based in Vancouver, Canada. As an on-air technology expert, Andy is a frequent guest on GlobalBC Noon News and heard on CKNW and Kiss Radio.

BY ANDY BARYER

I

KITCHEN GADGETS

n today’s fast paced world, cooking a healthy home cooked meal for your family can often seem out of reach. With the right high tech kitchen gadgets, even the most novice culinary-inept cooks can make quick and healthy dishes for the whole family. If you want to eat out less and cook more at home, these are the must-have gadgets for your kitchen.

Instant Pot Smart WiFi 6 Quart

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HEALTHY

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Rotimatic As any Indian mother will tell you, making roti is so simple, it’s complicated. It takes years of practice, patience, and hand-me-down grandmother lessons to make a perfect roti. But if you rather outsource that task to a robot, the Rotimatic is the next best thing. The Rotimatic is an ultra-expensive kitchen gadget the size of a microwave that makes roti with little to no effort. Simply add flour, water and oil to the corresponding containers

The Instant Pot Smart WiFi is a high tech version of the beloved Instant Pot. While it has all the popular modes and functions, the addition of WiFi connectivity allows users to set up the Instant Pot through an app. Users can select programs, make custom adjustments, and start the cooker with a simple tap. If you’re looking for cooking ideas, the Instant Pot app includes a recipe section with hundreds of dishes ranging from cheesecake to Indian curries. For those who like to multitask, app notifications alert you when the Instant Pot cooking session is finished. If you have limited cooking space and storage, the Instant Pot Smart WiFi is a swiss army knife in the kitchen to saute, pressure cook, steam and slow cook a wide variety of healthy foods.

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FOR

on the top of the machine and enter how you want your roti on the control screen. Users can change the thickness of the roti, how long you want it to cook, and how much oil should go into each one. Users can also decide how many rotis you want to make with a maximum of 20 rotis at a time. TM


DARPAN TECH

Philips Digital Airfryer XXL For families looking for a healthy alternative for fried foods, the Philips Digital Airfyer XXL uses hot air to fry foods with little or no added oil. Designed for families, this airfryer can handle a whole chicken or two bags of frozen fries to prepare up to six portions worth of fried food with up to 90 per cent less fat. The Philips Airfryer XXL requires no pre-heating and uses powerful hot air and Twin TurboStar technology to create a fast, tornado like airflow with only a tablespoon of oil. The excess fat from food is extracted and captured at the bottom for easy removal. The Airfryer can also be used to grill, bake and roast all your favourite foods for quick, delicious, healthy family meals.

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T-fal OptiGrill Smart If you remember the George Foreman Grill in the late 90s, the T-fal OptiGrill is the high-tech version for today’s millennial. The T-fal OptiGrill is an indoor grill that keeps track of your cooking progress with the MyOptiGrill smartphone app. The OptiGrill Smart connects to a smartphone with Bluetooth and allows users to grill meat and vegetable dishes from the comfort of their couch. Users can keep an eye on their food within the app and create custom profiles on how they like their meat cooked. Sensors automatically adjust temperature and cooking time based on the number of food items on the grill, and the thickness of the meat.

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DARPAN RECIPES

Chef

Kumar

Mahadevan A

ppearing on Masterchef twice and with a book deal in the pipeline, it is no wonder that Chef Kumar Mahadevan has become widely regarded as the Godfather of Indian cuisine. Kumar Mahadevan got a taste for Indian cuisine from an early age, learning long-held family recipes in his mother’s kitchen as a child. Knowing instinctively that cooking was to be his career path, he embarked on his culinary education at the age of 17 at India’s Institute of Hotel Management. From here, Chef Kumar went on to complete his apprenticeship at the Taj Intercontinental Hotel in Bombay, before moving to

/ JUNE 2020 60 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

Australia in 1985 to work. He soon found himself in Australia heading up the kitchen at the highly regarded Mayur restaurant, where he cooked for the likes of Prince Phillip and Mick Jagger. Inspired by these experiences and demonstrating a natural flair for flavour combination, Chef Kumar opened his first restaurant, Abhi's in North Strathfield - named after his first son - in 1990. Now, 20 years on, Abhi’s has obtained status as one of Sydney’s cult dining hot spots, testament to the popularity of Chef Kumar’s distinctive and elegant brand of Indian fare. Following this, Chef Kumar embarked on a more ambitious operation,

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Appearing on Masterchef twice and with a book deal in the pipeline, it is no wonder that Chef Kumar Mahadevan has become widely regarded as the Godfather of Indian cuisine in Australia.

Aki’s, on the historic finger Wharf in Woolloomooloo, named after his second son. Both restaurants showcase Kumar’s modern interpretation of Indian food – the light, delicate flavours and generous use of fresh, aromatic spices have since become Chef Kumar’s signature. Chef Kumar delights in creating dishes that combine the best of local seafood and fresh produce, rich with the flavours of his native Southern India – a contemporary approach to a traditional cuisine that has won him praise and respect. In addition to his Masterchef appearances, Chef Kumar was chosen by Joanna Savill, Director of SIFF, to represent the flavours and colours of Indian cuisine in the first Sydney International Food Festival. Chef Kumar also brought to Sydney Chef Praveen Annand, internationally acclaimed for his knowledge of Southern Indian cooking. His association with Praveen Annand continues today, with Chef Kumar making regular visits to continue his education on both the historic and contemporary aspects of Indian food. It is not just Chef Kumar’s widely recognised skills in the kitchen that have helped to gain him such widespread status. A charming and loquacious man, Chef Kumar’s endearing effervescence has ensured he is as celebrated for his food as he is for his character. Chef Kumar’s role as an ambassador of Indian cuisine in Australia is his career legacy.


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DARPAN RECIPES

Preparation • Marinate the quails by rubbing the dry powdered spices with the lemon juice, crushed ginger and garlic. Set it aside for 20 mins.

Quail

Chetinad Ingredients

BY CHEF KUMAR MAHADEVAN

Chef Kumar’s

• Heat the oil in a pan and add the fennel seeds and the dried whole chillies. Cook till the tips of the chillies start turning black. Then, add the sliced Spanish onion and cook till golden brown. • While the onions are being cooked, flash fry the sliced potato and keep ready. • In this mixture, cook and seal the quails. Towards the end, add the curry leaves and fried potatos and toss in the pan.

• 4 Butterflied Quails

modern interpretation of Indian food – the

• 1 tbsp Corriander Powder • 1 tsp Cumin Powder • ½ tsp Turmeric Powder

light, delicate flavours

• Juice of 1 Lemon • 1 tsp Chilli Powder

and generous use of

• 1 tsp Garam Masala Powder

fresh, aromatic spices

• 1 tbsp Vegetable Oil • 1 tsp Whole Fennel Seeds

have become Chef

• To finishing, cook in the oven for 4-5 mins and serve. • Garnish with some fried curry leaves and ginger julienne.

Kumar's tip • Do not overcook the quails. They need to be moist inside.

• 20 Curry Leaves

Kumar’s signature.

• 1 knob Ginger (1 inch) • 1 tsp Fresh Garlic minced • 1 Med Spanish Onion (sliced) • 2 Whole Dried Chillies • 1 Potato (sliced) • Salt To Taste

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Courtesy of Chef Kumar Mahadevan


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DARPAN RECIPES

BY CHEF KUMAR MAHADEVAN

Brinjal Mirchi

Salan

Ingredients

For Garnish:

• 2 tbsp Coriander Powder

• Ginger julienne

• 8 Baby Eggplant

• Fried Curry Leaves

• 2 Banana Chillies

Preparation

• 2 tbsp Tamarind Pulp • 2 Medium Spanish Onion • 10 pcs Curry Leaves • 1 tbsp Ginger Garlic Paste

For Masala: • 50 Peanut • 25 Sesame Seeds • 20 grams Desiccated Coconut • 4 Pieces Green Chilly

To Make Masala:

• To get some extra flavour saute the eggplant in oil to seal the skin and then cook in the sauce. • For increasing the heat and sharpness, slit a green chilli and throw it in the mix towards the end with some fresh curry leaves.

• Slit the bottom of the eggplant into quarters and apply a bit of salt and turmeric only 20-30 min before cooking.

• Add a couple of tablespoons of water and add the powdered spices.

• The Banana Chillies can be cut into 1 inch discs.

Method:

• 2 tbsp Coriander Powder

• Heat Oil and add the Panchphoran masala and sliced onions.

• 1 tbsp Kasmiri Chilli Powder • 2 tsp Turmeric

• Cook till onions are golden brown

• 2 tsp Panch phoran Masala

• Add the Ginger and Garlic Paste and cook for a further minute

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• To get a smooth paste, do not add too much water at one go.

• Grind the Peanuts, sesame, coconut and the green chilli with a bit of water. Make it to a smooth paste and set aside.

Powdered Spices:

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Kumar's tip

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• Cook for a further couple of minutes • Add the tamarind pulp, ground masala paste and 1 litre of water and cook for 20 minutes on slow heat • When the sauce has been cooked well, add the eggplant and cook well. Add the banana chillies 5 minutes before taking of the fire. They do not need to be cooked for too long. Courtesy of Chef Kumar Mahadevan


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DARPAN FEATURE

8

Steps to Deal with

‘High-Spirited’

Children

BY MRINALINI SUNDAR

"high-spirited" instead of "challenging" "problem-child" or "difficult". Parents often begin to wonder if they have done something wrong resulting in the child behaving this way. If you have kids, who have similar experiences then be sure- you have been blessed with a highspirited child. Now that we know what we are dealing with, let's look at some of the easy ways to engage high-spirited kids. Read on...

With quarantines, lockdowns, and isolations - kids have very little distraction and are finding it tough to let off steam.

I

magine a two-year-old screaming his lungs out and running in circles for nearly an hour without a break. This is a regular phenomenon at my house. My little one has bouts of energy that are hard for him to channelize. These are some very challenging times - not just for parents but kids as well. With quarantines, lockdowns, and isolations - kids have very little distraction and are finding it tough to let off steam!

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Kids who are high on energy crave for activities that can engage their curious minds. If not, they want a vast space to run around or indulge in physical activities. Let them play in the backyard or head to the park nearby for about an hour every day. If both are not possible at this point of time, a good evening walk for about an hour is also a good way to spend your child's energy. Enrolling in a sport - soccer, basketball, or karate could also really help.

2

Encourage attention to detail

Every time your child rushes through a task in a hurry or is very distracted - we suggest you don't accept their work.

We are talking about kids who are sweet, loving, and caring but are high on energy. To add to the energy, these kids also experience mood swings, throw in a temperament, adamance, and a tantrum. According to a report on Today's Parent, it will be easier to call these children

/ JUNE 2020 66 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

1

Give them space to release the energy

What's even worst is to do the job yourself. Make sure you ask your child to revisit the task. Prompt them in the right way if that is encouraging but do not accept a sloppy job. This will help them build focus and do the best at every task that is given to them.

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DARPAN FEATURE

5 According to a report on Today's Parent, it will be easier to call these children "highspirited" instead of "challenging" "problem-child" or "difficult". Parents often begin to wonder if they have done something wrong resulting in the child behaving this way.

/ JUNE 2020 68 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

3

Sensitivity is key

Give them "no" as an answer and the waterworks just won't stop. Children, in general, are sensitive and they need someone who is sensitive to their emotions. Having said that, you need to be firm with them. The tantrum and the crying are because your child knows, you will probably cave in. It is in such situations that you need to prove how strong-willed you are. Tell them a no and explain why you are saying so. A little talking can help. You can also be empathetic and offer an alternative to their demand, this way you are acknowledging their emotions and at the same time, not giving in to what they want. Child business is tricky, you have got to do what's best for them.

4

Structured play is important

While I had earlier mentioned that kids need some space to just run around meaninglessly. It is also important at the same time to have some structure during their playtime. Include music, rhythmic songs, repeating beats, jumping, marching as part of the playtime. Even activities like jumping on a trampoline, climbing, or an obstacle course can be very helpful to channelize their energies and at the same time teach some structure.

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Watch what they eat

What sort of diet your child follows can have a major impact on his energy levels! Food items that are high on carb and sugar can leave your child high on energy for hours together. A little sensibility while eating can have a positive impact on your child's thinking.


w w w. e x c l u s i v e f l o o r s . c o m

6

Group activities with peers

Kids learn a lot from their peers. Group activities can be a great way to channelize a child's energy. They are working together and learning all at the same time. But there's a challenge with this one too. Fights and indifferences could crop up teach them the value of sharing and friendship.

7

WHERE BUILDERS BUY

Reduce screen time

Kids these days love their gadgets but be cautious and monitor the time they spend looking at the screen. Studies have proven that screen time can increase a child's hyperactivity. Set a time limit on this one.

8

Teach them to sit idle & relax

While we have spoken a lot about spending the child's energy it is equally important for them to learn to relax their mind and body. After a good run or walk, teach them to sit idle, listening to soothing music. Even rocking your child or gently swinging them can be very relaxing. Changing the light settings (dimmer lights) can help them relax. They don't need to doze off but sit in one place to relax is important. Dealing with a high-spirited child can be very frustrating for parents. A little patience can do wonders and can help your child in numerous ways. While we know it is easier said than done, these simple steps when implemented meticulously can keep a tab on those energy levels!

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DARPAN HEALTH

A robust immune system ensures that you keep most illness at bay, we have

Simple Lifestyle

Changes To Boost Your

Immunity BY SHWETA KULKARNI

healthy immune system does act as a protective shield that lowers the risk of chronic he one word that each one illnesses and infectious of us has heard the most diseases. And while no diet, during this on-going global supplements or lifestyle health crisis is IMMUNITY. modifications, aside from While everyone is grappling physical distancing and with the COVID-19 pandemic practising proper hygiene, by following protocols can protect one from like social distancing, selfgetting COVID-19 quarantine, maintaining — there is no harm certain hygiene standards, in taking steps to avoiding contact with infected enhance your people etc., many health body’s defence experts have made claims that mechanism at a strong immunity can lessen the chances of an individual getting infected by the novel coronavirus. Although these claims are yet to be proven, the fact remains that a

Photos: iStock

T

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Get Some Good Sleep

Yes, it is as easy as that. Getting your daily 7-8 hours of siesta is where you begin with your health journey. When it comes to a robust immune system, sleep outlined simple plays an important role. The body not only heals and restores ways that will while you are asleep but also produces cytokines — a type of help boost your protein that targets infection and inflammation. body’s defence Insufficient sleep may mechanism. decrease the production of these protective proteins and will make this juncture as it can help you more susceptible to illnesses. fight off other potentially Studies show that getting proper harmful pathogens. sleep not only facilitates the And the good news immune system but also protects is — a few simple lifestyle you from other health conditions changes can actually help including heart disease, diabetes, strengthen your body’s and obesity. So, folks, it is time natural defence system. Here’s to cut down on your late-night how to give a boost to your Netflix binging and grab that body’s immune superpowers. much-needed snooze to boost your immunity system. Quick Tip: Try limiting screen time an hour before going to bed, as the light emitted from the phone, TV, and computer interferes with your body’s natural sleep cycle.


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Someone has rightly said – ‘there is no life without water.’ Clean and pure water can easily be termed as the world’s foremost medicine and hence it is no surprise that immunity and water are closely tied. H2O can do wonders to the body and is an excellent immune system booster. It transports nutrients and compounds in blood, keeps your body temperature in check, flushes out toxins and waste, and lubricates and cushions joints. Even the World Health Organization (WHO) has strongly recommended keeping your body hydrated, especially during this COVID-19 crisis. While water is the ideal choice, you can also add a dash of lemon juice to your water as there are several health benefits of drinking lemon water as well. Lemons are a great source of vitamin C, which again is known for its immune-boosting properties. Simultaneously one can have tea and natural fruit juices. However, it's best to avoid sweetened fruit juices and caffeine. Quick Tip: Set a reminder on your phone to notify you to drink water at regular intervals during the day.

Move Your Body

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Like it or not, but exercising is one of the easiest ways to improve your body’s defence mechanism. Several studies have shown that a moderate exercise regime is beneficial for your immune system. Recent research at the University of Bath, state that, in the short term, exercise can help the immune system find and deal with pathogens, and in the long term, regular exercise slows down changes that happen to the immune system with ageing, therefore reducing the risk of infections. Other studies also suggest that exercising also eases stress, improves metabolism and lessens your chances of getting heart diseases. It is advised to exercise for 20 to 30 minutes daily, depending on your stamina and the good news is that it needn’t have to be specifically in the gym. You can even exercise at home. Brisk walking, jogging, cycling are some other physical activities you can easily opt for. It’s about time you stop being a couch potato and start moving. Quick Tip: The easiest way to start moving is walking while you are attending a phone call.


Like it or not, but exercising is one of the easiest ways to improve your body’s defence mechanism. Several studies have shown that a moderate exercise regime is beneficial for your immune system.

Consume Wisely Lastly, a healthy balanced diet is a key to boosting your body’s immune system. Nutrition plays a huge role in your life and when you are deprived of essential nutrients you are bound to fall ill. So, eating right and wisely should top your charts if you wish to give a boost to your immune superpowers. Include a lot of nutrient-rich food and vegetables in your diet and opt for fresh food instead of processed ones. Have fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes, which has a proper combination of essential vitamins, minerals, fibres and antioxidants. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the better you feed the body with the nutrients it needs, the better it functions to keep chronic and acute diseases at bay. One more important thing is to avoid excess sugar, salt and oil in your diet. When you are focussing on boosting immunity, it best to also avoid excessive consumption of alcohol and nicotine as it hinders with immune functions. Quick Tip: While the internet is floating with articles related to immunity-boosting foods, for the best daily nutrition advice during the COVID-19 pandemic, do visit WHO’s online portal. A detailed flyer with regards to nutrition for adults is published on the site.

Bottom Line While these are the simplest lifestyle changes that you can adopt to boost your immune response against diseases and germs. It is imperative to note that these suggestions can’t prevent you from getting COVID-19, hence it is necessary to follow the guidelines shared by WHO and the Government.

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Beauty

Scent:

THE INVISIBLE ACCESSORY

W

Ramp up your fragrance wardrobe with expert advice

BY MICHELE MARKO A lifestyle journalist, Michele Marko is the former Arts & Life editor at the Vancouver Sun and Province newspapers. While writing about beauty, fashion, design, food and travel, she’s written on a variety subjects ranging from ethical beauty to couture fashion designers to discovering the best pizza in the world. Hint: It’s in Italy.

/ JUNE 2020 76 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

e all recognize how scent is evocative of a memory. Freshly cut grass conjures up carefree summers of childhood. The early spring blooms of hyacinth herald long, sunny days ahead. More than memory cues, scent can give us a sense of wellbeing, be it warmth and comfort or a boost in mood or confidence. It’s an invisible fashion accessory that wordlessly announces your presence. “Fragrances throughout history have changed so much. If you go back to the 1800s, fragrances were to protect us. It was the Purell of today,” says Sylvie Makoukji, Clarins’ National Training Director. “Today … we are wearing fragrance to identify ourselves. We’re wearing fragrance so that when I come in the room, you know who I am. It is your unique olfactive scent.” Applying scent, for many people, is an integral part of their daily morning ritual in preparing to face the day.

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“I have many, many fragrances and I choose my fragrances on a daily basis: complementing what I’m wearing, what I’d like to project into the world,” explains Julie Davis, Valmont’s Fragrance Business Manager for North America. Davis, who studied the science and art of perfumery at the Grasse Institute of Perfumery in France, freely admits that fragrance is a personal passion which is not only reflected in her work but in her more than 200-bottle collection of scents. Davis views wearing scent as an invisible tool that can give you a

psychological boost — something like Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. You can use fragrance to help you get into a certain mindset and smell it on your skin throughout the day to reinforce it. “It’s a little bit like setting the tone for the day: depending on what you’re doing, who you’re seeing and what you want to be projecting for the day,” she says. And as a fashion accessory, it makes sense to have more than one fragrance to wear—think of it as creating a fragrance wardrobe. For most of us, having 200 plus perfumes would perhaps be excessive but what would constitute a basic wardrobe of scent? “It’s always good to have at least three fragrances,” suggests Makoukji. “One fragrance that you will wear to work, for every day. One fragrance for special occasions if you’re going to go out [in the evening]. And one fragrance for the weekend.” There are multiple options for how one can expand their fragrance collection. Is it about looking for change direction of scent or is it about a variety of methods of application: think rollerball versus a spray versus a perfume brush. Even with sprays, there are a range of concentrations that serve different purposes (the higher the concentration of scent—as in parfum versus eau de toilette— the higher the price). Woodlot, a Vancouver-based natural home fragrance and skincare brand, created three scented mists for their collection. Formulated with essential oils, they’re meant to be multi-purpose: two can be sprayed on the face, body and surroundings and the third on just body and environment. “The mists were really inspired to be these really lightweight body sprays that you can take around with you though out the day. Whether it’s at the gym or you’re at your desk and you’re looking for a boost of creativity


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essential oils and an alcohol-free witch hazel.” How a fragrance is applied affects how it’s going to wear and smell. Rollerballs are popular because they bring down the price point on luxury brands. However, the fragrance often doesn’t smell the same as when it’s sprayed in a different concentration. That also goes for the gel perfume brush application. If you’re looking to expand but aren’t certain which fragrant direction to take, Makoukji recommends trying

or something to calm you down or a different headspace,” says Sonia Chhinji, who co-founded Woodlot five years ago with her husband, Fouad Farraj. The mists’ fragrances are formulated to serve a holistic purpose: to be calming, energizing or purifying. Chhinji was inspired by the Calgon bath oil commercials of the past, which she and her friends watched growing up, that promised to ‘take you away’ from everyday stresses.

/ JUNE 2020 78 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

“There really wasn’t something available that was comparable for a woman looking for something that is nice and lightly scented but not overwhelming but still all natural,” Chhinji recalls. “That’s what the mists were inspired by: Just a really beautiful simple blend that we used working with floral waters and

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a new one within a brand that you already know you like. It’s likely all the fragrances will be a part of the same olfactory family. “Coach has three fragrances. They’re all in the same olfactory family. One will be more woody and the other one will be more fruity. So, if you just want something slightly different, I would stay within the brand,” she advises. There are seven primary olfactive families: citrus, floral— which Makoukji says is the most popular olfactory family on the market for women, fougère or fern, wood, oriental, chypre (a combination patchouli, bergamot, rock rose and oakmoss) and leather.

Davis says she prefers woody fragrances because they’re grounded in the earth. She says they’re comforting and strengthening and give her a sense of bringing her feet back to the ground. “You tend to think of citrus as being bright and vivacious, but the combination of the citrus and the woods together create a gorgeous harmony,” Davis observes. “Bright Poppy (one of the fragrances in Valmont’s new Palazzo Nobile collection) would illustrate this: it opens with a bergamot note. Bergamot is considered a modern citrus ingredient. It has the characteristics of a citrus note meaning that’s sparkling. It’s fresh and energizing.” Davis says people often think it’s the one ingredient that is used throughout the fragrance that attracts them, but more likely it’s the personality of the fragrance. She thinks people miss out by being loyal to a specific ingredient rather than looking at similar fragrance personalities. “Are you someone drawn to darker, richer fragrances? Or are you someone who likes lighter, sparkling fragrances? Are you typically interested in fragrances that are aquatic or marine or ozonic—which means airy or watery?” Trying a scent on your skin, before you decide to purchase it, is imperative. “Before you buy a fragrance, you must try it on your skin,” Makoukji insists. “Give it at least 15 minutes and you will see how it develops on your skin. You have to let the fragrance breathe.” Davis concurs saying that you have to live with a fragrance, spending some time with it to see how it develops. “Each person’s skin reacts differently to a perfume which is fun and exciting but can be disappointing. Sometimes you have a friend whose perfume smells amazing on her and you want to get it and then you realize it doesn’t smell the same on you as it does on her,” Davis explains. The upside to that is that two people can wear the same fragrance, but it can smell different but lovely on both of them. “If you wear a Jimmy choo fragrance and I wear the fragrance, it won’t smell the same. We have our own DNA and


when you put a fragrance on it, it creates a whole new meaning,” Makoukji says. When you do apply the scent for a test run, don’t rub your wrists together. Let it absorb into your skin. Otherwise, you’ll lose its essence by breaking the scent’s molecules and you won’t experience the true depth of the fragrance. So where should you spray or dab, your fragrance? The experts like the cloud effect that you walk through but that can be met with admonishment from the anti-perfume brigade. Davis suggests that if you want to be discreet with scent, follow the romantic advice of spritzing it where you’d like to be kissed. To ensure the longevity of your investment, fragrances need to be stored properly. This means keeping them away from humidity, heat and direct sunlight. Makoukji recommends keeping them in a drawer and rotating them out as you use them. Davis says there is a guaranteed shelf life of two years.

“Are you someone drawn to darker, richer fragrances? Or are you someone who likes lighter, sparkling fragrances? Are you typically interested in fragrances that are aquatic or marine or ozonic—which means airy or watery?” “In my experience, fragrances last longer,” she says. “Well-made fragrances that are well cared for will last longer than two years. It depends on the ingredients as well because naturals tend to change more quickly and tend to be unstable. Top notes are where you’ll usually have the change happen first.” When expanding your fragrance collection, keep in mind that fragrance is an emotion, advises Makoukji. And that’s how we respond to it—from somewhere deep inside us—whether it’s something newly discovered or one that sparks a memory. When you wear it, it envelops you creating a mindset, an invisible personal style statement. “It’s like your second skin or like you’re putting on a trench coat” Makoukji observes. “Burberry used to talk about how each fragrance is a trench coat because it wraps around you.”

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MADE IN INDIA (604) 501-2577 | 8312 128 St, Surrey, BC

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MADE IN INDIA (604) 501-2577 | 8312 128 St, Surrey, BC

PHOTO: A MASTER MEDIA Models : CLEMENTINA TOSO & Madison Jones MAKEUP & HAIR: Make up by Fateh Location: Maharaja Restaurant

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MADE IN INDIA (604) 501-2577 | 8312 128 St, Surrey, BC

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165-12899 80th ave Surrey BC

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165-12899 80th ave Surrey BC

604.503.6330

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DARPAN ACTIVITIES

Make the most of your backyard this summer with these kid-friendly activities.

Go Backyard Camping Backyard camping is a cheap, fun way to make some memories with your children while you wait for the provincial campgrounds to reopen. Just pitch a tent in your backyard, complete with sleeping bags and hot cocoa for those campfire stories. Make the experience more authentic by roasting marshmallows and hotdogs on a fire pit if you have one. In a pinch, you could also use your grill to whip up some delicious s’mores.

EnjoyYour

Enjoy a Movie Under the Stars

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Upgrade family movie nights by constructing a simple outdoor theatre in your backyard. If you have a projector, all you will need to do is secure a white sheet on a fence or a wall for the screen. If you want to go the extra mile, you could order a canvas screen off Amazon or build one yourself using PVC pipes. String some fairy lights to create an ambiance. Complete the look by arranging cozy blankets, cushions, or folding chairs for the family and don’t forget the popcorn and snacks.

This Summer

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ummer is almost upon us and there has never been a better time to slow down and enjoy the outdoors. While many of the usual summer activities in Vancouver have been put on hold due to COVID-19, you can still make the most of the warm weather by enjoying it from the comfort of your backyard. Rustle up some cherished family memories with some of these fun backyard activities.

Plant a Vegetable Garden Starting a simple vegetable garden with your children is a great way for them to get outdoors and perhaps appreciate their vegetables a little bit more! When gardening with children, the key is to focus on easy-to-grow crops that have short growing seasons. Consider simple crops like lettuce, bush beans, carrots, radishes, snow peas, or cherry tomatoes. Once you’ve completed your harvest, mix up some fresh summer salads for a backyard picnic!

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Work on a DIY Backyard Project A good way to enjoy your backyard is to make something special for it, as a family. Whether it’s something easy as a birdfeeder or complex like a tree house, you’ll be sure to have a memorable time. Some other ideas you could explore include a garden planter, a stone path, a DIY fire pit, a wooden trellis or garden bench. The sky’s the limit here!


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Have a Family Tea Party If you’re looking to switch up the usual backyard barbecues, an afternoon tea party makes for a fun alternative. Rustle up some sandwiches, mini desserts, your favourite baked goods, cheese and crackers, and a pot of hot or iced tea to around it up. If you have a patio set with a table, you could lay out a tablecloth and table settings for a fancier touch or keep it nice and stress-free with a picnic blanket on the lawn.

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Create Your Personal Water Park If the kids enjoy visiting spray parks or water parks on those hot summer days, you can recreate the experience in the comfort of your backyard. Construct a homemade waterpark by setting up a garden sprinkler and a slip and slide. Set up a small inflatable pool if you have one as well and provide spray bottles or water balloons for maximum fun. You could also fill a bucket of water with large sponges for some friendly water fights!

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Enjoy Some Easy Lawn Games Set up some easy lawn games to enjoy with the family. Classics like croquet, giant jenga, lawn bowling and bocce ball are always fun and can be easily ordered online. You can also make your own kid-friendly lawn games. For instance, you could make lawn scrabble set by cutting squares from cardboard boxes or heavy paper, and painting on the letters. Another simple DIY idea is to create a lawn bowling set by painting old soda bottles and using an old tennis ball.

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DARPAN Weddings

Photography: Zaheer Molu

G URDEV & A NISH

Wedding Photos by Prabhjit S.

Q: How did you meet?

Sabharwal,

Engagement Photos by Sohal Studios

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Anish: Gurdev was in her third year of Internal Medicine residency and I was new to the city, having just moved to Vancouver for my MBA. Being busy young professionals we actually met online and things blossomed from there.

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Q: What do you love most about one another? Gurdev: Anish is the kindest, most patient, caring human being I have ever met. He makes me laugh all the time. He respects and supports who I am as an individual, but we also have common goals and passions that we work on together. He is someone that I am privileged to build a life with.

We want to be happy, healthy, and contributing members to society. Our goals will continue to evolve as we do, but I know we will be there to support each other.ˎ Anish: Gurdev is the most caring, loving, and hard working person I have ever met. She makes me extremely happy and really understands me. She makes me strive for more and want to achieve incredible things in life. I can’t wait to do that together with her.

Q: Could you share your proposal story? Anish: Gurdev is a private person and she loves being outdoors, especially close to the water. She had a lifestyle photo shoot set up with Sohal Studios. With the help of her sisters and Sohal Studios, I was able to surprise her during the photo shoot by proposing at Pitt Lake. It was


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DARPAN Weddings to have such incredible family & friends. The show of love and support that day is something we will never forget.

Q: Can you describe your outfits? We had gone to India in November and bought outfits for our week long big fat Indian wedding which was planned for July of this year. Unfortunately, we had to cancel, as many couples did, due to COVID-19. Gurdev: I settled for a comfortable knee length white dress with lace sleeves & nude pumps. Anish: I wore a tailored grey suit with black shoes with a black tie to match our dog Max’s black bow tie. Definitely very different from

a private moment with beautiful nature surrounding us which I know she really appreciated. Gurdev is not someone who is easily surprised, so it was amazing that we were all able to pull it off! Kam and Gurm were able to capture some incredible moments which we will cherish forever.

Q: Describe your wedding day. What was your favourite moment? The We loved that our civil ceremony was small and intimate. There was something beautiful about the simplicity of it all. We were supposed to have our big Indian wedding in July, however, given the circumstances and the uncertainty of when it would be safe to celebrate in person with our loved ones, we decided to have a COVID-friendly civil ceremony. Never in my life did we think we would have our families tune in to our wedding over Zoom and have a wedding where we couldn't have more than three people physically in attendance, but now that it's all over I honestly can't imagine a more special wedding day. We especially loved the surprise car parade after the ceremony and appreciated the surprise decoration of our house by our family. Our new neighbours mentioned in the days after that it brightened their days especially with the

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Never in my life did we think we would have our families tune in to our wedding over Zoom and have a wedding where we couldn't have more than three people physically in attendance, but now that it's all over I honestly can't imagine a more special wedding day. ËŽ current climate of COVID-19.

Q: Could you tell us about your reception? Gurdev: We are yet to have a formal reception but we were pleasantly surprised after our civil ceremony. Our closest family and friends showed up in a huge car parade. They dressed up in their Indian outfits & had beautiful signs and balloons. Music was blasting from their cars, and people were dancing out of their sunroofs. It brought so much cheer and joy to our special day. We are so happy and blessed TM

the decadent Indian outfits we had planned to wear to our religious ceremonies and wedding events.

Q: Where did you honeymoon? Gurdev: Nowhere yet! Anish was back to work first thing Monday morning and I went back to work within 48 hours in ICU. This was during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic here in BC. We have yet to travel for our honeymoon (for obvious reasons) but would welcome any suggestions!


Q: What are your goals as a couple? We want to be happy, healthy, and contributing members to society. Our goals will continue to evolve as we do, but I know we will be there to support each other. We believe it’s very important to have respect for your partner, support each other’s ambitions, and to make sure to lift each other up. We hope we continue to do that for the rest of our lives.

Q: What are the strengths of your marriage? We both have similar upbringings in terms of our principles, beliefs and values. It’s so important to have that foundation. We have mutual respect for each other as individuals but most importantly, we are both each other’s best friends and balance each other’s personalities well.

Q: If you could provide any advice to other married couples, what would it be? We are in no position to be giving advice at this point! We are newly married so we are learning & getting advice as we go along. We will say that finding someone who is your best friend and who has similar core fundamental beliefs just makes everything a bit easier. Be patient, support each other, and grow together.

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DARPAN TRAVEL

Virtual

Tourism How to Travel the World Virtually This Summer BY TARANA RANA

W

Photos: iStock

hile travel for leisure has come to a near standstill during the coronavirus pandemic, thanks to technology, you can virtually visit almost any place in the blink of an eye, through your trusty laptop or smartphone. And while nothing beats first-hand experience, stuckat-home travellers can still find some solace in these breathtaking virtual experiences while everyone stays safe. Here are 7 virtual tours and experiences you should check out.

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Visit Machu Picchu in Peru Machu Picchu is one iconic attraction that is on most people’s travel bucket list. Built around AD1450, the construction of how the sprawling Inca citadel was built remains a mystery. You can take a virtual tour of this famous aracholoegical attraction on YouVisit’s website which has a series of 360-degree images. The tour also includes a voiceover guide with information on the architecture, history and resident alpacas. Visit:www.youvisit.com/tour/ machupicchu

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Virtual experiences and digital tours offer a brief respite during these unfamiliar, unprecedented times. Here’s a list of some places travelers can experience — without having to leave their couch.


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DARPAN TRAVEL

Explore the World’s Largest Cave Located in Central Vietnam, Hang Son Doòng is the largest cave on Earth and was explored by scientists in 2009. You can now visit this natural wonder through a virtual trek available on National Geographic’s website, which offers 360-degree images and atmospheric sound effects. You can also zoom into the images for details of the cave’s geology and flora. Tour Hang Son Doòng: www.nationalgeographic.com/newsfeatures/son-doongcave/2/#s=pano37

Visit the San Diego Zoo One of the most visited zoos in the world, the San Diego Zoo is known for their open-air, cageless natural habitats and while it is currently closed, you can still get a glimpse of the animals who reside there. Thanks to live cams placed in each habitat, you can get a daily dose of animal cuteness, as you watch koalas, tigers, baboons, penguins, and more, on their website. Visit the San Diego Zoo: www.zoo. sandiegozoo.org/live-cams

Take in Some Opera at the Met

Walk the Great Wall of China Considered as one of the world’s wonders, you can now take a virtual hike along the Great Wall of China. Over 2,000 years old, the Great Wall stretches more than 3,000 miles across several provinces of northern China, making it an impressive ancient structure. The virtual tour showcases the ancient fortifications, views from the watchtower as well as how the tower looks in winter.

The Metropolitan Opera in New York is streaming free nightly performances of some of their most iconic shows on their website, including classic works by Verdi, Wagner, and Puccini. The streams go live at 7.30 PM EST every day and are available for 20 hours after the performance. If you’re an opera fan, or wondered what live opera was like, now’s your chance to enjoy a free show!

Visit the Great Wall of China: www. thechinaguide.com/destination/great-wall-ofchina

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Stream the Met Opera: www.metopera.org

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Tour the Royal Residences in England Curious as to how the British Royal Family selfisolates? Visit royal.uk where you can take a virtual tour of Windsor Castle and get a glimpse of this 11th-century fortress that serves as the Queen’s private home as well as a royal residence where she performs formal duties. It’s also where she and Prince Philip are presently self-isolating amid the pandemic. While you’re on the website, you can also check out some of their other royal residences, such as the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the Queen’s official residence in Scotland.

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Tour Winsdor Castle: www.royal.uk/virtual-tourswindsor-castle

Soak In Some Art Thanks to the Google Arts & Culture Collections, you can view high-resolution images and videos online of famous artworks and cultural artifacts from around the world. The collection features online content from over 2,000 leading museums and archives. This means that in one sitting, art lovers can get from the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam to the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles and continue to hop through other prominent art galleries. Access the Google Arts & Culture Collection: artsandculture.google.com/partner

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Tour the World’s Top Museums When you’re travelling to new places, visiting a museum or art gallery is a great way to appreciate the culture and history of the place. Luckily, many worldrenowned museums and art galleries are currently offering virtual tours of their spaces. The Louvre in Paris, the world’s largest art museum, has four tours available on their website. You can also get up close and personal to the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican Museums. Spend some time admiring the renowned renaissance ceiling, painted by Michelangelo, which took 4 years to complete. When you’re done, you can check out the other tours available in the Vatican museum on their website.

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Visit the Louvre: www.louvre.fr/en/visites-en-ligne Sistine Chapel and Vatican Museums: www.museivaticani.va

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DARPAN AutoREVIEW

2021

CADILLAC ESCALADE

GOING WHERE NO SUV HAS GONE BEFORE BY BENJAMIN YONG

“We summarize in the following way Escalades' exclusive new technology features: see and be seen, hear and be heard, move and be moved,” says Cadillac president Steve Carlisle.

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T

he Cadillac Escalade has always been about doing things big — not just sizewise, although the fifth-generation model is indeed an impressive physical specimen, and the most spacious yet with an additional 264 millimetres of third-row legroom. But the redesigned vehicle is also making a splash in the digital department offering some segment

and even industry first technological innovations. “We’re taking 20 years of Escalade, 20 years of luxury SUV leadership and raising that to a whole new level,” said Cadillac president Steve Carlisle at a presentation shortly before the official reveal in early February. “We summarize in the following way Escalades' exclusive new technology features: see and be seen, hear and be heard, move and be moved.” He added. The interior of the 2021 certainly needs to be seen in person to be believed. Big screens have been in cars for some time now, but not a curved, paper-thin OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) unit appearing to around the driver like a high-end gaming monitor or TV. Unlike a traditional backlit LCD display, this one permits the control of individual LEDs translating into crisp images where the blacks appear pure black, rather than a hazy grey, and vibrant colours pop out from virtually any viewing angle. Thanks to a generous 38.3 diagonal inches of real estate, the


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PHOTOS: CADILLAC PRESSROOM

DARPAN AutoREVIEW

The redesigned luxury SUV is also making a splash in the digital department offering some segment and even industry first technological innovations.

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touch-sensitive panel is fully customizable and can display things like cool augmented reality-enabled navigation, which overlays directional arrows on top of live street views to perfectly point out the proper route. It’s not only the advanced GPS making the drive much easier. Similar to the system originally launched on the CT6 sedan, an advanced version of Super Cruise driver assistance is available. Being introduced is automated lane change: when in traffic, simply flick the turn signal lever and various cameras and sensors help automatically guide the SUV safely over one lane.

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Tech aside, the interior of the Escalade is nicer than ever. As mentioned earlier there’s a lot of extra room for passengers in the back due to the total overall vehicle length growing approximately 180 millimetres. Cargo capacity, too, has become enlarged, increasing an incredible 80 per cent to 773 litres behind the rear bench. Packing a rockin’ stereo is a given for the iconic model. And the team at Cadillac really went all out partnering with acoustic equipment manufacturer AKG. Working alongside these makers of professional-grade microphones and headphones, the result is a 36-speaker setup in select trims (19 speakers plus a subwoofer are standard) engulfing listeners in high fidelity sound. Although there were no vehicles available yet to test, the specs seem promising. A 420 horsepower 6.2-litre V8 gasoline and a 277 horse 3.0-litre turbocharged six cylinder diesel engine will be sold, both producing 460 lb-ft of torque and mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission. Independent rear suspension and optional adaptive air

suspension with magnetic ride control should ensure a smooth and comfortable experience for occupants at all times, as the latter is capable of constantly reading road conditions and self-adjusting to mitigate any bumps encountered. And how about the looks? Well, the difference between the outgoing SUV and the new one is night and day. Split into two pillars: Luxury/Premium Luxury/Platinum Luxury grades focus on what the name suggests — think lots of chrome detailing — while Sport and Platinum Sport go in a more performance-influenced aesthetic, embodied for example by the black mesh front grille. All Escalades share razor thin horizontally oriented headlamp housings, stacked overtop complementary vertical signature LED daytime running light on either side of the front bumper. Massive 22-inch alloy wheels are standard, as are dual exhaust tips. Pricing and supplementary information is expected closer to the official production release later in the summer. In addition, an extended wheelbase ESV variant will follow closely behind.


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2020

HIGH OUTPUT MACHINE

BMW X3 M BY BENJAMIN YONG

For the first time, the company is rolling out an M version of the X3 Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV), which DARPAN recently had the opportunity to give a go.

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MW has shown time and time again that it is not in the business of producing dull crossovers. Need further proof? For the first time, the company is rolling out an M version of the X3 Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV), which DARPAN recently had the opportunity to give a go. Full disclosure — I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. I’m not an SUV guy. A cliché statement for an automotive

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writer perhaps, but I usually prefer vehicles with a lower centre of gravity. However, every so often a model like the X3 M comes along successfully swaying my opinion some. Making this high output machine move is the most powerful straight-six engine made by the company yet. The 3.0-litre TwinPower Turbo mill pushes a total of 473 horses and 442 lb-ft of torque, mated to an

eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission. The exhaust note sounds raw and untamed upon acceleration, and frankly surprised me (in a good way) a little given the platform. In typical BMW fashion, the xDrive all-wheel drive system is rear biased to provide a sportier ride, sending torque to any of the four corners when extra traction is needed, and helps the vehicle rocket from 0 to 100 km/h in a scant 4.2 seconds. To tailor the motoring experience, users can select one of three different adjustable suspension settings providing various degrees of comfort and agility. None provide a truly bumpfree experience — that’s what the normal X3 is for. Similarly, an M Dynamic Mode can be toggled on or off, the former allowing increased throttle response and controlled wheel slip for increased fun when the road turns windy.


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PHOTOS: BMW PRESSROOM

DARPAN AutoREVIEW

The 3.0-litre TwinPower Turbo mill pushes a total of 473 horses and 442 lb-ft of torque, mated to an eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission.

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The signature M treatment really kicks the SAV’s styling up a notch. A sensibly sized kidney grille and the big air intakes are perfectly proportioned, while 20-inch lightweight alloy wheels, unique badging and quad tailpipe M sport exhaust all set the model apart. An optional M Carbon exterior package adds carbon fibre trim to the front bumper, mirror caps and rear valance. The unit BMW loaned us looked stunning in the dark Donington Grey Metallic paint colour. Inside, electric sport seats, Vernasca two-tone leather upholstery, M leather steering

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wheel and illuminated shift knob really give a visual pop, creating a luxurious and performanceoriented cabin. Our tester had the Premium Package (+$3,300) installed, comprised of side sunshades, heated seating all around, ventilated front seats, Parking Assistant Plus (autonomous manoeuvring into parallel

or perpendicular spots) with Surround View, wireless charging capability and Wi-Fi hotspot connectivity. Also equipped was the Advanced Driver Assistance Package (+$1,500) bundling digital safety functionality such as lane departure alert and keep assist, frontal collision warning, automatic emergency braking, dynamic cruise control and a few others. Even for a purist like myself, the X3 M proved a hoot behind the wheel and discerning enthusiasts owe it to themselves to at least go out for a test drive. Still not sure? Then check out the available Competition variant featuring 30 extra horsepower, as well as additional exterior flourishes including gloss black grille and two exclusive paint colours, 21inch polished black twin-spoke wheels and more.


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DARPAN AutoREVIEW

2020

WITH ROOM FOR FAMILY & FRIENDS

MERCEDES BENZ GLB BY BENJAMIN YONG

“The clear forms with reduced lines and powerful surfaces convey our design philosophy of Sensual Sensual Purity," says Gorden Wagener, Daimler AG chief design officer.

I

n recent times MercedesBenz has spent considerable resources rounding out its SUV lineup on the smaller end of the scale: first with the GLA in 2014, and then this year, introducing the brand new GLB. One of the differentiators setting it apart from class competitors is the availability of third row seating and accommodation for seven adults, among others. Although technically a subcompact crossover, slotting in-between the GLA and bigger brother the GLC, the exterior looks larger than most.

Measuring 4,634 millimetres long, 1,834 millimetres wide and 1,658 millimetres high, the generous proportions helps give passengers up front a full 1,035 of headroom and those a row behind 967 millimetres of legroom. Aesthetically, the vehicle embodies characteristics from the aforementioned two models combining the curviness of the former and the rugged details of the latter. The GLB features an upright front fascia dominated by a 3-D diamond block mesh grille, which houses a single

HIGHLIGHTS MSRP: $43,990 Motor: 2.0-litre four cylinder Horsepower: 205 @ 5,800 rpm Torque (lb-ft): 221 @ 1,800 rpm Gearbox: Eight-speed manual Layout: Front engine, all-wheel drive Fuel economy: 9.0 L/100 km mixed city/highway (manufacturer estimate)

vented blade and large threepoint emblem part of the $1,700 Sport Package also bundling 19-inch wheels, upgraded brake and AMG body aero. LED head and fog lights are included on the single Canadian market 250 grade. "Its design lends the Mercedes-Benz GLB an unmistakable SUV character," says Gorden Wagener, Daimler AG chief design officer, in a news release. "The clear forms

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DARPAN AutoREVIEW

The in-house AMG motorsport arm of the German manufacturer provides another

with reduced lines and powerful surfaces convey our design philosophy of Sensual Purity." Short overhangs and black protective cladding underneath the bumpers, side sills and around the wheel arches give the car a cool ready-for anything appearance. But can it actually

PHOTOS: MERCEDES PRESS ROOM

option for speed fanatics in the Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 possessing 302 horses and 295 lb-ft of torque.

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tackle paths less travelled? Enter Mercedes-Benz’s wellrespected 4MATIC all-wheel drive system is standard equipment allowing fully variable torque distribution between the two axles. Drivers are able to fine tune their experience via the DYNAMIC SELECT function that changes the characteristics of 4MATIC. For example Eco/Comfort mode sets the front/rear bias to 80:20 for optimal fuel economy, while Sport is 70:30 for a larger focus on handling. When Off-Road is activated the power is split at an even 50:50 for maximum traction to help the crossover out of any sticky situations encountered. The sole motor under the hood of the GLB 250 is a 2.0-litre turbocharged four cylinder producing 221 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque, mated to an eight-speed automatic

transmission. These stats may not leap off the page, however the output is good for a 0 to 100 km/h acceleration time of approximately 6.9 seconds. The humble performance numbers is more than sufficient for the demands of the day-to-day duties of the average motorist, myself included. Of course, the in-house AMG motorsport arm of the German manufacturer provides another option for speed fanatics in the Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 possessing 302 horses and 295 lb-ft of torque. As mentioned above, customers have the choice of adding a second reclining bench that can still accommodate 179 litres of cargo behind. Fold all rear seating down and the storage space balloons to 1,755 litres making the SUV perfect for hauling family members, gear, or a healthy combination of both. The situation elsewhere in the interior isn’t too shabby either, with MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience) infotainment allowing intelligent voice control of most on-board systems using the keyword “Hey Mercedes,” and plenty of aluminum details on switches and trim pieces. Starting at $43,990, the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB 250 4MATIC is built alongside the new entry-level A-Class sedan in the company’s latest Aguascalientes factory in Mexico.


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DARPAN AutoREVIEW

2020

TOYOTA’S LEGENDARY

AWD PRIUS BY BENJAMIN YONG

Unlike most traditional AWD setups, this new entry to the Prius lineup has a fuel economy rating of 4.5 L/100 km in the city and 4.9 on the highway.

/ JUNE 2020 108 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

N

ow, car shoppers looking to get into greener motoring have another option that offers the extra benefit of traction in all weather conditions: Toyota’s legendary Prius gains available all-wheel drive. Called AWD-e(lectric), the system works on an ondemand basis requiring no centre differential or torque management device, or even a front-to-rear driveshaft. Instead, an independent electric motor

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HIGHLIGHTS MSRP: $32,990 Motor: 1.8-litre four cylinder + two electric motors Horsepower: 121 (net)

spins the rear wheels at speeds Torque (lb-ft): 105 @ 3,600 rpm from a dead stop up to 10 km/h to help get the vehicle moving, and Gearbox: Six-speed automatic can provide power up to 70 km/h Layout: Front engine, all-wheel when additional grip is required. drive Otherwise it stays off to conserve Fuel economy: 5.4 L/100 km fuel consumption. mixed city/highway (observed) Unlike most traditional AWD setups, which can be quite gasoline hungry due to lots of moving parts, this new entry to the Prius lineup the front-wheel drive Prius — still has a fuel economy rating of 4.5 being carried at dealers — rated at L/100 km in the city and 4.9 on the 4.4 and 4.6, respectively. highway. That’s nearly the same as Regular models are equipped with a lithium-ion battery, while the AWD-e versions utilize a new compact Nickel-Metal Hydride battery designed to maintain a high level of performance even in cold weather conditions. Installed under the rear bench, there is no change in cargo space, still offering 1,855 litres when the 60:40 split back seats are folded down. Rear legroom, at 848 millimetres, is generous for its segment. From the outside, the vehicle doesn’t appear any different from the standard variant that was given


PHOTOS: TOYOTA MEDIA GALLERY

a styling makeover in 2018 highlighted by elongated headlamp housings and Z-shaped taillamps. The foglamps have been relocated to either side of the larger central lower air intake. A subtle AWD-e badge sits on the tailgate. All Prii feature plenty of standard equipment such as energy-saving bi-LED lighting, backup camera, heated front seats, push button start and the Toyota Safety Sense P suite of driver assistance technologies. These include emergency braking, land departure assist, automatic high beams and radar cruise control. Data geeks rejoice, as there’s no shortage of real-time analytics provided to help anyone become a greener motorist. The 4.2-inch Dual Multi-Information Display installed in the middle of the dashboard is customizable and can be programmed to show an Energy Monitor, Hybrid System indicator and Eco Score, Eco Savings Record, Drive Monitor, Eco Wallet, Eco Diary and much more. Our loaded Technology trim bundled the Tesla-esque 11.6-inch high definition touchscreen (instead of the 6.1-inch unit found in the base) responsible for not just entertainment functions but things like climate as well. Although it is stunning from an aesthetic point of view, the screen is bright enough to light up the entire cabin at night. Response to finger inputs is fairly instantaneous, however a physical volume knob is sorely needed do dial in quick, precise adjustments during driving. The 1.8-litre four-cylinder gasoline engine carries over, mated to two motors/generators and an electronically controlled continuously variable transmission. Total output remains 121 horsepower and 105 lb-ft of torque. It’s not a quick car by any means, and at nowhere was this more apparent than trying to get up a steep Burnaby hill without losing momentum.

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DARPAN BOLLYWOOD

BOLLYWOOD

IN COVID-19 TIMES

BY SHWETA KULKARNI

While impending movies got postponed, shootings got halted, and theatres got sealed, our beloved celebrities finally got their much-needed ‘me-time’ and ever since are busy giving us glimpses of their quarantine life through social media feeds. Some like

Cinema halls are shut, shooting schedules have come to a standstill, and crores are at high-stakes. Here’s how COVID-19 pandemic is affecting Bollywood.

C

elebrities are doing household chores, big-ticket movies have got postponed, cinema halls are shut, shooting schedules have come to a standstill, and crores are at highstakes. Here’s how COVID-19 pandemic is affecting Bollywood. Hindi film aficionados were eagerly looking forward to 2020. After all, it was supposed to be the year where Bollywood promised a grand turnout at the box-office with massy as

/ JUNE 2020 110 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

well as content-rich films like – Sooryanvanshi, Radhe: Your Most Wanted Bhai, 83, Laxmii Bomb, Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2, Prithviraj, Brahmastra, Gangubai Kathiawadi, Maidaan, and Laal Singh Chaddha among others. But alas, instead of a bouquet of entertainment, 2020 greeted us with the dreaded COVID-19 aka the novel coronavirus and like every other industry across the globe, Bollywood too came to a standstill.

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Katrina Kaif, Ritiesh Deshmukh, Malaika Arora, Rajkummar Rao are engaging in household chores and others like Hrithik Roshan, Deepika Padukone and Alia Bhatt are learning new skills. In fact, the Bhaaijan of Bollywood aka Salman Khan, who is quarantined at his farmhouse on the outskirts of Mumbai, even released his own original track called – Tere Bina during this lockdown. Apart from investing time in all these activities during the quarantine period, many in the film fraternity have also come forward and extended a helping hand to the needy in this crisis. From the likes of Akshay Kumar, Anushka Sharma, Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan to Kartik Aaryan, Vicky Kaushal, Nana Patekar, Bhumi Pednekar, and Sonu Sood among several others are doing their bit to help the nation and the underprivileged in these trying times. Obviously, if one looks through the rose-tinted glasses of celebrities, everything in Tinsel Ville may seem merry even in these COVID-19 times. However, there are obvious lines of worry on the forehead of producers, financers, distributors and theatre owners as this over 180 billion rupees film industry is going through its worst phase ever during the Great Lockdown.


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Late Irrfan Khan’s last film Angrezi Medium was the first Bollywood film to bear the brunt of COVID-19’s impact. The film which released on March 13, 2020, had to be pulled out of theatres due to the lockdown demanded by this pandemic. It later was released on an OTT platform but by then the damage was done as the film failed to bring in any great box-office collections. Next came the news of one of the big releases of 2020 – Sooryanvanshi – getting indefinitely postponed. The Rohit Shetty film featuring Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif was poised to release on March 24. In an official statement shared by Akshay, the makers made the announcement — “Sooryavanshi is an experience that we have created for you with over a year of dedication and hard work, and the response we received for its trailer was nothing less than electrifying and made it clear that this film truly belongs to its audience... We have been as excited as you are to present the film to you and your family, but due to the recent outburst of the COVID - 19 (Coronavirus), we, the makers,

/ JUNE 2020 112 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

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Our beloved celebrities finally got their much-needed ‘me-time’ and ever since are busy giving us glimpses of their quarantine life

However, there are obvious lines of worry on the forehead of producers, financers, distributors and theatre owners as this over 180 billion rupees film industry is going through its worst phase ever during the Great Lockdown.

TM

have decided to postpone the release of your film Sooryavanshi, keeping in mind the health and safety of our beloved audience... And therefore, Sooryavanshi will be back for you just when the time is right... After all, safety comes first... Until then, keep the excitement alive, take good care of yourself and stay strong... We shall pull through this... -Team SOORYAVANSHI.” Taking Rohit Shetty’s lead, filmmakers of other films like Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar, Haathi Mere Sathi and 83 also decided to push forward the release dates of their films. Commenting on it, 83 director Kabir Khan wisely said, “We were really itching to show the film to the world. But some things are way bigger than all this. The whole planet today is on standstill so I think watching a film becomes a much lower priority.” However, it is not just the films’ release that got affected by the novel coronavirus pandemic, movie shoots of big-budgeted films like Radhe: Your Most Wanted Bhai, Takht, Brahmastra, Gangubai Kathiawadi among others got cancelled. Karan Johar, whose film Takht was about to go on floors in April in Europe, suffered

Photos: Instagram & movies featured

through social media feeds.


DARPAN BOLLYWOOD

obvious losses as his team had already started constructing the sets in Europe. However, KJo took it positively. He said, “We had a palace in Florence that we were shooting in and we were shooting in Spain at the Alhambra. We had recced this for two years. It's not one of the major concerns one should have right now. It's what happens.” Karan is not the only one who has suffered losses. Even Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Gangubai Kathiawadi, starring Alia Bhatt had gone on the floors. A concerned unit member shared, “We had started shooting for the film. The sets were constructed at film city; however, we don’t know what will happen to the sets now. They might even get damaged in rain during June.” That’s not all, trade experts predict major losses for the film industry not just this year but even in the coming year. According to a Financial Express report, the film industry faced a decline of 29.1 per cent to Rs 1062.4 crore in the first quarter of 2020, which stood at Rs 1499.4 crore for the same period last year. While Covid-19 has affected the shooting schedules and even the livelihoods of thousands of cine workers, the Bollywood box-office has perhaps taken the biggest blow. Cinema halls across India are shut since March and now with producers considering an online release for their films, the situation has further got aggravated. Shoojit Sircar's Gulabo Sitabo, starring Amitabh Bachchan and Ayushmann Khurrana, and Vidya Balan’s Shakuntala Devi are two films that shall be skipping theatres and releasing online. Allegedly, the makers of Laxmmi Bomb, Ludo, Gunjan Saxena and Khaali Peeli are negotiating deals with digital platform giants like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Hotstar + Disney to release their films on OTT. While cine buffs are obviously excited, exhibitors aren’t sharing the same sentiment. Soon after the announcement about Gulabo Sitabo’s online release was made – INOX, the biggest multiplex chain in India, released a strongly worded statement stating, “Such acts, though isolated, vitiate the atmosphere of mutual partnership and paint these content producers as fair-weather friends rather than all-weather life-long partners.” Also expressing discontent, CEO of PVR pictures – Kamal Gianchandani said in an interview, “We are disappointed with some of our producers deciding to go straight to streaming platforms. We were hoping that the Producers would accede to our request to hold back their film’s release till cinemas reopened.”

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SOUTH ASIANS AROUND THE GLOBE

international marketing, business relations and management into her own production company, Mustang Productions. The venture covers both sides of the fashion industry, the creative and the commercial one. Two years ago, Sadia moved her operations from London to New York. Heading to the United States was never the plan and the executive had to start all over again: “I wondered if I should continue doing what I was doing or go down a different route. I worked so hard to establish this platform, I would have been a pity if I let it go.” Sadia persisted and brought Fashion Parade –Mustang flagship

SADIA

SIDDIQUI BY JORGE IGNACIO CASTILLO

“When things don’t come easy, you figure it out and you get there. That teaches you resilience.”

W

hen your area of specialty is producing fashion

event showcasing South Asian designers– from London to NY: “It was one of my best shows. The press we received described our diversity-based fashion show as a brand new concept.” The pandemic hit just as Mustang was founding its footing, forcing Sadia and other entrepreneurs in the field to take stock and consider options like rebranding or diversifying. In Sadia’s case, she has pivoted to video-blogging, not as a new business, but as a personal branding activity: “It’s called Truly Sadia. It’s not strictly a fashion blog, it’s more about lifestyle. I produce all of it, from start to finish. I was used to work with teams, so I’m learning a lot.” New episodes are added weekly.

Q&A How has your upbringing in Pakistan shaped your worldview? Being from Pakistan has taught me to be resilient. I love my country and have deep roots, but things in Pakistan are not run in a systematic way. When things don’t come easy, you figure it out and you get there. That teaches you resilience. My country is used to hardships. When something like this (COVID) happens in a Western economy, people are shaken up. In Pakistan, people get up and get on with their lives. South Asians around the world have made significant contributions to the countries that have received them. How do you explain this phenomenon? I’ve seen kids from Pakistan and India do extremely well in university. They come from a family structure that has propelled them, they’ve been told education is everything to succeed in life. Parental involvement in developing countries like Pakistan and India helps children develop the inner-confidence to go out there and reach their goals. Unfortunately, only a portion of the population gets great education. If everybody were to get it, we would be somewhere else. What is the biggest misconception in the Western world about the Pakistani fashion world? The Pakistani fashion industry only started a couple of decades ago. There’s a lot of potential: The craft is stunning, you would be overwhelmed over how beautiful it is. But the perception overseas is very bias, hardwired by the international press, which is why few know about it. Also, there isn’t enough fashion or textile exhibitions happening abroad. Because of travel restrictions, a lot of foreign buyers haven’t been to Pakistan to see what designers are creating and producing. That said, the fashion industry is doing really well within the country so they don’t see the need to go international.

events and branding campaigns,

Photos Courstesy of Sadia Siddiqui

COVID-19 is the ultimate challenge. It’s not the first obstacle

In the meantime, Sadia is keeping an

the creative director and CEO

eye out for the changes ahead in order

of Mustang Productions, Sadia

to adapt to the new normal. “Social

Siddiqui, has faced in her career

distancing is not going to end anytime

but is one of the biggest ones.

soon. They’re predicting a couple of

Sadia was born and raised in

years. We don’t know if people will still

Pakistan. She pursued higher

want to spend money on production.

education in business in England

When it comes to the necessities of life,

when she got her MBA (top five

fashion doesn’t come on the top end.

of her cohort). Since then, she

But it’s too early to say.”

has poured her experience in

/ JUNE 2020 114 MAY Reflecting The South-Asian Lifestyle

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Profile for Darpan Magazine

DARPAN MAY JUNE 2020 - NORA FATEHI  

Hello readers, we hope you and your families are in good health and doing well. COVID-19 has been a difficult experience for many but we are...

DARPAN MAY JUNE 2020 - NORA FATEHI  

Hello readers, we hope you and your families are in good health and doing well. COVID-19 has been a difficult experience for many but we are...

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