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Veteran actress Nanda passes away Details on page 6

Jitu Mehta sets up Engg. Chair in IIT Mumbai Details on page 18

PIO to pay $14mn fine in green card fraud Details on page 44

Jaswant files papers as an Independent Details on page 5

INDIA POST SURVEY survey@indiapost.com This week’s question

Will the BJP infights affect their performance? Last week’s result

Could US have stopped 2nd indictment of Khobragade? YES 76%

NO 24%

VOL 19, No. 1019

March 28, 2014

50¢

Periodical Postage

INDIA GOES SLOW ONLocal EXPAT HIRING talent being preferred

NEW DELHI: Domestic companies are going slow on expat hiring while sharpening their focus on getting Indians with requisite global experience, and this trend is likely to continue for two more years, HR experts say. Companies are now focusing more on budgets and are trying to find the same kind of exposure and experience from Indian talent that expats can offer. They are seen bringing in expats only when the cost of hiring an expat as against an Indian is pretty much similar. Expat hiring was growing at the rate of 10-12 per cent annually till 2012. Since last year, however, there has been a major decline and this dip is likely to continue for a couple more years, experts said. "It is not the rupee depreciation or otherwise but for the fact that it is the required competency level complementing the requirements of Indian companies," GHCL Ltd HR Head Rajesh Tripathi said.

'Spirit Of India' pageant crowns Reena & Puneet Details on page 16

India to pursue visa, tax violation by US School Details on page 6

Manju Goel loses bid for Congress Details on page 6

MASTER & SONS: Sarod maestro Ustad Amjad Ali Khan along with his sons Amaan and Ayaan performing at the United Nations headquarters in New York on March 24

Details on page 5

Certified by “CIRCULATION VERIFICATION COUNCIL Readership 117,765”

Indians, a rising force in US politics: Bera Details on page 6

CONTENTS Bollywood ---------------------- 28-29 Classifieds ------------------------- 26 Community Post -------------- 16-25 Date Book -------------------------- 47 Edit Page --------------------------- 54 HealthScience Post --------- 32-35 Horoscope ------------------------- 11 Immigration Post ------------- 44-46 Life Style ----------------------- 48-52 Philosophy ------------------------- 53 Publisher’s Diary ------------------ 4 Real Estate -------------------- 38-39 TechBiz Post ------------------- 12-14 Travel & Hospitality Post ---- 40-43


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Publisher’s Diary

Y

ou may have heard about the bizarre case of Akash Dalal, a Rutgers College student, who is facing charges for allegedly masterminding and participating in a series of bombings of Jewish synagogues in New Jersey in 2012. As bizarre as the charges are, what is even more unbelievable is the $4 million bail amount that has been set for his release and the fact that for the last more than two years since he has been waiting for a trial, he is being held in solitary confinement in prison. Of course, I am not challenging the legal wisdom of the country's judiciary, but the whole case reeks of some kind of prejudice. Akash, who is now 20 years old, is a US-born citizen. I believe he was politically active, as President of Young Americans for Liberty at Rutgers. Anything else that is said about him - that he had expressed anti-religious or antiAmerican sentiments - would be purely hearsay at this point for me to repeat here, but accusations that he had received military training in the Ukraine, Russia or Korea seem a bit farfetched for someone who has never travelled outside of the US. A section of community activists supporting Akash, have all along been stating that the case was over-charged from the outset. Folks in the New Jersey Indian American community have been rallying in support, and are now intensifying their campaign to ensure justice for Akash. A series of meetings have already been held to gather the community's support, and this Friday, a rally is being organized - where close to a 1000 people are expected to turn up - to create awareness about the case as well as to demand a speedy trial and reduction of the bail amount for young Akash. These folks are asking that the venue of the trial be changed and Akash be given his day in court, which all citizens of the US deserve. Understandably, the community is rattled. How does a perfect GPA student from a normal, hardworking Indian American family get involved in something like this? One doesn't know who or what is to be blamed.

Romesh K Japra rkjapra@indiapost.com

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HIGHLIGHTS Bollywood: New Durga Sujoy Ghosh has replaced his favorite actress Vidya Balan with Kangana Ranaut in his next film titled 'Durga Rani Singh'

Cover Story: Expat hiring Indian firms are going slow on expat hiring while sharpening their focus on getting Indians with requisite experience

Community: Miss South Asia Reena Rai was crowned Miss South Asia 2014 and Puneet Prasad was announced Mr. South Asia 2014 by Spirit Of India

28 1 16

Immigration: PIO in fraud PIO to pay nearly USD 14 million in penalties for defrauding hundreds of foreigners seeking American residency.

Life Style: Habib Khan Magic Sitar Maestro Pandit Habib Khan enthralls with soul-stirring recital at the Villa Montalvo Arts Center in Saratoga

Techbiz: Courting India As the US and Europe try to isolate Moscow over its action in Crimea, Russia is courting India with oil offer

Travel: To Broome, via Kakadu Broome is the gateway to the west Kimberley region of Western Australia, where the outback meets the ocean.

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March 28, 2014

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India goes slow on expat hiring Local talent being preferred NEW DELHI: Domestic companies are going slow on expat hiring while sharpening their focus on getting Indians with requisite global experience, and this trend is likely to continue for two more years, HR experts say. Companies are now focusing more on budgets and are trying to find the same kind of exposure and experience from Indian talent that expats can offer. They are seen bringing in expats only when the cost of hiring an expat as against an Indian is pretty much similar. Expat hiring was growing at the rate of 10-12 per cent annually till 2012. Since last year, however, there has been a major decline and this dip is likely to continue for a couple more years, experts said. "It is not the rupee depreciation or otherwise but for the fact

that it is the required competency level complementing the requirements of Indian companies,"

GHCL Ltd HR Head Rajesh Tripathi said. A steady supply of Indians, who possess the required competence and have paramount global exposure, is also a major factor

that has made domestic firms do a re-think on expat hiring. However, India remains an at-

are open to looking at modest compensation packages which could be termed as a 'pay cut' keeping in view the upsides associA steady supply of ated with specific experience of Indians, who possess working in a the required compelarge, complex tence and have para- and active emerging market such mount global expoas India," execusure, is also a major tive search firm Spearhead factor that has made InterSearch domestic firms do a Founder and MD re-think on expat hiring Jyorden T Misra said. tractive destination for expats and MyHiringClub.com CEO the number of expats looking at Rajesh Kumar said: "Yes, compaassignments and tenures in India nies are willing to get expatriates to boost their resume has gone on board with the global experiup significantly. ence, but on a conservative "Almost 30 per cent of expats mode".

Veteran actress Nanda passes away MUMBAI: Yesteryear Bollywood star Nanda, who lit the cinema screens in the 1960s and early 70s with her stellar performances in 'Hum Dono', 'Gumnaam' and 'Jab Jab Phool Khile', passed away on March 25 following a massive heart attack. Family sources said the 75year-old actress, who was the niece of legendary filmmaker V Shantaram, died at her Andheri residence here. "It is shocking as she did not have any history of illness," a relative of hers told PTI. The actress, who excelled equally in playing a coy Indian beauty as well as roles with modern sensibilities, paired up with many stars onscreen including Ashok Kumar, Kishore Kumar, Dev Anand, Rajesh Khanna and Shashi Kapoor. Nanda was born in 1939 to Marathi actor-director Vinayak Damodar Karnataki. But the family faced hardships after the death of Nanda's father in her childhood. Like many others of her era, Nanda started helping her family by becoming a child star. She made her debut with film 'Jaggu' in the 1950s. It was Shantaram, her maternal uncle, who helped launch Nanda's career in Bollywood by casting her as a 17-year-old in 1956 hit 'Toofan Aur Diya'. The film became a success and

there was no looking back for the actress. Nanda went on to rule the screen space from 1960 till 1973 with Nutan, Waheeda Rehman and Sadhna. Rehman became a lifelong friend of the introvert actress.

Anand in 'Kaala Bazaar' where she played his sister but the actor said he would cast her as his heroine when he made films, a promise that he kept by working with her in 'Hum Dono' and 'Teen Deviyan'. She worked with Rajesh Khanna in 'The Train' when he

Some of her most memorable roles are in 'Jab Jab Phool Khile', 'Gumnaam' and 'Hum Dono'. In 'Jab Jab Phool Khile', Nanda played her career's first westernized role and paired up with Shashi Kapoor with whom she went on to do eight films. The Kashmir-set romance, however, remains their most famous pairing and influenced other Bollywood love-stories later. Nanda first worked with Dev

was just starting out as an actor. Her other memorable roles include 'Mandir', 'Angarey', 'Ram Laxman', 'Bandi', 'Ittefaq', 'Prayashchit', 'Ahista Ahista', 'Prem Rog' and 'Mazdoor'. In the beginning, Nanda mostly excelled as a supporting star but eventually she found great acceptance and popularity as a lead heroine. The title of 'Choti Bahen' stuck with her in real life too.-PTI

Kumar further said that currently almost 70 per cent of expat professionals hiring is taking place at a higher level and 30 per cent at mid or lower levels. "What is most interesting to notice in India is that it is not just multinational companies or the large Indian organizations that are employing expats. Some of the medium-sized enterprises with ambitious plans have also been hiring expats in a bid to achieve their goals," Kumar said. According to data provided by MyHiringClub.com, around 39,000 expats (not including Indian origin people) are working in India. Among them about 3,700 are from United States of America (USA). In 2012, the number of expats working in India was at a peak with more than 49,000 professionals. PTI

Jaswant files papers from Barmer, ridicules Modi BARMER: Defying the party, Jaswant Singh has filed his nomination from Barmer Lok Sabha constituency as an Independent and launched a veiled attack on Narendra Modi saying the "NamoNamo tamasha" and the decisionmaking process in BJP shows the "arrogance" of the Emergency era. He also attacked party president Rajnath Singh and Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, accusing them of "betraying" him and fielding a defector from Congress Col Sonaram Chaudhury. "The Namo-Namo tamasha, the decision-making process (in BJP) reminds me of 1975. There is more of arrogance and less of taking everyone along," Singh told a press conference shortly after he filed four sets of nomination papers before the collector, who is also the returning officer. After defying the party which decided not to give him ticket from Barmer, the 76-year-old leader said it was for the party to decide whether he should continue in it or not. "They can sack me," he said. Sounding bitter, Singh, one of the founders of BJP, said the denial of ticket was a "huge humiliation" for workers in the constituency. "I was informed by Rajnath Singh over telephone it

(ticket from Barmer) is not possible," he said. "Who are the people who have hurt you? One is the BJP President who has hit me for the second time. The conspiracy was hatched by Vasundhara Raje. "I say with regret and pain that these two persons have sort of betrayed me, cheated me. The betrayal is not with Jaswant Singh alone but with BJP's principles and ideologies," he said while addressing his supporters after filing the nomination. As BJP president in 2009, Rajnath Singh had expelled him from the party in a manner in which even a "peon" is not sacked, Singh said, adding that he got carried away by emotions when he joined back the party.-PTI

Jaswant Singh


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India to pursue visa, tax violation by US School NEW DELHI: India has conveyed to the US its decision to pursue with it at the earliest the alleged violations of tax laws and visa status by some of its staff in American embassy school here which was being probed by the Income Tax department. "We have conveyed to the US that we want to pursue at the earliest the issue of alleged violation of tax and the visa status by some its staff in American embassy school here at the Consular-level forum," the Spokesperson in the External Affairs Ministry said. This was conveyed to the US Assistant Secretary of State during her recent visit to India. Income Tax department is probing into alleged tax violations after reports that several teachers at the American Embassy school were working "illegally", in violation of both tax laws and their visa status. The government has earlier indicated that these violations were serious and it was likely to initiate action in this regard. The I-T department's exemp-

tion wing, which deals with tax related issues pertaining to charitable institutions and those bodies which have been granted I-T waiver, has begun a probe into alleged violation of Indian tax laws and once the preliminary informa-

Income Tax department is probing into alleged tax violations after reports that several teachers at the American Embassy school were working "illegally", in violation of both tax laws and their visa status tion is gathered, the tax department would be taking a view on issuing notices to the authorities concerned, sources have said. However, MEA is still awaiting response on the information

sought in December last year on visa and other details of all the teachers at these schools and their salaries along with the bank account details of their Indian staff members. India had, in 1973, granted "tax exempted status" to 16 teachers of the school. However, as per information available with the government, there were many more teachers who were working but not shown as such. However, in response, the US State Department said the school "is not run by the Embassy (and) only about a third of the students there are American". India initiated a slew of initiatives in retaliation against the arrest and strip-search of its senior diplomat Devyani Khobragade, a 39-year-old 1999-batch IFS officer, on December 12 in New York on charges of visa fraud. Though, the first indictment against her was rejected by the US Court, the prosecutors have filed a second indictment in the matter earlier this month. -PTI

ISI sanctioned Indian Embassy attack in Kabul WASHINGTON: The deadly 2008 terror attack on the Indian Embassy in Kabul was sanctioned and monitored by senior officials of Pakistan's ISI, according to a new book. The suicide car bomb attack on the Indian Embassy in Kabul on July 7, 2008 left 58 people - including two top Indian officials - killed and over 140 injured. "The embassy bombing was no operation by rogue ISI agents acting on their own. It was sanctioned and monitored by the most senior officials in Pakistani intelligence," wrote senior journalist Carlotta Gall in her latest book 'The Wrong Enemy: America in Afghanistan 2001-2004', to be out next month. The then Bush Administration, that received advance intelligence information, mainly through intercepts of phone calls, could not prevent the deadly attack, wrote Gall, one of the only women Western reporters on the ground in Afghanistan after 9/11 who covered the Af-Pak conflict for 10 years. The bombing of the Indian Embassy in Kabul "revealed the clearest evidence of ISI complicity in its planning and execution",

according to excerpts from the book provided to PTI. "American and Afghan surveillance intercepted phone calls from ISI officials in Pakistan and heard them planning the attack with the militants in Kabul in the days leading up to the bombing. At the time, intelligence officials monitor-

"The number he had called belonged to a high-level ISI official in Peshawar. The official had sufficient seniority that he reported directly to ISI headquarters in Islamabad ing the calls did not know what was being planned, but the involvement of a high-level official in promoting a terrorist attack was clear. "The evidence was so damning that the Bush administration dispatched the deputy chief of the CIA, Stephen Kappes, to Islamabad to remonstrate with the

Pakistanis. The bomber struck, however, before Kappes reached Pakistan," she said. "Investigators found the bomber's cell phone in the wreckage of his exploded car. They tracked down his collaborator in Kabul, the man who had provided the logistics for the attack. That facilitator, an Afghan, had been in direct contact with Pakistan by telephone," Gall wrote. "The number he had called belonged to a high-level ISI official in Peshawar. The official had sufficient seniority that he reported directly to ISI headquarters in Islamabad. The embassy bombing was no operation by rogue ISI agents acting on their own. It was sanctioned and monitored by the most senior officials in Pakistani intelligence," she claimed in her book, running into more than 300 pages. While Pakistan has repeatedly denied its involvement in the Indian Embassy attack, several mainstream US newspapers, including The New York Times, and the governments of India and Afghanistan have accused the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) of being behind the attack. -PTI

Indians, a rising force in US politics: Bera WASHINGTON: Indian and South Asian Americans are increasingly becoming a force in the US political system, Congressman Ami Bera has said. "Indian and South Asian Americans have become integral to the fabric of American life, and are becoming an increasing force in America's political system," Bera said addressing the teenage participants at South Asian Youth Action (SAYA!) in New York this weekend. In his interaction Bera, the third ever and the only Indian-American lawmaker in the current Congress, talked to them about the American political process and the importance of public service. "It's so important for our young people to know that they can dream big and make a difference in their own communities, and organizations like SAYA! help them do that. I may be the only Indian and South Asian American in Congress right now, but in the years to come I hope to see many

more in all levels and branches of government," he said. "As a first-generation Indian American born and raised in California, I got where I am largely

Ami Bera

because of the Indian Americans of my parent's generation who paved the way for me," Bera said. SAYA! is the secular youth development organization dedicated to South Asian American youth. Their mission is to create opportunities for South Asian American youth to realize their fullest potential. -PTI

Manju Goel loses Congressional bid WASHINGTON: Indian-Ameri- worked hard. I'm just happy that can Manju Goel has lost her bid our message got out there and to seek Republican party nomina- resonated with the people," he tion to run for a seat in the US said after the victory. Congress. Goel immigrated from India in Goel, 48, lost to a political new- the 1980s. Among others she was comer Larry endorsed by Kaifesh, 46, the former who was deHouse of Repclared winner resentatives with 71 per Speaker, Newt cent of the Gingrich, and votes in ReThe Chicago publican priTribune. mary held in IlDuring her linois this campaign was week. publicly es"It feels pousing the degreat," said velopment Kaifesh, a colomodel of nel in the MaGujarat Chief rine Corps ReMinister Manju Goel serve, who Narendra played up his Modi. military service and commitment As a Republican, Goel ran a to rein in the national debt as he campaign in strong opposition of drew support from several Repub- Obamacare, vowing to do all she lican township organizations. could to repeal the controversial "We worked long and we healthcare legislation. -PTI


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UK honors WW II heroine Noor Inayat Khan LONDON: In a rare honor, and an American mother, Ora Ray ond World War. Britain's Royal Mail has issued a Baker. The couple had met in the In London, Noor joined the postage stamp of Noor Inayat Ramakrishna Mission ashram in Women's Auxiliary Air Force and Khan, the Indian-origin World America. was later recruited for the Special War II heroine, who was a descenHazrat Inayat Khan was a Sufi Operations Executive, a secret ordant of Tipu Sultan. preacher and musician and trav- ganization started by Prime MinThe stamp - part of a set of 10 eled the world taking Sufism to the ister Winston Churchill. stamps in their 'ReShe was the first markable Lives' series woman radio operator - honors Noor in the to be flown undercover centenary year of her to Paris and worked birth. from there for three Others honored in months under the code the set include actor name Madeleine. Sir Alec Guinness and However she was the poet Dylan Thobetrayed, arrested and mas. finally executed in "I am delighted that Dachau concentration Royal Mail has comcamp in Nazi Germany. memorated Noor with Though she was tora stamp," said tured and interrogated, Shrabani Basu, author she revealed nothing, of 'Spy Princess: The not even her real name. Life of Noor Inayat Her last word as they Khan' and the chair of shot her was "Liberte!" the Noor Inayat Khan (Liberty). She was only Memorial Trust. 30. "It will ensure that Noor was awarded The Royal Mail stamp in memory of Noor-un-Nisa Inayat Khan her sacrifice and bravthe highest honor, the ery will not be forgotGeorge Cross, by Britten," she said. west. He was a descendant of ain. France awarded her the Croix Basu campaigned for a memo- Tipu Sultan, the famous 18th-cen- de Guerre. rial for Noor which was unveiled tury ruler of the kingdom of In 2006, President Pranab in November 2012 by Britain's Mysore. Mukherjee, the then defense minPrincess Anne. Noor was brought up in Paris ister, paid an official visit to Noor's Noor Inayat Khan was born in and the family moved to London family house outside Paris and Moscow in January 1914 to an when Paris was occupied by the described her bravery and sacriIndian father, Hazrat Inayat Khan Germans in 1940 during the Sec- fice as "inspirational". -PTI

Shrien Dewani to be extradited to South Africa JOHANNESBURG/LONDON: A 33-year-old Indian- origin British businessman, accused of plotting the murder of his Indo-Swedish wife on their honeymoon in Cape Town, will be extradited from the UK on April 7, the South African government has said. Shrien Dewani has been fighting a return to South Africa to face the charges, which he denies, over the death of his wife Anni, 28, in November 2010. "The extradition process is now being handled by South African government through the justice department," South African Justice Ministry spokesperson Mthunzi Mhaga said. He said the department was liaising with the office of the Home Secretary in Britain to facilitate the extradition. "We are working tirelessly to ensure that his return to our

shores brings to finality this protracted legal process." Mhaga could not confirm the day Dewani was expected to arrive in the country, South African Press Association (SAPA) news agency reported.

Shrien Dewani

However, the BBC reported that Dewani is expected to leave London and arrive in Cape Town on April 8.

Dewani had lost his final appeal against extradition at the start of March which triggered a 28-day period during which he must be extradited. His legal team had wanted the appeal to be heard in the highest court in the land - the Supreme Court - but this was refused by a panel of judges. The businessman is being compulsorily detained under the Mental Health Act after being diagnosed as suffering from severe depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. In January, the High Court ruled it would not be "unjust and oppressive" to extradite Dewani providing that assurances were received from South Africa about the length of time he would be kept in the country without trial. Those assurances have been given, the report said.-PTI

AAP welcomes EC's order on gas price NEW DELHI: Aam Aadmi Party Alleging that the UPA governhas welcomed the Election ment has violated the Model Code Commission's direction to the of Conduct, AAP said the EC's central government to defer till decision within four days of the elections the decision to double party's National Convenor sendnatural gas prices from April 1, ing a letter to it shows that the saying it "comes as a major relief move was in a hurry to benefit RIL. for the common man". AAP said the gas pricing is"The EC's decision comes as a sue has exposed the "nexus" bemajor relief for the common man who would otherwise have suf- "The EC's decision comes as fered under the impact of the hike in transpor- a major relief for the comtation and fertilizer mon man who would othercosts, which would have also pushed up wise have suffered under the prices of all essential commodities," said the impact of the hike� a statement issued by the party. tween RIL and Congress and BJP. "AAP congratulates the people "The gas pricing the issue has of the country for having sup- not only exposed the Congress ported the party stand on the is- but also the BJP and particularly sue," the statement reads. its prime ministerial candidate This "dishonest" decision of Narendra Modi who has been the UPA government was solely maintaining a mysterious silence aimed at providing huge undue on this crucial issue... In the combenefits to RIL and would have ing days AAP will further expose resulted in a loss of more than Rs the nexus between RIL and Con54,500 crore to the national exche- gress-BJP combine," the statequer, the statement reads. ment reads. -PTI

Singapore deports Indian, probing another SINGAPORE: Singapore authorities have deported an Indianorigin man for radicalizing and helping a compatriot with going to strife-torn Syria and have launched a probe into his journey "with the intention to undertake violence" there. The Ministry of Home Affairs has investigated and deported a Singaporean of Indian-origin, Gul Mohamed Maracachi Maraicar, for radicalizing Haja Fakkurudeen Usman Ali (37) and helping him in

his plans to go to Syria. Gul, 37, a Singapore permanent resident and had worked as a system analyst. Ali, who worked as a supermarket manager and took Singapore's citizenship in 2008, allegedly left the country last November to fight against the forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar alAssad, the Ministry said. Officials were informed of his trip by a citizen, once he left Singapore.-PTI


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Missing Malaysian plane crashed with no survivors KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airlines jet with 239 people on board, including five Indians, missing for 17 days crashed in the southern Indian Ocean with no survivors and their families have been informed, Prime Minister

The announcement came on the fifth day of an international search effort in the southern Indian Ocean, with Australian and Chinese planes reporting spotting of several floating objects, about 2,500 km west of Perth.

Malaysias Prime Minister Najib Razak speaks during the press conference for the missing Malaysia Airline, MH370 at Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, March 24

Najib Razak stated, citing new satellite data. "With deep sadness and regret that I must inform you that, according to this new data, flight MH370 ended in the southern Indian Ocean," a grim-faced Najib told a specially convened press conference.

There is no official word yet on the wreckage of the Boeing 777200 that went missing on March 8. Based on new analysis UK's Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) and Inmarsat, the British company that provided satellite data, "we have concluded that MH370 flew along the southern

corridor, and that its last position was in the middle of the Indian Ocean, west of Perth," he said. "This is a remote location, far from any possible landing sites." "We share this information out of a commitment to openness and respect for the families, two principles guiding this investigation," he said. He said Malaysia Airlines officials have already spoken to the families of the passengers and crew to inform them of the new development. "I urge the media to respect their privacy, and to allow them the space they need at this difficult time." His announcement came 17 days after the Beijing-bound plane with 239 people, including five Indians, on board disappeared mysteriously from radar screens, one hour after taking off from Kuala Lumpur. The list of passengers on board included 154 Chinese, 38 Malaysians, 7 Indonesians, 6 Australians, 5 Indians, 4 Americans and 2 Canadians. Indians, including three from one family, were identified as Chetna Kolekar, 55, Swanand Kolekar, 23, Vinod Kolekar, 59, Chandrika Sharma, 51, and Kranti Shirsatha, 44.

Meanwhile, an Australian ship was trying to retrieve objects located in the area earlier in the day. Two objects - the first grey or green and circular and the second orange and rectangular - located by an Australian P3 Orion aircraft in the area, Australian Premier

laysia Airlines and all Malaysians, our prayers go out to all the loved ones of the 226 passengers and of our 13 friends and colleagues at this enormously painful time." "We know there are no words that we or anyone else can say which can ease your pain. We will

A relative of one of the Chinese passengers aboard the Malaysia Airlines, MH370 grieves after being told of the latest news in Beijing, China, March 24

Tony Abbott said. A Chinese Ilyushin-76 plane reported spotting "white and square" objects in the same location. Malaysia Airlines in a statement said, "We humbly offer our sincere thoughts, prayers and condolences to everyone affected by this tragedy." "On behalf of all of us at Ma-

continue to provide assistance and support to you, as we have done since MH370 first disappeared in the early hours of 8 March, while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing," it said. The firm said the ongoing multinational search operation will continue, as authorities seek answers to the questions which remain.-PTI

BRIC countries oppose G-20 ban on Putin

India warns women workers in Saudi against strike

'IM head Akhtar's arrest huge success for India'

NEW DELHI: India, Brazil, Hague, Netherlands. China and South Africa have opExternal Affairs Minister Salman posed any restrictions on partici- Khurshid represented India. Forpation of Russian President eign Ministers of China Wang Yi Vladimir Putin at the G-20 summit and his Russian counterpart in Australia later this year in the Sergey Lavrov were also present. wake of Russia annexing Crimea After Russia took over Crimea from Ukraine. from Ukraine, Bishop had said The BRICS (Brazil, Russia, In- Putin could be banned from travdia, China and South Africa) countries expressed concern over “The custodianship of the Australian Foreign G20 belongs to all Minister Julie Bishop's member-states equally and comment that Putin could be barred from no one member-state can attending the G 20 Sum- unilaterally determine its mit in November. nature and character," the "The Ministers noted with concern the BRICS said in a statement recent media statement on the forthcoming G20 Summit eling to Australia for the G20 sumto be held in Brisbane in Novem- mit while supporting the stand of ber 2014. The custodianship of EU and the US in attacking Rusthe G20 belongs to all member- sia on the issue. states equally and no one memUS President Barack Obama ber-state can unilaterally deter- has already vowed to punish mine its nature and character," the Moscow for annexing Crimea. BRICS said in a statement. India has already made it clear The Ministers of BRICS coun- that it will not support any "unitries met on the sidelines of the lateral measures" against Russian Nuclear Security Summit in The government.-PTI

RIYADH: India has warned its nationals in Saudi Arabia against nefarious attempts by "self-styled social workers" to instigate Indian women workers to go on a strike. Activities of such anti-social elements and illegal agents spoil the goodwill that exists for Indians in Saudi Arabia, the Indian Embassy in Riyadh said. "It has come to the notice of the Embassy that some selfstyled social workers and illegal agents have been instigating some Indian female workers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to go on strike. These illegal agents have also found to have circulated reports on the strike through social media trying to get it published," the embassy said in a statement. According to the embassy, this is the same group of illegal agents who were found earlier instigating Indian workers to make negative statements casting aspersions on the government of Saudi Arabia and uploading them on social media. -PTI

NEW DELHI: The arrest of top against terror is yielding positive Indian Mujahideen terrorist results," he said. Tehseen Akhtar was a "huge sucTehseen, who was blamed for cess" for the country's war a number of terror attacks, has against terror, Minister of State for been arrested by the Special Cell Home R P N Singh has said. of Delhi Police. "Tehseen is one of the most His arrest came days after Delhi wanted terrorPolice nabbed ists in India. It another top IM is a huge sucoperative Zia cess in India's Ur Rehman war against alias Waqas terror. The from Ajmer in Delhi Police arRajasthan rested him along with along the three of his asIndo-Nepal sociates. border," Singh Akhtar was told PTI. heading the The Minisbanned outfit ter said after the arrest Akhtar's interof its corogation has f o u n d e r begun and A h m a d Tehseen Akhtar only after his Siddhibappa questioning Zarar alias the details of the IM's network, Yasin Bhatkal along the Indotheir plan and his involvement in Nepal border last year. various terror strikes would be With the arrest of Tehseen, alknown. most the entire top leadership of "The terrorists' arrest shows IM has been nabbed by the pothat the UPA government's fight lice. -PTI


10 India Post

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March 28, 2014

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Indian languages official subjects in S African schools JOHANNESBURG: Nearly two decades after Indian languages were removed from the curriculum in South African state-run schools, Hindi, Tamil, Gujarati, Telugu and Urdu are to be reinstated following pleas from the 1.4 million strong Indian-origin people in the country. The languages will at first be offered as an optional third language for learners only in KwaZulu-Natal province, where about 70 per cent of the Indian-origin population resides. The provincial Head of the Education Department Nkosinathi Sishi confirmed in a circular to schools that they could offer

what it refers to as Eastern languages, because Arabic is also offered alongside the Indian languages. Although some schools have been running classes in Indian languages, it had not been part of the official government-approved curriculum. Now classes will be recognized as official subjects up to matric level, the final year of the schooling system in the country. But the subjects will only be offered at schools where the number of learners makes it a viable option to hire specialist teachers in the language concerned.

Ram Maharaj, chairman of the National Council for Eastern Languages, said he was elated by the decision. "I first started addressing this with the Education authorities in 2001 to ensure the survival of our mother tongues amid the growing westernization of our youth," Maharaj said. "I am hugely relived that they have finally acceded to this request. While we would like to see this option being available at all schools in South Africa, this is a start which I am sure will grow as time goes on," he said. Maharaj made a plea to parents to en-

courage their children to take up the third language option. -PTI

Young being indoctrinated into 'jihad' in Pak NEW DELHI: Alleged Indian Mujahideen terrorist Zia Ur Rehman alias Waqas, who was arrested by the Special Cell of Delhi Police, has further shed light on how innocent youths as young as 15 years are indoctrinated into 'jihad' at terror camps in Pakistan. According to a senior police official associated with interrogation, in 2009, Waqas came in contact with one Taj Mohammed through some newspaper advertisement. He used to collect donations on behalf of Jamaat-UdDawa, the front organization for LeT. "He told Mohammed that he wanted to go to Kashmir and fight. To test his interest, Mohammed turned him down twice but as he insisted, Mohammed arranged for Rehman's training at the Naushera camp," the official said. Here along with 20-25 youth, all between the age of 15 to 20 years he started the 21day training called 'Daura-e-Aam'. Here, one Abu Bakar, Abdulla, Azhar, Naeem were their instructors while overall head was one Abu Manzur, he said. Waqas says that it was a rigorous training program which started at 5:30 in the morning and continued till 5:00 in the evening. "It started with morning prayers and physical training exercises. Breakfast was given at 8:00 which was followed by religious classes. This was followed by training of using weapon including AK-47, INSAS, G-2 gun and pistols. There was lunch break between 12 to 2 pm after which they were taught firing," the official said. After completing this, he wanted to do more following which one Abdur Rehman of JeM arranged for his training at a camp situated in Waziristan. Federally Administered Tribal Area (FATA), where he received intensive training in arms and ammunition. Here he got a 25-day training known as 'Zuhaib', where he got intensive training in handling of arms and ammunitions. He then jumped on to the next level where only a select few could reach. Here he got specialized 10-day training in preparation of IEDs, through Hydrogen Peroxide (liquid form), Potassium Chloride and Ammonium Nitrate. "He also did ten-day training in electronic circuit making under one Ahmed Bhai who taught him to prepare six kinds of circuits," the official said. After completing the training, Rehman directed Waqas to reach Karachi and stay at a hotel. Later Riyaz Bhatkal met him identifying himself as Javed who asked him to go to Kathmandu. From Pakistan, Waqas had reached Kathmandu along with Asadullah Akhtar alias Haddi (arrested with Yasin Bhatkal) in September 2010 and was received by Tehseen Akhtar alias Monu, the current chief of Indian Mujahideen after the arrest of Bhatkal.-PTI


Horoscope

March 28, 2014

India Post

11

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Your Weekly Future by Pandit Parashar

MARCH 28 TH - APRIL 3 RD , 2014 (March 21 to April 20)

M

ind will be little restless as some of you may find yourself suddenly working in a hostile environment and start looking for opportunities outside. A female could be the root cause of trouble at work. Money wise you will continue to stay in comfort zone. It will be better to dispose off money making stocks and wait.

(September 23 to October 22)

A

new association is on the horizon and it will be lucky in long terms. You will have a great opportunity to make some extra money this week. You will also make final payment on several bills. Mind will be lot balanced and you will take all decisions with a calm mind. Business trip will be an instant success.

(October 23 to November 22)

(April 21 to May 20)

V

alue of your assets and stocks recently purchased will escalate considerably. Avoid taking any hasty decisions about ca reer and do not sign any business contract in a hurry unless you like all terms. You may have your eyes set on a nice piece of property. Bachelors will be introduced to another professional by a friend.

R

unning around will not go waste. Bachelors will receive a very nice proposal through another relative this week. You may take a short trip to another state on a very short notice. Value of your stocks will appreciate and it will be better to hold on to them. You may be in market to replace one of your cars.

(November 23 to December 22)

(May 21 to June 20)

Y

ou will continue exploring the opportunity to start a new venture in partnership with an old friend. Things will get slightly relaxed at work and boss will make the necessary recommendations. A clear victory in legal matters possible. You may miss some one who was too close in the past and may try to find him.

Y

ou will be again fortunate in all money matters. Stocks and lottery can be beneficial. Boss will be pleased with your perfor mance and may recommend your promotion. You may visit an old friend or a close relative this weekend to attend a big get together. You will also purchase some nice cloths for your self.

(June 21 to July 22)

Y

ou will benefit from some one with lots of political connections. It will be better to dispose off money making stocks and wait another week to buy them back. Spouse may buy some fine art or decorative item for the house. Expenses towards children will increase. An old health issue could flare up again.

(December 22 to January 19)

P

resence of Mars in ninth is slightly alarming for finances. Unexpected expenses may crop up from every where and you may start charging heavily on your Cards. Some of you may start some kind of loan process also this week. Avoid too much hot or spicy food. You may invite few friends at your place this weekend.

(July 23 to August 22)

L

uck is definitely on your side. You will be very fortunate with money this week. You will have more than one chance to make some fast bucks. New contract will reduce the liability and will come on easy terms. A female will make some unreasonable demands, watch out. Some of you will be getting ready for upcoming trip.

(January 20 to February 18)

Y

ou may keep pouring more money into a project. Keep an eye on your blood pressure and try to play safe when using a ladder this week to fix something. It's a promising week for job seekers. Do not be in a rush to accept this one as another better offer is only a week away. Children will plan a small trip.

(August 23 to September 22)

T

hings will be kind of slow this week. You will need to make several attempts to get the things done. Money wise you will stay comfortable unless you make new commitments and stretch your limits. You may visit a holy place with family this week. An old friend will call and invite you to a get together at his place.

PANDIT PARASHAR, CEO & COO Astro Scan USA is also available for individual consultations. He can be reached at: parashar@parashar.com

(February 19 to March 20)

I

t will a very interesting week. Opportunities will come from nowhere. Good things you never dreamed about can happen. An influential person will become close friend and give some very practical and useful leads. On the other hand expenses will not leave you alone. You will buy some nice items for the house.

510-886-4370 www.parashar.com


Tech News India to launch navigational satellite IRNSS 1-B CHENNAI: India's latest navigational satellite IRNSS 1-B would be launched from Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota, some 100 km from here, on April 4. "The launch of IRNSS 1-B from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre on board PSLV C-24 rocket is scheduled at 5.14 pm on April 4," ISRO sources said. While a 52-hour countdown for the launch on April 4 would commence on April 2, a rehearsal for the launch would be held on March 29, they said. IRNSS 1-B is the second of seven satellites planned for Indian Regional Navigational Satellite System (IRNSS), whose applications include terrestrial and marine navigation, disaster management, vehicle tracking and fleet management.-PTI

New tech to detect dangerous materials from afar WASHINGTON: Infrared technology can help spot from afar whether a site is being used to make nuclear weapons, scientists say. Researchers from the Brigham Young University have developed a model that precisely characterizes the material in each pixel of an image taken from a long-wave infrared camera. The method could help detect and describe potentially dangerous materials from a distance, researchers said. The project was funded by the US National Nuclear Security Administration through a grant awarded to BYU engineering professor Gustavious Williams. -PTI

Audi to sell A3 Sedan in India from mid-2014 INGOLSTAD, Germany: German luxury auto brand Audi will begin selling its premium A3 Sedan in India from middle of the year and the much-awaited car will be rolled out from the company's production facility in Aurangabad. The brand with the four rings said it has decided to assemble A3 in India from the launch stage itself expecting that it will become a driver of growth for the company. India will be among very few countries where the luxury sedan will be produced locally. The sale of A3 Sedan has started in only a few countries in Europe. It will be launched in the US next month. -PTI

TechBiz 12 India Post

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Hardip Goindi, Executive Vice President of Piaggio India Pvt. Ltd launching the Piaggio New ape’ City Compact Diesel 3 Wheeler in Hyderabad on March 25

March 28, 2014

Russia offers India crude oil supplies, stakes in blocks NEW DELHI: As the US and Europe try to isolate Moscow over its action in Crimea, Russian President Vladimir Putin's trusted lieutenant Igor Sechin courted top Indian officials, offering to ship its vast crude oil reserves and stakes in oil and gas acreages. Sechin, who heads Rosneft, Russia's biggest oil company, led a delegation of about two-dozen officials to meet Oil Secretary Saurabh Chandra seeking to expand ties with New Delhi. "India is a very important country for Russia. We have a very efficiently run project with ONGC...now we want to expand our cooperation," Sechin told PTI after the meeting. The Russian state oil major offered Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) a stake in nine offshore oil and gas blocks in the Barents Sea and one in the Black Sea. "We are (also) looking at supplying crude oil to Indian refineries," he said, adding that Rosneft produces 200 million tons of crude oil a year. Moscow is courting India to counter moves by the US and Europe to isolate it for annexing Crimea from Ukraine. Sechin was in Tokyo last week to broaden ties with Japan. India does not have a firm contract to import crude oil from Russia. It gets a small volume once in a while from ONGC's Sakhalin-1 project in Far East Russia. Indian officials said logistics need to be worked out to import oil from Rosneft's fields. "We may have to lay some pipelines to transport the crude. We have decided to form a working group to study how this can progress," an official said. Of the blocks offered in the Barents Sea, OVL found five were not lucrative. Of the remaining four, it would like to participate in two. It will decide on the other two once Rosneft makes available data by June. Rosneft had previously offered ONGC a stake in the Magadan 2 and Magadan 3 exploration blocks in the northern part of the Sea of

per cent stake in the Sakhalin-1 oil and gas field in the Russian Pacific Ocean. Rosneft has a similar stake in the project, which is operated by Exxon Mobil. OVL had bought Imperial Energy, which has fields in Siberia, for USD 2.1 billion in January 2009. It is keen to get a foothold in the Arctic projects and expand in Siberia and Far Igor Sechin East Russia. " A t present, OVL The Russian state oil major offered is studying Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) the prelimia stake in nine offshore oil and gas nary data provided by blocks in the Barents Sea and one Rosneft for in the Black Sea. identifying the preferred we are talking about expanding our blocks for participation with Rosneft," an Indian official said. cooperation," Sechin said. Oil Minister M Veerapa Moily ONGC Videsh Ltd, the overseas arm of the state explorer, has a 20 stated in December that Rosneft Okhotsk, which the Indian firm is studying. "We have a very efficient project with ONGC in Sakhalin-I. It is functioning very well. Now

had offered OVL a stake in the Magadan 2 and Magadan 3 exploration blocks in the northern part of the Sea of Okhotsk in eastern Russia. The Sea of Okhotsk is bound by mainland Russia in the west and north, by the Kamchatka-Kuril peninsula towards the east and by north-east Hokkaido (Japan) to the south. Rosneft had a couple of years back got a license to explore five areas in the Sea of Okhotsk Magadan 1, 2 and 3, Lisyansky and Kashevarovsky. The area is estimated to hold 2.8 billion tons of oil and oil equivalent natural gas. Sources said OVL had in May 2012 written to Rosneft expressing interest in taking a stake in oil and gas blocks in the Russia's Arctic region, which have recently been given out to US major Exxon Mobil, Italian giant ENI and Norway's Statoil for exploration. The Russian firm had also recently roped in Statoil for four new joint ventures, including exploring the Magadan 1, Lisyansky and Kashevarovsky blocks that have recoverable reserves of 1.4 billion tonnes. -PTI

Corruption being blown out of proportion: Pitroda BANGALORE: Chairman of National Innovation Council Sam Pitroda feels that corruption has become a way of life in Indian society and it was being blown out of proportion. "I think lot of this corruption is blown out of proportion. First of all, let me tell you - not that I like corruption, don't get me wrong, corruption is a way of life in our society," Pitroda told reporters replying to a question on corruption being a big issue for UPA government today. Speaking at "Meet the Press", organized by the Bangalore

Sam Pitroda

Press Club and the Reporters Guild of Bangalore, he said that it was not that any party was corrupt or not, but everybody in the society was corrupt. "Business is corrupt, teachers are corrupt, doctors are corrupt, politicians are corrupt, everybody is corrupt. Not just the Indian society is corrupt, there is corruption in US but it is sophisticated. As it is sophisticated, you and I don't get affected directly. There is corruption in China, Japan, Russia - so it has become a way of life, not that I like it. Cont’d on page 14


TechBiz Post

March 28, 2014

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2 Indian entrepreneurs recognized by Schwab NEW YORK: As many as 37 social entrepreneurs including two Indians have been recognized by the Schwab Foundation as Social Entrepreneurs of the Year 2014. The two Indian awardees are Shelly Batra of Operation ASHA and Chetna Vijay Sinha of Mann Deshi Bank and Mann Deshi Foundation. The 37 social entrepreneurs working in health, education, employment, and the environment were selected in recognition of their innovative approaches and potential for global impact, Schwab Foundation said in a state-

ment. On 'Operation ASHA', Schwab Foundation said it is "tackling the fractured delivery system of Government of India's TB control program through a doorstep TB detection and treatment service that is low-cost, high quality and accessible to the poor." Operation Asha is active in India and Cambodia and the number of direct beneficiaries

Shelly Batra

Diamonds could lead to faster, more powerful computers WASHINGTON: For the first time, scientists have demonstrated that information can flow through a diamond wire, a finding that may pave way for faster and more powerful computers. In the experiment, electrons did

as semiconductors do. The price tag for the diamond wire did not reach engagement ring proportions, Hammel said. It cost a mere USD 100, since it was made of synthetic, rather than natural, diamond. The findings rep-

not flow through diamond as they do in traditional electronics. Rather, they stayed in place and passed along a magnetic effect called "spin" to each other down the wire - like a row of sports spectators doing "the wave." This spin could one day be used to transmit data in computer circuits, researchers said. The experiment carried at The Ohio State University, found that diamond transmits spin better than most metals in which researchers have previously observed the effect. Researchers worldwide are working to develop so-called "spintronics," which could make computers simultaneously faster and more powerful. Diamond has a lot going for it when it comes to spintronics, said lead investigator Chris Hammel. It is hard, transparent, electrically insulating, impervious to environmental contamination, resistant to acids, and doesn't hold heat

resent the first very small step along a very long road that could one day lead to diamond transistors, researchers said.

Electrons attain different spin states according to the direction in which they're spinning - up or down. Hammel's team placed a tiny diamond wire in a magnetic resonance force microscope and detected that the spin states inside the wire varied according to a pattern. The researchers had to seed the wire with nitrogen atoms in order for there to be unpaired electrons that could spin. The wire contained just one nitrogen atom for every three million diamond atoms, but that was enough to enable the wire to carry spin. The physicists were able to observe electron spin on a smaller scale than ever before. They focused the magnetic field in their microscope on individual portions of the wire, and found that they could detect when spin passed through those portions.-PTI

European hackers test their skills in Geneva GENEVA: Hackers from across Europe flocked to Geneva last weekend, not to play havoc with Swiss computers but to test their ethical hacking skills. The sixth annual Insomni'hack ethical hacking competition, organized by IT security firm SCRT, drew over 300 hackers who battled for hours to solve a range of fiendish computer security challenges. "This is essentially to have fun and learn," 32-year-old Oriol Carreras from Barcelona told

AFP. He hopes Seoul and Moscow - hotbeds of hacking on both sides of the law - might be the location for future competitions. Attendees faced "about 30 tests in almost all security areas", SCRT founder Paul Such told AFP. "People have to try to connect to a website without the user's name and password; enter a file without the decoding key; intercept communications and read the content of these communications." -AFP

Chetna Vijay Sinha

stood at 30,500 fully treated patients, the statement said. Mann Deshi Mahila Bank was founded as India's first rural cooperative bank in 1997. Its client base (and membership) is 100 per cent composed of semi-literate or illiterate poor rural women with an average annual income of less than USD 1.5 per day. The number of direct beneficiaries stood at 209,000. "Social entrepreneurs are the driving force behind innovations that improve the quality of life of

individuals around the world, and they represent an integral and dynamic community of the World Economic Forum," Hilde Schwab, Co-Founder and Chairperson, Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship said. The 2014 awardees include: Seiko Adachi & Masue Katayama of Shinko Fukushikai (Japan); Shaikh Saif Al Rashid of JITA (Bangladesh); Richard Barth & Mike Feinberg of KIPP Foundation (USA); Jay Kimmelman and Shannon May of Bridge International Academies (Kenya); Adina Tal of Nalagaat (Israel); Chris Underhill of BasicNeeds (United Kingdom) and Allen Wilcox of VillageReach (Mozambique) among others. The awardees will become part of the broader Schwab Foundation community of social entrepreneurs. The community includes 250 social entrepreneurs from 60 countries. -PTI


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March 28, 2014

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India seeks more Chinese investment BEIJING: India has sought to increase Chinese investments into the country, especially from China's largest business hub Shanghai, to bridge the ballooning USD 35 billion trade deficit. During a meeting with Shanghai Mayor Yang Xiong, Indian Ambassador to China Ashok K Kantha highlighted the potential for expanding and diversifying trade and economic cooperation

between the two neighbors. Kantha also noted the significant role Shanghai plays in expanding the economic ties, a statement issued by the Indian Consulate in the eastern metropolis Shanghai said. China-India bilateral trade dipped to USD 66.5 billion last year and India has been asking China to boost investments to bridge the trade deficit.

Shanghai-based companies have undertaken a number of projects in India and other enterprises should build on this foundation by stepping up their investments, Kantha said. In recent years, Yang said, relations between Shanghai and India had made steady progress and the Shanghai municipal government remains committed to further strengthening its relations with

Intel India to realign workforce to tablet GUWAHATI: Global chip major Intel has said it is shifting its workforce internally in India to areas of growth like tablet and

Internet of Things (IoT) segments from traditional segments like personal computers. The company, which has announced it would trim 5,000 jobs globally this year, will not hire manpower in India in 2014. "Our headcount projection for this year in India is flat. We will not grow our manpower. Instead, we are shifting our manpower internally to areas of growth," Intel India President Kumud Srinivasan told PTI here. The biggest gap lies due to lack of infrastructure and utilization of that infrastructure, she added. "To optimize our resources, we are looking to shift the resources to new areas of growth such as tablet, which experienced rapid increase in last year. IoT is another area that we are increasing our focus," Srinivasan said, adding mobile is another area of growth. The PC penetration in India is just 10 per cent and the same for broadband is 5 per cent, so there is a potential for IoT segment, she added. Stating that consumers have become very gadget-friendly, Srinivasan said India is poised to "jump a leap forward" in the technology market segment. Intel India currently has a total

workforce of around 6,000 people, of which about 70 per cent are engaged in research and development work, she said.

Talking about the domestic market, Srinivasan said: "All emerging markets are seeing

growth for Intel and India is growing a lot. As per our marketing strategy, we are now going to Tier II and Tier III cities. It helps us understand the market and the needs in a better way." The company had said it will invest over USD 120 million in consolidating its existing R&D infrastructure in Bangalore. Earlier in January this year, Intel Corporation had announced plans to trim more than 5,000 jobs from its workforce in 2014 in an effort to boost its earnings, amid waning demand for its personal computer chips. The workforce reduction will be achieved through attrition, buyouts and early retirement offers instead of directly laying off workers. It represented about 5 per cent of the roughly 1,08,000-strong payroll at the end of December 2013. -PTI

Lenovo-IBM server biz deal gets green signal NEW DELHI: Global technology major Lenovo's USD 2.3 billion deal with IBM to acquire the US-based company's low-end server business has received approval from fair trade watchdog CCI. T h e proposed deal, one of the biggest acquisitions by a Chinese firm in the technology space, involves Lenovo Group acquiring x86 server business of technology giant IBM. The deal "is not likely to have appreciable adverse effect on competition in India", the Competition Commission of India (CCI) has ruled.

The proposed transaction also includes the transfer of assets, contracts and employees associated with IBM's x86 server business. In an order dated March 20, CCI said t h a t "Lenovo is not present in the server market in India a n d through the proposed combination, Lenovo will enter as a competitor in the already competitive and dynamic server market in India". "There is no horizontal overlap between Lenovo and IBM in the market of x86 server business in India," it added.-PTI

Indian Ambassador to China Ashok K Kantha meeting with Mayor of Shanghai Yang Xiong

India. Kantha also discussed the series of activities that the Embassy and the Consulates in China plan to organize under the "Glimpses of India" Festival in China this year, which has been declared by

the two sides as the "Year of Friendly Exchanges". The Mayor assured the Indian envoy of full cooperation for the proposed activities in Shanghai, the release said. -PTI

Corruption being blown out of proportion: Pitroda Cont’d from page 12

of communicating, that's what people think and I am just telling, what people tell me." When I tell what we have done - they say we didn't know that, we didn't know this... everybody wants information to be given to them on their lap, he added. When asked whether UPA will come back to power, Pitroda said

But let's not get hung-up on it," he said. Pitroda said that one can't stop doing things just because there was corruption. "If somebody is corrupt, action should be taken... but you can't take 20 year to decide it. Fix it soon, three years or whatever." He stressed on the need to improve the When I tell what we have system slowly and said if somebody has done done - they say we didn't wrong then he should know that, we didn't know pay for it; each one of us has to take this... everybody wants responsibility...so I information to be given to think we will have to work with the system them on their lap we have and slowly and "of course, they will come back. I slowly improve." Pitroda also stated that good think they will win and they will work done by the government was form the government." not being publicized and said "we Pitroda said India's destiny was probably didn't do a good job of going to be decided in this eleccommunicating, explaining to tion and the next decade as "we people." are at a tipping point, we are at To a question as to who was crossroads." accountable for this communicaAdvocating the need for more tion gap, he said "I don't blame and more young people to play anybody, there is no sense in blam- active role in shaping the future ing somebody, everyone has their of India, he said that older people own style; we didn't do a good job were messing up the system.-PTI


March 28, 2014

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India Post 15


Desi News Jitu Mehta sets up Engg. Chair in IIT Mumbai India Post News Service

LOS ANGELES: Dr Jitendra K. Mehta, founder of Group M Engineers in Los Angeles, has just established a chair for over 120K at IIT Mumbai. The Chair is in Structural Engineering and will benefit that department and institution. Mr Mehta selected IIT-Mumbai because this is where he graduated from in 1963. After that Jitu attended University of California at Berkeley and obtained an M.S. degree in structural engineering in January 1965. The exact name of the chair at IIT Mumbai is Jitendra K. & Meena J. Mehta Chair Professor of Structural Engineering. It will initiate new academic programs and consolidate existing programs. Details on page 18

Holi celebrated with gusto at Lake County temple GEETHA PATIL

CHICAGO: It was an affair to remember at Lake County Hindu temple on Sunday March 17 when a cross section of Indian community from practically all parts of India gathered to celebrate Holi a great Hindu festival known also for its play of color and Holika Dahan. The freezing temperature notwithstanding, over 1200 people from all age groups and different Indian communities along with some enthusiastic American students played colors.

COMMUNITY ACROSS AMERICA

Details on page 23

16 India Post

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India Post News Service

MILPITAS, CA: Filled with glitz and glamour, Reena Rai was crowned Miss South Asia 2014 and Puneet Prasad was announced Mr. South Asia 2014 at Spirit Of India's 22nd annual pageant. Over 450 people packed the ballroom at the contest held here on March 8. Beauty queen Rima Fakih, the first Muslim-American to win Miss USA 2010, was revealed as South Asia Magazine's cover girl on the red carpet. Bollywood director Rahul Rawail traveled from Mumbai exclusively for Mr & Miss South Asia 2014 pageant, looking for fresh faces for his upcoming film, "Love Story Again." The contestants took the stage for traditional wear, formal wear and talent categories. In traditional, semi-finalists were seen in elegant wear from India, Afghanistan etc., and in the American formal wear the ladies wore beautiful evening gowns and the men in tuxedos. The talent round showed

Reena Rai being crowned Miss South Asia 2014 with Bollywood director Rahul Rawail and actress Ashwani Bhave. Pics Teofie S. Decierdo at VTM Photography

Mrs India California 2014 title. Rajan Sra was declared Mr India North America 2014 and Amit Keswani won Mr India California 2014. Among the gorgeous semi-finalists, Seepaj Dhaliwal grabbed the Miss India North America 2014

Good response to Share-a-Smile fundraiser Asian Media USA

Details on page 21

March 28, 2014

Glamorous 'Spirit Of India' pageant crowns Reena Rai & Puneet

Details on page 19

CHICAGO: Share-a-Smile held one more of its fundraisers on Friday March 14 at India House Banquet Hall in Schaumburg with a degree of success. Share-a-Smile is a registered non-profit organization with a unique goal to give back to seniors and the less privileged here, back home in India and globally, It was a Masquerade Ball and the night's entertainment music was provided by Hemang Thakkar, Vocalist of "Rhythm of Dreams" Group and Anis Chandani, an accomplished flute player of "Sa Re Ga Ma Pa" fame with three other live-band members.

Telugu associations host Women's Day

Rahul Rawail receiving his Lifetime Achievement Award on the stage (L-R) Elveera Robello Mrs India Global, host Indrani Pal Chaudhari and past Miss South Asia Husna Momand

very energetic performance highlighting dances, singing, and acting skills. Yasma Bahar won Mrs South Asia 2014 title. Yasma charmed the judges with her energetic dance to "Nimbuda" from "Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam." Aparajita Panda became Mrs India North America 2014, and Mili Shah took home the

title and Mehr Bhatti was announced Miss South Asia America 2014. Other title winners were: Veena Gurbani, Miss South Asia USA 2014; Fariba Ghorbani, Miss India California 2014; Shivani Gupta, Miss Teen South Asia 2014; and Trisha Rupani, Miss South Asia California 2014. Music video director Indrani

Pal-Chaudhari was the host of the gala. Indrani's latest music video is Mariah Carey's 'You're Mine'. Indrani has worked with Beyonce, Jay Z, Britney Spears, Kanye West, David Bowie, etc. Jinnder Chohaan, Creator of Mr/Miss/Mrs. South Asia, stated, "I'm impressed with the attractive and talented contestants at this pageant. We've been making celebrities for over twenty-two years now, and I'm glad to see the contestants are more focused and dedicated to the field of being in the entertainment industry. It feels great to be able to give these South Asians mainstream opportunities. Hollywood and Bollywood love beauty pageant titles. It's just an easier way to get into both industries." Miss USA 2010 Rima Fakih, along with costume designer GK Reid and Bollywood actress Ashwani Bhave were honored during The Elite Awards for their exceptional achievement in the entertainment industry. The respected Rahul Rawail was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award 2014. Mehr Bhatti, Fariba Ghorbani, Seepaj Dhaliwal, Veena Gurbani, Shivani Gupta

Yasma Bahar, Aparajita Pande & Mili Shah


March 28, 2014

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India Post 17

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South Asians should eat more greens than grains VIDYA SETHURAMAN India Post News Service

Over 1000 top civic and South Asian community leaders and guests gathered at the Santa Clara Marriott on Saturday, March 23 to celebrate "Scarlet Night," the sixth annual fundraising gala of the South Asian Heart Center at El Camino Hospital. The event topped off the Center's annual goal of raising from ticket sales, individual donations, auction proceeds and corporate sponsorships. Equally important, it raised awareness of just how critical this work has become. Dr Tony Nader, leader of the Worldwide Transcendental Meditation Organization, who delivered the keynote address, spoke about how practicing transcendental mediation everyday can complement our physical well being. The Transcendental Meditation technique is a specific form of mantra meditation developed by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and practiced by over 5 mil-

Manesh Judge, Councilmember Ash Kalra, Ashish Mathur, executive director of South Asian Heart Center, Dr. Cesar Molina, M.D., Medical Director

TM also significantly lowered systolic blood pressure, the top number in a blood pressure reading. Anger control and overall behavioral also improved. Those who entered the study with either high blood pressure or high stress benefited the most from meditation. He also pointed out South Asians' South Asian Heart Center volunteers team unique needs lion people worldwide. when it comes to prevention, emphasizing The meditation practice involves the use the need for a center that focuses on the of a mantra, and is practiced for 15-20 min- particular issues that affect this population. utes twice every day, while sitting with There was a special video presentation by closed eyes. In addition to reducing the risk Padma Bhushan Dr Devi Shetty, eminent of heart attack and stroke by nearly half, cardiologist and Chairman of Narayana

Dr Tony Nader, keynote speaker and Ashish Mathur, executive director of South Asian Heart Center

Hrudayalaya Hospitals. The mission of the South Asian Heart Center at El Camino Hospital is to reduce the high incidence of coronary artery disease among South Asians, and save lives, through a comprehensive, culturally-appropriate program incorporating education, advanced screening, lifestyle changes, and case management, said Ashish Mathur, Executive Director of South Asian Heart center. He said South Asians should try to incorporate more greens in their meal compared to grains and try to exercise for over 40 minutes daily. The mostly vegetarian meal prepared by

Amber India Restaurant's Executive Chef Vittal Shetty illustrated how meals can be brimming with flavorful appeal and nutrition while avoiding unhealthy fats and sugars. Each dish included significant amounts of nutrient-rich vegetables, underlining the message of the day: "Eat more Greens than Grains." "It's hard to express the gratitude and satisfaction those of us who work at the Center feel at seeing the groundswell of support at this event," said Mathur. "It's the realization of a dream, but we cannot take it for granted. There is still so much more to do."


18 India Post

Community Across America

March 28, 2014

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Jitu Mehta sets up Structural Engineering Chair in IIT Mumbai India Post News Service

LOS ANGELES: Dr Jitendra K. Mehta, founder of Group M Engineers in Los Angeles, has just established a chair for over 120K at IIT Mumbai. The Chair is in Structural Engineering and will benefit that department and institution. Mr Mehta selected IIT-Mumbai because this is where he graduated from in 1963. After that Jitu attended University of California at Berkeley and obtained an M.S. degree in structural engineering in January 1965. The exact name of the chair at IIT Mumbai is Jitendra K. & Meena J. Mehta Chair Professor of Structural Engineering. It will initiate new academic programs and consolidate existing programs. It will initiate and provide expert guidance in R&D programs supported by government agencies and by industry. It will improve interaction with industry through consultancy work and continuing education programs. According to the terms, IIT Mumbai

shall identify a suitable person from within IIT Mumbai or from outside, for appointment to the Chair Professorship in accordance with the procedures laid down by the Board of Governors of IIT Mumbai.

Relevant Experience Mr Mehta has over 40 years of structural engineering experience in California. It covers both commercial and residential facilities of many different types. His residential design experience ranges from singlefamily homes to multi-story apartments over concrete parking structures, and mixed-use buildings. His commercial design experience includes shopping centers, offices and large industrial buildings. He has been responsible for the design of more than 2,000 buildings consisting of concrete, post-tensioned concrete, wood, and steel construction. Mr. Mehta has extensive experience in the field of retrofitting existing structures, investigation, and expert testimony.

Dr Jitendra K. Mehta with wife Meena

In the year 1992 Jitu purchased a vacant lot in Chatsworth, Calif. - a Los Angeles suburb - located about 30 miles north-west

of downtown Los Angeles and designed and built his dream home. Jitu has been very active locally in promoting Indian cultural activities such as inviting Indian artisans - poets, authors, musicians, to his home and promoted their work by holding small in-house concerts. Also, in 1981 Jitu was instrumental in starting a Gujarati Association, now known as San Fernando Valley Gujarati Association. In 1999, Jitu along with some of his friends helped establish an endowment at UCLA known as Sardar Patel Award Association which presents a yearly cash award of $ 10,000.00 to the best doctoral dissertation on India at all U.S. universities. The Ph. D. dissertations are reviewed by a team of UCLA professors who are proficient their respective fields. Currently Jitu serves as the president of Sardar Patel Award Association. In 1968 Jitu Married Meena Chokhawala, a niece of then education minister of the State of Gujarat and a former mayor of Surat. They have three children - Manish, Minal and Jatin.


Community Across America

March 28, 2014

India Post 19

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Holi celebrated with gusto at Lake County temple GEETHA PATIL

CHICAGO: It was an affair to remember at Lake County Hindu temple on Sunday March 17 when a cross section of Indian community from practically all parts of India gathered to celebrate Holi a great Hindu festival known also for its play of color and Holika Dahan. The freezing temperature notwithstanding, over 1200 people from all age groups and different Indian communities along with some enthusiastic American students played colors. With a bizare abundance of bright colors, which are astonishing for the eyes, it seemed the world went crazy here. One could see a multi-colored haze in the sky, and a rainbow appeared over it in the sunshine. Loud conversations, bursts of laughter, triumphant screams, and reflective cries were heard from everywhere. Children in color smeared clothing and painted faces gathered in small laughing groups, and then chased each other running around in the open area. Others were dancing to the tunes of DJ and Punjabi Dhol played by Mr Atwal and Ajay Ghai. The crowd was shouting "Holi Hai Bhai Holi Hai; Bura na mano Holi Hai" in a chorus. Holi means

Play of color all around

theme of the dance program was Shri Radha-Krishna Holi Raas that entertained people for more than two hours. The whole event was managed by Neera Dhoom. By 3:00 pm, Holika Dahan was performed by Joshi Ji with traditional rituals and he blessed all the devotees for their colorful and joyful

A group of devotees with Pundit Anil Joshi

Holika Dahan outside the temple

a joyous celebration, seeing bright colors, getting mixed and becoming one. It's a celebration of oneness. By 11:45, Pandit Anil Joshi Ji performed offering of special colorful uttariyas and chunniyas and Gulals to Radha-Krishna, Ram Parivar and Balaji along with all other deities with chanting of different Mantras and Slokas followed by Nevedyam, Archana and Maha Mangalarati. This was followed by a jubilant dance program performed by students of Academy of Kathak Dance run by Kiran Chauhan. The

future and bid them play colors and enjoy the day. Indian traditional Holi delica-

cies with mouthwatering sweets and Mango lassi was offered as a Holi special lunch by the temple Kitchen Committee head Kama Gupta and his dedicated volunteers. President Dr Harsh Kumar gave vote of thanks to all participants and devotees for their fervor and passion for the Holi festival.

Classical Kathak dance performed by Anila Sinha Foundation students led by Ms Kiran

Advance Care and Palliative Care seminar RITU MAHESHWARI India Post News Service

Being able to plan for the taboo subject "End of Life" is critical for South Asian community and their families. Dr Sulochina Lulla, a member of the executive committee of Pallium India-USA, an all-volunteer run Bay Area organization, and other volunteers of Pallium India-USA have been trying to encourage the Indian community to learn all about hospice care, palliative care and Advance Health Care Directives (AHCD), a tool that allows one to put in writing how they want to be

cared for when they are not able to speak for themselves. Dr Sudha Gattupalli, Medical Director for Hospice, Inpatient Palliative Care, and Hospital Medicine at Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara, will be presenting the first of a series of talks on Advance Care Planning, Palliative Care and End of Life/Hospice Care on Sunday, March 30 from 2-4 pm, at Kaiser Permanente Hospital , 710 Lawrence Expressway, Santa Clara (Conference Rooms A1 and A2). If interested in attending, please RSVP Dr. Lulla, Phone: (408) 530-2733 or email: sulolulla@gmail.com


Community Across America

20 India Post

March 28, 2014

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Colors, songs and revelry at Lemont Holi RAGHU BADDI

Cultural program by children

Holika Dahan at Hindu Temple

CHICAGO: The Hindu Temple of Greater Chicago in Lemont, Illinois celebrated one of most lively festivals of the year, that is Holi on Saturday, March 15.

temple by early afternoon to be part of the celebrations. Anticipating big crowds, the temple management opened up four nearby parking lots. Buses were arranged

Play of colors outside the temple

Surprisingly, the weather too cooperated on Saturday with Holi revelers and community members gathering in large numbers at the

to transport people from these parking lots and with Lemont police controlling the flow of traffic on Lemont Road, things hap-

pened in a very orderly fashion. People had a choice to participate in the religious events or the cultural events that were going on at the same time. The cultural program got to a good start at 2 pm in the Rathi Auditorium of the temple conducted by the cultural committee of the temple. The auditorium was filled to capacity with over 600 people that included the participants and others who came to enjoy the program. Tilak Marwaha, the vice-president of the temple addressed the gathering and encouraged the audiences to take active part in all the events of that afternoon. After the cultural program ended, events shifted to the spacious dining hall where Dandiya Raas was held with more than 100 people participating. Men and women, young and old danced with sticks in a circular fashion to the rhythmic beat of the Dhol. As this was going on inside, people

who were outside started the most awaited event of the evening Dulehti - spraying of colors at each other. The Temple brought over 2,000 pounds of colors from

Dandiya by young and old

India for this event and most of it was sold out within couple of hours. There were colors everywhere and the celebrations reached a

Community activist Ajit Gandhi bereaved

S

mt. Chanchalaben Gandhi, mother of Naperville, ILbased financial advisor and a community activist, Ajit Gandhi, passed away at age 84 in Pune, India on Wednesday, March 19 due to old age sickness and complications. She leaves behind two sons, three daughters and several grandchildren. She was immensely loved and respected by all round her because of her caring attitude towards others and strict upbringing. Though highly religious, she respected other faiths and different religious beliefs. May Shree Bhagwaan liberate her soul to reunite in His abode.

peak with everyone dancing to the beat of Holi songs. Everyone enjoyed the delicious snacks that included soft idlis, piping hot samosas, spicy bhelpuri and chai

Smt Chanchalaben Gandhi

garam prepared fresh by the temple kitchen. Food stall was so busy that Prasanna Reddy and Jayanthi Mittur, who were serving the items, had hardly any time to step outside and participate in Dulehti (playing with colors). Later in the evening, before the start of bonfire, Padmini Rao sang a couple of bhajans and priest Shri Ram Parsad of the temple explained the religious significance of Holi to the gathered crowds. Bonfire, called the Holi Dahan was held to close off the celebrations. At times, during the outside festivities, the number of people who attended had swollen to 4,000 plus, according to an estimate. Traffic coordination by Bhima Rao and Satish Amruthur, color set up and sales by Renuka Reddy and Sridhara Tambarahalli, snack sale help to the outside tents coordinated by Lakshmana Mittur, pooja setup by Shashi Kaveti and audio and DJ setup by Vanamurthy Achari contributed in a big way in making this daylong event run ever so smoothly.


Community Across America

March 28, 2014

India Post 21

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Good response to Share-a-Smile fundraiser Asian Media USA

CHICAGO: Share-a-Smile held one more of its fundraisers on Friday March 14 at India House Ban-

tional eye care foundation in India, educare.org and flood relief in Haiti. For the last three years it has identified a senior care home called Sukhdam on the outskirts of New

Lamp lighting by Seniors

quet Hall in Schaumburg with a degree of success.

Delhi as the principal beneficiary of its fund."

Illusionist John Measner (Magic show) with children

Share-a-Smile is a registered non-profit organization with a unique goal to give back to seniors and the less privileged here, back home in India and globally, It was a Masquerade Ball and the night's entertainment music was provided by Hemang Thakkar, Vocalist of "Rhythm of Dreams" Group and Anis Chandani, an accomplished flute player of "Sa Re Ga Ma Pa" fame with three other live-band members. There was a 45 minute magic show by John Measner, an illusionist extraordinaire, who has been entertaining people for the last 25 years. The evening began with a Ganesh Puja with lamps lit by respected seniors Chintan Ahuja, Iswar Das Ahuja, Praveen Ahuja, Mrs Padma Asija, Chani Uppal and Sundari Yanamadula. SASC President Neelam Bhardwaj in her welcoming speech said, "Share-a-Smile Chicago started as a small group in 2008. In the preceding years the fundraisers have contributed to a senior home in India, to welfare projects in Africa, to an interna-

A Slide Show displayed some of the work that has been accomplished both in India and locally. The president of SASC went on to say, "Before we adopted

Sukhdham as our principal charity in 2011, I personally visited and it is difficult to describe its pathetic condition. However in the last three years after we adopted them,

there have been significant improvements in their capacity and living conditions." Cont’d on page 22


Community Across America

22 India Post

March 28, 2014

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Shivalya celebrates Holi on grand scale SHAILAJA KUMAR

fully decorated thalis of colors were brought out and the festival of colors was off to a wonderful beginning. Colors, music, and food added to the celebrations in which over 200 people participated through the course of the evening. Ages 2 to 80 were able to forget the harsh weather and celebrate enthusiastically with nontoxic organic colors. reds, yellows, greens and the ever popular Gulaal

day. Shivalya Hindu Cultural Center was founded in August of 2012 with the purpose of providing a place of worship, celebration and learning for Chicago's Hindu Com-

were soon coloring the air as everyone enjoyed the festival with chants of Holi Hai and Bura Na Mano Holi Hai. The volunteer group led by Shail did a fabulous job in keeping the event organized and safe for everyone. The adults enjoyed

munity. Shivalya has celebrated many festivals with great enthusiasm over the last year and a half. The celebration was the perfect amalgamation of prayers and Masti as the entire Shivalya community rejoiced and came together to make it a huge success.

the delicious meal of Chole Bhature and Samosas and the kids enjoyed pizzas. The volunteers and community stayed afterwards to help clean up to prepare for Satyanarayan Pooja the next

Play of colors at Shivalaya Hindu Temple celebrating Holi Dhuleti

CHICAGO: Shivalya Hindu Cultural Center in Chicago Downtown celebrated Holi on a grand scale on Saturday March 15. With Chicago's brutal winters, it is often difficult to celebrate Holi outdoors due to the frigid tempera-

tures. Shivalya tried to overcome this by inviting its members to celebrate the festival indoors. DISA (Depaul Indian Students Association) joined hands with Shivalya to promote and celebrate Holi this year. The evening began with Chief

Pandit Shri Shastriji leading the prayer in a Holika Dahan. The children were explained the story of Prahlad and the significance of lighting the fire on Holi for Holika Dahan. After the prayers, the beauti-

Good response to Share-a-Smile fundraiser

Congresswomen Duckworth visits gurudwara THAKAR BASATI

PALATINE, CA: Tammy Duckworth, 8th US District Congresswomen from Illinois, USA visited Sikh Religious Society in Palatine, a Chicago suburb, last week. This was her first visit to the Sikh Gurdwara Sahib. Visit was ar-

Share a Smile Executive Board Cont’d from page 21

Neelam Bhardwaj added, "We are happy to announce two new initiatives for this year. Adopt-asenior program whereby, for the cost of $600 per annum, all the needs of a senior citizen in Sukhdam will be taken care of including shelter, food, clothing and medical. 15 seniors have already been sponsored and we are still looking for 13 more adoptions." Treasurer Sunaina Reddy shared a quick financial report. Last year, $11000 was raised at their Annual Fundraiser out of which $10000 was sent to Sukhdam and

$1000 donated to BACOA. In the preceding years, fundraisers contributed to other welfare projects in Africa, Sankara, and an International Eye Care Foundation in India, educare.org and flood relief in Haiti. The prize of a return air ticket to Abu Dhabi was donated by Ethihad Airlines for a raffle draw. A silent auction was held for various items donated to SASC by Saahil Exclusive of Devon Street, Avantique Jewelry, Tanu Singh, Vchilli and Travel Center-Chicago. Past Committee Members were given commemorative certificates for their selfless services. It was

pleasant to watch children and adults dressed beautifully in gowns and black tie with masks on their faces. Committee Members: Sushma Bhanot (Founder Member/Former President), Neelam Bhardwaj (President), Tina Khurana (VicePresident), Sunaina Reddy (Treasurer), Deepa Bharaj (Secretary), Meenakshi Mehta (Executive Committee Member), Vandana Walia (Executive Committee Member), Dipti Thakar(Executive Committee Member), Rajni Asija (Executive Committee Member), Priyanka Sublok (Executive Committee Member)

ranged by Thakar S Basati, Executive Director Palatine Township Democrats. She was greeted with a flower bouquet by the Sangat members and given a tour of Langar Hall, kitchen and Children's Sunday School.

Tammy Duckworth at Sikh Gurudwara

Cont’d on page 23


Community Across America

March 28, 2014

India Post 23

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Telugu associations host Women's Day Asian Media USA

CHICAGO: International

with American Telugu Association (ATA) on March 15 at the Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites, Carol Stream,

event which raised awareness about important issues such as women's mental health, nutrition

Group of women attendees at Telugu Association Women's Day celebration

Women's Day celebrations were organized by Telugu Association of Greater Chicago (TAGC) jointly

a northwest suburb of Chicago. Over 250 women of Telugu origin participated in this unique

Condolence meeting for Khushwant Singh

S

ikh community leaders in Chicagoland have organized a condolence meeting in Palatine to pay tribute to Khushwant Singh who passed away March 20 at the age of 99 in New Delhi, India. The meeting will be held at Palatine Public Library, 700 N North Ct, Palatine, from 2 pm to 5 pm on

Sunday March 30. Some books written by Khushwant Singh will be on display. Many local organizations are participating. Tea and snacks will be served. For more information and those who want to attend please call Prof. Jagindar Singh Ramdev 847543-7565 or Thakar S Basati 847736-6092

Congresswomen Duckworth visits gurudwara Cont’d from page 16

She took tour of Library and enquired about collection of books. S Harwinderpal Singh Lail, Chairman Constitution Implementation Committee, introduced her and talked about how she lost both her legs flying plane in Iraq, instead of giving up. Mrs Duckworth started her short speech with Sikh slogan, "Waheguru Ji Ka Khlasa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh." She said she was born and raised in Thailand, where she learned about Sikhs and how they helped British win wars. Her mother is Buddhist and spoke no English when they came to US. She had to translate for her

mom. She understands the tough life immigrants go through to settle here. She understands how most immigrants work double jobs to put food on table. She said she was aware of Sikh tradition of "Try Peace first." If other means fail, then it is OK to use power, which is in line with US policies. She invited Sangat members to contact her office for any Medicare, Medicaid, Immigration or visa issues. She was presented World War 2 poster SRS President S. Sokhi Singh and other Trustees. It will be hung in her office. S. Rajinderbir Singh Mago, Community activist, the told Sangat that it was Mrs Duckworth who co-sponsored the bill that will allow bearded Sikhs to serve in US army.

and diet, Indian women in American politics, stem education and women's fashion. A food drive was successfully conducted as a part of this event. The program started with team building activates designed to acquaint participants with each other and they worked on fun projects together. The official opening began with traditional lamp lighting, which was followed by an invocation song performed by TAGC members. This was followed by welcome address given by Srinivas Pedamallu, the President of TAGC. The MCs of the program were Ms Kiran Mattey and Dr Bhargavi Nettem. This year's theme - Inspiring Change and its significance was explained by Ms Nandini Kondapalli. This was followed by five work-

shops presented by a panel of experts from various fields. Dr Bharathi Marri M.D. presented a workshop on mental health issues which are very important indicators of our health and wellness. A STEM education workshop was presented by Dr Suma Rajashanker, Professor at NIU, who spoke about the current emphasis on science and technology education to fill the fast-growing and high-wage jobs in the future. "Eat Healthy and Live Wealthy" was presented by Deepali Aul, nutritionist and founder of HF Chef. She spoke about the dangers of eating processed food and high fructose products. Her seminar gave useful health and diet tips to the audience. Cont’d on page 25


March 28, 2014

24 India Post www.indiapost.com


March 28, 2014

Community Across America

India Post 25

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Telugu associations host Women's Day grown to be one of the oldest and largest Indo-American organizations in the United States. ATA is a non-profit national organization founded in 1990 with headquarters in Chicago. It aims to assist and promote literary, cultural, educational, religious, social,

Cont’d from page 23

The last workshop was presented by Nupur Sharma who teaches at the Illinois Institute of Art in Schaumburg. She spoke about dressing for success and fashion mistakes to avoid. All workshops were well received and provided the audience opportunity to exchange ideas and ask questions. The food drive for charity initiated by Padma Madireddy collected about 18 boxes of food which were donated to Chicago Food Depository. Women enjoyed dinner and socialized. The evening ended with dancing, as the DJ played popular soundtracks which brought all the women to the dance floor. TAGC is a non-profit organization devoted to the awareness and promotion of Telugu Heritage and Culture in the Midwest region headquartered in Chicago. The Association founded in 1971 has

economic, health and community activities of the people of Telugu origin as well as to promote exchange programs for students, scientists, and professionals of Telugu origin between the United States of America, Canada and India and other countries.

Readers Write... www.indiapost.com

In support of Prakash M Swamy ATA women members

W

e have read the detailed letter of Prakash M Swamy, Managing Editor of the Indian Express, North American Edition, to Justice Katju, Chairman of Press Council of India, and discussed threadbare his version of the problems that he faced at the hands of Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations and Consulate General of India. We members at the NRI Press Club in Chicago do understand his predicament and are fully supportive of his civilized and disciplined manner of handling the situation. We would like to assist him in sorting out this type of vexatious problem. Madhu Patel Founder President, NRI Press Club, Chicago ATA and TAGC officials

Disclaimer :- India Post does not endorse opinions expressed in the letters.


26

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TOP TEN HINDI FILM SONGS

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A

fter reports of the famous fallout of Madhur Bhandarkar-Aishwarya Rai Bachchan in 2011 following her pregnancy, the industry buzz is that director Sujoy Ghosh has replaced his favorite actress Vidya Balan with Kangana Ranaut in his next film titled 'Durga Rani Singh' following rumors of her pregnancy. While the curly haired Kangna is getting rave reviews for her wonderful performance in the recent movie 'Queen', it seems she is now ready to take over the show from Vidya Balan. At a time when people expected Ghosh to sign his 'Kahaani's' star Vidya Balan, the rumor mills around the town are buzzing that he has signed Kangna because of Vidya's alleged pregnancy news. Media reports say Vidya Balan has been spotted frequenting a suburban hospital and if they are to be be-

ch 28, 2014

1 Patakha Guddi: Highway 2 Ishq Bulaava: Hasee Toh Phasee 3 Mann Kunto Maula: Gunday 4 Maahi Ve: Highway 5 Zehnaseeb: Hasee Toh Phasee 6 Kinare: Queen 7 Khushfehmiyan : One By Two 8 London Thumakda : Queen 9 Bawla Sa Sapna: Shaadi Ke Side Effects 10 Yahaan Vahaan: Shaadi Ke Side Effects

M

lieved, she has been consulting a doctor regularly. But the hospital staff has been instructed not to give out any details about her visits. The actress, who married UTV's head Sidharth Roy Kapur in 2012, was even spotted wearing relatively loose-fitted maxi dresses

B

ollywood's style diva Sonam Kapoor is allegedly dating entrepreneur Sahir Berry. Sahir is a businessman and a model, and apparently divides his time between Delhi, London and Goa, where he owns a beach club, Praia. A Mid-Day report says that the pretty actress was spotted with Sahir at a restaurant in Mumbai last year and since then gossipmongers have been speculating if something is going on between the two. The report further says that Sonam and Sahir got introduced to each other via social media and since then they have grown pretty close. It is also said that Sonam's sister Rhea played an important role in getting Sonam close to Sahir. Sahir did his graduation in the USA and then did a course in international business from London. His family too is based in London. He took a sabbatical and then returned to Goa to take up some modeling assignments. The handsome businessman was also spotted at the Le Mill-Farfetch party that Sonam Kapoor co-hosted last year.

any went clickety-click when Ekta Kapoor and Sunny Leone were in Delhi for a press conference. Commenting on whether Sunny was an obvious choice for 'Ragini MMS 2', since it required her to expose, Ekta said, "I think bechari Sunny ko hi hum bekar mein aise na bolein, when every other actress is wearing a bikini these days. Sunny has an extremely charming face. Before I'd decided the cast, Tusshar told me, "If you cast Sunny, you have a free ad. She is generally a beautiful looking girl." "Sexy is a part of each film. When you watch Hrithik Roshan running on a beach, all oiled up with his hair wet, you're watching it because you think he looks sexy. If you are watching Priyanka Chopra in a bikini, on the beach, you watch it because you think she looks sexy. So

sexy is a part of each film we watch our stars because we think they look sexy," a d d e d Leone.


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“This will be her second film with Shah Rukh Khan after 'Jab Tak Hai Jaan'."

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he latest Bollywood buzz is that Katrina Kaif has bagged the lead role in 'Raees' starring SRK. The movie was in the news when Nawazuddin Siddiqui replaced Farhan Akhtar in the film. According to media reports, it seems that Katrina has apparently been offered the film. A source was quoted in the media as saying, "Katrina is in talks to play the lead role. They have been discussing it for a while now, but latest developments suggest that she has given them a go-ahead. This will be her second film with Shah Rukh Khan after 'Jab Tak Hai Jaan'." "Post 'Bang Bang', Katrina will be working on 'Jagga Jasoos' opposite Ranbir Kapoor, but it looks like this film will be pushed ahead. Besides these two films, she doesn't have too much on her plate as of now, so a lead role in 'Raees' is just right for her," a source said.

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f you are one of those who read and feed the financial dailies, then the name of James Crabtree will surely ring a bell. Well, that equa tion is soon going to be changed as James Crabtree (the Mumbai Bureau Chief of the London-based newspaper 'Financial Times') is now all set to make his grand Bollywood debut in Kick, a film that stars none other than Salman Khan himself! James' entry into Bollywood is not less than a typical Bollywood Masala potboiler. Buzz is that when Sajid Nadiadwala (the film's producer) was desperately looking for an actor to play the role of a British diplomat, Chetan Bhagat (who has written the script of Kick) suggested the name of his friend James. Since he was a huge Bollywood buff, James wasted no time in thinking and quickly lapped up the offer. Talking about his role, a visibly excited James said that he plays the role of a British diplomat working in the Indian Embassy of London, who also happens to be the father of Salman's lady love.

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aran Johar's magnum opus Shuddhi hit a roadblock after the original casting of Hrithik Roshan and Kareena Kapoor fell apart when Hrithik opted out, thus delaying the project. "I cannot let a vision like Shuddhi stagnate any further," he said in a statement. The film may roll soon with Ranveer stepping into Hrithik's shoes. A source said that as soon as the actor returns from Delhi, where he is shooting for Shaad Ali's next, he will meet Karan Johar and director Karan Malhotra for a final round of talks before he signs on the dotted line. Earlier also the trio had a long meeting wherein Ranveer gave his consent to play the male lead. His Goliyon Ki Raasleela Ram-Leela heroine Deepika Padukone has been finalized as the female lead. Her name was being tossed around even when Kareena Kapoor Khan was the official pick.


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„ Health

Line

Sanford taking over operations of Montana hospital SIOUX FALLS, S.D.: Dakotasbased Sanford Health has agreed to manage the business operations of Liberty Medical Center in Chester, Mont. The Sioux Falls Argus Leader reports that the agreement takes effect for the Montana facilities, which include a hospital, clinic, nursing home and assisted living center. Derek Daly of Sanford Health will serve as CEO. Liberty Medical Center board chairwoman Kirsten Kammerzell says rural hospitals are facing many challenges and the deal with Sanford Health will help the hospital in the long term. Chester is near the Canadian border in north-central Montana. The hospital has about 100 employees and serves about 3,000 people. -AP

„

Hospitals try to avoid elective deliveries

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn.: Tennessee hospitals have had a dramatic decrease in elective baby deliveries over the last two years. The Chattanooga Times Free Press reports hospitals now have a target of 5 percent. Just a couple of years ago, some had rates of more than 40 percent. Bridget Hayes, who is director of labor and delivery services at Parkridge East Hospital in Chattanooga, said deliveries became about convenience over the last two decades. But those days are diminishing quickly as a growing amount of research shows that elective procedures can be risky to mother and child.-AP

„

Audit finds flaws in what NC paid Medicaid RALEIGH, N.C.: A state audit has found the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services paid Medicaid health providers too much. The News & Observer of Raleigh report the annual audit of federally funded programs in the agency found seven problem areas. DHHS says it has corrected or will fix them all. The audit found in a sample of 280 Medicaid claims, 65 of them were paid in error or not properly documented. The audit also found the state's new food stamp software allowed county workers to improperly override the usual six-month time period before benefits must be reconsidered. -AP

Health Science

Outside groups active in Virginia Medicaid debate Details on Page 35

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Illinois hospitals shift to consumer convenience CHICAGO: In cities and rural areas throughout Illinois, hospitals are extending services beyond their walls in a twin bid to improve health and capture more business. With ``consumer convenience'' and ``retail approach'' the new buzzwords, hospitals are branching out. Fitness centers, urgent care clinics and dental practices run by hospitals are no longer unusual ventures. A new report details the changing health care landscape, finding two out of five Illinois hospitals operate freestanding outpatient clinics and one in three run fitness centers. The trend began years ago and got a boost from the nation's new health care law, which provides financial incentives to hospitals that keep large populations healthy - and penalties to those that fail. In Jerseyville, 80-year-old re-

tiree Margie Meuth drives a mile to exercise at Jersey Community Hospital's fitness center. When the $3 million center was built 15 years ago it was a bold move for the Illinois hospital serving a rural area an hour north of St. Louis. Now, executives from other hospitals seek Jersey's ad-

vice about opening their own fitness facilities where future patients can lift weights, swim laps and do aerobics. ``The center has really helped keep me active,'' said Meuth, who takes a dance-fitness class for seniors. ``I've met a lot of good friends out there that I wouldn't

Swedish Covenant Hospital in Chicago.

have met otherwise.'' The Illinois Hospital Association report finds that hospitals contribute $83.4 billion to the state's economy in direct and indirect spending. In nearly half the state's counties, hospitals are among the top three employers, writing paychecks to the equivalent of 200,226 full-time workers and indirectly spurring employment for another 250,000 workers. The report calculated hospitals' economic benefit using a system developed by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. The report lists services provided in 2012 by hospitals or through a hospital's joint venture: • 53 percent of Illinois hospitals provided hospice services. • 41 percent provided ambulance services. • 41 percent provided freestanding outpatient care. Cont'd on Page 34

Saturated fat may not cause heart disease LONDON: Eating ghee or butter, high in saturated fats, may not increase the risk of heart disease, an Indian-origin scientist has claimed, challenging the medical guidelines that urge people to avoid the 'unhealthy' fat. A new study found that the current level of evidence does not support guidelines restricting saturated fatty acid consumption to reduce coronary risk nor does it support high consumption of polyunsaturated fats - such as omega 3 or omega 6 - to reduce coronary heart disease. An international research collaboration led by the University of Cambridge analyzed existing cohort studies and randomized trials on coronary risk and fatty acid intake. The researchers also found insufficient support for guidelines which advocate the high consumption of polyunsatu-

rated fats (such as omega 3 and omega 6) to reduce the risk of coronary disease. When specific fatty acid subtypes (such as different types of omega 3) were examined, the effects of the fatty acids on cardiovascular risk varied even within the same broad 'family' questioning the existing dietary guidelines

current nutritional guidelines, said Dr Rajiv Chowdhury, lead author of the research. "In 2008, more than 17 million people died from a cardiovascular cause globally. With so many affected by this illness, it is critical to have appropriate prevention guidelines which are informed by the best available scientific

A new study found that the current level of evidence does not support guidelines restricting saturated fatty acid consumption to reduce coronary risk nor does it support high consumption of polyunsaturated fats that focus principally on the total amount of fat from saturated or unsaturated rather than the food sources of the fatty acid. These are interesting results that potentially stimulate new lines of scientific enquiry and encourage careful reappraisal of our

evidence," Chowdhury said. The researchers analyzed data from 72 unique studies with over 600,000 participants from 18 nations. They found that total saturated fatty acid, whether measured in the diet or in the bloodstream as a

bio-marker, was not associated with coronary disease risk in the studies. Similarly, when analyzing the studies that involved assessments of the consumption of total monounsaturated fatty acids, long-chain omega-3 and omega6 polyunsaturated fatty acids, there were no significant associations between consumption and cardiovascular risk. Researchers found that different subtypes of circulating long-chain omega-3 and omega6 fatty acids had different associations with coronary risk, with some evidence that circulating levels of eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids (two main types of long-chain omega3 polyunsaturated fatty acids), and arachidonic acid (an omega6 fat) are each associated with lower coronary risk. The study was published in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine. -PTI


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Drug-resistant TB on the rise in India NEW DELHI: A global medical humanitarian aid group has sought the government's intervention in preventing unregulated sale of tuberculosis drugs in the private healthcare sector, saying it has led to the emergence of drug-resistant TB in the country. "It is the patients who suffer the consequences of poor regulation of TB drug formulations in India. An increasing number of our patients are being diagnosed with drug resistant TB (DR-TB). We encounter a spectrum of resistance patterns which range from mono-drug-resistant TB all the way through to extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR TB)," said Dr Simon Janes, medical coordinator with Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) in India. "This makes it even more difficult for treatment providers like MSF and the government's TB Control Program to accurately diagnose and treat the different forms of drug-resistant tuberculosis," Janes said in a statement released on the eve of World TB Day. According to a MSF study, DR-TB infections are on the rise in the country and this has made the disease more difficult and considerably more expensive to treat. The conditions for emergence of drug resistance are increasingly being linked to poor drug regulation in the country.

"In our experience of working in India since 1999, we have seen prescriptions from private health providers that were completely inappropriate. For example we have seen many prescriptions that prescribe three out of the four first-line TB drugs in combination with a quinalone (antibiotic)," said Dr Homa Mansoor, TB Medical Refer-

eral of India (DCGI) - has made even basic treatment of drug-sensitive TB difficult to monitor. In the face of so many different formulations available in pharmacies across the country, ensuring the correct prescription of first-line TB drugs in the private sector is almost an impossible task for the Central

ent for MSF India. "The alarm on drug resistance has been sounded, and the Health Ministry must act now to address this public health crisis," Mansoor added. Lack of oversight from the drug regulatory authority - the Drug Controller Gen-

TB Division (CTD), the MSF statement claimed. As a result, poor compliance to World Health Organization (WHO) treatment guidelines is common among private doctors. TB patients being treated by private doctors in India might be facing a grave risk of developing drug-resistant TB due

Search for kidney ends at West Virginia hospital BECKLEY, W.Va.: There's a saying in Terry Russell's trade: ``We sell the Earth and everything upon it.'' In fact, the auctioneer from Galax, Va., claims the only objects he hasn't yet swapped are a ship and a locomotive. Still, the man known for procuring virtually anything was helpless to access the one item that could save his life - a kidney. Before the Army veteran arrived at Beckley VA Medical Center, he had given up on medical treatment, first being promised he was a transplant candidate, then experiencing the depletion of hemodialy-

already on a transplant list. ``For five years, we thought I was on that list, when I wasn't,'' Russell states. Flashback to what caused the destruction of his kidney tissue, a nephrotoxic combination of medications to treat arthritis, and it is understandable Russell harbored a hefty dose of skepticism. ``I didn't have a problem with my kidneys until after the medications,'' he said. The uncoordinated regimen prescribed piecemeal by different physicians proved highly destructive. ``No one did kidney function tests then,'' he stated. ``(In the early `90s), they were just working on me and trying to treat the arthritis.'' Eventually, Russell found his way to the Beckley VA Medical Center, what he calls the ``Taj Mahal'' of facilities for veterans. He met Dr. Jorge Gordinho, whom he reveres as ``one of the finest physicians that's ever been.'' Dr. Gordinho helped to turn Russell's declining West Virginia University Hospitals health around by introducing him to the right sis treatments that took ``everything out type of dialysis for him, Continuous Amof my body but my soul.'' bulatory Peritoneal Dialysis. Russell says he was told by a former Cont'd on Page 34 physician at another facility that he was

to irrational prescribing practices or indiscriminate use of non-WHO-recommended drug regimens, it said. MSF has demanded strict regulation of first-line TB drug formulations and prescription practices in the private sector. In a bid to prevent further emergence of drug-resistant tuberculosis in the country, the group has sought implementation by the Central TB Division of a standardized first-line daily drug regimen across the public and private sectors to help in simplifying prescription, adherence and drug supply management of first-line TB treatment. "Other countries have already undertaken steps to control DR-TB, by ensuring drug regulatory authorities strictly regulate the quality and formulations of first-line TB drugs in the private market. "Governments like Brazil have even taken the additional step of making the public sector the primary distributor of all TB drugs," said Leena Menghaney, India Coordinator of MSF's Access Campaign. According to the Central TB Division, India has the highest burden of TB with two million cases every year. WHO's Global Tuberculosis Report (2013) says India has the second highest MDR-TB burden in the world with an estimated 64,000 cases in 2012. Yet only 14,000 people in India with MDR-TB have access to the treatment they need to stay alive, MSF said. -PTI


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Obamacare plans bring hefty fees for certain drugs MIAMI: Breast cancer survivor Ginny Mason was thrilled to get health coverage under the Affordable Care Act despite her pre-existing condition. But when she realized her arthritis medication fell under a particularly costly tier of her plan, she was forced to switch to another brand. Under the plan, her Celebrex would have cost $648 a month until she met her $1,500 prescription deductible, followed by an $85 monthly co-pay. Mason is one of the many Americans with serious illnesses - including cancer, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis who are indeed finding relatively low monthly premiums under President Barack Obama's law. But some have been shocked at how much their prescriptions are costing as insurers are sorting drug prices into a complex tier system and in some cases charging co-insurance rates as high as 50 percent. That can leave patients on the hook for thousands. ``I was grateful for the Afford-

able Care Act because it didn't turn me down but ... it's like where's the affordable on this one,'' said Mason, a 61-year-old from West Lafayette, Indiana who currently pays an $800 monthly premium. Before the federal health law took effect, Mason paid slightly more for her monthly premium on a plan that didn't cover her arthritis or pain medications and some routine doctor's visits. Avalere Health, a market research and consulting firm, estimates some consumers will pay half the cost of their specialty drugs under health overhaul-related plans, while customers in the private market typically pay no more than a third. Patient advocates worry that insurers may be trying to discourage chronically ill patients from enrolling by putting high cost drugs onto specialty tiers. Brian Rosen, senior vice president for public policy for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, said the group studied premiums

and benefits for patients with blood cancer in seven states, including Florida, California, Texas and New York. They found 50 percent co-insurance rates for specialty drugs on several plans in Florida and Texas, while the

Insurers can generally choose to put whichever drugs they want into the specialty tier of a plan. Generic drugs for blood pressure or cholesterol typically fall into categories that require patients to pay less than $20 out-of-pocket highest co-insurance rates on California plans were 30 percent and in New York, co-pays were typically $70.

Search for kidney ends at West Virginia hospital Cont'd from Page 33

CAPD is an alternative to hemodialysis for certain patients involving an implant in the peritoneum, or lining of the abdominal cavity. According to the National Kidney Center, CAPD doesn't require a machine, only a clean welllit place where the patient can selftreat. Once a surgical implant is placed and the abdominal area given time to heal, the patient receives education on how to perform the procedure. A bag of dialysis solution enters via catheter into the abdomen, stays for several hours and then is drained for disposal. While the procedure isn't for every patient needing dialysis, the self-reliant, independent Russell fit the bill. According to Dr. Gordinho, ``To be a good candidate for CAPD is to have a `virgin belly' no surgeries and therefore no adhesions. Another factor is for the patient to be an active participant in his or her treatment plan. Mr. Russell was very active and willing to do what it took to improve his outcome.'' For Russell, who was finally placed and confirmed on not one but two transplant lists (Veteran's Health Administration and Charleston Area Medical Center),

the alternative was a blessing as he waited for a donor match. On March 24, 2013, Russell finished his last course of seven years of dialysis when he answered a call from University of Pittsburgh Medical Center telling him to leave immediately. A kidney matching his requirements had been harvested. Russell remembers every detail of the transplant provided at

UPMC, working in partnership with the VHA. Commenting on the professionalism of the staff and the high level of coordination, Russell says he was greeted at the door with preparations beginning immediately. ``Forty-five minutes later, the kidney was in and functioning.''

Under the law, insurers can't charge an individual more than $6,350 in out-of pocket costs a year and no more than $12,700 for a family policy. But patients advocates warn those with serious illnesses could pay their entire

That Russell is doing well with his transplant is no surprise to Dr. Gordinho. ``The more reliable and compliant the patient, the more successful the transplant process will be,'' he states. Another member of Russell's VA Medical Center team, Ginny Topping, R.N., B.S.N. and the Beckley VAMC's organ transplant case manager, explains how the support person to a patient receiving a transplant, often the spouse, is also a critical component to recovery. ``They encourage the patient as far as compliance goes and help them take care of themselves.'' F o r Russell, his constant support system was wife, Shirley. Together, they plan on obtaining the information about his donor if and when the opportunity becomes available. What they were told about the anonymous donor is that he or she was in a car accident and was around 50 years old.-AP

out-of-pocket cap before their insurance kicks in any money. ``The challenge is for the sickest patients, the ones that need access to these specialty drugs, the costs are going to come in most cases from that out of pocket cap ... they are likely to hit that $6,350 ceiling and in some cases quickly,'' said Rosen.

Insurers say prescription drugs are one of the main reasons health care costs are rising. ``Spending on specialty drugs is growing rapidly. It's unsustainable,'' said Clare Krusing, spokeswoman for America's Health Insurance Plans, a trade group that represents the private insurance industry. Only 1 percent of prescriptions written in 2012 were for specialty drugs, but they accounted for 25 percent of the total cost of prescription drugs, according to a study by America's Health Insurance Plans. Insurers can generally choose to put whichever drugs they want into the specialty tier of a plan. Generic drugs for blood pressure or cholesterol typically fall into categories that require patients to pay less than $20 out-of-pocket. But patients can end up spending significantly more when they pay for a percentage of a specialty drug's cost. Two of the most frequently prescribed specialty drugs in recent years include the cancer drug Avastin, with an $11,000 average annual price per patient, or the hypertension drug like Letairis, which costs $32,000 per year, according to health insurers. -AP

Illinois hospitals shift to consumer convenience Cont'd from Page 32

• 35 percent provided home health care. • 34 percent operated fitness centers. • 33 percent provided dentistry. Inpatient revenue, or dollars earned from hospital stays, is declining as a percentage of hospitals' total revenue with outpatient services bringing in a bigger portion of the total. Last year, less than half of Advocate Health Care's revenue came from inpatient care, said Scott Powder, Advocate senior vice president and chief strategy officer. With 12 hospitals in the Chicago area, Advocate Health Care is partnering with retail pharmacies, keeping medical offices open nights and weekends and delivering more care in patients' homes, even chemotherapy, Powder said. ``All the stuff outside of the hospital is up,'' Powder said. ``The change is fairly substantial and our expectation is that it's only going to continue for the foreseeable future.'' On Chicago's North Side, lead-

ers at Swedish Covenant Hospital are pursuing a retail approach, aiming to open four to five urgent care and primary care centers next year. The hospital recently invested $350,000 to launch a new medical office in a senior living residential tower several miles from its campus. ``The growth strategy is to focus on bringing services closer to

Inpatient revenue, or dollars earned from hospital stays, is declining as a percentage of hospitals' total revenue with outpatient services bringing in a bigger portion of the total. the patient, closer to the consumer,'' said Swedish Covenant Hospital CEO Mark Newton. Instead of ``patients coming to us, we need to go to the patient.'' -AP


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Outside groups active in Virginia Medicaid debate RICHMOND, Va.: In the fight over Medicaid expansion in Virginia - a debate that could lead to a state government shutdown - two of the groups leading public relations efforts on both sides are opaquely funded nonprofits with ties to wealthy out-of-state activists. Helping make the case against Medicaid expansion is Americans for Prosperity, a nonprofit tea party group backed by billionaire oil magnates David and Charles Koch. A leading message-shaping group in support of Medicaid expansion is ProgressVa, a subsidiary of a liberal group that began more than a decade ago in Colorado and has links to several rich liberal activists. As nonprofits designated as ``social welfare'' organizations by the IRS also known as a 501(c)4s - both groups can operate without detailing their donors. ``Like virtually every other 501(c) 4 organization across the political spectrum, ProgressVA protects our donors by not disclosing their names,'' said Anna Scholl, executive director of ProgressVa. Nor do the groups have to disclose how much they are spending on their respective efforts in Virginia. That bothers some elected officials. ``If they are going to participate in policy issues, they should be required to say who they are, and who their donors are,'' said Sen. John Watkins, one of three Republi-

can senators who supports expanding Medicaid eligibility. ``What's at stake is the ability of the public to understand where these points of view are coming from.'' Lawmakers adjourned from their regular legislative session earlier this month with-

icaid a key legislative goal of his new administration and has said the state, and rural hospitals in particular, cannot afford to forgo $5 million a day in federal funding. Under the Affordable Care Act, the federal government has pledged to cover

People gather for a March 15 rally in support of Medicaid expansion at Capitol Square in Richmond, Va. The Medicaid disagreement caused the General Assembly to adjourn without passing the $96 billion two-year state budget.

out passing a roughly $96 billion biennial budget. Gov. Terry McAuliffe and the Democratically controlled Senate want a version of Medicaid expansion that emphasizes the use of private insurers in the state budget. The GOP-controlled House opposes Medicaid expansion, whatever its form. McAuliffe had made expanding Med-

the bulk of an expanded Medicaid program. But House Republicans have argued that the state's current Medicaid is already too costly and growing unsustainably. They have also pointed to the flawed rollout of the new health care law as a sign that Virginia should be weary of enacting one of its key provisions.

A special session is set to start Monday, but there's been no sign the two sides are close to a compromise. Without a budget in place by July 1, state agencies won't have funds to operate. In recent weeks, Americans for Prosperity has run state-wide radio ads and organized small rallies around the state against Medicaid expansion. At a rally earlier this year at the Capitol, AFP President Tim Phillips said his group was going to make sure that House Republicans ``keep their word'' and maintain their opposition Medicaid expansion. ``We're going to trust but verify,'' said Phillips. Sen. Emmett Hanger, an Augusta Republican, said Americans For Prosperity sent ``slick'' campaign-style mailers to his constituents last year urging them to call Hanger and tell him to reconsider his support for expanded Medicaid eligibility. Hanger said he felt like he has been attacked by ``carpetbaggers and big-money interests from out of state.'' Americans for Prosperity has been active in federal and state races around the country, spending millions attacking President Barack Obama and other supporters of the Affordable Care Act. The Koch brothers, who helped found Americans for Prosperity and are two of the wealthiest men in America, have become a favorite target of national Democrats. -AP


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„

Realty Tidbits

Big demand for housing vouchers in Fort Wayne FORT WAYNE, Ind.: Fort Wayne Housing officials say the lingering effects of the Great Recession are contributing to a high demand for affordable housing. The Journal Gazette reports about 6,000 people applied for the voucher program previously known as Section 8 during a recent three-day signup period. And Habitat for Humanity says it had a record 600 applicants last year. The last time the Fort Wayne Housing Authority opened its waiting list was four years ago, when 10,000 people applied for vouchers. Executive Director Maynard Scales says it would take 20 years to satisfy all of this year's applicants. Voucher recipients pay 30 percent of their income toward rent and the federal government pays the rest. Scales said his office expects to help about 300 people through the voucher program. -AP

„ Digivijay Singh gets clean chit in land allotment case INDORE: Ahead of parliamentary election, Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh has got major relief with the CBI giving him clean chit in a 2008 case of land allotment for a mall in Indore. The CBI in its report presented before local court in Indore said that there was no evidence against Digvijay. He was accused of flouting the laws to allot land to Treasure Island (TI) shopping complex in Indore during his tenure as chief minister of state. The Economic Offence Wing (EOW) has already given him a clean chit in the case. CBI has started investigation against Digivijay on the direction of Indore bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court in 2013 and the report was presented before court.

Real Estate

Aamir rejects allegations of forcibly vacating flats

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tomer will scan through the entire market for properties which will suit the customers' preferences, including finer nuances like preferred location, elevation, amenities, view, vaastu, budget, time frame of delivery etc. They will investigate, evaluate and find answers specific to the customers' requirements, many of which are not available on the public domain. Customers will get a secured online account, from where they can access recommended properties and compare them, making it easier for them to choose their dream homes. More than 30-40% of Assisted Property's customers have gotten to know about them

Customers will get a secured online account, from where they can access recommended properties and compare them, making it easier for them to choose their dream homes. the lookout for a decent property. Taking all these considerations into account, IndiaProperty has come up with a service that would bring a lot of cheer to those who are looking for properties. Assisted Property is an online property search assistance service powered by real-estate experts from IndiaProperty.com. The site consists of over 700,000 validated residential property listings. A dedicated Property Search Manager (PSM) attached to each cus-

through word of mouth publicity or referrals from their existing customers. Here are some of the key benefits that customers would reap from this service: • Finalizing your dream home in quick time. • A PSM who provides unbiased expert advice. • Online tools to evaluate properties. • Key details such as locality information, trends, photographs etc are provided. Speaking about the service, Ganesh Vasudevan, CEO, IndiaProperty.com said, 'Assisted Property is a big leap forward in our endeavor to provide our users an unmatched property search experience. It empowers our users with the right information and enables informed decision making in what is perhaps the biggest purchase decision for most Indians in their lifetime. Our service is designed to help buyers do a thorough evaluation of alternatives, saving at least 4-6 weekends of ef-

fort and time in the process. This service is backed by IndiaProperty.com's expertise in residential real-estate space." A dedicated team of PSMs have earned the trust and respect of customers through their knowledge of the market and their efforts to keep the customers constantly pleased.

Sujith from Singapore who was looking for a property in Kerala had this to say about Assisted Property, "I was really exhausted looking for a suitable property from various sources for the past few months. But with Assisted Property, I found my new home without too much effort and at my convenience."

Office space demand to grow by 7% in 2014 NEW DELHI: Office space absorption is likely to rise 7 per cent this year to 29 million sq ft in India's 7 major cities as corporates look at expanding businesses, says global real estate consultant DTZ. Absorption was 27 million sq ft last year in the seven cities Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Pune, Hyderabad and Kolkata. In its report on India office Demand and Trends, DTZ also projected that office rentals would remain stable in most markets in the first half of 2014 and rents would start rising from the second half. "Most corporates are expected to firm up plans for expansion in the next few months with the overall take-up forecast to grow in 2014, especially in the

second half of the year," DTZ said in the report. "...economy is projected to grow at a broadly higher rate in 2014 than 2013. This in turn will eventually feed through to generate higher demand for the real estate sector. Consequently, office space take-up is projected to reach 28.9 million sq ft in 2014, a growth of 7 per cent y-o-y," it added. Highlighting the findings of the survey-based report, DTZ India Research Head Rohit Kumar said that 41 per cent of the respondents said they would add office space. Demand would be led by the IT/ITeS sector (40 per cent) followed by manufacturing and BFSI sectors. Bangalore would continue to be the largest contributor in office space demand. -PTI


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Aamir rejects allegations of forcibly vacating flats MUMBAI: Bollywood star Aamir Khan has rejected allegations of misconduct and pressure tactics in connection with a redevelopment plan for his Pali Hill housing society amid claims that the members were being forced by him to sell their property. A mother and daughter, residents of the same society where Aamir lived sometime back, alleged that the society's managing committee was misleading homeowners and pressuring them to

sell their property to the 'Dhoom 3' star. However, the spokesperson of

Saudi beggar who owned four buildings JEDDAH: A 100-year-old woman in Saudi Arabia, who spent decades begging on the streets, has died leaving behind a secret fortune of gold coins, jewellery and a real estate portfolio worth a whopping USD 10,66,580. The blind woman had begged for 50 years on the streets of Jeddah, before she suddenly died at her home, leaving behind a sizable fortune. Known as Eisha, the beggar had amassed a fortune valued at Saudi Riyal 3 million (USD 799,935), including four buildings in the Al-Balad district of Jeddah, and an additional Saudi Riyal 1 million (USD 266,645) in

beggars, 'Saudi Gazette' reported. Al-Saeedi claimed that Eisha had given him her will, which stipulates that all her money and property should be distributed among the poor. Al-Saeedi said he had informed the authorities, but there was no response. He said Eisha's wealth had increased after her mother and sister died and she inherited their property. Al-Saeedi said that when he discovered Eisha was a millionaire he advised her to give up begging, but she refused to do so saying that she was preparing for hard times.

jewels and gold coins. Ahmed Al-Saeedi, who grew up with Eisha, said she did not have any relatives except her mother and sister, who were both

Several families that live in Eisha's properties claim the old woman never charged them rent. It is not known if they will now be evicted. -PTI

49-year-old actor has denied the allegations. "We would like to clarify on behalf of our client Mr Aamir Khan that he denies all allegations regarding him putting any pressure on his society to go in for redevelopment. The fact is Mr Khan left the building more than a year ago, after an incident of a slab of concrete falling on the head of one of

the members, resulting in the member being hospitalized," the spokesman said in a statement. "Mr Khan strongly denies any allegations of pressure tactics or misconduct on his part, and takes strong exception to attempts being made to defame him," it said. The statement further clarified that, in absence of Khan, the society had several meetings and discussions, regarding redevelop-

ment. The general body passed a resolution with 80 per cent majority members voting in favor of redevelopment. Thereafter, the society made a request in writing to Khan to make an offer. The actor gave the matter due thought and made an offer. In his offer letter, he also suggested the society to invite other offers to ensure best value for the society and its members. -PTI


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40 India Post

March 28, 2014 Ant hill at Lichfield

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anet and I have recently returned from a fabulous 11 week campervan journey to Broome, via Kakadu, Darwin and Lichfield National Park. We covered 14,000 kms in our 32 year old trusty Toyota campervan which we have affectionately named 'Queenie' due to her number plate QUU795. She behaved impeccably and only objected when I mistakenly filled her up with petrol (it was the same price and on the same bowser station as the diesel), which her engine was not keen on! Luckily she stopped within 12kms of the little town on the Queensland/NT border and

Campervan setup

it was a relatively cheap and painless task to get her taken back and have her tank drained out. Apart from that perfect, using very little oil and water. We left home on a miserable rainy day

(one of the chief reasons for leaving when we did) and drove to Toowoomba where we dropped off pots at a restaurant (Sophias) which has the most amazing mixed mezza (and sweets) plates ... these they provided to us gratis, most civil I say! From there the weather changed and we had 75 days of sunshine ... followed by another 14 since our return! We headed up through Longreach, Cloncurry, Mt Isa to the Northern Territory and detoured to see the Gulf of Carpentaria at Bing Bong, an iron ore loading facility with a small beach at which one could not swim due to the danger of salt water crocodiles! Then back across to the Stuart Highway and up through Kakadu NP which was wonderful especially as we took in many of the (free) guided ranger talks and walks. Once again no swimming due to the huge number of crocs. Then up to Darwin, a pleasant modern (the old was destroyed by Cyclone Tracy in 1972) city where we enjoyed the markets, deck chair cinema, live theater and the museum which has a wonderful gallery devoted to the local wildlife including a 5 meter stuffed crocodile (called sweetheart!) and a whole wing centering around the cyclone and its aftermath. Cont’d on page 42

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March 28, 2014

Travel & Hospitality Post

India Post

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Aus Hotel group looking at franchise in India SINGAPORE: Australia's hospitality brand, Country Comfort Hotels, has begun initial franchise discussion with a Mumbai-based group as it looks for business opportunities in India. "We have just embarked on initial discussions with a group in Mumbai about the possibility of a Country Comfort franchise," said Sean Flynn, Executive VicePresident for brands at the Singaporebased SilverNeedle Hospitality that owns Country Comfort brand. "We are focusing on India this year. We see huge opportunities there," he said, adding Country Comfort has aggressive plans for franchising in India. "We aim to sign 14 Area Development Agreements in the country, which commit to the development of 100 properties. We are targeting to have over 20 of these open in five years," Flynn told PTI here. Country Comfort model has an average of 101 rooms and looks to put its franchise on hotels with 80-150 rooms each in major cities as well as secondary and tertiary cities in India. "Both the domestic business and the

domestic leisure traveler have continued to show resilience and maintain their share of the pie and overall length of stay, when compared to the nationwide average from last year's survey," he said quoting the Indian Hotel Industry Survey

2012-13. Business travelers contribute the largest share to the market mix at 39 per cent to the Indian hotel industry, he said. Flynn backed his market strategy in India with industry estimates showing that

Indian cities recorded a growth of 11 per cent in hotel room supply with demand increasing by 9.2 per cent in 2012-13. The 28-year old brand has 23 hospitality properties in Australia and New Zealand. -PTI

Book your own coach India has immense sports tourism potential in Delhi Metro NEW DELHI: Tourists, foreign travelers and government or private school children, NGOs running schools for differently able children can book coaches for metro tours for anything between Rs 30,000 and Rs 50,000. Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, under its Policy on Reservation of Car(s)/Train, allows tour operators, any government or private agency, or an individual on behalf of a group or school to book cars or trains from any station of the metro network including the Airport Express line. The booking tariff consists of fares for the number of passengers and facilitation charges toward offering special facilities to the group, consisting of not less than 45 passengers up to 150 passengers. Only the coach of the

These facilitation charges, in addition to the applicable fares, consist of Rs 50,000 for one coach on Line 1, 2, 3/4, Rs 30,000 for Line 5 and Rs 40,000 for the Airport Express line

longest train consisting of 8 coaches can be booked for a group. DMRC does not charge facilitation charges from government schools and NGOs running special schools. These facilitation charges, in addition to the applicable fares, consist of Rs 50,000 for one coach on Line 1, 2, 3/4, Rs 30,000 for Line 5 and Rs 40,000 for the Airport Express line. These fares also get escalated at the rate of 10 per cent from April 1 of each financial year. However, if the originating and terminating stations are on different lines the booking on multiple lines will be treated as multiple car booking. Some special facilities offered b y DMRC a r e viewing the Metro M u seum, textiles, handicraft exhibition at nominal charges, free parking facilities at the station for the group, welcome message or special announcement for the group besides presenting mementos to travelers. One member of the DMRC will also be present with them to guide them through the journey. -PTI

NEW DELHI: India has immense potential for Sports Tourism but needs infrastructure development and proper marketing for its promotion, experts said here. At a roundtable meeting here on 'Sports Tourism in India: The Country is Game!', sportspersons and administrators said a systematic approach involving the government and sports bodies in the country was required to realize the potential. Ace golfer and thrice Asian Tour winner Gaurav Ghei rued limited participation of the people in the game and said golf courses should be thrown open to the public. "India is a popular golf destination. It's becoming one of the greatest sports in India and golf is a multi-billion industry. However, there is an immense need to improve the infrastructure at golf courses. It is quite unreasonable for a golfer to pay for playing

the sport," he said. "Golf courses in India are open for only members, bankers or selected group of people. For a non-member it becomes very expensive and difficult to pay through his pocket. In India, we must have tourism

friendly golf courses. Here land is very expensive and it is not easy to get open spaces for golf courses. To run the golf industry in India, it is very important to introduce online booking facility. The overall golfing experience should be made much more enjoyable."-PTI


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To Broome, via Kakadu A pleasure trip in Australia

Bungle Bungles NP Cont’d from page 40

Next we headed south and discovered many hot springs, plunge pools (below waterfalls) and other swimming holes which were 'open

unless cornered or stood on. As it was bloody hot and everybody else was jumping in we did too and thoroughly enjoyed it all the way down to Mataranka. Lichfield National Park is stunning

Giant Boab at Wickham

for swimming' and theoretically (but not necessarily) salt water crocodile free (see sign), although they did contain fresh water crocodiles (up to 4 meters!) which are harmless

with many waterfalls (and swimming) plus other local attractions such as 5 meter ant hills. Then across to Kununurra, in WA, a new town set on a beautiful (SW

Crocodile at Kakadu NP

Rock Foramtion at Kakadu

Bull sharks

croc free) lake in the Ord river which is fed by Lake Argyle, all part of a huge irrigation system growing veggies, cotton, sandal wood trees, mangoes etc. Well worth a look, the cruise up the river to the dam is wonderful and the local national park (Mirimar) is very interesting containing many similar rock formations to those found in The Bungle Bungles. From here we took a 'joy flight' which took in the Lake, Argyle diamond mine, the Ord River and the aforementioned Bungle Bungles which was wonderful. Wyndham is not very exciting but does have an amazing lookout at 300 meters where you can watch the sunset over the estuary and the junction of five rivers. We were lucky enough to be there in July when the moon rises as the suns sets. From there we traveled through

the Kimberley ranges to Halls Creek a very scenic drive, then through Fitzroy Crossing to Derby which was the exact opposite, miles after miles of scrub and low trees with nothing to see. Derby is

Cont’d on page 43

Rock art at Kakadu

Where the outback meets the ocean

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Hiccup on the QLDNT border

bigger than Wyndham but does not have much to see apart from the wharf where the tides vary by up to 11 meters and the sunset is beautiful.

roome is the gateway to the west Kimberley region of Western Australia, where the outback meets the ocean. The spectacular red earth, turquoise water, white sands, green spinifex, blue sky and brilliant burnt orange sunsets create an amazing landscape. The warm tropical weather mixed with the coastal lifestyle and array of cultures has created a unique, relaxed way of life in the town. With 22 kilometers of white sand, kissed by warm, crystal waters, it's easy to see why this West Australian town is the ideal place to watch the sunset on a balmy, tropical

night. Situated in the State's far north, a two and a half hour flight from Perth, it's an oasis of color, culture and eclectic characters. The exotic pearling town also offers some deliciously indulgent eco-resorts dotted across its spectacular landscape. Broome's colorful lifestyle, chilled-out vibe and spectacular landscape has made it a Mecca for local and international visitors, artists, writers and musicians. Qantas offers Economy flights to Australia starting at $1,378 round trip travel from Los Angeles.


In Brief Immigrants helped by Office for New Americans ALBANY, N.Y.: Gov. Andrew Cuomo says that the new Office for New Americans assisted more than 34,000 immigrants during its first year. Launched last March, the office's ``Opportunity Centers'' helped with naturalization, federal immigration law and policy information as well as business development training. There are 27 centers across New York. They are supported by a team of lawyers specializing in immigration and naturalization.-AP

„

Father, son convicted of 2 of 3 counts in shooting

MCALLEN, Texas: A South Texas jury had found a man and his son guilty of two of three counts against them from the 2012 shooting of a federal agent on drug-patrol duty. The federal jury found Pedro Alvarado and son Arnoldo Alvarado guilty of assaulting a federal officer and a weapons crime in the wounding of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent Kelton Harrison. However, the jury deadlocked on a charge of attempted murder of a federal officer against the Alvarados. A mistrial was declared on the count, and prosecutors said they'll decide if they'll retry the count. -AP

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Ex-manager of car-wash business pleads guilty

PHOENIX: A second former general manager for a metropolitan Phoenix car-wash chain that's accused of immigration fraud in its hiring practices has pleaded guilty to a federal conspiracy charge. John Randall Sanford is among the 13 managers for Danny's Family Car Wash who have pleaded guilty in the case. Some managers who pleaded guilty have said that at least one higher-up within Danny's instructed them to rehire workers who had to be fired after a federal audit found nearly half of the company's 1,900-person workforce were people who weren't authorized to work in the United States. Sanford says in his plea agreement that he knew it was likely the business was rehiring the workers, but made a point of not asking for IDs when signing employment authorization forms. -AP

Immigration

Was attorney ineffective in Kovacs v. United States? Details on page 45

44 India Post

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March 28, 2014

PIO to pay USD 14-mn in fine in green card investment fraud NEW YORK: An Indian-origin man and two companies he founded will pay nearly USD 14 million in penalties to US regulators to settle charges that he raised about USD 158 million by defrauding hundreds of foreign investors who were seeking American residency. The US Securities and Exchange Commission had alleged that Anshoo Sethi, 30, created A Chicago Convention Center (ACCC) and Intercontinental Regional Center Trust of Chicago (IRCTC) and raised about USD 158 million from close to 300 investors as part of a fraudulent scheme that targeted foreign nationals who sought to invest in the US economy and gain US citizenship through a federal visa program. The US District Court in Chicago entered the consent judgment against Sethi and his two firms on March 17 under which he and his companies are jointly liable to pay over USD 11.5 million in disgorgement and prejudgment interest. Sethi is also required to pay a million dollars in civil penalties and

his firms ACCC and IRCTC have been slapped with penalties of up to USD 1.45 million each. The court has also enjoined

The SEC had filed its case in February 2013 and obtained a temporary restraining order and asset freeze against Sethi, ACCC and

and restrained Sethi and his firms from offering or selling securities issued by any entity owned or controlled by Sethi for 20 years. ACCC and IRCTC agreed to wind up and dissolve after satisfying their payment obligations. The defendants will pay the penalties in part through funds frozen in certain bank accounts and by selling property held in ACCC's name.

IRCTC. In April last year, the court granted the Commission's motion to return to investors USD 147 million of principal that had been frozen in certain bank accounts. Sethi, ACCC and IRCTC neither admitted nor denied the SEC's allegations. According to SEC's charges, Sethi and his companies duped

investors, primarily from China, into believing that by purchasing interests in ACCC, they would be financing construction of a convention center, hotel complex and amenities including restaurants, lounges, bars, and entertainment facilities. Investors were misled to believe their investments were simultaneously enhancing their prospects for US citizenship through the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Pilot Program, which enables foreign investors to possibly qualify for a green card if they invest a million dollars in a project that creates at least 10 jobs for US workers. The SEC alleges that Sethi and his companies falsely boasted to investors that they had acquired all the necessary building permits and that several major hotel chains had signed onto the project. They also provided falsified documents to US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) - the federal agency that administers the EB-5 program - in an attempt to secure the agency's preliminary approval of the project and investors' provisional visas.-PTI

Lawmakers meet Cuomo over Dream Act ALBANY, N.Y.: Lawmakers met with Gov. Andrew Cuomo in the latest push for a bill that would open state financial aid to students in the country illegally after it was narrowly defeated. Supporters of the Dream Act met with Cuomo for nearly an hour and came away encouraged they have his support as budget talks continue. Assemblyman Felix Ortiz, a Brooklyn Democrat who attended the meeting, said the Senate and Assembly must come to agreement on how to pay for the initiative without using taxpayer money, a condition imposed by Senate Republicans. Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said the measure would cost $25 million a year if approved.

``The governor has stated that he would continue to push to help

ensure that the Dream Act become a reality,'' Ortiz said.

New York Governor-elect Andrew Cuomo speaks to supporters at the Sheraton New York on election night

Sen. Jose Peralta, a Queens Democrat and sponsor of the bill, proposed using unclaimed Minimum Wage Reimbursement Credits to fund the Dream Act. The credit was proposed last year when the state increased the minimum wage. The Legislature agreed to give a tax credit to businesses that employ teenagers to help quell fears that an increase in the minimum wage would hurt businesses. A spokesman for Peralta said that Wal-Mart, which employ workers at minimum wage, has publicly said it has no intention of applying for the tax credit. ``If the governor is talking about working with us, we have to help the governor in finding a way to pay for it,'' Peralta said.-AP


Immigration Post

March 28, 2014

India Post 45

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Was attorney ineffective in Kovacs v. United States?

I

n Kovacs v. United States, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversed a lower district court's decision denying a writ of error coram nobis to vacate a 1999 guilty plea to misprision of felony on the ground that his lawyer rendered ineffective assistance. While the outcome of the Second Circuit's decision is extremely beneficial for the petitioner Stephen Kovacs, who would otherwise suffer adverse immigration consequences, it does not appear that his attorney Robert Fink rendered ineffective assistance. When Kovacs, a lawful permanent resident, took the guilty plea for misprision of felony in 1999 it was not considered a crime involving

Cyrus D. Mehta moral turpitude, and would not have then resulted in adverse immigration consequences. Indeed, after taking the plea in 1999, Kovacs, an Australian national, continued to travel internationally without incident when in 2009 immigration officials questioned his

The writ of coram nobis is an extraordinary remedy that is sought to correct errors, such as a criminal conviction, based on the following three factors: 1) there are circumstances compelling such action to achieve justice, 2) sound reasons exist for failure to seek ap-

Kovacs' key argument for why he deserved to be granted the writ of coram nobis is that his attorney at that time, when he took the guilty plea for misprision of felony, was ineffective under Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984). ability to reenter the country on the ground that misprision of felony is considered a crime of moral turpitude.

propriate earlier relief, and 3) the petitioner continues to suffer legal consequences from his conviction that may be remedied by

Police rescue 100 people held in 'stash' house CHICAGO: US police has rescued more than 100 suspected illegal immigrants believed to have been held against their will in a filthy Texas "stash" house. While the 94 men, 14 women and two children discovered in the house were tired and hungry, they did not appear to be seriously injured. A pregnant woman was taken to hospital for evaluation.

"It's a classic sign of a smuggling... operation in which people are treated like animals, more so than human beings," Houston police spokesman John Cannon told reporters. Five suspected human smugglers were arrested and federal immigration agents were processing the people found behind the locked doors and windows of a cramped, two-bedroom bungalow.

Many had been held for anywhere from days to weeks - the men forced to strip down to their underwear to deter them from escaping - and will likely end up being deported, local media reported. At least eight of the immigrants were Mexican, including three minors, the Mexican Foreign Ministry said. The Consulate General of Mexico in Houston was providing the immigrants consular assistance. Police discovered the stash house after they were contacted by relatives of a missing woman and her two young children. They opened the door to a "sea of people" and the stench of human waste, Cannon said. "The smell and the conditions are just awful," Cannon said. "There's no hot water in the house, there is a toilet that partially works, one bathroom -- one bathroom for an excess of 100 people." Hundreds of chickens found on the property were believed to be used for illegal cock-fighting. -AFP

granting the writ. See Foont v. United States, 93 F.3d 76, 79 (2d Cir. 1996). Kovacs' key argument for why he deserved to be granted the writ of coram nobis is that his attorney at that time, when he took the guilty plea for misprision of felony, was ineffective under Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984). A claim of Strickland ineffectiveness involves a demonstration that: 1) the defense counsel's performance was objectively unreasonable; and 2) the deficient performance prejudiced the defense. The Second Circuit agreed that Fink's representation of Kovacs, when he took the guilty plea for misprision of felony, was ineffective under the Strickland test. The Court relied on United States v. Couto, 311 F.3d 179, 188 (2d Cir. 2002), which held that an affirma-

tive misrepresentation of the deportation consequences of a guilty plea fell outside the range of professional competence and thus met the Strickland test. There is, however, surprisingly no discussion in the Court's decision on why Fink's assistance of Kovacs was ineffective in 1999. It was only in 2006 when the Board of Immigration Appeals in Matter of Robles, 24 I& N Dec. 22 (BIA 2006) determined that a misprision of felony conviction under 18 U.S.C. §4 was a crime involving moral turpitude. In 1999, when Kovacs took the misprision plea, the BIA's holding in Matter of Sloan, 12 I&N Dec. 840 (A.G. 1968, BIA 1966), established that misprision of felony was not a crime involving moral turpitude. Cont'd on Page 46

PRADEEP ROY-SINGH B.A. LL.B. M.B.A. J.D. Attorney-at-Law

Former Assistant StateÂ’s Attorney

Civil & Criminal Litigation Felonies, Misdemeanors, Inc DUI 1 Personal Injury, Business, Divorce etc. 1 Property Tax for Commercial Properties 1 1

http://www.proy-singh.com

2335 W. Devon Ave., Suite 204, Tel: 773-381-1820 Chicago, IL 60659


Immigration Post

46 India Post

March 28, 2014

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Was attorney ineffective in Kovacs v. United States? Cont'd from Page 45

Matter of Sloan was only overruled by Matter of Robles many years later! Robles also retroactively applied to non-citizens previously convicted of misprision of felony. Any competent and diligent attorney in 1999 could have relied on Matter of Sloan in advising the non-citizen client to take a plea for misprision for felony as it did not have adverse deportation

cuit held that such conduct is not inherently base, vile or depraved to be considered morally turpitudinous. Even if a Circuit Court has overruled a BIA decision, it would only be inapplicable within the jurisdiction of that Circuit Court, which in Robles-Urrea is the Ninth Circuit, but the overruled BIA decision is still applicable everywhere else in the country. The grant of a writ of coram

The grant of a writ of coram nobis is undoubtedly a wonderful outcome for Kovacs whose circumstances were very sympathetic, but the question is whether his attorney was ineffective in 1999, and affirmatively misrepresented the deportation consequences at that time. To make this more bizarre, the Ninth Circuit in Robles-Urrea v. Holder, 678 F.3d 702 (9th Cir.2012), ultimately overturned the BIA in the same case by holding that misprision is not categorically a crime involving moral turpitude because it does not require a specific intent to conceal the felony, but only knowledge of the felony. Therefore, based upon an analysis of minimal conduct necessary to be implicated under the misprision statute, the Ninth Cir-

nobis is undoubtedly a wonderful outcome for Kovacs whose circumstances were very sympathetic, but the question is whether his attorney was ineffective in 1999, and affirmatively misrepresented the deportation consequences so as to be judged to have rendered ineffective assistance. This did not appear to be the case on the part of his attorney under Matter of Sloan, the precedential decision at that time. Moreover, the holding in Matter of Sloan is still considered good

law in the Ninth Circuit. Perhaps there may have been some sort of strategic collusion here that is not readily apparent to an objective reader of the decision. Fink may have wanted to help his former client and did not come in the way. The government also may not have wanted to impede the retroactive applicability of Matter of Robles. When an attorney's incompetence is not so clear cut, the noncitizen affected by the criminal conviction may consider seeking alternative remedies such as challenging the retroactive holding of the BIA. It may sometimes be impermissible for an agency to make a retroactive ruling that affects reasonable reliance interests. See Heckler v. Community Health Servs. of Crawford County, Inc., 467 U.S. 51, 60 n.12 (1984), Miguel-Miguel v. Gonzales, 500 F.3d 941, 950-953 (9th Cir. 2007), Lehman v. Burnley, 866 F.2d 33, 37-38 (2d Cir. 1989). If the plea occurred before the passage of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRIRA), then non-citizen LPRs who have been convicted of crimes involving moral turpitude can still be admitted if their trips overseas were brief, casual and innocent. See Vartelas v. Holder, 132 S. Ct. 1479 (2012). If the conviction oc-

curred after the passage of IIRIRA, then a non-citizen may still seek a waiver under INA 212(h) to overcome the inadmissibility caused by the crime of moral turpitude. This is not to suggest that noncitizens should be reluctant to seek to vacate their criminal convictions based on ineffective assistance of counsel. In Padilla v. Kentucky, 130 S. Ct. 1473 (2010), the Supreme Court allowed a noncitizen's plea to be vacated upon

sequences of the criminal plea, as was the case in Kovacs, rather than fail to provide any advice. Still, that advice ought to have been wrong before an ineffective assistance claim can pass muster. While an attorney who is found to have rendered ineffective assistance in the criminal context will likely not be disciplined, one would not want to be publicly found by a Court of Appeals to have been incompetent and rendered ineffec-

An attorney, besides being expected to thoroughly research the prevailing law, ought not to be expected to gaze into a crystal ball to determine whether the law can change many years later in order to avoid being ambushed by an ineffective finding! ineffective assistance of counsel when his attorney did not advise him about the immigration consequences of his plea. Later, in Chaidez v. United States, 133 S. Ct. 1103 (2013), the Supreme Court clarified that Padilla would not be applied retroactively to criminal cases that were already final when Padilla was decided. However, Chaidez's preclusion against retroactivity is inapplicable when the attorney affirmatively misadvised the noncitizen about the immigration con-

tive assistance several years later just because the law changed retroactively. An attorney, besides being expected to thoroughly research the prevailing law at a given point in time, ought not to be expected to gaze into a crystal ball to determine whether the law can change many years later in order to avoid being ambushed by an ineffective finding! * Cyrus D Mehta, may be contacted at 212-425-0555 or info@cyrusmehta.com

India, Bangladesh to strengthen Woman gets 10-year sentence in immigration scheme security cooperation NEW DELHI: India and Bangladesh have decided to further strengthen security cooperation between them and resolve all issues related to granting visa-onarrival. In a meeting between

Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Md Shahidul Haque and Home Secretary Anil Goswami, both sides appreciated the excellent cooperation that exists between the two countries in the area of security, particularly between the two bor-

der forces for an increasingly effective border management. "Both sides reiterated their commitment to take the existing cooperation to a higher level," a statement issued by the Bangladesh High Commission here said. Official sources said Haque raised the issues relating to granting visa-on-arrival facility to Bangladesh nationals and urged Goswami to resolve as early as possible the problems being faced in its implementation. While recognizing that the number of killing along the IndoBangladesh border has reduced significantly in recent time, the Bangladesh Foreign Secretary expressed hope that the sustained efforts taken by the Indian side would help bring down the killing of Bangladesh nationals at the border to zero. The Home Secretary reassured Haque that BSF is exercising utmost restraint in this regard. -PTI

ELIZABETH, N.J.: A New Jersey woman who posed as an attorney to steal roughly $100,000 from more than two dozen people who were living in the country illegally is now headed to prison. Union County prosecutors say

Maritza Chavez, of Elizabeth

46-year-old Maritza Chavez of Elizabeth received a 10-year sentence and also must pay restitution, though that amount has not been determined. She had pleaded guilty in January to two separate indictments containing 26 counts overall of theft by deception. Prosecutors say Chavez represented herself as an attorney and made empty promises to help them obtain citizenship papers. Chavez told clients she would file documents with federal immigration officials on their behalf and charged anywhere from $80 to $6,000 per client. Prosecutors say the fees were for ``legal services'' that she wasn't trained to perform. AP


Datebook

March 28, 2014

India Post 47

www.indiapost.com

NEW JERSEY

NEW YORK

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

Upcoming

ILLINOIS

Upcoming

Upcoming

Upcoming

Upcoming

Sat, Mar 29 • Hollywood Bhangra - LAs Bi-Monthly Bhangra Night

• J K Yog Satsang and Bal Mukund Hindi Classes are held every 2nd and 4rth Sunday of Month

Venue: Gladstones Restaurant, 17300 Pa-

Chicago Satsang Information: J K Yog, Chicago - Swami Mukundananda Venue: Clarion Inn/Waterford Banquets, Board Room, 933 South Riverside Drive, Elmhurst, IL 60126 Time: 3:30pm-5:30pm Contact: Ajay & Arti Chandhok @ 630-561-4807 Website: www.jkyog.org

Fri, Mar 28 • Sangam 2014 Venue: The Hindu Temple Society Of North America, 45-57 Bowne St, NJ 11355 Time: 6:00pm

Sun, Mar 30

Fri, Mar 28 • Sangam 2014 - NY Venue: The Hindu Temple Society Of North America, 45-57 Bowne St, New York, NY 11355 Time: 6:00 pm Contact: 347-989-6104

• Hriday Sandhya in South Jersey near Philadelphia

Sat, Mar 29 • Zakir Hussain and The Mas-

Venue: Harrington Middle School Theater - South Jersey, NJ, 514 Mt Laurel Rd, Mt Laurel, NJ 08054 Time: 2:00 pm Contact: 6092062310

ters of Percussion

Sat, Apr 5,6 • India Fair 2014 Venue: NJ Convention & Expo Center, 97,Sunfield Ave, Raritan Center, NJ 08837 Time: 11: 00 am Contact: 609-937-2800

Venue: The Theater at Madison Square Garden, Seventh Avenue between 31st and 33rd Streets, New York, NY 10001 Time : 8:00 pm Contact : 866-858-0008

Thu, Apr 3 • DJ Rekha Presents Basement Bhangra Venue: Le Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecker Street, New York, NY 10012 Time: 08:00 pm

Sat, Mar 29 • Hilarious Gujarati Drama Venue: Carrington Hall, 1201 Brewster Avenue, Redwood City, CA 94062 Time: 11:00 am Contact: 510-304-2903

cific Coast Hwy, Los Angeles, CA 90272 Time: 10:30 pm

Sat, Apr 5 • Sur Mandir Geeton Ka Safar - A musical Journey Venue: Cabrillo High School Auditorium, 2001 Santa Fe Avenue, Long Beach, CA 90810 Time: 5 pm Contact: 626-354-5036

Sat, May 3 • Udit Narayan - Alka Yagnik Live In Concert Venue: Jordan High School Auditorium, 6500 Atlantic Ave, Long Beach, CA 90805 Time: 6:00 pm Contact: 310-715-3030

April 5,6 • Brahma Kumaris Silicon

ATLANTA Upcoming

1st and 3rd Sunday of Month • Chicago Children's Bal Mukund Character Building Program and Hindi Literacy Classes Venue: Vogelei Center, 650 W. Higgins Road, Hoffmann Estates, IL 60192 (Next to Nissan Dealership) Contact: Ajay & Arti Chandhok @ 630-561-4807 Website: www.jkyog.org/bal-mukund

Valley Meditation Center has organized a special talk on "Make Mind Your Best Friend"

Sat, Apr 12 • TAGG Ugadi 2014 Celebration

Venue: 821 Anacapa Court, Milpitas,

Venue: Ahimsa Hall ,Vedic Center, 520

CA 95035

Bethel Rd, Mauldin, SC 29662

Sun, Apr 13

Time : 10:00 am to 12:00 noon

Time: 4:00 pm

• Music Program For Blind Foundation Of India

Contact: www.bksiliconvalley.org

June 5th to 8th • Ugadi Celebrations Prana Prathishta Mahotsavam of Anjaneya Swami, Ayyappa Swami, Durga Matha, Nava Graha's and Sri Kanyaka Parameswari (Vasavi Matha)

Sun, Apr 16 • Alka Yagnik Udit Narayan 100 Years Of Celebration Venue: SAtlanta Symphony Hall, 1280

Venue: Avery Coonley Performing Arts Center 1400 Maple Avenue, Downers Grove, IL 60515 Time : 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm Contact: 630-548-5531

Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30303 Time: 9:00 pm

Mondays and Fridays

Venue: Hindu Temple of St Louis, 725

Sat, Apr 19 • Vaisakhi Celebration 2014

Weidman Road, St. Louis, MO 63011

Venue: Ashiana Global Mall, 5675 Jimmy

• Free ESL - English as Second Language Classes Where: Metropolitan Asian Family Services

Time: 6 pm

Carter Blvd, Norcross, GA 30071

Contact: (636) - 230-3300

Time: 7:00pm

Venue: 9015 N Milwaukee Ave, Niles, IL, Time: 10:30am to 12:30pm Contact: 773-465-3105


48 India Post

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March 28, 2014

ARCHANA ASTHANA India Post News Service

SARATOGA, CA: A wondrous locale, made even more so by the haunting strains of Pandit Habib Khan's sitar - a musical and magical soiree played out at the Villa Montalvo Arts Center the past weekend. This venue has staged the best of the best, including the maestro, Pandit Ravi Shankar, in his farewell concert, with Anoushka Shankar, in 2001, and was the perfect setting for Khan Saheb to weave his melodious magic. The sophisticated ambience of the venue, the tastefully decorated stage and the harmony of the music virtuoso with his sitar, the tabla and the appreciative audience created an evening that filled up the senses. An accomplished artist, teacher and founder of Saraswati Temple and Gurukul,

Khan Saheb mesmerized, enthralled and entertained a packed audience with his skillful and dexterous manipulations of the sitar strings. Not only did he present a quality and

enjoyable concert, he engaged and interacted with the audience with his wit and humor, establishing an easy rapport. He made many of the concepts of Indian classical music accessible to the aficionados

Khan Saheb continued with a romantic Thumri in Raag Pahadi where the sitar emoted the sensual elements of a lover pining for her mate. He then transitioned to a devotional embodiment of Thumri with "Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram".

and uninitiated alike by explaining the scales, the beat structure (the "taal" and the "bols"), and the various vocal techniques, and demonstrating the same in his melodies. He impressed with his renditions of several different formats of classical and semi classical sitar playing, expounding on the rhythm and beats. Ably supported on the tabla by the talented Vishal Nagar, the duo demonstrated the intricacies of the concept and technique of teen taal, a 16 beat composition. Khan Saheb continued with a romantic Thumri in Raag Pahadi where the sitar emoted the sensual elements of a lover pining for her mate. He then transitioned to a devotional embodiment of Thumri with "Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram". Cont'd on Page 52


India Post 49

March 28, 2014 www.indiapost.com

Jadoo will be IFFLA's Closing Night Gala film India Post News Service

LOS ANGELES, CA: The Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles (IFFLA) has announced its 2014 lineup of narrative and documentary features and short films for this year's festival. The impressive program reflects the rich diversity of Indian cinema, as well as the future of Indian filmmaking, with cutting-edge filmmakers and emerging voices bringing their acclaimed films to Los Angeles. The festival is widely recognized as the premiere showcase of groundbreaking Indian cinema

globally. Celebrating its 12th year, IFFLA will run April 8-13 at ArcLight Hollywood in Los Angeles, the festival's home since its inception. Jadoo, a delightful and delicious exploration of family bonds amidst two feuding brothers' restaurants in England, will screen as the festival's Closing Night Gala. Jadoo is written and directed by IFFLA alum Amit Gupta, and first premiered at the 2013 Berlinale. It features a wonderful ensemble cast that includes Kulvinder Ghir, Amara Karan, Harish Patel, Tom Mison, and Madhur Jaffrey. The red-carpet screening will be followed by an exclusive after-party at Nirvana-Bombay Palace in Beverly Hills. As previously announced, IFFLA will open with Jeffrey D.

Brown's Sold, produced by Jane Charles and executive produced by Emma Thompson. IFFLA 2014 presents more than 33 films, including three world premieres, six North American pre-

mieres, six U.S. premieres, and 16 Los Angeles premieres. The films feature 10 different languages, from Hindi to Marathi, to Russian to Bengali. Additionally, IFFLA supports American, Australian, British, Canadian, and European Diaspora filmmakers from nine different countries telling their stories. "I'm thrilled and proud that IFFLA's line-up this year includes an especially diverse range of cinematic experiences, covering many regions of India and the Diaspora," said IFFLA's Artistic Director Jasmine Jaisinghani. "We would like to thank our Programming Advisor in India, Uma Da Cunha, for helping our programming team source some of these exceptional films." Program highlights include: the North American premiere of Anurag Kashyap's latest, Ugly, an intense, masterfully directed psychological thriller that premiered in the 2013 Director's Fortnight

section of Cannes; Liar's Dice, the remarkable directorial debut of South Indian actress Geetu Mohandas that premiered at this year's Sundance Film Festival; Anup Singh's latest feature Qissa:

The Tale Of A Lonely Ghost, starring Irrfan Khan, winner of NETPAC Award at the Toronto International Film Festival and Dioraphte Award at the International Film Festival Rotterdam; the Audience Award winner at the 2013 Slamdance Film Festival

Hank and Asha, an exploratory, romantic look at two people bonding in the digital age by newcomer James E. Duff; Nagraj Manjule's Fandry, a highly praised debut feature for its multilayered emotion and realism on the subject of caste discrimination; Brahmin Bulls starring Roshan Seth and Sendhil Ramamurthy as an estranged father and son unexpectedly brought together to confront the family's past; and Siddharth, a nuanced look at a family whose son goes missing, by lauded Canadian director and IFFLA alum Richie Mehta. The festival's feature documentary competition includes an eclectic mix of films from established and upcoming filmmakers that consider India's unique traditions and dynamic future. The films in-

clude: the world premiere of The Auction House, an intimate and funny look at two brothers trying to keep their anachronistic family business going in the digital age; festival favorite Powerless, which depicts intense struggles over electricity in a mid-size Indian city; Faith Connections, IFFLA alum Pan Nalin's beautiful and rare look at the Kumbh Mela; and the National Award-winning Shepherds Of Paradise, about an arduous, mountainous trek through an animal drive in the Kashmiri winter. The popular Bollywood by Night series returns this year with Bombay Talkies and Monsoon Shootout. Premiering at last year's Cannes Film Festival, Bombay Talkies is a quartet of short films that celebrates 100 years of Indian cinema. The omnibus film features work by four of India's most exciting contemporary directors: Karan Johar, Dibakar Banerjee, Zoya Akhtar, and Anurag Kashyap, as well as a

stellar cast that includes Amitabh Bachchan, Rani Mukerji, and Katrina Kaif. Monsoon Shootout is a thrilling debut by IFFLA alum writer/director Amit Kumar about how a split-second decision made by a rookie police officer has rippling effects in his life and the lives of those around him. The shorts competition showcases a diverse selection of 15

films that include narrative, documentary, experimental, and animated works. Highlights of this year's program include Academy Award速 shortlisted Kush; Sundance award winner Love.Love.Love. and the world premiere of acclaimed director Umesh Kulkarni's The Fly.


50 India Post

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March 28, 2014 www.indiapost.com

Remembering my guruji, Khushwant Singh ASHIM CHOUDHURY

T

he grand old man of Indian writing was a friend of sorts to all people whose lives he came into. To me he was a little more. No, his hospitality never extended beyond a cola or plain water. He never shared his

firing incident in a famous God man's compound in Bangalore - or was it Hyderabad? - that was making headlines. Khushwant, curious as ever asked me if I had some inside news. Then to mine, and my friend's shock and horror he said,

a heavy price for this. I was with UNHCR then. Khushwant readily agreed to do a shoot for a film on refugees that I was making, where he spoke as a former refugee from Pakistan. Later, I had taken my boss Irene Khan, to meet him at

Khushwant wearing the UNHCR shirt

famous scotch with me even though on one occasion I'd bought a bottle of Black Label for him that was never delivered. It was some 20 years back, in 1994, when I first met Khushwant Singh for my first cover story - a profile of the writer in Gentleman. His book, 'Not a Nice man to Know' was just out then. When I went to give him a copy of the magazine he was delighted. 'A Nice Man to Know', the title of my story had charmed him. And thus opened his door to me - the door on which was written the famous line, 'Do not ring the bell if you're not expected!' Many a diplomat and neta had to turn back from that door for having arrived without an appointment. To me that door was opened often with a radiant smile. Very often he was sitting on his sofa, his legs outstretched on the cane moora by the fireplace. His wife was always present in the room whenever we had met, and then she was gone. I continued to visit him, and he appeared lonely. Once, I took along a curious friend to meet him. The friend was disappointed by the simplicity of his home. Those days there was a

"That man (god man) is a gandu‌" The rest of it, told in Hindi, is unprintable. Translated, it would read, "He buggers and gets buggered as well." That was unadulterated Khushwant Singh. He never cloaked his words in the veneer of decency. But to even suggest that he was not a decent man would be unthinkable. The image of a debauched man frolicking with wine and women was a picture he had deliberately created to his legion of fans running into millions. Yes, it is true he reveled in the company of women and he loved his evening tipple. Many were fooled into believing he was a debauched man. Even I had to pay

his home. They were an instant hit. I later convinced Khushwant to do a poster for UNHCR to which, he again readily agreed. By the time the poster was to be made Irene had left for UNHCR headquarters in Geneva and I had a new African boss. He hauled me up one fine afternoon for giving unsound advice on the poster. "Ashim your advice for featuring Khushwant Singh on a UN Refugee poster was not good," he had said. I was dumbfounded, but defended myself rather poorly. Later, when I asked him how he had come to such a conclusion, he produced a lady colleague. She and a few of her cronies were

giggling, "Oh everyone knows about his drinking and womanizing." I was too disgusted for words. How I wished they were a little better read and told them so. The poster project with Khushwant was dropped. I was embarrassed. Khushwant had spent an entire afternoon doing a photo-shoot wearing a UNHCR tee shirt! My visits to him became fewer. A few years later, out of UNHCR, I was interviewing him again for a news channel. He had just been given the 'Honest Man of the Year' award instituted by Sulabh International's Bindeshwar Pathak. The citation also carried a cash prize of a million rupees. It wasn't a small amount then. Among many other questions I asked him what he intended doing with the money. I was expecting an exalted well thought out response, maybe of donating it to some noble cause, when pat came Khushwant's response with a loud guffaw. "I'm going to spoil myself with that money!" Who else could give such a disarmingly candid answer like that? Khushwant Singh, above all else, was an honest man. Not surprisingly, he tore many a reputation to shreds in what used to be a delightfully malicious column.

The writer with Khushwant Singh in Kasauli

The author of over thirty books, some of them classics like 'Train to Pakistan', 'I shall not hear the

Health hazard

I

was one of the chief subeditors in Hindustan Times when Khushwant Singh was Editor (1980-83). He used to drop in at the Editorial Desk in the evening to find out what the paper in the morning would look like. That was too

early to tell, so we would describe to him the stories which were available at that time. Once when I was night duty chief, he came in and I told him about a story which I intended to use as anchor. It was a typical Health story from a western news agency

Nightingale' and 'Delhi' did not take his own reputation very seriously. He also had the uncommon ability to laugh at himself and his community; the result, a clutch of joke books mostly on sardars. But though an agnostic he personally considered 'The History of Sikhs' - a scholarly work - one his best books. Was he a helpful person? In my case, he twice recommended me to people when I was out of a job. When both attempts failed, he laughed wistfully saying that he no longer had clout. When he was a Director at Penguin he also reviewed my manuscript and gave me some useful tips, one of them, asking me to cut down on descriptions. Alas, when 'The Sergeant's Son' was out in January 2013 I could not personally hand him a copy of my debut novel. By then he was quite ill and the caretaker who took the phone said he did not meet people any more. I still took a chance one evening and the caretaker was kind enough to allow me in. Just as I was to be in his presence a young lady imperiously blocked my way. "He does not see anyone," his granddaughter said haughtily. Like a nervous school boy I held my book and said, I wanted to personally present him a copy.

which listed a number of diseases which reportedly occurred as a consequence of adultery. Khushwant spread out his hands and with a straight face said, "Nothing has happened to me!" - Vinod Dhawan

"Tell him my name, Ashim Choudhury." She relented a bit. Looking in his direction near the fireplace, hidden from my view, she asked loudly, "Are you expecting anybody." She repeated the question. Apparently, he nodded negatively. "Sorry," said the young lady, "I cannot allow you in." It was one of my saddest days. I was so close to my guruji and yet so far. And now, he is gone forever. (Author of The Sergeant's Son;blog:www.ashimch13.blogspot.in)


March 28, 2014

52 India Post www.indiapost.com

Habib Khan Magic Maestro enthralls with soul-stirring recital other interesting testimony to the inspiring nature of Khan Saheb's music was revealed by a first time participant to his concert, Marjan Fariba, a community member, educator and realtor, who was so moved by the purity of the music, that she made a large contribution to its cause, even though it was not a fundraising event. In the fast paced world of today, where traditional art forms may be sidelined by the ever-popular, feet stomping, heart thumping entrants, Pandit Habib Khan has contributed much to their revival and enduring power in the younger generation in the Bay Area. Vinita Kumar, a long time disciple, and herself a talented performer, commented that "her family did not just learn music, they learned culture". A world without music is like a body without a soul, and we definitely need to reconnect with this basic need. Khan Saheb brought the soul and

Cont'd from Page 48

Spirited Jugalbandi The music savvy audience was treated to the finale which was a spirited jugalbandi showcasing sheer mastery of the two artists with their instruments. Each was allowed his momentous crescendo punctuated with masterful integration of the two instruments speaking the same language in different ways. Vishal Nagar, in his debut performance with Khan Saheb was superb as the accompanying tabla player. His youthful and robust playing was in perfect harmony and the two demonstrated great on-stage chemistry. This joyful celebration of the arts and artists by an appreciative audience ended with an elegant champagne and wine reception in the adjoining solarium. In a conversation, Khan Saheb reiterated his love for Indian classical music and a desire to inculcate the same in his young students,

Akshay brings the beard back to Bollywood India Post News Service

A

kshay Kumar has gained the new title of 'Hottest beard in Bollywood', by leading the comeback of the bearded look. He has recently been spotted with an unkempt and smoldering beard, as seen on George Clooney, during the awards season. Of course, he also never forgets his signature checkered shirt - the two make a fine combination! His 'salt and pepper' beard, grown for his role in the upcoming movie Gabbar, has had a very influential impact on fashion conscious young men of today with reports that some are resorting to replicate this on trend style. In addition to being a respected ambassador of Indian cinema and an on-trend

fashion icon, Akshay Kumar is preparing for the launch of his Martial Arts Institute for Women, in Mumbai this May. His next release, 'Holiday: Soldier Is Never Off Duty', is an action thriller remake of the 2012 hit Tamil film Thuppakki and is written and directed by A.R. Murugadoss (Thuppakki, Ghajini). It features a stellar cast including Sonakshi Sinha and veteran Govinda in a supporting role.

who, he hopes to train to mastery. All his disciples embody the vision of the Gurukul and work tireless hours to improve their skills and hope to reach to the level of their Guru. Khan Saheb has had numerous concerts as a traditional, as well as a fusion artist incorporating the jazz form; and has played alongside his students, or allowed them to be showcased. He commented that the name of his music conservatory just came to him and he received it and implemented it as an offering to Goddess Saraswati, who plays the veena or the sitar. Pandit Habib Khan was honored with the Certificate of Appreciation by GOPIO (Global Organization for People of Indian Origin), presented by Ajay Jain Bhutoria during this concert. An-

much, much more to this amazing evening. Special thanks to the behind the stage coordinators of the event and reception go to Madhu Ranganathan and Rebecca Jepsen.


Philosophy

March 28, 2014

India Post 53

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Page Sponsored by Sahanis COLIN DRAKE

A

reader was asking me about desire, and its nature, to which I replied: Most desires stem from the one (as does everything!) desire which can be expressed from three perspectives: Positively, as the desire to be happy. Neutrally, as the desire to be at peace. Negatively, as the desire to avoid suffering. All of which are achieved by Awakening ... discovering one's essential Self ...Pure Awareness! That is Consciousness knowing Itself when at rest. There are also desires for pleasure and interesting experiences stemming from the desire to enjoy the physical world. That is Consciousness enjoying Itself when in manifestation (in motion). Thus desires stem from the function of the body/mind as an instrument through which Consciousness can know (and enjoy) Itself in both modes when at rest and in motion; and from the necessity to keep this instrument in good shape ‌ that is fed, sheltered, clothed etc. Following from this is the natural desire to help create more instruments. Alas, when one is misidentified as the body/mind, or ego, the foundation of these is misunderstood (as is just about everything!) and they can spin out of control. For in this case one identifies JILLELLAMUDI AMMA

A

mma used to say whatever she said was out of her experience. Her sayings are direct, down to earth practical. Here are a few: Responsibility Responsibility is itself suffering. If we do not think "I am doing", but rather I am merely an instrument", then even twice the amount of work is painless responsibility. Happiness Happiness arises in the mind, not in the possessions. It is the mind that thinks, "I have", or "I lack". It is the mind that wants; and it is the mind that feels satisfied with whatever is available. A mind, which thinks otherwise, experiences suffering. To want anything that is not available is sorrow. Contentment is happiness. Worship Although we dimly perceive that there is ONE which is infinite, we cannot grasp it with our minds and worship IT; but we can perceive IT in a limited form and offer worship. So form is necessary. When you worship a form or symbol and deeply contemplate, how can the feeling for your own divinity not grow in you? This is

oneself as being a separate object (in a universe of such) and identifying others as such. Then the happiness (and peace) that is always present, at the core of our being, is masked by identifying with one's imaginary self-image and others with the 'images' we have concocted of them. Thus we start searching externally for happiness by improving our self-image, acquiring more wealth, possessions, status, power, position, etc.

Colin Drake

This could well result in wishing to escape from this nightmarish 'reality' by indulging in intoxicants and becoming addicted to these. It also can create the strong desire to 'transcend' the day to day worldly struggle by acquiring so much wealth and power that one is financially 'secure' and is (seemingly) free from manipulation by others. From this stems the 'dog eat dog' world that we appear to live in when identified as a separate object in a world of such.

in the previous paragraphs. Another person brought up cellular memory which, it was claimed, determined our behaviour. Whilst not denying cellular memory, to say that we are necessarily governed by it is to say that we are governed by our past and our physical bodies. However, when seen as fleeting objects coming and going in Awareness they lose their power over us. In fact some nondualist would go further and describe them as illusory,

All desires are fulfilled by discovering one's essential Self

To be rooted is perhaps

Desires stem from the function of the body/mind as an instrument through which Consciousness can know (and enjoy) Itself in both modes when at rest and in motion; and from the necessity to keep this instrument in good shape

- Simone Weil

the most important and least recognized need of the human soul.

Anticipate the difficult by managing the easy. - Lao Tzu

This naturally leads to much unnecessary mental suffering leading to the search for happiness being intensified, which leads to more suffering and thus the vicious cycle is perpetuated. It also entails relating to others as objects (for that is what we think they are) through the filter of the image we have created of them. This will necessarily lead to misunderstanding and mistreatment (of them) creating further unnecessary suffering.

This continual struggle exacerbates the dark side of human nature - that of greed, exploitation, indiscriminate lust, violence, etc. I recently happened upon a discussion of this 'dark side' in which I said that it was an illusion caused by ignorance. That is to say that it is an ephemeral facet of our nature caused by misidentification, as discussed above. For this I was castigated by those pointing out the evils in the world, which I have also addressed

which they are if you define illusory as 'ephemeral'. Thus, when correctly identified with, and as, Pure Awareness memories just come and go as we don't identify with them. Also desires arise from the wish to enjoy, and experience, life but they do not overwhelm us as Awareness is always at peace whatever manifests (or not as the case may be) within it. Books, articles & poems of Colin Drake can be found at http:// www.lulu.com/spotlight/ColinDrake

There are no shortcuts to

what happens in the worship of form. I don't mean that one gets that result only in the worship of a form or symbol. Whatever the activity cooking meals, farming-if that same 'Bhava' (one pointed attitude) is maintained, the result will be the same. In all kinds of worship, the result depends on the 'Bhava' one has. Ultimately, one should have the same 'Bhava' no matter what activity one is engaged in.

in courts etc., is all worldly and that 'Sadhana' is something different from all things. If you do everything as His work and as He would have you do, what else is there to be desired? Love When love becomes primary, it is not possible for there to be a single person who is not loved. You love death, you will love life love alone will be important."

mother and child. The mother bears patiently the lapses of the child. The child is never at fault in the mother's eyes, however blameworthy he may seem to others. Such a love is found in a mother's heart and nowhere else. Do you think that my love will fade away simply because you don't come into my room and see me? As if love were intensified by embracing the four legs of my cot,

Be gentle to all and

Sadhana Whatever you do in your daily routine with attention and devotion is 'Sadhana'. You often hear it said that That (the Real) is real and This (the world) is an illusion. I say that This is also real. You think that teaching children, providing for the household, defending clients

It is the nature of true love to remain constant in all circumstances. The loves of the world are changing; a word or a deed is enough to alter these. If the other person does not act according to your wish, you get angry. But the love I speak of doesn't change. Such love is found only between

- Beverly Sills Whatever there be of progress in life comes not through adaptation but through daring. - Henry Miller

stern with yourself. - Saint Teresa of Avila Very often a change of self is needed more than a change of scene. - Katha Upanishad

To want anything that is not available is sorrow Whatever the activity - cooking meals, farming-if that same 'Bhava' (one pointed attitude) is maintained, the result will be the same. In all kinds of worship, the result depends on the 'Bhava' one has.

any place worth going.

What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality. - Plutarch Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is Jillellamudi Amma

or by moving about in my room! It is not correct to say that you have broken ties with your Mother (when you leave Jillellamudi); physical separation can never mean separation. When you are always remembering me, where is the separation?" Excerpted from www.motherofall.org

excellent in others belong to us as well. - Voltaire We build too many walls and not enough bridges. - Isaac Newton

You Insure all your Valuables, all are replaceable except YOU! So Insure yourself FIRST. Call Sahanis, (Arish, Priya or Shiv) for your Insurance needs 718- 271- 0453. Serving for last 35 yrs


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Demographic dividend - Is it an asset or liability? D SUBA CHANDRAN

S

ocieties such as Japan and few in Europe are considered to be ageing societies. Thanks to the increased healthcare, life expectancy of people has substantially increased. On the other hand, thanks also to the population control measures and child strategies, there is a thinning down of population at the lower levels. If a pyramid has to be built on age groups counting from 1-10, 11-20 and so on, certain countries such as Japan will have an inverted pyramid - with more people on 50-90 groups, than in 01-20, and 21-50 groups. While the first considered as children, adolescents and teens, the second from 20-50 is considered to be carrying the bulk of work load, income earning and hard working. In India, both at the national and sub-regional levels, the demographic pyramid will be bulkier in the middle level. Meaning, both

and "level playing field"? If the youth have to choose their own destiny, instead of being condescending and attempting to channelize their energy, they should be provided with all the right ingredients and strong base, and be allowed to decide their own future. Back to the original question: how to ensure that the youth bulge adds qualitative value and not just the numbers? First and foremost, a strong system of education from the beginning, starting from class one both in rural and urban areas has to be established. There is a big myth that the rural education is backward, while education system in the urban areas are advanced and better developed. When the focus is on quality education, it has to focus equally on both sectors - rural and urban. And there has to be a partner-

Like parent-teacher meetings in schools, there have to be a parent-political leader meeting in every community. It is ironic in many cases, the leaders would love to use the youth as their pawns, but will ensure their own children are well educated abroad, and earning in dollars and euros at the national and regional levels, the population belonging to 20-50 is the biggest. Hence, India along with few other countries in South Asia are considered to have a demographic dividend. There is a Youth Bulge in India. Undoubtedly. But the important question is whether this bulge is an asset or liability. How qualified is this bulge? Quantity - yes, but what about the quality? The above question is important - both at the national and regional levels in India. We may have a youth bulge; but how qualified that bulge is to take us forward? What measures need to be undertaken at the State and Society levels, to ensure that the youth bulge remains an asset and not turn into a liability? There have been discussions about "channelizing" the youth potential; this is essentially a negative approach with a condescending attitude towards the youth - as if they are misguided and taken wrong paths. Do our youth need to be "channelized"? Or do they be provided with "right opportunities"

ship between the State and Society. While the State has to ensure that there is adequate infrastructure in place, the society will have to ensure that there is work culture, especially amongst the teachers. It is easier for the Society to blame the State for the failure in educational structure, and accuse the system for being corrupt and inefficient. While it may very well be true, the hard reality is, neither the educational bureaucracy nor the teachers have been chosen from another planet! They are very much a part of us, and from our own society. Teachers and members of the educational bureaucracies consist of our brothers, cousins, sisters, fathers and mothers. Since teachers are considered in the line only after the mothers and fathers, they have a huge responsibility in ensuring that children are provided with right background and equipped with the required knowledge. This is where our school and college system of education has to keep itself cur-

rent and updated. The parents, on their part have to "parent" the children. Many of modern day problems, especially related to youth in our part of the world would amplify the growing parental crisis. Parenting is just not paying fees to schools and providing with food and shelter. How many of our parents really know what our children are doing in the schools and outside? The above focus on parents and teachers - are primarily due to their ability in being the primary agents of contribution and change amongst the youth. No other social institutions impacts positively as the parents and teachers do. Besides the education, the second major area that needs to be addressed is the politicization of youth by leaders and groups. Youths have to be politically aware, but should not become a ploy in the hands of individuals and groups. Since they are our future, we should let them choose their own, and not impose our past and present on them. Some of them would ultimately choose politics, as their career; but in our warped and immediate needs, we should not allow politics to jeopardize their career. Like parent-teacher meetings in schools, there have to be a parent-political leader meeting in every community. It is ironic in many cases, the leaders would love to use the youth as their pawns, but will ensure their own children are well educated abroad, and earning in dollars and euros. Finally, the State has to ensure, there is no negative environment that would seduce the youth from focusing on what they are supposed to - creating strong foundations for a future that they may want to choose. From drugs to terrorism, there are multiple evils, which the State will have to ensure that our youths do not fall prey to. The State will also have to ensure good governance. True, there is a demographic dividend in India. It is in every one's interest that this quantity becomes a quality and an asset. Every one of us at the State and Society levels have a responsibility in ensuring that our youth bulge does not become a liability. They are our future. Let us protect their present. The writer is Director, IPCS

India Post Won't fade away

T

he Congress harbors several non-performing assets which luckily will be discarded in the coming election. Many like the present Finance Minister P. Chidambaram have seen the writing on the wall and have decided not to contest. This however is no altruistic decision. Chidambaram had barely scraped through in the last General Election from Tamil Nadu and with the UPA's dismal show and poor image this time the certainty of defeat has persuaded him to stand down in favor of his son. So he has made a wise decision. The biggest non-performing asset of all times, Manmohan Singh, however is safe as his tenure in Rajya Sabha is secure for a few more years. He can take a back seat and would be happy not to be noticed. The case of the old men in BJP is however different. They are refusing to fade away because they see the party winning and they want a hand in the spoils. L.K. Advani is 86 but his ambition to be prime minister has not faded. Jaswant Singh is 76 and his best as a politician is behind him but he wants to fight the Lok Sabha election. There is a great controversy over his being denied ticket from his home base of Barmer in Rajasthan. These two stalwarts are the ideal candidates for a seat in Rajya Sabha as a reward for what they have done for the party in the past. But they need not be active as before and leave something for the next generation. Advani's main function these days seems to be to put hurdles in the way of Narendra Modi in his march towards leadership of a coalition to head the NDA in case of victory. Recently he created a great fuss over his desire to change his seat from Gandhinagar in Gujarat, from where he has won five times, to Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh. Perhaps he thinks that Modi's men in Gandhinagar would not cooperate and make his victory difficult. Another reason being trotted out is that the chief minister of Madhya Pradesh, Shivraj Singh Chauhan is Advani's protĂŠgĂŠ and he would easily win from there and also be able to project Chauhan as a rival of Modi for the prime ministership. Advani has tried all the tricks in the trade to be accepted as the prime ministerial candidate. In 2009 he was the PM candidate but the electorate rejected him and his party. Thereafter he tried to be more secular than the secular wallas by visiting Pakistan and praising Jinnah. The move fell flat and he was not only criticized in his own party but was even divested of the presidentship of the party. Today he has still not lost his ambition and hopes to do some damage if the NDA comes to power. Jaswant Singh is a respected scholar-politician and his dignity and demeanor command respect. He also wrote a book on Jinnah praising him and was expelled from the party for this reason. He doesn't fit in the ethos of the present day party and should not mind being relegated to the Rajya Sabha to spend the rest of his days as advisor to the party. His son is already in politics and he should leave it to the coming generation to shape things for the modern age. Advani camp followers are also seeking to put spokes in the wheels of Modi. Sushma Swaraj, Leader of the Legislature party in Lok Sabha, and Ananth Kumar, an influential leader of Karnataka BJP, are Advani camp followers and have little hope of gain if Modi becomes prime minister. So they are questioning the "humiliation" of Jaswant Singh. Sushma however had a positive point to make when she questioned the Lok Sabha ticket given to scam accused Sriramulu in Karnataka. It seems the new BJP has opened its doors to anybody who can win.


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'Southern Splendor' yet to come on track in AP HYDERABAD: Andhra Pradesh government is not ready to give up on the 'Southern Splendor' luxury train project though the Centre and the Ministry of Railways have been sitting on the proposal for close to a decade now. The state government is ready to rope in the Railways or its arm

our point to the central government and Ministry of Railways also and they have to revert back. "We have proposed that we will take it up as a package through a sort of a MoU between Railways and IRCTC...instead of tourism department alone taking up the burden of running this. We have

IRCTC comes on board then we are willing to extend it in our state." Explaining the problems, he said the Railways have put lot of haulage charges in operating it. "For example, Karnataka government which is running the luxury train 'Golden Chariot'...there is a heavy burden of the haulage

promotion of tourism not only in Andhra Pradesh but also in other southern states with Hyderabad as the hub. The Centre gave its clearance for the Rs 50 crore project on May 17, 2006 and the train was expected to hit the tracks in 2008. The Centre had also agreed to share Rs 10

crore out of the project cost while the balance was to be borne by the state. With bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh, the proposed train project will cover both Telangana and the residuary Andhra Pradesh and other southern states, the official added. -PTI

It is 'election tourism' season in Kerala

Indian Railway Catering Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), as a partner in the project so as to keep it moving, state tourism department officials said. "The proposed project - modeled on the famed 'Palace on Wheels' - has not been shelved," they said, adding we have made

communicated this to the Railways and are awaiting a response," a senior tourism department official told PTI. He said that the department has given its view saying that in the present scheme of things they will not be able to take it up. "But if the railway department through

charges by the railways on this particular package, thereby making this not a very viable option," he said. Karnataka tourism is putting in a lot of money to run this and it has become unviable for them, he added. The 14-coach luxury train project was conceived in 2005 for

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: With election fever gripping Kerala, tour operators are trying to lure holidayers by promising them a feel of the battle of ballot in the politically hyperactive state. Some have launched special packages for foreign tourists to enable them get a closer view of the vibrant election scene, along with its panoramic locations already reputed for their charm the world over. They believe that the total ambience of the election season with villages and towns afloat with col-

ists in our elections has actually made us think about working out an innovative package," he told PTI. He has listed "poll tourism" in the website of his firm along with other services like 'monsoon mantra', 'vanitha house boat' and 'ayurvedic house boat'. "Our customers will get a chance to have a close look at electioneering in Alappuzha, the hub of Kerala's water tourism, through houseboat cruise," he said. Around 65 tourists from various countries like US, France,

orful posters and banners, squads of grassroot workers moving in door-to-door canvassing, marches and street corner meetings, will certainly be a novel experience for foreign visitors. Mass participation in elections, approachability of candidates and political sensitivity of commoners could be of interest to foreign holidayers, tour operators said. Tomi Pulikkattil, an Alappuzhabased tour operator, said foreigners are keen to know about the election procedure in India and like to watch live campaigns and rallies. "The concept of poll tourism is actually our brainchild. The curiosity shown by tour-

Germany and England had availed of the package when it was first introduced in 2004 general elections. A group of 15 German tourists were taken around Alappuza and Varkala during the 2009 elections, he said. Tomi said his group had already communicated to their counterparts abroad about this year's 'poll tourism package'. The itinerary would be worked out on getting their replies. Many local and national tour operators are also coming up with similar packages, which offer customers many interesting features, ranging from taking tourists to hot campaign spots to introducing them to key contestants. -PTI

To Broome, via Kakadu

Edith Falls Cont’d from page 42

Finally we arrived in Broome after another 220 kms of 'nothing', as we approached from the east we wondered what the attraction was but as soon as we saw the sea with its incredible deep azure blue color we were sold! We were very lucky to get a prime spot in the town caravan park with views of, and a very short walk to the beach. This was Roebuck Bay which faces East so you can see the sun (and moon) rise, then you can take a cheap bus ride to Cable Beach to

Crocodile safety warning

see stunning sunsets. The park was within walking distance to downtown with shops and bars handy. Altogether we spent nine nights and had a very laid back and enjoyable sojourn. During this time we also returned to Derby for two nights to get a seaplane to The Horizontal Falls caused by the tidal differences between lakes on the northern coast ...spectacular! The drive home was uneventful, but not unenjoyable (once we got past Halls Creek!) and we detoured via Emerald, Yeppoon be-

fore coming back down the East coast. We arrived home 76 days after we set out to find our property beset with the heady aromas of Macadamia, Yesterday Today and Tomorrow, Jasmine, and Rondeletia and welcomed by our house sitter who had kept it spotless ... altogether a very sweet homecoming! Colin Drake is a writer on spirituality whose books are based on his own realization. See also page 53 for his article on Desire.

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