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DECEMBER 2019 Vol 3 Issue 3

AIBC Qld hosts Australia India Address 2019

New High Commissioner H.E. Mr Gitesh Sarma

PAGE 4 13th Asia Pacific Screen Awards

605 Robinson Road, Aspley 217 Beams Road Taigum ( Taigum Square )

PAGE 11 Guru Nanak Dev Ji's 550th Gurpurab

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Indian News Queensland | PUBLISHER'S NOTE FOR ENQUIRES Contact: Dr. Ram Mohan Phone: 1 300 859 066 EDITORS Harpreet Bhagrath Dr Ram Mohan Dr Venkat Pulla EDITORIAL SUPPORT, WEBSITE DESIGN & MANAGEMENT Cosmos Media Joyce Thomas PHOTOGRAPHERS Kartik Singh Redsun Srikanth SRK Photography DESIGNER Digishout Marcom Solutions Pvt Ltd Senthilkumar Umapathy PUBLISHING & DISTRIBUTION Star Promotions ADDRESS Indian News Queensland Unit 49, 391, WICKHAM TERRACE, Ground Floor, Spring Hill, Brisbane, QLD – 4000 Web: Facebook:

Dear Readers, Some key events took place in Brisbane in November, and that is a good thing for our newspaper. Gives us all the more work to do for the community. Soon after he assumed office last month in Canberra, the New High Commissioner Mr Anumula Gitesh Sarma got a warm welcome here in Brisbane also by the Indian community. H.E. Mr Sarma was also there at the AIBC's Annual Australia India Address, and the local business community had the chance to interact with him. Another major event last month was the Asia Pacific Screen Awards. Good to see an Indian bagging the most coveted Best Actor award. Full marks to Manoj Bajpayee for his performance indeed. Then, Sikh Guru Nanak Dev Ji's 550th birth anniversary saw not just the Sikh community but the other sections of society as well taking keen interest in the celebrations. So much so that the Queensland Police got in on the fun as well, and one could see them taking active part in the proceedings. One of our good writers, Rabindra Mukherji, has done a sound analysis of the Ayodhya verdict, and you might not want to miss that one. I, on behalf of INQ team, wish all of you the joys of the festive season and happiness throughout the coming year.

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Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

AIBC hosts Annual Australia India Address in Brisbane


ustralia India Business Council (AIBC), Queensland Chapter, held their interactive Annual Australia India Address, including a panel discussion, over formal dinner on 21 November at Hilton Brisbane. The event was well represented by the AIBC members and its stakeholders, including Trade and Investment Queensland, Queensland Government representatives, entrepreneurs, business fraternity, academicians and others. The event presented a fitting platform for networking opportunities and to explore, share and understand trade relationships between India and Australia. After the welcome address by AIBC Qld President Nik Senapati, the Master of Ceremonies Tony Denholder did the introductions and brief of the event proceedings. Australian and Indian national anthems were played, after which the address by guest speaker His Excellency Mr Gitesh Sarma,

High Commissioner of India to Australia, followed. Mr Glenn Butcher, Assistant Minister for Treasury, representing the Premier of Queensland, was the second guest speaker. After the main course was served to the participants, Mr Jim Varghese AM, National Chairman, AIBC, began the panel discussion with panelists Mr Maha Sinnathamby AM, Chairman and Founder, Springfield City Group and Mr Peter Varghese AO, Chancellor, UQ. Other dignitaries and persons of influence present at the annual address were India's Hon Consul in Brisbane, Mrs Archana Singh, FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan, Mr Ashutosh Misra, Dr Tanya Unni, Mr Nishant Kedia, Mr Rajesh Gupta, Mr Muthuraj Guruswamy, Mrs Sheba Nandkeolyar, Gayatri Alluri and Madhu Nair. The event was sponsored by Adani Australia and Central Queensland University.

Dr Tanya Unni (left) with His Excellency Mr Gitesh Sarma (middle), High Commissioner of India to Australia

(From L-R) Mr Peter Varghese AO, Mr Jim Varghese AM, Mr Ashutosh Misra, FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan

Business and community leaders

His Excellency Mr Gitesh Sarma (3rd right), High Commissioner Hon Consul in Brisbane, Mrs Archana Singh (4th left), with of India to Australia, with other dignitaries at the event other attendees at one of the dining tables

AIBC partners with FICCI for education-focussed delegation's visit


he first-ever completely education-focussed delegation from India visited Australia in the first week of November. It was Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry's (FICCI)

largest education internationally.


Australia India Business Council (AIBC) partners and works closely with FICCI to explore mutually beneficial opportunities for Australia and India.

Mr Narasimhan Viswanathan (left) and Dr Partha Mukherjee (2nd left)

Dr Partha Mukherjee (left) with other delegation members


Palani O Thevar picked as the Labor candidate for Maiwar, Qld


Mr Palani Thevar

alani O Thevar, the earstwhile FICQ president and a social worker with Queensland Health, has been chosen as the Labor candidate for Maiwar, Qld. Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced last month that Palani Thevar would join her Labor team to contest next year’s State Election in Maiwar. The Premier said, “Just as my

Government is one that listens to Queenslanders, I know Palani Thevar will be out there every day earning the trust of their local communities." "I am honored and grateful as a Labor Candidate for Maiwar and in joining the Labor team to fight for good jobs and great services. Thank you Queensland Labor and Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk MP for the great opportunity to work with people in Maiwar," Mr Thevar's Facebook post soon after his selection read. Mr Thevar is a dad to three children with his wife Devi and has a passion

for education and community development. As the former President of the Federation of Indian Communities of Queensland and Queensland Tamil Association, Palani has a proven track record of bringing communities together. Mr Thevar said his experience as a social worker prompted him to run for Parliament. “As a social worker, I saw firsthand how devastating the LNP’s cuts to health and community services were to Queenslanders.

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“I am running as Labor’s candidate to fight for crucial education, health and community services funding we deserve,” said Mr Thevar. Palani works in mental health care support and previously worked in the disability care sector, and as a Child Safety Support Officer, protecting children from abuse and neglect. “I have spent my life working with young people, adults and their families when they need it the most. Our community deserves a member of Parliament who can deliver real outcomes for Maiwar.



Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

13th Asia Pacific Screen Awards: Manoj Bajpayee bags Best Actor award


anoj Bajpayee won the Best Actor award at the Asia Pacific Screen Awards held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on November 21 in Brisbane for Bhonsle. The Asia Pacific Screen Awards honours cinematic excellence and celebrates local and international filmmakers. Bhonsle is Bajpayee's second Best Actor award at APSA after he bagged it for his performance in Aligarh in 2016. Directed by Devashish Makhija, the Hindi feature narrates the story of a police constable (Bajpayee), who tries to fight the struggles of migrants and their battles with the local politicians. The actor said while getting nominated for the honour in itself is an achievement, winning the award is “quite a privilege”. “But winning it second time, and being nominated third time is a huge feeling of accomplishment that I have. Winning it for Bhonsle is all the more important because it is a very special film for me. It’s a passion project. We have been trying to make this film for four-and-a-half years,” Bajpayee said in a statement.

Parasite won Best Film award South Korean black comedy Parasite won the Best Feature Film award. The Bong Joon-ho directed film has won accolades on the Korean film circuit and film festivals around the world, including the Palme d’Or at Cannes, and has its sights set on the Oscars. Writer-director Rodd Rathjen’s Buoyancy won Best Youth Feature Film Produced by Causeway Films’ Sam Jennings and Kristina Ceyton with Rita Walsh, Buoyancy details the story of a 14-year old Cambodian boy (Sarm Heng) who heads to Thailand search of a better life, only to find himself trafficked and enslaved on a fishing trawler. Ridham Janve won Young Cinema Award for The Gold-Laden Sheep and the Sacred Mountain "I think this award should inspire all the other independent filmmakers to dream big and really work hard to make those dreams come true," Janve said. Photos: APSA Stars of the 13th Asia Pacific Screen Awards at the awards ceremony (Courtesy APSA)

Writer-director Rodd Rathjen’s Buoya-ncy won Best Youth Feature Film

Max Eigenmann (right) won Best Performance by an Actress for Verdict (Courtesy APSA)

Reena Augustine, Founder, Red Carpet Functions, on the red carpet

The Lord Mayor of Brisbane, Mr Adrian Shrinner, speaking at the award ceremony (Courtesy APSA)

Ridham Janve (right) wins Young Cinema Award for The Gold-Laden Sheep and the Sacred Mountain

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Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

Indian community welcomes new High Commissioner of India


he Federation of Indian Communities of Queensland (FICQ) hosted an Indian community leaders' gathering on November 21 to welcome His Excellency Mr Anumula Gitesh Sarma, High Commissioner of India to Australia, who has assumed office since November 13. On his visit to Brisbane, FICQ and Indian community leaders congratulated him on the appointment. His Excellency also delivered the keynote speech at

Australia India Business Council, Queensland's Annual Australia India address. He highlighted that India and Australia are strongly focused on increasing the intensity of bilateral engagement. Mr Sarma has previously served as the Indian envoy to Uzbekistan, Fiji and Vanuatu and replaced Mr AM Gondane as the High Commissioner to Australia. He had been serving as the Secretary (West) in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) of India before his newest appointment.

The new High Commissioner of India, HE Mr Gitesh Sarma, with FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan, India's Hon Consul in Brisbane, Mrs Archana Singh and the various Indian communities' leaders

New High Commissioner with Mr Ram Mohan (right) & Mrs Archana Singh (left)

FICQ workshop on cyber bullying for kids organised in Annerley

The new High Commissioner of India, HE Mr Gitesh Sarma (middle), with India's Hon Consul in Brisbane, Mrs Archana Singh (left) and Mr Umesh Chandra (right)


ederation of Indian Communities of Queensland (FICQ) organised a free workshop for kids aged 7-14 on cyber bullying on 30 November in multicultural Annerley. Using a conversational mode, the work areas explored during the workshop included 1) relationship between risk-taking and bullying during adolescence, 2) societal and cultural considerations, 3) if any cyber bullying is happening in their lives and 4) what help seeking behaviors kids display? The workshop was based on 'Australian Student Wellbeing Framework', which includes five interconnected elements of Leadership, Inclusion, Student Voice, Partnerships, and Support. Children wrote essays and took part in various activities. They were given certificates for participation and prizes for the writing and active participation in the discussion groups. The workshop was facilitated by the young men who have graduated recently. Lunch was served to both students and parents.

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Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

Adani's Moranbah solar farm now powering 23K Qld homes and businesses


espite the Indian mining giant's decision to refrain from investing $1 billion or more in renewable energy in Australia, Adani Australia’s solar farm near Moranbah, which is its first renewable energy project in Australia, is operational now and is currently powering more than 23,000 Queensland homes and businesses. The company, one of the biggest developers of renewable energy in India, formally launched its first Australian solar project, Rugby Run, which is a 65-megawatt solar farm, on October 31, almost a year behind schedule. Rugby Run Solar Farm is located near the town of Moranbah in regional Queensland. The site is more than 600 hectares in size. In phase one, Rugby Run Solar Farm will supply 65-megawatt of renewable power and has the capacity to expand up to 170-megawatt. More than 247,000 solar panels have been installed at the site, and the farm will generate 185,000MWh of power each year or the equivalent to power about 23,000 homes each year (from phase one). “We are delighted to officially open the Adani Rugby Run solar farm today, adding an Australian arm to our already significant international renewables portfolio,” Adani CEO Lucas Dow, while opening the farm, said. “People are often surprised when we say we’re in the renewables business, but the reality is that we

recognize the world needs a reliable and affordable energy mix of both coal and renewables in order to meet current and future global energy demand. “In India we already have 2,385MW of renewable energy being produced every year, which is enough to power the entire State of South Australia. We will continue to walk the talk on the importance of a reliable energy mix and our Australian Rugby Run solar farm now in successful operation is evidence of that,” he said. The solar farm has been built for Queensland’s conditions, with the panels programmed to rotate to track the sun most efficiently and also to move to the most effective angles to withstand inclement wind and weather. Why Adani's renewable energy projects are good for Queenslanders Australia is going through a “renewables boom”, with 14.8 gigawatts of new generation under construction or financially committed, representing about A$24.5bn in investment, according to the Clean Energy Council. Australia’s Energy Market Operator (AEMO) says the country is home to some of the highest levels of wind and solar generation in the world, following a surge in investment. In the light of all this, it is pertinent that solar projects like the one Adani Australia has launched in Queensland are supported.

Adani had self-financed this $100 million Rugby Run project, and more than 175 people were employed during peak construction periods. Local Queensland contractors from Clermont, Chinchilla, Bowen and Townsville were used for construction, providing employment to the local Queenslanders. “More than 175 people were employed during peak construction, with local Queensland contractors from Clermont, Chinchilla, Bowen and Townsville also engaged, ensuring the benefits were focused in regional Queensland,” Mr Dow said. “We made sure we engaged Queensland suppliers wherever possible for Rugby Run, with 89% of our contract services for the project going to Queensland businesses - 78% of supplier contracts went to regional Queensland businesses alone.” he said.

Besides all these adventure spots, the participants were taken on the 4WD tours of the island. The best part for most of the participants was being able to enjoy the scrumptious creations of chef Ben Willan and having Mathew Hayden as their host for the two days of fun and adventure. Host Mathew Hayden is particularly appreciative of the organisers Mahindra Adventure Club, as he acknowledges, "Mahindra is a very natural fit for me. Firstly it is a product that is owned, operated and managed out of India. So there’s that great connection to that link

between Australia and India. And then you look at my background, the agribusiness is a huge focus for Mahindra and this (he points to the Hayden family farm) has been my life and will always be a huge part of my life.” So the next time you hear of a similar adventure planned by the same people, just jump on the chance as the seats are always limited and tend to sell fast.

Moranbah solar farm • 1.3 million galvanised zip ties to be used in the stringing of electrical cables • More than 247,000 solar panels installed • 175 jobs at peak construction • 18km of fence line installed • 7.2km of road built to access site • 6,500 holes pre-drilled • The solar panels rotate to track the sun and maximize efficiency • The solar panels are programmed to rest at an angle that withstands inclement wind and weather conditions

More than 175 Queenslanders were employed for Adani's Rugby Run Solar Farm near Moranbah during peak construction periods (Courtesy Adani Australia)

• 65MW solar farm

Adani's Queensland headquarters in Townsville

Adani's Rugby Run Solar Farm near Moranbah, Queensland (Courtesy Adani Australia)

Mahindra brings adventure and fun on the Fraser Island


ormer Australian cricketer Mathew Hayden greeted and guided them, and executive chef Ben Willan cooked for them. And all this while, they had tons of fun, including beach cricket, swimming in Lake Mckenzie and a tour of the Fraser Island. This all happened on Mahindra Adventure Club's firstever event in Australia on Fraser Island on November 8-9. Starting at the Manta ray Barge loading point on the mainland, the party headed for the Taleebra Bay, Happy Valley, Lake Mckenzie and the ship wreck SS Maheno.

Host Mathew Hayden is particularly appreciative of the organisers Mahindra Adventure Club

Mahindra Pickup for 4WD tours of the island

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Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

Gala dinner marks Radio 4EB's 40th anniversary


adio 4EB organised a gala dinner on the occasion of its 40th anniversary at one of Queensland's most iconic venues, the Brisbane City Hall, on 30 November. The evening was full of multicultural performances and it was a sold-out event. The audience was diverse, comprising of guests from different communities as well as the distinguished dignitaries and political figures, including Minister for Multicultural Affairs of Queensland, Hon. Stirling Hinchliffe. The event was organised in conjunction with the National Ethnic and Multicultural Broadcasters Council (NEMBC) 2019 National Awards. The gala dinner included a 3-course dinner, and musical and dance performances. Queensland’s only 24-hour, multi-language radio station, Radio 4EB has been continuously broadcasting ever since its inception on 1 Dec, 1979. The station is truly multicultural platform, where unity in diversity flourishes. President of the station, Nick Dmyterko, recounted the history of the radio station and thanked the various broadcasting groups and staff to have made the 4-decade run of the station possible. He also thanked the Station Manager Jo Pratt, board of directors, office staff, broadcasting groups and hundreds of volunteers.

Fundraiser organised for BSK organises bushfire relief work Bala Utsav in Acacia Ridge A rt of Living Foundation, a not-forprofit organisation, organised a fundraising event, "Australia Meditates for Bushfire Relief", on 30 November at 18 locations across Australia simultaneously. The event in Brisbane was organised at Stellar College, Fortitude Valley. This fundraiser was to support the Australian Red Cross in their efforts to assist the bushfire relief work. The theme of the program was outlined with an insightful and very inspiring presentation, "Is increasing frequency of bushfires due to climate change? Wwhat can we do?", by Dr Anthony Halog, lecturer in the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Queensland. Special guest, Dr Ram Mohan, President FICQ, shared his views on the climate change and expressed his concerns on

the footprints we may leave for coming generations. The positive effects of meditation on human beings and the environment were explained to the group. The group was led through micro yoga regime followed by a deep meditation. The meditation was in the divine voice of the founder of Art of Living Foundation, Sri Sri Ravishankar. The gathering then offered prayers for the bushfire relief and for the rain. Message from Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner was also read out. Special mention was made about the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services, who are working tirelessly to keep the communities and environment safe. The donors donated generously at the venue. For those who missed the event and still wish to donate, here's the link: fundraise.redcross.

FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan shared his views on the climate change

Donors donated generously at the venue

Students dressed in drama costumes posing together


ala Samskar Kendra (BSK) Queensland organised its annual event Bala Utsav at the  Acacia Ridge State High School, Acacia Ridge,  on  30 November. At the annual event, the students of  BSK  showcased the knowledge they gained over the past year to the community through drama and dance. This year students staged a drama based on the character of  Keikeyi  from the great Hindu epic  Ramayana  and on Bhasmasura. In addition to this main performance, there were other

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cultural dances, songs and vedic chanting. Bala Samskar Kendra (BSK) is the education wing of Vishva Hindu Parishad of Australia, Queensland Chapter, that provides the younger generation the opportunity to learn and inculcate the rich values of Hindu Dharma. This is achieved through education and teachings from ancient Hindu scriptures. BSK  aspires to increase the self-confidence in children, develop leadership qualities while making them appreciate their cultural heritage and tradition.  DECEMBER 2019


Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

TAQ hosts Naana Neeya reality talk show


amil Association of Queensland (TAQ) conducted their reality talk show event at Waterloo Leisure Hall, Wynnum, on November 10. The event started with melodious and soft-flowing light music by Brisbane youth band, featuring singers Sharujan Mahendraraj and Amrutha Murali, violin by Aswin Narayanan and Praveen Paila, keys by Lavanya Sukumar, Luxshiyaa Sukumar, Nisha Catherine and percussions by Koagul Ravirajah and Jesinthan Ketheeswaran. This light music was followed by grand welcome to Mr Gopinath, the popular motivational speaker and lighting of the lamp by the chief guests. Mr Peter Cumming,

Councillor of Wynnum Ward, delivered the VIP speech of the evening, followed by TAQ’s website launch. Then the interesting and funny debate show kept the audience glued to their seats for more than three hours. The talk show event ended with a selfie session and a sumptuous sitdown dinner with Mr Gopinath. During the talk session between the participants and Mr Gopinath, many philosophical as well as practical issues were discussed, including life events, life after migration for parents and children, among others. The motivational speaker was unstoppable with his flow of thoughts and the fun way he uses to express his ideas.

Mr Gopinath (left), Mr Peter Cumming (middle), Councillor of Wynnum Ward, and Mr Palani Thevar (right)

Mr Gopinath on stage during his motivational talk

QTA hosts Karthika Vanabhojanalu and Christmas Lunch 2019


ueensland Telugu Association (QTA) oragnised Karthika Va n a b h o j a n a l u (potluck party in garden) and Christmas Lunch 2019 on November 10 at Carindale Recreation Reserve, Carindale. The party for the adults as well as kids started as early as 10 am on this fun-filled Sunday, with perfect weather in the picture-perfect park with lots of trees and greenery. Also, Vanabhojanalu brought a Telugu festive look to the park.

Mouth-watering Telugu bhojanam dishes were the highlight of the event, with everyone bringing their favourite home-cooked dish as a potluck to share with Telugus living in Brisbane and surrounding cities. The attendees participated in games such as lemon and spoon race, tug of war, tambola and queen’s wish fulfillment, a surprising game organised by Usha Garu. Mr. Sudershan Kanthakadi played Santa for the day, and kids were overwhelmed to see him and interact with him, especially during the cake-

QTA Karthika Vanabhojanalu and Christmas lunch 2019

cutting as well as when he presented Christmas gifts to them all on behalf of QTA. Before wrapping up for the day, QTA president, Mrs. Uma Guduru, and the management committee members thanked the guests and attendees. QTA's main objective is to "maintain and promote Telugu culture, literature and tradition among Teluguspeaking people in Queensland". You can contact QTA through email Find them on Facebook https://www.facebook. com/QueenslandTelugu

QTA management committee members with Santa

The tug of war game in full swing

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Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

ICQ hosts its first Australian citizenship ceremony


o celebrate the 70th anniversary of Australian Citizenship, Islamic Council of Queensland, with support from Department of Home Affairs, hosted its first citizenship ceremony at Islamic College of Brisbane in Karawatha on November 9. After the ceremony, the cake welcoming the Muslim people as the new citizens of Australia was cut and relished by the dignitaries present as well as the new citizens who got their citizenship on the day. The dignitaries and local VIPs present at the ceremony were Honourable Cameron Dick MP, Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning, Dr Jim Chalmers MP, Member for Rankin and Shadow Treasurer of Australia, Aboriginal Elder Aunty Betty McGrady, FICQ President Dr Ram Moahn, Louise Moeller, Carl Wu, Janeth Deen, Nematollahi Ghadeer Ali Shah, Lewis Lee OAM, Prakruthi Mysore Gururaj, FSCAQ President Surendra Prasad, among others.

Dr Jim Chalmers MP, Member for Rankin and Shadow Treasurer of Australia, delivering his speech

Multicultural Queensland Social Network team with Louise Moeller, Carl Wu, Janeth Deen, Surendra Prasad, Dr Ram Mohan and Lewis Lee OAM

One of the Muslim families who became Australian citizens on the day

Janeth Deen cutting the cake to mark the first citizenship ceremony by Islamic Council of Queensland

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Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

Sikh Neighborhood Open Day marks Guru Nanak Dev Ji's 550th Gurpurab


he Sikh Neighbourhood Open Day celebrating Guru Nanak Dev Ji's (founder of the Sikh religion) 550th Gurpurab (birthday) was held on November 14 at the Brisbane Sikh Gurdwara at Logan Road, Eight Miles Plains. Funded by Lord Mayor's Community Fund and Mcgregor Ward, the celebrations took place with an open invitation to the broader Australian community, organisations, professionals, interfaith communities and local neighbourhood businesses and residents. The Sikh Neighborhood event was organised as Sikhs across the world held celebrations. Established in 1987, the Brisbane Sikh Gurdwara is the original place of worship for the Sikh community in South East Queensland. In attendance were federal MP Graham Perrett and Brisbane Local Councillor Steven Huang (MacGregor ward). The event was attended by Queensland Police, Australian Federal Police, Eight Mile Plains State School, Queensland Human Rights Commission, FICQ, Islamic Society, Ahmadiya Muslim community, Greens Mayor candidate Cath Angus, Centrelink, Hindu Society and the Jewish community. Giani Kuldeep Singh presented a seminar on Guru Nanak Dev Ji's life, Sikh teachings and Sikh legacy. Social worker Jatinder Kaur said that this was an important event to raise awareness about who the Sikhs are and create interfaith dialogue and understanding. On the occasion of Guru Nanak Dev Ji's 550th Gurpurab, the Sikh Bullying resource book for Sikh children about bullying and being a Sikh in Australia was also launched. It was funded under the

Lord Mayor community fund and will be distributed to local libraries and schools. Celebrations at Parliament House The Parliament House also hosted celebrations on the occasion of Guru Nanak Dev Ji’s 550th Gurpurab. Minister for local government, Racing and Multicultural affairs, the Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe was present to address the sangat (people of Sikh faith gathered at a place). When the ardas (prayer to the almighty) was said, the fellow Queenslanders struggling through the tough times were also remembered along with prayers for sarbat da bhala (the betterment of the whole wide World).

(From L-R) Kuldeep Singh, Steven W. Huang, federal MP Graham Perrett, Dr Ram Mohan, Jatinder Kaur, Hira Fatima at the launch of the Sikh Bullying resource book

Qld Police attended special langar (community kitchen) serving free traditional vegetarian meals to the masses

Sikh celebrations at King George Square

Sikh celebrations at Qld parliament

Pinky Singh (2nd right) and Dr Ram Mohan (right) at the Sikh celebrations at King George Square

Langar (free food for devotees) served at the event

Qld Police celebrate with the Sikhs


fficers from the Brisbane region celebrated the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, alongside hundreds from across the local Sikh community. Qld police not only had the chance to visit the Brisbane Sikh gurudwara (temple) for its annual Neighbourhood Open Day, but also the opportunity to attend special langars (community kitchens) serving free traditional vegetarian meals to the masses in Brisbane’s North Side and King George Square. During the annual open day, officers were treated to a series

of presentations, reflections and insights by elders from across the faith, as well as the opportunity to engage with leaders from various organisations in celebrating the Sikh faith. Local Sikh leader Jatinder Kaur said they want to use the historic anniversary as an opportunity to show others in the community what their religion is all about.

Cross Cultural Liaison Unit said that these community events showcase the wonderful multicultural tapestry that is the South Brisbane District. “We are fortunate enough to have a fantastic relationship with our local Sikh community and we appreciate being invited to celebrate this auspicious occasion,” Sergeant Bellos said.

Ricky Lashand, Jim Bellos and Qld Human Rights Commission staff

“Our beliefs are very similar to that of this great country, equality, justice, religious freedom and community service are just some of the core values that represent our culture,” Jatinder Kaur said. Sergeant Jim Bellos from the Qld Police attended special langar (community kitchen) serving free traditional vegetarian meals to the masses

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Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

KSQ organises Kannada Rajyotsava and Deepavali celebration


annada Sangha Queensland (KSQ) organised Kannada Rajyotsava and Deepavali celebrations on 16 November at Coorparoo Secondary College, Coorparoo. The event started early in the evening at 4:30pm, and after the cultural programs and dance performances, dinner was served to the audiences. Among the dignitaries who attended the event were Lord Mayor of Brisbane Adrian Schrinner, Cr Angela Owen, Councillor for Calamvale Ward, FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan, Mrs Usha Chandra, Mr Umesh Chandra, Mr Shyam Das.

Lord Mayor Adrian Shrinner (right) with FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan

Dignitaries on stage, striking a nice pose together

One of the dance groups during their performance



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Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

Immigration Minister hosts reception for Indian community


he Hon. David Coleman MP, Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs, hosted an evening reception with key multicultural community leaders and stakeholders on November 5 at Christie Conference Centre, Brisbane . The minister talked about the contribution migrants make to the social and economic advancement in the state and appreciated the fact that every third business in Australia is owned by migrants. Minister also talked this year's changes that have been made to religious workers visa

and that a new visa for culturally diverse aged care workers have been created. He also informed the Indian community that parents visa have been made easy and they can stay up to 10 years. FICQ gets the minister's invite Later during the month, FICQ got the invite from the minister for a meeting, during which the minister enquired about the role of FICQ and the issues faced by the Indian students and diaspora in Queensland. Various Indian communities' leaders were present at the meeting, along with the FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan.

Hon. David Coleman MP (middle) with Surendra Prasad (left), Pinky Singh (2nd right), president of the Punjabi Welfare Association Australia, and Dr Ram Mohan (right)

Hon. David Coleman MP (left) with FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan at the meeting

Hon. David Coleman MP addressing the Indian community during the reception

Thrissur Geddies: Bringing Keralites' homeland into Brisbane


hrissur, situated in the central part of Kerala state in India, came alive within Brisbane at Sherwood Uniting Church Hall on October 26, when more than 80 families belonging to this region got together in Brisbane. The Thrissur Geddies was a firstof-its-kind, entertaining evening with dances, songs, drama, mimicry and orchestra, all aimed at bringing together Thrissur expats living in Queensland. Adding to its fervour was the delicious Kerala food, which was served at the end of the event. The get-together was a grand success with around 80 families attending and introducing themselves on the stage. The program was inaugurated with lighting of lamp by the main organising members. The get-together was named Thrissur Geddies (Geddies is a Thrissur colloquial term for friends), and true to its name, it brought together friends who recreated Thrissur memories.

There was a musical video presentation showcasing the highlights of Thrissur that made the audience nostalgic and proud at the same time. It reminded everyone of the very old and rich heritage that makes Thrissur the cultural capital of Kerala. The visuals, from old sacred temples, churches and mosques to the abundant natural beauty, bombarded the participants with memories of their beautiful land. The organising members have already started planning for the event for next year. Many more families hailing from Thrissur from within Queensland would be added soon to the friendship group. Those interested in being a part of this group can contact Sojan Neelankavil (0478037825), Jimmy Arikkatt (0433460971), Joby Akkara (0435488357), Jiju Padinjakara (0467071553). By Ajeesh Kumar

Program being inaugurated with lighting of lamp by the main organising members

Around 80 families hailing from Thrissur attended the get-together

War memorial for Australians of Indian heritage rededicated


n memory of Australians of Indian heritage who made the supreme sacrifice in the defence of Australia, the war memorial for them was rededicated on 30 November. After Mr Surendra Prasad, Chair, Australians of Indian Heritage War Memorial Committee, did the acknowledgements, Ms Petra Milaudi, Honorary Chaplain, Sunnybank RSL Sub-Branch, rededicated the war memorial. Durig the ceremony, prayers of remembrance were said, wreaths were laid and the Australian national anthem played.

Community members gathered at the war memorial

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Community members laid wreaths on the war memorial in memory of Australians of Indian heritage DECEMBER 2019


Indian News Queensland | MUSIC & DANCE

Advaita: Fusion of cuisine and music delights audience


s part of Confluence Festival of India, Gandhi Salt March Limited organised the event Advaita, a fusion of cuisine and music, on November 7 at Sunnybank Performing Arts and Cultural Centre, Sunnybank, with Delhi-based band Advaita visiting Brisbane for the same. It was a delightful evening, and the dinner was served to the audience as part of the event. Among the attendees were India's Hon Consul in Brisbane, Mrs Archana Singh, Mr Jim Varghese AM, Mr Umesh Chandra and Mrs Usha Chandra, Dr Ram Mohan, Mr Ashutosh Misra, Mrs Sudha Manian, Mrs Prakruthi Mysore Gururaj, Mr Paviter Noori, Mr Shyam Das, among others.

Courtesy - Umesha Chandra Facebook (2)

Delhi-based band Advaita performing on stage

Community members with Advaita band

Hon Consul in Brisbane, Mrs Archana Singh, Mr Jim Varghese AM, Mr Umesh Chadra and Mrs Usha Chadra, Dr Ram Mohan, Mr Ashutosh Misra, Mrs Sudha Manian, Mrs Prakruthi Mysore Gururaj, Mr Shyam Das, among other

Chinmaya Mission Brisbane observes Diwali celebrations


eepavali was celebrated at the various Chinmaya Mission centres in Brisbane. In the Balavihar classes, the children learnt about the significance of Deepavali through stories, activities and games. As part of the activities, children lit one lamp and used it to light more lamps. They understood and appreciated how the first lamp did not lose any of its brilliance by sharing its light with the other lamps. They learnt the valuable lesson that we too must light the lamp of knowledge, love, wealth and good values in ourselves and also share it with the world. They also played a game of 10-pin bowling wherein the children had to use the balls labelled with good values to knock down the bowling pins which were labelled with bad values. Finally they made lamps and decorated them.

Chinmaya Mission Brisbane runs weekly classes for children, youth and adults in three locations – Holland Park, Heathwood and Fitzgibbon. Chinmaya Mission has specifically designed curriculum for all age groups. Classes focus on developing positive values of love, honesty, faith, courage, sharing, respect and teamwork and are based on the ancient texts (Bhagavad Geeta, Upanishads) and epics (Ramayana, Mahabharata). Classes also include chanting and meditation. The entire family benefits together at the Sunday family program. Weekly classes are held every Sunday during the school term from 10 am to 11:45 am at Holland Park State High School, Bapaume Rd, Holland Park, for children, teenagers and adults. They also have online Upanishad classes on Wednesday evening with Swami Shrikaranandaji.

Kids light lamps during Chinmaya Mission celebrations in Heathwood

Chinmaya Mission centre in Northside Balavihar classes for children aged 4 to 12 years are also held every Sunday at: • Aashirwad, 95 Laurel Street, Heathwood 4110, from 10 am to 11:30 am; and • Fitzgibbon Community Centre, 545 Roghan Rd, Fitzgibbon 4018, from 4 pm to 5.30 pm

Kids with their parents at Chinmaya Mission centre in Northside

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Indian News Queensland | MUSIC & DANCE

Musical dance drama Shakthi spellbinds spectators


alitha Kalalaya School of Bharatanatyam organised the cultural dance show 'Shakti -- the Primordial Cosmic Energy' on November 9 at Sunpac, Sunnybank. The musical dance drama by the students of Lalitha Kalalaya Bharatanatyam portrayed the confluence of tri-Shakthi energy – Goddess Lakshmi bestowing prosperity, Goddess Saraswathi knowledge and Goddess Parvathi power. Dancers from various age groups demonstrated brilliant dancing skills, in the process exhibiting the excellence of Bharatanatyam, the classical dance form from Tamil Nadu. It was indeed a rare opportunity for Australians and multicultural communities to experience the cultural show in Brisbane. Dance and music appeal

to everyone beyond boundaries and regardless of cultural background, and the guests were spellbound with the various performances. The spectacular theatrical performances were witnessed by many dignitaries and local VIPs, including Aunt Peggy Tidyman, Aboriginal Elder who delivered a heartfelt speech, Mrs. Archana Singh, Honorary Council of India in Queensland, Senator Paul Scarr of Liberal Party of Australia, Cr Jonathan Sri of Gabba Ward, Cr Steven Huang of Macgregor Ward, Cr Paul Bishop and Cr Tracey Huges of Redland City Council, Mr Palani Thevar, Mrs Uma Guduru, president of Queensland Telugu Association, Mr. Surendra Prasad OAM, president of Fiji Senior Citizens Association, Mr Sri Jeyanthira Kumar, president of Tamil Association of Queensland,

Mr Lewis Lee OAM, Mr Umesh Chandra and Mrs Usha Chandra, Dr Ram Mohan, president of FICQ, Mr Lee Gerchow, principal of Macgregor State School, Mr Anthony Shorten, Mr John Prescott, Mr Trent Mc Tiernan, Mr Elijah Buol OAM, Mrs Prakruthi Mysore Gururaj, Dr Sonu Hikerwal, Mr Carl Wu, Mr Edward Lin and Mrs Susan Yang. The event was organised with the support of Lord Mayor’s Community Fund and Cr. Steven Huang, Macgregor Ward. The certificates for all the performers were provided by Cr. Angela Owen, Calamvale. "We would like to express our special thanks to Cr. Angela Owen for having provided us with the certificates to all the performers," said Padmalakshmi Sriram, one of the organisers of the event.

Mrs Archana Singh, Hon Consul of India (middle), flanked by other dignitaries

Palani O Thevar (middle) with Elijah Buol (left), Trent McTiernan (2nd left), Lewis Lee (2nd right) and Umesh Chandra (right)

One of the classical dance groups posing off-stage Classical Indian dancers enacting Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati on stage

Padmalakshmi Sriram, Shivani Sriram, TAQ team along with the dignitaries on stage

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Indian News Queensland | FASHION

Red Carpet Gala: Fashion show fosters multicultural spirit in Queensland


ostering the multicultural spirit in Queensland, Red Carpet Function's (RCF) Multicultural Fashion Show held on October 26 at Saint John's Cathedral in Brisbane was a spectacular night of fashion and performances from different countries. This year's theme was “Gala and Floral", with 50 models and 11 designers from various cultural backgrounds taking part. Besides fashion, the show also supported a mix of performances, from Chinese traditional dance to string instrument performance to Bollywood dance items. The highlight of the show was the fashion awards presented to the talented artists on the night. Besides celebrating multiculturalism in Australia, the event provided the perfect opportunity to the participants and attendees to network with other multicultural leaders, business people, media and performers. All about promoting multiculturalism and diversity, this yearly massive fashion show in Brisbane provides the platform to the talented models, fashion designers, entertainers, backstage performers and event management teams to exhibit their work and talents to the mainstream society. MC for the event were Prakruti Mysore Gururaj, who is also the multicultural ambassador of Red Carpet Functions, and Surendra Prasad, president of FSCAQ. Since 2015, RCF has been providing a unique platform to independent designers, models, performers and artists belonging to various cultures to showcase their work and talent to the public. That way, RCF celebrates the diversity of Brisbane’s communities and recognises that fashion is a common denominator among all cultures. It also focus on inclusivity, as the founder Reena Augustine believes that everyone deserves a chance to walk on a fashion runway, regardless of their experience, age, gender and cultural background. Photos: Aras Shots

(L-R) Alex Ieong, Bob Pillay, Prav Pillay, Reena Augustine , Prakruthi Mysore Gururaj, Stan Potums, Walter Choo

Amy and Manbir representing India

Janani Ganapati

Mr Anthony Shorten acting as Master of the Ceremony for the event

Performance of the Year award being presented

Dance Galatta shines at FICQ Diwali


risbane-based dance school Dance Galatta added the dance component to the grand FICQ Diwali celebrations, which also featured songs, ethnic fashion shows and Indian food counters, at King George Square on October 25. The huge crowd at the event enjoyed two captivating dance performances by the school's students. The first performance at 4.30pm was the dandia, the traditional folk dance that depicts the fight between the Goddess Durga and demon king Mahishasura. The dance was

well-performed by the talented kids in traditional attire. The next performance at 8pm was by the Dance Galatta ladies. They performed a variety of dances showcasing the rich diverse culture spread across the Indian states. In between these two group dance performances, there was also a sensuous solo dance. Dance Galatta is a Brisbane-based dance school that aims at providing opportunities to the local Indian talent to develop and showcase their skills in music and dance.

Left to right (back) Nishanth, Jerusha, Reva and Durai_ left to right (front) Ilnilla, Tanvi, Jashvika, Pavashna, Reva, Sara, Saathvik, Adwaith

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Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

Indonesia Multicultural Day draws cultures closer


ustralian Indonesian Culture and Welfare Association Inc (AICWAI) organised the Indonesia Multicultural Day on November 17 at Moreton Bay Trailer Boat Club, Manly. The event was protocolary opened with two national anthems, Advance Australia Fair and Indonesia Raya, followed with opening prayer by Rev. Steve Evans, President of Universal Peace Federation. Speeches were delivered by dignitaries Mrs Joan Pease MP, representing the Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe MP, Minister for Multicultural Affairs; Deputy Chief of Mission Mr M I Derry Aman, the Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia, Canberra; Senator Paul Scarr MP; VIPs Cr Peter Cumming, Surendra Prasad OAM and Bob Singh-Pillay. The award certificates were presented together by the chief guests of the day: Mrs Joan Pease MP and Mr M I Derry Aman. The host, Mrs Vera Pottinger, President of AICWAI, emphasised the important moment of the day was to recognise the excellent support from multicultural leaders, including Surendra Prasad OAM (FSCAQ), Lewis Lee OAM (SCCMC), Dr Noel Kanagaraj, Peter Low OAM, Carl Wu (Multicultural Queensland Social Network), Bob and Prav SinghPillay (Cornerstone Law Offices), Cr Peter Cumming (Wynnum Manly ward) and Rev Steve and Susi Evans (Universal Peace Federation).

Furthermore, Mrs Pottinger also acknowledged the continuing support from Indonesian team members and organisations, including Hartiti Willis, Yanuar Wismayanti, Indar Dahlan Poynton, Indonesian Students Association of Queensland, Indonesian Students Association of QUT, Indonesian Students Association of Griffith University and also Australian Indonesian Youth Exchange Program (AIYEP). The Master of Ceremonies of the day, Lewis Lee OAM and Larasati worked marvellously together on the stage. The event included various Indonesian singing and dancing performances by AIYEP, Seharum Nusantara Gold Coast and Brisbane North Chinese Association Inc. The day was heart-warming and engaging, and especially at the end the dancers were asking VIPs and audiences to dance together. It was truly multicultural, connecting people through performances. The Indonesia Multicultural Day was supported by the Lord Mayor Community Fund, Cr Peter Cumming, Wynnum Manly Ward, and sponsored by AICWAI’s official partner, Cornerstone Law Offices. Raffles was sponsored by Robam Kitchen Appliances and Wynnum Manly League Club. The event was concluded with a session of photo together in the front of the Manly waterfront. It was indeed a beautiful day. Photos: Steven Jonathan

The host of the event and president of AICWAI, Mrs Vera Pottinger (2nd left), with others

Mr Lewis Lee OAM acting as Master of Ceremonies of the day

Deputy Chief of Mission Mr M I Derry Aman, the Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia, Canberra

A group of cultural performers posing for the camera

Mrs Joan Pease MP addressing the gathering

One happy Indonesian family on the occasion

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Indian News Queensland | NEWS FROM INDIA

Ayodhya verdict: A win-win for all as justice prevails The entire 2.77 acre disputed land handed over to a trust for the construction of the Ram temple; the Sunni Central Waqf Board gets five acres of the acquired land near the site or in a suitable prominent place in Ayodhya By Rabindra Mukherji


inally, the much awaited Ayodhya verdict arrived last month with the Supreme Court of India bringing the curtains down on a case that was based on a dispute that dates back to 1885. However, the dust may not settle as yet till the temple is built, and the minority community begins to feel that it has not been wronged in any way following the verdict. But for now at least the speculations have dried up and there is little scope for any further politics on the issue. What does the verdict say? The Indian apex court, in a voluminous 1,045-page unanimous verdict by a five-judge constitution bench comprising now Former Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, new Chief Justice of India S.A. Bobde, Justices D.Y. Chandrachud, Ashok Bhusan and S.A. Nazeer, on November 9, gave the ruling that the entire 2.77 acre disputed land in Ayodhya be handed over to a trust to be constituted for the construction of the Ram temple. The top court also awarded the Sunni Central Waqf Board five acres of the acquired land near the site or in a 'suitable prominent place in Ayodhya'. In doing so the Supreme Court of India overturned the 2010 verdict of the three-judge bench of the Allahabad High Court, which had trifurcated the land among the Nirmohi Akhara, Ram Lalla Virajman and the Sunni Central Waqf Board. What do the critics say? Naturally, any verdict on this dispute would have kept the critics busy. They say that the verdict of the Supreme Court has been based on "faith instead of law and reason". They have gone so far as to remark that the judgment of the top court has "sided with majoritarianism". These observations were along the lines anticipated, given the fact that India is a Hindu majority state and any verdict that seems to favour the Hindus would be viewed as an act of majoritarianism. However, both these observations are erroneous and based on prejudice and wrong premises. Court’s verdict based on principle of equality While a policy decision and sometimes even the enactment of a law may have been compelled by some pressure imposed from outside the corridors of power, the Supreme Court rulings are based on hard evidence most of the times,

Members of Muslim and Tamil ethnic groups stage a demonstration against Supreme Court's Ayodhya verdict, in Chennai on Nov 21, 2019 (Photo IANS)

After the verdict, first set of Shilas reached Ayodhya for the construction of Ram temple (IANS)

so the issue of majority versus minority or majoritarianism does not arise. Such petty games at the cost of nation’s unity and integrity are for the politicians to play, and the Judiciary does not pay heed to these games. The apex court in India has taken recourse to a higher principle, that of equality before the law. Under the circumstances and based on evidence, justice seems to have been done with one community getting the 'site' and the other a five-acre plot. Here justice has been done by following neither the lines of majority and minority argument nor that of faith, it is just on the basis of what the top court clearly believes to be the evidence of 'actual worship down the centuries'. To be more precise, the judges were of the view that while both parties Ram Lalla Virajman and the Sunni Central Waqf Board had competing rights over the disputed site, lawyers representing the Hindus were able to provide better evidence of continuous worship compared to the lawyers representing the Muslim interests. To back their argument, the judges made reference to travelogues written by William Finch, who had visited India between 1607 and 1611 A.D., and Father Joseph Tieffenthaler, who visited the country between 1766 and 1771 A.D. These travelogues have described the site as the birthplace of Lord Ram and also stated that

actual worship was conducted there. ASI report brings further evidence The court’s judgment also referred to an Archeological Survey of India (ASI) report which indicated the existence of a 'pre-existing underlying structure dating back to the 12th century'. This structure, according to the ASI, was of 'Hindu origin'. On the contrary, the Muslim parties were unable to provide any credible evidence to back their assertion of ownership for the three centuries after the construction of the mosque in 1528 A.D. They were also unable to offer evidence that 'namaz' was being offered in the mosque. This led to the conclusion that the place of birth of Lord Ram is the threedome structure. Thus the apex court reached the conclusion that 'faith and belief of Hindus since prior to construction of Mosque and subsequent there to has always been that Janmaasthan [sic] of Lord Ram is the place where Babri Mosque has been constructed which is proved by documentary and oral evidence discussed above'. What it implies is that the Hindus have succeeded in establishing a clear case of possessory title to the outside courtyard as they have been worshipping at the Ram chabutra for a long time without any interruptions. Photos: IANS

TN Seshan, the man responsible for cleaning Indian polls, passes away

T Ramalaya Trust Secretary Swami Avimukteshwaranand Saraswati address a press conference regarding the construction of Ram Temple in Ayodhya; in New Delhi on Nov 14 (Photo IANS)

Just 72 hours after the Supreme Court verdict, Hindu Mahasabha shot off a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi demanding criminal cases against Ker Sevaks for bringing down the Babri Masjid be withdrawn

irunellai NarayanaIyer Seshan or TN Seshan, as he was mostly known when he was the election commissioner of India, passed away in Chennai recently at the age of 86. Seshan became famous for transforming Indian elections, especially the way polls were conducted and contested in the country. When Seshan became the election commissioner, the credibility of Indian elections was at an all-time low, with booth capturing and bogus voting having become a facet of every election. Seshan played a pivotal role in changing the functioning of the election commission giving it the much needed strength and will it needed then. He was instrumental in implementing the model code of conduct during elections to put an end to booth capturing and bogus voting. Before becoming the election commissioner, Seshan was the 18th cabinet secretary of India. His tenure as the election commissioner

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TN Seshan assumes significance because 1990’s were the time when India was witnessing the coming of coalition politics and with it many of its unwanted challenges. He was the recipient of Ramon Magsaysay Awardin 1996 for his services to the government.His contribution to Indian democracy by cleaning up Indian elections will be remembered for years to come. DECEMBER 2019


Indian News Queensland | FESTIVALS & EVENTS

Eminent Persons' Oration on "Integrity in Sports" held in Brisbane


nstitute for Australia India Engagement (IAIE) hosted its inaugural Eminent Persons' Oration entitled "Winning or Succeeding: The Role of Integrity in Sports" on November 13 at the Gabba Room, the Gabba. Mr Matthew Hayden AM, former Australian Test Cricketer and IAIE's Goodwill Ambassador to India and Mr Damian Voltz, Senior Intelligence Analyst, National Integrity for Sport Unit, Australia, delivered the oration. At the event, the Award of Excellence was conferred upon Mr Hayden for his contribution to bolstering Australia-India bilateral relations and strengthening integrity in sports. The Award was presented by Dr Ram Mohan, president, Federation of Indian Communities of Queensland (FICQ) in the presence of Dr Ashutosh Misra, CEO and Executive Director of IAIE, and other esteemed guests. Also, Karmveer Award was conferred upon Mr Samir Vora, COO and executive Director, Adani Mining, for his contribution to bolstering Australia-India bilateral business and trade relations. The Award was presented by Mr Shaun Starr, Director, Centre of Australia India Studies at the Jindal Global University, India. Stakeholders from the Queensland Police, Australian Federal Police, National Integrity in Sports Unit, Australian Crime and Intelligence Commission, Griffith University, University of Queensland, Centre of Australia India Studies, Jindal Global University, Australia India Business Council, Adani Mining, Federation of Indian Community of Queensland, Bendigo Bank, University of New South Wales, leaders of the community and corporate sector, among others, attended the engaging event.

Mr Matthew Hayden delivering his oration

Award of Excellence being presented to Mr Hayden (left) by Dr Ram Mohan (middle); on the right is Dr Ashutosh Misra

Dr Ashutosh Misra, CEO and Executive Director of IAIE, speaking on the occasion

Mr Samir Vora (3rd left), COO and executive Director, Adani Mining, being presented the Karmveer Award for his contribution to bolstering Australia-India relations

Alliance forms to prevent euthanasia


new community group has been formed to prevent the legalisation of euthanasia and assisted suicide in Queensland. Calling itself the No Euthanasia Alliance (NEA), the group knits together a broad range of community members, including medical professionals, palliative care experts and corporate leaders. The alliance’s emergence comes as a Parliamentary Health Committee concludes its public hearings into aged care, palliative care and the desirability of VAD laws. The committee is now preparing its report and recommendations for state MPs, with a delivery deadline of 31 March, 2020. “We are apolitical on this matter,” Alliance spokesperson Ms Branka van der Linden said. “Our goal

is simply to stop any legislation which would promote intentional killing from proceeding, no matter which party or individuals bring it forth onto the floor of parliament.” “The Alliance sees a properly funded palliative care system available on a state-wide basis, as the truly compassionate way forward. We will not go quietly against any legislative moves

that so radically undermine the foundational values of society and our medical system,” she added. In a position statement posted online, the NEA listed protection of the vulnerable and the undermining of palliative care as the key reasons for its opposition to VAD. To underscore its concerns for the vulnerable in society it provides

data from the US state of Oregon, where ‘being a burden’ had risen by 20% as the cited reason for assisted suicide over the course of two decades since legalisation. On the fluidity of safeguards, they point to the experience of Europe where state-sanctioned assisted suicide or euthanasia have broadened from the terminally ill whose death is imminent to people who are encountering normal aging processes, people with disabilities and individuals suffering from depression, and mental illnesses. The NEA said rather than surrender to a culture where judgment calls will be made on whether a life is worth living, it still believes in the value of each human person. “Queensland communities are strengthened and

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enriched through mutual respect for human life and through ensuring that effective, caring and compassionate care is readily available to the sick and dying,” Ms Linden said. “The proponents of VAD make much of their wish to provide ‘choice’, and how its legalisation and improved palliative care are not mutually exclusive. “That will come as a surprise to people in regional Victoria (where VAD is now legal) and Western Australia (where legislation is now being voted upon). “Consider the inequality and indignity that VAD services will potentially be available 365 days a year in those states, and deliverable to even the remotest regions, but palliative care will not.



Indian News Queensland | YOUTH

All lights on you


t's your turn to speak. Hundreds of eyes are staring at you. The stage's lights are all shining onto you. Every single soul present is listening, for you to make your next move. Wow, sounds a bit scary, doesn’t it? Have you ever heard of the terms, "stage fright" or "performance anxiety"? "Stage fright" means that you have a fear of performing in front of an audience or a camera. Some people experience stage fright to an extreme level, and they're so nervous that they start to have excessive sweating, heart palpitations, extreme anxiety and they start making a lot of errors in the performance. Stage fright, anxiety, poor social connectedness, it all links to a lack of confidence. Confidence in oneself is a highly valuable skill to have. It can build your self-esteem and make those speaking-in-public moments easy as pie. Follow the steps listed below, and you'll have this quality nailed down. Don't over-apologise Rather than repeating, "I'm sorry" over and over, just say something like, "I hope this hasn't been too much trouble". Over-apologising makes you unsure of yourself. Why apologize for something you didn't do wrong? Additionally, when you over-apologise, you don't really

mean it. It’s important to only apologise when you mean it, or it loses its value. Take risks Let's look at a scenario. Your school is hosting a talent show, and you really want to perform a dance in it, but you're scared that everyone might judge you; you also haven't ever danced in public before, so it's a bit scary. Well, what do you do? Dance in the show like you want to or not dance in the show, in fear of being mocked by your peers? In the end, does it really matter what others think of you? Remember, it's okay to be scared, but being scared shouldn't stop you from doing what you want. As Suzy Kassem said, "Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will." We all need some self-assurance from time to time, so if you need further help, don't be afraid to talk to a trusted adult or a counselor. You can even call Kids Helpline, if you feel weird or awkward talking to someone oneon-one. Many people think that being a confident person means that you just jump on a stage with no fear, or that you're not nervous on the first day of school or when speaking in front of an audience. It really isn't like that. I started high school this year. My school hosted

Suhani a talent show towards the start of the year. I signed up to do a solo for the show, knowing that all my peers and teachers would watch me perform. I was nervous about making a bad first impression in front of everyone. But I also knew that if I didn’t do it, I would really regret it afterwards. So, I put my fear beside and did it. It went great, everyone seemed to like my performance; I felt like

QTA Vidyarthi Nestham organises free student networking event


ueensland Telugu Association (QTA) oragnised its first free student networking event at Moorooka Community Centre on November 24. QTA has formed a new wing called "QTA Vidyarthi Nestham" comprising of few management committee members of the association. The main objective of this wing is to provide information and assistance to Telugu students who come from India to Queensland for their higher studies. Vidyarthi Nestham are two Telugu words, where "vidyarthi" means student and "nestham" means friend. As the name suggests, this wing’s function is to closely work with the Telugu student community and provide

tailored information on the topics of interest to them. Around 30 students had registered for this event this time. As per the participants' feedback, the sessions are informative and useful for them. This networking event was divided into four half-hour sessions: (1) Australian Culture and Etiquette, presented by Krish Ravipati, an accountant in private company; (2) Insurance Tips for students by Suraj Shrikumar, a legal practitioner, and Migration Tips by Ravi Gundepalli, a registered migration agent; (3) Internship Tips by Vijay Sen Kunduru, an IT professional working for Queensland Government, Ravindra Eranti, an accountant at local City Council, and Hari Panchumarthi, a maritime structural engineer; and (4) Part

Time and Casual Job Tips passed on by some of the business owners, presented by Hari Panchumarthi. The last half hour was allocated for Q&A and interactive session. Vidyarthi Nestham intends to run this kind of networking event once every quarter, organising presentations on different topics each time based on the interest gathered through online registrations. Interested students can register their EOI through QTA's main objective is to "maintain and promote Telugu culture, literature and tradition among Telugu-speaking people in Queensland". You can contact them through email qldteluguasn@gmail. com or on Facebook at facebook. com/QueenslandTelugu.

QTA Vidyarthi Nestham participants and organisers Srikrishna Ravipati sharing Australian culture and etiquette with the participants

I had made my mark. The most important thing in the little story I just told you wasn’t the cheering that everyone did at the end, the highlight was not giving up on something because of others' judgment. We're all beautiful in our own ways, we don't need to be reminded of that, we don't need others' approval for that, and we don't need to prove that. Be confident and love yourself.

Don't be scared to be different. Being unique is a quality that we all are born with, so let's not shut it down, and let's use it to the best of our abilities. By Suhani Sharma (Suhani Sharma is 13 and currently in Grade 7. She writes on social issues among the youth, common problems that teenagers experience, as well as fun topics.)

Suicide Prevention Network awarded 2019 Postvention Award


t the Postvention Awards Dinner held on the occasion of 2019 International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day on November 23 at White Lady's Event Venue, Kelvin Grove, the Power of Us, Suicide Prevention Network, has been awarded 2019 Postvention Award for its contribution towards the transcultural community with their networking efforts and workshop on positive mental health and suicide prevention. Organisers of the awards, StandBy Support After Suicide, provide brief counselling, support and training to communities impacted by suicide. Their Suicide Postvention Award Program rewards community members and organisations who are active postvention advocates and/or provide suicide bereavement support in Brisbane and surrounds. The program is administrated through a nomination program, which is assessed by a local selection committee. For further information, please visit

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Mr Shyam Das of Target Travel and Tours with 2019 Postvention Award



Indian News Queensland | MIGRATION

Q&A Session with our migration expert Question 1: A Joy I am from Kerala, writing this letter to enquire regarding the possibilities of migration to or study visa in Australia. I have completed the master's degree, Master of Social Work, and have five years of experience as a community social worker. I took both IELTS General and Academic, and in both modules I have overall 6 bands. I heard many opportunities in Northern Territory, even with lower IELTS score. Please guide me if there is any possibility for me to migrate to or study in Australia. Answer: Thank you for the email. To migrate to Australia as a Social Worker, you must get IELTS (Academic) 7 band in each. As your qualification and experience is from overseas, it should be assessed by the professional body AASW at the time of skills assessment. Upon receiving positive skills assessment, an applicant can proceed with the skilled migration process, provided they score minimum 65 points. Regarding the exemptions on English language proficiency, it depends upon the visa you apply and the requirements applicable to get such exemptions for those visas. Normally English language score exemptions

or waiver are available for employersponsored visas. Question 2: D Mathew I am an optometrist in the Middle East since November 2010. I also worked in Kerala for two years earlier in the same job before going to the Middle East. My wife is a registered nurse in UAE with eight years' experience. What are the options for us to migrate to Australia? Answer: Both of your occupations are on skilled occupation list, enabling skilled migration to Australia for you. Regarding the occupation of optometrist, an applicant should get positive skills assessment from the professional body Optometry Council of Australia & New Zealand (OCANZ). As you have completed academic qualification overseas, you must go through an examination, named Competency in Optometry Examination (COE), to get positive skills assessment. This is a two-part examination, consisting of written and clinical parts, and must pass all components. Thereafter, applicant can initiate migration process to Australia. Regarding your partner, she must get registration as a RN from AHPRA in

Australia and also get skills assessment done subsequently before she initiates the migration process as main applicant. With the new changes since 16/11/2019, if your partner gets positive skills assessment, you would get 10 more points. If your partner gets competent level English score alone, you would get 5 points in addition to your points claimed. Question 3: C Haifa I received skills assessment from CPA recently as Accountant (General). It is heard our occupation is removed from state list. If it is correct, am I eligible to apply for PR ? Answer: The Accountant occupation is still in the skilled occupation list for independent skilled migration to Australia. It is a flagged occupation for long time, but not removed from the list. However, different states participate in the state sponsored migration fix their state list according to their labour market needs in those states. Therefore some participant states in Australia keep the Accountant occupation in their state list, while some state not included. The applicants must go through specific state requirements before

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opting state sponsored migration. Also note, Accountant occupation demands high points (currently 90) to get invitation for main visa application from the Department of Home Affairs. Question 4: A Sunny I am an Australian resident but was working in New Zealand. I got a job in Australia recently so I moved back here two months ago. My wife and kid went to home country. I applied for visiting visa for my wife so that she can come to Australia. But the visa got rejected, and the reason mentioned was the possibility of staying back in Australia after her visiting visa period because of my presence in Australia. I am not sure what I can do to bring my wife and kid to Australia. Answer: We presume you are a Permanent Resident in Australia. If so, you could bring them as your family members in Australia. In case you are a temporary Australian resident, such as on an employer sponsored visa, you had the option to add the family at the nomination stage of the process, followed by lodging visa application, for the whole family. Still you have the option now to bring them as

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subsequent entrants depending upon the visa you currently hold. Question 5: A Varghese l would like to apply for DAMA visa. l have 13 years of experience as a plumber, and l have UAE driving license. l am an Indian citizen currently working in Dubai for the past 13 years. l can provide the evidence of my studies and experiences in this field for your references, if required. lf you could kindly guide me through the visa process and help me find an employer. Answer: As a plumber, your are eligible to apply for skilled migration, provided you get minimum 65 points. This is dependent on your age, qualification, English language skills, work experience, partner’s skills, etc. The mentioned DAMA visa is basically an employer sponsored visa with different requirements to be satisfied. DAMA visas have own criteria for sponsoring employers. You may check with various state DAMA of their requirements first and contact prospective employers there. Employers may nominate you if they need to fill a position and you are a suitable candidate to be nominated to such a position. Email: Web: Skype: prathap.tnmc

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Indian News Queensland | RELIGION

The Banyan Tree: The Lord of the Forest

The holy banyan tree gives and gives, and like the sun and the rain, it is not partial to any, dedicating its life for the welfare of all living beings, writes Sharon Bath Photos: Sharon Bath


he dharma of the banyan tree is to give shelter; it provides oxygen and absorbs carbon dioxide and gives protection and generous, cool shade to many living beings. In Ayurveda, the tree provides fruit, flowers, roots, bark and latex for medicines, plus we use its wood for fuel, furniture and religious fires. The tree gives and gives, and like the sun and rain, it is not partial to any. The tree dedicates its life for the welfare of all living beings, including the very atmosphere. No wonder the humble, yet mighty tree, is compared to a saintly gentleman or to the Lord Himself. It may surprise you to know there are many types of banyan trees throughout the world, but we will

Young Moreton Bay fig (Australian banyan) at Stradbroke Island off the coast of Brisbane_ one can see just how the banyan fig tree consumes the host tree, known by another of its names - Strangler

focus primarily on the national tree of India, the Bengal fig (Ficus Bengalensis). The banyan tree is part of a large group of trees that usually begin life as an epiphyte, which means they grow on another tree (host plant) or on rock, and in the end they consume their host. For that reason they are called strangler figs. There’s sometimes confusion between the banyan and peepal tree, and both trees are sacred figs. If you understand the growing habit of the banyan tree you will never make the mistake. The banyan tree’s habit is to keep expanding outward. The banyan tree grows aerial roots into the ground which form new trunks; these trunks have the potential to cover many acres of land. It is like the tree that has many feet that start walking away from the central trunk. Divine associations The holy banyan tree is a sacred tree and a symbol of immortality, associated with Lord Shiva. The banyan tree is compared to the Adi Guru who offers his shelter to seekers of Truth. Shri Dakshinamurti is a form of Lord Shiva who meditates under the banyan tree, facing southward. There’s a legend that says Shri Dakshinamurti taught the four Kumara brothers while keeping perfectly silent. Shri Dakshinamurti made the chinmudra - the index finger touching the thumb, reminding spiritual seekers of the ultimate goal of life: union of the individual soul with the Supreme Soul. Savitri and Lord Yama’s boon Lord Yama (the Lord of Death) also has associations with the banyan tree, and the tree is often planted near cemeteries; spirits are said to live in close proximity to the tree. Many cultures associate the banyan tree as being a house for spirits. There’s a legend about a chaste wife called Savitri who

Banyan fig at Brisbane City Botanical Gardens saved her husband from death, due to her piety, devotion to her husband, determination and sheer wit. Married women still honour Savitri each year with a festival; she is considered a role model and symbol of the virtuous wife. The reason the banyan tree features so strongly at festival time is that Lord Yama took Savitri's husband’s soul while he lay under the banyan tree and after three days of following Lord Yama and receiving several boons, Savitri finally received the boon from Lord Yama which allowed her husband to come back to life. Savitri’s husband regained consciousness under the shelter of the banyan tree. During this often elaborate festival known as 'Vat Savitri', married women diligently fast, and the banyan tree is offered gifts of flowers and incense and is tenderly wrapped in white or coloured threads for the long life of the husband in this life and following lives and for the happiness of the family. Ramakrishna Paramhansa and Sarada Devi Many saints have had a connection with banyan trees. They have meditated and found

Nurture your spiritual life through meditation on the inner Light (Jyoti) and Sound (Naad) and realise your true self. All events are free. Moreton Bay fig trees at Wellington Point, Brisbane

Banyan trunks at Roma Street Gardens, Brisbane CBD

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Indian News Queensland | RELIGION enlightenment within their shelter and they themselves have given talks under their shady umbrella. They have also used banyan trees in parables as well as metaphors in their discourses and in simple conversation with devotees. The language of the saint is very much connected to nature, so that we ordinary people can understand great truths more easily. In addition, the saint will ask us to look for God in every living being, including the tree. Ramakrishna Paramhansa had many visions under the magnificent canopy of the banyan tree, which is one of the five sacred trees that make up the Panchavati. The Panchavati is a grove of trees -- banyan, peepal, ashoka, amla and bel, and these five were planted under Shri Ramakrishna’s supervision in the grounds at Dakshineswar Kali Temple in West Bengal. The banyan tree was planted at the centre of the Panchavati. Paramhansa Ramakrishna knew the growing habit of the banyan tree intimately, as he said: “The ego is like the root of a banyan tree, you think that you have removed it all then one fine morning you see a sprout flourishing again.” The wife of Shri Ramakrishna, mother Sarada Devi, also made a comparison to the banyan tree when she warned us

about worldly desires: “Desire may be compared to a minute seed. It is like a big banyan tree growing out of a seed, which is no bigger than a dot.” Chandogya Upanishad The Chandogya Upanishad also gives us a teaching which involves the banyan tree. In order to instruct his young son about Supreme Reality, an illumined father teaches his son in a very practical way. The setting takes place in the shadow of a majestic banyan tree. The father tells his son to pick up a banyan fruit and break it open and see what it contains. The son does so and replies that the seeds inside are exceedingly small. The father then tells his son to break open the tiny speck of a seed within the fruit and then asks him what he sees. The son replies that he sees nothing at all. The father then explains that the subtle essence which is invisible to the eye—from that very essence the great banyan tree arises. “Believe me, my son, an invisible and subtle essence is the Spirit of the whole universe. That is Reality. That is Atman. Thou are that.” --Chandogna Upanishad (The Upanishads, Penguin Books, 1965; p.117)

Where to see a banyan tree in Queensland We are spoiled for choice in sunny Queensland as there are so many banyan trees located here. In fact, the best Indian banyan tree in the whole of Australia (A National Trust tree) is found at the Botanical Gardens in Brisbane CBD. It is absolutely awe-inspiring, to say the least. Planted in the 1870’s, it is located adjacent to the Gardens Point, University of Technology, inside the south western fence of the gardens, not too far from the cafe. It makes me happy to imagine that the tree at the Botanical Gardens was planted as a sapling in Shri Ramakrishna’s lifetime. There’s a natural association both are noble giants from Bengal. There’s more than one banyan tree planted in the city's Botanical Gardens. You will also find a very impressive native banyan tree right next to the Indian banyan. This native banyan (Ficus Microcarpa), commonly known as the Chinese banyan or curtain fig, has a wide area of distribution in Asia, as well as the coasts of Queensland and New South Wales.

There’s also a grove of Indian banyan trees (Ficus Bengalensis) at Roma Street Parklands (In Brisbane CBD) and also at South Bank Parklands, which are both well worth a visit. At Roma Street Parklands, there’s one free musical event each month in 2019 on Banyan Lawn. There are additional mighty banyan trees to be found at Botanical Gardens at Mt. Coottha. If you have never been there, you really must. It is an amazing place to visit; there are many areas for picnics on the waterlily-filled lake and its surrounds. Where to buy a banyan tree The banyan tree is not a suitable tree for the home garden. It is no use collecting the seed yourself either; all the seed of the Indian banyan in Australia is sterile because we do not have the right wasp for the job of pollinating the little tiny flowers which are found inside the fruit. However, you can buy the fertile seed of Ficus Bengalensis online at www. and try your luck if you have the space.

Furthermore, there is a magnificent grove of Australian banyan trees, known as Moreton Bay figs, at Wellington Point where children can play under their canopy. The Australian banyan (Ficus Macrophylla) is found at coastal areas in Queensland and New South Wales. Another similar fig tree playground is situated at New Farm Park where children can really enjoy these mighty trees up close on the boardwalk and in the tree house. We are extremely privileged in Queensland to have spectacular, pristine rainforest on our doorstep. It is an unimaginably beautiful experience to be in close proximity of banyan-style trees in a rainforest setting. The birds, bats and other small creatures that visit the tree and make it their home are a joy to see and hear. Truly, the banyan is the Lord of the forest. In Brisbane, the Bengal fig is also the Lord of the CBD at Brisbane City Botanical Gardens on the Brisbane River. It’s a beautiful place to visit on a hot summer’s day, and the river always offers a cool breeze.

103,764 Bible students graduate at Shincheonji Church


n just over a year, more than 100,000 people graduated after completing a Bible study course in Shincheonji Church on November 10, 2019. The Bible study is a 6-month course, delivered without cost, that must be completed in order to register as a church congregation member. Due to the corruption and the secularization of today’s world, a great number of people are coming to Shincheonji to study the Bible and to fill their spiritual needs. Currently, there is a decrease in the number of people who identify themselves with a religion worldwide. However, within the short time of one year, 100,000 people streamed into a church called Shincheonji Church of Jesus, the Temple of the Tabernacle of the Testimony (a newly rising denomination in the Republic of Korea). The graduation took place in the province of Gyeonggi-do, and approximately 50,000 graduates were present in the audience. International graduates overseas also participated through live stream broadcasting. The graduation was broadcast in the major cities of Korea. The average church size within Australia is 121 congregation members, which means that if such a graduation were to occur in Australia, then Shincheonji would have effectively grown into 857

churches within the year. This bucks the trend of the decreased interest in religion globally and on top of that the increase in this sudden interest is characterised by an in-depth study of the scripture. Church leaders of traditional Christianity in the Republic of Korea responded to the rapid growth of Shincheonji this year by saying, “Everyone in the world of religion needs to repent and readjust from becoming entangled with corruption, politics and the increasing incidents of sexual impropriety, that are loses the trust of believers.” However, Shincheonji states that 95% of those who chose to come to Shincheonji, come because of the excellent teaching of the Bible in its entirety, from Genesis to Revelation. They claim that the greatest difference between traditional churches and Shincheonji is that it is the only place that teaches the prophecies and the fulfillment of Revelation. Shincheonji is expected to grow further as there are currently 200,000 people studying the Bible. At this rate of growth, Shincheonji will reach a million congregation members within three years. For more information on Shincheonji’s Bible course, people can call +61 424 233 467 or email

Passing the tassle of the graduation cap

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Indian News Queensland | TRAVEL

Quick escapade to a royal retreat Being a hub of elaborate architecture, traditional artwork and Rajasthani cuisine, the royal abode Jaipur lures globetrotters and Indians alike, writes Devashish Chakraborty

Hawa Mahal is dotted with jharokasor latticed windows from where the women of royal family could look out without breaking the stringent rules of purdah


n the early 18th century, when Rajput ruler Jai Singh II laid the foundation stone for Jaipur, the capital city of modern-day Rajasthan, little did he discern that it would lure globetrotters from the farthest corners of the world. Being inherently drawn to cities where the past continues to reverberate despite the flagrant yet inevitable onslaught of cosmopolitan culture, I chose to visit Jaipur in 2018. Having visited Jaisalmer earlier, an equally alluring place, I wished to relish the decadent yet invariably majestic charm of the Rajasthan’s capital, popularly known as the ‘Pink City’. Though the sun no longer beat down mercilessly like an anvil on that morning in the middle of July when my friends and I emerged out of the Jaipur airport, a gust of dry, sultry wind reminded us that the mercury had done anything but subsided. Since our sojourn was only going to last for three days, we decided to begin our exploration of Jaipur’s medieval forts standing stoically with their unyielding walls, their enduring strength and valour, in sharp contrast to the transient nature of their surroundings. We were fortunate to have been assigned a tour guide by the hotel. He was not only a genuine history enthusiast but also a connoisseur of Rajasthani cuisine and traditional artwork. The silent sentinel The founding father of Jaigarh Fort was the one who had also built the city of Jaipur. The eponymous Jai Singh II built it as a fortification against hostile invaders on the promontory called the Cheel Ka Teela (hill of eagles), which is a part of the Aravalli range. It is located 10 km away from Jaipur.

The excellent vantage point of the rugged and sprawling fort offers vistas of the landscape below, and one can almost visualise the legions of elephants bearing pouches of water on their back lumbering up the hill towards the fort. This was a customary practice and we were enlightened about this fact by our tour guide as his eyes glittered with barely concealed pride while narrating the legendary tales of the royal inhabitants of Jaipur. Built entirely of red sandstone, the edifice of the Jaigarh Fort seems to beckon the past with its silent yet resilient presence and its communion with the aura of its medieval occupants. Its vast ramparts and wide parapets exemplify the tenaciousness of ancient architectural designs which can weather any storm irrespective of its ferocity. The erstwhile centre of artillery production for the Rajput rulers, the fort houses a cannon named Jaivanawhich was the then world’s largest cannon on wheels. Legend has it that it was fired only once as its gargantuan size made it impossible to operate it safely. The royal abode Lying to the north-east of Jaipur and connected to Jaigarh Fort by a subterranean passage is the Amber Palace, also known as the Amer Fort. This was the principal place of residence of the Rajput rulers’ families. Constructed predominantly of sandstone and marble, one having a keen eye for architectural intricacies and subtleties can discern an underlying influence of Mughal architecture in the layout of this impressive work of masonry. Consisting of a series of four courtyards, palaces, halls and

Amber Palace, the principal residence of the Rajput rulers’ families, lies to the north-east of Jaipur and is connected to Jaigarh Fort by a subterranean passage Courtesy Kuldeep Singh - Wikimedia

Jaigarh Fort, as seen from the Amer Fort

Courtesy Wikimedia

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Indian News Queensland | TRAVEL gardens, its grandest feature is the primary courtyard at the entrance, known as Jaleb Chowk, where the king’s soldiers gathered and paraded around. If you possess a fertile imagination, you can easily conjure up the image of those soldiers of the bygone era decked up in heavy metal armour parading about with great aplomb. Proceeding towards the Diwan-eAam or “Hall of Public Audience” and then to the Diwan-e-Khas (hall of private audience), we couldn’t help getting dazzled by the opulence of the interior of the vaulted chambers and vast halls. The almost-omnipresent latticed windows from where the womenfolk could peer out without revealing themselves, captures the essence of the excessively sheltered life that they led and makes me embrace my liberty anew. Yet one is impelled to ponder over the secure existence which they must have enjoyed. As lunch-time arrived, we were more than willing to savour the delicious Rajasthani cuisine. So our erudite tour guide, who proved to be an equally knowledgeable connoisseur of authentic Rajasthani food, led us to the restaurant, 1135AD on level 2 of Amer Palace in Jaleb Chowk. Since we were famished by this time, we decided to order the traditional 10-dish Rajasthani thali, along with laal maas, which is basically mutton curry. The succulent pieces of mutton literally left us licking our fingers. The royal treatment meted out to us provided a glimpse of the kind of royal meals that the kings and their families must have had.

When evening descended and engulfed the palace in an enigmatic air, we waited for the sound and light show at the Kesar Kiyari at the foot of the fort. Narrated in Amitabh Bachchan’s rich and resonant voice, the tales of its glorious past came alive even as the special visual effects and vibrant classical music lent a nostalgic aura to the whole proceedings. At the end of the hourlong presentations, we were left spellbound and decided to resume our remaining exploration of this majestic city the following day. A masterpiece of architectural design Prior to our trip to Jaipur, many of our friends and acquaintances had concurred, when it came to their recommending Hawa Mahal as a “must-visit” for us. Hawa Mahal (palace of winds) is a unique piece of architecture located in Jaipur. Comprising of five floors, it resembles the honeycomb of a beehive externally. Built with red and pink coloured sandstone, it can be regarded as one of the magnificent symbols which justify the name “Pink City” bestowed upon Jaipur. The monument is undoubtedly a photographer’s as well as any ardent architecture aficionado’s delight. The building, which was originally built for the women of the royal family by the Rajput ruler Jai Singh, is dotted with jharokasor latticed windows from where they could look out without breaking the stringent rules of purdah. What one finds striking is the natural

The traditional 10-dish Rajasthani thali, provides a glimpse of the royal meals the kings and their families must have relished daily and inimitable ventilation which eminent for its lac jewellery and the bought a yellow bandhani saree, which draped over a mannequin the ancient architects managed to dazzling array of bangles. achieve by the sheer accuracy of the Located in Kanwar Nagar, it is drew my attention as well. angle of the windows on each floor. open seven days a week and so we We proceeded further to Nehru Spur-of-the-moment shopping met with a throng of enthusiastic Bazaar known primarily for its tourists, both domestic and traditional jootis, which are a spree Though shopping was not on the overseas, even on that Sunday dazzling sight to behold, not least cards, it was some covert cajoling morning. Apart from the jewellery, because of their vibrant, multion the part of our tour guide which it is also well-known for its popular coloured design. As the hour of our prompted us to buy some souvenirs bandini tie and dye fabrics with rich departure drew near, all of us found on the third day of our visit to embroidery, brassware and designer ourselves reluctant to go back to remember this short yet immensely carpets. My female companions the daily rut of our mundane lives. enjoyable trip. Many might not be ended up buying several pieces We bid adieu to Jaipur even as the aware of the fact that Jaipur is as of lac necklaces, bracelets and an poignant strains of a Sarangi played much a shopper’s delight as it is a armful of bangles as none of them by a young boy outside our hotel history buff’s, for there are some could resist the prospect of adorning pulled at the strings of our heart. really remarkable shopping hubs themselves with these exquisite My only regret is that so much within the Pink City. Our first ornaments which bespoke the remained unexplored and I would stop was Tripolia Bazaar, which is extraordinary talent of the artisans need more visits to the Pink City. who made them. One of them also

Arvo gathering at Ingrid's apartment raises funds for Friends of Mithra


experience in Mithra. All were moved by the teachers and sisters and the hard work and commitment they show every day to care for and teach the special students at Mithra. By the end of the afternoon, all merchandise had been sold and many generous donations had been given. We thank everyone for their attendance and interest in helping Friends of Mithra continue to support the work of Sister Mary Theodore. By Marnie Venturini

t was a beautiful, sunny Sunday afternoon when we gathered at Ingrid and Andy’s apartment in Brisbane. This was the second time they had opened their place and welcomed about 100 friends and family to raise money for Mithra. While enjoying champagne and amazing food from Hawthorne Garage and Heidi Batson, guests were able to purchase some beautiful items handmade by the children at Mithra. There were greeting cards with patterns sewn in silk thread, table cloths, wine bags and gift bags with block

print designs and tablecloths handstitched with hearts, clubs, spades and diamonds. Guests watched a touching video showing Mithra and its students and heard from Paul Flanders, principal of the Edmund Rice Flexible Schools, who had recently returned from a trip to India with eight students and four teachers. He spoke emotionally about the lives of the students on the trip and the personal struggles they put aside to travel to Mithra and experience its magic. Three boys from St Joseph’s Gregory Terrace also spoke about their recent

Amazing food from Hawthorne Garage and Heidi Batson

About 100 friends and family members came to raise money for Mithra

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Indian News Queensland | SPORTS

India wreck Bangladesh ship to inch closer to ICC World Test Championship They now have 360 points on the table, way ahead of any other team in the international arena, writes Rabindra Mukherji


ndia have now come closer to reach the pinnacle of the ICC World Test Championship following their 2-0 series win over Bangladesh at the Eden Gardens, Kolkata. They now have 360 points on the table, way ahead of any other team in the international arena. As for the second Test against Bangladesh, it was once again history in the making for more reasons than one. For one, it was the first ever daynight pink ball Test match played in India. The second heartening fact was that India became the first side to win four consecutive Tests by an innings margin. First it was South Africa whom they beat by innings in the last two Tests of their previous series, followed by victories in both Tests against Bangladesh by a similar margin. That India are now a formidable force in world cricket is perhaps a cliché, with the predictable way in which they are demolishing the opposition on their home turf. Incidentally, this was India's seventh consecutive Test victory ever. They started off beating West Indies 2-0 in the Caribbean, then followed it up by whitewashing South Africa 3-0 and Bangladesh 2-0 at home. Day-night experiment a success This was the first time a day-night Test match was held in India with a pink ball. The players felt that they did not find any difficulty in spotting the pink ball in the background. However, the hardness of the pink ball was more than the traditional red one's, and this would take some getting used to if day-night pink ball Test matches are to become a regular feature in international cricket. Pacers do it again The success story of India’s pace attack did not start with Kapil Dev or even after the advent of Zaheer Khan, Ashish Nehra and Irfan Pathan. It started with the introduction of the likes of Umesh Yadav, Ishant Sharma, Mohammad Shami and Harprit Bumrah. Though Bumrah is not taking any part in the recent success of the Indian team against Bangladesh due to injury, he is part of an Indian pace attack that now hurries the opponents with their fast and furious deliveries. As many as four balls had hit the helmet of the opposition batsmen, and this time it was the Indian pacers doing it. In the last Test match against Bangladesh, Ishant,

Shami and Umesh made the Indian spinners look redundant, and that too on an Indian pitch. A figure of 9 wickets by giving away 78 runs was Ishant Sharma’s second-best match figures in a Test after 10/108 against West Indies in Bridgetown in 2011. Also, the dominance of Indian pacers can be discerned from the fact that two Indian pacers Ishant and Umesh picked up five wickets each, Ishant 5/22 in the first innings and Umesh Yadav 5/53 in the second. The Indian pacers have now been consistent in winning games for the team. Virat show in first innings Indian batting has lived up to its reputation with the middle order performing, though the openers failed to impress this time around. Cheteshwar Pujara is showing he is back to his scoring ways, though a ton still eludes him. Rahane has been consistent and that is just about what India needs going ahead. But Virat Kohli has once again proved that he is a class apart, scoring yet another ton. His effortless classy stroke-making even elicited applause from an opposition bowler.

Indian skipper Virat Kohli being felicitated during the first ever day-night Test match between India and Bangladesh. Also seen BCCI President Sourav Ganguly, Secretary Jay Shah and Former Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar

Indian skipper Virat Kohli shakes hands with BCCI president Sourav Ganguly during Day 3 of the 2nd Test

Now with the bowling looking sharp, stinging and full of fury, along with the command in batting, India are well set to win Test series abroad as well. The belief is there and so is the ammunition. It augurs well for Indian Test cricket, thanks to some good work at the domestic level as well as the great influence of IPL. Healthy competition dividends


None of the players, except perhaps a few, in the Indian cricket team is taking his place in the side as a certainty. There are competitions and healthy ones too. If Umesh does not perform, there are others to take his place. Bumrah is still recovering and once he is fit would surely be considered for a place in the side. Other young fast bowlers are waiting for their chances. The same is the case with the batsmen. Rohit and Aggarwal, though have scored big runs, cannot be complacent. They must perform consistently, otherwise there are others to take their place. Therefore, there is this vying for a place in the team among the Indian players, which is great to watch.

Indian skipper Virat Kohli during the presentation ceremony after India defeated Bangladesh by an innings and 46 runs, on Day 3 of the second Test match, at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Nov 24 (Photo Kuntal Chakrabarty-IANS)

An Indian fan enjoys on Day 3 of the second Test match between India and Bangladesh, at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Nov 24, 2019. This was the first-ever pink ball Day-Night Test match for both the countries (Photo IANS)

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Indian News Queensland | SPORTS

MAQ Open Cup 2019 won by Aussizz Elevens


or three days, 16 teams competed in 31 matches during the cricket tournament MAQ Open Cup 2019 held at Heathwood Park in Forest Lake, Brisbane. Semi finals and the grand final took place at Heathwood Park on November 24. The tournament, presented by Relianze Home Loans, was claimed by the Aussizz Elevens, with the Napoleons as the runners-up. The dignitaries who supported and attended the tournament were Councillor Angela Owen, Councillor Lisa Atwood, FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan, Senator Paul Scarr, Mr Satish Rajendran, Multicultural Ambassador for Queensland Cricket, Dr Jacob Cherian and Krishnan Menon, among others.

All the teams with the dignitaries and the chief guest

The winning team Aussizz Elevens

Councillor Angela Owen wishing all a great tournament

FICQ President Dr Ram Mohan presenting the winning amount to the tournament winners' captain

Krishnan Menon (right) at Heathwood Park, Forest Lake

Councillor Lisa Atwood, with her baby girl, on the tournament open day

Dr Jacob Cherian sharing the relationship between MAQ and cricket

Players waiting patiently to get to the fields on the inauguration day on November 18

Senator Paul Scarr sharing his love of cricket and his childhood memories of cricket

Qld Community Achievement Awards presented


inners were presented their awards at the 2019 Queensland Community Achievement Awards Gala Presentation Dinner held at Royal on the Park, Brisbane, on 29 November. The Awards were hosted by Kendall Gilding, 7NEWS presenter, and almost 400 guests gathered from across the state including official guest, The Hon Coralee O’Rourke MP, Minister for Communities and Minister for Disability Services and Seniors, to celebrate Queensland’s high achievers. Winners each received a $2,500 Award prize from Commonwealth Bank and a trophy. From within the Indian community, Prerna Pahwa was presented as a

Finalist in the prestigious Australia Pacific LNG Community Hero Award, by Alex Kennedy-Clark, General Manager, Origin. Mr Jitendra Deo, currently the President of Arya Samaj Queensland, was presented as a Nominee in the prestigious Australia Pacific LNG Community Hero Award by The Hon Coralee O’Rourke MP, Minister for Communities and Minister for Disability Services and Seniors.

The Winners • Strait Support Pty Ltd of Erub – Queensland Government Small Business Achievement Award • Peninsula Palms Retirement Village of Rothwell – Prime Super Employer Excellence in Aged Care Award

The Winners • Komatsu Mining Corp. of Rockhampton – Synaco Safety Award • Nikki A Creber of Marcus Beach – Australia Pacific LNG Community Hero Award • Stuart Stoddart of Brisbane – Pullenvale Ward Outstanding Achievement Award • Jerome Leray of Goondiwindi – Prime Super Agricultural Innovation Award

Mr Jitendra Deo (left)

Prerna Pahwa (left)

• Aquascene Charters Magnetic Island – Ricoh Australia Customer Service Award • Substation33 of Kingston – Awards Australia Community Group of the Year Award All the winners with their awards

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Indian News Queensland | BOOKS & LITERATURE

Time to get 'Phool Proof'


helum Biswas has studied three self-healing philosophies of aromatherapy, chakra healing and bach flower remedies. Marrying her knowledge to her products, she created her 100 percent natural and homegrown bespoke label. Learning that beauty products work on the principle of cleansing, moisturizing and protection, she created a range which can be personalised as per an individual's need and addresses skin, hair problems and even anxiety, fear, stress and depression issues. A self-funded brand, it has products such as hand creams, body washes, body oils, shampoos and lip balms, all of which are paraben and sulfatefree. Here are the excerpts from the IANS interview at the book launch in November in Bengaluru. Share with us how this book was conceived and what you want to achieve through it? As a person trained to do these therapies and as a healer, I write my thoughts about all the various types of treatments I do, including Yoga and Chakra remedies. Over time, I realised the thread of flower energy walking through

all kinds of healing like the Bach flower therapy, aroma therapy where I work primarily with floral essential oils and Chakra system where everything is represented by different petals of the lotus. The concept of the book came to be as many people are not aware of the healing power of flowers. Also, there are very few academic books on Bach flower remedy. What most books didn't include was the Indian flowers, their benefits and how to use them in our lives and lifestyle segments. This book addresses our lifestyle, healing and spiritual needs as well as our emotional uplifting. It is a self-transformative book with flowers. Flowers for healing and health problems is a subject not many people are aware of, how did you learn of it and what are its advantages? Back in 2013-14, I faced severe breathing problems, which many doctors identified as a precursor of asthma. As my health deteriorated, I decided to take a sabbatical for 2 months and never returned when people, friends and extended family introduced me to the alternative

Jhelum Biswas Bose

Time to get 'Phool Proof'

form of healing, yoga and Bach Flower Remedies. I then pursued Levels 1,2 and 3 courses from the Bach Centre, United Kingdom. During the time, I also studied aroma therapy and was trained to be a yoga teacher and chakra therapist. After practising and realizing the difference it made in my life, I wanted to reach out to more people. That's why I feel the need of bringing an awareness of these alternative healing therapies to cope with today's mental, physical and emotional upheavals and bring down the cost of these therapies by more people practising them sincerely. Please guide us through five miraculous flowers and what their healing attributes are?

Miracle as a word I feel makes everything seem a little out of our reach but flowers have a mystic, or what I call, magic with a K. The five such flowers would be desi gulab, mogra, genda, lavender and geranium. Desi gulab, the rose essential oil has a vibration of 300 megahertz so it kind of affects your heart and helps in opening your emotions. It makes you more compassionate about others. Desi gulab is also a very good ingredient for skin and hair care. The only drawback is its cost. Geranium is considered as a costeffective alternative for desi gulab, with similar benefits for skin and hair, mixed with carrier oil or water. One can also wear it as a single malt perfume.

Mogra is good for the hair and is also an aphrodisiac. Smelling some mogra takes off the cloud of depression as it acts as an antidepressant. Lavender is a very versatile essential oil that helps in healing burns and scars. It can be directly used on the skin causing no harm. Rubbing some lavender oil can ease stomach pains. Genda is always known to brighten up our surroundings with its orange, yellow colours. As it lasts for long, it leaves a very subtle peppery smell. It can also be used as an alternative for saffron in cooking. Text and photos: IANS

Santore Viruthu award recog- Ranjit Singh nises Saradha's service makes into FNQ's to community Most Influential People List Kamban Kalzhagam’s panel of members presented the prestigious award “Santore Viruthu” to Mrs Saradha Ravichandran (Saradha) for her proven contribution to the Tamil language and the community at Wentworthville, NSW, during the Kambarvilzha celebration on October 12. While receiving the award, Saradha thanked the associations and individuals who supported her nomination for the award and also thanked Kamban Kalzhagam’s initiative to award people who serve the community. "There are many talented individuals in this society, and by spreading the message through such awards, more people may be encouraged to share their skills and knowledge for the benefit of our community," she said. Saradha Ravichandran did her postgraduate studies in Tamil literature and graduate studies in education. In her 25 years of voluntary community service, she used her knowledge and skills for the community’s benefit. Saradha’s voluntary work started at Kenya in 1993 as one of the key people to start the Tamil association and Tamil language school for the migrants' children and also for the interested locals. Her activities also

motivated the other Kenyan residents to engage in volunteering. Later she migrated to Australia in 2003 and continued her voluntary service through various activities. She served as the Indian newsreader with ATBC (Australian Tamil Broadcasting Corporation), as a broadcaster and panel operator with Radio4EB TamilOli, teacher and president of ThaaiTamil School (2016), treasurer of the Radio4EB Tamil-Oli committee (2016-2018), and as a key member of the Queensland's largest annual Pongal festival. Saradha was one of the founding members who designed the curriculum for the Thaai-Tamil School, including a vocabulary dictionary. She is also one of the panel writers of the year-8 Tamil book for New South Wales. She has also been invited to speak in many international conferences on topics such as Tamil literature, ancient Tamil international trades and current literature style and growth. She also won the “Volunteer of the Year 2017”, national award from the National Ethnic Multicultural Broadcasters Council (NEMBC). This year, she received the “Sathani Tamilian 2019/Achiever” appreciation certificate from the Queensland Tamil Mantram (QTM).


awyer Ranjit Singh prefers low-key status, but having been promoted recently to head the Far Northern branch of the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) has lent him a higher profile. With that he has also entered the Far North Queensland's (FNQ) Most Influential People's list.

Mrs Saradha Ravichandran being presented with Santore Viruthu award Being practical and outcome driven, Saradha’s contribution is always focussed on having an impact on society. Going by the unanimous feedback from the community, she has often been lauded for her sincerity and encouragement of the young ones. For instance, it was her encouragement, inform the parents of one boy enrolled in Weekend Tamil School who had trouble with Tamil pronunciation and hesitated going to the school, that made the boy continue with the school. As a result, he is now able to communicate with his grandparents in Tamil.

He has practised law in Cairns for 15 years, and after running his own firm for several years, he's now a partner in the Cairns practice of Holding Reddich. His areas of expertise are property and real estate. He acts for World Class Global, a subsidiary of Singaporean SGXlisted Aspial Corporation in relation to their North Queensland projects including Nova City, a $500 million master planned development which includes seven high-rise towers and about 1300 dwellings. Mr Singh also handles the legal affairs of one of Cairns’s largest residential builders and developers,

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Ranjit Singh John Richardson of David McCoy Homes and Kenfrost Homes, who subdivides and constructs more than $80 million worth of homes a year. DECEMBER 2019


Indian News Queensland | WHAT’S ON



Welcomes you to India - Australia Day Celebration’s January 26th Sunday 6.00pm, at SunPAC, 470 McCullough Street, Sunnybank

Please accept the invitation from The Federation of Indian Communities of Queensland (FICQ) for India - Australia Day Celebration to be held on Sunday 26 January 2019 at SunPAC, 470 McCullough Street, Sunnybank 4109 QLD FICQ is the peak body for all Indian Associations and Indian diaspora in Queensland. FICQ plays a significant role working with all Indian organisations with a member of 40 associations who are part of FICQ. It is a unique occasion that the national days of two countries India and Australia fall on the same day 26 January and we would like to celebrate this important day in view of the growing Australia India trade, tourism, education and cultural ties, along with the growing Indian diaspora in Queensland. We sincerely hope that you can join us for a wonderful evening with speeches, great entertainment and delicious food.

Program Schedule: 6.00 pm - 7.00 pm Dinner 7.00 pm - 8.45 pm Official proceedings

Dear Devotees, For the past few years we have been doing the AYYAPPA POOJA & BHAJAN in Brisbane and with your support and grace it has been progressing successfully. This year we have decided to do the Pooja on 7th December (free entry) and the details are as follows: Date: Time: Venue:

7th Saturday, December 2019 5.30pm to 7.00pm – Ashothara Namavali, Deeparadhana. 7.00pm to 8.30pm – Bhajans (Sri Ayyappa Bhajan Group, Brisbane) 8.30pm onwards dinner/prasadam will be served. Arya Pratinidhi Sabha Hall 198 Learoyd Rd, Willawong QLD 4110

Please RSVP to: and indicate your dietary requirements by 24 January 2020. Federation of Indian Communities of Queensland Inc (FICQ). PO Box 157, Spring Hill, QLD - 4004,

We kindly request you all to attend the pooja with your family and friends to get blessings from Lord SWAMI AYYAPPAN. Please forward the flyer to your friends as well. For more information please contact:

Unnikrishnan Nair: 0416 927 100 Jagadeesan M: 0434 486 442 Jayarajan Chaladan: 0433 318 091 Ramanathan: 0404 335 811

Dr. Chitra Das: 3862 1263 Dr. Dwarakanathan: 32193680 Baburaja: 0413 819 875 Ratheesh Mavila: 0411 047 167 or

Please RSVP by 30th November 2019

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Newsletter 154-26 Kaarthikai/KÄ rttika Month (mid-November 2019 to mid-December 2019) Festivals Dear Sri Selva Vinayaka devotees, Hindu Ahlaya Sangam Qld Inc (HASQ) cordially invites you to Sri Selva Vinayakar Temple Brisbane (South Maclean) for Kaarthikai /Kartika Month Festivals. Sri AyyapaSwamy Virutchika Rasi Masa Abishekam/ Kaathikaii Maasa Pirappu on Sunday 17 November 2019 Sri Lalitha Sahastranama Stotram Chanting on Sunday 17 November 2019 Kaarthikai Somavaram viratham on Mondays 18,25 November & 9,16 December 2019 Pirathosha Viratham on Sunday 24 November & Monday 9 December 2019 Amavaasai (New moon) Viratham on Tuesday 26 November 2019 Chathurthi Viratham on Saturday 30 November 2019 Sri Vishnu Sahastranamam & Paaraayanam on Sunday 01 December 2019 Thiru Kaarthikai Viratham /Sarvaalaya Theepam on Wednesday 11 December 2019 Sathya Narayan Pooja/Powrnami Viratham on Thursday 12 December 2019 Pillayaar Kathai-Vinayakar Viratham starts on Friday 13 December 2019 Sankatahara Chathurthi / Sri Lalitha Sahastranama Stotram Chanting on Sunnday 15 December 2019 Visit Brisbane Sri Selva Vinayakar (Ganesha) Temple and get the Blessing of Lord Ganesha. For further information please contact our Temple or the Secretory Mr: M.Surendra on Mobile-0407-753991

Temple Website: Follow us on (click the icons): 4915-4923, Mt Lindesay Highway, South Maclean, Queensland-4280, Australia, Phone: +61 7 5547 7302

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Indian News Queensland | BOLLYWOOD

Indian Movies Coming Soon Ae Kaash Ke Hum

Commando 3

RELEASE DATE: 29 November, 2019 Language: Hindi (with English subtitles) Director: Aditya Datt Cast: Vidyut Jamwal, Urvashi Rautela

Dabangg 3 RELEASE DATE: 17 Jan, 2020 (releasing in India) Cast: Vivan Shah, Priya Singh, Sophiya Singh Produced: Kiran K Talasila, Pankaj Thalore Directed: Vishal Mishra Written: Vishal Mishra, Aabhar Dadhich Shooting locations: Dharmshala, Himachal Pradesh Genre: Romantic tragedy Duration: 98 minutes

Love is the most pious feeling in the world. But what if love happens and you come to know only after love is no more around you. This is the story of love, friendship and fate. How fate controls your life and love in today's fast-paced world. Love blossoms in childhood but takes shape in teen age. Ayush (Vivaan Shah) and Pari (Priya Singh) are classmates and about to confess their love for each other but a twist of fate keeps them away. By the time Pari expresses her love, she finds out it's too late. Fate takes her love away and when he comes back life

has already taken a turn for the worst. This journey brings you to the realisation that love is what remains within you even after the person is not with you anymore. A light-hearted realistic tear-jerker musical, a story of every one with a beating heart.

Language: Hindi (with English subtitles)

“The film is an intense drama that encapsulates the most tender feelings of our lives. The film was shot at the alluring locations of Dharamshala, which was a stunning experience in itself,” says Vivaan Shah about the film.

Director: Prabhu Deva

“The film revolves around campus friendship and romance of three youngsters. But the look and feel of the film is very heartwarming and authentic. We have tried to revive the nostalgic feel of the ’90s which has got lost in today’s times where the rom-coms are too-well packaged with plastic emotions. The film is a core musical at heart with six beautifully composed songs. We have tried to keep the music very clean, free from any raps, Hinglish lyrics or any remixes,” says Director Vishal Mishra.

Bhangra Paa Le well as a present-day take on this energetic Punjabi dance form.

RELEASE DATE: 15 November, 2019 Language: Hindi (with English subtitles) Director: Sneha Taurani Cast: Sunny Kaushal, Rukshar Dhillon

RELEASE DATE: 20 December, 2019

Bhangra Paa Le explores the significance of Bhangra dance in the lives of Kaptaan Singh and his grandson Jaggi Singh. Set against two timelines, the film transitions between both their journeys, giving a historical context as

Kaptaan, a dance enthusiast, gets recruited by the British Army for a unique job. He uses music and dance to motivate soldiers of the British Army (Britishers, Italians, Indians) and encourages them to fight for victory against the Germans during World War 2 (1944). Through his journey, he spreads joy and cheer in an incredibly tough and dark time. But when the joy of dance finishes and war gets the better of him, we see his struggle in finding the love of

Producers: Salman Khan, Arbaaz Khan, Nikhil Dwivedi

Cast: Salman Khan

Panipat RELEASE DATE: 6 December, 2019 Language: Hindi (with English subtitles) Director: Ashutosh Gowariker Cast: Arjun Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt, Kriti Sanon A historical period drama that recounts the events that led up to the third Battle of Panipat between the Maratha Empire and the Durrani Empire in 1761. life he once had. A hero at war now has to find a way to make it back to the love of his life and reignite the same passion he once had for Bhangra. The second protagonist, Jaggi, is a young, confident college boy who is the best dancer his college has ever seen in present-day Amritsar. Through his journey, we discover the nuances of inter-college and international Bhangra competitions. His passion reaches an extreme and becomes an obsession for him, and the film deals with the growth he goes through

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while building and working as part of a team. Sparks fly when he meets another talented dancer, Simi, who is at par with him. But when he discovers that she's from a rival college this romantic story gets a new twist. Now while they are constantly opposing each other, they also start falling for each other. The screenplay transitions between the past and present story throughout and the film explores what Bhangra means to these characters, and more importantly, the impact it has on them.



Indian News Queensland | BOLLYWOOD

Mardaani 2 RELEASE DATE: 13 December, 2019

Rani Mukerji's edge-of-the-seat entertainer Mardaani 2 is set to release this year with producers announcing that the much-awaited cop thriller will release on 13th December. Rani is reprising the role of the fearless and committed Superintendent of Police Shivani Shivaji Roy in Mardaani 2. She had delivered an outstanding performance in the superhit and hugely acclaimed prequel, Mardaani, in which she took on the kingpin of a child trafficking racket.

Language: Hindi (with English subtitles) Producer: Aditya Chopra Director: Gopi Puthran Cast: Rani Mukerji

In Mardaani 2, Rani will be seen pitted against a 21-yearold menacingly evil villain. There is a lot of anticipation on who her villain will be but one thing is for certain that Aditya Chopra is set to launch a new face as the antagonist. The film marks the directorial debut of Gopi Puthran, the writer of the first Mardaani film. Produced by Aditya Chopra, Mardaani 2 was shot extensively in Jaipur and parts of Rajasthan.

Sona Mohapatra on Anu 'Baaghi 3': Malik's stepping down: Tiger Shroff, It's a symbolic victory Vijay Varma - By Simran Sethi (IANS) share a 'great bond' In the second half of November, Malik also took to social media and claimed "false and unverified allegations" were being levelled against him. He said that he was "in pain" and "in a dark space", demanding justice. And then on November 22, the composer decided to quit the show. A source close to Sony TV confirmed to IANS that Malik "is stepping down as a judge from Indian Idol". Malik's decision has come after Sona wrote an open letter to the Union Women and Child Development (WCD) Minister Smriti Irani, urging her to look into the ongoing debate with Malik.


inger Sona Mohapatara on Thursday said that she considers music composer Anu Malik's stepping down as "Indian Idol" judge a "symbolic victory" for all women who have faced sexual harassment. An "elated" Sona told IANS: "It's great news. Sony TV took a long time do this but I am happy that he has finally stepped down from the show. It's a battle of the whole country. There are so many people who did not want to see this person (Malik) flaunting himself on national television because it gives a lot of wrong messages to predators that they can also get away with such a thing." She added: "I was fighting for fairness and justice. Now, after hearing this news, I think it is a victory for eveyrbody -- not just me but also for all other women who

were badly treated by him. It is a symbolic victory. Our fight is not over yet, it's just a start. We are not going to sit here and let people to take us for granted." The issue erupted in 2018 when Mohapatra for the first time accused Malik of sexual misconduct, which forced the composer to step down from season 10 of the show last year. Singers Neha Bhasin and Shweta Pandit had also joined Mohapatra in alleging sexual harassment against Malik. However, when Sony TV reinstated Malik on season 11 this year, Mohapatra restarted her campaign against the composer and the channel. Till the middle of November, she has mustered huge support on social media, and people have increasingly been demanding Malik's removal from the show.

"My open letter to the honourable minister for women & child development. @smritiirani, I hugely admire you, your tenacity and commitment to work for the welfare of people in India and I request you to please read this. Many more women are writing in to me privately about this man," she tweeted. After Sona's letter, National Commission for Women had send notice to Sony TV. The commission also shared the notice on their official Twitter handle. They captioned it: "@ NCWIndia has taken Suo-motu cognizance of this matter and send a notice to Sony Entertainment Television @sharmarekha @ MinistryWCD @PMOIndia." In the notice, the commission mentioned Mohapatra's tweet, and asked the channel to clarify what action was taken on the matter.


ctor Vijay Varma, who is currently shooting for 'Baaghi 3' along with Tiger Shroff in Serbia, says he is having a gala time with the latter on the sets. "I am really having a great time during the shoot of 'Baaghi 3' in Serbia, the shoot is coming out really well. Tiger and I share a great bond and I'm sure that it will be reflected on the big screen," he said. Vijay also shared his admiration for Tiger's father and veteran actor

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Jackie Shroff, who is fondly known as Jaggu dada. "One of the major reasons for our bonding is my love for Jaggu Dada since I'm his big fan. I love hearing stories about Jaggu dada from Tiger about his films and other instances. I have always admired his work," he added. The film also stars Shraddha Kapoor, Ankita Lokhande and Riteish Deshmukh.



Indian News Queensland | BOLLYWOOD

Jacqueline goes into 'Attack' mode in January


ctress Jacqueline Fernandez revealed that she will start shooting for her upcoming action film "Attack" in January. The John Abraham-starrer is a two-heroine project with Rakul Preet Singh sharing screen space, and Jacqueline says she is okay with that fact. "I play a really fantastic role in the film, and the role that Rakul does is also brilliant. When I heard the

story, I was like 'Wow, Rakul's role is really nice' (laughs). I think she will do full justice to it. I am happy she is part of the project," said Jacqueline. She continued: "It's amazing that Rakul has joined us in the film. We had a chat about this and I met her recently, too. I am coming together again with John in this fantastic script and we also have Rakul on board, so it will be great."

Katrina Kaif: Keen on roles that give opportunity to invest


On September 30, John had posted a video on Instagram to make a formal announcement of "Attack". The video showed international stunt coordinator Ryan Sturz teaching John how to hold a gun and shoot a target. "Getting ready to "ATTACK" #mynextactionfilm," John had written in the caption of the picture. "Attack" is helmed by debutant director Lakshya Raj Anand and will be produced by John Abraham.

ctress Katrina Kaif, who has upped the ante with her performances in films like "Bharat" and "Zero", says: "I am keen on taking up roles that will give me the space and opportunity to really invest, get my teeth into the character and explore it. I want to take up roles that will allow me the kind of level of performance which I was able to experience in 'Bharat' and 'Zero'." The actress's performance as Babita in the Shah Rukh Khan starrer "Zero" was widely appreciated by the critics and audience alike. "I need to now make sure that I am only connecting with the films and characters that will challenge and inspire me to bring a new aspect out. When you get unanimous praise, it is always very encouraging. It is a wonderful feeling because your

work is very personal, so what you do when it comes from a personal space, that acknowledgement is also equally personal," she said.

Preity Zinta shooting Yami Gautam to recreate for American 90s iconic videos on Tik Tok sitcom 'Fresh Off The Boat'


fter playing a Tik Tok star in the film "Bala", actress Yami Gautam is all set to make her debut on the social media video application, and she would like to recreate some iconic videos from the 90s. "It's been a busy week and I have not been so gratified with my work in a long time. I think I will give in to the public demand of starting my own Tik Tok account. I don't think I can be an avid user, but I look forward to make some videos on the platform. "I would love to explore and see what all 'Bala' inspired and Pari

Mishra inspired videos other users are making. Personally I would like to recreate some iconic videos from the 90s and do the hook steps to some amazing songs from that time like we did in the movie," Yami said. Yami feels it "will be a good way to connect with the fans who have given the character so much love". On the film front, she will be next seen in "Ginny Weds Sunny", which is touted as a romantic comedy.

Rani Mukerji at Eden Gardens on Day 1 of D/N Test


ctress Preity Zinta is back in action and that too on the American show "Fresh Off The Boat". Preity, who will feature as a guest star in an upcoming episode, has already starting shooting for the show. Announcing her new project, she took to social media and wrote: "And so it begins.... On location to shoot 'Fresh Off The Boat'. Now that the first day of shoot is over and I'm still alive and not shaking with nervous energy .... here is a photo... It's amazing how a change of scene

can make you feel like a newcomer. Loving and absorbing it all." Along with it, she shared a mirror selfie clicked in her make-up room. Set in the '90s, "Fresh Off The Boat" centers on hip-hop loving teenager Eddie Huang and his family, who have adjusted to Orlando and the suburban American lifestyle. "Fresh Off The Boat" is currently in its sixth season. India VJ-actor-comedian Vir Das is also a part of the show. Apart from the sitcom, Preity will also be seen doing a cameo role in Salman Khan's "Dabangg 3".


ani Mukerji attended the first day of the historic pink ball Test match between India and Bangladesh at the iconic Eden Gardens on November 23. She was promoting her upcoming film "Mardaani 2". "This is the first time I will be watching a match at Eden Gardens. I have always heard from my parents that the atmosphere at Eden is electrifying. It's going to be quite an experience for me to watch a cricket match live. I am hoping that I too can make wonderful memories out of this day," Rani had earlier said about the event. "It's another happy

occasion since I am going to be presenting the message of 'Mardaani 2' to the people present there and million others who will be watching the match through the broadcaster." "Mardaani 2" focuses on the rise in violent crimes by juveniles in India and has definitely sparked a conversation on the threat this poses on young girls. Rani is reprising the role of the fearless and committed Superintendent of Police, Shivani Shivaji Roy in "Mardaani 2". Produced by Aditya Chopra, "Mardaani 2" is set to hit theatres on December 13.

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Orion Lagoon Springfield Central

Recognised internationally for its masterplan, Greater Springfield is located 32 minutes from the Brisbane CBD and is Australia’s fastest growing emerging city. As the only planned city in the country (outside of Canberra) major businesses and thousands of residents are already established here.

Queensland Greater Springfield

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AUD $1.2 billion Springfield Rail

Orion Springfield Central developed by Mirvac

Greg Norman designed Brookwater Golf Course


GE HQ, Springfield Central

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Profile for Indian News Queensland

Indian News Queensland - December 2019 Vol 3 Issue 3