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Gowda for City Council gathers momentum Details on page 10
Community fears racial profiling Details on page 44
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VOL 15, No. 779
August 7, 2009
WAR NO OPTION: PM DEFENDS PAK TALKS
NEW DELHI: Facing sharp attack from Opposition and reservations within Congress over Indo-Pak joint statement, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has ruled out resumption of dialogue with Pakistan till terrorism against India is ended but maintained that engagement with it was unavoidable.
While making it clear that terrorism has not been delinked from the resumption of a composite dialogue with Pakistan, he said, "Unless we want to go to war with Pakistan, dialogue is the only way out. But we should do so on the basis of trust, but verify." Details on page 6
Mauli Dave is Grand Marshal for FIA parade Details on page 7
Indian donates stem cells for second time Details on page 21
Rajmata Gayatri Devi is dead
Jindal more popular than Obama
Details on page 9
Details on page 7
Holbrooke to visit New Delhi in mid-August
India spent $ 10 million on lobbying in US
Details on page 9 Details on page 7
Three LeT activists guilty for Mumbai blasts Former film star Leela Naidu dies in Mumbai Details on page 9
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TRUE HONOR: Indian Ambassador to US Meera Shankar speaking at a reception given by US Senate India Caucus on Capitol Hill July 28. Among those present were Co-Chair Senator Christopher Dodd (D) (right) of Connecticut, Co-Chair Senator John Cornyn (R) (middle) and Sant Chatwal, Chairman of the Indian-Americans for Democrats (left). -Pic Mohammed Jaffer-SnapsIndia
Rare reception to honor Indian Ambassador SRIREKHA N. CHAKRAVARTY India Post News Service
This week’s question
Should war against Pakistan be ruled out? Last week’s result
Is the end-user agreement compromising India’s sovereignty? YES 22%
NEW YORK: In a rare gesture of underlining the strength of Indo-US ties, the Senate India Caucus hosted a reception in honor of the Indian Ambassador to the US Meera Shankar, in Washington DC on July 28. Attended by almost a quarter of the US Senate members, the reception also brought together a host of Indian American community leaders from across the country.
“I am truly honored to be here today in this sanctum sanctorum of democracy,” said Shankar addressing the august gathering. “This is a tribute to India, to the Indian community in the United States, to the warm and strong ties between our two countries, and, above all, to the values that bind our two nations together. The Senate India Caucus, Amb. Shankar said, was not merely a forum to advance the partnership between the US and India, but an important symbol of the IndiaUS relationship. Contíd on page 8
Certified by “CIRCULATION VERIFICATION COUNCIL Readership 117,765”
Details on page 9
CONTENTS Bollywood ---------------------- 24-25 Classifieds --------------------- 48-51 Community Post -------------- 10-19 Date Book -------------------------- 40 Edit Page --------------------------- 53 HealthScience Post --------- 21-23 Horoscope ------------------------- 43 Immigration Post ------------- 44-47 Life Style ----------------------- 26-30 Philosophy ------------------------- 52 Publisherís Diary ------------------ 4 Real Estate ------------------------ 41 TechBiz Post ------------------- 37-39 Travel & Hospitality Post ---- 31-34
August 7, 2009
August 7, 2009
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August 7, 2009
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he problem with America has always been its big businesses. Financial institutions, banks, credit card, insurance, pharmaceutical and oil companies, the weapons industry and of course the retail giants - have such a stranglehold over the nation in ensuring that their greed-led substantive bottom lines are taken care of - by hook and crook -- that the quality of lives of the common folks seem almost insignificant. While I am no communist, sometimes I wonder if extreme capitalism with an absolutely uncontrolled free enterprise has really worked for the US. Clearly, it's a system that serves only the interests of the fittest and the mighty who through sheer money power have kept governments under their control rather than it being the other way around. Banks and financial institutions have through fraud and mismanagement brought the nation to financial ruin, but hey, they are the ones that get bailed out by the government. It's the big oil companies that control energy and environment policy; and while people at large are suffering for lack of healthcare, pharmaceutical and insurance companies continue to make a mockery of healthcare by making it so out of reach of the common people. Here, for once, is a President who has dared to take the initiative to launch a government health insurance plan, but the private insurers are frothing at the mouths fearing their own businesses would be affected. Lawmakers with vested interests are of course toeing the lines of the big companies by opposing the proposed health insurance option that the Obama Administration is trying to enforce. What does it take for these companies to understand that their system, the way it is now, has failed and will not sustain any longer? What will it take for the common people of America to come out and demand that the system be changed? Why are they so paranoid of a little government regulation? Why don't they see through the manipulations of the big insurance companies? I really don't know.
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Bollywood Salman exposed The brawny Salman Khan had a tough time on Farah Khan's show when his mum and dad exposed his personal life!
Cover Story: War no option Unless we want to go to war with Pakistan, dialogue is the only way out, says Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Community: Boost for Gowda
Candidate for New York City Council from the 49th district of Staten Island, Rajiv Gowda's campaign has received a boost.
Health: Double donation Vivek Kumar, a 32-year-old Californian of Indian descent, has donated his stem cells for a second transplant.
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Travel: Kodaikanal Nestling amidst the folds of the verdant Pali Hills is the idyllic retreat of Kodaikanal, popularly known as Kodai.
August 7, 2009
United Federation of Indo American of California (UFICA) Is Pleased to Announce
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August 7, 2009
War no option: PM defends Pak talks NEW DELHI: Facing sharp attack from Opposition and reservations within Congress over IndoPak joint statement, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has ruled out resumption of dialogue with Pakistan till terrorism against India is ended but maintained that engagement with it was unavoidable. While making it clear that terrorism has not been delinked from the resumption of a composite dialogue with Pakistan, he said, "Unless we want to go to war with Pakistan, dialogue is the only way out. But we should do so on the basis of trust, but verify." An assertive Prime Minister told the Lok Sabha that all apprehensions over the statement issued in Sharm-el Sheikh were unfounded as India has not diluted its stand on terrorism and held his ground on inclusion of Balochistan in it, saying India had nothing to hide. Taking the floor after an allround Opposition attack that the Prime Minister had reversed India's long-held policy on dealing with Pakistan, he said "I refuse to be-
lieve that we have broken the national consensus." He made it clear that it is impossible for any government in India to work towards full normalization of relations with Pakistan unless it fulfills in letter and spirit its com-
mitment not to allow its territory to be used against India for terror. In a spirited 45-minute intervention in a debate on the controversial Indo-Pak statement, he at-
tacked BJP, saying the UPA government has achieved "far more than the NDA government was ever able to extract from Pakistan during its entire tenure despite its tall talk". At the same time, he praised his "distinguished predecessor" Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who was not deterred, as a "statesman should not be", in the face of Kargil, Kandahar hijack and Parliament attack to continue on the path of dialogue. "I, for one, share Vajpayee's vision and I have also felt his frustration in dealing with Pakistan," Singh said. He invoked Vajpayee's name to defend his strategy after BJP leader and former External Affairs Minister Yashwant Sinha made a scathing attack on him, accusing him of reversal of position on terrorism and giving too many concessions to Pakistan. "All the waters of Neptune cannot wash away the shame of Sharm-el Sheikh," said Sinha amid chants of 'shame' from the opposition members. Several other Oppo-
Gilani lauds Manmohan's 'bold vision' for peace ISLAMABAD: Lauding Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's "statesmanship" and his "bold vision of peace and prosperity," Pakistan Premier Yousuf Raza Gilani has said dialogue was the only way forward for peace in South Asia. Responding to Singh's statement in the Lok Sabha on the Indo-Pak joint statement of Egypt, Gilani reciprocated the "sentiments for peace" expressed by him and said terrorism was a common threat to the two countries. The Pakistani premier said the two leaders "had useful talks and a good meeting of minds" during their talks on the sidelines of the Non-
Aligned Movement summit at Sharm el-Sheikh on July 16. "We had agreed that terrorism was a common threat. We also agreed that dialogue is the only
Yousuf Raza Gilani
way forward," Gilani said in a statement issued by the Prime Minister's House.
He said Singh "has rightly emphasized the importance of an honorable settlement of the outstanding issues between India and Pakistan". He also commended Singh for his "bold vision of peace and prosperity in South Asia and the statesmanship that he has demonstrated". Asked to comment on Singh's remarks, Foreign Office spokesman Abdul Basit said Pakistan is a victim of terrorism and its neighbor should cooperate with it in tackling the menace rather than indulging in blame games. He said Pakistan has an open and clear policy on terrorism. He said Pakistan will adopt a constructive approach for the forthcoming meetings with the Foreign Secretary and Foreign Minister of India and hopefully the process of composite dialogue will commence again.
No evidence on Balochistan, says Holbrooke WASHINGTON: US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke has said that Pakistani leaders brought up the issue of India's alleged involvement in Balochistan, but did not give any credible evidence to support their claim. "I would be misleading, if I said
it didn't come up," Holbrooke told State Department Press Corps when asked to comment on the meetings he had with Pakistani leaders during his last week's visit to that country. Asked if Pakistan has provided him with any "credible evidence of India's involvement in Balochistan", he said: "The nar-
row answer to your question is no." However, he did not elaborate any further. He also reiterated that Kashmir is outside his ability to discuss. Responding to questions, Holbrooke said there is no difference with India on the issue of Pakistan and Afghanistan.-PTI
sition stalwarts, including JD(U)'s Sharad Yadav, also attacked the government. Singh, whose speech was repeatedly cheered by the ruling benches, dismissed as "not correct" an impression that talks with
An assertive Prime Minister told the Lok Sabha that all apprehensions over the statement issued in Sharm-el Sheikh were unfounded as India has not diluted its stand on terrorism and held his ground on inclusion of Balochistan in it Pakistan would continue irrespective of whether Islamabad takes action against terror or not. Making it clear that India wanted good relations with Pakistan, he said it is "in our vital in-
terest to make sincere efforts to live in peace with Pakistan." "Unless we talk directly to Pakistan, we will have to rely on third parties to do so. That route has severe limitations as to its effectiveness," the Prime Minister said. He, however, added that "despite the best of intentions, we cannot move forward if terrorist attacks launched from Pakistani soil continue to kill and injure our citizens, here and abroad. That is the national position." On mention of Balochistan in the Joint Statement, an issue over which even his own party members have reservations, Singh strongly defended his position, saying he agreed to its inclusion as India has nothing to hide and was not afraid of addressing Pakistan's "misgivings". He emphasized that he had not received any dossier on Balochistan from his Pakistani counterpart Yousuf Raza Gilani during their meeting in Sharm-el Sheikh on July 16.-PTI
Congress finally backs PM on talks with Pak NEW DELHI: The Congress made it clear that there was no party has finally backed Prime question of resumption of diaMinister Manmohan Singh on the logue with Pakistan till it acts controversial Indo-Pak joint state- against those mounting terror atment with Rahul Gandhi stating tacks against India. that the party and the government "No one should be in any "are one on the issue". doubt on our party's position vis"Government and party are a-vis Pakistan. It remains unabsolutely one. You media have changed. We support the resumpcreated such an impression," he tion of the dialogue process with told reporters here when asked Pakistan but only after it has demwhether there were differences onstrated its seriousness to bring between the party and the gov- the perpetrators of the Mumbai ernment on the Indo-Pak joint terror attacks to justice and to prestatement. Rahul's categorical statement came hours Sonia made it clear that there after Sonia Gandhi had was no question of resumption addressed the Congress Parliamentary of dialogue with Pakistan till it Party (CPP) in which she acts against those mounting stopped short of deterror attacks against India fending the controversial joint statement. His remarks assume signifi- vent its territory from being used cance against the backdrop of to launch terror attacks on any widespread speculation that the part of our territory," she said. Congress party has been unSonia said these were imperahappy with the joint statement tives for restoring confidence and signed by Prime Minister building an environment conduManmohan Singh and his Paki- cive to any meaningful dialogue. stani counterpart Yusuf Raza She confined herself to merely Gilani on July 16 which delinked mentioning that Singh had made terrorism from the dialogue pro- a "firm and unequivocal" statecess and made a mention of ment in the Lok Sabha on all maBalochistan. jor foreign policy issues, in parIn a carefully-worded state- ticular India's relations with Pakiment at the CPP meeting, Sonia stan.
August 7, 2009
Mauli Dave is Grand Marshal for FIA parade India Post News Service
FREMONT: Bollywood singer Mauli Dave will be the Grand Marshal at 17th Festival of India Parade and celebration in Fremont on 14, 15 and 16 August this year. 22-year old Mauli was a finalist on Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Challenge 2007 and was crowned Miss Teen India Texas 2007. Dave is also a professional dancer who was a finalist in Sony Entertainment Television's "Boogie Woogie Chalo America" in 2003. She has also appeared in one episode of the Zee TV serial, Parrivaar, performing as a belly dancer. Her towering personality of over six feet height gives her the
additional advantage of the screen presence. No wonder famed music director Bappi Lahiri called her "Indian Shakira". Mauli Dave was born in Ahemdabad then she moved to Houston, Texas. She attended Best Primary School, Ahmedabad during her stay in India. Before participating in Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Challenge 2007, she studied 2nd year of university at the University of Houston with "Graphic Communications\" as a major. She attended Clear Brook High School in Friendswood, Texas. During her free time, she plays tennis. She had her vocal training in Hindustani Sangeet in Houston under Smt. Chandrakantha
India has not changed stand on climate: PM NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said India's accepting that global temperature should not exceed two degrees celsius was a possible threshold guiding global action and is "entirely in line" with country's stated position on global warming. "India has not changed its stand on climate change and the declaration at the Major Economic Forum (MEF) adopted at L'Aquila, Italy, is not a declaration of its climate change policy," he said in the Lok Sabha while replying to a debate. Singh, who is under attack for stating that global temperature increase should not exceed 2C, argued "it was not a bilateral declaration between India and another country or a group of countries. Instead, he pointed, "It is a
declaration that represents a shared view among 17 developed and developing countries, the latter category including China, South Africa, Brazil, Indonesia and Mexico." Therefore, the formulations are necessarily generally worded to reflect different approaches and positions of a fairly diverse group of countries, he contended. Singh termed the criticism "a one-sided and misleading interpretation" and asserted that India will was in no way obliged to accept emission reduction targets. The Prime Minister said "it is India's view, which has been consistently voiced at all forums, that global warming is taking place and that its adverse consequences will impact most heavily on developing countries like India.-PTI
Opposition dissatisfied with PM's clarification NEW DELHI: Opposition was dissatisfied with Prime Minister's clarification in Parliament on the issue of Indo-Pak Joint Statement, with BJP accusing him of taking the country on a "perilous path" while the CPI(M) said the terms of engagement with Islamabad were not clear. BJP was the most caustic in its criticism with former External Affairs Minister Yashwant Sinha saying, "Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is taking India on a perilous path with Pakistan...It will take advantage of this." He said the BJP apprehended that the PM is treading on a path for which "the country will have
to a pay a heavy price". He expressed dissatisfaction with the PM's reply. The Left parties were critical of the government stand as they felt the terms of engagement had not been clearly spelt out. "We support that dialogue is the way forward. But on what terms these engagements with Pak will take place is important... contradictory position is emerging after the joint statement," CPI (M) leader Sitaram Yechury said. CPI MP D Raja shared these sentiments saying, "There is no way forward other than dialogue. However, there are grey areas in the End-Use Agreement.-PTI
Courtney. She hosted "Rock n Roll Family" on ZEE TV with television actor Sharad Kelkar, which was very helpful in improving her Hindi speaking skills. She was also given a break by music composer
Aadesh Shrivastav by letting her sing the title song of the movie "Love Ka Tadka". Mauli, with her brother Omkar had her first Bhajan album (CD) titled "Prabhu Tare Pagathiye"
released in September 2006. The bhajans are in Gujarati and have been composed by Omkar. The music arrangement is also by Omkar. Mauli, Omkar and Hemant have provided vocal.
Jindal more popular than Obama in Louisiana: Poll WASHINGTON: Indian-American Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is more popular than US President Barack Obama in his state and majority of the people there like the charismatic Republican to continue in the post rather than running for the White House in 2012, according to a new poll. Fifty-five per cent of the state's voters approve of the job Jindal is doing, 11 points higher than the grade they give for Obama. A state-wide survey by Public Policy Polling revealed Jindal con-
tinued to be popular in Louisiana even as his numbers are far below the approval ratings he enjoyed after his first year in office. As many as 55 per cent of Louisiana voters approve of Jindal's job performance, ranking him third for popularity among 17 Governors the Public Policy Polling has looked at across the country so far this year. On the other hand, Obama gets overall negative ratings in Louisiana. Obama had lost Louisiana by 20 points last November. Accord-
ing to the poll, 44 per cent of voters approve of his work so far, while 50 per cent disapprove. When it comes to potential 2012 Presidential candidacy, voters gave mixed messages about Jindal, the poll results showed, according to which 61 percent say he should not run, while only 27 percent say he should. Jindal is the rising star of the Republican party and is widely believed to run for the 2012 Presidential elections, though he has dismissed such reports.-PTI
India spent $ 10 million on lobbying in US WASHINGTON: With the US lawmakers holding key to a vast number of issues affecting India and its corporates, the Indian government and a handful of private entities have together spent over 10 million dollars this year alone on lobbying activities in the power corridors here. In efforts to push forward their case in the US Congress and the administration on issues such as nuclear deal in case of the government and those related to foreign trade, immigration and other regulatory matters as also individual business ventures in case of private Indian entities, nearly 5.6 million dollars were paid to the lobbyists in the second quarter of 2009, according to the set of lobbying disclosure reports filed with
The Indian government and the country's largest private sector firm Reliance Industries together accounted for nearly three-fourth of the total lobbying spending by India and Indian companies the US Senate for this period. Prior to this, India had already paid nearly 4.6 million dollars in the first quarter ended March 31, 2009, taking the total for the year to over 10 million dollars (Rs 50 crore). Interestingly, the Indian government and the country's largest
private sector firm Reliance Industries, which is run by billionaire industrialist Mukesh Ambani, together accounted for nearly threefourth of the total lobbying spending by India and Indian companies among the US lawmakers. Other entities having indulged in lobbying activities, as per the available disclosure reports for the latest quarter, include Tata Sons Ltd, software industry body Nasscom, Gujarat Flurochemicals, Sun Pharma and Orchid Chemical. According to the disclosure reports filed by high-profile lobbyist firm BGR, which has both RIL and the Indian government as its clients, it was paid a total of 1,90,000 dollars in April-June 2009 towards lobbying activities done for the Indian petrochemicals major.-PTI
August 7, 2009
Rare reception to honor Indian Ambassador Cont’d from page 1
The Senate India Caucus, the only country specific caucus in the US Senate was formed in 2004 with then Senator Hillary Clinton as co-chair along with Senator John Cornyn (R-TRX) on the Republican side. Senator Christopher Dodd (D-CT) has now taken over as Co-Chair in place of Secretary Clinton. Amb. Shankar thanked the caucus co-chairs Senator Chris Dodd and John Cornyn as also all other Senators and Indian American community leaders for their steadfast support to India in the landmark India-US civil nuclear initiative. Lauding Indian American leaders for their extraordinary success and achievements, Amb Shankar said, “Above all, I have been impressed with your role as responsible stakeholders in American society and its progress. You have been a great bridge of friend-
Co-Chair Senator Christopher Dodd (D) speaking at the reception. Pics Mohammed Jaffer-SnapsIndia
annual flows, exceed US foreign direct investment into India in recent years. In 2007-08 alone, an estimated US$ 10.25 billion was invested by Indian companies in the US, which, according to industry estimates, created around 65,000 jobs in the US. A recent
Indian Ambassador to US Meera Shankar signing autograph at the reception
ship and understanding between our two countries.” To the Senators present, Amb. Shankar said, “There are 2.7 million Indians in the United States; 94,000 students from India are in US universities, the highest from any country; our bilateral trade has doubled in the past five years; US exports to India have grown three times during the period; just a few years ago, Air India gave Boeing a contract of 68 aircraft; till recently India barely sourced any defense equipment from the United States, last year alone we placed orders for at least $3.5 billion.” As the largest source of foreign direct and portfolio investments in India, the US is an indispensable partner in India’s development, she said. “Today, India, in its own modest way, is making a contribution to US jobs and prosperity. Indian direct investments into the US, on the basis of
study by Ernst & Young shows that there were 143 Indian investments in 2007 and 2008 across various sectors in the US, nearly half of the Indian acquisitions and new ventures were in the US IT and IT-enabled sectors.” Similarly, she said, India’s huge market was an extraordinary opportunity, including in the infrastructure industry, where it needs to invest at least $500 billion in the next five years. Amb. Shankar further outlined the many strategic interests that the two countries have forged during Secretary Clinton’s recent visit to India, including cooperation in space, defense equipment, science and technology and for completing the steps for implementation of the civil nuclear agreement. In November 2009, she said, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh will come to Washington DC on the first state visit to be hosted by President Obama.
Outlining India’s broad-based agenda for the future, Amb. Shankar said, “We will seek to increase security for our people by intensifying cooperation in defense, counter-terrorism, intelligence sharing and non-proliferation. No two countries have greater stakes in and a better record on non-proliferation than India and the United States. We will work together to prevent nuclear terrorism and address the challenges of global nuclear proliferation.” India will work with partner countries for global economic recovery, she assured, adding that it would also work to develop clean and renewable sources of energy, improve energy efficiency and strengthen its ability to adapt to climate change. “Protection of nature is rooted deeply in India’s civilizational and spiritual heritage; it is also an imperative for our economic, energy and environmental security,” she said. Stating that the two countries would work to use their capacity for enterprise, innovation and research to foster new solutions for food security, healthcare and education, Shankar said, “India considers partnership with the US important for its national development goals. Similarly, the eco-
Indian Ambassador to US Meera Shankar with Congressional India Caucus Co Chair Congressman Edward R. Royce
ket and an anchor for stability in the global economy.” In each of those areas, she said India counted on the commitment of the US Senators and the efforts of the Indian American leaders, to work together not only to seek a better life for Indians, but also a stronger and safer future for the world. Senator Dodd expressed satisfaction at the high attendance by the Indian American leaders at the reception. Talking about bilateral
Calling the reception “energizing” Chairman of USINPAC, Sanjay Puri praised the Co-chairs of the Caucus saying “We are fortunate to have leaders with a strong understanding of the strategic nature and value of the US-India relationship relations, he said that “I am excited to play a role in continuing to develop this important relationship. India is a true friend to America, and an emerging global power whose cooperation will be essential to tackling the challenges we will face together in the 21st century.” Senator Kit Bond said, “A strong relationship between India and the U.S. is vital to ensuring peaceful development and continued prosperity in South and Southeast Asia. Over the years I
Participants at the reception
nomic growth of one-sixth of humanity, which is largely driven by domestic demand and savings, provides potentially a large mar-
edge Initiative, and the peaceful nuclear agreement. I am delighted to be part of the welcome reception of the Indian Ambassador and I look forward to continuing to work in the Senate to strengthen the partnership between the world’s largest and oldest democracies.” Calling the reception “energizing” Chairman of USINPAC, Sanjay Puri praised the Co-chairs of the Caucus saying “We are for-
have had the pleasure of visiting this great nation to promote the sale of the Missouri-made Super Hornet, the Agricultural Knowl-
tunate to have leaders with a strong understanding of the strategic nature and value of the USIndia relationship. We are sure that tonight’s event will reinvigorate the Caucus and strengthen its engagement with India on issues that bind the fate of the two countries like terrorism, security, energy, trade and the environment.” Vikram Chauhan, Senior Advisor of USINPAC added, “This is a good beginning for the new Ambassador. She will receive strong backing for the US-India partnership, and for its continued growth in the future. USINPAC is indeed there to extend full support.” Among the prominent Senators who present at the reception were Harry Reid, Senate Majority Leader; John Kerry, Chairman of Senate Foreign Relations Committee; Bob Menendez, Chairman Democratic campaign committee; Barbara Boxer, Joe Lieberman, Daniel Inouye, Daniel Akaka, Roland Burris, Evan Bayh, Carl Levin, Al Franken, Kit Bond, Kirsten Gillbrand, Kay Hagan, John Voinovich, Jeff Merkley, Bob Casey and Kay Bailey Hutchinson.
August 7, 2009
Charismatic Rajmata Gayatri Devi dies in Mumbai JAIPUR: Charismatic Jaipur royal Rajmata Gayatri Devi, a three-time MP and who was once named as 'World's Ten Most Beautiful Women' by 'Vogue' magazine, died here following a prolonged illness. She was 90. Gayatri, who became an extremely successful politician, breathed her last at Satokben Durlabh Memorial Hospital where she was readmitted for chest infection after she was discharged a few days ago. "She recovered from her gastrointestinal problems but she was detected with a lung infection. Her condition deteriorated and she breathed her last," said Dr Subhash Kala, who was attending on her. It was a tragic irony that Gayatri Devi passed away just a day after actress and beauty Leela Naidu died in Mumbai also after prolonged illness. The prestigious fashion magazine Vogue had named Gayatri Devi as one of the 10 most beautiful women in the world along with Leela. Married to late Sawai Man Singh II, Gayatri's son Prince Jagat Singh died in 1997 and she is survived by her two grand children Rajkumari Lalitya Kumari and Dev Raj Singh. Celebrated for her classical beauty and something of a fashion icon in her adulthood, Gayatri Devi won the Lok Sabha seat thrice in 1962, 1967 and 1971.
She stood as the candidate of Swatantra party founded by India's last Governor General C Rajagopalachari against the Congress nominee, an action which infuriated the then prime minister Indira Gandhi who retaliated in 1971 by abolishing the privy
Rajmata Gayatri Devi
purses, and stopping all royal privileges, breaking the treaties agreed upon in 1947. Gayatri Devi was accused of breaking tax laws, and served 5 months in Tihar Jail in Delhi during the Emergency. She retired from politics after that experience. Amitabh Bachchan's tribute According to one report, Amitabh Bachchan recalls sneak-
ing into the Jaipur Polo Ground when he was a student in Delhi University to not just watch polo matches but also catch a glimpse of Gayatri Devi. "The maharaja of Jaipur (Sawai Man Singh), a great proponent of the game, would play there and accompanying him used to be his wife, the Rajmata Gayatri Devi. "In her soft and pastel flowered chiffons, she used to be a picture of grace and beauty. I never imagined that one day I would get to meet this lady. But time and circumstances changed that," the actor posted on his blog. "After joining the movies, there were many visits to Jaipur for shootings and that is when a formal introduction with the Rajmata took place. I was later asked by Gayatri Deviji to inaugurate one of the functions at the girls' school (Maharani Gayatri Devi) that she started, now a flourishing institution. "Some years ago she had invited me to be the chief guest at a charity she promoted for the underprivileged and cannot forget what a gracious host she was that evening. On another occasion she called me over for a private lunch at her Lily Pond residence, serving me personally with delicious vegetarian delicacies which she had so considerately asked her kitchen to prepare," he said.
Former film star Leela Naidu dies in Mumbai MUMBAI: Indian film actress Leela Naidu has died in Mumbai at the age of 69 following a long illness. Naidu, who was crowned Miss India in 1955 and renowned for her beauty, starred in films including the award-winning Anuradha. She went on to star in Merchant Ivory's The Householder in 1963, portraying a rebellious young bride. Indian president Pratibha Patil said her work had "delighted Hindi film-goers across the country". Film-maker Shyam Benegal, who directed Naidu in 1985 movie Trikaal, said her death was "a loss to the film industry". He added that the actress, who once featured in a Vogue magazine list of the most beautiful women in the world, was "unpretentious and warm". Born to an Irish mother and an Indian father, Leela Naidu was crowned Miss India in 1954. "Vogue" once called her one of the five most beautiful women in the world.
Naidu made her debut in Balraj Sahni's Anuradha in 1960. The film didn't do well at the box office, but got the National Award for best film and she got critical acclaim. However, she became fa-
Born to an Irish mother and an Indian father, Leela Naidu was crowned Miss India in 1954. â€˜Vogueâ€™ once called her one of the five most beautiful women in the world mous after her non-orthodox role with Sunil Dutt in Yeh Raaste Hain Pyar Ke (1963), based on the famous K M Nanavati vs. State of Maharashtra court case. In the same year, she was offered a role in the first Merchant Ivory Production "The Householder", which was directed by James Ivory.
Three LeT activists held guilty for 2003 Mumbai blasts MUMBAI: Three Lashkar-e- tions of IPC, POTA, Explosives SubTaiba (LeT) activists, including a stances Act and Prevention of Dammarried couple, were today con- age to Public Property Act. victed under POTA by a special Stating that the accused face court here for carrying out twin life or death sentence as they were blasts in the city in August 2003, found guilty under sections of IPC, in which 52 people were killed. special public prosecutor Ujjwal The accused were held guilty Nikam asserted that the prosecuof planting powerful bombs in two tion would seek stringent punishtaxis which exploded at the Gate- ment for the trio. way of India and Zaveri Bazaar on August 25, 2003, Special Prevention of that also injured 244. The Terrorism Act (POTA) judge M trio had, around a month before the blasts, on July R Puranik deferred to August 28, planted a bomb in a 4 the next hearing to decide municipal bus in suburban on the quantum of sentence Ghatkopar which killed to be awarded to the two persons. Special Prevention of three convicts Terrorism Act (POTA) judge M R Puranik deferred to AuThis is for the first time a couple gust 4 the next hearing to decide on was found guilty of terrorist acts the quantum of sentence to be under POTA, Nikam said outside awarded to the three convicts. the court. Ashrat Ansari (32), Hanif Sayed The convicts listened carefully Anees (46) and his wife Fehmida to the judge while the verdict was Sayed (43) were convicted for their being pronounced in the six-yearrole in the blasts under various Sec- long trial and remained silent.-PTI
Holbrooke to visit New Delhi in mid-August WASHINGTON: Denying any "rift" or "complications" behind postponement of his visit to India, US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke has said he will be in New Delhi in mid-August. "There were no complications. I have three or four people in India who are my main policy interlocutors. All but one of them were going to be out of the country," he said, explaining that this was the reason why he could not travel to India during his recent trip to Pakistan, Afghanistan and Brussels. "There's no issue here," Holbrooke said, emphasizing that
he would be visiting India next month. "I am going to go back in mid-August. Within the limits of Indian Independence Day. They all are looking forward to my coming." Asked if there was a rift between the US and India on the issue of Pakistan and Afghanistan, Holbrooke said there are no differences between them. "You know, India was the first country in the world I was ever aware of. I have a very special feeling for it. And if there's a rift, you have to ask the Indians. I didn't see any rift," the US envoy said.-PTI
Anurag Kashyap in jury for Venice Film Festival VENICE: Indian writer-director Anurag Kashyap of "Dev D" fame will be a part of the international jury at this year's Venice Film Festival. Kashyap will be in the jury headed by Academy winning auteur Ang Lee that will judge the films screened in the ten day long extravaganza that begins on September 2. The filmmaker is the only Venice first timer on the jury as all the other jury members are regulars at the festival, which is the oldest in the world.
"It is an honor to be a part of such a prestigious jury. I have been with the jury of many film festivals but it is for the first time that I am going to be part of an international festival. It is a major experience for me," Kashyap told PTI. "It a proud moment to represent Indian cinema in one of the world's oldest film festivals. I am also looking forward to watch a variety of films," Kashyap said, jokingly adding that he planned to beat Oscarwinner Ang Lee.-PTI
Desi News 'Chak De Bhangra' at White Sox baseball stadium MOHAMMAD GHOUSE
CHICAGO: More than twenty thousand fans watching the baseball game at U.S. Cellular Field on July 21 were thrilled when they watched Bhangra dance, a popular folk dance of Punjab, India, presented by Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago. The game was being played between Chicago White Sox and Tampa Bay Rays The occasion was to celebrate Asian Heritage Night.
COMMUNITY ACROSS AMERICA
10 India Post
Details on page 16
August 7, 2009
Gowda's campaign for City Council gathers momentum India Post News Service
Details on page 11
Conserving water the pro-active way
Guru Nanak Foundation discusses Kartarpur Sahib strategy
NEW YORK: Candidate for New York City Council from the 49th district of Staten Island, Rajiv Gowda's campaign received a boost with him collecting more than 3000 signatures in his sup-
sign my petitions. We couldn't keep people away. After the mess in the
NEW YORK last few weeks in Albany the people of Staten Island have come to realize we need to change the way we're
India Post News Service
MOORESVILLE, N.C.: The average household spends as much as $500 per year on water and sewer bills and uses about 100 gallons of water each day, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. In addition to taking shorter showers and only washing full loads of laundry, you can increase your water savings and decrease expenses by tackling a few simple projects around the home with help from Lowe's, the 2009 Energy Star® Retail Partner of the Year. Details on page 14
LA Gayatri Consciousness Center opens
‘Politicians need to stop looking after themselves and their own careers and start thinking about the people and their needs’ port. On July 17th, Gowda made Staten Island history filing 3200 signatures on his way to becoming the North Shore's next representative on the City Council. According to Gowda there is a sea change in Staten Island that one can clearly see in the signature gathering process. "People were excited to
Gowda with his supporters
elected to City Council from Staten Island. "People know what's going on in the community and know we can do better. They see the lack of mass transit and lack of adequate health care facility. They know we need to help family businesses and create jobs. Build more
schools to alleviate overcrowding. We hear the exact same promises from the exact same people year after year. Give an engineer, someone who actually knows how to build and make things, a chance for a change," said Gowda who is an engineer by profession.
Dorothy Brown launches online traffic ticket system India Post News Service
CHICAGO: Clerk of Cook County Circuit Court Dorothy Brown and Cook County Law Enforcement Agencies launched the first of its type in Illinois jurisdiction the "Online Traffic Ticket System," a program through
India Post News Service
LOS ANGELES: The new All World Gayatri Pariwar-LA Gayatri Consciousness Center was inaugurated on July 22 by Dr. Pranavbhai Pandya, Head of All World Gayatri Pariwar, Shantikunj, Hardwar, India. The Gayatri Consciousness Center located in 2446 W. Orange Ave., Anaheim, was purchased just a week before inauguration. It was church property, a beautiful temple place, nice dinning room and lots of parking. Details on page 18
doing business in all levels of government. Politicians need to stop looking after themselves and their own careers and start thinking about the people and their needs. I'm looking to be that change on the New York City Council," said Gowda. If elected, Gowda would be the first Asian American ever to be
which individuals may plead and pay for traffic tickets online or schedule a court date or sign up for Traffic Safety School. The launch and the practical demonstration of the program was done on July 23 at the traffic division center lower level at Daley center in Chicago downtown
"This new service is a special convenience for the citizens of Cook County," said Clerk Brown. "It enables individuals to rapidly and conveniently respond to their traffic violations and, if they so choose, pay associated fines and
one's traffic citations. It's a time saver for busy people, and the ability to use a credit card may help them manage payment more effectively," Clerk Brown pointed out. The Online Traffic Ticket System project will allow people with
‘It enables individuals to rapidly and conveniently respond to their traffic violations and, if they so choose, pay associated fines and other charges, safely and securely on their home computers’ other charges, safely and securely on their home computers. "Online Traffic Ticket System offers solutions for the usual problems associated with handling
Cook County traffic violations to conduct the following activities at the Clerk's Office website (www.cookcountyclerkofcourt.org): Cont’d on page 11
August 7, 2009
'Chak De Bhangra' at White Sox baseball stadium MOHAMMAD GHOUSE
CHICAGO: More than twenty thousand fans watching the baseball game at U.S. Cellular Field on July 21 were thrilled when they watched Bhangra dance, a popular folk dance of Punjab, India, presented by Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago. The game was being played between Chicago White Sox and Tampa Bay Rays The occasion was to celebrate Asian Heritage Night. The American National Anthem was sung by an Asian American singer Marlene Ho, and the ceremonial first ball was pitched by an Asian American beauty queen. The Sox management selected Bhangra dance to be performed at the game on the field at home plate. It was coordinated by Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago (PCS) and performed by Uni-
University of Chicago "Balle Bhangra" team, performing Punjabi folk dance Bhangra at the Chicago White Sox Baseball Stadium U.S. Cellular Field.
(UIC) Bhangra team. Many Punjabi community members came to the ball game to sup-
The Sox management selected Bhangra dance to be performed at the game on the field at home plate. It was coordinated by Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago (PCS) and performed by University of Chicago ‘Balle Bhangra’ team, preceded by live Punjabi dhol drumming performance versity of Chicago "Balle Bhangra" team, preceded by live Punjabi dhol drumming performance by the dholis (drummers) of University of Illinois at Chicago
port the event. With thousands clapping, the stadium P.A. sound system played Punjabi Bhangra music also during the high points in the game to rouse fans to cheer
Dorothy Brown launches online traffic ticket system Cont’d from page 10
• Enter a plea of guilty and pay the fine; or • Enter a plea of guilty, register for Traffic Safety School, pay the fine and registration fee; or • Enter a plea of not guilty, request and receive a court hearing date. Tickets applicable include: Failure to Wear Seat belt, Front/Side Windshield Unobst Speeding, Failure to Stop at Stop Sign, U-turn in the Intersection, Disobey, Turn Signal Indicator Yield to Pedestrian in Cross Walk, Improper Right Turn, Turns on Red Prohibited, No Turn Signs Clerk Brown pioneered the "Online Traffic Ticket System" project for the Circuit Court of Cook County upon receiving permission from the Illinois Supreme Court to take traffic ticket payments over the Internet. The project will enhance the Clerk's Office's operations by reducing traffic courthouse congestion and decreasing administrative and operational traffic citation processing and storage expenses.
The Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County is one of the first Cook County agencies to accept payments of fines and costs by credit card. Clerk Brown's innovative "Online Traf-
The project will enhance the Clerk's Office's operations by reducing traffic courthouse congestion and decreasing administrative and operational traffic citation processing and storage expenses fic Ticket System" system follows the groundbreaking Cash Bail by Credit Card program she implemented in the Clerk's Office in 2005. To date, the Cash Bail by Credit Card program had collected more than $32 million.
and root for their home team. Last time PCS presented Bhangra at White Sox game was on May 1, 2005 at the White Sox vs Detroit Tigers game. PCS has also presented Bhangra at Chicago Bull's basketball game in March 2009.
"We are proud to be invited by Chicago White Sox the second time, to entertain and share our rich Punjabi culture with the American mainstream, to create awareness about our community in the metropolitan Chicago and
beyond. It's a step in the right direction to create mutual understanding, and this is what PCS Chicago strives to do," said Rajinder Singh Mago of PCS, the event coordinator. Cont’d on page 15
Community Across America Grand 5-day celebrations mark renovation of Jain Center
August 7, 2009
India Post News Service
NEW JERSEY: The Jain Center of New
jersey (JCNJ), with blessings and spiritual guidance of Acharya Shri Somchandraji Maharaj (India), Gurudev Chitrabhanuji (USA), Adarniya Shri Rajendra Dalal
The entire event, under the leadership of Chairman Nitin Talsania and President Rashmi Shah and their teams turned out to be a one of a kind spiritual celebration (Hyderabad-India), and Vidhikar Shri Narendrabhai Nandu (Mumbai-India), celebrated one of the most memorable and historical 5 day Pratishtha Mahotsavs encom-
passing two weekends starting on July 17, 18, 19, and 25 & 26, 2009. A couple of thousand people participated in these events; many even did remotely via webcast, due to space constraints at the D e r a s e r. The cost of Jirnoddhar construction and celebration is a b o u t $600,000 but the spiritual excitement of attendees helped significantly in meeting and exceeding the financial gap with pledges of $1 million. The entire event, under the leadership of Chairman Nitin Talsania and President Rashmi Shah and their teams turned out to be a one of a kind spiritual celebration. According to Talsania, "While all the planning and organization was done in the best possible way, such unique and out-of-ordinary events can only occur due to divine blessings. How else can one explain on-time completion of
Ravi Pillai is VP of Universal Society of Hinduism
construction, obtaining of the final CO from the Building Department in just a day and the overall smooth sailing …in spite of potential obstacles that are beyond one's control?" "Our hard work and teamwork really paid off," said President of JCNJ Rashmi Shah.
New Jersey "Committees were empowered and so the best came out of every one of them," said Ashok Shah, one of the Lead Pratistha Mahotsav Co-ordinators. The Jain Center of New Jersey (JCNJ) is among the oldest and largest Jain Centers in North America. It was started in 1981 and incorporated as a non-profit institution in 1982. Under the guidance of Gurudev Chitrabhanuji, the JCNJ started with a small group of members and purchased a small church in Essex Fells, West Caldwell, New
Ravi Pillai India Post News Service
Jersey and internally converted into Jain Temple (Derasar). Cont’d on page 19
avikumar Subramaniapillai, a software consultant of North Carolina (USA), has been nominated Vice President of renowned Universal Society of Hinduism. Thirty-nine year old father of one, Ravi has volunteered for various Hindu organizations in India and USA. As a software engineer, his expertise is in business intelligence and data warehousing. Universal Society of Hinduism, a nondenominational religious-philosophical-cultural-educational organization, seeks to provide worldwide Hindu identity, enhance understanding of Hinduism, and to foster inter-religious dialogue. It aims at promoting the ethics, spirit, culture, and philosophy of Hindu heritage. Rajan Zed is its president.
Raytel launches 'all you can talk' to India HARISH RAO
CHICAGO: Raytel Communications LLC., a Chicago based telecommunications company launched unlimited calls from USA to India and from India to USA only for $24.99 per month. This service allows Raytel Customers to make calls from any phone in USA to any phone in India any time and similarly from any phone in India to any phone in USA using the same plan. Raytel's other popular plans are -
Illinois the two cents per minute pay-per-use plans i.e. Raytel customers can use the plan to make bidirectional calls paying the same cost per minute. Gladson Varghese Raytel's CEO, with Masters in Engineering and MBA - announced this plan at a press conference held on Devon Avenue on July 25. He said this monthly unlimited calling will greatly help people who make frequent calls to India either inquir-
Chaitali Patel - Raytel Executive Public Relations
ing about their parents, children studying in India or engaged in small business. Raytel with bestin-class products, advanced technology partners and with right market strategies is expanding rapidly among the Indians living in USA for its enviable quality. "Emphasis on quality and Customer service always is our top priority. Our innovative products will transform the way people communicate with each other" Varghese said. While expressing his grati-
Left to Right Kartik Shetty, Gunpal Shetty, Raj Dave, Vidyasagar Mulkanoor, Bhailal Patel and Ajit John.
Backed by proven businessmen and highly qualified technocrats, Raytel is a pioneer and is leading the way by offering a very unique plan - Call both ways using one plan
Rick and Andy Riviere - Raytel Technical Partners
tude to the rapidly growing customer base for their trust and support he further said that very soon Raytel will announce special calling plans to Mexico and Middle East and other countries. Backed by proven businessmen and highly qualified technocrats, Raytel is a pioneer and is leading the way by offering a very unique plan - Call both ways using one plan. Not only the American Indian public but also the critics and competitors are consider-
ing the two-way calling a path breaking feature. Dr Raj Dave, Global Technical Advisor and member of Raytel Advisory Board, highlighted the immediate expansion plans of Raytel's growth road map. He said that in the next few months Raytel plans to setup hubs across India to match the exponential growth and also has plan to setup hubs in countries where there is a large Indian Diaspora. Cont’d on page 19
August 7, 2009
India Post 13
Community Across America
August 7, 2009
Musical concert by St Conserving water the pro-active way Louis Telugu association India Post News Service
MOORESVILLE, N.C.: The average household spends as much as $500 per year on water and
Artists Mano and Anitha rendering songs
ST. LOUIS: The Telugu Association of St Louis (TAS) organized 'Mano' Musical concert on Saturday July 18 at Mahatma Gandhi Center, Saint Louis. The event was a great success and gave the audience an opportunity to listen to wonderful music by Mano. More than 500 music lovers attended the event to listen to their favorite singer. This was the first visit of Mano to
Missouri St Louis. Anitha Krishna from New Jersey shared the stage with Mano and they entertained the audience with several beautiful melodies. Suren Pathuri, President of TAS, welcomed the audience and introduced the singers to the audience. Mano mesmerized with songs like "Daayi Daayi Daamma" from Indra,
"Mukkaalaa Muqabla" from Premikudu, "Rabbaru gaajulu" and "Padyaalu" from Yama Donga and lot of other Telugu hit songs. He even delivered some of his dialogues from "Chandra Mukhi." Anitha Krishna sung some old melody songs like "nee leela padeda deva" , "Abba nee theeyanidebba" and many more with her sweet voice. The event was made successful, given the short time, with the efforts of TAS Executive Committee members - Tata Prasad, LN Rao Chilakala, Sharath Rao, Sriram Vedire and most of the Credit goes to Cultural Committee team - Sujatha Vinjamuri, Krishna Rao Moharir, Sandhya Yanamadala, Shailaja Akula and Midhuna Kalahasti. Mano and Anitha were felicitated at the end.
sewer bills and uses about 100 gallons of water each day, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. In addition to taking shorter showers and only washing full loads of laundry, you can increase your water savings and decrease expenses by tackling a few simple projects around the home with help from Lowe's, the 2009 Energy Star® Retail Partner of the Year.
Consider using an energy-efficient qualifying washer and use about 55% less water, saving up to 7,000 gallons. Lowe's stores have more Energy Star® Major Appliances in stock Conserve a drop inside Knock off a third of your annual water costs by incorporating easy fixes and adjustments indoors. • Consider using an energy-efficient qualifying washer and use about 55% less water, saving up to 7,000 gallons. Lowe's stores have more Energy Star® Major Appliances in stock than any other national big box retailer. In addition, Lowes is ranked "Highest in Customer Satisfaction among the
Largest Appliance Retailers" by J.D. Power and Associates. • Install a WaterSense®-labeled Price Pfister Brushed Nickel Bathroom Faucet which can reduce a sink's water flow by 30 percent without sacrificing performance. Installing t h e s e throughout the average home can save more than 500 gallons of water each year the equivalent of 8,000 cups of coffee or 12 loads of laundry. • Replace toilets installed before 2000 with the Jacuzzi Espree WaterSense® Toilet which uses 20 percent less water. In just two years, a WaterSense® -labeled toilet will pay for itself through utility savings and can save a family of four more than 16,000 gallons of water each year. • Avoid water waste in the shower by investing in a Moen Nurture Showerhead. A lowf l o w showerhead uses about 2.5 gallons of water per minute (GPM) as opposed to 6 GPM from old showerheads. • Double the efficiency of a kitchen faucet made before 1994 by installing a low-flow aerator. This quick, cost-efficient project along with a change in habits - can save hundreds of gallons a year. Get soaked in savings outdoors Use less water outdoors this summer while keeping landscaping looking hydrated and wellmaintained. • Fill planters, window boxes and landscaped areas with WaterWise plants, which can survive without constant watering. Choose from a variety of annuals
and perennials, including Lantana, Purple Fountain Grass, Zinnias and Oriental Poppies. • Promote a lush, emerald-green lawn with Pennington's Smart Seed which requires less water than
North Carolina traditional seed varieties. • Water the yard during the morning or evening when outdoor temperatures are cooler, which will minimize evaporation. • Help retain moisture by using mulch around landscaping and by using Sta-Green Moisture Max Potting Soil 16 Quart which has an exclusive AquaGuard water control formula that absorbs excess moisture to reduce the frequency of watering. • Install a drip irrigation system like Mister Landscaper Starter Kit which can reduce water usage by up to 50 percent when properly maintained. The low-pressure, low-volume delivery system will
help maximize water resources while getting the most from plants by keeping roots moist. By combining with a water timer to automate your system and protect your landscape investment, you'll also recapture precious minutes throughout the week. Visit Lowes.com/Videos for Water-Saving How-To Videos, Lowes.com/EfficientHome for more ideas on conserving water throughout the home, or Lowe's stores in the United States and Canada For a limited time, from August 1 through October 30, enjoy Free Next Day Delivery and Haul Away on all in-
3rd Sikh Education Conference announced India Post News Service
NEW JERSEY: Sikh Research Institute (Sikh RI) has announced a Sikh Education Conference in Bridgewater, New Jersey, on 26-27 September. It will bring together Sikh educators who work with children from Kindergarten to Grade 12 to discuss issues of utmost importance to Sikhi Education.
Over the last several years teachers and administrators at Gurmat and Panjabi Schools have craved a network in which they can share their teaching styles, knowledge base,
NEW JERSEY and passion for Sikhi Education. The Sikh Education Conference will kick off the Sikh Educators Network (SEN). Jasmine Kaur,
Sikh RI's Director of Education shares "we want to facilitate a Sikh Educators Network to help teachers and administrators at Gurmat and Panjabi Schools and Sikh Educators at large work together on issues pertinent to Sikhi education. Sharing of peer ideas and building a network is important to the success of schools and helps students learn better."
August 7, 2009
Community Across America
St. Louis Hindu Temple to celebrate Maha Kumbhabhishegam
'Chak De Bhangra' at White Sox baseball stadium
ST. LOUIS: The Hindu Temple of St Louis has announced celebrating its Maha Kubhabhishegam celebrations from October 1 to Oct 4 in a grand way. To kick start the MahaKumbhabhishegam preparations, the Hindu Temple created Steering Committee, chaired by Dr. Krishna Reddy and also various sub-committees. The Temple needs to raise $ 250,000 towards the expenses for Maha Kumbhasbhishegam alone in a
Missouri short period of 4 months. Hence the Fund Raising committee was formed, chaired by Dr Sharad Parikh and supported by Vice Chairman - Ashwin Patel and Members: G. V. Naidu, Rao Ayyagari, Sendil Rathinasabapathy, Rajya Laxmi Naidu, Anantharama Balachandran, J. Sawardekar, Suresh Shah and Puran Luthra. The Fund Raising committee
organized a Grand Fund Raiser Dinner on July 11 (Saturday) in the Temple Basement. The Event was attended by around 200 plus devotees and
Dr Parikh also presented the sponsorship details which helps the Temple to raise the required funds for meeting the expenses. The Temple raised 250,000 dollars thru pledges and donations at the fund raiser their families, among other initiatives to create awareness for the upcoming celebrations and getting the required support for the same from all. Following a prayer by Temple
Priest, Srinivasji, Dr Krishna Reddy, Chairman of the Maha Kumbhabhishegam Steering Committee welcomed the Attendees in his welcome address. That was followed by a detailed Power point Presentation by Dr Sharad Parikh on the Maha Kumbhabhishegam celebrations - The Importance of the Kumbha Abhishegam, Brief History of The Temple, the religious functions associated with the Kumbhabhishegam and the expense plan. Dr Parikh also presented the sponsorship details which helps the Temple to raise the required funds for meeting the expenses. The Temple raised 250,000 dollars thru pledges and donations at the fund raiser. In addition thru matching pledges an additional 202000 was raised; thus taking the total to over 450000 for the Hindu Temple of St Louis Ashwin Patel the Vice Chairman presented the vote of thanks to conclude a very successful start to the Temple Event.
University of Chicago "Balle Bhangra" team, and Rajinder Singh Mago of Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago at the Chicago White Sox Baseball Stadium U.S. Cellular Field, after performance of Punjabi folk dance Bhangra. Chicago White Sox were playing against Tampa Bay Rays. Contâ€™d from page 11
The upcoming PCS events are "Punjabi Sports Festival 2009" on Sunday, August 23 at Centennial Park, Addison, Il. The PCS Basketball Tournament on Saturday, August 22 will be held at Community Recreation Center, Addison, Il. The eighth PCS International Bhangra & Gidha Competition & Dinner Banquet will be held on Saturday, October 31at the Waterford Banquets, Elmhurst, Il.
August 7, 2009
Guru Nanak Foundation discusses Sri Kartarpur Sahib strategy An international delegation of Sikhs from all over the world should visit India and Pakistan and take up the matter on Central and State levels. It is important that the State governments in Chandigarh and Lahore take full interest in this matter. The meeting ended with Ardaas and langar.
JS BEDI India Post News Service
FONTANA: Los Angeles based Sri Guru Nanak Foundation held a meeting at the residence of Jathedar Rashpal Singh to discuss and devise future strategy for the Sri Kartarpur Sahib corridor. The meeting was attended by about fifteen likeminded intellectuals. The meeting began with a discussion on the importance and significance of Sri Kartarpur Sahib not only to the Sikhs but also to Hindus and Muslims. It was unanimously agreed that this corridor should be opened without any delay. There was also discussion on future strategy and plan of action to make this happen. It was agreed that the movement has to be global and not local. The media can play a big role in creating awareness and educating people on this
town holds special significance for the Sikhs as Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji spent eighteen years of his life here. At one time, Kartarpur Sahib was a major center for the Sikh population but after the partition, no habitation has been established here. There is a railway station (Darbar Sahib Kartarpur) that connects this small town to the rest of
An international delegation of Sikhs from all over the world should visit India and Pakistan and take up the matter on Central and State levels
Members of the Sri Guru Nanak Foundation
issue. It is imperative that the mainstream media in India, Pakistan and Indian and Pakistani media in other countries highlight this issue.
Representations should be made to Indian and Pakistani missions not only in the United States, but also in all countries that have sizeable Sikh communities.
Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib is located in town by the same name Kartarpur in Pakistan. The nearest town on the Indian side of the border is Dera Baba Nanak [1Km. from border] in district Gurdaspur. The shrine is located about 3 kms from the Indo-Pakistan border. The
Pakistan through the 'Chak Amru Line' The original abode established by Sri Guru Nanak was washed away by floods of the river Ravi and the present Gurudwara was established by Maharaja Ranjit Singh.
Sikh Children's Day at Lankershim Gurdwara
India Post News Service
LOS ANGELES: On Saturday, July 25, the Ujjaldidar Singh Memorial Foundation celebrated the 16th annual Sikh Children's Day competition at Lankershim Gurdwara. More than 300 children participated. Every year, Sikh Children's Day is celebrated in memory
else. Keeping this in mind and to spread his love for Sikhism, many members of the Sangat, along with his family and friends decided to create Ujjaldidar Singh Memorial Foundation. Presently, besides hosting the annual Sikh Children's Day competition, the Foundation operates the USMF Punjabi School, located in Granada Hills, CA and takes place in countless community service and cultural events
The Gatka and Basketball competitions were, as always, a success as children waited in long lines for participate, oblivious to the scorching hot weather. The young Gatka players looked beautiful in their Cholas and dastaars as they displayed their amazing Gatka skills of S. Ujjaldidar Singh; a bright, young, Amritdhari gursikh who was killed in an unfortunate accident in July of 1993 at the age of 16. He was a beloved and cherished member of the Sikh Sangat of Los Angeles. Ujjal loved being an Amritdhari Gursikh, above all
throughout the year. The Kirtan competition proved a very challenging one as hundreds of youngsters took part in each of the Kirtan groups. The youngsters enthralled the amazed Sangat with their impeccable understanding of Raag and
their melodious Shabads sung in beautiful voices. Even the judges, some of whom were professional ragis and all of whom were experts on the Raags, had to shake their heads at this unbelievable display of professionalism. The Tabla competition boasted over a hundred participants. The Kavita and Speech competitions also left the judges and sangat speechless. The Gatka and Basketball competitions were, as always, a success as children waited in long lines for participate, oblivious to the scorching hot weather. The young Gatka players looked beautiful in their Cholas and dastaars as they displayed their amazing Gatka skills. The basketball competition, as always, was a great hit with the younger and older participants alike. In the Gurbani reading and reciting competitions, youngsters displayed their knowledge of reading and reciting (out of memory) as many banis as they knew Contâ€™d on page 18
August 7, 2009
NRIs throng Rajasthani cooking and health event
Vegan Chai Making demonstration India Post News Service
LOS ANGELES: The Rajasthani Spice of Life cooking and health event took place on July 18 in Palos Verdes Peninsula library. Over 80 people participated and some guests had to sit 'Indian style' (on the floor, cross legged). It was organized by Etan Doronne, Creator of lecture series My India - Where Every Village is Home. Thanks to the support of Californian Indian media, the workshop had more NRIs then any of the previous events. Such atten-
dance brought the presentation to life, with comments, laughter and debate coming from people who grew up in India and know the tradition. Special guest, Mr. Deedwania, Food sampling intermission who is the R A N A (Rajasthani Association of North was offered for tasting to all atAmerica) president, arrived with tendees. The food at the event was his wife and prepared an authen- purely vegan. The event comprised a photo tic Rajasthani curry dish which presentation documenting the sources and delivery of milk, water, vegetables and spices in Rajasthan followed by explanations about traditional preparation, cooking and health benefits of each. Etan Doronne demonstrated the preparation of Chai Masala from its basic Vegan booklets ingredients.
Ekal Concert raises $32,000 for education in India India Post News Service
SUNNYVALE, CA: India has forgotten its youth in her rural and tribal regions but Ekal Vidyalaya has been trying to reach out and educate young children to instil in them self-confidence and an ability to make smart decision for their future. To help reach the goal of 100,000 schools by 2015, Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of USA Silicon Valley Chapter, hosted the Sushil Baweja group at a live concert to raise money for spreading education in rural and tribal India. The concert, held at the Sunnyvale Hindu Temple in Sunnyvale, CA, was a huge success as it was attended by more than 350 people and helped raise $32,000. "Although it took a lot of hardwork to organize this event, it was more than worth it as the money will allow the youth in India to become educated." said Parvinder Singh, Event Director. He added that he "was especially proud at the turnout and the amount of money raised." The funds raised will be used
to build non-formal, one-teacher schools in these villages that will provide free education to the children at times and locations that are most convenient for them. Sushil Baweja is a truly creative artist who received his early music lessons from his mother. He
The funds raised will be used to build nonformal, one-teacher schools in these villages that will provide free education to the children at times and locations that are most convenient for them has won many awards in India and abroad. Ashok Pandey, a renowned tabla maestro, has been honored by former president and former prime minister of India. Preet Prerana and Jaydeep Pandey are successful playback singers in Indian movies.
August 7, 2009
LA Gayatri Consciousness Center inaugurated India Post News Service
LOS ANGELES: The new All World Gayatri Pariwar-LA Gayatri Consciousness Center was inaugurated on July 22 by Dr. Pranavbhai Pandya, Head of All World Gayatri Pariwar, Shantikunj, Hardwar, India. The Gayatri Consciousness Center located in 2446 W. Orange Ave., Anaheim, was purchased just a week before inauguration. It was church property, a beautiful temple place, nice dinning room and lots of parking. Dr. Pranavbhai was very
Pranav Pandya, Anil Parekh, Mayor Tony Lima
to start the programs with the support of the community and in-
American national anthem by Krishna Parekh on stage Dr. Pranav, Mayor Tony Lima, Anil Parekh and others
pleased to see the facility. He blessed the center and urged it
terest of the youth. The center will soon begin regular activities
Harry Sidhu organizing India I-Day celebration India Post News Service
ANAHEIM, CA: Harry Sidhu, Anaheim City Councilman and Candidate for Orange County Supervisor 4th District, is holding the 4th Annual India's 62nd Independence Day celebration on August 16. The day will also mark the Kick-
off for Sidhu for OC Supervisor 2010. The event will be held 6.30 to 8.30 pm at The Sidhu Family residence, Elegant Old Yorba Estate, 145 S Vista Grande, Anaheim. There will be special elected official guests and fun, entertainment and taste of Indian cuisine.
Sikh Children's Day at Lankershim Gurdwara Cont’d from page 16
At the end of the long day, youngsters from cities all over California-Riverside, Selma, Huntington Beach, Rialto, Alhambra, Kingsburg, Buena Park, Arcadia, Buena Park, Los Angeles-just to name a few, took home trophies and made their cities and community proud. This year, the guest speaker, to the delight of the youngsters, was none other than "Magician Extraordinaire", Vikram Singh Khalsa who practices magic illusions while keeping his Sikhi image intact. Sardar Sarbjit Singh, the Master of Ceremonies, announced the names of the scholarship recipi-
ents. Four deserving individuals, Hashroop K. Gurm, Chanderbhan S. Sandhu, Jasmit S. Nijjar and Prabhdeep S. Kehal, who will be starting college in the fall of 2009,
This year, the guest speaker, to the delight of the youngsters, was ‘Magician Extraordinaire’ Vikram Singh Khalsa were given $500.00 scholarships to help start their college careers. This year, the scholarships were sponsored by Nanak Parchar Sabha and The Sikh Spirit Foundation of San Antonio.
including weekly yoga, yogapranayam class and daily aarti etc. Deep Yagna was organized with participation of community leaders like Rajnibhai Patel of BAPS, Anil Parekh of IASH, Vinod Bhindi and Karshanbhai Bhindi of Bhindi Jewelers and
Anil Parekh with Mayor Tony Lima, Dr. Ami Bera running for Congress and Assembly member representative Jayday and Manu Patel Dur
many other prominent people. On July 24, Dr Pranav Pandya gave a discourse on Scientific Spirituality which was attended by more than 300 people. Awards were given to Dr Pandya and also to Anil Parekh for his community seva and leadership by Assem-
bly member Tony Mendoza and Artesia City Mayor Tony Lima. The event was attended by prominent people like B.U. Patel, Ukabhai Solanki, Manu Patel, President Rotary Club, Ashok Patnaik from city of Cerritos and Dr Ami Bera.
So Cal Muslims participate in UK Convention India Post News Service
Chino, CA: Several local Ahmadi Muslim families traveled to London, England to participate in the 43rd Annual Convention of the UK Ahmadiyya Muslim Association. Also on Sunday, July 19 members of the local community gathered at various mosques, worship centers and in their own homes, joined with millions of others throughout the world, via live satellite connection, in the renewal of their Pledge of Initiation into the Community. This year over 400,000 new members joined the Community throughout the world. Prior to renewing their pledge Imam Shamshad reminded the members of the ten conditions of Initiation into the Community. Central to these conditions is belief in the absolute Unity of God and that Muhammad is the Messenger of God and the Seal of the
Initiation at Hand of Khalifatul Masih July 26
Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad the world Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama'at. In his address he spoke of the need for all Ahmadis to work towards improving the impression of Islam within the media and society at large. He said 'so called' Muslims had hijacked the name of
His Holiness then delivered an hour long address in which he spoke of the importance of righteousness which he defined as being attained through the worship of God Almighty and through service to humanity Prophets. It is our duty to worship God and serve His creation clinging to the spiritual leadership that Allah has established in this age through the Imam Mahdi and Promised Messiah, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. The 43rd Annual Convention opened with the Friday Sermon delivered by His Holiness,
Islam for their own gain and because of this it was now falsely portrayed as a religion of hatred, rather than a religion of peace. The traditional 'Flag Hoisting' ceremony took place at 4.30pm. His Holiness raised the 'Liwa-eAhmadiyya' which is the Flag of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama'at. This was followed by the raising
of the Union Jack as a means to manifest the loyalty of the Jama'at in the UK towards the country and its people. The first full session began thereafter and was initially addressed by Tom Brake the Lib Dem MP for Carshalton and Wallington; by Paul Burstow the Lib Dem MP for Sutton and Cheam; by Justine Greening the Conservative MP for Putney and by Baroness Emma Nicholson a member of the House of Lords and a long standing human rights activist. Each of the guests took the opportunity to congratulate the Jama'at on the occasion of the Jalsa and to commend the Jama'at for its continued peaceful message and humanitarian relief. His Holiness then delivered an hour long address in which he spoke of the importance of righteousness which he defined as being attained through the worship of God Almighty and through service to humanity.
August 7, 2009
Community Across America
India Post 19
Grand 5-day celebrations mark renovation of Jain Center
Chairman and President with Vidhikar Narendrabhai Nandu from Mumbai Cont’d from page 12
lution, major jirnoddhar (renovation) project was undertaken in 2009 which included the On completion of 26 years, due to in- construction of new Gabhara, addition of crease in memberships to over 1500 fami- Bhamti, upgraded interior light-scapping, expanded Rang Mandap and 3 Shikhars. JCNJ is among the 67 Jain Centers in North America. JCNJ practices the Jain philosophy and religion as preached by Bhagwan Mahavir 2600 years ago and all preceding 23 Tirthankars before him putting in action the core tenets given by them - ahimsa, aprigraha and anekant among others. The renovated Derasar is JCNJ Chairman (center), Prez and some members of BOT and good to accommodate EC (standing from left - Himanshu Shah, Dinesh Chheda, Vinay people for normal day to day Vakani, Chandrakant Mehta, Chairman Nitin Talsania (Center) religious activities. Howwith Mother Lilaben Talsania, Madhu Kamdar, Anil Shah, Jayant ever, it is not enough to acSheth (seated from left - President Rashmi Shah, Yogesh Shah, commodate large crowds of Usha Gandhi, Devang Shah) over 2000 people in big lies, temple was always overcrowded and events. To overcome this problem, JCNJ has short of parking place. As a reasonable so- purchased a 9 acre land in Franklin Town-
Raytel launches 'all you can talk' to India Cont’d from page 12
Bhailal Patel, Raytel Public Relations Director and Member Advisory Board, and an American Indian community leader said he was excited to be part of Raytel. "What enthused me was the ability to make calls to USA using the same plan that I use to call India from USA. This makes it possible for parents, relatives and friends to call me or anyone in USA" Mr. Patel said. Rick Riviere, Raytel's Technology Partner with substantially teleconferencing experience announced another unique product - Audio and Web Conferencing options. This product can be used by group of people from India and USA who can call to a common bridge and communicate with each other. Not only it offers top quality voice but also has an option to dial out to a person who is required for the meeting. Participants can also share a document over the web. This product can be very useful for small business (IT, Engineering etc), extended
families spread across USA and India, for long distance learning, religious discourses etc. Some of the highlights are • Call from USA to India and from India to USA using one Raytel Smart Plan • One of the best calling Plans between USA and India - average cost per minute as low as 2 cents per minute. • 'All you can talk' - anytime , to any number, anywhere from USA to India and anywhere from India to USA for only $24.99 per month • On line Call summary and call details to track usage of plan • One minute rounding, no fees, no surcharges and no other hidden costs. • Audio and Web Conferencing options between USA and India • Quality and Customer Service as top priority with 24x7 Customer support • Best Calling Rates to anywhere in the world from USA. • Soon - Options to call from India to anywhere in the World using a Raytel Plan.
ship, New Jersey. Alluding to two mega projects undertaken by JCNJ - the Caldwell temple
Procession dances - a close-up
Jirnoddhar and the construction of the brand new multi-million dollar new deraser, Nitin Talsania said, "The Construction is progressing well and we expect the construction of the new Deraser to complete at the end of 2010 with Pratistha in 2011. Our gatherings often consist of 2500-3000 people so it will be a big relief to be able to address existing space constraints with the completion of our new 54000 square feet Deraser facility."
20 India Post
August 7, 2009
Sen. Bayh's wife's earnings in spotlight INDIANAPOLIS: The wife of U.S. Sen. Evan Bayh is collecting lucrative payouts from some of the same health care companies that would be most impacted by Congress' proposed overhaul of the nation's health care system. The Indiana Democrat contends that the $2.1 million his wife, Susan, earned by serving on the boards of public health-care companies from 2006 to 2008 represents no conflict of interest. But The Indianapolis Star reports that watchdog groups question those payments, partly because Evan Bayh's positions are unclear on many issues related to health-care reform. -AP
Suspect in US abortion killing faces hearing WICHITA, Kansas: The man accused of killing one of the few late-term abortion providers in the U.S. will get his first look this week at the evidence against him, even as he has called the shooting of Dr. George Tiller justified. Scott Roeder, 51, is charged with one count of first-degree murder in Tiller's death and two counts of aggravated assault for allegedly threatening two ushers who tried to stop him during the May 31 melee in the foyer of the doctor's church. Tiller, 67, had been the target of relentless protests for most of the 36 years that he performed abortions at his Wichita clinic, where he practiced as one of the nation's few providers of late-term abortions. He was shot in both arms by an antiabortion activist in 1993, and his family said the doctor had been repeatedly threatened over the years. -AP
Hospital's new suite makes labs, X-rays easier HENDERSON, Ky.: Methodist Hospital calls it's new ``three-inone'' services site a suite. But patients like 82-year-old James Hogan are more apt to call it ``sweet.'' Hogan, a local resident, is very pleased with the hospital's ``Suite 103'' in the Atkinson Medical Building where a number of laboratory services, an anticoagulation clinic, and a home medical supply ``storefront'' section are available in one location. ``It's a real good setup,'' said Hogan, who happened to be the first ``customer'' in the anticoagulation clinic when it opened in mid-July. -AP
Health Science 21
August 7, 2009
Investigation of worker's death finds violations BOISE, Idaho: Federal officials investigating the May death of a worker at the Amalgamated Sugar factory in Nampa have found three serious violations and fined the company $18,900. -AP
Ethnic minorities encouraged to join marrow/stem cell registry SRIREKHA N. CHAKRAVARTY India Post News Service
NEW YORK: In a rare instance of stem cell donation, Vivek Kumar, a 32-year-old Mountain View, California man of Indian descent, has donated his stem cells for a second transplant in one-and-half years for the same patient. Kumar, who serves on the advisory board of the Asian American Donor Program, a 20-year-old nonprofit organization with offices in Alameda, CA, said he was happy to help though it was unusual to donate stem cells more than once. In January 2008, Kumar initially donated his stem cells. The patient was in remission, but with the patient's cancer cells coming back, doctors were hopeful that another stem cell transplant would help save her life. Kumar spoke to India Post from the hospital minutes before he went in for the procedure and minutes after the procedure as he drove back home. In a concerted bid to create awareness among the South Asian community Kumar talked about the many myths surrounding marrow/stem cell donation.
The fact that he could walk in and walk out before and after the stem cell donation, dispels the myth that someone giving stem cells cannot work or engage in everyday activities, he said The fact that he could walk in and walk out before and after the stem cell donation, dispels the myth that someone giving stem cells cannot work or engage in everyday activities, he said. "The ease of donation is another myth people don't realize. Technology
is really advanced and the machine is really cool; it draws blood from one arm and puts it back in me through the other arm and it's as simply as that I am going to be saving a life, not just of the individual, but helping her entire family. Kumar further explained that
there are myths around how painful the procedure of drawing stem cells is. "It's not such a painful experience at all. People think they would need to go through anesthesia and have needles stuck in the pelvic bone to draw bone marrow. That only happens in less than 30 percent of the cases today. With technological advancements, over 70 percent cases are through the stem cell donation process." To prepare for the donation, for five consecutive days the donor receives shots of Filgrastim. The Filgrastim boosts a person's stem cell production and moves it into the blood stream. After the five days, the donor will have three times the number of stem cells as he would normally have. Seventy percent of donations are by giving stem cell donations in this manner. It's a non-invasive process. There is no anesthesia and the donor will be completely awake. The side effects of the Filgrastim shots are a bit flu-like, explains Kumar. "But nothing a few Tylenols cannot fix. In fact on my third day I performed an African Cont’d on page 23
Obama writes to Indian American on healthcare CHICAGO: Days after receiving a "meaningful" response from President Barack Obama to her thoughts on the controversial issue of health care reform, a Chicago-based Indian-American woman has said she hopes the political leaders in India too adopt a "humane approach" to problems faced by 'aam aadmi'. Sunita Chopra had written a letter to President Obama a month ago about how she had to struggle with huge medical bills during the treatment of her mother who is suffering from severe osteoporosis. She got Obama's reply in a White House envelope recently. After seeing Obama scrambling hard to push for health care reform, Chopra thought of sharing her story with him and give him an advice on the issue. "I had never expected to get
a response to my letter. I wish political leaders in India too adopt this humane approach and the common man in India is heard the same way," Chopra told PTI. She said if leaders in India respond to problems of the masses in a similar manner, they would win con-
voiced. I watched as my ailing mother struggled with stacks of insurance forms in the last moments of her life. This is not who we are as a nation: together, we will fix the health care system," Obama said in the letter.
Sunita Chopra had written a letter to President Obama a month ago about how she had to struggle with huge medical bills during the treatment of her mother who is suffering from severe osteoporosis fidence of the people and the common man would also be encouraged to support them and work with them. In the letter, Obama cited the problems faced by his own mother as she battled cancer. "I share the sense of urgency that Americans like you have
"Since I took office, we have done more to advance the cause of health care reform than we have in the previous decade...The rising cost of health care is the most pressing financial challenge for families and for our nation, and controlling this cost is essential
to bringing down the federal deficits we inherited," he added. Chopra said the fact that she got a "meaningful" response from the President in two weeks after writing to him shows how "sensitive he is to people's issues and his promptness indicates that he means business". Obama also states in the letter that while tough choices need to be made, "I will bring businesses and workers, health care providers and patients, and Democrats and Republicans together to create a system that delivers better care and puts the nation on a much sounder long-term fiscal path." Excited to see the White House envelope in her mail box, Chopra said she intended to frame the "one-page, 7-paragraph letter ... and signed by Obama" and treasure it for life. -PTI
Health Science Post
August 7, 2009
BAPS Charities organizes Health Fair India Post News Service
CHINO HILLS, CA: This summer, President Obama is calling on all Americans young and old, from every background, all across this country - to participate in "United We Serve", a nationwide service initiative that will help meet growing social needs resulting from the economic downturn. BAPS Charities contributed in the Community Service by organizing Health fairs, Blood Donation Drives and health awareness. On Sunday June 19, BAPS Charities hosted a health fair at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir Chino Hills, CA, providing free check ups and numerous tests for over 425 participants. To help support this beneficial cause, practicing physicians, health specialists, medical students and USC Pharmacy students volunteered their precious time and gave free consultations to patients and educated them about various health-related aspects. Over 75 medical professionals including doctors, pharmacists, dentists and nurses carried out more than 30 different types of examinations. The screenings included CBC, metabolic panel, lipid levels, glaucoma and vision screenings, bone density, and much more. Moreover, cardiologists, neurologists, ophthalmologists, and
podiatrist specialists provided individual consultations. The Health Fair was inaugurated by Dr. Shephal Doshi, Director, Cardiac Electrophysiology and Pacing at Saint John's Health Center and Pacific Heart Institute. Also present were Bobby Griffith, representative from California State Assemblyman Curt
to see so many professionals from all fields of medicine come together with BAPS and help the community. It was beneficial and I highly recommend that everyone in the community should come and take part in this grand event," said Thao NGO, DDS Recognizing the need to educate the public on the ever-growing concerns of oral
To help support this beneficial cause, practicing physicians, health specialists, medical students and USC Pharmacy students volunteered their precious time and gave free consultations to patients and educated them about various health-related aspects Hagman's office and Roman Nava, representative from County of San Bernadino Supervisor Gary Ovitt's office. Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Doshi said, "At a time when quality health care, routine check-ups and medical consultations are hardly affordable and largely inaccessible to many, BAPS Charities Health Fairs have been of great help to a lot of people providing educating seminars, free examinations and basic tests." Bobby Griffith and Roman Nava awarded Proclamations to BAPS Charities from their respective offices because of the growing success of the involvement of BAPS Charities to the community. "This event was so exciting. I was thrilled
care, high cholesterol and diabetes, diet, nutrition, and fitness, experts from the field also conducted seminars on these topics to increase public awareness and knowledge about prevention and care. Additionally, Obstetrics and gynecologists provided information on women's health and importance of annual screenings such as mammograms and pap smears. Also, children learned about proper eating, sleeping and exercising habits through interactive presentations and displays.
In addition to the health screenings and consultations, a blood drive was coordinated through LifeStream (formerly The Blood Bank of San Bernardino and riverside Counties). Over 100 people registered to donate and 89 pints of blood were collected. Erin Davidson, a R.N. for LifeStream stated "We're impressed with the turnout and the willingness of this community to help save lives. Each blood donation saves the lives of 3 people. There's a generous spirit here". "It was a very productive and positive experience. We were able to interact with cross sections of our community and got to work with fellow pharmacists. I got to help people find answers about their health and it was great," said Neemish Patel, Pharmacist. "We are pleased to be able to provide this service to the members of Chino Hills community with the help of physicians that volunteered their time to make this event a success," said Divyesh Patel BAPS Charities event organizer. Supporting President's, call for service "we are also going to organize a Health Lecture on August 2 and a walkathon benefiting American Diabetes Association on September 19," he said.
Visiting nurses go where needed TULSA, Okla.: They have tended their ten, nurses must find the patients food or patients under bridges, in tent cities, and clothing. in the starkest of homes. ``These are people whose bare necesTheir patients are often those nobody sities of life need to be met before they wants to hear about but whose lives de- can get healthy,'' she said. pend on the constant care of the nurses One of the agency's patients is Mary who work for the Visiting Nurse Associa- Alice Warren, 49, who lives in a tiny, neat tion of Tulsa. apartment in the Comanche Park public ``These are people who have no Medi- housing complex. She tore her rotator cuff care, no Medicaid, no resources. Nobody at work and went home after shoulder surelse wants to see them,'' said George Beilke, gery with methicillin resistant staphylothe organization's CEO for 28 years. ``Our coccus aureus, or MRSA. job is to get them back on their feet.'' Two additional surgeries later, she is still Many can't afford to pay for their utili- battling the virulent staph infection. But ties, and some are homeless. she's doing it at home with intravenous Home Health Director Marsha Dunham antibiotics and the help of nurse case mansaid: ``We're not cute. ager Yvonne Simmons. We're not pretty. We're a ``I don't know what I 'These are people would do without them,'' reality show.'' Most of the agency's paWarren said. ``They have tients are ``hardworking, whose bare come out in the middle of good people in a bad place,'' the night even if I have a she said. ``What I say is necessities of life problem. It's a blessing to they are all a member of the have them.'' human race and should be need to be met Dunham said the home treated with dignity.'' health program saves huge Caring for people with before they can costs by helping people medical needs right where manage health problems they are is the core mission get healthy' outside of hospitals. of the Visiting Nurse As``They are not going to sociation of Tulsa, which was created in the emergency room, and their disease is 1981. not progressing,'' she said. About 25 percent of the program is The association provides other fee-forfunded by the Tulsa Area United Way, service programs to keep the home health and the rest is paid for with revenues program going, including providing from the agency's primary fundraiser _ wellness services in both Tulsa and Oklathe flu and pneumonia shot program, homa City. Those include travel immuniDunham said. zations and diabetic foot care. ``When people come to VNA for their The fact that the $4.5 million agency flu shot, they help support us giving back has diversified its services and revenue to the community,'' she said. sources has kept it rock-solid during the The Visiting Nurse Association pro- recession, Beilke said. vides about 8,700 nurse visits per year to ``We're a much different agency than a patients who have no other recourse. Of- traditional nonprofit,'' he said. -AP
Health Science Post
August 7, 2009
Ethnic minorities encouraged to join marrow/stem cell registry Cont’d from page 21
step dance routine with my wife's dance troupe at a graduation ceremony and it involves some heavy stomping," laughs Kumar. "I have been going to work, driving and going through all the routine stuff, even now at the hospital, I am not on a stretcher." For the donation, medical staff inserts a needle in one arm of the donor, where they draw blood. It goes through a machine, where they remove the donor stem cells. That blood is then returned through an IV in his other arm. "I feel like I'm a space man hooked up to this futuristic machine," Kumar said as he went through the procedure. "They have TV and WiFi in the room. I can work and relax." Kumar was a volunteer for the Asian American Donor Program in 2005 and 2006. He personally scheduled some 20 marrow/stem cell drives to encourage South Asians to join the 'Be the Match Registry'. Little did he know that he would be a match and be called upon to donate for a patient in need. "Its funny how life turns out," Kumar says, commenting on this irony. Considering there are over 2.5
million Indian Americans, there are only about 100,000 stem cell donors registered on the NMDP registry. "It's a numbers game," he says. As part of his strategic role at the AADP, Kumar is tackling the twin challenges of recruitment and retention. The first is to increase the number of South Asians (and all minority groups, as well as indi-
'There is over a 50 percent chance that the person will say no if he is from the South Asian community if he is found to be a match for a needy patient' viduals of bi-racial heritage) on the Be the Match Registry. The second challenge is to educate people about how simple giving stem cells is. That way, when they are contacted and advised that they are a match, they will donate. Kumar says he is baffled by the tendency of South Asians wherein even if they register to donate, they do not come forward
when actually called upon to donate their stem cells. "There is over a 50 percent chance that the person will say no if he is from the South Asian community if he is found to be a match for a needy patient," he says. "And that is really sad because the patient finally finds a match and the donor say 'no'. So one of the challenges is to find out why this happens, says Kumar. "It could be because of religious reasons or family pressure where parents are not comfortable with the idea of an only son or daughter going through the process," he says. There have been instances where the patient, upon finding a match, has traveled long distances and had to go back because the donor did not show up. "Historically, we have seen that the South Asian community is willing to register, but not willing to donate once called as a match for a patient in need," adds Carol Gillespie, executive director of AADP. "This is troubling. Clearly more education about the need and how relatively easy it is to save a life needs to happen. That's what AADP does." A marrow/stem cell transplant
may be the only chance for patients with leukemia or other blood cancers to survive. Those who are not Caucasians are more likely to die of these illnesses. This is because there is a shortage of multi-ethnic donors on the 'Be the Match Registry', operated by the National Marrow Donor Program (NMDP). "Only thirty percent of the time can a searching patient find a match from one of his or her siblings," Gillespie says. "The rest of the time a patient depends upon the generosity of a complete stranger. It's like finding a needle in a haystack."
Due to patient/donor confidentiality and privacy, Kumar does not know the identity of the person whose life he is potentially saving. "People ask me how I can do something like this, and I say, how can I not do something like this?" says Kumar. "How often will I get a chance to save someone's life -- probably the only time I can save or extend someone's life and give hope and happiness to a complete stranger." To join the registry, go to www.aadp.org and go to the web page that lists drives.
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August 7, 2009
he brawny Salman Khan had a tough time on Farah Khan's show when his mum and dad took the centre stage and gave a tell-all account of his personal life! Salma Khan, Salman's mother made the actor squirm on his seat as she went all to unravel his life on choreographer/director Farah Khan's forthcoming show 'Tere Mere Beech Mein'. "Though it started off as a Salman Khan show, it was soon evident that the star was Salma Aunty. She was candid and natural and stole the show from her superstar son. She broke so many of Salman's bhaandas that at one point an embarrassed Salman actually didn't know where to look even as the audience was very amused", said a member of the audience. If this wasn't all, Salman's dad, Salim Khan gave one of his most controversial statements when he said "Salman always falls in love with actresses but then wants them to give up everything and stay at home much like the most special woman in his lifeâ€Ś his mother. He has been spoilt silly by his mother."
oddess of beauty Katrina Kaif gave out shocking confessions about her personal and pro-fessional life in a famous magazine. The Superstar, who carries her boyfriend's picture all times, says she is happy in her current relationship but has no plans to marry this year. She said that though Salman is ready to tie the knot, she still isn't. Apart from that, Kat gave out clarifications about her alleged link up with Ajab Prem Ki Gajab Kahaani co-star, Ranbir Kapoor, Salman's latest muse Claudia Ciesla etc. O.K., at last Katrina is ready to marry Salman but only after making her career.
eeling a bit miffed at all the media coverage about Nayantara's move to Bollywood, rival southern belle Shriya Saran has announced, "If Nayantara is like gold, I am like platinum. I have no competitor. I have gone not just to Bollywood, but I have also been part of English films too. That's why I say I have no comparison." Shriya is currently working hard in the innovative Malayalam film industry in Kerala known colloquially as Mollywood. In Mallanna (Kanthaswamy) with Vikram, she wears a short, sexy bob hairstyle and takes on a negative role. Shriya's Kollywood movie Kutty sees an interesting shift in direction for her. She has shed her glam image which involves her exploring her acting talents opposite Dhanush. This is a trend that she hopes to develop further in future movies. The film also features an item number from Meghna Naidu.
August 7, 2009
bhishek Bachchan and Katrina Kaif will feature together in the remake of Hollywood blockbuster The Hangover. Producer Firoz Nadiadwala has purchased the rights of the film. The film would be directed by Anees Bazmee. In the comedy, four men travel to Las Vegas for a 24hour stag party. They wake up with the worst hangover and find that the groom is missing, as they try to recall the details of the debauched night. Abhishek Bachchan will play the role played by Bradley Cooper and Paresh Rawal will step into the shoes of Zach Galifianakis. Katrina Kaif will play the role of the fiancĂŠe. Sanjay Dutt and Riteish Deshmukh also figure in the film.
amal Haasan's apple of eye, Shruti, has grown into a big girl. One movie old Shruti is very keen to be independent and create a niche for herself in the big world of cinema. A singer, music composer and actress, Shruti has send ripples in Bollywood and also in her Southern hometown. Bollywood being her launch pad for acting, Shruti is planning to shift her base to Mumbai. Sources revealed, "Shruti has been looking out for an apartment for herself, she is all prepared to make it big on silver screen and it's very difficult for this pretty lass to travel in and out." After Luck she has few good offers in her kitty and wants to concentrate on Bollywood. Of course, her passion for singing and music will always remain her priority," the sources further added. Looks like after Asin, this starlet is the next actress to hop in and out of North and South abodes.
onam Kapoor loves to talk straight. When she was recently quizzed about wearing a bikini the Saawariya actress repled she had no qualms in wearing one. In a very candid manner Sonam had worn angarkhas, salwar-kameez, bandana, jeans, skirts, gunjee etc as the script demanded. She added that if it was a beach scene she would like to wear a bikini. A smiling Sonam said that she wore bikini in her real life and it is no issue for her to appear on-screen in a bikini. Sonam will be next seen in the movie I Hate Love Stories opposite opposite Bollywood's chocolaty hero Imran Khan. The movie will be directed by Punit Malhotra.
India Post News Service
The collaboration was facilitated by Music is Nirvana, a leading content aggregator of South Asian music and movies in the US. As part of its joint venture with Cinsay, Music Is Nirvana will
NEW YORK: Bollywood's leading singing talent Sonu Nigam has joined forces with Cinsay, a media and software company, in a unique collaboration to bring the star closer to the millions of fans and consumers in the US. In conjunction with Sonu Nigam's latest US concert tour Explosion 2009, the content-to-commerce partnership enables Cinsay to bring access to exclusive, neverbefore-seen performance, rehearsal and behind-the-scenes video footage, music videos and branded consumer products, including new clothing and merchandise line, to fans in the US and elsewhere. The footage and the merchandise line will be available at www.cinsay.com/sonu
August 7, 2009
ment was made at a well-attended press conference at Pranna restaurant in midtown Manhattan on July 28. In attendance
Sonu closer to US fans
bring on board more South Asian talent to create music portals and merchandising opportunities. The collaboration's formal announce-
were Sonu Nigam, Cinsay executive director Morgan Lang and Nick Rajsakha, CEO of Music Is Nirvana. Contâ€™d on page 28
August 7, 2009
Sherawat, Producer Harry Baweja are some of the celebrities coming to Jinnder's 18th Annual pageant Miss India America, a starstudded Red Carpet gala on August 7 at the Long Beach Hilton. It will be a night celebrating Bollywood and Hollywood. The event will also feature Mr & Mrs. India America. The show will be aired at a later date in over 25 countries. Sahara One Television and South Asia
Sikandar, Parvarish, Hera Pheri, Jism, Chandni, etc. Punjabi cinema's leading lady Kimmi Verma has also confirmed her presence. Kimmi is the leading lady of Punjabi cinema and is best known for blockbusters like Asan Nu Maan Wattana Da, Jee Aya Nu, Mera Pind and Sat Sri Akal. Other celebrities include Miss India Globe 2008 Justine Dharni, Hollywood Ac-
Miss India America's red carpet gala on Aug 7 Kimmi Verma India Post News Service
LOS ANGELES: Bollywood legend Vinod Khanna, Cheetah Girls singer Kiely Williams, Actress Lisa Ray, Actress Mallika India Post News Service
TORONTO: Karen David, the rising Hollywood star who was seen in last summer's action movie: 'Scorpion King 2: Rise of Warrior' will be the Guest of Honor at the 19th Annual Miss India-Canada Event. The show will be held on Saturday, August 22 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel. Karen will be presented with a Special Achievement Award at this year's event. The show will once again be supported by Rogers, OM Financial, Payal Convention Centre and India Tourism. Indian born Karen won a scholarship at 17 to the prestigious Berkley College of Music in Boston, to study jazz and gospel, where she discovered her flair for songwriting. A few years later, she moved to England to study at The Guildford School of Acting and, the moment she announced, "I Have a Dream", Benny and Bjorn snapped her up to join the original cast of the hit musical, "Mamma Mia!" Film director, Shekhar Kapur, brought his friend, the legend of Indian music, and now of "Slumdog Millionaire" fame, Double Oscar winning, A R Rahman, who was developing "Bombay Dreams" at the time, down to see the show. Rahman was impressed by Karen and asked her to assist him and lyricist Don Black, in the development of the material for Bombay Dreams. Her reward was to be invited to perform some of the songs on stage on an acclaimed sell-out US and Canada tour. This was the start of a friendship that has led to Karen writing and recording with A R Rahman at his studios in Chennai, India. So, whilst Karen was taking the time in the studio to develop her unique "exotic pop" sound, her acting career has been getting bigger and bigger. Her very first film was with James McAvoy and Ian McShane in the Brit cult flick, "Bollywood
Magazine are presenting the event, with copresenters JINmodels.com and Dr. Darshan Shah of Beautologie Malibu. Coming down the red carpet (starting 5pm) will be Bollywood legend Vinod Khanna, who will be receiving the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award. Vinod's hits include: Qurbani, Mukaddar Ka
tress Rekha Sharma of Battlestar Galactica, Hollywood Actor Marco Khan of 10,000 BC & Iron Man, Mr. India Globe 2008 Vikas Mehandroo, Celebrity Trainer Rehan Jalali, Miss India America 2008 Ridhi Patel, Producer Brad Listermann of My Faraway Bride, Miss South Asia 2008 Gunjan Nanda, and many others.
The event will also feature Mr & Mrs. India America. The show will be aired at a later date in over 25 countries. Sahara One Television and South Asia Magazine are presenting the event, with copresenters JINmodels.com and Dr. Darshan Shah of Beautologie Malibu
Karen David to be honored at Miss India-Canada 2009 As Asha, in the hard-hitting "Provoked", she starred opposite Aishwarya Rai, Miranda Richardson, Naveen Andrews and Robbie Coltrane. Later this year, Karen will be seen in a cool cameo role in "Couples Retreat", opposite Hollywood heavyweights, Vince Vaughn, Jon Favreau, Kristen Bell, Jason Bateman and Faizon Love. Upcoming is a role with Bipasha Basu in "Quick Slip Me A Bride" due to start filming later this year Queen". She then landed a role in Batman Begins, and co-starred with Stephen Grahame and James Lance, in Johnny Vaughn's cult favourite made for MTV Europe, "Top Buzzer." Kevin Macdonald snapped her up to costar in his short film, "Eureka", and she co-starred opposite Steven Segal in "Flight of Fury". As Asha, in the hard-hitting "Provoked", she starred opposite Aishwarya Rai, Miranda Richardson, Naveen Andrews and Robbie Coltrane. Later this year, Karen will be seen in a cool cameo role in "Couples Retreat", opposite Hollywood heavyweights, Vince Vaughn, Jon Favreau, Kristen Bell, Jason Bateman and Faizon Love. Upcoming is a role with Bipasha Basu in "Quick Slip Me A Bride" due to start filming later this year. Karen is releasing her first single, "Magic Carpet Ride", an epic musical homage to Asha Bhonsle's Bollywood blockbuster "Dum Maro Dum" and working towards the release of her album.
August 7, 2009 www.indiapost.com
Contâ€™d from page 26
"The Internet is clearly the future of entertainment, and I am very excited to be collaborating and working with such a progressive team as Cinsay," said Sonu Nigam. "In addition to creating original content which will help my fans see me in different situations than they are used to, Cinsay and I are working together to create a line of apparel and merchandise which reflects my passion for performing. I hope fans around the world will enjoy these new designs." Added Matthew Papish, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cinsay, "The time has come for a huge explosion of Bollywood entertainment and merchandise to hit the US, thanks to the success of films like 'Slumdog Millionaire,' and stars like Sonu already have tremendous fan bases throughout the world. We are pleased to be working with Sonu to help bring
Sonu closer to US fans America. With our partnership with Cinsay, we are very excited to promote Sonu's merchandise and content and plan to sign on
From, left, Morgan Lang, executive director of Cinsay; leading singer Sonu Nigam and Nick Rajsakha, CEO of Music Is Nirvana, at a press conference in New York City July 28, to announce a unique US-Bollywood partnership -Pic Anhad
his talent and passion to existing fans, as well as an entirely new audience through Cinsay's hugely popular enterprise software platform "content-to-com-
merce" and vast digital network." Nick Rajsakha, CEO of Music Is Nirvana said, "We are very committed to promoting South Asian talent on various platforms across
Sonu Nigam recently launched his US concert tour, Explosion 2009, with performances at Washington, DC's Patriot Center and the Special Events Center in Garland (Dallas), TX more leading artists." Sonu Nigam recently launched his US concert tour, Explosion 2009, with performances at Washington, DC's Patriot Center and the Special Events Center in Gar-
land (Dallas), TX. He is playing at large venues in each city, and all concerts are expected to sell out. The newly-designed merchandise will be available at each venue. Through August, he is scheduled to perform in Atlantic City, Los Angeles, Houston, Oakland (CA), Denver and Orlando. Cinsay Inc. is a fully-integrated media and software company which specializes in several proprietary content-to-commerce technology platforms and applications driving revenue through the creation and delivery of entertainment, advertising, licensing and merchandising. Music Is Nirvana seeks to distribute South Asian music and entertainment content on various platforms across North America. The company also aims to become a worldwide developer and publisher of Bollywood and South Asian music, movies, mobile and digital entertainment content.
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India Post 29
August 7, 2009 www.indiapost.com
Engendered announces 'I View Film 2009' India Post News Service
NEW YORK: Engendered, a transnational arts and human rights organization aimed at creating awareness around gender and sexuality in the South Asian Diaspora, is presenting 'I View Film 2009', its second annual film festival. This cutting-edge film festival brings together a body of bold and contemporary cinematic work that provides a new lens with which to view South Asian cinema. Films
closing film "Luck By Chance" are two of the major Bollywood blockbusters that involve themes of sexuality and gender inequity, a clear indication of the topical nature of such social issues. The film festival will be held at the Lincoln Center and Asia Society in New York from August 28-30. I View Film intends to engage, uplift and transform viewer perceptions around women's issues, minority and health rights, as well as the LGBT community. Spread over three days, the diverse lineup
Luck By Chance
range from Bollywood to independent Hollywood to eclectic shorts and documentaries from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, as well as the Diaspora in the United States and Australia. This year, the film festival's opening film "Dostana" and the
includes ground-breaking, independent productions such as the critically-acclaimed "Let's Talk" by Ram Madhvani and "The Ode" by Ghalib Shiraz Dhalla that premiered at the Los Angeles Outfest last year. The line up also includes international, award-winning hu-
man rights shorts and documentaries like "My Daughter the Terrorist" and "Searching For Sundeep." Dialog and discourse form an integral part of I View Film - all the screenings will be followed by discussions and panels with the key cast members, film personalities
‘The festival reveals and provokes newer ways of seeing and understanding the changing landscape of South Asian intimacies, desires and sexualities’ and academics. "Dostana" is the first major Bollywood movie to openly talk about homosexuality, and the New York Times raves "it irreverently normalizes a topic that has been virtually absent from screen in India." For "Dostana," the director Tarun Mansukhiani will be joined by lead actor John Abraham and supporting actors Boman Irani and Kirron Kher. Director, Zoya Akhtar, will present her film "Luck By Chance" at the festival. A huge box-office success in India, it is a biting satire and insider look at gender disparity in Bollywood's competitive film industry; the New York Times says "it might seem as if Bollywood couldn't possibly satirize itself…but Zoya Akhtar manages the trick deftly." Another key highlight of the festival is that Bollywood celebrities will share the stage with USbased film personalities, such as Mira Nair and Mehreen Jabbar for a plenary on the opening night to
kick off the festival. "The festival reveals and provokes newer ways of seeing and understanding the changing landscape of South Asian intimacies, desires and sexualities. It firmly contextualizes gender and sexuality within the larger framework of human rights conversations,"
says Myna Mukherjee, festival director. "We hope that the festival creates a space like its New York audience: diverse, openminded, curious, keen for all kinds of experience; a knowledgeable audience, with whom filmmakers, actors and producers can develop a real dialogue."
Ghazal evening at Indian Consulate India Post News Service
NEW YORK: The Consulate General of India, New York, in association with the Helena Kaushik Education Foundation hosted a "Shaam-e-Ghazal", (an evening of Ghazals), on July 24. The Rizvi Parivar comprising Raj Kumar Rizvi, his wife Indrani Rizvi, and daughters Runa and Neha Rizvi, regaled the audience with ghazals and songs of different genres of classical music by such legendary poets and singers as Amir Khusro, Faiz Ahmad Faiz, Mirza Ghalib, Mehdi Hasan, Farida Khanum, among others. The Rizvi Parivar was supported by Pandit Ramesh Mishra on the sarangi, Samir Chatterji on tabla and Basheer Ahmed on the banjo. Around a hundred and seventy people from the Tri-State area, attended the event. Consul General Amb. Prabhu Dayal earlier welcomed the gathering to the event, the seventh in the ongoing "Jewels of India"
Concert Series. A number of distinguished invitees including Amb. T. P. Sreenivasan, Amb. Hardip Singh Puri, Amb. Neelam Deo, Amb. Gurjit Singh, Amitabh Kant IAS officer, New York Assembly Woman Sandy Gaeler, presented bouquets to the artistes.
The Rizvi Parivar was supported by Pandit Ramesh Mishra on the sarangi, Samir Chatterji on tabla and Basheer Ahmed on the banjo In his remarks, Prof Surendra Kaushik spoke about the work done by the Helena Kaushik Education Foundation in the field of Women's education in Rajasthan. He elaborated upon the many achievements of Helena Kaushik Women's College, run by the Foundation at Jhunjhunu in Rajasthan.
Travel Brief India to issue long term visa to boost tourism NEW DELHI: With a view to boosting foreign tourists' arrival in the country, government has decided to grant long term tourist visa to the nationals of 18 countries. The Home Ministry has decided to grant long term tourist visa of five years duration with multi-entry facility, carrying a stipulation of 90 days on each visit to the nationals of 18 countries, Minister of State for Tourism Sultan Ahmed said in the Lok Sabha. The 18 countries are France, Germany, Luxembourg, Nether-
Tourism Ministry has also submitted a note for consideration of the committee of secretaries in respect of the Visa-on-arrival and long term visa schemes lands, Belgium, Finland, Spain, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico and Vietnam. While tabling a report of the Standing Committee on Transport, Tourism and Culture, Ahmed said the decision of the Home Ministry was in response to the Tourism Ministry's proposal of granting visa-on-arrival scheme for specified countries on an experimental basis. Tourism Ministry has also submitted a note for consideration of the committee of secretaries in respect of the Visa-on-arrival and long term visa schemes, he said. -PTI
31 India Post
estling amidst the folds of the verdant Pali Hills, is the idyllic retreat of Kodaikanal, popularly known as Kodai. Apart from being a much sought after tourist resort, Kodai is also famous for its educational institutions, which are globally renowned. The resort is virtually a heaven for trekkers and avid nature lovers. Amongst its other natural attractions is a star-shaped lake, set in a dreamy locale. The Boat Club offers umpteen pleasure and racing trips. The splendid Bryant Park, famous for its rare collection of flowers, graftings and hybrids, is the
venue of great horticultural shows, held every year in May. Another major attraction of this area is the country's only Solar Physical Laboratory, founded in 1898.
Murugan, which provides a panoramic view of the lofty hills that embrace Kodaikanal. Some of the popular picnic spots in the resort are the Green Valley View, Pillar Rocks, and Bear Shola Falls. Na-
Nature seems to have blessed Kodai in all her magnanimity, a fact evident from the immense profusion of exotic flora and fauna of the area The Coaker's Walk offers some fantastic views of the surrounding plains. Another superb vantage point is the Kurinji Andavar temple, dedicated to Lord
ture seems to have blessed Kodai in all her magnanimity, a fact evident from the immense profusion of exotic flora and fauna of the area. The amazing orchid collec-
August 7, 2009
tion at the Shenbaganur Museum has granted Kodai international fame. Kodai is also blessed with the rare bloom of the highly elusive Kurinji flower that makes a dramatic appearance, once in 12 years. The Kurinji last bloomed in 1992. The resort is also home to various species of birds, thus rendering it a bird - watcher's delight. Kodaikanal promises to be an ideal getaway for those craving for an invigorating yet soothing holiday, away from the madness of the city. Contâ€™d on page 34
Travel & Hospitality Post
August 7, 2009
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ANAHEIM: It really isn't Walt Disney's fault or the Disney Company that they created an amusement park (copied by countless other companies from Universal to Six Flags) that is so popular a patron can spend most of the day just standing in endless lines waiting for a few minutes' excitement. When Mr. Disney built Disneyland he had a vision of a park for families that children could enjoy that went beyond the mundane merrygo-round and small train rides that were only available to his daughters when he was bringing them up. At $69 dollars a ticket ($59 ages 3 to 9) to get in the park, one wonders what Walt would think of its current price tag. Still, last week when I took my wife and kids to visit, I was told that the day be-
great experience even if there are so many people you might only go on two rides in four hours. (That by the way was my daughter's timing during mid-day.)
Most popular rides have a Disney FastPass where you insert your ticket and it gives you a time to return to the ride with an express line and short wait. This is good, however, depending on the ride the return time could be in an hour or in three hours! fore Disneyland had to close admission to the park because they had reached capacity. With a tough economy it seems LA locals are staying local. So the question remains…if you visit Disneyland this summer with your kids how can you make it a
ticket and it gives you a time to return to the ride with an express line and short wait. This is good, however, depending on the ride the return time could be in an hour or in three hours! Now, you are allowed only one pass at a time or every two hours. Case One: If you get a FastPass at 11am for Space
Well there is hope. In fact, partly it's all in your attitude and with a little prep I still think it's a great place to visit. So here are a few tips. • Use the "FastPass." Most popular rides have a Disney FastPass where you insert your
Disneyland fast pass
Mountain, if the return time is at 4pm-5pm you can get another FastPass at any other attraction (except Space Mountain) after 1pm, or after 4pm for Space Mountain. Case Two: You receive a FastPass on Autopia at 1:30pm with a return time of 2:30pm-3:30pm. In this case you can get a FastPass for any other attraction at 2:30pm. Now, they will not let you use the FastPass BEFORE the start time. However, you do not have to use it in that hour window if you happen to get stuck some where else in the park. • Pick rides that are generally not as popular or overlooked. Some of those rides are the Disneyland Train that takes you all around the park, relaxing and unhurried, with all sorts of animatronics thrown in. Cont’d on page 34
Travel & Hospitality Post
August 7, 2009
Orissa plans inter-state cruise BERHAMPUR: Orissa is planning for its tourists the country's first inter-state cruise between Andhra Pradesh to Kolkata. "Talks are at an advanced stage as both Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal have shown interest for this mutually beneficial tourism project. We are trying to introduce the service before the end of this year," Orissa's tourism department director R N Nanda said. Under the project, tourists will travel by sea-route from Visakhapatnam to Kolkata with short stays at the famous tourist spots in Orissa. All facilities, including food would be provided. Andhra Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation at present operates a sea cruise of a shorter duration. The idea was proposed by Orissa Tourism Minister Debi
Prasad Mishra and discussed with his Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal counterparts. The project, according to
Orissa, which has several tourist spots along its coast line, would benefit by the project, the tourism officials said Nanda, will be implemented in the public-private partnership (ppp) mode where a private party would operate the cruise. "The proposal will take a concrete shape after
signing of the MoU.". Nanda said at least two steamers -- one from West Bengal and another from Andhra Pradesh -will be used and the expression of interest would be sought from the interested parties. Orissa, which has several tourist spots along its coast line, would be benefited by the project, the tourism officials said, adding the potential survey has already been conducted. The proposed cruise line will have stops at the famous beach resorts Gopalpur-on-sea, Puri, Dhamara in Orissa. "While we have the infrastructure to anchor the vessel at Gopalpur-on-Sea and Dhamara, we have to develop such facilities at Puri and some nearby towns," an officer of the tourism department said. -PTI
Tourists throng Shillong, Cherrapunjee SHILLONG: Shillong and Cherrapunjee, two of the most popular tourist destinations in north-east India, may have witnessed a gradual change in weather but it has not deterred tourists from enjoying the abodes of the clouds. States tourism department officials said tourists flow to Meghalaya has been increasing over the years. Till March this year, the state has recorded 1,29,694 tourists, both domestic and foreign, as compared to 1,21,596 in the corresponding months last year, they said.
While 4,00,287 domestic tourists visited the state in 2006,
Meghalaya has witnessed a 55 per cent deficit rainfall so far, perhaps the highest deficit in the last 30 years 4,57,685 in 2007 and 5,49,954 in 2008, the corresponding figures
for foreign tourists were 4,259, 5,267 and 4,919. The increase has been despite a fall in rainfall and rise in mercury level in the state. Meghalaya has witnessed a 55 per cent deficit rainfall so far, perhaps the highest in the last 30 years. Mercury in both the tourist destinations has also shot up by at least two degrees above normal and has been hovering around 27 degrees for more than a fortnight now. Cherrapunjee has recorded just 3015 mm of rainfall this monsoon, marking a shortfall of 1868 mm. According to Sub Divisional Officer of Cherrapunjee B D Tiwari "It's much hotter in the rest of the country. -PTI
Travel & Hospitality Post
August 7, 2009
Disneyland is fun but what about those crowds
Kodaikanal: Heaven for trekkers & nature lovers Cont’d from page 31
Cont’d from page 32
My kids really love the Disneyland train and it isn't much of a wait. Another quick line is the Jungle Cruise in Adventureland, still one of the best classic rides in the park. • Come in the afternoon and evening times to get more rides and more variety. The Fantasmic Fire Show in New Orleans Square has people lining up several hours before the event for seats. This is usually around dinner time and many rides lose their heavy lines so this is a good time to take advantage. The Haunted House and Pirates of the Caribbean lines dropped to 20 minute waits six and seven o'clock from over an hour wait earlier in the day. Also evening is much cooler than the hot afternoon during the summer in Anaheim. • Grin and bear it if it's really a popular ride. We didn't see Splash Mountain or the Indiana Jones ride ever reduce its wait…nearly two hours for both! You decide if it's worth it. • Enjoy the restaurants at off meal times for fewer crowds.
Family in Disneyland
• Check out Tom Sawyer Island for a nice walk in the park. A lovely tree lined space, water, ducks, tunnels and bridges. Kids need to explore, not just stand in lines. • Toon Town is fun, but be selective of your waits and rides for the little ones when you can. Remember it closes earlier than the rest of the park. • Catch one of the Disneyland shows for a nice experience. Disneyland like most theme parks puts on some very professional variety shows for kids that feature
characters like Aladdin and Jasmine (in Adventureland) or a great Wild West show in Frontierland. • The Enchanted Tikki Room is usually only a half hour wait to the next show and the kids still love it. My best advice: enjoy Disneyland for what it is…a man's vision of family fun. Be flexible; remember the time you spend there will never come again. So catch some shows, and take some great pictures. And notice the beautiful trees and birds among the many people.
There are several excursion spots in and around Kodaikanal. Dolphin's Nose: located about eight km from the lake, is a flat projecting rock from where one can have a breathtaking view of the yawning chasm below. The Perumal Peak: about 11 km from Kodaikanal, is a trekker's delight. Climbers begin their ascent from the Neutral Saddle. Berijam Lake: supplies drinking water to Periyakulam town, and is 21 km from Kodaikanal (beyond the Pillar Rocks). It is a popular picnic spot with a beautiful view. Kukal Cave: 40 km from Kodaikanal, is a favorite camping site for trekkers. Reportedly, de-
scendants of the Paliyans still live here. How to reach: Air: The nearest airport is Madurai, 120 km away. It is well connected to other airports. Train: The nearest railway station is Kodai Railway Station, which is 80 km away. Road: Kodaikanal is connected
by road with important towns. Regular bus services are available from Madurai, Palani, Kodaikanal Road, Theni, Dindigul, Tiruchirapalli, Kumuli (Thekkady) and Coimbatore.
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Tech News IOL eyeing Gulf Keystone acquisition LONDON: Indian Oil Corporation and Oil India joint venture is eyeing acquisition of London Stock Exchange-listed Gulf Keystone Petroleum Ltd for USD 2.23 billion. Gulf Keystone Petroleum Ltd has operations in Kurdistan, Iraq and Algeria. IOC-OIL joint venture has been in talks with the promoters, including two groups based out of Kuwait, investment banking sources here said. The two have put a value of USD 2.23 billion for acquiring the company but the promoters are asking for substantially higher price, they said. -PTI
India plans 15,000 km roads with Rs 1 lakh cr investment NEW DELHI: Contracts for 15,000 km of roads with investment of Rs one lakh crore will be awarded this fiscal, as the Road Transport Ministry and the Planning Commission are working to resolve differences, Road Transport Minister Kamal Nath said here. "This year we will award 15,000 km of road with a value of Rs one lakh crore... Next year we will award another 15,000 km of road contracts," Nath said in reply to a discussion on the working of his ministry in the Rajya Sabha. He said awarding such huge contract was required to meet the target of 7,000 km of road construction in a year which would mean 20 km a day. -PTI
Kingfisher to raise Rs 500 cr through rights issue MUMBAI: Vijay Mallya-led Kingfisher Airlines plans to raise up to Rs 500 crore through a rights issue or a follow-on public offering or a placement of depository receipts. The air-carrier's Board has also decided to appoint merchant bankers with a view to raise this amount, a press release said. Kingfisher Airlines has clocked a revenue of Rs 1,314 crore in Q1 FY 10, down six per cent over the previous corresponding quarter. Despite the sharp cut in capacity, the airline has managed higher yields, the release said. At the EBITDA level for the quarter, domestic operations earned an operating profit of Rs 18 crore as compared to a loss of Rs 574 crore in Q1 FY'09. -PTI
TechBiz 37 India Post
August 7, 2009
Amity ties up with UK varsity NEW DELHI: Privately-run Amity Business School has tied up with the UK's Anglia Ruskin University for providing graduate and postgraduate degrees in management studies and has opened an international campus each in London and Singapore. Amity has tied up with UK-based Anglia Ruskin University for awarding degrees to students in Masters of Business Administration (MBA), Masters in Science (Management) and BA (Hons) Business Management, it said in a statement. As part of the course, candidates would be getting a two-year work visa after completing a one-year MBA course, besides multiple options of doing part-time and full-time studies in London, Singapore and India. -PTI
Yahoo & Microsoft join hands to challenge Google NEW YORK: After long-drawn speculations, Yahoo! and Microsoft have come together to forge a formidable alliance in Internet search and advertising space that will challenge the dominance of market leader Google. The ten-year agreement would see both the companies coming together in the search arena and sales activities related to search advertising. "In simple terms, Microsoft will now power Yahoo! search while Yahoo! will become the exclusive worldwide relationship sales force for both companies' premium search advertisers," the two firms said in a statement. As part of the deal, Microsoft would acquire an exclusive tenyear license to Yahoo!'s core search technologies. This would also allow the software giant to integrate Yahoo!'s search technologies into its existing platforms including Bing, Microsoft's newly launched search engine. Yahoo! would be compensated by Microsoft through a revenue sharing agreement on traffic generated
Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer
Yahoo! Chief Executive Officer Carol Bartz
on Yahoo!'s network of both owned and operated and affiliate sites. "Microsoft will pay traffic acquisition costs (TAC) to Yahoo!
first five years of the agreement," the statement noted. Google has more than 60 per cent share in the search market. .
‘This agreement comes with boatloads of value for Yahoo!, our users, and the industry, and I believe it establishes the foundation for a new era of internet innovation and development’ at an initial rate of 88 percent of search revenue generated on Yahoo!'s O&O sites during the
Since early 2008, Microsoft had been pursuing an alliance with Yahoo! and even came up with
over USD 44 billion takeover plan, which did not materialize. "This agreement comes with boatloads of value for Yahoo!, our users, and the industry, and I believe it establishes the foundation for a new era of internet innovation and development. "... this deal will help us increase our investments in priority areas in winning audience properties, display advertising capabilities and mobile experiences," Yahoo! Chief Executive Officer Carol Bartz said. Moreover, the partnership would boost the prospects of Bing. Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer said the agreement would provide Microsoft's search engine, Bing, the scale necessary to more effectively compete, attracting more users and advertisers. Asserting that the partnership would provide a "viable alternative to advertisers," the statement said they would no longer have to rely on one company that dominates more than 70 per cent of all search. Cont’d on page 38
JCPenney opens first-ever store in Manhattan India Post News Service
PLANO, Texas: JCPenney Company, Inc., the legendary American retailer with a 107-year history and more than 1,100 stores from coast to coast, has never had a store on the island of Manhattan. That changed on July 31 with the Company celebrating the grand opening of a brand-new JCPenney department store at 33rd Street and 6th Avenue in the heart of New York City, America's fashion capital. JCPenney's 153,000-squarefoot store is a unique showcase for great style, quality and affordable prices in one of the busiest shopping districts in America. From its location near Herald Square, the new JCPenney store will serve an enormous customer base that includes local residents, commuters, business travelers and tourists and will build on the strength of its other highly suc-
cessful New York City stores in Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island. Although JCPenney maintained its corporate office in Manhattan from 1914 to 1988, the store is a first. "It took more than a hundred years for JCPenney to get to Man-
hattan shoppers the style they want at affordable prices." The two-level store in the freshly renovated Manhattan Mall is accessible from street level as well as directly from two of Manhattan's busiest public transportation terminals -- the 34th
JCPenney's 153,000-square-foot store is a unique showcase for great style, quality and affordable prices in one of the busiest shopping districts in America hattan, and now more than ever, the time is right," said Myron E. (Mike) Ullman, III, chairman and chief executive officer. "Our Company today has the financial strength to create a unique and inviting store in the heart of New York City, and with our assortment of great brands, we will offer Man-
Street-Herald Square subway station and the 33rd Street PATH train station. More than 250,000 people pass through these terminals daily. The store is also one block from Penn Station and close to both the business district of midtown Manhattan and the tourist center of Times Square.
With approximately 500 Associates, the Manhattan store team is one of the largest of any JCPenney store. Chosen from more than 15,000 applicants, the store team is being trained in JCPenney's CustomerFIRST standards, which empower Associates to make customers their No. 1 priority and provide an easy, exciting and engaging shopping experience. The CustomerFIRST initiative helped JCPenney rank first among department store retailers and seventh overall in the NRF Foundation/American Express 2008 Customer Service Survey, which polled more than 8,000 consumers on their attitudes toward retailers' customer service. Made for Manhattan Inside the mall, a three-story, lighted JCPenney sign hangs above the escalators leading down to the store. Cont’d on page 38
August 7, 2009
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CII co-sponsoring GOPIO business meet
India Post News Service
NEW YORK: The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) is cosponsoring the NRI/PIO Economic and Business Conference organized by The Global Organization of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) on August 21 in New York City. GOPIO is celebrating its 20th Anniversary with a Convention from August 20 to 23 in the city.
Vayalar Ravi, Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs will be the Chief Guest at the program which starts on Thursday, August 20 at 5 p.m. with reports from NRI/PIO communities from different parts of the world followed by a Welcome Reception/Dinner at 7 p.m. and an Interactive Session with MOIA Secretary K. Mohandas. Political leaders from the US will join at different events
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BANGALORE: To foster trade between India and the US, the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce, the only bilateral chamber for Indo-US business, is organizing SUITE- 2009 (Summit for USIndian Trade & Economics) on September 10 and 11 in New York. The objective of SUITE-2009 is to explore and leverage potential synergies with the US as a strategic business partner, IACC Secretary General R K Chopra told reporters here today. India would be represented by a delegation from various industries where key policy decision makers, federal and state government ministers, consultants, lawyers, business owners and technocrats of both the countries are expected to participate, he said. Six companies from India includ-
ing Cisco, Wipro and Quest have confirmed their participation for SUITE 2009, Vice- Chairman IACC (Karnataka) Raj Rajkumar said. The event would focus on IT,
The objective of SUITE2009 is to explore and leverage potential synergies with the US as a strategic business partner ITES, education, food processing, power, energy, healthcare (wellness tourism) and infrastructure sectors Chopra said. It would also help Indian companies who wish to go to US for acquisition purposes, he added. -PTI
during the Convention. On Friday August 21 a daylong business conference with the theme India and Indian Diaspora in the Context of Global Economic Challenges will be held. This conference will cater to all segments of the NRI/PIO communities from all over the world and business people from India. It will provide great opportunity to network with people from all over the world.
India's external debt at $229.9 billion MUMBAI: India's external debt went up by USD 5.3 billion or 2.4 per cent to USD 229.9 billion as of March 2009, the Reserve Bank said in the first quarter review. The debt denominated in US dollar accounted for 57 per cent of total external debt. The country's foreign exchange reserves provided a cover of 109.6 per cent to the external debt. However, the foreign exchange cover was higher at 137.9 per cent as of March 2008. The decline in forex cover to external debt was due to decline in forex reserves. The bank has factored in debts from different sources like IMF, External Commercial Borrowing, NRI deposits, Trade credit, Bilateral and Multilateral credit. Cont’d on page 39
JCPenney opens first-ever store in Manhattan Contíd from page 37
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Customers entering from the PATH and subway stations will pass through 22-foot-long portals tiled and painted in JCPenney's signature red. Inside, the store's layout and many of its features and amenities have been tailored to fit the unique location and needs of time-pressured, commuting customers.
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mated wait times. In addition, every store register provides a gateway to jcp.com and its extended selection of merchandise, some of which may not be widely available in stores due to space constraints or time of year - including extended sizes and colors, specialized offerings such as children's furniture or outdoor furniture, as well as options for home or store delivery.
Yahoo & Microsoft join hands to challenge Google Cont’d from page 37
99 Alamaden Blvd., Ste. 101 San Jose, CA 95113 (408) 947-3312 (800) 947-3312 Hari.Kohli@rbc.com
More than 1,000 new merchandise display fixtures have been created or modified for the store, resulting in a modern, intimate and accessible shopping environment that's easy to navigate. For convenience and speedy checkout, the store features nearly 100 registers and an electronic queuing system that directs customers to available registers and informs customers of their esti-
"With the addition of Yahoo!'s search volume, Microsoft will achieve the size and scale required to unleash competition and innovation in the market, for consumers as well as advertisers," it added. . Once the agreement is fully
implemented, Yahoo! expects that it would provide a benefit to annual GAAP operating income of about USD 500 million and capital expenditure savings of about USD 200 million. Yahoo! anticipates that the pact would also result in a benefit to annual operating cash flow of
nearly USD 275 million. "This deal fits the long-term strategic direction of Yahoo! to remain the world's leading online media company and Carol Bartz has the full and unanimous support of the Yahoo! Board behind this deal," said Yahoo! Chairman Roy Bostock said.
August 7, 2009
TechBiz Post www.indiapost.com
Airtel sponsor for Champions League Twenty20 NEW DELHI: Asia's leading integrated telecom services provider, Airtel, has signed a five-year deal with ESPN Star Sports to become title sponsors of Champions League Twenty20. Under the deal, which the industry sources said is in the range (rpt range) of Rs 170 crore, Airtel will have rights on ground title sponsorship for a period of five years starting this year. Officials of both Airtel and ESPN STAR Sports, commercial partners of Champions League T20, however, refused to divulge the exact amount of the deal. A total 12 teams from seven Test playing nations will participate in the inaugural edition, which will be played across three venues in India - Bangalore, New Delhi and Hyderabad -- from October 8. The 16-day tournament, which will now be called Airtel Champions League Twenty20, will have 23 matches. Commenting on the deal, Shireesh Joshi, Marketing Director Bharti Airtel said, "We are delighted to announce our partnership
with ESPN on the title sponsorship of Champions League Twenty20 cricket tournament. We have seen a great synergy between our brand and cricket, since both cater and con-
A total 12 teams from seven Test playing nations will participate in the inaugural edition, which will be played across three venues in India - Bangalore, New Delhi and Hyderabad -- from October 8 nect to a wide spectrum of consumer segments. "This synergy combined with the success of the Twenty20 format and the growing popularity of club cricket in India makes this a great opportunity for us to partner.-PTI
India's external debt at $229.9 billion Contâ€™d from page 38
The Reserve Bank said the debt service ratio was comfortable at 4.6 per cent as of March 09.
The total short- term debt obligations accounted for 40.6 per cent of the total external debt. The total debt to GDP ratio stood at 22 per cent as of March 09 against 19 per cent the year before. -PTI
August 7, 2009
NEW YORK Upcoming
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• Inner Engineering
• Gita Overview
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Thurs Aug 6 • Desi Bridal Expo
Thurs Aug 13
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Sat Aug 8 • Bollywood Divas Nite
Fri Aug 14
Venue: Colden Center, 65-30 Kissena Blvd, Flushing, New York Time: 8pm Contact: (718)200-9311 Highlights: Rakhi Sawant, Koena Mitra, Tanushree Dutta and Preeti Jhangiani
• Jisne Lahore Nahin Dekha - Play Venue: Terrace Theater, 2700 F Street, Washington DC Contact: 240-354-1127 Time: 7:30pm Highlights: Jisne Lahore Nahin Dekha" is a highly acclaimed Hindi drama set in 1947 during the time of partition. The story depicts the strength of human relationships in an atmosphere charged with communal hatred, intolerance, and vendetta.
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Thurs Aug 6 • Full Moon Meditation Venue: Trinity Lutheran Church, 131 Mountain Way, Morris Plains, New Jersey Time: 7pm Contact: 305-297-8367
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Venue: The Long Beach Hilton, LA Contact: 310-994-9500 & 562-965-8218 Highlights: Red Carpet Gala with Bollywood Actor with Bollywood Actor Vinod Khanna, Cheetah Girls singer Kiely Williams, Actress/Model Lisa Ray, Punjabi Actress Kimi Verma, Actress Mallika Sherawat, Producer/ Director Harry Baweja, and by dinner, show and dance party. Fashion Show by famous indian designers Pria Kataaria Puri and Rohini Bedi.
Venue: the Long Beach Hilton, LA Time: 11am to 5pm Contact: 310-994-9500 Highlights: Famous Designer from Mumbai Pria Kataaria Puri and the talented Indian Designer Rohini Bedi.
Tues Sept 22 to Thurs Sept 24
• Avaniee's Jewelry Show
• Quality Midwest Conference
Venue: Holiday Inn, 2175 West Marlton Pike, Cherry Hill, New Jersey Time: 11am Contact: 516-279-6350
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Sat Aug 8 • Pull a Plane for Special Olympics Venue: 6730 East Carson Street, Long Beach, CA 90808 Time: 10am Contact: 562-221-3787
Sat Aug 15 • 10th Annual India Independence Day Venue: Pierce College, Woodland Hills, CA Contact: 818 458-5595 Highlights: Over 80 booths offering variety of Indian foods, merchandise and informational services.
Sun Aug 16
HINDU TEMPLE & CULTURAL CENTER (510) 659-0655
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• Ashtottarsat Shreemad Bhagwat Katha Venue: Artesia High School, 12108 E. Del Amo Blvd., Lakewood, CA Time: Sunday Aug 16- 2pm to 3:30pm Pothi Yatra Pooja, 4pm Katha Starts, 7pm Aarati & Maha Prasad, Mon Aug 17- 3pm to 5pm Shiv Maha Puja, 5pm Katha Starts, 8pm Aarati & Maha Prasad, Tues Aug 18- 5pm to 6pm Maha Prasad, 6pm Katha Starts, 8:30pm Aarati, Sat Aug 221pm to 3pm Cultural Programs, 3pm 108 Thakorji's Puja Archan by Tulsiji followed by Purnahuti, 7pm Maha Prasad, Sat Aug 22- 8:30pm to 12:30pm Health Fair Contact: 714-484-0404
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UPCOMING TEMPLE EVENTS YOGA CLASS: MON.-FRI. 7 TO 8 AM SAT. 8 TO 9 AM GEETA CLASS: SAT. 11:00 AM TO 1:00 PM Gayatri Mantra Saturday - 11 AM - To 12 PM by Gayatri Pariwar Contact: Naresh Sethi (For Jagrata). TEL: 510-825-1927, 510-487-2544
Sundar Kand Ka Paath on 3rd Saturday of everymonth from 10:30 am to 12: 00 pm
RAMESH IYER MANOJ PANDA
ABHISHEKA: MON: 6:30 PM SHIVJI, FRI: 6:30 PM LAKSHAMIJI, SAT: 10 AM BALAJI, SUN: 6:30 PM GANESHJI & NAVAGRAHA
• 4th Annual India's 62nd Independence Day and Kick-off for Sidhu For OC Supervisor 2010 Venue: The Sidhu Family Residence, Elegant Old Yorba Estate, 145 S. Vista Grande, Anaheim, CA Time: 6:30pm to 8:30 Contact: (714) 920-4151 Highlights: Featuring special elected official guests, fun, Entertainment & taste of Indian cuisine
PHILADELPHIA Upcoming Sat Aug 15
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Fri Aug 7 • Miss India America 2009
Ek Shaam Rafi Ke Naam Venue: MilpitasCommunity Center, 457 East Calavers Blvd, Milpitas, California Contact: 425-985-5294
SatAug 22 UFICA Announce: Independence Day Celebration Venue: 15711 PIoneer Blvd, Norwalk California 90650 Time: 5pm to 10:30pm Contact: 562-544-6001 Highlights: Star Attraction Grand Marshal Manisha Koirala
VIRGINIA Upcoming Wed Aug 5 • Balaram Jayanti Venue: Hare Krishna Temple, 10310 Oaklyn Drive, Potomac, Maryland Time: 6:30pm to 9pm Contact: 301-299-2100 Highlights: Program includes completely ecstatic kirtans/ bhajans, abhishek, prasadam feast, discourse by HH Romapada Swami.
Fri Aug 7 • Discourses on Essence of Vedic Knowledge Venue: Durga Temple, 8400 Durga Pl, Fairfax Station, Virginia, CA Contact: (703) 690-9355 Highlights: Didi Ji will talk on the concept of reincarnation, how to meditate with devotion and Raas Leela from the Bhagvatam.
Sun Aug 9 • Indian Cultural Heritage Night Venue: Ossian Park Hall, 7900 Heritage Drive, Annandale, Virginia, CA Time: 7:30pm Contact: (703) 642-9558
Sat Aug 15 • Cultural and Religious Program
Sun Aug 16 DATE
Venue: Ohlone College, 43600 Mission Blvd. in Fremont, Contact: www.ohloneforkids.com
Fri Aug 7
ï 18th Annual Miss India America 2009 pageant
• One Day Exhibit
Fri July 31
• Ohlone for Kids (and Teens) Summer Enrichment Program
Fri Aug 7
Venue: TAMIL UCC, 1840, Westchester Blvd, Westchester, IL Time: 6:30pm to 8:30pm Contact: 630-414-0656
Venue: Gayatri Gyan Mandir, Itasca, Illinois Time: 8pm Contact: 630-250-8400
Mon June 29 to Mon Aug 6
Venue: Hilton Hotel, 701 W Ocean Blvd, Long Beach, CA Time: 5pm Highlights: Cheetah Girls Singer KIELY WILLIAMS, Bollywood Actress MALLIKA SHERAWAT, Battlestar Galactica REKHA SHARMA and many other confirmed celebrities.
Sat Aug 8
NORTHERN CALIFORNIA Upcoming
Venue: Sindhu Center, South California Time: 2pm to 4pm Contact: 818-541-1754 & 909-576-1114 Highlights: Children between the ages of 5 and 18. Children will be taught the Fundamentals of Hinduism, Prayers, Shlokas, Bhajans and Values of our culture.
• Vacation Bible School
Fri Aug 14
Venue: Bharat Sevashram Sangha, 3490 Rt. 27, Kendall Park, New Jersey Time: 6pm to 9:30pm Contact: 732-422-8880
Venue: 2335 S. Diamond Bar Boulevard, DBC Center, Diamond Bar, CA Time: 6:30pm Contact: 909-519-1579, 626-810-2345
Wed Aug 5 to Sat Aug 8
Thurs Aug 13 • Shri Krishna Janmashtami
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA Upcoming
• Festival Of India Venue: Great Plaza, Penn's Landing Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Time: 1pm Contact: (215-579-6336)
Sat Aug 22 • Sri Sankaran Namboothiri Carnatic Vocal Concert Venue: Chinmaya Vrindavan, 95 Cranbury Neck Road, Cranbury Time: 6:30pm to 9pm Contact: 732-792-9715
Venue: Sri Venkateshwara Lotus Temple, 12501 Braddock Road, Fairfax, Virginia Time: 11am to 6pm Contact: 703-815-4850
HOUSTON Upcoming Fri Aug 14 • Memories of Ghantasala Venue: Maharaja Restaurant, 9593 Country Creek Dr, Houston, Texas Contact: 281-480-1209
Sat Aug 15 • India Fest 2009 Venue: George Brown Convention Center, 1001 Avenida de Las Americas, Houston Time: 11am to 10pm Contact: 713-542-2779
Sun Aug 16 • Krishna Janmashtami Venue: Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, 1150 Brand Lane, Stafford, Texas Contact: (281) 765-2277
Tues Aug 18
Sat Sept 5
• Art of Living Course
• Indo American Fair 2009
Venue: All Faiths Chapel, 4110 Guadalupe St, Austin, Texas Contact: 512-786-6871 Ticket: $350, $250, $100
Venue: Mercer County Park, West Windsor, New Jersey Time: 11am to 7pm Contact: 609-275-1334
FDI funds change in interpretation to help developers NEW DELHI: Hectic lobbying is underway to bring about a small change in the way one interprets a rule on foreign investment in property -a change that could backfire on overseas investors but rescue several Indian realtors. It will not require a cabinet decision or a new press note issuance by the government. All it will call for is a simple clarification- one that could make or break many players in the local property market that has attracted close to $20 billion in the past five years. According to the foreign direct investment [FDI] regulations, a foreign investor has to bring in a minimum $5 million to participate in a joint venture (JV) with an Indian developer while the rest of the money can be brought in at a later point, may be in tranches. Interestingly, the March 2005 press note 2, which spells out FDI rules, says: Original investment can not be repatriated before a period of three years from completion of minimum capitalization."
UB City bags Asia Pacific Property Awards
BANGALORE: Bangalore's UB City, a joint development venture between the UB Group and Prestige Group, has bagged an award in the best 'mixed-use' development category at the Asia Pacific Property Awards. The event was part of the International Property Awards, a global competition dedicated to finding the best real estate professionals across the globe, a release said. Bangalore's UB City is built in one million square feet and is the biggest 'mixed-use' development in the city's Central Business District. The complex features a mix of commercial offices, a high-end luxury retail shopping space, a piazza comprising a melange of restaurants and serviced residences. -PTI
JSW scouting for partner to fund cement operations
NEW DELHI: The Sajjan Jindal group is seeking to cut its exposure to the cement business through a stake sale in its cementmaking subsidiary. The group's cement firm JSW Cement Ltd is a fully-owned subsidiary of the holding company Jindal South West Holdings Ltd, or JSW Holdings Ltd, and has plans to set up 30 million tones (mt) of cement capacity at an initial cost of Rs 3,000-crore.
Real Estate 41 India Post
August 7, 2009
HDFC to raise funds through QIP NEW DELHI: HDFC plans to raise up to Rs 4,000crore this fiscal through a qualified institutional placement (QIP) offering. "HDFC is in the process of undertaking a qualified institutional placement (QIP) offering of warrants simultaneously with secured redeemable non-convertible debentures to qualified institutional buyers", HDFC chairman Deepak Parekh said. The secured redeemable non-convertible debentures will not exceed Rs 4,000-crore, Parekh told shareholders at the company's AGM. The company is expecting the FIPB approval for the QIP in two-three weeks.
Great time for first-time homebuyers TAMARA E. HOLMES
he real estate meltdown and credit crisis have slammed a huge segment of society, but first-time homebuyers could be in the best position to take the leap into homeownership. A few years ago, information inundated potential first-timers about how to take the leap via firsttime homebuyer programs and other avenues that would make down payments affordable and escalating home prices feasible. In today's turbulent real-estate environment, renters might think the days of first-time home-buying assistance are over. But that couldn't be further from the truth, experts say. "The programs for first-time homebuyers that were always tried and true are still there," says Robert Baker, education manager for Housing and Credit Counseling Inc. in Topeka, Kan. Combine that availability with low interest rates and low home prices, and you have one of the best times in recent history for first-time buyers to take advantage of these programs. "This is the best time I have seen in my entire career for someone to buy a home." "I've been in this business for 28 years and I've seen situations where the interest rates were high
and the price of housing was low, and I've seen it in reverse," says Marc Savitt, president of the National Association of Mortgage Brokers. "But this is the first time I can remember both the price of housing and the interest rates extremely low and extremely affordable. This is the best time I have seen in my entire career for someone to buy a home." Federal aid Not only are market conditions favorable, the government is adding incentives to attract first-time homebuyers. As part of the economic stimulus package, a tax
‘This is the first time I can remember both the price of housing and the interest rates extremely low and extremely affordable. This is the best time I have seen in my entire career for someone to buy a home’ credit worth 10 percent of the purchase price up to $8,000 is available to first-time homebuyers as long as they sign on the dotted line this year. Unlike previous tax credits for first-time buyers, this one does not require repayment. Homebuyers must meet income requirements to be eligible for the entire credit. If you're single, you must earn $75,000 or less. Married
Real estate players cheer incentives on home loans NEW DELHI: The real estate players have expressed happiness on the Finance Minister's proposal to provide incentives on home loans and said the move will help in boosting demand of the slowdown-hit sector. "It's a very good step for the affordable housing segment. In fact, it is a big stimulus to the sector that will absolutely revive the demand in real estate," Parsvnath Developers Chairman Pradeep Jain told PTI. The extension of tax holiday on affordable housing projects completing before March, 2012, was also a much-needed step to provide a helping hand to the developers, he added. Expressing similar views, Omaxe
couples must earn less than $150,000, though those who earn more can qualify for reduced credits. In addition to the one-time credit, first-time homebuyers can take advantage of special programs through the Federal Housing Administration, or FHA. The FHA doesn't make mortgage loans directly, but it insures loans made by private lenders, protecting those lenders from losses. FHA-backed loans tend to have less stringent credit requirements, and they let homebuyers use financial gifts from family members,
Chairman and Managing Director Rohtas Goel said, "The decisions are good for both developers as well as end-users." The country's largest real estate consultant Jones Lang LaSalle Meghraj Chairman and Country Head Anuj Puri said the moves would increase demand only in the low-cost and mid- income affordable housing segment. "This is only one of the measures. Government needs to take many more such measures to revive the entire real estate sector," he added. However, another leading consultant Cushman & Wakefield (C&W) said the Finance Minister's move would have "very little" impact on the realty sector. -PTI
nonprofit organizations and employers to pay the entire down payment. However, the onset of the economic downturn has brought a change in these programs. "We've raised our required down payment from 3 percent to 3.5 percent," says Lemar C. Wooley, a spokesman for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. "But that is still substantially lower than the 20 percent you'd have to pay for a conventional loan, if you can get it at all." Changing qualifications Many first-time homebuyer programs now require higher credit scores to qualify, says Baker. Although buyers could qualify for an FHA loan with a credit score
below 700, they might have to make a higher down payment. Some of the programs instituted by private lenders not affiliated with FHA generally require credit scores above 700, Baker says. Many programs also contain an education component, so prospective buyers will get help with budgeting, as well as advice on clearing up any debt or credit problems. So even if they don't have the required credit score, a housing or credit counseling agency can help them improve their financial situation as they look for firsttime home buying programs that they will qualify for. Another requirement of many first-time homebuyer programs is that participants must have income below 80 percent of the region's median income. But if your salary was lowered or your bonuses stopped, you might be earning less than 80 percent of the median income now. So even if you didn't qualify before, you might now. However, as median income levels drop, so does the amount that represents 80 percent. "You may have been somebody that was above the 80 percent median income level five or 10 years ago but now based on family size and median income in your area, you're now below 80 percent and you can take advantage of this," says Baker. 'First time' or first time? Another thing to remember: Don't always take the term "first time" literally. Many programs don't rule you out if you bought a home before. "If you haven't owned a home for three years or more, you are eligible for many of these loans," says Savitt.
42 India Post
August 7, 2009
August 7, 2009
ARIES Mar 21-Apr 20 Negotiations will continue move in right direction and soon you will have the chance to express what you have in your mind. You may be in market to replace an old vehicle. You will increase your efforts to get out of stagnant situation and will succeed up to certain extent. Take some time out and pamper yourself with the activities you like most.
LEO Jul 23-Aug 22 You may feel tired of working too hard and fewer results. Soon things will turn around. Boss will not give much time and many choices. Do not hesitate to pick up the phone and call a trustworthy friend for advice. A child will be getting ready to move away for educational purpose. Offer a helping hand but do not allow others to take advantage.
August 7 to August 13
Nov 23-Dec 22 You are just inches away from the deal so hanging in there and pray hard. Life will become more entertaining because of a new friend. You will take a short trip to a real nice place. Money will keep slipping out of your hands but you will have just enough to meet commitments. Some one in family may need little medical attention.
MAFS to hold 17th fund raising dinner USHA BODIWALA
CHICAGO: Metropolitan Asian Family Services (MAFS) is celebrating its 17th Annual fund raising dinner on Saturday, August 8 at India House Banquet Hall, in Schaumburg, a north side suburb of Chicago. The theme of the function is "Finding Solutions in Challenging Time". The other highlights include a short play, award distribution, music, fashion show, dance and dinner. Last year over thousand people attend the fund raising dinner and expectations are that the number would exceed this year. MAFS provides services to Chicago, Niles, Roselle, Lombard and Carol Stream centers. The MAFS has been actively providing multi-dimensional programs to South Asian and East European community for "Hot meal for seniors, Social & Outreach service (benefits available to the elderly), Health education, English classes, Computer training, Senior drop in center, Light and Heat Energy Assistance Program
(LIHEAP), Citizenship preparation, Immigration services, Youth, Home care and adult daycare program". Mrs. Santosh Kumar, the Executive Director of MAFS, said that her organization is faced with the dual challenges of expansion and mobilization of resources to meet the ever growing needs of disadvantaged elderly population. As the state has been going through severe economic crisis, there is a fiscal cut in the grant provided by the state. Earlier the MAFS was getting 70% grant from the State of Illinois and the County, as a result of which it had to spend only the 30% of the total expense which was bore by the generous donors. This year, the grant has been further reduced to 40% which means an additional burden of 30% and a total of 60%. Despite this hard situation, the MAFS is committed to its goal. (For details logon to: indiapost.com)
TAURUS Apr 21-May 20 Your efforts will pick up the speed and so will be the results causing lots of excitement in life. Expect few big changes in career this week. Property deal can also come through finally. It will be another great week for brokers. Be careful when it comes to matters of the heart as other side will be very demanding. Bank balance will grow.
VIRGO Aug 23-Sept 22 A close friend is likely to disappoint you. You have to stay in control or some one else will try to take credit for your hard work. You may need to answer some legal questions asked by a government official. Money wise you have a temporary relief on the way. Running around will increase and you may travel out of state.
CAPRICORN Dec 23-Jan 19 You may have to wait for little more time to get the reply. Do not give up hope and stay in touch with the other party. You may hear some encouraging news from overseas. There is a long distance trip in the air for some. You will change your strategy and start thing about long term. Some of you may enroll in a short term course also.
GEMINI May 21-Jun 20 You still have big change of hitting some kind of financial jackpot. Life will suddenly get very interesting with the comeback of an old friend. An unusual offer will caught you off guard. You may make up your mind to adopt legal way to prove your point. Money will come but no matter how hard you try it will be hard to hold and preserve.
LIBRA Sept 23-Oct 22 Alignment of favorable planets in good houses will continue to provide with necessary support. Most of your attempts will be successful and a major deal will be in the pocket. You may have to borrow some money temporarily. A big refund is also on its way to you. You will spend time with famous people and learn new tricks.
AQUARIUS Jan 20-Feb 18 You will continue to make progress in all career related matters. You can really accomplish anything you set your mind to right now. Spouse may complain of aches and pain in the body. Just keep away from a trouble maker at the party. An experienced and trusted person will help you see things clearly and plan well for future.
CANCER Jun 21-Jul 22 You will meet your recent financial commitments and start working on future. Aggressive approach will get few things done and you will have a big chance to learn from the best. There is still a big chance to make money from stocks and lottery. You will start working on a travel plans also. You will keep finding time to entertain your self.
SCORPIO Oct 23-Nov 22 You will develop and show lots of patience with people around. From money point of view, it looks promising. You may have to twist facts a little bit for big financial gains. You will get ready and look forward to a prestigious assignment that can take you to a different level in career. You may call some one for little advice.
PISCES Feb 19-Mar 20 You will be doing some work in or around the house. Concentrate when handling special tools. You will try to spend quality time with people you love the most. Negotiations will continue to march in correct direction but people on the other side will take more than usual time to reply. You may take a short trip to see a relative.
In Brief 3 suspected illegal immigrants freed after sweep PHOENIX: Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio says the federal government released three illegal immigrants arrested in a crime sweep because their arrests didn't fit new Department of Homeland Security policies. Because the three people had committed no other criminal or civil violations, the deputies were instructed by federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to let them go free. Arpaio says DHS breached a promise that he could operate under an existing agreement that allows him to enforce immigration law. -AP
Federal officials warn against immigration fraud FALLS CHURCH, Va.: US Department of Justice officials are warning those needing help with immigration cases to protect themselves from fraud. The department's Executive Office for Immigration Review says people should be cautious of those who pretend to be immigration attorneys or accredited representatives. The EOIR says visa consultants, immigration consultants and ``notarios'' can't represent anyone in immigration court, can't provide legal services and can't give legal advice. The office also advises: Don't sign applications or other papers that are blank or aren't understandable. -AP
BATON ROUGE, La.: The US Border Patrol has arrested an illegal immigrant from Iran who is wanted in Nevada. Authorities say Jimmy Nassrain was arrested at the Greyhound bus station in Baton Rouge, and is being held pending removal proceedings. -AP
Community fears expansion of 287(g) program will lead to racial profiling SRIREKHA N. CHAKRAVARTY India Post News Service
NEW YORK: The recent announcement by Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano to expand the disastrous 287(g) program of that allows immigration officials to enter into agreements with local law enforcement agencies to report on illegal immigrants, has come under fire from advocacy groups calling for immigration reform, as a blanket sanction for racial profiling and human rights abuse. The expansion of the 287(g) program has become a major cause of concern owing to the fact that Indian Americans are among fastest growing illegal immigrants in the United States, making them a plum target for actions under the program. Statistics released recently by the Department of Homeland Security show that at 180,000 to 200,000 as of 2008, Indian Americans rank the 10th fastest growing illegal immigrants in the country. Section 287(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) authorizes the Secretary of Homeland Security to enter into agreements with state and local law en-
ICE arrests 19 suspected gang members in Ill. CHICAGO: Federal immigration officials have arrested 19 immigrants who are suspected gang members in a two-day operation in the Chicago area. Immigration and Customs Enforcement says 18 of those arrested are illegal immigrants and nearly all are from Mexico. One is a permanent U.S. resident from Mexico. An ICE spokeswoman says the investigation ended earlier this week and arrests were made in areas including Chicago and suburban Bensenville. As part of the operation, authorities also seized marijuana plants that were growing at a suspected gang member's home. The suspected gang members' affiliations include the Latin Kings and Spanish Gangster Disciples.-AP
August 7, 2009
Man wanted in Nevada arrested
forcement agencies, permitting designated officers to perform immigration law enforcement functions, pursuant to a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), to identify, process, and when appropriate, detain immigration offenders they encounter during their regular, daily law-enforcement activity. Introduced under the Bush Administration, 287(g) was last month expanded by Secretary
New Jersey which has a large immigrant community. "Local enforcement of immigration laws is wrong and diverts resources that should be directed toward truly combating crime," he said. "It will sap these counties of their vitality and vibrancy if immigrants live in fear of the police." According to Mehta, police are not trained to distinguish between a legal and an undocumented im-
Indian Americans are among fastest growing illegal immigrants in the United States, making them a plum target for actions under the program Napolitano where 11 new localities adopted the law including two in New Jersey and one in Georgia - particularly areas with South Asian communities, which is being seen as a disturbing phenomenon by South Asian American legal, civil rights groups that have for long been advocating a comprehensive national immigration reform. Noted immigration attorney Cyrus Mehta said he was "truly surprised" that Section 287(g) was being implemented in more areas across the country, especially in
migrant. "Immigrants will lose trust in the police. Immigrants will also not respond to the 2010 Census," he said. There is palpable fear among the Indian American social advocacy groups that programs like 287(g) will prevent immigrants from seeking help from police for issues of domestic violence, hate crimes and so on. "We have been very concerned with the program particularly because of the potential for racial profiling and discrimination occurring in terms of how law enforce-
ment agencies may pick up individuals thinking that they may be undocumented immigrants, which in turn may trigger potential deportation proceedings," said Priya Murthy, Policy director, South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT). "Secondly we also think that the program very much undermines community safety. Many individuals are hesitant to call 911 or seek help because they are afraid there might be immigration consequences to it. That's really a huge concern for all immigrant communities, particularly the most vulnerable within them." The New York Daily News quoted Aarti Shahani, co-author of "Local Democracy on ICE," as saying that the 287(g) program "turns traffic cops into jail guards and deportation agents." According to Shahani, the program has been under intensive investigation for rampant mismanagement on the part of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and racial profiling on the part of lawmen. "The statute is being applied to corn vendors and people with broken taillights," the newspaper quoted Shahani. Contâ€™d on page 46
Visa madness in middle of summer CYRUS D. MEHTA
ince priority dates, caps, and the potential for more visa availability predominate conversations among those in the immigration attorney and immigrant communities, here is the latest round up. How we wish we did not have to scramble for more visas by dealing with priority dates and caps, and all this was just a midsummer night's dream. In Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream, Bottom, when he wakes up after his ass's head is removed, states, "I have had a dream, past the wit of man to say what dream it was." Let us hope that if and when Comprehensive Immigration Reform is enacted, we too can heave a sigh of relief like Bottom as if what we went through was an incomprehensible dream.
China, India EB-2 Priority Dates Progress in August; DOS Determines FY 2009 Limits The State Department's Visa Bulletin for August 2009 shows an October 1, 2003, cut-off date for both the China-mainland born and
pected to remain unavailable for the remainder of this fiscal year at least. The EB-3 category for India could remain unavailable indefinitely. This follows on the heels of news last month that the India and China EB-2 categories could become un-
Charles Oppenheim of the Department of State's Visa Office reportedly stated that without legislative relief, the waiting time for Indian EB-2 applicants may be measured in years, even decades India EB-2 categories, which is close to a four-year jump from last month's cut-off date. The third preference and "other workers" employmentbased categories are Unavailable; all other categories are Current. EB3 visa numbers worldwide and for India, China, and Mexico are ex-
available in August or September and remain unavailable indefinitely. The Department had explained that there is a backlog of at least 25,000 India EB-2 cases awaiting visa numbers. Charles Oppenheim of the Department of State's Visa Office reportedly stated that without leg-
islative relief, the waiting time for Indian EB-2 applicants may be measured in years, even decades. The Department also noted in the August Visa Bulletin that heavy applicant demand for numbers in the employment-based fourth preference is likely to require the establishment of a cutoff date, or the preference becoming "Unavailable," for September. The category can be expected to return to a "Current" status for October, the first month of the new fiscal year. Meanwhile, the Department of State has determined the family and employment preference numerical limits for FY 2009. The worldwide employment-based preference limit is 140,000. Contâ€™d on page 45
August 7, 2009
Australia to crack down on migration scams targeting Indians MELBOURNE: Australia has promised to crack down on migration scams targeting Indian students in the country with Foreign Minister Stephen Smith saying the government will tighten regulation on migration agents. Smith said the scams about ripping off foreign students would be looked into by immigration and education authorities and dealt with "no tolerance". Speaking from Singapore, Smith told ABC channel "Of course it's very concerning on both fronts." "On the migration front, when we were in Opposition we did express significant concerns about the regulation of migration agents, and as a
consequence we've recently seen a migration regulatory authority come into existence to regulate that industry better," Smith said.
The program said migration agents told the reporter she could buy a fake English language certificate "But any of these abuses, of course, we won't tolerate and don't tolerate. And the cracking down, so far as the migration agents' regulatory arrangements are concerned, will assist in that process," he said.
ABC's 'Four Corners' program reported that hundreds of private colleges in Australia were offering courses such as hairdressing and cooking, luring Indian students with false promises of permanent residency in the country. The program said migration agents told the reporter she could buy a fake English language certificate needed to gain residency for between USD 2,400-4,100. The expose were the latest to hit Australia's USD 14.2 billion international student sector -- the nation's third largest export earner -- after a series of violent attacks on Indian students in cities like Melbourne and Sydney. -PTI
Visa madness in middle of summer The per-country limit is fixed at 7 percent of the family and employment annual limits. For FY 2009, the per-country limit is 25,620. The dependent area annual limit is 2 percent, or 7,320. The August Visa Bulletin is available at http://travel.state.gov/ visa/frvi/bulletin/ bulletin_4539.html. H-1B Visa Cap While most thought that the H1B cap would get exhausted within a few days after April 1, H-1B visas are still surprisingly available. Interestingly, the H-1B cap count hovers around 45,000. As of July 10, 2009, approximately 44,900 H1B cap subject petitions have been received by the USCIS. Earlier, on July 3, approximately 45,800 H-1B cap subject petitions were received by the USCIS, and even earlier to that on June 26, approximately 44,800 cap subject petitions were received by the USCIS. Obviously, the economic downturn is the big reason for the fact that the H-1B cap has been plus or minus 45,000 for such a long time. But another important contributing factor may be because USCIS have become deviously strict in adjudicating H-1B petitions. If you are an IT consulting company filing an H-1B petition, the chances of being approved for an H-1B are slim if you cannot
clearly establish that the H-1B beneficiary will be working at a specific client company at the time of filing and that the employment will be completely controlled by the H1B employer. Recently, a FAQ issued by the Federal Reserve developed "in consultation with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services" indicates that an employer who has received funding under Section 13 of the Federal Reserve Act is no longer subject to the provi-
Obviously, the economic downturn is the big reason for the fact that the H-1B cap has been plus or minus 45,000 for such a long time sions of the Employ American Workers Act (EAWA) if it has repaid its obligation. Under EAWA, any company which has received either funding under Section 13 of the Federal Reserve Act or under the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) is considered to be an "H1B dependent employer" and is required to make additional onerous attestations to the US Department of Labor when it file a Labor Condition Application. These ad-
ditional attestations, including attesting that the company attempted to recruit US workers, have served as a big disincentive for banks and financial institutions from filing H-1B petitions. An employer, however, who has repaid funds that were received under Section 13 of the Federal Reserve Act will no longer be subject to the H-1B dependent provisions of the EAWA, according to this FAQ. It is likely that employers who repaid funding through TARP may also no longer be subject to the EAWA provisions. AILA is still awaiting further guidance from the USCIS on this issue. The ability to file H-1B petitions, without being subjected to the onerous attestations, may incentivize a small group of employers to file H-1B petitions under the current FY10 H-1B quota, but any additional filings in this economy may increase the H-1B cap count by at most a few thousand more, at least in the near term. The highest number for any single country went to Nigeria, at 6,006. The country-by-country breakdown of DV-2010 registrations appears at http:// travel.state.gov/visa/frvi/bulletin/ bulletin_4539.html. * Cyrus D Mehta, may be contacted at 212-425-0555 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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August 7, 2009
Community fears expansion of 287(g) program will lead to racial profiling Contâ€™d from page 44
Murthy explained a typical scenario of the potential misuse of 287(g) by the law enforcement agencies wherein an individual may commit a minor infraction like being pulled over for driver's license irregularity and what happens next is that often there are times when local police may not understand what would trigger contacting immigration enforcement may lead to deportation proceedings." The Obama Administration's justification for the expansion of the program of targeting criminal aliens will not be served, Murthy feels. "We are finding that because there's been an expansion of what that term "criminal alien" means, often folks who are not committing serious offenses are caught, put in detention and through deportation proceedings without really warranting it," said Murthy. "Even if you commit a minor infraction, you may end up going into deportation proceedings and facing criminal charges even though really what the focus of the program, as recently been outlined, is to go after the hardened criminals." Murthy continued to say that when terms so broad like "criminal aliens" are used, the picture people have in mind is of murderers, rapists and all those serious criminal offenders, and it is very possible for the police to capture folks on relatively benign actions and ultimately banished from the country for doing things that do not rise to the level of murder or rape or drug running. A case in point is that of Ansar Mahmood, a Pakistani living in New York, who helped an undocumented family buy a car. "He was a Greencard holder, who has been playing by the rules always and just happened to help someone get a car," narrated Murthy. "The police found out about this and they charged him with illegal harboring of undocumented immi-
grants. That led to Mahmood's detention and deportation proceedings and he was ultimately kicked out of the country and sent back to Pakistan." Murthy reiterates that is the problem with using such a broad term as criminal aliens and how police misuse that term to catch people who may not really be committing criminal offenses. "The rhetoric that is being used in support of 287(g) is to promote national security and anti-terrorism measures, but really what we need to see is if it is undermining community security; whether it is undermining the ability for communities to feel safe in their neighborhood," points out Murthy. "It really diminishes trust that police should be fostering with immigrant communities."
â€˜Even if you commit a minor infraction, you may end up going into deportation proceedingsâ€™ Of the reported number of illegal immigrants among Indian Americans in particular and South Asians in general, Murthy says, "Of course that can be a significant undercount because undocumented populations are very difficult to count. Often folks think that undocumented people are not part of the South Asian community, but more and more statistics show that there are a significant number of such people in these communities." However, Murthy adds that a lot of them are "out of status" owing to job loss, which leads of loss of visa as many of them are on work visas. "With the economy going down more and more Indian Americans are scared of losing their status and becoming undocumented, so it's definitely a
huge concern," she said. Attorney Mehta is he would have expected better from President Obama than to follow through on the failed policies of the Bush Administration. "It is not possible to effectively enforce immigration law around a broken immigration system when there is no Comprehensive Immigration Reform first," he says. Murthy echoes Mehta. "It is disappointing that the program is still going forward (under the Obama administration)," she said. "SAALT, along with many organizations has been pushing for the termination of the program. We think it has served as kind of a faulty stop gap in the absence of Federal Immigration Reform." SAALT is educating the community about the impacts of the 287(g) program along with the other immigration issues, through town halls and encouraging dialogues within the community. "Many people don't even know that this program exists," points out Murthy. "First thing is to select people in local areas where the program exists and then trying to tell them this might be something that impacts their lives." Interestingly, there are numerous law enforcement agencies that have come out against the 287(g) program. A recent report by the Police Foundation and Major Cities Peace Association highlights fears that 287(g) program and other similar programs make victims of crime afraid to call 911. "So, it's really a kind of a program that has criticism coming from all different angles," says Murthy. "It is disappointing to see that it's still in place." SAALT, along with several other Indian American civil rights groups is continuing its efforts to press for the termination of the 287(g) program. "The hope is more in terms of pushing for immigration reform so that there is a broader, holistic fix to immigration issues as a whole," Murthy said.
Indian journalist attacked in Australia MELBOURNE: A young Indian journalist, who went undercover to reveal migration and education scams in the country that try to defraud international students including those from India, was threatened and attacked by unidentified persons. The woman, working as a reporter with ABC TV, was threatened during the making of the program 'Four Corners' and was attacked over the weekend. A spokesperson of the ABC Network told PTI that the reporter is now "safe and sound." How-
ever, the spokesperson refused to divulge the identity of the woman scribe and other details citing security reasons.
The attack assumes significance in the wake of a series of racially-motivated attacks In an article on its website, ABC said the reporter went to two different migration agents posing as a customer wanting to pass an
English Language Test without having the skills and told them that she was willing to buy a fake work certificate. "She was able to do both if she paid between USD 3,000 and USD 5,000," the report said. The attack assumes significance in the wake of a series of racially-motivated attacks on Indian students in Australian cities. The report said it was not clear whether the migration agents or the colleges identified in the 'Four Corners' program were behind either the threats or the attack. -PTI
August 7, 2009
Human rights group visits Texas detention centers AUSTIN, Texas: The American Civil Liberties Union of Texas and other civil rights groups say they are meeting with an international human rights organization visiting the state to point out problems at immigrant detention centers. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights is visiting detention facilities in Texas, including the privately run T. Don Hutto family immigrant detention center in Taylor, where commission members went Wednesday. That center was the subject of a federal lawsuit. IACHR representatives also are touring the Willacy County detention center, also privately run, in Raymondville and the International Emergency Shelter for undocumented minors in
Los Fresnos. The commission plans to issue a report later this year on its findings. Lisa Graybill, ACLU of Texas legal director, said continued monitoring of the Hutto family center
IACHR representatives also are touring the Willacy County detention center, also privately run, in Raymondville by outside groups like the commission is needed because court oversight of a legal settlement expires at the end of August. The court settlement stemmed from a federal lawsuit filed by the
ACLU against the federal government over the conditions at the Hutto center. As a result of the settlement, Graybill said, many conditions at the center have improved. For example, she said, now children have more education time, more time for meals, more freedom of movement around the center and better medical care. ``I'm hopeful that we're in a different place now than we were two years ago,'' Graybill said. The US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency issued a written statement in response to the civil liberties groups Wednesday saying that it strives to keep families together while they go through immigration removal proceedings, rather than separating them. -AP
Sikh woman cop to receive compensation over racism LONDON: In a victory against racism, a Sikh woman police officer is set to get 'a five figure compensation' after a tribunal ruled out that she had suffered racial and religious discrimination during her training. An employment tribunal in Reading found that Amandeep Kaur Grewal had suffered racist and religious discrimination during her training with the Metropolitan Police. The 38-year-old has now applied for a payout, which could reach five figures, the Daily Telegraph reported. Grewal, who is of Indian origin, said she was singled out for criticism by her trainer, Pc Lucinda Rigby. She said that Rigby was "ex-
cessive" in supervising her safety training and that her application of handcuffs was checked more often than that of other students. The tribunal found that Grewal had been unfairly targeted, given negative feed back and over supervised during her training and upheld two of her complaints. "Of the 17 complaints dealt with in the judgment, only two were upheld. These were one allegation of unlawful discrimination and another unlawful racial and religious discrimination by way of victimization, a Metropolitan police spokesman said. "All other claims including victim's claim of harassment, were dismissed", he said. -PTI
August 7, 2009
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India Post 51
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August 7, 2009
Page Sponsored by Sahanis you and me. You can start becoming a nucleus of such change. You love your child, provide it the freedom it needs, give the discipline that helps its growth. You respect your fellow beings and the elders. You nourish the plants in your garden and respect the waterways in your area. You become source for inspiration for others. And you will start noticing a change in and around you. You are now contributing to Dharma. D for Divine The divine factor has to be accounted for. We are important and we can make a lot of changes. I do
(Cont'd from last week)
ll this change is not easy. Sometimes we have to pay a great price for all this. We can make small contributions on our parts. J Krishnamurti has a neat concept, "Consciousness Pool." Every time you are angry and shout at somebody, you are throwing your garbage in this Consciousness Pool. You are in fact throwing your garbage in the house you live in. Krishnamurti will say that there is no need to create this garbage. He would say that garbage production is in your control and therefore you can close this factory completely. We can all contribute to a healthy development atmosphere. There is no need to give lectures or start a club. It all has to start from
here are three factors during this process called meditation. First, there is the object of meditation, which is Divinity; it is God, it is the eternal, the infinite, the ever pure, the reality behind all appearances, who existed when nothing else existed. The second factor is the process of meditation-a continuous unbroken flow of attention
A President or a Prime minister can make changes happen faster than a person on the street. There is no question about that. Yet remembrance and working with divine gives a different aura around such a person. The divine is always important and gives that extra which is not available without the divine grace. Then you are not working just for yourself or just for your society. Your contributions go out to the whole existence and the whole existence supports you. The relationship is reciprocal. Development can happen without a healthy surrounding. Children
How do we know infrastructure of a society is healthy? DR KRISHNA BHATTA
Dharma is an indicator of general well being of a society. We may need to develop a Dharma index to denote this well being in a numerical form
not want to undermine the effect of an individual. An individual can achieve a lot. Arjuna had great achievements. Karna also had tremendous achievements. Bill Gates has also got to a point of peak achievements. Once you achieve you can contribute as well. You can contribute better from a point of achievement. Divine," is a pointing out of what should be achieved during your period of meditation-the transcending of your consciousness, beyond its present state of identification with a passing personality, into a higher state of becoming rooted in your true identity: "I am an immortal, radiant divine being, part of the Cosmic Spirit."I am beyond time and space. I have neither body nor mind. I have
born in today's Iraq and Afghanistan also are going to grow up. Children born in a dysfunctional in India and USA also grow up. But, they do not grow up in a healthy atmosphere. We can to try to make every home a healthy home. The development may happen without remembering the unseen. The benevolent unseen forces are what I connected in one single unified state,-a continuous, unbroken state of flow from the meditator towards the object of meditation, like the river Ganga flowing towards the ocean. Sometimes it is not there. The body may be motionless, but the mind is not motionless. Whereas, the very purpose of your being addressed as Radiant
Why you are repeatedly called radiant atman SWAMI CHIDANANDA
Who is meditating? What is one's feeling about oneself as a meditator? With what consciousness, what purpose, what bhava, are you meditating?
and thought upon the object. These two factors are clear. But the third factor, the meditator, is not so clear. Who is meditating? What is one's feeling about oneself as a meditator? With what consciousness, what purpose, what bhava, are you meditating? Calling you by epithets like "Radiant Atman" or "children of the
call divine. These forces are important as well. Let us all pay attention to this for our generation is the one that needs to work on it so that we form a solid ground for future generations to come and thrive. We all understand what indicators mean. Dow as an index comprises only 30 stock prices. Yet Dow has become an indicator of well being of the economy of this country. We all can relate to this. Dharma is an indicator of general well being of a society in a similar fashion. We may need to develop a Dharma index to denote this well being in a numerical form. We know the contents of the Dow. We will
no birth or death." Sometimes in meditation our bodies are motionless, but within us there is turmoil, vikshepa and chanchalatva (tossing of the mind and restlessness). The mind is going all over the universe. There is no longer that serene process of the meditator, the meditation process and the object of meditation being harmoniously
Atman, children of Divinity, at the end of your meditation is to make clear to you that just the reverse should be the case. Your body may be involved in a hundred different movements, in continuous activity, but within you there should be a firm, unshaken state of being established in kutastha atma svarupa, established in That which is unshaken. It is like Mount Meru.
today explore further what the contents of Dharma indicator could be. How do we know if the infrastructure of a society is healthy? What are those indicators? Happiness and harmony are such indicators. Is there happiness around? Are we living in harmony with each other? (To be continued) Within you there should be a state of being firmly established in your own Self-awareness, atmasthiti. Within you there should be this absolutely unshaken, firm state of being rooted in Reality, an unshaken firmness of Self-awareness of yourself as an eternal, unborn, ever-perfect divine Spirit. If this unshaken firmness of Self-abidance is there within you, then a hundred thousand activities can go on all around you, and you will not be affected. You will not move one hair's breadth away from that which you are, that which is your eternal, unvarying state of being. For, it is Reality, and it cannot change. It is not subject to change. Thus being established, move along in the world doing all the good you can, in all the ways you can, to all the beings you can, at all times and in all places. Constantly elevate your entire life into the same level as your own eternal being-not allowing your being to be dragged down, but by the power of your established Self-abidance, uplifting everything, elevating all through each and every movement of your life.
The nature of the Absolute Reality (Brahman) cannot be satisfactorily talked about or discussed. It can only be experienced within the depth of one's own being. -Yog Vashisht By using the models of Jesus, Buddha, or Krishna we have destroyed the possibility of nature throwing up unique individuals. -UG Krishnamurti "There is something good in all seeming failures. You are not to see that now. Time will reveal it. Be patient." -Swami Sivananda Why do we refer to him as Mahavir (Jain)? Because there is no act more courageous than the act of attaining one's own self. -Osho "There are no extra pieces in the universe. Everyone is here because he or she has a place to fill, and every piece must fit itself into the big jigsaw puzzle." - Deepak Chopra The desires are superior to the senses, the mind is superior to the desires, the intuition (understanding) is superior to the mind, the great Self is superior to the intuition. -Katha Upanishad An equation means nothing to me unless it expresses a thought of God. -Srinivasa Ramanujan
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August 7, 2009
India Post 53
Taking China seriously BHARTENDU KUMAR SINGH
he recent publication of the Indian Ministry of Defense (MoD) Annual Report 2008-09 has a welcome note - unlike previous reports, when military and strategic developments in China were either ignored or marginally treated, the latest report elaborates on China's progress in defense modernization at some length and reflects India's official concerns. While the seriousness is well taken, India is still way behind in understanding China and remains largely clueless about handling challenges that come from across
lution? Is Chinese leadership only waiting for an opportune moment? Is the Sino-Indian military rivalry limited to the border or could it spill over to other parts of the geopolitical chessboard? Where do the two countries figure in each other's security calculus? Can India defend itself militarily against China without losing any territory? These are the questions that matter if India has to understand China and engage it. Unfortunately, when our policymakers look for pillars of intellectual support, what they get is casual and under-researched feedbacks.
the Himalayas. All this could be attributed to one factor: our casual treatment of China. It is now widely believed that mutual misperceptions, apart from other reasons, led to the Sino-Indian War in 1962. Chinese misperceptions notwithstanding, India lived under an illusion that China would not attack India. Almost five decades later, many such misperceptions continue. While a section of Sinologists believes that China and India will not go to war since they know each other better and have high stakes in the bilateral relationship another group is confident that India can handle any Chinese misadventures and that any future war between the two countries would be a zero-sum game. Both the propositions are overly optimistic if not fallacious. They ignore China's defense modernization trends, its strategic consolidation in Tibet and near Indian waters and are yet to crack the code hidden beneath the doctrinal revision that talks of 'local wars under informationized conditions.' While other great powers have analyzed Chinese defense modernization from their own perspectives, Indian lags behind. Will China's defense modernization play a role in the ongoing border talks between the two counties and encourage it to seek a military so-
Moreover, China's defense modernization is just one aspect of our 'ignorance basket.' In recent times, trade was considered one of the most promising aspects of bilateral relations. On the face of
Is the Sino-Indian military rivalry limited to the border or could it spill over to other parts of the geopolitical chessboard? Where do the two countries figure in each other's security calculus? Can India defend itself militarily against China without losing any territory? it, it is true since Sino-Indian trade has grown by leaps and bounds defying all expectations and benchmarks and indeed China has been India's top trading partner since 2008. Probe more closely however, and the fissures are already evident. After enjoying a trade surplus with China for a long time, India has been running huge deficits (US$10 billion in 2008) in bilateral trade. Besides, India has emerged
as a primary products exporter while China exports finished goods. Worse, the acrimony over Chinese cheap products and India's quantitative and qualitative restrictions are threatening to turn into a trade war. Unfortunately, leading Indian business and trade associations have come out with little policy feedback to enable the government to turn the tide. Also, despite China and India witnessing phenomenal growth in economic, political and military relationships, there has been little effect in other areas. China and India remain two distinct societies, looking in different directions with negligible cultural exchange between populations. The two counties send more tourists to their other neighbors than to each other. The recent efforts of many newspapers notwithstanding, quality reporting on China has been missing so far. Universities and research institutions still look for official support for exploring China rather than making it an autonomous process and there has been little effort made to produce quality research on China that addresses India's concerns. Most countries with stakes in peaceful relations with China have invested in having a primary database on China's economic and military rise. In the US, apart from universities and research institutions, the government generates comprehensive reports on defense and other aspects of China's rise on a regular basis. In addition, the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission (USCC), established by an act of Congress, closely monitors all China-related developments and reports back to Congress. The same is true of Japan and many European countries. If India has to live in peace with China, the most economical method would be to develop a futuristic vision of China's military and economic empowerment. The annual report by the MoD notwithstanding, India needs to generate exclusive reports on China both within the government and outside it. It will be ridiculous to presume that such reports will create new tensions between the two countries. On the contrary, it will help India to identify issues that need to be raised in various dialogue platforms and interactive channels with China. A lesson needs to be learnt from the American experience. The author is on deputation to the United Nations Mission in Sudan (UNMIS). The views expressed herein are those of the author alone. Courtesy IPCS
India Post Tread softly in J&K
ndian politicians do not resign in a hurry. The older they are the more strongly they cling to their chairs. The courts also side with them by proclaiming that in case of a misdemeanor, they are innocent until proven guilty. The rare young politician that he is, Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah turned this "law" on its head by resigning claiming he is guilty until proven innocent. The charge laid against him by an Opposition leader Muzaffar Baig was that his name figures in the list of suspects in the sex scandal of 2006. The CBI which probed the scandal has disowned the list as fake. Jammu & Kashmir is like a bomb on a short fuse. A little spark can ignite it. Last summer it was the land granted for Amarnath yatris. This year it has been the Shopian rape and murder case which shook the state. Inexperienced Omar Abdullah can be accused of mishandling the issue by taking it lightly. The matter of raking up the 2006 sex scandal is an offshoot of the Shopian case discussion in the Assembly. The emotional reaction of the young chief minister raises the question whether he is equipped to handle a sensitive state like Jammu & Kashmir. You need to acquire a thick skin in order to survive in politics. There will be charges and allegations every day. Omar has been handed a corrupt bureaucracy depending on which he is bound to soil his hands. And in trying to reform the administrative machinery he can dismantle the whole system at a time when Pakistan's agents must be rubbing their hands in glee for an opportunity to stir the pot. Since the Governor has not accepted Omar's resignation and asked him to continue till he has looked into the allegation, this action of the CM would be construed as the only way out to clear the air. Pakistan backed separatists have fully exploited the government inaction in Shopian case. They are waiting to strike again at the slightest misstep by the government. Agitating and disrupting normal activity seems for them to be a full-time activity as their annual incomes are taken care of by financiers across the borders. As Omar once put it, creating trouble in Kashmir is an international industry. After the massive protests over Shopian incidents it was instructive to note the silence of the separatists when Hizbul Mujahideen militants gunned down a three-year-old boy and his father in the same region. Calling it "hypocritical" Omar said the situation would have been different if the child had been accidentally killed in firing by security forces! Analysts say that for the time being, Omar's prompt action has extinguished flames that, unchecked, could have burnt his administration down. But he has to learn that such provocations will continue to occur if he continues to be at the helm for the long term of six years that is the special tenure of the Jammu & Kashmir assembly. A little spotlight on the activities of the opposition People's Democratic Party (PDP) is called for here whose MLA, Muzaffar Baig, a former deputy chief minister, leveled the allegation against the present chief minister. The leader of this party is crafty old Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, a former chief minister who is now playing the soft separatist line. He was Home Minister of India during the prime ministership of VP Singh when his daughter was kidnapped. He laid the foundation of separatist militancy by agreeing to free several militants in exchange for his daughter's freedom. Now, after the defeat in the last election, a desperate PDP's entire focus has been on negative politics.
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August 7, 2009
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56 India Post
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