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Girisha bags first Paralympic medal for India Details on page 6

China confirms takeover of Pak's Gwadar Port

VOL 18, No. 939

September 14, 2012

50¢

Periodical Postage

INDIA, CHINA TO HOLD MILITARY EXERCISES Defense Minister's India visit 'a success'

Kaushik Basu is Chief Economist of World Bank Details on page 5

AAPI's Healthcare Summit 2013 to be held In Kochi

Details on page 5 Details on page 6

PMO protests Washington Post anti-PM story

IAFPE reception for Ambassador Nirupama Rao

Details on page 7 Details on page 7

India calls on Syria to delink from terror groups

Hate content in Pak school texts has increased

Details on page 7

Details on page 7

SEALS were told to catch Osama alive, if possible

CONTENTS Bollywood ---------------------- 34-35 Classifieds ------------------------- 47 Community Post -------------- 12-19

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Is China softening towards India? Last week’s result

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SURPRISE VISIT: The State Councillor and Minister of National Defense of China, General Liang Guanglie calling on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in New Delhi on September 4

BEIJING: Terming Chinese Defense Minister Gen Liang Guanglie's visit to India a success, China has said the two countries had agreed to push forwards relations and step up military to military exchanges. Gen Liang, the first Chinese Defense Minister to visit India in eight years, held talks with his Indian counterpart A K Antony, during his five-day visit to India. Hong Lie told a media briefing here that the visit was successful, though he declined to react to the contro-

versy over the cash gift to two Indian Air Force pilots who flew the Gen Liang from Mumbai to New Delhi. "Liang's visit to India was a success. He had meetings with political and military leaders of India," he said answering a question. "Both sides agreed to push forward China, India relations, step up military to military exchanges and work jointly to maintain the momentum of China and India relaDetails on page 5 tions," he said.

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Date Book -------------------------- 28 Edit Page --------------------------- 49 HealthScience Post --------- 36-39 Horoscope ------------------------- 20 Immigration Post ------------- 40-43 Life Style ----------------------- 24-26 Philosophy ------------------------- 48 Publisher’s Diary ------------------ 4 Real Estate -------------------- 44-46 TechBiz Post ------------------- 21-23 Travel & Hospitality Post ---- 29-31


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September 14, 2012

IndiaNewsweekly Post Mission Statement To empower the Indian Diaspora and make their voice strong and effective in countries of their adoption. RJ Media conglomerate offers a credible, professional and complete package of news, opinion, entertainment, networking and information.

Publisher’s Diary

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ulticulturalism may have become a given and almost passé as a concept in marketing today but it was long set as a theoretical standard in academics by American multinational companies. Although the American soft drink giants like Coke and Pepsi found their way into distant lands by creating their space unapologetically as all-American products - it took fast food chains a little longer before they found a way to blend into local cultures while keeping their American spirit intact. Not many Americans, who are used to seeing the welcoming golden arches, as much a part of the American landscape as Exit signs on the freeways, perhaps know that McDonald's, which pretty much flavors their cultural identity, does not serve the quintessential Big Mac in India. Launched in India some 15 years ago with a 'no beef' (read, No Big Mac) menu in metro cities, McDonald's slowly but surely found approval among the urban mall-going youth and families with disposable incomes. McDonald's is no 'Udupi' restaurant though. In so many years, it claims to be a leader in the retail food chain market with 250 restaurants and 650,000 customers a day. And now, looks like the fast food giant has finally got under the skin of Indian cultural ethos and is boldly going where all food habits in this country converge religion. So in a cheeky attempt at capturing the palette of Indian pilgrims, beginning next year, McDonald's is launching all-vegetarian outlets, strategically in tourist and pilgrim cities like Amritsar and Vaishnodevi in Jammu & Kashmir. Wow, now that's globalization meets - cultural sensitivity meets - strategic planning meets - ultra localization of a multinational brand. But while they are in India, I would warn them to trek carefully where pilgrims are concerned. Because where religion is concerned, politics is not too far behind. I already heard some murmurs coming from some offshoot of the RSS that targeting Indian pilgrims was somehow "humiliating" for Hindus and therefore they would oppose the opening of the all-vegetarian McDonald's outlets. I can only sympathize with McDonald's.

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Bollywood: Tough lessons Shah Rukh Khan bid adieu to Pahalgam, saying “Only beauty is not enuff, u gotta be tough too to survive.”

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Cover Story: Military exchanges Following Chinese Defense Minister Gen Liang Guanglie's visit, the two countries will step up military exchanges.

Community: Chalo Gujarat Gujarat & Gujaratis came alive at the threeday Chalo Gujarat World Conference at the Raritan Expo Center Expo in NJ.

Immigration: Tuition woes The new law prevents students who came from Mexico but have lived in Indiana, from paying in-state tuition.

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Life Style: Indian food book Prem Kishore stirs up memories and spices up her Indian food book with servings of humor, history, culture.

Techbiz: ONGC hauled up The CAG has hauled up ONGC for hiring a deep-sea drilling rig from Reliance without calling for competitive bids.

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Travel: Kanyakumari Kanyakumari, besides its importance as a Hindu pilgrim center, is famous for its beautiful views of sunrise and sunset.

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India, China to hold military exercises Defense Minister's India visit 'a success' BEIJING: Terming Chinese Defense Minister Gen Liang Guanglie's visit to India a success, China has said the two countries had agreed to push forwards relations and step up military to military exchanges. Gen Liang, the first Chinese Defense Minister to visit India in eight years, held talks with his Indian counterpart A K Antony, during his five-day visit to India. Hong Lie told a media briefing here that the visit was successful, though he declined to react to the controversy over the cash gift to two Indian Air Force pilots who flew the Gen Liang from Mumbai to New Delhi. "Liang's visit to India was a success. He had meetings with political and military leaders of India," he said answering a question. "Both sides agreed to push forward China, India relations, step up military to military exchanges and work jointly to maintain the momentum of China and India relations," he said. Asked about reports in the Indian media over Liang gifting Rs 50,000 cash to each of the pilot, Hong said he was not aware of

Defense Minister A. K. Antony and the State Councillor and Minister of National Defence of China, General Liang Guanglie at the delegation level talks in New Delhi on September 4

the specifics of the incident. His visit is widely reported in the Chinese media while the defense and strategic analysts said the two countries should move beyond joint military exercises and firm up the defense ties with more exchanges.

During the talks, India and China decided to resume at the "earliest" joint military exercises, which had been put on hold since 2010 over visa row, and agreed to enhance tranquility at the borders, reflecting their keenness to improve mutual confidence.-PTI

Kaushik Basu is Chief Economist of World Bank NEW YORK: The World Bank has appointed Kaushik Basu as its Chief Economist and Senior Vice President. Basu (60) will begin his term on October 1, World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said in a statement. Basu, who replaces Justin Yifu Lin, was Chief Economic Adviser in India's Finance Ministry till July. "Having worked in the Ministry of Finance, in addition to his impressive academic achievements, Kaushik is uniquely suited to help us offer evidence-based solutions and advise to client countries and provide innovative excellence in leading our development research," Kim said. "Kaushik brings the first hand experience from a developing country and will be a terrific asset to the institution," the World Bank statement added. Basu, who holds a PhD from the London School of Economics, founded the Centre for Development Economics at the Delhi School of Economics in 1992. He has also published widely

and his contributions to the field span development economics, welfare economics, industrial organization and public economics. Raghuram Rajan, Chief Economist of IMF, has replaced Basu as India's Chief Economic Adviser.

In April, Basu was quoted as saying that major economic reforms in India would hit a roadblock and are unlikely to happen before 2014, the year India goes to polls to vote for a new government India's Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia was also associated with the World Bank. He joined the multilateral institution in 1968 as a Young Professional and then held

various positions including Chief of the Income Distribution Division. Kalpana Kochhar, the Chief Economist for the South Asia Region (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka), is another Indian holding a top position in the World Bank. In April, Basu was quoted as saying that major economic reforms in India would hit a roadblock and are unlikely to happen before 2014, the year India goes to polls to vote for a new government. Basu later said his remarks were addressed towards the possible European crisis in 2014 and had nothing to do with the 2014 general elections as had been reported in the media. India will see "some important" reforms in the next six months, including on subsidies and FDI in retail, he had later said. While serving as the Chief Economic Adviser, he had been on leave from his position as Professor of Economics and the C Marks Professor of International Studies at Cornell University. -PTI

Chinese Defense Minister gifts Rs one lakh to IAF pilots NEW DELHI: It was an unusual gift from Chinese Defense Minister Gen Liang Guang Lie to two Indian Air Force pilots - Rs one lakh in cash. The pilots were given cash in two envelopes after they flew the visiting minister by special IAF aircraft from Mumbai to Delhi, sources told PTI here. They said after seeing off Liang, the pilots checked their 'unusual gift' in sealed envelopes and then realized it was Rs one lakh cash in Indian currency. The Captain of the aircraft

then informed the Air Headquarters about the 'gift' and it was decided that the money would be deposited in the Government depository (toshakhana), the sources said. They said the money could not be returned to the Chinese Defense Minister due to sensitivities involved in it. IAF officials said when Indian dignitaries travel on these aircraft for foreign trips, they gift ties and other small mementos as a token of appreciation to the aircraft crew.-PTI

China confirms takeover of Pak's Gwadar Port BEIJING: Ahead of Pakistan Premier Raja Pervez Ashraf's visit here, China has tacitly confirmed reports that it was taking over the strategic Gwadar deep water port in Balochistan, which it may convert into an oil pipeline hub to augment its energy supplies from the Gulf. Asked about Pakistan Shipping Minister Babar Khan Ghauri's remarks that China may take over the port operations with USD 10 billion investment following pullout of Singapore Port Authority (SPA), Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said both countries are engaged in cooperation to build infrastructure projects. "China and Pakistan are neigh-

bors of traditional friendship. Over the years, China and Pakistan have engaged in wide-ranging cooperation in all fields including infrastructure construction with a view to helping Pakistan improve people's well-being and promote social and economic development," Hong said in a written response to a query from PTI. "Such cooperation is also beneficial to regional stability and development," he said, without directly referring to Babar's comments. He also did not say whether the issue would be discussed during Ashraf's visit to attend the World Economic Forum 2012, also known as Summer Davos, starting from September 11 at Tianjin city.-PTI


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AAPI's Healthcare Summit 2013 to be held In Kochi CHICAGO, IL: Indo-US Global Health Summit 2013 (GHS), organized by the Association of Ameri-

This international healthcare summit is a progressive transformation from the first Indo-US Healthcare Summit launched by AAPI USA in 2006 under the lead-

can Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) in collaboration with the Government of India will be held in Kochi, India from Jan 1-3, 2013. Aimed at advancing the accessibility, affordability and the quality of world-class healthcare, the Summit will focus on prevention, diagnosis, treatment options and share ways to truly improve healthcare transcending global boundaries. "AAPI USA has been actively engaged in harnessing the power of Indian Diaspora," Dr. Narendra Kumar, president of AAPI, said. "In our efforts to realize these goals, we have successfully gained the support of several leading healthcare experts and profes-

ership of Dr. Hemant Patel and moderated by Anwar Feroz. "Providing a forum for innovative opportunities for learning, networking and giving back to our motherland that have now enabled us to plan ahead and prepare for an outstanding event that has already received confirmation and endorsement from over 300 very prominent and talented physicians and surgeons that are very passionate about serving their homeland, mother India," Dr. Kumar added. During the past four Summits since the first innovative summit in 2006, AAPI has been instrumental in developing strategic alliances with various organizations. "It is

India Post News Service

The first ever scientific poster session will facilitate dissemination and exchange of best practices. More than 100 opinion leaders and expert speakers from across the globe will present cutting-edge scientific findings related to clinical practice sional physician associations, including GAPIO and AKMG to collaborate on this ground breaking international healthcare summit, designed to bring the best, most efficient and cost effective healthcare solutions to the people of India."

this experience and the resulting relationships that have enabled us to organize this outstanding event, which has already received the endorsement from more than 300 prominent and talented physicians and surgeons who are passionate about serving their homeland," Dr.

Jayesh Shah, President-Elect of AAPI, said. The Summit, which is a publicprivate initiative between the Government of India and AAPI, is all about dedication and commitment of Indian-American physicians to improving healthcare in India, he added. GHS 2013 will include a scientific program of GHS developed by leading experts with contributions by the Scientific Advisory Board and International Scientific Committee, which will includes high priority areas like cardiology, maternal and child health, diabetes, oncology, surgery, mental health, immunology and lung health, HIT, allergy and the impact of comorbidities, Dr. Shah elaborated. Featuring plenary sessions, interactive roundtables, clinical practice workshops, and meet-the-expert sessions, the first ever scientific poster session will facilitate dissemination and exchange of best practices. More than 100 opinion leaders and expert speakers from across the globe will present cutting-edge scientific findings related to clinical practice, and the dozens of Chairs and speakers will represent major centers of excellence, institutions and professional associations. For the first time at GHS, a CEO Forum representing CEOs from around the world and from hospitals, teaching institutions and major healthcare sectors, including pharmaceutical, medical devices and technology, will join together to explore potential opportunities for collaboration, Dr. Kumar said. An added attraction to the participating physicians is that the program will enable them to obtain 14 hours of credit, has been accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education. Healthcare in India is one of the largest sectors, in terms of revenue and employment. India is making significant improvements in the healthcare infrastructure and is building modern medical facilities

throughout India. Indian doctors have made tremendous progress in the 21st century and India is now being touted as a medical tourism hub. There is an urgent need to create additional health infrastructure, which entails a higher level of investment in the Indian healthcare market in the coming years. And the government of India is committed to the ever increasing need to invest in the health care system in India. Being organized at this critical phase, GHS 2013 is aimed at exploring possibilities for greater collaboration and cooperation between the physicians and health care providers in India with those of Indian origin and major health-care providers abroad, ex-

Prasad Shetty, MD (Medical Director, Narayana Hrudayalaya Hospital, Bangalore), Naresh Trehan, MD (CMD, Medanta-Medicity, Gurgaon, India), Kalpalatha Guntupalli, MD (Former President of AAPI), Dattatreyudu Nori, MD (Professor of Oncology, The New York Presbyterian Hospital) and Chittaranjan Ranawat, MD (Clinical Professor of Orthopedic Surgery, Cornell University, NY). The Summit is being organized by The Overseas India Conclave, formed under AAPI leadership, in collaboration with leading healthcare experts and professional associations, including Indian Medical Association (IMA), Global Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (GAPIO) and the

plained Dr. Ravi Jahagirdar, vicepresident of AAPI. Among those representing the Government of India and addressing the Summit include: India's Minister of Overseas Indian Affairs, Vayalar Ravi, India's Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Chief Minister of Kerala, Oommen Chandy, and Advisor to the Prime Minister of India, T.K.A Nair. Expected to have over 1,000 participants from across the globe, GHS 2013 keynote speakers and expert panel will include Jeremy Lazarus, MD (President, American Medical Association, Chicago), Emmanuel G. Cassimatis, MD (President and CEO, ECFMG USA), Prathap C. Reddy, MD (Chairman, Apollo Group of Hospitals), Devi

Association of Kerala Medical Graduates USA (AKMG), as well as the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs and India Development Foundation of Overseas Indians. The Overseas India Conclave is led by Dr. Narendra Kumar, Dr. Jayesh Shah, Dr. Ravi Jahagirdar, Dr. Viquar Syed, Dr. Rajan Shanti Sadanandam, Dr. Sudhir Parikh, Prof. Gan Bhukta, Dr. B. R. Shetty, Dr. Shrigopal Sharma, Dr. Sampat Shivangi, Dr. Hemant Patel, Mr. Anwar Feroz, Dr. Krishan Kumar and Mr. Sante S. Chary. GHS 2013 will be held at the prestigious Le MĂŠridien's signature chic world-class convention centre, ideally located between the Kochi international airport, the business districts, and amongst the natural habitat.

Girisha bags first Paralympic medal for India

Silver medalist Indias Girisha Hosanagara Nagarajegowda reacts after clearing the bar in the men’s high jump F42 classification final during the athletics competition at the 2012 Paralympics

LONDON: Girisha Hosanagara Nagarajegowda gave India its first medal at the Paralympic Games after bagging a silver in the Men's High Jump F42 event here. The 24-year old from Karnataka, who has an impairment in his left leg, sailed over a height of 1.74m using scissors technique in the final of the event to finish second in the presence of an 80,000 capacity crowd last night. Iliesa Delana of Fiji won the

gold, while Lukasz Mamczarz of Poland settled for bronze. Although Delana finished on the same height of 1.74m as Girisha and Mamczarz but won gold on the basis of taking less jumps. Girisha, who is supported by Samarthanam, a Bangalore-based NGO for the disabled since 2008, took part in a three week long preGames training camp at Basildon Sporting Village sponsored by the Government of India. -PTI


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IAFPE reception for Ambassador ‘Hate content in Pak school texts increased manifold’ Nirupama Rao India Post News Service

TAMPA, FL: IAFPE hosted a reception for Ambassador Nirupama Rao on the sidelines of the Republican National Convention in Tampa FL on August 29, at India Cultural Center. Tampa area Indian Americans and community leaders were at hand to receive and welcome Ambassador Rao. Mrs Rao was accompanied by Mr. Pranay Verma, Political Consul at Indian Embassy in Washington DC. Dr. Sampat Shivangi, National President of Indian American Forum along with the Host Committee of Florida chapter IAFPE President Dr. Emandi Rao welcomed the distinguished Ambassador and invitees. Dr. Shivangi in his welcome address gave a brief history of Indian American Forum which is one of the oldest Indian American Organizations in the country and its contributions to the Indian American community in lobbying for Family Reunification bill in the Congress and successfully testifying in US congress which paved the way of thousand of Indian

Amassador Nirupama Rao with (L-R) Dr. E. Rao, Dr. Sampat Shivangi and Dr. V. Kabaria at Tampa Reception

Immigrants to immigrate to USA. Ambassador Rao appreciated the efforts of Indian American Community which by sheer hard work and ethics have marveled in their adopted country of USA. She briefed about extensive reforms in India that have brought up economic boom the country is enjoying. Ambassador Rao asked Indian American community to be supportive of their motherland in spite

of few shortcomings India may have at this time. Dr. Shivangi and Dr. Rao thanked the Ambassador for her graciousness and being there to greet the community in spite of her heavy schedule. AJC representative also spoke on close ties between US, Israel and India and AJC is looking forward to the continued support to Indian Americans and community.

India calls on Syria to dissociate from terror groups UNITED NATIONS: As the crisis in Syria worsens, India has asked all parties in the troubled nation to dissociate themselves from terrorist groups, which it said are exploiting the increasingly militarized conflict. Strongly condemning the terrorist acts that continue to be perpetrated in Syria against state institutions and public infrastructure, India's Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Hardeep Singh Puri said the Syrian conflict has become increasingly more militarized, which is being exploited by well-known terrorist groups. "We call upon all parties, Syrian as well as foreign, to dissociate themselves from terrorist groups and ensure that no space or justification is provided for terrorist acts," Puri said at an UN General Assembly meeting on Syria. He expressed concern that the Syrian parties have pursued a military approach to realize their objectives instead of seriously commencing a Syrian-led political process. With the international commu-

nity failing in its efforts to address the crisis, he said, there is an urgent need for countries to "close ranks and send a united message to the Syrian parties."

ian citizens. "There is no other way to bring about a sustained cessation of violence in all its forms by all parties," he added.

India's Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Hardeep Singh Puri

The parties in Syria must be urged to recommit themselves to resolving the crisis peacefully through a Syrian-led inclusive political process that can meet the legitimate aspirations of all Syr-

The nearly 18-month long crisis has affected the region as a whole and the deteriorating security situation has exacerbated the humanitarian sufferings of the Syrian population, Puri said. -PTI

LAHORE: At a time when Paki- save younger students from such stan is plagued by terrorism, its influences at the outset," the NCJP official academia has been unable said in a report entitled "Educato stop the inclusion of hate ma- tion or Fanning Hate". terial targeting Hindus, Christians The report said there were 45 and Sikhs and fanning sectarian lines containing hate material in hatred in school curriculum. books published in Punjab durThis hate material included in ing 2009-11, and the figure intext books being used in Punjab creased to 122 lines this year. and Sindh provinces mainly tarThe text books for Urdu and gets the country's religious mi- Pakistan Studies for Classes VII, norities - Hindus, Christians and VIII, IX and X were found to be Sikhs - and India and Westerners, says the NGO National Commis- According to a content sion for Justice and analysis of books published Peace. by the Punjab and Sindh text "The latest text books have more hate book boards that was done content than those writby the NCJP, the hate conten previously," the NGO said in a state- tent has increased manifold ment. with the passage of time According to a content analysis of books published by the Punjab and the "most affected", as hate maSindh text book boards that was terial increased from 15 lines to 86 done by the NCJP, the hate con- lines. tent has increased manifold with In all, 22 lessons in the current the passage of time. curriculum for primary and sec"Many textbooks that had no ondary schools have hate conhate material in their earlier ver- tent, the report said. sions, now carry such material in Rights and civil society groups Punjab and Sindh provinces. The have often blamed such contents issue of religious intolerance in text books for fanning sectarshould be discussed openly and ian hatred and animosity towards that must lead to some action to countries like India. -PTI

PMO protests against Washington Post story NEW DELHI: The Prime Minister's Office (PMO) has lodged a formal protest with Washington Post newspaper for an article critical of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, terming it as "unethical and unprofessional" conduct of the journalist. The PMO, in its reaction posted on the US-based newspaper's website, has said the story was "totally onesided" as the journalist "never" got in touch with the PMO for its version. "We do not complain about criticism of the government which is a journalist's right. But I am writing this letter for pointing out unethical and unprofessional conduct at your part," said a letter by Pankaj Pachauri, Communications Adviser to the Prime Minister's Office. In the letter, Pachauri has complained that the journalist "despite all lines of conversations open", never "got in touch with us for our side of the story though

you regularly talk to me about information from the PMO. This story thus becomes totally one sided." Pachauri refers to the journalist Simon Denyer's mention that his request for an interview was declined and says that his mail had

clearly stated that interview was declined 'till the Monsoon Session' of Parliament which gets over tomorrow. With regard to quotes attributed to former Media Adviser to the PM Sanjaya Baru, Pachauri has stated that he has complained that Denyer 'rehashed and used' an eight-month-old quote from an Indian magazine.-PTI


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Tribute to Sri Chinmoy - world's largest tennis racket India Post News Service

NEW YORK: Ashrita Furman, holder of the most Guinness records and a team of 20 disciples of Sri Chinmoy constructed the world's largest tennis racket within ten days on the occasion of Sri Chinmoy's birthday. Furman dedicated the racket to Sri Chinmoy (19312007), who would have been 81 on August 27. A world peace dreamer and an avid tennis player Sri Chinmoy taught Furman meditation and

inspired him for self-transcendence. For every birthday Furman wants to give "Gurudakshina" or a birthday gift to his Guru and joy to many in the form of a new significant Guinness World Record. Some of the previous records included world's largest pencil (72 feet long) and world's largest lollipop. The old fashioned wood racket has a height of 50 feet (15.24 meters) and width of 16 feet (4.87 m.). It is a reproduction of the model named after legend

New York August 28 - Sri Chinmoy's disciples from various countries are standing at the world's largest (Sri Chinmoy Birthday) tennis racket to honour the 81st birth anniversary of world peace visionary Sri Chinmoy (1931-2007) . The old fashioned wood racket has a height of 50 feet and a width of 16 feet. Pics Jovan Gauthier

Ashrita Furman, holder of the most Guinness Records (currently 151) stands in front of the world's largest (Sri Chinmoy birthday) tennis racket to honour 81st birth anniversary of world peace visionary

Billie Jean King. Sri Chinmoy and President Michael Gorbachev presented together the World Athlete award to Billie Jean King in 2006. Sri Chinmoy met and played with many tennis players and had a close friendship with some of them such as India's Leander Paes.

Sri Chinmoy made many selftranscendence activities such as writing 1600 books, composing 21000 songs, drawing thousands of paintings in his lifetime and some short time records such as writing 700 poems in 24 hours. Inspired by his Guru, Furman started making Guinness World

Records becoming No. 1 in the world. At present he has 151 world records to his credit. Furman says, "I am trying to show others that our human capacity is unlimited". Furmanhas taken India's ancient message 'Aham Brahmasmi (I am unlimited) to his heart.

SEALS were told to catch Osama 25 years of World Harmony Run celebrated alive, if possible WASHINGTON: The raid on Osama bin Laden's hideout in Pakistan was "not a kill-only" mission as commandos were told to capture the dreaded al-Qaeda chief alive if possible, a former Navy SEAL has claimed. Former commando Matt Bissonnette, who has written a book titled 'No Easy Day: The Firsthand Account of the Mission That Killed Osama bin Laden', using the pseudonym "Mark Owen," has made the claim in an interview to CBS news. "This was absolutely not a killonly mission. It was made very clear to us throughout our training for this that, 'Hey, if given the opportunity, this is not an assassination. You will capture him alive... if feasible'," Bissonnette said. A makeup artist was employed to disguise his appearance and sound manipulation was used to mask his real voice for the interview. His book, "No Easy Day" has irked the Pentagon as it had threatened to take legal action against the former Navy SEAL on

charges of leaking classified information. On being asked if capturing the most wanted terrorist was the preferred thing, Bissonnette said, "Yeah, yeah. I mean, we're not there to assassinate somebody.

We weren't sent in to murder him. This was, Hey, kill or capture." Apart from making the claim that they were told to capture bin Laden alive if possible, Bissonnette also gave an insight

in to the crashing of one of the two helicopters in the courtyard of bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad on May 2, last year. Pakistan didn't know they were coming so the helicopters, flown by the Army's 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, flew at tree-top level on a moonless night to avoid Pakistani air defenses. They reached the target and prepared to slide down ropes into the compound when everything went wrong in Bissonnette's chopper. "And then, all of a sudden, we banked hard 90 degrees, and then we - once we went hard 90 - it was very apparent that something was wrong," Bissonnette said. "Something about the downdraft hitting the complex of walls below caused the heavily loaded helicopter to falter in the air," he added. Bin Laden was shot in the head by a "point man" from the crack US Navy SEALS unit as the alQaeda leader peered out through his narrowly-opened bedroom door. -PTI

India Post News Service

NEW YORK: United Nations representatives, Olympians and peace-loving students of Sri Chinmoy from more than 55 countries celebrated 25 years of the World Harmony Run at Dag Hammarshield Plaza near the United Nations in New York. The World Harmony Run was founded by Indian origin visionary and world peace dreamer Sri Chinmoy in 1987 to inspire humanity for a harmonious world. He dedicated his life for world harmony through his books, music, poetry, paintings, meditation centers and projects such as the World Harmony Run. The USA 50 state 4 month 10000 miles relay concluded on August 15 in New York. Thousands participated in towns and cities across USA that includes about 50000 school children. The European 50 country torch relay will end in October in Vienna, Austria. Runs have also taken place in Canada, India, New Zealand, South America, Asia,

Sri Chinmoy with the World Harmony Run Torch in 2007

Africa and Australia. In honor of to the 25th anniversary Canadian Mountain climber Samuel Nirabadhi Wyatt carried the World Harmony Run Torch to the top of Mt. Everest. During the ceremony the WHR Torch-Bearer award was given to Olympian Bob Beamon who holds the longest unbroken Olympic record of 44 years. US Congressman Ben Gilman and Cathy Oerter also received the award for their world harmony related activities.


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Women's Empowerment grant for Rajasthan NGO India Post News Service

SINGAPORE: The Singapore Committee for UN Women (UN Women Singapore) and MasterCard Worldwide have awarded a US$25,000 Women's Empowerment grant to Women's Private Personal Market Place from Rajasthan, India at the Project Inspire: 5 Minutes to Change the World 2012 Grand Finals. Rustam Sengupta, who represented his team for Women's Private Personal Market Place, was among the nine finalists who pitched their project ideas to a live judging panel comprising some of the world's top global development and social entrepreneurial experts, social advocates and business leaders. The winning project aims to empower women in rural Rajasthan to become entrepreneurs by selling feminine hygiene products to other rural women via a mobile phone application. The application also acts as a platform to provide essential health and sanitary education to these largely illiterate women, as well as offer them a private interface to access feminine hygiene products. This project is a collaboration between Rajasthan-based Boond, and Decode Global, a Canadian incubator of mobile apps for social change. It was born after both CEOs (Rustam Sengupta and Angelique Mannella respectively) met in Singapore while enrolled at the MBA Program at the

INSEAD Asia Campus. The scalable and sustainable micro-business model leverages the high penetration of mobile phones in India (225 million female mobile phone subscribers in India). In a surprise development at the Grand Finals, MasterCard put forward a US$10,000 Special Recognition Award, which the judging panel presented to LIFE - Live-

The winning project aims to empower women in rural Rajasthan to become entrepreneurs by selling feminine hygiene products to other rural women via a mobile phone application lihood Initiative for Empowerment from Sri Lanka. Their project aims to help a group of war-affected women returnees, largely widows, in Northern Sri Lanka enhance their entrepreneurship capacities through micro-business training and access to credit facilities in order to help them expand their livelihoods. The project includes training on goat farming, home gardening, business development, marketing and financial management. Additionally, Project Stitch of

the Philippines led by Soleil Manzano, Marian Santos, and Jose Maningat, was named the winner of the first-ever Project Inspire People's Choice Award, receiving the largest share of online votes from the public. Project Stitch aims to support the livelihood of displaced women in the poor communities of Manila through sewing co-operatives. You can read more about the project and the inspiring young changemakers that created it here. The Grand Finals, held at the INSEAD Asia Campus in Singapore, was broadcast live on 31 August to a worldwide audience via the Project Inspire website at www.5minutestochangetheworld.org. A joint initiative by UN Women Singapore and MasterCard, Project Inspire - now in its second year -was conceived in 2011 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of International Women's Day and the 25th anniversary of MasterCard in Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa. The nine finalists - from India (3), Uganda, Cambodia, Nepal, Indonesia, Philippines and Sri Lanka - were selected out of more than 350 teams worldwide who submitted their life-changing ideas to empower women and girls across Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa. The submissions were in the form of five minute pitch videos (or written proposals) for a chance to win the US$25,000 grant.

UK rejects another plea on Indian students

USAID IN SYRIA: Rajiv Shah, the head of the U.S. Agency for International Development speaks to Syrian refugee children in one of UNICEF tents, at Zaatari Refugee Camp, in Mafraq, Jordan, Sept. 5. The head of USAID says Washington is providing an additional (Canadian) $21 million to help Syrian refugees, raising its overall contribution to (Canadian) $100 million. Rajiv Shah says the money will be funneled through the U.N. World Food Program to hundreds of thousands of Syrians displaced inside their country, to others in desperate humanitarian need and to refugees who fled to Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq

LONDON: Under compulsion to deliver election promise to cut immigration, Britain's immigration minister has again rejected a recommendation by a key parliamentary committee to exclude Indian and other non-EU students from overall migration statistics. The demand to exclude non-EU students from immigration figures has been made by several stakeholders, including trade and industry organizations, since most of them return home after completing studies. The latest demand had been made by the Business, Innovation and Skills Committee of Parliament. It has often been pointed out that countries such as United States do not include overseas students in overall immigration figures.

Project Inspire 2012 Winners alongside Georgette Tan (MasterCard) and Trina Liang-Lin (UN Women Singapore)

Indian doctor arrested on child molestation charges NEW YORK: A 35-year-old Indian doctor has been arrested on charges of attempted child molestation in the US state of Tennessee. Vikul Patel, a doctor of internal medicine, was arrested without incident on September 2 in Georgia by the FBI-led Safe Child Task Force agents and officers after he traveled there to meet a minor child for purposes of having sex, acting Special Agent in Charge Ricky Maxwell said in a statement. Patel, of Chattanooga, came to the attention of law enforcement when he began a series of "chats" over the internet with undercover agents regarding his desire to have sex with a minor child. Patel was detained at the

Walker County Detention Center on state charges of attempted

Vikul Patel

child molestation and violation of the Computer Pornography Act. He has been released on bond, according to Walker County Detention Center officials. -PTI


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Give Obama more time to clean up Republican mess: Bill Clinton CHARLOTTE: Former US President Bill Clinton took the stage at the Democratic National Convention here to make a passionate plea to Americans to re-elect Barack Obama, saying he needs four more years to clean up the "mess" left behind by the Republicans. Lending his dazzle to Obama's re-election efforts, Clinton speaking directly to the American electorate said he believes "with all my heart" that the incumbent was leading a

posed his name for renomination as Democratic candidate, saying the incumbent was cool on the outside but "burns for America" inside. "I want to nominate a man cool on the outside but burning for America on the inside. A man who believes we can build a new American Dream economy driven by innovation and creativity, education and cooperation. A man who had the good sense to marry Michelle Obama," he said.

Obama, who is running neck to neck with his Republican challenger Mitt Romney for November presidential elections, political pundits say, is banking on Clinton to give him the much needed edge over Romney in the days to come remarkable, if incomplete revival. "In Tampa the Republican argument against the President's reelection was pretty simple: We left him a total mess, he hasn't finished cleaning it up yet, so fire him and put us back in," he said in his 48minute rousing prime-time speech. "We are going to keep President Obama on the job!" Clinton said amidst laud applause and cheer from the audience. The two-time president shared the dais with Obama and later pro-

"I want Barack Obama to be the next president of the United States and I proudly nominate him to the standard bearer of the Democratic Party," he said. Clinton's nomination of 51year-old Obama as the Democratic candidate was approved by the party's delegates at the convention. Obama faces Republican Mitt Romney in the November 6 presidential elections. He also had a word of praise for his wife Secretary of State

Hillary Clinton who was not present at the convention. "I'm so proud of her and grateful to our entire national security team for all they've done to make us safer and stronger and to build a world with more partners and fewer enemies," Clinton said. Clinton praised Obama for appointing Hillary as his cabinet colleague who bitterly fought against him during the 2008 primaries. "He appointed Cabinet members who supported Hillary in the primaries. Heck, he even appointed Hillary!" Clinton said amidst another round of applause and cheer from the audience. Obama, who is running neck to neck with his Republican challenger Mitt Romney for November presidential elections, political pundits say, is banking on Clinton to give him the much needed edge over Romney in the days to come. Clinton is still considered to be the most popular Democratic leader with his approval rating above 70 per cent. He strongly praised the track record of Obama and said that the country needs Obama for another four years. "The most important question is, what kind of country do you want to live in?" he asked the audience. "If you want a you're-on-your-

Terrorists taking to cyber-space: Shinde NEW DELHI: Cyber-space has become another tool in the hands of terrorists who post "motivated rumors" in social networking sites thereby creating a new challenge to the security forces in the country, Union Home Minister Sushi Kumar Shinde said here. "There is increasing evidence of resort taken by terrorists to the cyber-space domain. The recent incident in Bengaluru in Karnataka, Pune in Maharashtra and other states of the country where motivated rumors and irresponsible use of the social media networking media posed a new challenge," he said addressing the country's top police brass here. Shinde, who took over as the Home Minister on August one, said cyber-space by providing a pervasive infrastructure for discreet communication is proving to be a facilitator for the malevolent seeking to enlist new recruits and to purvey a distorted version of the reality.

"Anonymity that the user acquires in this medium can sometimes test the capacities of even the most experienced police investigator. Police forces will have to develop skills in this area not just for locating malicious content but also for identifying those re-

Union Home Minister Sushi Kumar Shinde

sponsible for posting it," he said inaugurating a three-day long conference of Directors General and Inspectors General of Police organized by Intelligence Bureau.

There was no mention of National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC) in his speech. Shinde asked the security agencies to take "prompt notice" of every piece of intelligence as it is received to tackle the continuous thrust of Pakistan-based Islamist groups to infiltrate terrorists and hardware across the border and Line of Control. "I would urge you to take prompt notice of every piece of intelligence as it is received, develop capacities for addressing the threats posed by terrorism, share experiences and create an overall milieu of collaboration wherein there should be no distinction between central agencies and state police forces as they work together towards achieving the common objective of curbing terrorism," he said. He lauded the agencies for busting 19 terrorists modules across the country since January 2011. -PTI

Former President Bill Clinton hugs President Barack Obama after President Obama walked on stage after Clinton’s speech the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., on Wednesday, Sept. 5

own, winner-take-all society, you should support the Republican ticket. If you want a country of shared prosperity and shared re-

sponsibility - a we're-all-in-this-together society - you should vote for Barack Obama and Joe Biden," said the former US President.-PTI

'Pak puts on hold plans to import petrol from India' ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has "shelved" plans to import petrol, diesel and other petroleum products from India till 2014 due to differences in product specifications used in the two countries, according to a media report. Pakistani refineries produce 'zero-euro' quality oil, whereas Indian refineries produce Euro3 and Euro-4 quality oil, which is cleaner and more environmentally friendly. Pakistan is still preparing a roadmap to introduce Euro-2, Euro-3 and Euro-4 for clean energy, The Express Tribune reported. "Pakistani refineries have been tasked to produce Euro-2 quality diesel by July 2014 and therefore the government wants to shelve the plan of oil trade with India till then," an unnamed official said. Another reason for the deci-

sion is that Pakistan has inked an oil supply contract with Kuwait Petroleum Corporation that is valid till 2014, the official said. Pakistan also plans to meet only 20-25 per cent of its needs for petroleum products from India to avoid over-reliance due to security concerns. "We will continue to import oil from Kuwait and other Gulf countries in a bid to ensure secured supplies," a government official said. Another official of the Engineering Development Board said the use of Euro-3 and Euro4 fuels would cause a technology shift and it would be difficult to run existing vehicles on fuel produced in India. "Different specifications of petroleum products have barred the countries from reaching any agreement," a senior unnamed government official said. -PTI


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Second edition of Corporate Games to be bigger & better India Post News Service

NEW DELHI: The first-ever Delhi Corporate Games were held at the Siri Fort Sports Complex in February 2012. With the success of the first experiment, Delhi Corporate Games is now ready for its Second Edition from 22nd to 25th November 2012. In the first Corporate Games, 27 Corporates participated which included ONGC, NTPC, Punj Lloyd, TCS, Dupont, ARI, Bisleri, HDFC Bank. They all competed in 12 disciplines.

Corporate Games are staged annually in 53 cities of 25 countries. The concept has been created to provide employees at all levels of businesses and organizations in all industry sectors, to experience the thrill and excitement of participating in a multidisciplinary sports festival. Corporate Games CEO India Mr. OP Bhatia announced at a press conference here that the Second Edition of the multi-sports festival for businesses and organizations would be held from November 22 to 25 at Siri Fort Sports Complex in the disciplines of badminton, basketball, billiards, chess, cricket (8 a-side), hockey, soccer, golf, squash, table tennis and tennis. This time the events of running, soccer and cycling will be held at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium. There would be in all14 sports disciplines. More than 1100 corporate employees from 60 Corporates and public sector undertakings as well as members of Siri Fort Sports Complex and Vasant Kunj Sports Complex would be competing in these games. Mr. Bhatia informed that Mr Ajay Maken, Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports has consented to be the Games Patron (India) of the Corporate Games. The minis-

ter has agreed to inaugurate the Games on 22nd November evening at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium. Mr. Bhatia said that in addition to first games participants, interest has been shown by organizations like ONGC, HDFC Mumbai, HDFC Delhi, HCL Technologies, SERCO, Tata Power, GE (Energy),Barclays Bank, Barista Limited, Tata Sky, Silver Skills, PWC, ARI, Arcelor Mittal, Genpact, Apollo Munich, SPML, Jet Airways, Hughes Systique India Pvt. Ltd, Firefox, NTPC. Talks are being held with another 30 or-

ganizations for participation. Mr Bhatia said the biggest advantage of Corporate Games is that it organizes competitions in different age-groups: 19-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50 and above. Corporate Games follow rules of international sports federations with some modifications to make the games more interesting and to finish the games in 3-4 days. He said that cricket in Corporate Games is an 8 member team sport with 3 on the bench for rolling substitution and each innings is of 10 overs. Similarly soccer is a game of 2 halves of 30 minutes each and all age-groups are mixed in the team games. In the Corporate Games, medals are awarded to winners and points are given from first to eighth position. These points are then added to give a special trophy known as medalist award to the Corporate getting maximum points. This encourages senior management of Corporates to train their players to win maximum medals .Another trophy known as Sports for Life Trophy is given to the company fielding maximum number of sportspersons. According to reports in the media, doctors are saying that Indian youth is falling prey to heart disease due to erratic food habits

and lack of exercise. Dr Naresh Trehan, well-known cardiologist, says in an interview in India Today, that most of the CEOs of Corporates are under stress and more than 15 to 20 % executives miss office for 20 to 25 days in a year due to lifestyle diseases. More than eight hours of sedentary jobs and lack of physical exercise and improper diet increases the risk of lifestyle diseases in the age group of 30-40 years. Corporate Games is an opportunity to come out and play and regularly keep oneself fit by regular exercise. Mr Bhatia said, "Under the Games subsidiary scheme we are introducing, 'Do You Play' where youngsters can book online and they are provided opportunities to play on weekends team games like basketball and football. Later we will also organize badminton and table tennis." Mr. K.P Singh Deo, former Cabinet minister and patron of Corporate Games in India emphasized," It is good that finally Corporate Games have been introduced in India. These games have been prevalent the world over for the last two and half decades. In countries like Australia, they conduct these games in three cities namely Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne. The purpose of these games is to encourage Corporate employees to practice regularly a game of their choice and come to compete with other corporate employees with a view to maintaining life-long fitness and also inculcate good qualities of sports i.e. spirit-decorps, will to win, magnanimity in victory and defiance in defeat. Needless to say that sports helps to integrate organizations and creates feeling of friendship and fraternity, accruing in general

happiness of their employees which in turn improves productivity of the Corporates resulting in improvement in the bottom line." Mr Singh Deo said that countries become stronger who have widespread sports culture among all age-groups. "It is heartening that India has started improving its medal tally in Olympics by winning six medals including two silvers though we had the potential

Corporate Games once in two years and medal winners of each country are eligible to participate in World Corporate Games. While thanking friends from media for their continuous support to promote concept of Corporate Games in India, he mentioned it would help to create a sports culture as participants of Corporate Games, who may be young parents, would certainly encourage their

Corporate Games follow rules of international sports federations with some modifications to make the games more interesting and to finish the games in 3-4 days. He said that cricket in Corporate Games is an 8 member team sport with 3 on the bench for rolling substitution and each innings is of 10 overs to win few more medals." As senior Vice President of IOA, he added, "We should now be striving to win about 15 medals in Rio games and more than 25 medals in 2020 Olympics." Mr. A K Pandya, former Secretary Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports and Chairman of the Organizing Committee, mentioned that Corporate Games also hold World

children to play for fun and play to win. While concluding Mr Bhatia thanked the sponsors Li Ning, leading sports apparel company and Firefox - the famous biking company. He also thanked the press, both print and electronic media, for helping to promote the concept of Corporate Games.


Desi News Global Punjabi Milaap to salute Bulleh Shah THAKAR BASATI

CHICAGO: The fifth Global Punjabi Milaap will be held on Saturday, September 15 at Des Plaines Theater in Des Plaines from 1pm to 5pm. This year the theme is Baba Bulleh Shah and his Sufi poetry. Bulleh Shah was born in 1680 in a small village of Uch, Bahawalpur, Punjab, now in Pakistan. Some of his forebears were migrants from Uzbekistan. He received his early education in Pandoke and higher education in Kasur. His spiritual teacher was Sufi Shah Inayat Qadiri. Bulleh Shah practiced the Sufi tradition of Punjabi poetry established by poets like Shah Hussain, Sultan Bahu and Shah Sharaf. Details on page 15

Indian American Hindus protest before Consulate NARAIN KATARIA

NEW YORK: A protest by 100 strong Indian American Hindus was organized by Indian American Intellectuals Forum in New York September 2 near Indian Consulate to express their repugnance and revulsion against "burning of Hindu villages by Bangladeshi Muslims in collusion with Muslims from Assam and West Bengal and making thousands of Hindus (Bodos) refugees in their own country." The protesters said that India is in danger. After Kashmir, Radical Islam is taking over Assam in the North East.

COMMUNITY ACROSS AMERICA

Indians resent racist ad from Australia Details on page 19

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Gujarat comes alive at NJ event SUDHIR VYAS

EDISON: "Kem Cho", "Chel Chabilo Gujarati", "Kasumbi No Raang", "Tari aankh no afini," famous Gujarati theplas, shrikhand and all things that are associated with Gujarat and Gujaratis came alive at the three-day Chalo Gujarat World Conference at the Raritan Expo Center Expo here in New Jersey. However the sore point that shook everyone was that while the United States has been constantly denying visa to Chief Minister Narendra Modi, this time even his wax statue, which was to showcase the present day Gujarat, was also held up and never made it to the venue. However people from the audience argued that while it was fine if the visa was not granted for Modi to physically visit the Gujaratis settled in the US, why was his statue along with that of Sardar Patel and Mahatma Gandhi never allowed to enter US soil. The president of Association of Indian Americans in North America (AIANA) that hosted the show,

Bollywood star Sharman Joshi with Miss Gujarat USA Shraddha Amin

down memory lane during the 3day event it lacked the color and pageant like the earlier two events which were more glamorous and more entertainment".

People enjoyed the 'hasayaro", "dayro" led by Bhikudan Gadhvi and Bhartiben Vyas, and Sugam Sangeet in which a number of artists from Ahmedabad and other

Details on page 16

Tough contests mark Punjabi Sports Festival SURENDRA ULLAL

CHICAGO: Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago (PCS) organized its 18th annual Sports Festival recently at Falcon Park Recreation Center, in Palatine, Illinois. State of Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford and past Mayor of Palatine IL Rita Mullins inaugurated this sports festival after a colorful ribbon cutting ceremony in the presence of more than 250 enthusiastic athletes and spectators. The tournament started with a prayer and the US national anthem. Falcon Park District, Mayor Rita Mullins and Treasurer Rutherford were honored with plaques by the PCS officials. Details on page 18

Eight beauty contestants at Chalo Gujarat event

Sunil Nayak said that it was held up "in transit". But the fact remains that Modi is `persona non grata' for the US either physically or even in the form of a statue. As many as 25000 Gujarat is from all over the world participated in the event which was inaugurated by Morari Bapu and Parimal Nathwani of Reliance Industries. Akhilesh Gadhvi, who came all the way from Maryland, told this correspondent, "though I went

Members of the audience at Chalo Gujarat

places participated. However it was with the Ras Garba that the Gujaratis came into their own when they danced their heart out on the concluding day of the event. Parthiv Gohil stole the show with his reverberating singing. One of the highlights of the event was a three-dimensional film on Gujarat in Gujarati which was screened for the first time on a giant screen. Other highlights were a multimedia show, seminars on different subjects and a pageant for Gujarati girls. People appreciated the 150 feet long stage which changed befitting the event. It depicted various lifestyles of Gujarat. Cont’d on page 14


September 14, 2012

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Riya Travel & Tours launches Houston branch ANGELA LEE

HOUSTON: Carving out a name and place for itself in the Indian travel industry over the past three decades, Riya Travel & Tours is now set to do one better in this country with a steady expansion of its services and base of operations as well. It launched its Houston Branch on August 15, the day India gained its independence from British rule. This is its fifth branch, the other four being at Irving TX, Philadelphia, New York

mass media were also present. Benson Samuel, CEO / Director Riya Travels & Tours, thanked all the attendees and also made a special mention of their loyal customers by stating that "it is only with the support of our valued and loyal customers that we are able to progress and achieve our goals" and pitched for their continued support. The next stop for Riya's expansion is burgeoning Chicago market in Midwest. Riya Travel & Tours provides

Riya Travel & Tours provides a wide range of services to its patrons including domestic and international ticketing, hotel reservation, itinerary planning, visa assistance, overseas travel insurance, car rentals, home calling cards and global SIM cards and New Jersey. The Houston launch event was attended by top airline representatives, well-wishers and guests. The airliners which attended the event included Emirates, Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines, Etihad to name a few. Besides, the occasion was graced with the presence of top business executives, professionals and dignitaries from the local community. Representatives of the print and

a wide range of services to its patrons including domestic and international ticketing, hotel reservation, itinerary planning, visa assistance, overseas travel insurance, car rentals, home calling cards and global SIM cards and rail booking, among others. It is accredited to IATA (International Air Transport Association) and is a member of TAAI (Travel Agents Association of India), TAFI (Travel Agents Federa-

From left: Fazal Deen, Benson Samuel (CEO) Reji Philip, Thomas Mathew and Finny & Biju (local staff)

tion of India) and IATO (Indian Association of Tour Operators). Having over three decades of experience in the travel industry Riya Group has expanded all over the country with 45 offices and 3 overseas in the US. With over 1500 professionals to assist the customers, it offers expert guidance

and attention to detail giving one optimum value for the money. Benson pointed out that "Rica's travel portal is dedicated to help travelers not only to plan out but also to book exciting trips and much more. Our mission as an organization is to create inspiring and meaningful experiences that

connect people and places together. Airline ticketing being our core activity is what we have gained many praises for. The epitome of high quality services and timely deliveries has won Riya recognition and laurels, accolades and awards from various quarters."

NAFIA convention in Chicago next month restaurant on Devon Avenue here, he said that NFIA has as its members 150 associations of Indian origin representing close to 240,000 Indian Americans all over the country. "It is after a lapse of ten years that NFIA will be holding its Convention here and that it would be endeavor of the Convention committee to

NFIA Convention Committee members: L to R Sohan Joshi Convener, Ms Vandana Jhingan and Kanti Patel Co-conveners

RAMESH SOPARAWALA India Post News Service

CHICAGO: An umbrella organization of scores of Indian associations across the country, National Federation of Indian Associations (NFIA), has announced holding its annual

Convention in Chicago in middle October this year. Sohan Joshi, the Convention Committee chair, said here that the three-day Convention commencing from Friday October 12 and ending Sunday October 14 will be held at Holiday Inn in Rolling Meadows and is ex-

pected to be attended by 125 delegates from across the country besides hundreds of members, guests and invited dignitaries from Chicago land and neighboring States of Indiana, Wisconsin and Michigan. Talking to ethnic Indian media over lunch at Mysore Woodland

ferences related to health, investment, economic and social issues. "We would shun political issues of this country and back home India, and concentrate on issues that affect the community at large. Our main theme is Unity - unity among Indian Americans so that we pull our resources, energy and strength in addressing concerns

"We would shun political issues of this country and back home India, and concentrate on issues that affect the community at large. Our main theme is Unity - unity among Indian Americans so that we pull our resources, energy and strength in addressing concerns and problems that affect us" make it an affair to remember," he said. Briefing the media he said that the Committee has chalked out a crowded program for the three days beginning with dinner and cultural program on Friday, October 12; a banquet on Saturday 13 and lunch on Sunday October 13 interspersed with number of con-

and problems that affect us," he said. Citing specific concerns he touched upon recent shooting at Oak Creek Gurudwara near Milwaukee and observed that a unified community would be a bulwark against similar happenings in the future. Cont’d on page 14


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Gujarat comes alive at New Jersey event

Three types of vehicles used in Gujarat for local transportation - auto rickshaw, chhakada and another type of chhakda Cont’d from page 12

The organizers had promised mouth watering Gujarati cuisine but it turned out to be a damp squib with extremely poor food quality on the first day. Amends were made to some extent on the remaining two days but people were left unhappy at the end. "A leading Gujarati community leader Ramesh Patel along with one of the top persons who came from Ahmedabad commented about the food saying "I have never tasted such bad Gujarati food. We feel cheated as we all know how mouth-watering Gujarati food is. It was an insult to Gujaratis and Gujarati food. On the first day a couple of food items were spoiled and were inedible". The entertainment program including the sword dance by the Mers from United Kingdom, the dayro and the shadow dance stole the thunder. The speech by Morari Bapu, though inspirational, was too boring for the audience who demanded more of entertainment. Parimal Nathwani of Reliance Industries said, "It is important to keep alive the vibrant image of Gujarat and for that such events are necessary which would be a bridge between the generations. Gujarati music, literature and customs were slowly being forgotten by the second generation children who have settled in the US and these events can enlighten them of their link to Gujarat". While the organizers had planned a video link with Chief Minister Narendra Modi directly from Gandhinagar, the 45 minute speech was like a replay of his earlier address to the Gujaratis in US. Modi had nothing new for the community except Congress bashing and self praise. The Chief Minister

however sent a message as to how he has started a campaign against the gutka. He urged the community to dial the number and pledge their support for the campaign. Modi also urged the Gujaratis to join in their prayers for rain in the drought affected state. Shaktisinh Gohil of the Congress, who also spoke on the first day, called upon the American friends of the Gujaratis to come and visit Gujarat and enjoy its hospitality. The rickshaws and chhakdas from Ahmedabad and Rajkot were not only eye catching but people enjoyed a ride on these

not the same but at least I went down memory lane on seeing a replica of the "pols". For a moment I recalled the good old days with my husband when we lived in Mehta-ni-pol". The theme this year was "Gujarat, Gujarati, Gujaratism". Despite all the drawbacks the average Gujarati at least had a feel of Gujarat and for a moment forgot his hard days here and went down memory lanes of his motherland. Sunil and his team of AIANA had made a valiant effort to bring the community together in a distant land and that in itself

Once the judges' scores were tallied, Miss Gujarat USA 2012 Grand Sponsor Nilesh Soni of Premji Valji Jewelers gave away the prizes on behalf of the famed Jewelers. Other dignitaries presenting awards were His Majesty Yuvraj Madhantasinh Jadeja and his wife along with Bollywood Actor Sharman Joshi vehicles and recalled their days in Gujarat. Dr. Krunal Raval, a doctor from Ahmedabad, who recently migrated to the US, while riding on the chhakda said "though I have never driven a chhakda at least I got an opportunity to sit in the driving seat of the chhakda here. I felt as if I was driving on Drive-in Road in Ahmedabad. The "pols" of Ahmedabad that were meant to showcase the life inside a "pol" were dull and drab with some old stairs, vintage doors brought from Gujarat and attached to the walls giving an impression of a "pol" and some streets named after them. Suchitaben Mehta who had lived most part of her life in a `pol' commented, "It is

was laudable given the fact that he had to fight the various local agencies to put up the show of this magnitude and bring so many Gujaratis under one roof. "I felt as if I repaid a small bit to Gujarat and am proud to do all that I can to upkeep the pride of Gujarat," Sunil said at the end of the 3-day event. Miss Gujarat USA 2012 Asian Media USA adds: Shradha Amin from New Jersey was chosen as Miss Gujarat USA 2012 during the World Gujarati Conference 2012, Chaalo Gujarat. First Runner Up was Meera Thakrar and Second Runner Up Ekta Khetia.

Miss Gujarat USA 2012 pageant was an undeniable success at this year's Chaalo Gujarat. Featuring eight young Gujarati girls from all across America, this pageant served as a means to incorporate the next generation's beauty, talent and intelligence into the World Gujarati Conference. While adding a touch of glamour and youthfulness to Chaalo Gujarat, this beauty pageant managed to capture the audience in several unique and unexpected ways. Once the judges' scores were tallied, Miss Gujarat USA 2012 Grand Sponsor Nilesh Soni of Premji Valji Jewelers gave away the prizes on behalf of the famed Jewelers. Other dignitaries presenting awards were His Majesty Yuvraj Madhantasinh Jadeja and his wife along with Bollywood Actor Sharman Joshi. Receiving one gram gold coins were Best Hair- Shradha Amin, Beautiful Smile - Meera Thakrar, Most Photogenic - Shailee Shah, Miss Gujarati Pride - Tarini Shah and Fan Favorite - Zeel Patel. Second Runner up Ekta Khetia, won a $500 voucher from Premji Valji Jewelers. First Runner Up Meera Thakrar, won $1500 voucher and crown from Premji Valji Jewelers. Winner Shradha Amin won a voucher for $3500, along with a crown from Premji Valji. Shradha was also called onstage by Air India officials on Day Three of Chaalo Gujarat, to present a free ticket to India to an audience member, after which she herself was presented a free ticket for winning Miss Gujarat USA 2012. The pageant was a wonderful addition to the event, made even better by a stunning visual display and an amazing audience who encouraged and supported the new generation of Gujarati woman on this grand platform.

NAFIA convention in Chicago next month Cont’d from page 13

Other common issues relate to double taxation that Indian Americans face investing in India with IRS and the Indian government, immigration, health care, job discrimination, etc. He said that efforts are afoot to have expert tax attorneys here and back home India addressing a tax and Investment seminar at the conference which is also expected to be attended by bankers and government officials. Vandana Jhingan, a co-con-

vener, said that "we will be inviting a number of elected officials in the State including Congressmen, Senators, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn and Mayors." She said that the Indian Minister for Overseas Affairs Vyalar Ravi, is likely to attend the Convention besides a number of State level officials and ministers from India Sohan Joshi added that Bollywood celebrity Rekha is most likely to attend and so also Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Ghelot. "We will leave no stone

He observed that all round efforts will be made to get all Indian associations and groups to get involved in the Convention as the main theme is "Unity among Indian Americans"

unturned to make this event a grand success unlike the one that was held a decade ago," he said. Kantilal Patel, a Trustee and a former president of FIA is also a Co- Convener. He observed that all round efforts will be made to get all Indian associations and groups to get involved in the Convention as the main theme is "Unity among Indian Americans." He mentioned "a breakaway FIA group would be approached to foster unity in our community."

The NFIA Executive Committee consists of President, Lal K Motwani, Executive Vice President Anil Yadav, Vice Presidents M. Anirudhan, Ashok Madan, Kirit K.Patel, Secretary Sachin Amin, Joint Secretary Satish Misra, and Treasurer Chandrakant K Patel. Directors-At-Large Ajoy K Dube, Niranjan Patel, Olahan Poulose, Rajeshwar Prasad, Harihar Singh, Lavanya Reddy, Gulshan Bajaj. Executive Directors are Joydeb Roy and Sudip Gorakshakar.


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Mary tells you to be happy, no matter what! ASHWIN PATEL India Post News Service

ST LOUIS: The Brahma Kumaris world spiritual organization organized a program entitled 'Being Happy No Matter What' at the Hindu Temple of St. Louis on Saturday, August 18. The keynote speaker was Mary Friedland of Chicago who was introduced by Dr Naidu of Hindu Temple St. Louis. The event was attended by over 125 members. Mary Friedland has practiced Raja Yoga meditation with the Brahma Kumaris since 1987. She enjoys experimenting with the principles and methods of Raja Yoga meditation to achieve higher levels of clarity and freedom in her life. Professionally, she has worked in the field of education as a classroom teacher, corporate trainer, textbook editor and yoga instructor. She has a BA in Psychology from the University of Illinois and an MA in Special Education from Northeastern Illinois University. She currently resides at the Brahma Kumaris Meditation Center in Chicago and teaches medi-

tation and courses in practical spirituality throughout the United States. She spoke on how the nourishment of happiness can change a person from weak into powerful, make difficult things easy and

Mary Friedland

heavy things light. Remaining happy is a great act of charity and no matter what happens, our happiness should not be lost. After the talk Prasad was served.

Global Punjabi Milaap to salute Bulleh Shah THAKAR BASATI

CHICAGO: The fifth Global Punjabi Milaap will be held on Saturday, September 15 at Des Plaines Theater in Des Plaines from 1pm to 5pm. This year the theme is Baba Bulleh Shah and his Sufi poetry. Bulleh Shah was born in 1680 in a small village of Uch, Bahawalpur, Punjab, now in Pakistan. Some of his forebears were migrants from Uzbekistan. He received his early education in Pandoke and higher education in Kasur. His spiritual teacher was Sufi Shah Inayat Qadiri. Bulleh Shah practiced the Sufi tradition of Punjabi poetry established by poets like Shah Hussain, Sultan Bahu and Shah Sharaf. He was a contemporary of Sindhi Sufi poet Shah Abdul Latif Bhatai, Waris Shah and Sachal Surmust. His verses are called Kafis, a style of poetry in Punjabi, Sindhi and Saraiki which was also used by Sikh gurus. Bulleh Shah's message of peace was so strong that it was sung by street singers as well as renowned Sufi singers. Some known names that enjoyed singing his poetry are the late Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan,

Pathaney Khan, Abida Parveen, Wadalli Brothers, and Hans Raj Hans. Rabbi Shergill turned his Kafi "Bulla Ki Jaana Mein Kaun" into Rock fusion. It has sort of

Bulleh Shah's message of peace was so strong that it was sung by street singers as well as renowned Sufi singers. Some known names that enjoyed singing his poetry are the late Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Pathaney Khan, Abida Parveen, Wadalli Brothers, and Hans Raj Hans become a test for singers - if you want to be famous, you better know how to sing Bullah. Even Bollywood has used many of his Kafis in hit movies. Among those who will speak on various aspects of Baba Bulleh

Shah's poetry are Prof. Jagindar Singh Ramdev, Dr. Javed Bhatty, Dr. Riaz Baber, Sajid Chaudhry, Dr Zafar Malik, Dr. Sultan Akbar Hayat, Dr. Nabeela Rasheed and Dr. Tahir

Baba Bulleh Shah

Rohail. A play will depict the life that Bullah had to go through. Milaap brings the people of Punjab together who were affected by the partition of 1947. Entry is free. Plenty of free street and city garage parking.

West Lafayette to get a Hindu temple SURI SWAMY

CHICAGO: Many an Indian student at Purdue University and a number of Indian residents in West Lafayette expressed deep satisfaction on learning that their dream of having a place of worship in their town has inched to reality with Bharatiya Temple & Cultural Center of Greater Lafayette (BTCCGL) announcing the establishment of a temple in West Lafayette BTCC has recently finalized a deal with a

In the absence of a formal place for worship, devotees were congregating at private residences or were renting halls. The building which housed Northview Christian Life Church will be renovated and refashioned to become a Hindu temple local church authority to buy out Northview Christian Life Church. It would renovate it into a full fledged temple where regular puja, prayer and rituals would take place. The BTCC management headed by Umesh Patel and Jagdish Patel agreed to a buy out the building from Lafayette Savings Bank for $415,000.

Building which would turn into temple

The move comes about nine months after the conception of Bharatiya Temple and Cultural Center of Greater Lafayette.The organization has about 100 members. In the absence of a formal place for worship, devotees were congregating at private residences or were renting halls. The building which housed Northview Christian Life Church will be renovated and refashioned to become a Hindu temple. Besides worship services, this temple would also hold community events and

classes and would also serve as a cultural center. It hopes to organize at least one religious function each month. Umesh Patel hopes the group forges a bond with Purdue students." We want to connect the Purdue Indian community with the local Indian community," he said. "There's a lot of talent there, and we want to support the students." While it may have been a long time coming, Jagdish Patel said the path to buying the building happened quickly. Umesh Patel and Jagdish Patel are President and Trea-

surer respectively of BTCCGL. Award-winning city West Lafayette, formed in 1888 and most densely populated in Indiana, has been named as "Sixth Most Educated Small Town" in USA and top 10 "Brainiest Places to Retire". Home to Purdue University, prominent people associated with it include baseball players Bob Friend and Erik Sabel, actress Anissa Jones, football player Chike Okeafor, bridge champion Eric Rodwell and songwriter Tom Kelly. John R. Dennis is the Mayor.


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Indian American Hindus protest before Consulate NARAIN KATARIA

NEW YORK: A protest by 100 strong Indian American Hindus was organized by Indian American Intellectuals Forum in New York September 2 near Indian Consulate to express their repugnance and revulsion against "burning of Hindu villages by Bangladeshi

The unique feature of this protest was that it was supported by non-Hindu American groups such as "Stop Islamization of America" of Pamela Geller, "Human Rights Coalition Against Radical Islam" of Dr. Marvin Belsky, "The United West" of Mr. Stuard Kaufman, LogansWarning@hotmail.com and several other groups Muslims in collusion with Muslims from Assam and West Bengal and making thousands of Hindus (Bodos) refugees in their own country." The protesters said that India is in danger. After Kashmir, Radical Islam is taking over Assam in the North East. Jihad is spreading

far and wide. The protesters expressed their abhorrence at the inaction and apathy on the part of Government of India in handling the riots in Mumbai by 50,000 Muslims, who, armed with petrol cans and plastic bottles, hockey sticks, iron rods, damaged the police vans, stole their guns and ammunition, injured more than 50 policemen, molested the policewomen, burnt the city's transport system, smashed journalists' TV cameras, vandalized War Memorial and held the entire Mumbai City to ransom, in broad day light.

The protesters held responsible the ruling Congress Government of India for not taking stern action against Kashmiri Muslim militants who fought pitched battles with India's security forces in the month of Ramadan, chopped of one Hindu teacher's hand in Rajasthan, killed one Hindu boy in Kerala, attacked TV journalists in Lucknow, did not allow Hindus to celebrate the birthday of Lord Krishna (Janamashthami) in Ranchi, and in cooperation with Pakistani Muslims sent thousands of SMS messages to North East residents in Bengaluru, Pune, and

Hyderabad and threatened them to leave these cities otherwise they would be killed. Instead of punishing the perpetrators of the above mentioned crimes, the Congress Government banned Hindu websites, Facebook and Twitter. The Protesters also blamed the Congress Party of Sonia Gandhi for taking income from Hindu temples and giving it to Muslims to build mosques, run Madrassas and go to Mecca for Haj. Every month 20-25 Hindu girls are abducted by Muslims, forcibly converted to Islam and married to

Muslim men. The Congress Government is doing nothing to ameliorate the miserable plight of these unfortunate girls. Half a million Kashmiri Hindus have been ethnically cleansed from the Kashmir Valley, but the Government of India is taking no action to resettle them back in the Valley. Infiltration by Bangladeshi Muslims tantamounts to an invasion of India by foreigners sponsored by Congress Party, Communist Party and supported by Jihadists in Assam and West Bengal. The aim of this insidious design is to keep the Congress in power and help Muslims to Islamize India. The protest was supported by Mr. Gaurang Vaishanav of Vishwa Hindu Parishad of America, Mr. Satya Dosapati of Hindu Human Rights Watch, Dr. Kumar Arun of India Heritage Foundation, Lansing, Michigan and Panun Kashmir International. The unique feature of this protest was that it was supported by non-Hindu American groups such as "Stop Islamization of America" of Pamela Geller, "Human Rights Coalition Against Radical Islam" of Dr. Marvin Belsky, "The United West" of Mr. Stuard Kaufman, LogansWarning@hotmail.com and several other groups. A copy of the memorandum addressed to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was sent by email to the Consul General of India.

Congress activists stage colorful protest in NYC India Post News Service

NEW YORK: As New Yorkers prepared for a relaxed Sunday in Central Park, a group of young activists from New Jersey and New York staged a colorful demonstration near the office of the Indian Consulate-General in New York. The demonstrators were holding banners and posters in support of the Indian Government led by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and other leaders of India's Congress Party. The Congress leaders led by Juned Qazi and supported by Atma Singh, Zinda Singh and Karanjit Dhaliwal gathered on the side walk where Fifth Avenue and 64th Street merged, a spot half a block away from the Indian Consulate office. Displaying banners of Congress party and its secular messages they chanted slogans in favor of Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Their fellow

protestors were holding Indian flags. The demonstrators began assembling at the sidewalk around noon when New Yorkers were heading towards the Central Part

for a lazy Sunday. Many stopped to take snaps of Indian activists holding placards. Not far from the pro-Congress protestors stood a group of anti-Congress demonstrators who were shouting slo-

gans against the Congress Government of India, which they claimed, was supporting radical Islam and promoting Jihad in India. The anti-Congress protesters

were led by pro-Hindu activist Narayan Kataria, who blamed India's ruling Congress party for supporting Islamist infiltrators in North East India. In response, the Congress supporters blamed Kartaria for spoiling the name of India in USA. "These people have no right to protest against Congress because they divide the country on religious lines", said Atma Singh. "India's leadership is secular and it is keeping the country united." The young activists came from different parts of New York and New Jersey. Challenging the contention of anti-Congress demonstrations they put the blame of violence in India on pro-Hindu parties and Vishwa Hindu Parishad. Chanting slogans like 'Attack VHP and RSS', murderers of peace and Gandhi, the young activists said that these parties were dividing the country on religious grounds. Cont’d on page 19


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INOC rejects VHP/RSS attacks on Congress India Post News Service

NEW YORK: Indian National Overseas Congress (I), USA has rejected allegations made at the demonstration recently held against the Congress Government in front of the Indian Consulate in New York. George Abraham, President of INOC (I), USA, said in a statement, "RSS/VHP attack on the Congress Party is a desperate attempt to shore up their increasingly flailing fortune in India and abroad. They do not seem to represent any redeeming value other than prejudice and hatred and that have no place in a civilized society." He said that, "In fact, the Congress Gov-

"Our community in USA is very much part of the progressive politics in USA and we need to be consistent in supporting the same policies back in India. There is an urgent need to get away from the politics of hatred and division and promote ideas that unite us all. Democracy is not all about just majoritarian rule but rather a system that allows a diverse and vigorous civil society, respects minority rights and minority opinions while being anchored in the rule of law� ernment reaches out and embraces all Indian brothers and sisters without discrimination and true to its rules and principles, continuously fights for a better life and standard of living for every citizen of India. Congress policies have always been anchored in a vision of an economically prosperous, socially just, politically united and culturally harmonious India. "INOC (I) stretches out its hand and welcomes everyone to join hands in a spirit of cooperation to breed peace and harmony and raise the economic and social well-being of all Indians. We should never forget

Hindi lovers to celebrate Hindi Diwas HARISH RAO

CHICAGO: A Chicago based no profit body of people of Indian origin Hindi Lovers Club has slated a fun-filled night on Sunday September 16 at Indo-American Center from 5 pm onwards. Among the highlights of the program will be dance performances, singing, poetry recitals, and music honoring Hindi language.

all those who gave their lives for our Independence and all those who continue to fight to preserve our freedom. "Our community in USA is very much part of the progressive politics in USA and we need to be consistent in supporting the same policies back in India. There is an urgent need to get away from the politics of hatred and division and promote ideas that unite us all. Democracy is not all about just majoritarian rule but rather a system that allows a diverse and vigorous civil society, respects minority rights and minority opinions while being anchored in the rule of law.

"Our collective strength lies in the individual strength of each Indian living in India and abroad. The Congress Party embraces all Indians, cutting across the divide of caste, class, creed or language. Unity is our shared legacy and an enduring strength of India. It is our collective duty to strengthen our democracy built and fostered by Jawaharlal Nehru, Maulana Azad, Sardar Vallabhai Patel, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Gobind Ballabh Pant, Babu Jagjiwan Ram, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi. Smt. Sonia Gandhi, the Chairperson of UPA has steadfastly countered the rise of bigotry and communal forces.

"Many important bills, including those relating to addressing of corruption, are held up in the Parliament due to the intransigence and lack of cooperation from the opposition. Even the current obstacles created in the name of "Coal" issue are an improper impediment to due process. "INOC (I) knows that without regard to political affiliation, we all work tirelessly to realize the ideals on which India was built. False propaganda only undermines our collective strength and resolve. So let us move forward - we owe it to the people of India," he concluded.


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Tough contests mark Punjabi Sports Festival SURENDRA ULLAL

CHICAGO: Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago (PCS) organized its 18th annual Sports Festival recently at Falcon Park Recreation Center, in Palatine, Illinois. State of Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford and past Mayor of Palatine IL Rita Mullins inaugurated this sports festival after a colorful ribbon cutting ceremony in the presence of more than 250 enthusiastic athletes and spectators. The tournament started with a prayer and the US national anthem. Falcon Park District, Mayor Rita Mullins and Treasurer Rutherford were honored with plaques by the PCS officials. Rajinder Singh Mago emceed the event. The sports festival was sponsored by Balwinder Girn and Dr. Amarjit Singh. Twenty one Basketball and Vol-

PCS 2012 Sport Festival organizers and participants

Cincinnati Ohio competed in the tournament for the PCS Chicago championship trophies and cash awards.

state-of-the-art air-conditioned facilities at Falcon Park in Palatine, IL. The winner of PCS Chicago

ball runners-up trophy and cash prize of $250 went to the "Chicago Untouchables." No team could touch them until "No Respect"

The PCS Chicago Volleyball Championship Cup and the cash prize of $500 was won by "Shaheed Bhagat Singh Club" team, and the volleyball runners-up trophy and a cash prize of $250 went to "Saint Louis Sikhs" team Basketball and Volleyball winners with PCS officials

leyball qualified teams hailing from Chicago and suburbs, Milwaukee Wisconsin, Saint Louis MO, and

This all day Basketball and Volleyball tournament was held indoors in the courts of the new

Basketball Championship Cup and the cash prize of $500 was the team named "No Respect." The basket-

showed up and they lost only by a score of 54 to 55 points in a very tough competition. The "Brown

Mambas" basketball team, last year's PCS champions, came in third. The PCS Chicago Volleyball Championship Cup and the cash prize of $500 was won by "Shaheed Bhagat Singh Club" team, and the volleyball runners-up trophy and a cash prize of $250 went to "Saint Louis Sikhs" team. The "Milwaukee Club" volleyball team came in third. All the individual players of the winners and the runners-up teams of each sport were also awarded trophies. All the participating athletes and spectators were served pizza, soft drinks, and tea for lunch and bottled water all day. The event was free and open to all. The Punjabi Cultural Society of Chicago is a not-for-profit community service organization devoted to promoting healthy life style and sports, education, good citizenship, Punjabi culture, language, and performing arts, in the metropolitan Chicago area.

Interfaith meet during ‘Eid al-Fitr’ celebrations India Post News Service

NEVADA: A celebration of Eid in Nevada turned out to be an interfaith meet with representatives of others faiths like Hindu and Christians being invited and honored. In a remarkable interfaith ges-

nity (NNMC) Center, Rajan Zed, President of Universal Society of Hinduism, stressed that all religions should work together for a just and peaceful world. Dialogue would bring us mutual enrichment, he added. Zed expressed warmest greetings on the Eid festival wishing

Prayers from Quran (the scripture of Islam) were read and NNMC President Dr. Sherif A. Elfass listed various projects and achievements of NNMC and distributed the awards ture, Muslims welcomed Hindu leader Rajan Zed to their "Eid alFitr" celebrations in Sparks, Nevada. Speaking on the occasion at Northern Nevada Muslim Commu-

that it brought joy, happiness and cheer to all the Muslims. American Muslims of Bangladeshi, Syrian, Somalian, Pakistani, Ethiopian, Jordanian, India, Moroccan, Egyptian, Pales-

Interfaith gathering during Eid celebrations in Sparks, Nevada

tinian, Saudi Arabian, etc., origins came to "Eid al-Fitr" celebrations in their ethnic best dresses to a sumptuous dinner which included chicken and other meat dishes, biryani and various other rice formations, vegetables, lentils, sweet vermicelli, kheer, puddings, etc.

Prayers from Quran (the scripture of Islam) were read and NNMC President Dr. Sherif A. Elfass listed various projects and achievements of NNMC and distributed the awards. Sparks Mayor Geno R. Martini, Sparks Police Chief Steve Keefer and Imam

Abdelwahed Awad also spoke. According to an estimate, there are about 2,000 Muslim families in northern Nevada of about two dozen national origins, with Bangladesh having the highest numbers. NNMC was launched in 1980.


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Indians resent racist ad from Australia India Post News Service

CHICAGO: A group of Indian Americans headed by Rajan Zed (Nevada), Madhu Patel (Chicago). Sudhir Vyas (New Jersey), Vinod Patel (Houston) and Hemant Vakharia (Milwaukee) have expressed resentment at a recent advertisement appearing on Gumtree website that seeks help of cleaners for Coles Supermarket but expressly puts a stop on Indians applying for it. Coles is a Supermarket chain in Australia. The advertisement seeks "Positions available for experienced cleaners in supermarket" at a Coles Supermarket in Hobart, but added "Store requires no Indians". Launched in 1914, Coles is said to be Australia's second-biggest chain with over 13 million weekly customers and over 750 stores. Ian McLeod is Managing Director of Coles. Indian Americans here are highly disturbed that such racist

Congress activists stage colorful protest in NYC Cont’d from page 16

Qazi, a well known supporter of Digvijay Singh, the former Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh and a senior Congress leader, shouted slogans in favor of secular and pluralistic India. He claimed that Congress party led by Sonia Gandhi was the true secular party that has brought prosperity in India. "Congress symbolized peace and progress and helped to keep India united. On the other hand a number of opposition parties led by pro-Hindu groups such as Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and Vishwa Hindu Parishad, were engaged in dividing the nation and destroying it." Juned Qazi said that Congress was a true secular party in India which ruled for most of the 66 years. It led the country towards prosperity and progress. "It is the duty of every Indian to support Congress which represents secular forces and unity in India", said Qazi. According to Qazi the demonstration gathered strength with the help of enthusiastic support and slogan shouting of fellow activists owing allegiance to Congress, such as, Pankaj Mathur, Rumpi Bindra, Paul Singh, Rahul Dev Singh, Sonia Keer Sodhi, Shaheen Khan, Atul Mathur, Taiyab Poonawala, Jasmitter Singh and Saeed Patel.

attitudes still exist in 21st century Australia, a culturally diverse society. Indians have contributed greatly to the Australian economy, academia and business. They are also called a peace loving and law abiding community by a great number of Australians. It is in this context that an advertisement of this nature is in bad taste. They wanted the Australian government to publicly decry this type of xenophobia and set the record right by taking a non-racist stand, The fear is that if a decisive stand is not taken against this type

"junkyard" and India a "shit hole", thus belittling the entire community. Last year, inappropriate displaying of an image of Hindu goddess Lakshmi on swimwear at a Sydney fashion event and depiction of highly revered Hindu deities Lord Ganesh, Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu in "Ganesh Versus the Third Reich" play in Melbourne caused protests. A report by Australia Human Rights Commission, a statutory organization that reports to the federal Parliament, in the past highlighted "a lack of constitutional

The advertisement seeks "Positions available for experienced cleaners in supermarket" at a Coles Supermarket in Hobart, but added "Store requires no Indians" of public posture, it could be as Madhu Patel of NRI Press Club put it "may well be a forerunner of the shape of things to come." Rajan Zed, President of Universal Society of Hinduism, stressed that anti-racism initiatives were immediately required in Australia. There had been various incidents of racist violence against Indians in the recent past. In 2011, a popular radio host reportedly termed Hindus' holy river Ganga as

protection against racial discrimination in Australia" and talked about "absence of any entrenched guarantee against racial discrimination that would override the law of the Commonwealth." Australia ranks as one of the best places in the world to live. Sixth-largest in the world, this country of kangaroo and koala is known for its natural beauty and has the longest continuous cultural history.

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Washington Post article colored with bias

he Washington Post article denigrating the lifetime achievements of a great leader such as Dr. Manmohan Singh clearly lacks any objectivity and it is colored with certain bias and skewed perspectives. Dr. Manmohan Singh was the Chief Architect of India's new economy. He has taken a centrally planned, inward looking; public sector centered economy and reversed its direction. What he has accomplished is just phenomenal. Actually this dramatic change paints a picture of a man who is some sort of a revolutionary. If India has entered the 21st century, the current Prime Minister has a lot to do with it. Corruption is not limited to any particular political party. It is endemic and cut across all spheres and every cadre. Congress has shown great courage in dealing with corruption even at the highest places whether it is 2G spectrum, Commonwealth Games or Adarsh Society scam where the officials involved either were thrown out of office or in jail or under investigation. The Right To Information Act (RTI) passed by the Congress-led government has become the catalyst in unearthing numerous cases for which Congress has gotten little credit. BJP needs to look in its own

mirror especially in Karnataka and should realize those who live in glass houses should not throw stones. As far as the economic slowdown is concerned, India is till growing at a rate that may be the envy of the western world today. BJP and regional parties need to shoulder a great amount of blame how and when they shot down the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) initiative by Dr. Manmohan Singh that sent a very negative signal to the global investment community by almost saying India is not yet ready as a big time global player. BJP and its allies were trying protecting the middlemen at the expense of the consumer. Are there mistakes made? There may be. Once Dr. Manmohan Singh was quoted as saying "we must have the courage to accept our mistakes'. One rarely witnesses such a person in the political arena today, a person of bravery, integrity and character. Therefore, this article truly does grave injustice to the legacy of a great man who will always be respected for his great vision in changing the Indian economy in a fundamental way. George Abraham, President Indian National Overseas Congress (I), USA

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


Horoscope

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Your Weekly Future by Pandit Parashar

SEPTEMBER 14TH - SEPTEMBER 20TH (November 23 to December 22)

(March 21 to April 20)

D

T

o not stretch your limits and avoid lending money to a friend or extending too much credit or will have hard time recovering it. If appearing for any highly competitive exam this week, chances are you will clear it in first shot. Things will keep improving at work and a small raise or promotion can become a reality this week.

here will be some interesting changes in career. You will be as signed an important task and may be promoted to next level with additional benefits and help. Spouse too will have better luck with everything this week. Some of you may start a new project in partnership with some highly intellectual people.

(April 21 to May 20)

(December 22 to January 19)

N

egotiations will continue to move in right direction but final contract could take little more time to take place. Money wise you will do well and may make some quick money through a stocks transaction. You will be successful in shedding of few pounds with the help of little exercises and change of diet. Just handle tools with care.

S

trong Venus in angle will help you resolve few tricky issues this week. A female will be very helpful. People seeking job will be successful in laying their hands on one. Financially you will continue to grow and even start putting some money aside for rainy days. You will study some very useful material to update knowledge. (January 20 to February 18)

(May 21 to June 20)

Y

ou may have to deal with some hurdles this week. An older family member may not keep well and need to have some tests done. A child may be getting ready to move away for educational purpose. You may travel to another town to attend a social event with family this weekend. Do not hesitate to buy few lottery tickets.

Y

ou will be making couple of wise decisions about career this week. Success will be instant. You may go out to the mall and buy some new cloths or perfume for personal use. Check your blood pressure and take medication on time. You may have some special prayers done at your place or visit a holy place with family this weekend.

(February 19 to March 20)

P

(June 21 to July 22)

roperty deal can finalize. People in business will be able to recover major part of past dues. New source of additional income will open up. some You may drop or change your earlier travel plans. A reunion with a close family member will take place in near future. You may buy some nice furniture items for the house.

D

o not allow heart rule over your head and do not let emotions rule when taking any decision about career. Opportunity could require relocation. Letter or mail you send out will get the things done. Very favorable time for those looking for an expansion in the family. You may get rid of some junk piling up dust in the garage.

(July 23 to August 22)

Y

ou will reap rich rewards for all the efforts made recently. Business will pick up all of sudden. You will sign a new contract which will help you financially for a long time to come. There will be some changes at work and you may be moved to another unit. You may successfully resolve a pending issue with a government agency.

(August 23 to September 22)

C

hoice will be hard to make but you will end up taking the right decision. New venture will need little time to turn profitable. Transit of Mars in second for some more time will keep you on the edge as far as the finances are concerned. Bachelors may travel long distance to meet some one introduced to them recently.

(September 23 to October 22)

A

n overseas business trip will be finalized. Getting irritated with people is not going to help, you should stay calm and you will end up getting things done quickly. You may plan an evening with a colleague this weekend. A child not doing so well in the past will be on the right track from now and on and will stay focused. (October 23 to November 22)

Y

ou will be making some very calculated move in career. Gamble will pay off in shape of better money and more relaxed terms. Some money will go towards legal expenses also. You may receive good piece of advice from an experienced person. Customer count will grow and you will help many people with your expertise.

Arbaaz and Malaika, simply made for each other

M

arried for over 14 years, the Munni girl and the man behind Dabangg are one of the most desirable and the hot and happening couple in Bollywood. They have been a support system for each other. From looks to compatibility, they are simply made for each other. Malaika Arora (Oct 23, 1973) is a Scorpion with Death and King of Cups as its corresponding Tarot cards. The King of Cups denotes Malaika as a kind, emotional, creative, gentle, and loving. Arbaaz is lucky to have her as his wife. Her horoscope personality analysis predicts that she is a devoted house wife and a doting mother. She is strong and has a calm personality with a creative approach combined with practical common sense. The Death card predicts the constant possibility of a chance to make good. Her detailed Scorpio horoscope reading says that she is a wonderful life companion. Arbaaz (August 4, 1967) is a Leo with Strength, Sun, and Queen of Wands as its corresponding Tarot cards. As denoted by the Queen of Wands, Arbaaz is strong, passionate, outgoing and independent. He respects whatever she does and gives her space. Personality of Leo horoscope adds that he is a dedicated, loving and a very gentle husband. He is a family man and is always there for them. They have a great mutual understanding and are simply perfect for each other. Their horoscope indicates that Arbaaz and Malaika's relationship is here to stay.

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

925-833-7170

website: www.parashar.com


Tech News Boeing, Airbus project high air traffic growth NEW DELHI: US aircraft manufacturer Boeing has raised its 20year market forecast for sale of passenger planes in India saying the demand for commercial jets will increase more than 4.5 times of the world market by 2031. "India is projected to have highest passenger traffic growth in the world. It will need 1,450 new planes through 2031 worth a total of up to USD 175 billion," said Dinesh A Keskar, Senior Vice President (Sales) while releasing the company's latest "India Current Market Outlook" here. Last year, the company had forecast India would need 1,320 passenger planes worth USD 150 billion until 2030. Cont’d on page 23

India reviewing tax treaty with Mauritius: FM NEW DELHI: The government says it is reviewing the tax treaty with Mauritius to prevent misuse and to strengthen tax information exchange mechanism between the two nations. "Government has proposed to review the India-Mauritius Double Taxation Avoidance Convention (DTAC) bilaterally to incorporate appropriate changes in the DTAC for prevention of treaty abuse and to strengthen the mechanism for exchange of information on tax matter between India and Mauritius," Finance Minister P Chidambaram informed the Lok Sabha in a written reply. -PTI

Internet subscriber base in India may reach 150 mn NEW DELHI: Driven by youth, Internet subscriber base in the country is expected to reach 150 million by the end of this year, says a report. The report by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and IMRB said, "The number of claimed Internet users has seen a growth of 16 per cent over last year. This number is estimated to grow up to 150 million by December 2012." There will be 105 million users in urban India while the rural areas will contribute 45 million subscribers, it added. Claimed users are those who have used Internet at least once in their lifetime while active users have used Internet at least once in the last one month.

TechBiz 21 India Post

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September 14, 2012

Rural India Internet users to reach 45 mn

T

he internet usage in rural India will reach 45 million by December 2012 while the active internet usage will be 38 million, read the I cube report on "Internet in Rural India" by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and IMRB (Indian Market Research Bureau). The survey highlighted that out of the total 118.2 million rural population that was considered, 17.8 million claimed to have used internet at least once in their lifetime (claimed internet users), while 14.7 million users have accessed the internet in the last one month (active internet users)

CAG hauls up ONGC for hiring RIL drilling rig without bidding NEW DELHI: The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has hauled up state-owned oil explorer ONGC for hiring a deep-sea drilling rig from Reliance Industries without calling for competitive bids on ground that are untenable. CAG, in a report table in the Parliament, said ONGC "deviated from the standard tendering procedure and hired a rig viz Dhirubhai Deepwater KG-1 (DDKG-1) from RIL without calling for competitive bids for a period of four years on untenable grounds". ONGC had in May 2009 hired DDKG-1 from RIL for four years ending July 2013 without calling for competitive bids at an operating day rate of USD 495,000 for first 180 days and at USD 510,000 from 181st day onwards. The effective day rate worked out to USD 563,488. CAG said the company in December 2008 projected a requirement of rig capable of drilling in ultra deep water (water depth of 10,000 feet) by December 2010 to meet its work commitment in exploration block it had won under NELP rounds. "On the plea that no ultra deep water rig was available with it before December 2010, the company

(ONGC) hired the rig from RIL," it said in the report for 2010-11 fiscal. The rig, CAG pointed out, was in fact hired by RIL from Deepwater Pacific-1 Inc in October 2007 for a period of five years commencing July 2009 and ending July 2014. "Upon RIL's willingness (in

tain competitive bids before hiring the rig from RIL, CAG said the state-owned firm had in July 2009 projected "a situation of emergency" to acquire an ultra deep water rig by deviating from the standard tendering procedure of competitive bidding. The company drilled seven ultra deep wells using DDKG-1 rig

March 2009) to share the rig with the company (ONGC), the latter obtain the same rig from RIL under a tripartite assignment agreement on the same rates, terms and conditions as were applicable to RIL," it said. Stating that ONGC did not ob-

till December 2010. Of these seven well, three were appraisal wells, drilled to confirm previous finds. "In December 2009, the company (ONGC) itself had expressed its inability to the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas in committing a definite development

plan for these (discovery) wells stating that demonstrable technology implementation analogues were not available in the world in such ultra deep waters. "Hence, in the absence of technology, drilling of these appraisal wells was not crucial to decide their commercial viability by December 2010," the audit said. CAG said the remaining four wells could have been drilled after December 2010 when another rig - Platinum Explorer was scheduled to be mobilized by ONGC. "Moreover, the Government of India had already granted extension of time to the company to drill these well by March/May 2011 under the rig moratorium policy," it added. Listing deviations from standard contractual terms, the official auditor said ONGC agreed to pay standby day rate or daily payments when rig was not operating at the rate of 98 per cent of the operating day rate instead of standard terms and condition obliging it to pay at the rate of no more than 95 per cent. "As a result, it had to make extra payment of USD 1,802,005 (Rs 8.11 crore) during July 2009 to October 2011," it said. -PTI

CAG raps HAL for Rs 43 crore excess payment NEW DELHI: CAG has pulled up Defense PSU Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for excess payment of Rs 43 crore as incentives to its management in 200910 by adopting an "illogical" method of calculating the profits of the company. In its report tabled in Parliament, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) said HAL's Profit Before Tax (PBT) of Rs 2,688 crore for 2009-10 included income from interests received by the company from the advance payments made by the Defense Ministry. "Company's PBT of Rs 2,688 crore included interest income of Rs

1,525.60 crore earned on short-term deposits of funds received mainly as advances from the Defense Ministry for various projects entrusted to the company," the report said.

by the Ministry is clearly disproportionate to the actual sales turnover of the company. "It is illogical to reckon such income as one arising from the

The report said if "the PBT had been arrived at only from income related to the core activities of the company, the Performance Related Pay (PRP) payable would have been only Rs 58.09 crore instead of the Rs 101.27 paid finally to the executives" The government auditor said the interest income made from advance payment of Rs 35,000 crore

normal business and core activities of the company," it said. The report said if "the PBT had

been arrived at only from income related to the core activities of the company, the Performance Related Pay (PRP) payable would have been only Rs 58.09 crore instead of the Rs 101.27 paid finally to the executives." It said the company was not including the income from interests for computing the PRP in 2007-08 and 2008-09. It also termed as "unacceptable" the Defense Ministry and HAL's reply that interest income qualified for PRP as it was from prudent working capital management of funds received through contractual terms of sale.-PTI


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GAIL provided Rs 246 cr of undue benefit NEW DELHI: The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has pulled up gas utility GAIL India for giving over Rs 246 crore of undue benefit to private power producers by supplying natural gas at subsidized rates. CAG also hauled up the stateowned firm for its failure to recover Rs 29.78 crore from Reliance Industries in penalties for over-drawing gas for one month. GAIL was also criticized for failure to check subsidized gas being used by fertilizer companies for manufacturing non-fertilizer products. The official auditor, in its report tabled in Parliament, said GAIL supplied natural gas at subsidized

rates - in deviation of the Oil Ministry's directives - to ineligible consumers generating and supplying electricity to their consumers at commercial rates. The APM or government administered gas was meant only for power companies generating electricity for supply to the Grid for distribution through public utilities. GAIL supplying APM gas to power generating companies which supplied to consumers at commercial rates in 2006 "led to under recovery of Rs 246.16 crore in Gas Pool Account, undue benefit to such producers to that extent and depriving eligible consumers of subsidized/APM gas,"

CAG said in the report for the fiscal 2010-11. CAG said GAIL also failed to evolve a suitable system to ascertain the quantity of natural gas utilized by fertilizer companies for manufacturing non-fertilizer products and its billing at market price instead of subsidized price. "This led to non-implementation of Ministry's directives and consequent substantial under recovery in Gas Pool Account besides extra avoidable burden on Government subsidy towards fertilizer production," the auditor's report stated. The gas used for non-fertilizer products was to be charged at market price from January 1, 2009. CAG said non-implementation of directives to realize market price for gas used for manufacturing non-fertilizer products resulted in loss of Rs 40.48 crore in respect of supplies made to Trombay unit of Rashtriya Fertilizer and Chemicals Ltd (RCF) between January 2009 and October 2009. "Considering all the units of RCF, other fertilizer companies and the period prior to January 2009, there was considerable revenue foregone by GAIL as well as excess payment of fertilizer subsidy

by the government," it said. Stating that there was laxity on the part of GAIL in ascertaining the usage of gas in non-fertilizer products, CAG said there was also lack of effective coordination be-

RIL over drew gas in July and August 2008. "While RIL paid the charges levied by GAIL at 120 per cent of the highest priced gas for the month of July 2008, it refused to pay the over drawal charges for the month of August 2008 amounting to Rs 29.78 crore tween the Oil Ministry and the Ministry of Fertilizers and Chemicals in resolving the issue. It added, "This situation led to under recovery in the Gas Pool Account as well as excess payment of subsidy on fertilizer production by the Government, for the period from July 2005 to Decem-

ber 2008. "Further, for the period from January 2009 onwards, the chances of sub-optimal recovery in Gas Pool Account and excess payment of the Government subsidy on fertilizer production could not be ruled out in absence of any mechanism to test verify by GAIL of the gas usage as self certified by the fertilizer companies." CAG also said GAIL failed to make effective a regular clause in gas supply agreement with RIL for recovery of charges levied for over-drawal of gas beyond the allocated quantity. RIL over drew gas in July and August 2008. "While RIL paid the charges levied by GAIL at 120 per cent of the highest priced gas for the month of July 2008, it refused to pay the over drawal charges for the month of August 2008 amounting to Rs 29.78 crore contending there was no mention of daily quantity allotment in the gas supply agreement," it said. "The fact remains that although a system did exist for levy and recovery of over-drawal charges, the same was not implemented effectively in the above case resulting in non- recovery of Rs 29.78 crore," CAG added. -PTI

Essar defends acquisition of Navabharat Power NEW DELHI: Ruias-owned Essar Power has said its acquisition of Navabharat Power Pvt Ltd (NPPL) - one of the five companies raided by the CBI in connection with the coal block allocation scam - was "transparent" and NPPL was never its front company. Stating that it had paid Rs 230 crore to acquire NPPL in two tranches in 2010 and 2011, three years after the company was allocated two coal mines in Odisha,

Essar Power said it had "no dealing with either of the original promoters until this transaction". Essar Power "categorically denied" allegations that Navabharat was its 'front' company and asserted the deal was "legitimate". "Following the acquisition, Essar Power has invested more than Rs 500 crore in developing the project and has also achieved financial closure, with ICICI Bank having underwritten debt financing of more than

Rs 3,720 crore," the company said in a statement. "The project is currently awaiting certain government approvals," it added. In a separate statement, Navabharat Group said it had sold its 50 per cent in NPPL to Essar Power "in a transparent and diligent manner and full disclosures were made to the stock exchanges on July 13, 2010 and April 20, 2011". The sale, it said, followed Malaxmi Group - the other promoter in NPPL, selling its stake to Essar Power "in total disregard to the interest of the other investor" (Nava Bharat Group). "...equity divestment (50 per cent in NPPL) was due to exigencies beyond the controls of the Nava Bharat Group and was in the best interest of its shareholders," the Hyderabad-based firm said. The "active management" of NPPL, including the pursuit of the coal block at the relevant time, was with Malaxmi Group-appointed Managing Director, it added. Navabharat Power Pvt Ltd (NPPL), promoted originally by Hyderabad-based businessman P Trivikram Prasad and ex-CEO of Lanco Power, Y Harish Chandra Prasad, was allocated two coal blocks - Rampia and dip side of Rampia in Odisha - on January 17, 2008. In June, 2006, it had signed an MoU with Odisha government for developing a 1050 MW mega power project in the state. -PTI


TechBiz Post

September 14, 2012

India Post

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India's $1 mn fund for SE Asia projects NEW DELHI: India has announced a revolving fund with an annual contribution of USD 1 million for short gestation projects in Cambodia, Lao, Myanmar and Vietnam as part of its efforts to reinvigorate its ties with the four

Ganga. A joint statement released at the end of the meeting said the Ministers recognized the need for short gestation projects that could directly benefit local communities, with results that are immediate and visible. The Ministers felt these would give a fresh impetus to cooperation under MGC. "In this context, the Ministers welcomed the announcement by India on the establishment of the India-CLMV Quick Impact Projects (QIP) Revolving Fund with an annual contribution of USD 1 million," the statement said. The meeting was attended by Cambodia's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Hor Namhong, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lao PDR Thongloun Sisoulith, External Affairs Minister SM Krishna along with other leaders at the 6th Mekong-Ganga Cooperation Meeting in New Delhi Myanmar's Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs U Maung ASEAN countries. ship to new areas of collaboration Vientiane, Lao PDR, in 2000 by In- Myint, Thailand's Vice Minister for The sixth Mekong-Ganga Co- and has the potential to become a dia and the five countries from Foreign Affairs Jullapong operation (MGC) Ministerial "powerful catalyst" for socio-eco- Mekong region to build coopera- Nonsrichai and Vietnam's Vice Meeting was held here and was nomic development in the region. tion in the region defined by two Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham attended by leaders of delegation "Our unanimous decision to rivers - the Mekong and the Quang Vinh. -PTI from the five countries of Mekong region, namely Cambodia, Lao, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam. External Affairs Minister S M Krishna, who chaired the meeting, said the forum will expand partner-

henceforth meet on an annual basis is indicative of our recognition of the tremendous potential for future cooperation in this forum," Krishna said. The Mekong-Ganga Cooperation initiative was launched in

Boeing, Airbus project high air traffic growth in India Cont’d from page 21

In a similar projection, Boeing's rival Airbus said in its 'Global Market Outlook' that "in value terms, the single biggest market (for new aircraft) is China followed by the US, the UAE and India." The report was released at Airbus headquarters in France. At a press conference here, the Boeing official said India would need 1,201 single aisle planes - like next generation Boeing 737 and new 737 MAX, worth USD 114 billion, 234 twin aisle aircraft worth USD 61 billion and 15 regional jets at USD 0.5 billion. Despite Boeing being the leader in wide-body long-haul fleet segment in India, Keskar said the country will not be ordering larger planes like Boeing 747s and 777s, indicating that domestic flying would grow substantially in the country in the near future. Though Indian carriers were improving their financial performance by raising yields through better capacity management, Keskar said "slowing of GDP growth, fuel prices and a weak Rupee could affect profitability and growth in near term." -PTI


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JS BEDI

P

rem Souri Kishore stirs up memories and spices up her Indian food book with extravagant servings of humor, history, culture and memory. India: A Culinary Journey is written by the Los Angeles author, originally from Chennai and Bangalore in myriad, informative and engaging ways. This is her second book. The first book - India History

www.indiapost.com

September 14, 2012

FLAVORFUL INDIA Prem Kishore's culinary journey

and Culture was published four years ago by the same publishers. Prem Kishore opens up doors and windows of India's kitchens across the country as she enters

the world of pickle making, samples bhelpuri from street vendors, crunches on murukus on railway journeys, and drifts on the Dal Lake nibbling on fried

Book Review "Prem Souri Kishore has written something much more than a cookbook. This is a love letter to India, full of loving descriptions of food, and fond memories of the kitchens of her mother and grandmother where she was first initiated into the world of food� lotus stems, while feasting on Mughlai biryanis in Hyderabad and eating a mango sitting atop a tree in Bangalore. The narrative is peppered with stories of food rituals, food myths, the place of food in sacred worship, food etiquette, and is layered with brilliant imagery of India's diverse landscapes. Cont’d on page 25


September 14, 2012

India Post

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Moustached Lord Krishna Flavorful India locale of Hampi so much, that he requested his good friend and 'Rowdy' director Prabhudeva to shoot the extra scenes at the idyllic spot for the song Mere Nishaan.

India Post News Service

A

kshay Kumar provided some off-camera comedy capers recently when he was involved in a curious mix-up on the set of his new film OMG Oh My God. Akshay, who stars as a modern-day Lord Krishna in the

film, as well as having produced the project, was shooting a beautiful and poignant sequence for a song entitled Mere Nishaan from the film OMG Oh My God in the same location of Hampi, where he had just completed his blockbuster film Rowdy Rathore. Akshay loved the picturesque

As filming got underway, and Akshay transformed into his character of Lord Krishna complete with rousing emotion and full-costume, he forgot one small, vital detail As filming got underway, and Akshay transformed into his character of Lord Krishna complete with rousing emotion and full-costume, he forgot one small, vital detail - that he was still wearing his famed moustache from Rowdy Rathore! Cont’d on page 26

AMERICAN KORN: (From left) Members of American Rock Band KORN James Shaffer, Ray Luzier and Jonathan Davis during a press conference in New Delhi

Cont’d from page 24

One hundred signature recipes ranging from the simple to the detailed illustrate the unending gastronomical delights of Indian cuisine extending from the intense Kashmiri Gustaba (lamb koftas) to Kerala's Meen Varatharcha (fish in coconut gravy) and Maharashtra's Dahi Aloo (potatoes simmered in curd). But the book is more than an assembly line of teaspoons, ounces and ingredients. She writes of the surge of invaders, traders and explorers in the turbulent history of India, of the melding of food cultures and the changes in history and traditions of Indian cooking. As you embrace her austere grandmother in the smoky kitchen, her large assortment of aunts, cousins, friends and community who delight in communal cooking, feastings and stories - you savor her early years in India learning the intricacies of cooking, traveling through diverse states of the county collecting recipes and sharing reminiscences of foods. The book comes alive and resonates with anyone who has eaten, cooked or is curious about Indian foods. This is a book expertly blending stories and recipes - a fascinating book to cherish. Kishore says, "This book is written with great joy as I wanted to share stories about food. India is the greatest story teller. India with its rich legacy of myriad faiths, rituals, and cultural landscapes, celebrations and festivals, that are unique to each region, brims with food adventures and stories. Food connects, and when shared, inspires kinship, and trust."

American fiction writer, essayist Gloria Whelan writes in her review of the book, "Prem Souri Kishore has written something much more than a cookbook. This is a love letter to India, full of loving descriptions of food, and fond memories of the kitchens of her mother and grandmother where she was first initiated into the world of food. Food is truly seen as a gift from the gods, and her description of the eating of a mango with the juices dripping down her naked body is pure sen-

India is the greatest story teller. India with its rich legacy of myriad faiths, rituals, and cultural landscapes, celebrations and festivals, that are unique to each region, brims with food adventures and stories sual poetry. Traditions and customs are described, as are spices and exotic ingredients. Different parts of India are given their own story. The Indian kitchen is explored. There are many unique as well as traditional recipes. It would be a great mistake to venture into the world of Indian cooking without taking Kishore by the hand as your guide." INDIA A CULINARY JOURNEY (Hippocrene Publishing, New York) is sold on Amazon and in bookstores.


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September 14, 2012 www.indiapost.com

Kareena Kapoor pens tell-all style book NEW DELHI: Glamorous leading Bollywood actress Kareena Kapoor is set to reveal her fashion and beauty secrets in a new book releasing this December. In "Style Diary of a Bollywood Diva," scheduled to hit stands this year end, Kareena takes readers into her fabulous life giving insights into her style, fitness and beauty, Fondly known as Bebo, the actress writes about her journey from a chubby teenager who accompanied actress and elder sister Karisma on shoots into one of the hottest leading ladies in tinsel town, according to publishers Penguin Books India. Kareena, who will turn 31 later this

month and who had previously written a foreword to her personal dietician Rujuta Diwakar's book, talks about her fitness routine including how she came to ac-

where she is seen sporting uber glamorous gowns and who own her own clothing line also gives tips to replicate her iconic looks from Pooh's sexy red choli

Fondly known as Bebo, the actress writes about her journey from a chubby teenager who accompanied actress and elder sister Karisma on shoots into one of the hottest leading ladies in tinsel town, according to publishers Penguin Books India quire her much talked about "Size Zero" figure in the new book. The actress, who is busy promoting her soon to be released film "Heroine"

and pants in "Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham" and Geet's T-shirt-salwar in "Jab We Met". The book by Kareena is the first to be

launched under the Shobha De imprint of Penguin that includes celebrity memoirs, guides and biographies - with a focus on lifestyle, business, cinema and commercial fiction. The initiative involves noted author Shobhaa De handpicking authors, titles and subjects. Following Kareena many other celebrities from the fashion, film and lifestyle world have been lined up for books under the imprint, according to a source in the publishing house. -PTI

Moustached Lord Krishna Cont’d from page 25

Always a good sport, Akshay recently shared the blooper footage online. He said of it: 'Sharing an exclusive footage with you from the song Mere Nishaan from OMG (Oh My God), which also happens to be my personal favorite. While I was shooting for Rowdy Rathore in Hampi, we decided to shoot some portions of Mere Nishaan as well since we had time. All went well but it was only after the shoot that my director, Prabhudeva and I realized that we'd forgotten to remove the fake moustache!'


September 14, 2012

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28

Datebook

India Post

September 14, 2012

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NEW YORK

NEW JERSEY

Upcoming

Upcoming

ILLINOIS

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA

Upcoming

Upcoming

Sat Sept 15

Sat Sept 15

• Raaga Rendezvous (concert for a cause)

Fri Sept 14

• Shreya Goshal Live In Concert

Fri July 20 to Sat Dec 15

• Shreya Ghoshal Live in Concert

• Turning Rumi: Singing Verses of Love, Unity and Freedom Part2 : The Art of Salma Arastu

Venue: Merkin Concert Hall at Kaufman Center, New York Time: 8pm Contact: www.vidyadaanam.org Highlights: Kala Ramnath & Lalgudi Vijayalakshmi, The duo will be accompanied by Bangalore V. Praveen on Mridangam& Pandit Abhijit Banerjee on Tabla

Sun Sept 23 • Dulhan Expro 2012 Venue: Hyatt Regency Long Island, 1717 Motor Pkwy, Huppauge, NY Time: 2am Contact: 732-754-1894

Venue: Sun National Bank Center, 81 hamilton Ave, at Rt, 129, Trenton, NJ Time: 8pm Contact: 718-639-9200

Sun Sept 23 • Viva La Music Latina! Venue: Fire N Ice- NJ, 583 Ford Ave Fords, NJ Time: 8pm Contact: 732-417-1999

Fri Oct 12 • UTSAV- UCarnival New Jersey Venue: Hilton Garden Inn Edison/Raritan Center, 50 Raritan Center Pkwy, Edison, NJ Time: 11am Contact: 510-578-8728

Venue: Akoo Theatre at Rosemont, 5400, North River Road, Rosemont, IL Time: 8pm Contact: 773-764-7576

Fri Sept 21 • Mumbai Se Chicago Venue: Hollybollyproductions, 6355 N Broadway # 17, Chicago, IL Time: 1pm Contact: 773-353-5080

Sat Sept 22 • Grand Traditional Kuchipudi Performance By Sri Kishore Mosalikanti and Smt. Padmavani Mosalikanti Venue: DVeluchamy Auditorium, Sri Venkateswara Swami Temple, Aurora, IL Time: 5pm Contact: 630-844-2254

WASHINGTON DC

Upcoming

Venue: Dominican University of California, 50 Acacia Avenue, San Rafael, California 94901 Time: 2:30pm to 4:30pm (Artist Reception on Sat Sept 15at Community Gallery, Alemany Library) Contact: 415-482-2453

Thurs Sep 13 • Dinner with Artist Spb & Chitra Venue: Ananda Bhawan, 920 E Arques Ave, Sunnyvale, CA Time: 8pm Contact: 510-796-5252

Sat Sept 15 • Kids Ganesha Puja Shiva Murugan Temple Venue: Concord Shiva Murugan Temple, 1803 2nd St., Concord, CA Time: 10am Contact: 484-727-8424

Sat Sept 15

• Just Duets

• Dominican University of California Presents: Artist Reception

Venue: The Hall, 125 Prospect St, Framingham Time: 7pm Contact: 978-621-8030

Venue: 50 Acacia Avenue, San Rafael, CA Time: 2:30pm to 4:30pm Contact: 415-482-2453

Sat Sept 15

Fri Oct 19 • Pujari Celebrates Durga Puja Venue: Berkmar High School, 405 Pleasant Hill Road, Lilburn Time: 8pm Contact: 678-242-9578

Sat Sept 22 • Forever Pamcham Venue: Schultz Cultural Arts Hall, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto, CA Time: 7pm Contact: 408-802-5128

Sun Sept 16 • A Special Dinner, DJ and Dance with Popular Playback Singers Venue: Bombay Garden Reataurant, 5995 Mowry Ave, Newark, CA Time: 8:30pm Contact: 510-744-6945

Sat Sept 22 • Saaral Venue: Chabot College Auditorium, 25555, Hesparian Blvd, Hayward, CA Time: 5:30pm Contact: 408-537-3458

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA Upcoming Fri Sept 14 • Utsav- UCarnival Los Anglels Venue: Holiday Inn- La Mirada, 14299, Firestone blvd, La Mirada, CA Time: 2pm Contact: 510-578-8728

Sat Sept 22 • Ganesh/Gowri Pooja Venue: Jain Mandir, 8072 Commonwealth Ave, Buena Park, CA Time: 12pm Contact: 949-768-5740

Sun Sept 23 • Sarangi & Sitar Jugalbandi (A Rare Dialogue of Evening Ragas) Venue: Yoga House, 11 West State Street, Pasadena, CA Time: 8pm Contact: 310-753-3303

Thurs Sept 27 • Ballet Folklorico De Mexico Venue: Palace Theater, 61 Atlantic St. Stamford, CT 06901 Time: 8pm Contact: 203-325-4466

Fri Oct 19 • Royal Drummers and Dancers of Burundi Venue: Palace Theater, 61 Atlantic St. Stamford, CT 06901 Time: 8pm Contact: 203-325-4466

Fri Nov 2 • Spirituals to Funk Venue: Palace Theatre, 61 Atlantic St. Stamford, CT 06901 Time: 8pm Contact: 203-322-9862 Highlights: Dr John And 5-time Grammy award winners Blind boys of Alabama.


Vivekananda Memorial Kanyakumari

K

anyakumari is the southernmost point of peninsular India and the meeting point of three oceans - the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean. Besides its importance as a Hindu pilgrim center, it is famous for its beautiful views of sunrise and sunset over the waters. The multicolored sand is a unique feature of the beach here. History: Kanyakumari was once referred to as the Alexandria of the east. This place has been a great center for art, culture, civilization, and pilgrimage for years. It was also a famous center for commerce and trade. During the early part of the eighth century AD Islam entered the southern part of India through the sea route with traders and

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missionaries. Through St. Thomas, one of the twelve Apostles of Christ, Christianity arrived in this area in AD 52. Islam, Christianity and Jainism have greatly contributed to the architectural wealth and literary heritage of this place. Kanyakumari was also under the control of the Cholas, the Cheras, the Pandyas and the Nayaks who were great rulers of south India. The architectural beauty of the temples is the work of these rulers. During the British Raj, Kanyakumari was bestowed the

September 14, 2012

dry title of Cape Comorin, necessitated perhaps by the Englishmen's inability to pronounce local names. Legend has it that Kanya Devi, an avatar of Goddess Parvati, was to wed Lord Shiva, the destroyer in the Hindu trinity. But he did not turn up at the auspicious time and the wedding never took place. The rice and cereals meant for the marriage remained uncooked. Even today, one can buy stones there that look exactly like rice and cereals. Local folks believe that they are the leftovers of the legendary marriage that could not be solemnized. As for the princess Kanya Devi, she became a virgin goddess blessing pilgrims and tourists alike. Cont’d on page 30


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September 14, 2012

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Australia trying to improve image to attract Indian tourists MELBOURNE: Over 70 Indian travel agents have gathered here to experience Australian holidays as part of an event organized by Tourism Australia to tap Indian travelers for its 842 million dollar tourism industry, which was hit after a series of attacks on Indian students. "Australia is still a dream destination for Indian travelers and we are here to get a feel of holiday experience so that we can sell it to Indian travelers," Ashok H Lalchandani told PTI at India Mega Famil and Workshop 2012 function held at the iconic Aquarium building here. "Even though Australia is an expensive destination but it is seen as a different destination for an Indian traveler," he said, adding the issue of attacks on Indian students in recent years which had tarnished Australia's image was now an old story and would have no effect on their visiting plans. "The Australian government has been trying very hard to rebuild their image and one or two issue will not deter the Indian

travelers plan," he said. Echoing similar sentiments General Manager (Products contracting & operations) of Kuoni Travel's Sunita Amarnani said Indian traveler today was looking at a different experience and Australia had a lot to

now," she said. The visiting travel operators were welcomed by Federal Tourism Minister Martin Ferguson, Victoria's tourism and major events minister Louise Asher and Tourism Australia head Andrew McEvoy.

"India is a market with immense potential and is growing quickly with 68,300 visitors to Australia till May 2012, an increase of 5.2 per cent on the same period last year," Ferguson added. "Indian travelers really enjoy the combination of our nature, people and food and shopping experiences," he said offer for such segment, specially honeymooners and visiting friends and relatives. "As a travel operators we are here to experience the new travel products of Australia, specially offbeat destinations like Snow and Ski experience of Mt Buller near Melbourne, which Indians are interested in

Speaking on the occasion, Ferguson told the agents that India was an important trade partner for Australia. "India is a market with immense potential and is growing quickly with 68,300 visitors to Australia till May 2012, an increase of 5.2 per cent on the same period last year,"

Ferguson added. "Indian travelers really enjoy the combination of our nature, people and food and shopping experiences," he said. "I recently reconfirmed our commitment to this market by launching the India 2020 Strategy, a strategy which will help the India market reach its growth potential to be worth up to 2.3 billion dollars by 2020," he said. Asher also welcomed Indian travel operators and said Victorian Coalition Government was pleased that the state won the opportunity to stage and support this important Tourism Australia event in Melbourne. Indians visit to Australia have grown at a compound annual growth rate of 12.3 per cent over the last decade. McEvoy said the time was right for Tourism Australia to invest more to maintain its presence and enable the industry to better leverage a future competitive advantage. -PTI

Kanyakumari: Center of art, culture and pilgrimage Cont’d from page 29

Best time to visit: Due to its proximity to the sea, Kanyakumari enjoys a pleasant climate and can be visited throughout the year. However, the best season to visit this place would be between October and March. During summers, the temperature can rise to a high of 34.8°C while it can dip to a low of 20.4°C during winters. Tourist attractions The Kumari Amman or the Kanyakumari Temple, located on the shore, is dedicated to a manifestation of Parvati, the virgin goddess who did penance to obtain Lord Shiva's hand in marriage. The temple and the adjoining ghat, picturesquely situated overlooking the shore, attract tourist from all over the world. The diamond nosering of the deity is famous for its sparkling splendor said to be visible even from the sea. Two rocks reach out of the ocean, southeast of the Kumari Amman temple. One of these is Sri Padaparai, where the footprints of the virgin goddess are said to be imprinted. Swami Vivekananda is said to have sat in deep meditation and here also stands the famous Vivekananda Rock Memorial built in 1970. There is a dhyana mandapam where one can sit in a serene atmosphere and meditate. Ferry services are available to reach the memorial. The striking Gandhi Memorial has been built on the spot where the urn containing the Mahatma's ashes was kept for public viewing before immersion. Resembling central Indian Hindu temples in form, the memorial was so designed that on Mahatma Gandhi's birthday

Kanyakumari temple

(October 2), the first rays of the sun fall on the exact place where the ashes of the father of the nation were kept. Places around Vattakottai (literally, circular fort) is an 18th-century fort overlooking the sea, located six km from Kanyakumari. The Udayagiri Fort (34 km), built by King Marthanda Varma (AD 1729-1758), has a foundry for casting guns. The king's trusted European general De Lennoy's grave is located within this fort. Situated 13 km from Kanyakumari, Suchindram bears the imprint of various kingdoms. The Thanumalayan temple here is a repository of art treasures belonging to those kingdoms. The temple is famous for its musical columns and its impressive six mtall statue of Hanuman. The main deity in the form of a Shivling represents Shiva, Vishnu, and Brahma, the trinity of the Hindu pantheon. Ancient inscriptions

dating back to the ninth century are found in this place. The Nagaraja Temple at Nagarkoil (20 km) is a magnificent temple with Nagaraja as the main

Tiruchendur (85 km) is the site of a beautiful temple dedicated to Lord Subramanya. The temple located here on the shore of the Bay of Bengal is one of the six abodes of Lord Subramanya. The location of the temple draws a perennial stream of devotees deity. There are also shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva and Vishnu. The entrance to this temple is remi-

Gandhi Memorial Kanyakumari

niscent of the Chinese architecture of a Buddhist Vihar. Nagercoil is 19 kms from Kanyakumari on the way to Padmanabhapuram. Padmanabhapuram Palace (45 km) is a large mansion of the Travancore Kings. It is known for its fascinating natural splendor. Tiruchendur (85 km) is the site of a beautiful temple dedicated to Lord Subramanya. The temple located here on the shore of the Bay of Bengal is one of the six abodes of Lord Subramanya. The location of the temple draws a perennial stream of devotees. The temple overlooking the singing sea is an inspiring sight. The Courtallam Fall (137 km) is perched at a height of 167 m. Its water is believed to contain medicinal properties. Fairs & festivals The Chaitra Purnima Festival (the April full-moon day, celebrated in the first week of May), Navratri (last week of October), and the Holy Annual Festival of the Ro-

man Catholic Church (fourth week of December) are the notable festivals celebrated in Kanyakumari. How to reach Air - The nearest airport is at Trivandrum (80 km). It is directly connected with Bangalore, Mumbai, Cochin, Delhi, Goa, and Chennai by regular flights. Rail - Kanyakumari is connected to Thiruvananthapuram, Delhi, and Mumbai by broadgauge railway network. Tirunelvelli (80 km) is the other nearest railway junction and can be reached by road via Nagarkoil (19 km). Road - Kanyakumari is connected by road to Trivandrum (86 km), Nagarkoil (19 km), Tirunelvelli (91 km), Tiruchendur (89 km), Tuticorin (129 km), Rameshwaram (300 km), Courtallam (130 km), Madurai (242 km), Thekkady (358 km), Kodaikanal (362 km), Palani (370 km), Ootacamund (576 km), Cochin (309 km), and Coimbatore (478 km).


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Hotel industry on recovery path, room tariff goes up MUMBAI: The hotel tariff went up by 12 per cent in the first six months of this year in the country amid rise in demand for hotel rooms from domestic travelers, the recent Hotel Price Index (HPI) report said. According to the report which reviewed the hotel tariff globally, there are clear signs that the hotel industry is on the recovery path. "In India, the overall rate rose 12 per cent following a surge in demand from domestic travelers as overseas destinations became more expensive," the report said. For the first time in five years, travelers paid more for their hotel rooms during the first six months of 2012, in all parts of the world and globally average hotel prices rose by 4 per cent over the last year indicating the hotel industry is staging recovery, it said. Launched in 2004, the HPI looks at prices that people actually paid for their hotel rooms around the world. "The hotel industry bounced back in the first half of this year from a number of natural and political crises in 2011, and it is en-

couraging to see growth in the sector," Hotels.com President David Roche said. While initially it may not seem good news for consumers, hotel prices are still only around their 2005 level, representing great value

In the Pacific, the resources boom in Australia meant that space was at a premium, especially in Western Australia with global business visitors vying with mining executives for rooms for travelers when both wages and other prices have risen considerably, he added. Following the turmoil of the Arab Spring in early 2011, confidence returned to much of the Middle East and North Africa and hotel prices rose accordingly. Japanese began to travel again putting behind the turbulence of

MP govt measures to boost tourism BHOPAL: In a bid to boost tourism in the state, the Madhya Pradesh government has announced a slew of measures including providing assistance for converting privately-owned properties into heritage hotels. The decision in this regard was taken by the state Cabinet which approved amendments in the 'Tourism Policy - 2010' at its meeting chaired by Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan here, official sources said. Besides giving tourism an industrial status and providing subsidy for refurbishing private properties, the government also decided to offer assistance for setting up budget hotels at important religious places. The Cabinet decided to construct large convention centers at Bhopal and Indore and mediumsized such centers at Jabalpur and Gwalior, sources said. The policy envisages uninterrupted power supply at prominent tourist places and promotion of weekend tourism. Among other decisions, the Cabinet approved new 'Warehousing and Logistics Policy 2012' which is aimed at raising the storage capacity by 20 lakh MT in next

two years by attracting private investment in the sector. The current storage capacity of the state is 91 lakh MT, sources said. The Cabinet also raised the honorarium of Gurujis (teachers) by Rs 1100 per month to Rs 3600 with effect from April 1, 2013. For implementation of Narmada river water project scheme in Bhopal, the Cabinet will levy a fixed

The Cabinet decided to construct large convention centers at Bhopal and Indore and medium-sized such centers at Jabalpur and Gwalior, sources said amount on persons constructing houses on a plot of the sizes ranging from 500 sq ft to 4000 sq ft and above at different rates. The Cabinet also took a number of decisions including approving amendments in the Technical Education and Skill Development Policy-2012. -PTI

the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster in March 2011 while there was significant increase in the number of Chinese international travelers that helped to drive rates higher, the report said. In the US, increasing business travel coupled with higher consumer spending made hotels busier with less discounting. In the Pacific, the resources boom in Australia meant that space was at a premium, especially in Western Australia with global business visitors vying with mining executives for rooms. Although rates rose as a whole in Europe, the results showed a mixed picture. In euro zone, prices dropped where falling consumer confidence and spending power led to lower occupancy in the major cities and holiday hot spots. "The first six months of 2012 have proved a promising start for most hotels. However, the second half of the year, with increasingly mixed economic signals, will be interesting to watch," Roche said. -PTI

IRCTC offers Singapore, Thailand tours NEW DELHI: Buoyed by the overwhelming response to its maiden international package, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation has decided to offer more such outbound packages for Singapore, Thailand and Dubai. IRCTC, a subsidiary of Railways, is offering Dubai package for Indian travelers for the second time from September 27. "Our first Dubai package from August 21 to August 26 was a successful one as all 42 seats on the offer were booked. Now the second Dubai package is from September 27," a senior IRCTC official said. For the September 27 package, travelers will be leaving from Mumbai for Dubai. "We are planning to offer packages for Singapore and Thailand during the festive season. Talks with airlines and hoteliers are in advance stage and the packages will be announced shortly," he said. The Dubai package includes economy class air travel, hotel staying, sightseeing with tour guide, meals among others. IRCTC is already in the business of domestic tour packages. -PTI

ONGC to keep Taj clean & environment-friendly NEW DELHI: Going ahead with its ambitious 'Clean India' campaign, the Tourism Ministry has roped in oil PSU ONGC to keep six major tourist sites, including Taj Mahal and Konark Temple clean and environment-friendly. "ONGC has expressed its willingness to join the Clean India campaign and take up six tourist destinations across the country as part of their corporate social responsibility," said a senior Tourism Ministry official. The six sites are Taj Mahal, Khajuraho Temples, Konark Temple, Ajanta-Ellora Caves, Bodhgaya and Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminal. "The modalities are being worked out and an MoU with ONGC will be signed soon for keeping these sites clean and environment-friendly," the official said. The oil explorer major will take up responsibility of the cleaning work, maintenance, upkeep and refurbishment of these sites as per the requirement. Lack of hygiene and cleanliness at tourist destinations has negatively impacted tourism in the country. Tourism Ministry has taken the initiative of launching

the Clean India campaign with a vision to ensure an acceptable level of cleanliness and hygiene practices at tourist destinations which would be sustained through involvement of private and public sector stakeholders as a part of their corporate social responsibility.

The oil explorer major will take up responsibility of the cleaning work, maintenance, upkeep and refurbishment of these sites as per the requirement The Clean India campaign was launched recently with ITDC, a subsidiary of Tourism Ministry, adopting Qutab Minar. For realization of its full potential, Tourism Ministry envisages a target of 12 per cent growth rate in foreign tourist arrivals as well as domestic tourist visits during the 12th Five-Year Plan period. -PTI

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TOP TEN HINDI FILM SONGS

1 Tum Hi Ho Bandhu: Cocktail 2 Mukhtasar: Teri Meri Kahaani 3 Humse Pyaar Karle Tu: TMK 4 Second Hand Jawani: Cocktail 5 Daru Desi: Cocktail 34

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September 14, 2012

6 Thats All I Really Wanna Do: TMK 7 Dhadang Dhang: Rowdy Rathore 8 Aa Re Pritam Pyaare: Rowdy Rathore 9 Chinta Ta Ta Chita Chita: Rowdy Rathore 10 Jiya Tu Bihar Ke Lala: Gangs Of Wasseypur

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hah Rukh Khan, who was shooting for Yash Chopra's untitled directorial project in Kashmir, has wrapped up his schedule there and says he is taking back home some important things that he learnt during his short sojourn in the valley. SRK wrote on Twitter as he bid adieu to Pahalgam: "Leaving Pahalgam. Learnt life's lesson in my forefathers land. Only beauty is not enuff, u gotta be tough too to survive. I will be, Insha Allah." SRK had a busy week-long shooting schedule in Pahalgam where he shot at picturesque locations like Aru, Betaab Valley and Baisaran. The movie will see SRK as an army man and has actress Katrina Kaif and Anushka Sharma as his leading ladies. Yash Chopra's son Aditya is directing the film which is scheduled for Diwali release and will hit theatres Nov 13. For SRK, who is doing his maiden film shoot in Kashmir, coming to the Valley of meadows and mountains has been a rewarding experience. His grandmother belonged to Kashmir and SRK recently tweeted that during his stay in Pahalgam he managed to get 10 hours sleep after a long time and felt fresh and regenerated. In fact, he has been so relaxed that SRK switched his phone to ringing mode after keeping it on silent for years.

BOLLY-BOUND

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t was reported that Bipasha Basu was mobbed by fans in Ahmedabad while promoting "Raaz 3" and was irritated with the chaos. However, the actress denies such reports. "Even I don't know what happened. I have got a lot of love from everywhere, be it Jaipur, Ahmedabad, and Kolkata. So I don't know from where this news came, though there was a lot of crowd," she said in an interview. "I was not irritated at all, in fact, I am very happy with the way publicity is happening. There is a lot of love, nothing negative has happened. So I am unaware where this news cropped up from," she added. Meanwhile, as a promotional tactic for her horror thriller "Raaz 3", Bipasha recently distributed lemon and chillies, known to ward off bad omen, to rickshawallahs.

fter the success of "Jism 2", porn star and Bollywood newcomer Sunny Leone now aims to establish herself as one of the successful mainstream actresses of B-town by dabbling in different kinds of roles in the near future. "My full concentration is now on Bollywood. I want to do different and all kinds of roles, especially playing meaningful characters. I want to establish myself as a successful mainstream actress," Sunny said in an interview. "In order to become successful in Bollywood, for the next two-three years I will stay on in India as I want to give my hundred percent," said the 31-yearold Indo-Canadian. Sunny, who received rave reviews for her portrayal of Izna in "Jism 2", is not perplexed about constant comparisons of her image as a porn star and an actress. When asked whether it hurts when people and a section of the tinsel town tries to look at her more as a porn star by overlooking her acting skills, Sunny said: "Everybody can have their own perception and their own way to look at everything. I can't change that."


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September 14, 2012

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'ISHKQ' IS OVER

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riety Zinta is happy that her debut production "Ishkq In Paris" is wrapped up and she thanked the cast and crew for their support. "Finally we wrap 'Ishkq In Paris' shooting! Movie is finally over. Cannot believe it! Thank you everyone," tweeted the 37-year-old. Directed by Prem Soni, who earlier worked with Preity Zinta in the Salman Khan-starrer "Main Aur Mrs. Khanna", "Ishkq In Paris" also features Arjun Rampal and French actress Isabelle Adjani. The movie will also see TV actor Gaurav Chanana in a pivotal role.

Comeback Smiley

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he debuted with hit film 2005 "Kalyug" and after two years Smiley Suri is likely to make a comeback with a sequel. After "Kalyug", which was about the porn film industry, she featured in a couple of more projects and her last release was "Crook" that came in 2010. Sharing her future plans, she says: "I will make a comeback soon for sure. The last two years were extremely bad for me. My dad passed away and I was in my shell. Now I have come out and am ready to face the camera." "Talks are on. I can't talk much about my films but if things go well, then my brother Mohit Suri will be directing me yet again." When asked whether there would be a sequel to "Kaliyug", she said: "It might be. But I as I said, I can't reveal much about it."

HAVING FUN A ll three Sonakshi films and her next two are driven by male dominant roles. Sonakshi hardly had anything to do with the films except for a few dances and a few scenes in the film. Doesn't she want to do challenging roles? Or does she feel it's just the start? "See, if you see other actresses who are on the top today, even they started with four songs and five scenes in their first few films," says Sonakshi, "I know what my place is in the industry and I am happy to consolidate on that. I don't know what's the criteria for others to do films but for me it is all the more important to have an enjoyable experience more than anything else. I have a lot of time to prove myself and am sure that there would be many more performance oriented roles in my future films." As of now she is more than happy to play a 'Soni Kudi' in her next film, 'Son of Sardar' opposite Ajay Devgan.


„ Health

Line

Health majors have best shot at jobs BLOOMINGTON, Ind.: An Indiana University study has found that what people studied in college had a direct effect on their chances of employment during the Great Recession. People with degrees in health, education and biology/life sciences had the best chance of getting and holding a job from 2009 to 2010, according to the recent study by the Indiana Business Research Center at IU's at Kelley School of Business. Only one out of every 44 graduates in those fields found themselves unemployed, according to the data. However, the odds of employment were against those with degrees related to architecture, industrial arts, consumer service and engineering. -AP

„

Health officials warn Neb. fairgoers of swine flu

GRAND ISLAND, Neb.: Health officials have posted signs outside the swine barn at the Nebraska State Fair in Grand Island to warn visitors of a new strain of swine flu. The Central District Health Department in Grand Island tacked up the signs as the new flu strain, known as H3N2v, has infected 289 people in the U.S., the Grand Island Independent reported. None of those cases has been in Nebraska. But a 61-year-old Ohio woman died earlier this week after contracting the strain after having contact with hogs at an Ohio county fair, and the Minnesota Department of Health has said three people developed swine flu symptoms after exhibiting pigs or spending time in the last 10 days at the Minnesota State Fair's swine barn. -AP

„ Medical College to study toddler ear infections MILWAUKEE: The Medical College of Wisconsin has a grant from the National Institutes of Health to study ear infections in preschoolers. The $1.6 million, 5-year grant will be used to study fluid buildup in the ear following an infection that can cause hearing loss. Dr. Joseph Kerschner says they'll look at the characteristics of preschoolers with hearing loss. Kerschner says researchers will also look at what happens on the molecular level with different bacterial combinations. -AP

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September 14, 2012

Gym supplements could do you more harm than good LONDON: Gym goers, attention! High levels of additional protein can cause you several health ailments including nausea, kidney and liver damage, according to the British Dietetic Association (BDA). Details on page 38

Asthma inhalers can stunt growth in kids

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hildren who use inhaled steroid drugs for asthma end up slightly shorter at their full adult height than children who don't use the drugs. This is the finding from a comprehensive asthma study, which has Robert C. Strunk, MD, the Donald Strominger Professor of Pediatrics at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis as the senior author. The study involved more than 1,000 children ages 5-12 who were treated for mild to moderate asthma as part of the Childhood Asthma Management Program (CAMP) clinical trial. The children received treatment for more than four years at eight centers, including Washington University School of Medicine. They were divided into three groups: one received twice-daily budesonide, an inhaled corticosteroid medication; a second group received nedocromil, an inhaled non-steroid medication; and a third group received a placebo. All children received albuterol, a fast-acting drug for relief of acute asthma symptoms, and oral corticosteroids as needed for asthma symptoms. The researchers followed 943 participants in the trial at regular intervals until they reached adult

Pediatric asthma specialists at St. Louis Children's Hospital keep a close watch on the growth of their patients who use inhaled steroids, Strunk said. They are measured at every visit, and physicians keep a growth curve height. Females were considered to be at adult height at age 18 or older and males at age 20 or older, Strunk said. In the first 4 1/2 years after the end of the trial, researchers took patients' height and weight every six months. Over the next eight years, height and weight were measured once or twice a year. The mean adult height was about one-half inch, or 1.2 centimeters,

shorter in the group that received budesonide than in the patients who received nedocromil or placebo. The patients who experienced the slower growth were primarily between 5-11 years old when they began using budesonide. The slower growth took place only in the first two years of the four-year study. As the study progressed, the children who took the budesonide remained one-half

inch shorter through adulthood than the children who did not use the drug, said Strunk, who treats children with asthma at St. Louis Children's Hospital. "This was surprising because in previous studies, we found that the slower growth would be temporary, not affecting adult height. But none of those studies followed patients from the time they entered the study until they had reached adult height," Strunk stated. Pediatric asthma specialists at St. Louis Children's Hospital keep a close watch on the growth of their patients who use inhaled steroids, Strunk said. They are measured at every visit, and physicians keep a growth curve. "If a child is not growing as they should, we may reduce their steroid dose," he noted. "But we think that the half-inch of lowered adult height must be balanced against the well-established benefit of inhaled corticosteroids in controlling persistent asthma. We will use the lowest effective dose to control symptoms to minimize concerns about effects on adult height," he added. The findings will be presented at the European Respiratory Society meeting in Vienna, Austria, and published online in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Frozen embryos produce healthier babies LONDON: Women who have fertility treatment with frozen embryos may have a better chance of success than those who use "fresh" ones, a new study has claimed. Current practice for most In vitro fertilization (IVF) clinics is that the best, fresh embryos are used first and only spare, goodquality embryos are frozen for transfer at a later stage. Researchers from the University of Aberdeen systematically reviewed more than 37,000 IVF pregnancies and found that there was a reduced chance of mothers bleeding and of babies being born prematurely with low birth weight when the embryos were stored and frozen compared with

treatment involving freshlytransplanted ones, The Independent reported. The review of 11 international studies also found that the death

should reassure mothers who intend to have IVF treatment with frozen embryos, but opinions are divided about whether the findings should lead to a change in

'Initially there were concerns about the safety of freezing techniques, and it was felt the quality of the embryo could deteriorate and impact on the health of the child. However, data to date has been reassuring' rate immediately before and after birth was lower in babies who were born as a result of transferring frozen-thawed embryos into the womb compared with the transfer of fresh IVF embryos. Scientists said the results

the existing policy. "If pregnancy rates are equal and outcome in pregnancies are better, our results question whether one should consider freezing all embryos and transferring them at a later date, rather than transferring

fresh embryos," lead researcher, Abha Maheshwari, said. "This represents a major paradigm change in assisted reproduction, and one which could satisfy the twin demands of optimizing safety and success. Traditionally it has been thought that fresh is always better and used as a first choice," Maheshwari was quoted as saying by the paper. "Initially there were concerns about the safety of freezing techniques, and it was felt the quality of the embryo could deteriorate and impact on the health of the child. However, data to date has been reassuring," Maheshwari told the British Science Festival in Aberdeen. The study was published in journal Fertility and Sterility. -PTI


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IVF success rate can jump by 20% MUMBAI: Thirty-three-yearold Swati Kapoor (name changed) underwent many failed pregnancies before she finally held her first baby in her arms. She is also one of the few mothers to have witnessed her baby being formed right from a single cell - a miracle very few mothers around the world have witnessed. Kapoor had been trying to conceive through in-vitro fertilization (IVF) at a private hospital in the city for over a year, but with little success. But technology came to her rescue, when doctors monitored the developing fertilized egg for up to five days before implanting it in her womb using an embryoscope - a device that photographically records the embryo growth outside the womb until it matures for implant. "Of the few complex pregnancies we have worked on, the embryoscope has provided a marked improvement in the success rate. Earlier, we would implant up to three embryos and leave the pregnancy to chance," said chief embryologist Vrunda Kuchekar at Lilavati Hospital in Bandra. Currently, IVF clinics check if an embryo is fit for implant by

manually removing the sample for observation under a microscope, which is otherwise constantly maintained in an incubated condition at 37 degrees Celsius. While one in every three IVF couples achieve a successful pregnancy, Spain-based clinical embryologist Marcos Meseguer said, "The use of embryoscope

are magnified close to 10,000 times, which doctors monitor through a workstation to detect possible anomalies during the formation," added Meseguer. Although six hospitals across the country are employing the embryoscope to push up IVF-related pregnancies, a majority of the private consultants remain apprehensive due to the high in-

While one in every three IVF couples achieve a successful pregnancy, Spainbased clinical embryologist Marcos Meseguer said, "The use of embryoscope pushes success rate of conception by 10-20%, thus making parenthood possible for one in every two couples" pushes success rate of conception by 10-20%, thus making parenthood possible for one in every two couples. This, apart from cutting the risk of a multiple pregnancy." "Maintaining constant incubation temperatures for proper development of the zygote, the embryoscope can hold 72 samples at a time which it photographs every 20 minutes using an in-built camera. The images

stallation costs (close to Rs70 lakh) of the hi-tech machine. "As private hospitals don't fund machines, consultants must acquire the hi-tech yet expensive machine on their own accord. It will be some years before private doctors start using the embryoscope, after working out a cost-benefit analysis," said fertility consultant Kedar Ganla at Dr LH Hiranandani Hospital in Powai. - Courtesy DNA India

Micronutrients could improve sperm quality in older men WASHINGTON: Healthy intake of micronutrients such as vitamin C, E, folate and zinc could improve the sperm DNA quality significantly in older men, a new study has claimed. The study led by scientists from the US Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, however, found that in younger men a higher intake of micronutrients did not improve the sperm DNA. An analysis of 80 healthy male volunteers between 22 and 80 years of age, found that men older than 44 who consumed the most vitamin C had 20 per cent less sperm DNA damage compared to men older than 44 who consumed the least vitamin C. The same was true for vitamin E, zinc, and folate. "It appears that consuming more micronutrients such as vitamin C, E, folate and zinc helps turn back the clock for older men. We found that men 44 and older who consumed at least the recommended dietary allowance of certain micronutrients had sperm with a similar amount of DNA damage as the sperm of younger men," said Andy Wyrobek of Berkeley Lab's Life

Sciences Division. "This means that men who are at increased risk of sperm DNA damage because of advancing age can do something about it. They can make sure they get enough vitamins and micronutrients in their diets or through supplements," added Wyrobek.

"This means that men who are at increased risk of sperm DNA damage because of advancing age can do something about it. They can make sure they get enough vitamins and micronutrients in their diets or through supplements" Although the scientists found a clear and strong link between higher vitamin intake and improved sperm DNA quality in older men, they don't know whether this link extends to male fertility and the health of offspring. The report was published in the journal Fertility and Sterility. -PTI


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Kids exposed to smoking in the Studies on health impacts of drilling seek funds womb become obese

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hildren who are exposed to smoking in the womb are likely to have an increased risk for adolescent obesity, according to a study. And the risk is possibly related to subtle structural variations in the brain that create a preference for eating fatty foods, the study found. "Prenatal exposure to maternal cigarette smoking is a well-established risk factor for obesity, but the underlying mechanisms are not known," the researchers said. "Preference for fatty foods, regulated in part by the brain reward system, may contribute to the development of obesity," they noted. Amirreza Haghighi, M.D., of the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada, and colleagues, studied 378 adolescents age 13 to 19 years who were recruited through high schools in one region of Quebec, Canada, as part of the ongoing Saguenay Youth

Study. Participants were grouped as exposed to maternal smoking (n=180) or non-exposed to maternal smoking (n=198) and participants in each group were matched

"Preference for fatty foods, regulated in part by the brain reward system, may contribute to the development of obesity," they noted. at recruitment by maternal education and participant's school attendance to minimize confounding influence of socio-economic status (SES), and did not differ by sex, age, puberty stage or height.

The researchers defined exposed as having a mother who smoked more than one cigarette a day during the second trimester of pregnancy, and non-exposed as having a mother who did not smoke one year before (and throughout) the pregnancy. Exposed versus non-exposed participants weighed less at birth and were breastfed for shorter periods of time. At the time of analysis, exposed participants had a marginally higher body weight and BMI, and a significantly higher total body fat compared with nonexposed participants. These differences persisted after adjustment for age, sex, and height (when appropriate), and were still significant when adjusting for additional variables frequently associated with maternal smoking during pregnancy (i.e., lower birth weight, shorter duration [or lack of] breastfeeding, and lower SES). Exposed versus non-exposed participants also exhibited a significantly lower volume of the amygdala (part of the brain that plays a role in processing emotions and storing memories), and the researchers found that, consistent with its possible role in limiting fat intake, amygdala volume correlated inversely with fat intake. "Prenatal exposure to maternal cigarette smoking may promote obesity by enhancing dietary preference for fat, and this effect may be mediated in part through subtle structural variations in the amygdala," the researchers concluded. The finding was published Online First by Archives of General Psychiatry, a JAMA Network publication.

Gym supplements could do you more harm than good LONDON: Gym goers, attention! High levels of additional protein can cause you several health ailments including nausea, kidney and liver damage, according to the British Dietetic Association (BDA). The association now demands clearer warnings about the composition and ingredients of gym supplements that can come in the form of powders and bars. The human body needs protein for muscle growth and many gym goers use it to try to get bigger quickly, the 'BBC News' reported. Gym supplements come under

food law so although they have to be labeled properly what is in them can vary. They are different to medicines, which legally have to ensure contents are more specific. There have been warnings before, most recently from the Food Standards Agency, which advises people not to take gym supplements containing DMAA. The BDA argues there is now evidence to show excess levels of additional protein taken over a long time can cause health problems. "The more protein in your diet the more you have to get rid of,"

the BDA said. "People who have these high protein diets are now running into problems with their kidneys because of the amount of protein they must get rid of," it added. The association believes people can get enough safe protein naturally from things like chicken and milk rather than these supplements. However, the Health Food Manufacturers' Association, which represents the supplement industry, says compared to other foods or medicines, gym supplements have an enviable record. -PTI

PITTSBURGH: A much-publicized plan by two Pennsylvania health companies to study possible impacts from gas drilling is only in the preliminary stages as the groups continue to look for major funding. Meanwhile, a group that has been examining similar questions is starting to focus on air quality, as precise numbers of people who've had health complaints linked to drilling remain elusive. Geisinger Health Systems of Danville and Guthrie Health of Sayre are in the planning stages of examining how people might be affected by gas drilling activity. Geisinger spokeswoman Marcy Marshall said the company has received $100,000 from a local charitable organization and is seeking other grants. The initial funding will pay for the planning stage and some pilot studies, she said. Guthrie spokeswoman Maggie Barnes said the company hasn't received any funding or started research. Guthrie will seek future grants and do research in collaboration with Geisinger. Both health systems serve many patients who live in areas that have seen a recent boom in Marcellus Shale gas drilling. The gas-rich formation thousands of feet underground has generated jobs and billions of dollars in revenue for companies and individual leaseholders. Many federal and state regulators say hydraulic fracturing is safe when done properly, and that thousands of wells have been drilled with few complaints of pollution. But environmental groups and some doctors assert regulations still aren't tough enough and that the practice can

pollute groundwater and air. Raina Rippel of the Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project said their next big push will be on air quality. ``We have plans in the works to look at personal monitors people could wear'' to detect harmful levels of natural gas, she said. Rippel said there've been ``dozens'' of complaints in the community they serve, about 50 miles south of Pittsburgh, and some patterns are emerging. But the nonprofit group hasn't conclusively linked the complaints to nearby drilling. Until a few months ago, Pennsylvania public health officials had expected to get a share of the revenue being generated by the state's new Marcellus Shale

Many federal and state regulators say hydraulic fracturing is safe when done properly, and that thousands of wells have been drilled with few complaints of pollution law, which is projected to provide about $180 million to state and local governments in the first year. But representatives from Republican Gov. Tom Corbett's office and the state Senate cut the health appropriation to zero during final negotiations, so now the state Department of Health is left with a new workload but no funding to examine whether gas drilling impacts health. -AP

How diseases affect immune function LONDON: UCLA researchers have discovered a type of cell that is the "missing link" between bone marrow stem cells and all the cells of the human immune system. The finding may help explain how a healthy immune system is produced and how disease can lead to poor immune function. The studies were done using human bone marrow, which contains all the stem cells that produce blood during postnatal life. The research team was "intrigued to find this particular bone marrow cell because it opens up a lot of new possibilities in terms of

understanding how human immunity is produced from stem cells throughout life," said study senior author Dr. Gay Crooks, codirector of the Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regenerative Medicine and a co-director of the Cancer and Stem Cell Biology program at UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. Understanding the process of normal blood formation in human adults is a crucial step in shedding light on what goes wrong during the process that results in leukemia, or cancer of the blood. Cont’d on page 39


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Vitamin B12 eludes 8 out of 10 Indians MUMBAI: Ity Aggarwal, the 32-year-old proprietor of a salon in Kemps Corner has been recently playing doc in addition to her role as hairstylist. Several of her customers who drop in for a haircut have complained of excessive hair fall, poor texture and brittle strands. After a quick chat about whether they suffer from thyroid or polycystic ovaries, or if they are on an extreme diet, Aggarwal suggests they go in for a vitamin B12 deficiency test. "So many of them have returned to tell me they were in fact, severely deficient in B12," she says. Dr Sadanand Naik is hardly surprised. The head of bio-chemistry at KEM Hospital, Pune, has been researching the malaise among urban Indians. A 2010 study conducted among middle-class men in Pune revealed that 81 per cent were B12 deficient. A follow up study that he and his team of researchers conducted earlier this year among 120 young post-graduate male and female students from Pune, all vegetarian or whose diet did not include food of animal origin, found half the subjects to be deficient in the vitamin. Professor and head of neurology at KEM Hospital in Mumbai, Dr Sangeeta Ravat sees an average of four B12 deficient patients a week. Vitamin B12, an essential micronutrient, plays a crucial role in the formation of red blood cells and maintaining the health of the nerve tissue. It's what the body needs if it mustn't fall prey to anemia. Efficient functioning of the central nervous system that's responsible for maintaining alertness and memory recall also requires healthy doses of B12. Neuroscientists say B12 has built a reputation for elevating the mood, since it helps manufacture neurotransmitters like monoamines that help regulate the mood, and reduce incidence of depression and anxiety. It's about what you eat Mumbai-based nutritionist Pooja Singhania says the deficiency is marked by gradual but distinctive symptoms, and is born out of dietary habits. Non-vegetarian food (meat, eggs, fish), milk and dairy products are the only dietary sources of B12 for humans. Vegetarians are at a higher risk, say experts. Although milk

and milk products are available to them to meet their B12 requirements, they don't consume enough. Dr Naik suggests vegetarians consume four glasses of milk a day in the following ways: Drink one glass of milk, have a bowl of yoghurt along with lunch, down a glass of buttermilk around evening, and drink another glass of milk before bedtime. Dr Ashish Babhulkar, a Pune based

A deficiency of Vitamin D3, which is tough to detect due to inert symptoms, often leads to a drop in B12. Here's why. A D3 deficiency interrupts the absorption of calcium by the body. Since calcium is crucial for transporting B12 to the stomach, although you may be consuming sufficient meat and eggs, if your body is deficient in D3, chances are that you will suffer a drop in B12 too shoulder and joint replacement surgeon, says it's important that the milk you drink be plain and devoid of supplements or chocolate flavoring. At the helm of a sevenyear-old research into vitamin B12 deficiency among urban Indians, Dr Babhulkar says, he has witnessed a rise in incidence of muscular skeletal problems. "B12 is crucial for nerve nutrition, and plays a key role in neuromuscular transmission. It therefore determines how strong or weak your muscles will be." Pigmentation and tell-tale signs The symptoms of this deficiency often overlap with those of other diseases. "Often, women also show signs of hypothyroidism," says Dr Babhulkar. Look out for signs of fatigue, skin pigmentation, memory loss, tingling in the limbs, cramps, giddiness, palpitations, mouth ulcers and loss of energy. "Neurons need B12 for growth and maintenance. Patients could experience tingling on their soles, and can lose balance in the dark," says Dr Ravat. The only way to find out if you are deficient, say experts, is to run frequent blood tests. If your deficiency isn't alarming, you will be prescribed a routine supplement in tablet form. Steeply low levels may require B12 injections. New disease caused by B12 deficiency

How diseases affect immune function Cont'd from page 38

Before this study, researchers had a fairly good idea of how to find and study the blood stem cells of the bone marrow. The stem cells live forever, reproduce themselves and give rise to all the cells of the blood. In the process, the stem cells divide and produce intermediate stages of development called progenitors, which make various blood lineages like red blood cells or platelets. Crooks was most interested in the creation of the progenitors that form the entire immune system, which consists of many different cells called lymphocytes, each with a specialized function to fight infection. "Like the stem cells, the progenitor cells are also very rare, so before we can study them we needed to find the needle in the haystack." said Lisa Kohn, a member of the

The latest news surrounding vitamin B12 deficiency is the discovery of a new genetic disease related to it. This new discovery is expected to help doctors better diagnose this rare genetic disorder and open the door to new treatments. Vitamin B12 is essential to human health but some people have inherited conditions that leave them unable to process it. "We found that a second trans-

UCLA Medical Scientist Training Program and first author in the paper. Previous work had found a fairly mature type of lymphocyte progenitor with a limited ability to differentiate, but the new work describes a more primitive type of progenitor primed to produce the entire immune system, Kohn said Once the lymphoid primed progenitor had been identified, Crooks and her team studied how gene expression changed during the earliest stages of its production from stem cells. "The gene expression data convinced us that we had found a unique stage of development in the immune system. There was a set of genes that the lymphoidprimed cell shares with the bone marrow stem cells and a unique gene expression of its own once it becomes active." -zeenews.india.com

port protein was involved in the uptake of the vitamin into the cells, thus providing evidence of another cause of hereditary vitamin B12 deficiency," Dr David Rosenblatt, one of the study's co-authors from McGill University, said. "It is also the first description of a new genetic disease associated with how vitamin B12 is handled by the body," he said. In previous work, the researchers discovered that vitamin B12 enters our cells with help from of a specific

transport protein. In this study, they were working independently with two patients showing symptoms of the cblF gene defect of vitamin B12 metabolism but without an actual defect in this gene. Their work led to the discovery of a new gene, ABCD4, associated with the transport of B12 and responsible for a new disease called cblJ combined homocystinuria and methylmalonic aciduria (cblJHcy-MMA). The B12 and Vitamin D3 connect A deficiency of Vitamin D3, which is tough to detect due to inert symptoms, often leads to a drop in B12. Here's why. A D3 deficiency interrupts the absorption of calcium by the body. Since calcium is crucial for transporting B12 to the stomach, although you may be consuming sufficient meat and eggs, if your body is deficient in D3, chances are that you will suffer a drop in B12 too. Antibiotics and antacids to blame Sometimes, although your diet provides sufficient intake of B12, the micronutrient isn't absorbed due to the absence of what's called the intrinsic factor - a protein that carries B12 to the stomach. Since most urban Indians depend on antibiotics to cure a variety of ailments, they often suffer from acidity, and end up taking antacids. Antacids prevent vitamin B12 absorption.- Courtesy Times of India


In Brief Free immigration services in New York City NEW YORK: Council Speaker Christine Quinn says free legal immigration services will be offered around New York City. It's part of a new $600,000 partnership with the City University of New York. The ``Citizenship Now!'' initiative will offer services at 30 locations starting Oct. 1. Quinn said that strength comes from diversity. She spoke at a breakfast before the West Indian Day Parade in Brooklyn. -AP

Bill urges more illegal workers to pay taxes SACRAMENTO, Calif.: California lawmakers have approved legislation that would allow illegal immigrants to voluntarily join a program and pay state income taxes in exchange for leniency in their immigration status. The state Assembly approved SB901 on a 42-30 vote, sending it to the governor. Supporters say encouraging more illegal immigrants to pay taxes could generate an extra $300 million annually, but the state Franchise Tax Board said the legislation would likely have no effect on state revenue. Workers would need to meet certain criteria and apply to the state to be part of the program. In exchange, California would ask the federal government to put them in the lowest tier of immigration enforcement. -AP

Immigration bill divides Calif. sheriffs SANTA ANA, Calif.: California sheriffs are divided over a bill aimed at protecting certain illegal immigrants from deportation. Some say if Gov. Jerry Brown signs the measure they'll be forced to choose between enforcing it or abiding by a conflicting federal mandate. The Trust Act passed by the Legislature would limit the state's participation in the federal Secure Communities program, which checks the immigration status of people who are arrested. The program is touted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement as a vital crime-fighting tool but reviled by immigrant advocates who say it erodes immigrants' trust in police. -AP

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Indian jailed in UK for major visa fraud LONDON: An Indian citizen who tried to submit hundreds of fraudulent British visa applications has been sentenced to four years and nine months in prison and faces deportation to India. Detais on page 42

US immigration policy, state rules vex IU students BLOOMINGTON, Ind.: Omar Gama hopes to one day be a bank manager or a CEO. His twin brother, Erick, wants to be an interior designer in Chicago. But, first, they need to graduate - a task, they said, that has become difficult after a 2011 Indiana law began requiring students to verify their citizenship. The law prevents students like the Gamas, who came from Mexico but have lived in Indiana since fifth grade, from paying in-state tuition. ``I know my parents pay taxes, so they are paying taxes toward IU, but we don't get to pay in-state tuition,'' Erick told The HeraldTimes. ``We have been here over half of our lifetime.'' The brothers' struggle to complete their degrees highlights a gap between the reach of President Barack Obama's new immigration policy and what decisions are still left up to individual states like Indiana. Under the new federal rules, which went into effect Aug. 15, the Gamas can now apply for two-year work permits. The program also prioritizes deporting dangerous criminals, while offering deferment to young immigrants who have no

Omar Gama and Erick

The story Erick and Omar wished to share with Daniels began in 2002. Their parents brought the brothers to Indiana because their father had serious concerns about Mexico's education system criminal record and who are in school or serving in the military. But whether an immigrant who can't prove citizenship can pay instate tuition or get a driver's li-

cense are decisions still left up to the state. The policy addresses two fears the Gamas said they have lived with most of their lives: being de-

ported to a country they barely remember, and losing their chance at a good education. On May 9, 2011, both of these fears became very real possibilities. The brothers, along with three other students, were arrested after staging a short sit-in at Gov. Mitch Daniels' office in Indianapolis. Daniels was set to approve the new law requiring the citizenship verification. ``The whole idea was just to talk to Governor Daniels about our story and how signing the law would affect our lives and all the lives of undocumented students,'' Omar said. The story Erick and Omar wished to share with Daniels began in 2002. Their parents brought the brothers to Indiana because their father had serious concerns about Mexico's education system, Omar said. After struggling at first to learn English, the brothers began excelling in school and were both accepted to IU. Completing college, the Gamas said, would be the culmination of everything they and their parents have worked toward and risked for more than a decade. Cont’d on page 43

USCIS forms & instructions for deferred action CYRUS D. MEHTA

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S Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has released forms, instructions, and additional information relevant to the deferred action for childhood arrivals process. USCIS has begun accepting requests for consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals. As background, on June 15, 2012, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano announced that certain young people who came to the United States as children and meet other key guidelines may be eligible, on a case-by-case basis, to receive deferred action. USCIS is finalizing a process by which potentially eligible individuals may request consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals.

At a stakeholder meeting on August 14, USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas said that the agency will not share information about applicants and their families with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for en-

The Form I-821D, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, will be used for those who are considered for relief from removal from the United States or from being placed into removal proceedings as part of the

Those who submit requests with USCIS and demonstrate that they meet the threshold guidelines may have removal action in their case deferred forcement purposes. USCIS has submitted information collection requests to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for "emergency" consideration related to the new deferred action program.

deferred action for childhood arrivals process. Those who submit requests with USCIS and demonstrate that they meet the threshold guidelines may have removal action in their case deferred for a period of two years, subject to re-

newal (if not terminated), based on an individualized, case-by-case assessment of the individual's equities. USCIS estimates that 1,041,300 respondents will use this form and that it will take 2 hours and 45 minutes to complete. The OMB notice for this form, which includes instructions on submitting comments, is available at http:// www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR2012-08-16/pdf/2012-20247.pdf. Comments will be accepted until September 17, 2012. USCIS also has submitted an emergency request to the OMB for a revision of Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization. The OMB notice for this form, which includes instructions Cont’d on page 43


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Oz eases tourist visa rules for parents of citizens in place by the end of this year. "Tourist visa grants will be considered on a case-by-case basis and will enable parents to spend more time in Australia with their families while they wait for a parent visa," Bowen said.

"These changes recognize the valuable role parents play in assisting their children and grandchildren in Australia and the social benefits such visits provide" Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Chris Bowen

MELBOURNE: In a good news for Indians settled in Australia, the Julia Gillard government has relaxed tourist visa rules for parents of Australian citizens and permanent residents to enable them to visit their families in this country for longer duration. Announcing the changes, Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Chris Bowen said, "I know that many people are patiently waiting in the queue for a parent visa so we want to provide more generous tourist visas to enable regular extended family visits. "The government will grant

five-year tourist visas with a 12month stay on each entry to suitable applicants who have applied for a parent visa outside Australia," he said. It will also consider tourist visas of up to three years with a 12month stay on each entry for people not currently in the parent visa queue, Bowen said. "These changes recognize the valuable role parents play in assisting their children and grandchildren in Australia and the social benefits such visits provide," he said. The changes are expected to be

"To be granted a tourist visa, applicants must meet Australia's health and character requirements, have access to adequate funds, have health insurance to cover any healthcare costs during their stay, and intend a genuine visit to Australia," he said. Tourist visa holders will be subject to a visa condition limiting applications for further visas while they are in Australia. As with all tourist visa holders, they will be expected to spend some time outside Australia between visits to their families, according to an official statement. -PTI

UK varsity to challenge license revocation LONDON: A London-based university whose license to admit and teach Indian and other nonEU students was revoked recently, has decided to mount a legal challenge against the decision taken by Britain's immigration officials. The London Metropolitan

instructed solicitors to launch "urgent legal action to challenge the revocation so that its students can return to study as a matter of urgency". The statement said that LMU decided to launch legal proceedings "in the strongest possible

"It is not in anyone's interests for there to be a system in place which constantly changes and which forces universities, their management and their staff automatically to treat students with suspicion until proven otherwise" University's license was revoked by the UK Border Agency due to what it called 'serious and systemic failures'. The decision affects 359 Indian students, who are among nearly 2,600 non-EU students enrolled at the university. LMU vice-chancellor Malcolm Gillies said in a statement after a meeting of the university's board of governors last night, that it had

terms" after reading the UKBA report on the revocation and the 'evidence'. The statement mentioned several points to deny wrong-doing on the university's part. Gillies said: "London Met will fight this revocation, which is based on a highly flawed report by the UKBA. "The University will continue to give top priority to the inter-

ests of our international students who have been so distressed by this precipitate action." LMU said there was "no evidence of systemic failings", as claimed by UKBA, and added that the UKBA's claim that the university "did not address serious and systemic failings that we identified 6 months ago" was simply not true. The LMU statement said: "The UK has a long-standing reputation of educational excellence and for attracting genuine students from a diverse international market. "It is not in anyone's interests for there to be a system in place which constantly changes and which forces universities, their management and their staff automatically to treat students with suspicion until proven otherwise". It added: "London Met is concerned that the current immigration policy is creating confusion across universities in the country and irrevocable damage to the UK's globally-recognized education sector". -PTI

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Appeals court to decide immigration case BOWLING GREEN, Ky.: Imprisoned drug offender Jose Padilla won a 2010 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that said his attorney erred in failing to warn him about of the possibility of deportation after a guilty plea, but Padilla has been unable so far to take advantage of the widely cited decision that bears his name. His attorneys have asked the Kentucky Court of Appeals to toss out Padilla's guilty plea to transporting 1,000 pounds of marijuana. Public defender Tim Arnold told a three-judge panel that Padilla made an irrational decision based on erroneous information from his attorney. Padilla, a native of Honduras who is a permanent legal resident of the United States, in 2001 accepted five years in prison and five years of probation instead of going to trial. His attorney at the time told Padilla that deportation wasn't a concern, even though federal law makes removal from the country automatic for some felonies. An acquittal in the case would have meant that Padilla wouldn't face deportation. ``He didn't know he was going to be deported,'' Arnold told the judges. ``This is not a case where

to the guilty plea. Only later, Arnold said, after being paroled from state prison did Padilla learn he was going to be returned to Honduras. The U.S. Supreme Court found his attorney's advice unconstitutionally bad in a case that has made an impact on plea

Jose Padilla

he was offered a sweetheart deal.'' Assistant Attorney General William Long countered that despite his attorney's bad advice, the defendant had to make a rational decision about whether to accept a plea or go to trial. In this case, Padilla made such a decision, Long said. ``It's easy to be somewhat sympathetic to Padilla,'' Long said. ``But, the evidence against him was overwhelming.'' Padilla, a U.S. military veteran

who received an honorable discharge after serving in Vietnam, was driving 32,000 pounds of cargo from California to Illinois. For unexplained reasons, he passed through Kentucky and was stopped in Hardin County, near Elizabethtown. A police search of his truck turned up 23 boxes of marijuana stacked near the rear of his load. After being told that deportation wasn't an issue, Padilla agreed

Padilla, a native of Honduras who is a permanent legal resident of the United States, in 2001 accepted five years in prison and five years of probation instead of going to trial agreements and immigration cases around the country. The high court sent Padilla's case back for a determination about whether the bad advice resulted in his making a decision that couldn't be considered rational. Hardin Circuit Judge Kelly Easton ruled that Padilla made a reasonable decision to take a plea, despite the errant advice from his

attorney. Padilla appealed, hoping to withdraw the guilty plea and work out a deal that wouldn't result in deportation. The appellate panel, meeting at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, appeared skeptical that Padilla would have pleaded guilty to the top count of the indictment without some sort of guarantee from prosecutors. ``I can't imagine any circumstances ... why you would agree to that deal,'' Judge Donna Dixon said. ``I wouldn't take that deal.'' ``Presumably, a life outside this country would be preferable to a life in the penitentiary,'' Long replied. Judge Kelly Thompson questioned why Padilla, who has lived in the United States for more than 40 years, hasn't sought citizenship. ``I guess now he wishes he got his citizenship after all these years,'' Thompson said. ``Obviously, he would make a different decision if he had to do it again,'' Arnold said, noting that Padilla has six children. ``If he was to be deported, it would be the end of his family unit. They would not be able to travel to see him and he would not be able to travel to see them.'' -AP

Immigration official resigns amid Indian jailed in UK for misconduct claim major visa fraud WASHINGTON: A senior Obama administration political appointee and longtime aide to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has resigned amid allegations of inappropriate sexual behavior lodged by at least three Immigration and Customs Enforcement employees. Suzanne Barr, chief of staff to ICE Director John Morton, said in her resignation letter that the allegations against her are ``unfounded.'' But she said she was stepping down anyway to end distractions within the agency. ICE, a division of the Homeland Security Department, confirmed Barr had resigned. The Associated Press obtained a copy of Barr's letter. Barr is accused of sexually inappropriate behavior toward employees. The complaints are related to a sexual discrimination and retaliation lawsuit filed by a senior ICE agent in May. In her letter to Morton, Barr said she has been the subject of ``unfounded allegations designed to destroy my reputation'' and is resigning ``with great regret.'' ``Of greater concern however,

is the threat these allegations represent to the reputation of this agency and the men and women who proudly serve their country by advancing ICE's mission,'' Barr wrote. ``As such, I feel it is incumbent upon me to take every step necessary to prevent further harm to the agency and to prevent this from further distracting from our critical work.''

Suzanne Barr, chief of staff to ICE Director John Morton, said in her resignation letter that the allegations against her are “unfounded� Barr went on leave last month after the New York Post reported on the lawsuit filed by James T. Hayes Jr., ICE's special agent in charge in New York. Additional employees came forward with their allegations around the same time. U.S. Rep. Peter King, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said in a statement that

Barr's resignation ``raises the most serious questions about management practices and personnel policies at the Department of Homeland Security.'' He said his committee will continue to review the case and personnel practices at DHS. In one complaint, Barr is accused of telling a male subordinate he was ``sexy'' and asking a personal question about his anatomy during an office party. In a separate complaint, she is accused of offering to perform a sex act with a male subordinate during a business trip to Bogota, Colombia. She's also accused of calling a male subordinate from her hotel room and offering to perform a sex act. The names of two of Barr's accusers were censored in affidavits reviewed by AP. Homeland Security's office of professional responsibility and inspector general have been investigating the allegations. Prior to the lawsuit, there were no complaints about Barr, according to a homeland security official who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the matter. -AP

LONDON: An Indian citizen who tried to submit hundreds of fraudulent British visa applications has been sentenced to four years and nine months in prison and faces deportation to India. Bhavin Shah, 34, of Edgbaston Road in Watford pleaded guilty to charges of conspiring to defraud the Home Office, giving immigration advice illegally and money laundering during the first day of his trial at Isleworth crown court. Operating from his business premises in Trinity House, Wembley and Viglan House, Alperton, Shah charged clients between 3,000 pounds and 5,000 pounds to process their applications for visa extensions, even though he was not a registered immigration advisor or solicitor, a UK Border Agency statement said. The statement added that Shah would then use forged bank statements and qualification certificates to support their applications, often without the knowledge of the applicant. Some of these documents were found on computers seized from his addresses during UKBA raids in November 2011. Those raids followed information supplied by an undercover newspaper reporter, to whom Shah

had boasted about how he could circumvent the system. Financial investigations showed that Shah had transferred around 300,000 pounds to bank accounts in India. Paul Tansiri, who led the investi-

Operating from his business premises in Trinity House, Wembley and Viglan House, Alperton, Shah charged clients between 3,000 pounds and 5,000 pounds to process their applications for visa extensions gation for the UK BorderAgency, said: "Shah was a conman who thought he could cheat the system. He also thought he could cheat his clients, many of whom went to him in good faith hoping he could help them". He added: "Not only will Shah face deportation after serving his sentence, we have also begun Proceeds of Crime Act proceedings to prevent him from benefiting financially from his crimes." -PTI


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USCIS forms & instructions for deferred action Cont’d from page 40

on submitting comments, is available at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/ pkg/FR-2012-08-16/pdf/201220251.pdf. Comments will be accepted until September 17, 2012. Individuals requesting consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals must submit: • Form I-821D, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) • Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization (with accompanying fees; the total is $465, including the biometrics fee and issuance of a secure employment authorization document; and • I-765WS Worksheet (to establish economic need for employment) USCIS recently developed a series of related resources, including a website, available at http:// www.uscis.gov/childhoodarrivals. ICE agents file lawsuit Meanwhile, a group of 10 U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents have filed a lawsuit against the new deferred

action directive on undocumented childhood arrivals. The agents argue that the new program forces them to violate immigration law. Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, an advisor to Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, is representing the agents in the lawsuit filed in federal court in Dallas, Texas, against Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security, and John Morton, ICE Director. The lawsuit is receiving financial support from NumbersUSA. "This Directive not only circumvents Congress, it also infringes on the plaintiffs' ability to fulfill the oath they made to uphold the laws of this country. The plaintiffs seek to prevent law enforcement officers from being forced to either violate federal law if they comply with the Directive or risk adverse employment action if they disobey the unlawful orders of the DHS Secretary," Secretary Kobach said. Also, Texas Governor Rick Perry sent a letter to Greg Abbott, Texas Attorney General, asserting

that Secretary Napolitano's action was "a slap in the face to the rule of law and our Constitutional framework of separated powers" and "unilaterally undermine[s] the law." Governor Perry said he was

The platform opposes "any form of amnesty." It supports the mandatory use of the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) program before granting any State or federal government entitlement or IRS refund. writing to ensure that "all Texas agencies understand that Secretary Napolitano's actions confer absolutely no legal status whatsoever" to anyone who qualifies for deferred action. "In Texas, our legislature has passed laws that

US immigration policy, state rules vex IU students Cont’d from page 40

But the brothers did not get the chance to share that story with Daniels. After the group, who were all wearing graduation gowns, decided to stay seated until the governor would meet with them, they were arrested for trespassing.

The Gamas were not deported, and their sentence was deferred upon the condition they take a class and complete 24 hours of community service. While they were in jail, HB 1402 was signed into law. The Gamas' tuition, which they pay for out of pocket, more than doubled. The brothers became part-time

The Gamas spent nearly three days in custody. They learned during that time that Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers considered deporting them. “Through all of it, all I kept thinking about was my education,'' Erick said. “About how it was going to go to waste. I was getting deported from home and my education'' ``They took us through the back so our supporters in the lobby couldn't see us, and they put us in vans and took us to the processing center,'' Erick said. The Gamas spent nearly three days in custody. They learned during that time that Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers considered deporting them. ``Through all of it, all I kept thinking about was my education,'' Erick said. ``About how it was going to go to waste. I was getting deported from home and my education.''

students at IU and took some of their classes online with Ivy Tech Community College. Now beginning their senior year, the Gamas said they know they won't graduate on time. Omar has moved back home to Indianapolis to save money by taking cheaper classes at IUPUI while living with his parents. When he completes the required courses also offered at IUPUI, he plans to return to IU, where he was studying public management. Erick remains at IU studying interior design. Both are still part-

time students. They have received some help, Erick said. They each received $500 after people heard about their arrests. Boxcar Books, a nonprofit bookstore in Bloomington, gives students who can't prove citizenship free textbooks. ``It's a big help,'' Erick said. Erick and Omar both plan on applying to the new program for work permits, but they said they would have kept working toward their degrees even without a guaranteed chance at a job. ``Even some of my family back in Mexico asked me what I was going to do after college without a permit,'' Omar said. ``I was like, `You know what? I'll worry about that after college.' I wanted to finish my education. I knew I wanted to have my degree.'' -AP

reflect the policy choices that they believe are right for Texas. The secretary's directive does not undermine or change our state laws, or any federal laws that apply within the State of Texas," he said. Republican Party Platform Supports More STEM Visas and Includes Consideration of Guestworker Provision The Republican Party's platform for 2012, which was formally approved at the Republican National Convention in August, supports granting more work visas to holders of advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) from other nations. The platform also supports encouraging foreign students who graduate from an American university with an advanced STEM degree to remain in the United States. The platform also states that a Republican administration and Congress would partner with local governments through cooperative enforcement agreements and "will consider, in light of both current needs and historic practice, the utility of a legal and reliable source of foreign labor where needed through a new guest worker program." The platform states that the presence of "millions of unidentified persons" poses grave risks to the safety and sovereignty of the United States. "Our highest priority, therefore, is to secure the rule of law both at our borders and at ports of entry." The platform supports Republican legislation to give the Department of Homeland Security long-term detention authority "to keep dangerous but undeportable aliens off our streets," along with expediting expulsion of criminal aliens and making gang membership a deportable offense. The platform opposes "any form of amnesty." It supports the mandatory use of the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) program before granting any State or federal government entitlement or IRS refund. The platform "insist[s] upon enforcement at the workplace through verification systems so that jobs can be available to all legal workers. Use

of the E-Verify program - an Internet-based system that verifies the employment authorization and identity of employees - must be made mandatory nationwide." The platform also supports state enforcement efforts in the workplace. "State efforts to reduce illegal immigration must be encouraged, not attacked," the platform says. "The pending Department of Justice lawsuits against Arizona, Alabama, South Carolina, and Utah must be dismissed immediately. The double-layered fencing on the border that was enacted by Congress in 2006, but never completed, must finally be built. In order to restore the rule of law, federal funding should be denied to sanctuary cities that violate federal law and endanger their own citizens, and federal funding should be denied to universities that provide in-state tuition rates to illegal aliens, in open defiance of federal law." The platform also supports English as the nation's official language. USCIS Releases Guidance on Accommodating Religious Beliefs When Capturing Photographs and Fingerprints U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently released policy guidance on accommodating religious beliefs during fingerprint and photograph capture. Among other things, the guidance notes that USCIS will accommodate an individual who wears headwear as part of his or her religious practices. Religious headwear may be worn if a reasonable likeness can be obtained from an individual, the full face is visible, and the religious headwear does not cast a shadow on the face. If removal of headwear or adjustments are needed, such as a same-gender photographer or fingerprint-taker, USCIS will offer a private or screened area, if available. If such an area is not available, USCIS will offer to reschedule the appointment.

* Cyrus D Mehta, may be contacted at 212-425-0555 or info@cyrusmehta.com


„

Realty Tidbits

Rangmahal housing society scam: 11 get jail NEW DELHI: A Delhi court has sentenced 11 persons to varying prison terms handed in one of the criminal and corruption cases pertaining to the Rs 4000-crore cooperative group housing scheme scam. Special CBI judge Vinod Kumar sentenced scam kingpin and former Registrar Cooperative Societies Narayan Diwakar to a year in jail. Jt Registrar Jasbeer Singh, Assistant Registrar (Audit) Jitender Sharma, Assistant Registrar Ramesh Chandra, Dealing Assistant Rakesh Kumar and RCS Inspector Faiz Mohd, 71, and one P K Thirvani too were sentenced to a year in jail each.

„ Metro's wrong turn at Nehru Place NEW DELHI: One of the big commercial business districts in Delhi, Nehru Place, would seem to be the ideal location for a public transit hub. Not for Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC). In a move that has surprised traffic experts, Delhi Metro has decided to make Kalkaji - the next station on the line - its interchange station in Phase III. Surprisingly, though, it will build a second station at Nehru Place, less than 500 meters from the existing station. And to make matters worse, it will not provide any connectivity between the two stations at Nehru Place.

„ Farmers may be told to return money for land

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he Allahabad district administration is examining the possibility of issuing notices to farmers who had accepted compensation after their land was acquired for the proposed 1,980 MW Karchhana power plant, asking them to return the compensation amount and get their land back. On April 13, the high court had quashed the acquisition of around 2,550 bighas for the project in 10 villages of Karchchana tehsil for wrong use of urgency clause. It had said that the farmers could get their land back by returning the compensation money to the district administration. So far, none of the 1,900odd farmers has come forward to claim his land back.

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Check Corporation website before buying land PUNE: The Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) has uploaded details of land reservations on its website for the benefit of people willing to buy property here. Information about no development zones and land falling in floodline areas will also be uploaded. Pratibha Bhadane, deputy director, town planning department, said, "People from different parts of the country migrate to Pimpri Chinchwad in search of jobs. They may wish to buy property here but do not know about reservations in the development plan, floodline areas, no-development zones and land reserved for roads.

Delhi Master Plan 2021: City's skyline may go the Shanghai way NEW DELHI: Delhi's skyline could resemble Manhattan's or Shanghai's if urban development minister Kamal Nath has his way. The minister has mooted virtualization of Delhi in the new master plan for 2021 by allowing higher floor area ratio in the city, which is expected to increase housing stock considerably and rejuvenate some old commercial areas. "Property prices in Delhi are too high today and the only way they can come down are by increasing supply," says Anshuman Magazine, chairman and managing director (south Asia) at property advisory firm CB Richard Ellis. Property rates in Delhi, especially in the south and central parts, today are comparable to those in cities like New York and London. As the city has grown to a population of 17 million, these unsustainable prices and lack of vertical development have pushed home buyers towards new urban conglomerations around the city like Noida, Gurgoan, Ghaziabad, Faridabad and beyond. Today, the average property prices in Delhi are at least two to three times that

Kamal Nath has mooted higher floor area ratio, which is expected to boost housing stock & revive some old commercial areas.

in Gurgaon and Noida. Delhi currently has an FAR of 1.2 (and 3.5 for plots under 100 sq meters) for residential and 1-1.5 for

paratively more at 1.75 and Hyderabad has allowed unlimited FAR if certain conditions like providing adequate parking are met.

What has stopped the Delhi government from allowing higher FAR is the possible strain on infrastructure, like roads, water, power, sewerage that will follow such densification commercial compared to 13 in Shanghai and 15 in New York and Manhattan. Noida too has a higher FAR of 3, Gurgaon allows com-

The tallest building today in Delhi is the Municipal Corporation of Delhi's Civic Centre with 28 floors. In comparison, Supertech

is building an 80-storey building in Noida. In Manhattan, the famous Empire State Building, which was completed in 1931, has 102 floors. FAR is the ratio of the total floor area of a building to the plot area and the concept behind it is utilization of land in the most optimal manner. Today, many people travel to Delhi for work as the overall population density has been spread over a larger area. "Delhi has failed to give housing to the common man due to limitations on FAR and density norms. It also aided in the creation of slums. If FAR is freed, land cost for development will come down, bringing down property prices," says Navin Raheja, president of the National Real Estate Development Council and a developer with projects in both Delhi and Gurgaon. So far, what has stopped the Delhi government from allowing higher FAR is the possible strain on infrastructure, like roads, water, power, sewerage that will follow such densification, but that worry still remains. Cont’d on page 45

Delay in flats transfer hits Himachal real estate

H

imachal Pradesh has spiked plans of over 60 builders and developers to sell flats and cottages in the hill state. The developers include DLF, Janta Land Promoter Ltd, Omaxe Construction Pvt Ltd, Optima Con-

He said a new comprehensive legislation would be introduced for urban development and regional planning. "Until such time that the new law is enacted, no registrations, essentiality certificates and li-

The Apartment Act was brought into place by the previous Congress government and enables builders to construct and sell flats in various categories struction Pvt Ltd, Amar Nath Aggarwal Builders Pvt Ltd and Surya Builders, according to officials. Town and Country Planning Minister Mohinder Singh asked the assembly Aug 29 to repeal the Himachal Pradesh Apartment and Property Regulation Act of 2005.

censes are to be issued (to the realtors) or renewed under the act with immediate effect," he said. The Apartment Act was brought into place by the previous Congress government and enables builders to construct and sell flats in various categories.

Mohinder Singh said that no new registrations of flats or cottages being constructed by private builders would be done till the new act comes into force. They had earlier been permitted to build houses under the apartment act. Even the transfer of flats con-

structed by state-run Himachal Pradesh Urban Development Authority (HIMUDA) has been halted. "Those who got their properties registered on or before Aug 29 are valid," the minister added. Cont’d on page 45


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LIC HF plans to increase loan disbursal to developers

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IC Housing Finance, a subsidiary of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) plans to disburse around 8-10 percent of its total loan portfolio to developers by the end of this fiscal, a top company official said. "Presently, around 6 percent of our total loan portfolio constitutes of developer loan. We plan to increase it to 8-10 percent in the current financial year," Director and Chief Executive Officer of LIC HF, V K Sharma said. He, however, said the housing finance firm would not aggressively push this portfolio in this fiscal though there is an uptick in the loan disbursements to developers. By the end of June quarter, LIC HF's outstanding loan portfolio was at around Rs

65,650 crore, which was a 24 percent growth over the same period last year. While individual loans constituted 9495 percent of the portfolio, developer loans comprised 5-6 percent of the total amount.

finance industry and to reduce the cost of borrowing for the housing finance companies. Talking about the overall growth projection, he said," Overall growth in loan portfolio is likely to be around 20 percent in the

"Presently, around 6 percent of our total loan portfolio constitutes of developer loan. We plan to increase it to 8-10 percent in the current financial year" Earlier, the housing finance company had said that low developer loan portfolio had put margins under pressure and higher disbursals would increase the margin level. Sharma also said respite in interest rate is necessary to boost the overall housing

current financial year," he said. He also said there is no concern on the asset quality of the NBFC. "There is no concern on the asset quality front. We have a total NPA of only around Rs 400 crore," he said.

Delhi Master Plan 2021: City's skyline may go the Shanghai way Cont’d from page 44

The city's infrastructure is creaking. Infrastructure like power, water and roads are already stretched to the hilt due to decades of poor planning. Many areas in Delhi still face frequent power cuts and shortage of water, both potable and otherwise. Massive traffic snarls are common in most parts of the city that face shortage of road space because of an increase in the population of motor vehicles. Urban development experts warn that if norms are changed and taller buildings are allowed with-

out making a concrete plan to improve infrastructure across the city, it could lead to a worse situation. "We need to get our infrastructure development plan in order before embarking on virtualization. The government could charge for giving higher FAR and that money should be properly utilized to strengthen infrastructure," says Gaurav Jain, a town planner and managing director of Samyak Properties & Infrastructure. Internationally, most such decisions are taken after a thorough study of the infrastructure in a city,

which includes the impact of increasing FAR on traffic, water and power availability and sewerage, says Magazine. Architect Ashok Lall, who works in the field of sustainable urban development feels simply allowing tall buildings everywhere will lead to an unsustainable situation in the city. "Once you go beyond six floors, the energy required to take water, sewerage and people up and down goes up 20%," he says. According to Lall, the optimal, energy-efficient FAR is around 1.2, which is currently allowed in the city.

Delay in flats transfer hits Himachal real estate Cont’d from page 44

Officials said since the apartment act came into effect, the government allowed over 60 realtors to construct apartments, cottages and dwelling units across the state. Most of them are in Shimla and Solan districts. Representatives of builders say the real estate business will virtually come to a halt with the moratorium on property transactions. They say more than 1,000 apartments and cottages, which are near completion, are awaiting transfer in the name of buyers. "What is our fault? We got the permission from the government to constructs cottages. Now when the construction is almost complete, the government has imposed a ban on property transaction. It's totally unjust," said a builder setting up cottages in Kasauli hills of Solan district. He said the ban would hit other upcoming projects too. Another realtor said the reality business would remain dormant for over a year as the tenure of the present BJP government would

end in December. "Till the new act comes into being, the property transactions will remain at a standstill," he added. "The government can now bring an ordinance to provide relief to both the buyers and sellers

"Builders are creating concrete jungles and spoiling the natural forested environment of the state. The demand of Himachalis (to own a flat) can be easily met by HIMUDA� by allowing them to get their properties registered," a senior official of the town and country planning said. Mohinder Singh said the decision to repeal the act had been taken on the basis of the recom-

mendation of the select committee of the assembly as well as a judicial commission headed by Justice D.P. Sood, a former judge of the Himachal Pradesh High Court, probing illegal land transactions. In the report tabled in the assembly in April this year, Sood recommended to the government that the apartment act be immediately withdrawn. "Builders are creating concrete jungles and spoiling the natural forested environment of the state. The demand of Himachalis (to own a flat) can be easily met by HIMUDA; hence no private player should be allowed," Sood said in his 147-page report. The commission observed that the builders were catering to the needs of the rich from Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and non-resident Indians. Under Himachal land laws, only the state's permanent residents can buy land in the state. Others who want to purchase land for non-agricultural purposes have to seek relaxation under section 118 of the tenancy and land reforms law from the government.

Sharma, however, said that the real estate sector was not growing in the country with subdued activity in metro centers like Mumbai, Hyderabad and Bangalore. "Growth is pretty subdued in the metro centers like Mumbai, Bangalore and Hyderabad. However, there is a demand in tier-II and tier-III cities," he said. LIC HF posted a 11 percent drop in its net profit to Rs 228 crore in the first quarter of current financial year on the back of higher interest cost. During Q1, it sanctioned Rs 4,900 crore loans to individuals, a growth of 33 percent over the same period last year. It also sanctioned around Rs 410 crore loans to builders during this period, as against Rs 5 crore in the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal.

Builder can't force redevelopment sans society nod: Court MUMBAI: A housing society cannot be forced to let a builder redevelop its building in the absence of a final agreement between them, the Bombay high court has ruled. Hearing an application filed by builder Gopi Gorwani, a division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice Nitin Jamdar dismissed the plea seeking an order restraining Jeevan Prabha cooperative housing society from dealing with any other builder for redeveloping the Bandra property. "Ultimately the work of redevelopment of a housing society is such that the society must have confidence in its developer," said the judges, adding "Once members of the society had by a unanimous resolution, before executing the final agreement, decided not to get the premises developed through the (builder), the society cannot be forced to get the redevelopment work done through (the developer), when prima facie

there is no concluded contract." Gorwani had dragged the housing society to court alleging breach of agreement. According to the builder, the society had passed two resolutions in March and June 2011, entrusting the redevelopment of the building to him. However, in July 2011, the society passed a resolution in a special general body meeting, saying it did not want the redevelopment to be carried out by Gorwani. The builder rushed to the civil court, which dismissed his plea. Gorwani then approached the HC. The court, however, did not agree with the builder. "Prima facie, the correspondence entered into between the parties indicates that the development agreement between the parties was not signed. Before the agreement could be signed, the society by its July 2012 resolution decided not to continue with the appellant as their developer."


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Sahara will have to sell realty assets to pay off investors

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he Supreme Court has given a 90-day deadline to the Sahara Group to repay over 22 million investors in its bonds. In a verdict dated 31 August, the court confirmed Sebi's order to Sahara India Real Estate Corporation (SIREC) and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation (SHIC) to refund Rs 24,000-andodd crore collected from investors without Sebi's permission along with 15 percent annum interest. The total repayment could exceed Rs 27,000 crore, if all the alleged investors are for real. Will Sahara be able to pull it off? Will it be able to present Sebi with a cheque for Rs 27,000 crore in three months? The answer is it can, provided it liquidates its real estate assets quickly. Looking at a Sahara Group affidavit submitted to the Supreme Court on 4 January 2012, the group's property assets seem to be on a par with DLF's. It is one of the top real estate owners in the country. It seems that bond holders of SIREC and SHIC will be paid off by liquidating a lot of the real estate assets of these two companies - and this will have to be done within less than three months. The market value of Aamby Valley city, a private hill station near Mumbai in Pune, is said to be valued at Rs 40,461 crore. The city is owned by a Sahara Group company Aamby Valley Ltd and its 100 percent subsidiary companies. The question: How did a real estate project bought by the Sahara Group before SIREC and SHIC started selling their bonds in 2008-

09 become part of these two companies? According to a Business Standard report in January this year, SIREC and SHIC showed a book value of Rs 6,687 crore in terms of shares of Aamby Valley owned by them as at the end of June 2010 (also read here). However, the Sahara family may not sell this project fully, because

over 186 acres of prime land in Delhi and Haryana bordering Gurgaon in their affidavit. Its market value is not disclosed, but Sahara had paid Rs 1,436 crore to buy this land to be developed as commercial space and residential apartments, including group housing, branded villas, luxury apartments, club and hotels.

The Saharas have even reached the doorstep of DLF Gurgaon, where DLF has constructed a huge city over 3,000 acres of land. Flexing their real estate muscle, the "Saharas" list a project spread over 186 acres of prime land in Delhi and Haryana it has filed a demerger petition under Section 391/394 of the Companies Act, 1956, with the Bombay High Court on 10 June 2011. The petition is still pending. But that's not the end of it all. The Sahara family owns 90-95 percent stake in special purpose vehicles (partnership firms) having 64 projects in 64 cities/towns throughout India on land admeasuring 4,378 acres. The valuation of the Sahara stake in these companies is pegged at Rs 21,631 crore (before tax), the affidavit, signed by five Sahara members, including the head of the Sahara "family" Subrata Roy Sahara, says. The Saharas have even reached the doorstep of DLF Gurgaon, where DLF has constructed a huge city over 3,000 acres of land. Flexing their real estate muscle, the "Saharas" (as the Supreme Court verdict characterizes the group) list a project spread

There is just no end to the Sahara family's real estate assets spread all over the country. The family has a 33 percent stake in a Versova project spread over 106 acres of land of near Lokhandwala

complex in Mumbai (bought for Rs 1,848 crore); a 40 percent stake in four city home projects in four cities/towns admeasuring 318 acres of land (market value is Rs 888 crore); a 50 percent stake in 15 city home projects in 15 cities/towns over 1,751 acres of land (market value of the Sahara's stake is stated to be Rs 5,192 crore); a 30 percent stake in a 170-acre project in district Lucknow (the Saharas bought it for Rs 1,000 crore); a 100 percent stake by way of holding equity shares of 60 entities having parcels of lands admeasuring 515 acres at 16 locations at various cities/towns in India (the enterprise value of the Sahara shares is Rs 3,138 crore; and 100 percent stakes in two entities holding development rights over two plots of 196 acres and 56 acres at Vasai and Malegaon in Maharashtra (the pre-tax enterprise value is Rs 2,421 crore for the Saharas). However, the key issue is how

much of these real estate assets are owned by the group and how much by the two companies that have been asked to refund OFCD money investors. The Sahara affidavit filed in the apex court points out details submitted to Sebi earlier on 14 September 2011. SIREC is said to have invested Rs 6,430 crore in real estate projects whose market value increased to astronomical heights - Rs 36,000 crore a near six-fold rise! Details submitted before Sebi, however, do not show corresponding increases in the value of the Saharas' cash flow and developmental activities. SIREC has listed current assets, cash and bank balances, development rights on land and projects, advances under joint ventures, etc., the book value of which was pegged at Rs 15,937 crore. The market value of current assets, including cash flow, is shown as Rs 20,297 crore.

Members will not charge more from Noida Extension buyers: CREDAI

W

e have decided not to charge any extra money from the existing buyers," Amrapali Chairman and Managing Director Anil Sharma said. Sharma is a member of CREDAI's Western UP chapter. The response of CREDAI comes after Noida Extension Flat Owners Welfare Association (NEFOWA) had refused to pay the hike in rate as was being proposed by various firms. In Noida Extension, about 2.5

lakh homes were being developed by some prominent developers like Amrapali and Gaursons among others. Nearly 1.5 lakh flats have already been sold. Flat buyers in Noida Extension heaved a sigh of relief with the National Capital Region Planning Board giving its nod to the Draft Master Plan for Greater Noida - 2021 on August 24. The Allahabad High Court had stayed construction in Noida Ex-

tension, which is a part of Greater Noida, and directed the Greater Noida Authority to seek approval of its Draft plan from the NCR Planning Board. The Board, which is chaired by Union Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath, has approved the Draft Master Plan with the understanding that the earlier recommendations made by the NCRPB technical committee would be incorporated in the plan, officials said.

Rs 500-crore land scam unearthed in Faridabad village

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n alleged land scandal worth more than Rs 500 crore has come to light in Kot village of the district, highlighting an unholy nexus between government officials and the land mafia. Though the scam took place in 2008-09, the matter has come to light now in the wake of recent correspondence between the authorities in the matter. No one has been made accountable in the case yet though documentary evidence (in possession of The Tribune) shows that the authorities concerned knew about it. Revenue officials allegedly illegally transferred more than 2,500 acres of shamlat deh land in the village to private persons. The land was characterized as "gair mumkin pahaar", which cannot be used for agriculture or residential purposes. This is a hilly stretch of the Aravalis. Shamlat deh is a common land in a village. A common pool is carved out by taking away a portion of holdings of landowners at the time of the settlement. The original owners and their descendants lose pro-

prietary rights on shamlat deh. Officials allegedly tampered with the revenue record to create new illegal "record of rights" pertaining to the land in favor of the descendants of original owners. Subsequent to the transfers of ownership rights, the beneficiaries sold a major portion of the land as farmhouses. Significantly, reg-

panchayat also did not raise any objection when the fraud and subsequent mutations in favor of the beneficiaries was enacted. In this particular case it is possible that the then District Collector and the Subdivisional Magistrate (SDM) may not have been taken in the loop by lower officials. However, they will have a lot to ex-

Revenue officials allegedly illegally transferred more than 2,500 acres of shamlat deh land in the village to private persons. The land was characterized as "gair mumkin pahaar", which cannot be used for agriculture or residential purposes istries of the sale and purchase of land was allowed by the revenue authorities. The then patwari allegedly tampered with the records which were vetted and attested by the kanungo and tehsildar concerned. As per the rules, the final authority to allow changes in the record vests with the District Collector. Significantly, members of the village

plain in this case. Balraj Singh, Deputy Commissioner, Faridabad, who took charge recently, said, "I am seized of the matter and action will be taken against those found guilty." When specifically asked as to who would be made accountable in the case, he did not give a direct reply. The extent of the scam can be ascertained

from the fact that the present market value of the land in Kot village is more than Rs 20 lakh per acre. A new dimension was added to the scam when the Director, Consolidation of Holding, Haryana, issued a controversial notification in December last year to conduct "consolidation" of 3,184 acres, including the chunk forming gair mumkin pahaar, in Kot. Subsequently, it was annulled by the Director-General, Consolidation of Holding, Haryana, vide his August 23 order. In the order, the Director-General reasoned, "The aims and objects of the Consolidation Act were to consolidate landholdings for the prevention of the fragmentation of holdings and for the reservation of land for common purpose of the village." The order further said the object of the Consolidation Act would be "defeated' in case gair mumkin pahaar is included in the scheme of consolidation. It also reads, "The consolidation would wrongly benefit certain influential outsider-purchasers of gair mumkin pahaar."


September 14, 2012

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T

o an ordinary man, life constitutes actions, perceptions, thoughts and feelings - one of these alone being experienced at any given time. In other words, you stand detached from all activities, excepting the one in which you seem engaged at the given time. To this list of four categories (actions, perceptions, thoughts and feelings), the spiritual man adds just one more, which indeed is the most important one: 'Consciousness'. This last one is doubly important; because, over and above its importance as a separate entity, it shines in and through the four categories already mentioned. You are simply asked to direct to the consciousness aspect the attention legitimately due to it. This is all. When you are engaged in thought, you are not engaged in action, perception or feeling. When engaged in action, you are not engaged in thought, feeling or perception. So also, when you are engaged in knowing, you cannot be engaged in any other kind of activity. The presence and recognition of subjective Consciousness, your real centre, is the one thing needed to make your life possible and connected. Make it so, by knowing that knowing principle to be your real ANAGARIKA DHARMAPALA

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or nearly fifteen centuries many millions of human beings have been tortured, oppressed, burnt hanged, quartered for holding certain religious views that were not in conformity with the unscientific dogmas of the established religion. Millions of human beings have suffered death in vain on account of the devilishness of religious agitators. Religion is a thing of the heart, and it is beyond the power of man to go into the heart of other people. To oppress a human being for his inner convictions is diabolical. Bruno was burnt at the stake by the muddle headed ignorant ecclesiastics of Rome, and today we know that Bruno was right and the Vatican wrong. Man is a thinking being, and he is changing every second in body and mind. He is not the same in thought for two consecutive minutes. The child of today who is ignorant of higher mathematics after he enters the higher form in the college may know to solve deep problems. To persecute a human being for religion is most inhuman. But the dogmatists, who adopted methods of persecution, had no knowledge of psychology, and of the psychical changes taking places in the hu-

centre. You never go outside it, and you can never leave it, even if you will. This does not deny or negate your worldly life, as is ordinarily supposed, but makes it richer, firmer, truer and more successful. To have deep peace and not to be disturbed from it, even for a moment, is the ardent desire of everyone. For this, you have necessarily to be at a centre which does not change. That is the real 'I'-principle or Consciousness. To

ciple; and then 'it', the object, and 'you', the subject, both merge into experience itself. Thus, when you find that what you see is only yourself, the 'seeing' and 'objects' become mere empty words. In making the gross world mental, the Advaitin is an idealist. But he does not stop there. He goes further, examining the 'idea' also and proves it to be nothing but Consciousness. Thus he goes beyond even the idealist's stand.

Advaitin goes even further. Though he takes up the stand of the idealist when examining the world, he goes beyond the idealist's position and proves that the world and the mind, as such, are nothing but appearances and the Reality is Consciousness. Perception proves only the existence of knowledge and not the existence of the object. Thus the gross object is proved to be nonexistent. Therefore, it is meaning-

Living in Consciousness does not negate worldly life

Atmananda (Krishna Menon)

The presence and recognition of subjective Consciousness, your real centre, is the one thing needed to make your life possible and connected. Make it so, by knowing that knowing principle to be your real centre

be it and to establish oneself there is the end and aim of life. This alone makes real life possible. The word 'I' has the advantage of taking you direct to the core of your self. But you must be doubly sure that you will no longer return to identification with the body. By reducing objects into Consciousness or happiness, you come only to the brink of experience. Reduce them further into the 'I'-prin-

The realist holds that matter is real and mind is unreal, but the idealist says that mind is real and matter is unreal. Of the two, the idealist's position is better; for when the mind is taken away from the world, the world is not. Therefore, it can easily be seen that the world is a thought form. It is difficult to prove the truth of the realist's stand; for dead matter cannot decide anything. The

less to explain subtle perceptions as a reflection of gross perceptions. Thus all perceptions are reduced to the ultimate 'I'-principle, through knowledge. When a Jnyanin takes to activities of life, he 'comes out' with body, sense organs or mind whenever he needs them; and he acts, to all appearances, like an ordinary man, but knowing full well, all the while, that he is the Reality itself.

man mind. Psychology was never a part of animistic religion. Dogma and psychology never go together. A religion without psychology is unfit for the thinker. The only religion with a complete psychology from beginning to end is the Arya Dharma enunciated by the Lord of Mercy, Sakya Muni, the Tathagata Buddha. In renunciation the Blessed One found freedom from pride, selfish-

and ignorance. What was wanted was effort and uprightness, and freedom from hypocrisy. The desire to gain the higher wisdom was developed, and the low desires for selfish gain were by effort annihilated. This Wonderful Doctrine perished from the land of its birth with the degeneration of the people who neglected the teachings of wisdom and love. The generation that lived when

ings, perceptions and volitions thereof into categories of Good and Evil. To the Good belonged the meritorious thought, and to the evil the demeritorious thoughts. Man was taught that in his hands lay his own salvation, and that he is a responsible rational being, and that by controlling his senses, evil thoughts shall not arise, and that it is within his power to live a life of perfect

Man never in same thought for 2 consecutive minutes

Anagarika Dharmapala

ness and anger, and love came to live on earth, and the earth was happy, for the bloody religions had not yet been born. Fair Aryavarta was then purely Aryan, and the religion of love taught freedom to man by psychological methods. Men and women learnt the science, and they did not want priests, gods, and animal sacrifice to realize emancipation from passion, anger,

Two thousand years of prosperity made the later generations of the people to become indolent and luxurious. Laziness and luxury were responsible for the decline of the people of India the final disappearance came were given to luxury and sensual indulgence. Two thousand years of prosperity made the later generations of the people to become indolent and luxurious. Laziness and luxury were responsible for the decline of the people of India. Aryan psychology as enunciated by the Blessed One analyzed the human mind and classified the feel-

holiness here. By the diffusion of the Doctrine of Love, brotherliness was established, animals received kindness at the hands of man, animal sacrifices ceased; and wisdom reigned. Psychological contentment is spiritual wealth. The 148th birth anniversary of Anagarika Dharmapala will be observed on September 17

Two from one! This is the root of suffering. -Ashtavakra Gita We are actors in a play who have forgotten they are in a play. -Swami Premodaya By accepting what is you become bigger than what is. -Eckhart Tolle As things are interpreted or labeled by the mind they slowly cease to be what they are and start to become what is thought about them. -John Greven Seeking is simply a game that is played until the recognition that there is nothing to find. -Unmani Liza Hyde Many of our ideas and beliefs about ourselves and the world are so deeply ingrained that we are unaware that they are beliefs and take them, without question, for the absolute truth. - Rupert Spira When we attempt to limit the unlimited, suffering occurs. -Michael Jeffreys

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September 14, 2012

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Resilience amidst conflict: Women of Kashmir ZAINAB AKHTER

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n armed conflict, the experiences of women are varied. From victims to survivors, and from peace-builders to perpetrators of conflict, the categories of classification are indeed numerous. In the context of the conflict in Kashmir, however, what are the new opportunities that have been created for them? And what are their roles in it? As victims of the conflict Women have continuously been the victims of physical, psychological, and cultural violence as well as economic inequalities. On a daily basis, they face a range of atrocities, from eve-teasing to rape, and physical violence to murder. While women in Kashmir are victims of violence from all sides - the security forces and the militants - they have shown great resilience. They have emerged as survivors by not only continuing with their lives but also providing support to their families in both economic and emotional terms. For example, the case of Kashmir's 'half-widows', who do not know the whereabouts of their husbands. While not presumed to be dead, these men have left behind children and their wives. Without proof of their husband's death, their wives are unable to remarry, receive government funding and are often cast out of society as a great stigma is attached to women in such positions. Most of them are disowned by their in-laws, and live mostly indoors. Aspirations among them are high, however, despite the restrictive lifestyles they lead. For example, many women study to be journalists but at the end of the day most of them end up taking up teaching. There are hardly any women journalists in the Valley. Conflict and women's empowerment Kashmiri women have adapted themselves to the conflict and are attempting to make a positive contribution. Parveena Ahanger founded the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP). The association seeks justice and acquires information on the whereabouts of disappeared people. It is an important initiative on the part of women towards bringing peace in Kashmir. The AFKP (Association of Families of Kashmiri Prisoners) led by Zamruda Habib provides psychosocial support to the families of Kashmiri prisoners held in various

jails, as well as tracking and documenting their cases. Athwaas ('handshake' in Kashmiri) is an initiative by WISCOMP (Women in Security Conflict Management and Peace) to bring women from all parts of Jammu and Kashmir together to explore possibilities for a just peace. This is done through a range of activities, including trauma counseling, conflict transformation workshops, articulation of the concerns of women to policy-mak-

them escape capture during the sudden military raids and crackdowns. The All Party Hurriyat Conference which is the umbrella organization spearheading the movement for independence has women's organizations, namely the Muslim Khawateen Markaz (MKM) and the Dukhtatran-eMillat (DeM), as constituent members. Both MKM and DeM have a political mandate professing separation from India while in addition also carrying out social and hu-

ers and government interlocutors, and initiation of programs that facilitate economic empowerment and political awareness. South Asia Forum for Human Rights (SAFHR) initiated a program called Daughters of Ladakh, Kashmir and Jammu (DLKJ) which is involved in mobilizing women in the state, where the conflict has deeply divided the people. Its strategy is to build a network of local coalitions or networks that

man rights activism. DeM is the only women separatist group in South Asia and it wants to establish an Islamic state in Kashmir. Another strain of activity engaging women which keeps coming to prominence intermittently yet consistently is the role of women during protests. They were seen wearing shrouds and chanting pro-freedom slogans in marches against Indian rule in the early years of the conflict. Many were killed or injured in shoot-outs by Indian armed forces while demonstrating. In the mass protests of 2008 and 2010, an increasing number of women participated alongside men; at times even leading all-women protest marches. The former were triggered by the illegal transfer of Kashmiri land by the local government, and the latter by arbitrary teenage killings by Indian paramilitaries. To conclude, the largely patriarchal and conservative Kashmiri society is still not comfortable with the active political participation of women in the public sphere. However, a reversal in attitude is necessary. Empowering women would shape the path for peace and reconciliation that would organically grow out of participatory dialogue and lead to peace and development in the state. The writer is Research Intern, IPCS

In the mass protests of 2008 and 2010, an increasing number of women participated alongside men; at times even leading all-women protest marches move between social justice and welfare interests to human rights and peace-building. Women's participation in the conflict Women have also become facilitators of combat by acting as couriers for arms and informers for militants; providing them with shelter and food and at times helping

India Post Diversionary move

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rime Minister Manmohan Singh, who is considered a great economist, would not like to be compared with one of his predecessors - V.P.Singh of the Mandal report fame. The comparison has been forced by his latest move to give reservation in promotions for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes through a Constitutional amendment bill. Faced by a growing BJP agitation in 1989 for Mandir at the Ayodhya mosque site, which threatened his government, VP Singh announced acceptance of the Mandal Commission report to unite the Dalits and lower classes behind him and his government. Although his government fell soon after, the Mandal report became one of the tools of the secularists to beat the BJP with. Ever since the game has been equal, the secularists winning by points. It has been the tactics of governments fighting exposures of their scams to use diversionary tactics to turn the focus away from their own sins. The practice initiated by VP Singh is now being adopted by the Manmohan Singh government to make life less miserable for it till the final verdict on it can be pronounced in 2014. The move for reservation in promotions for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes is fraught with dangerous consequences. Although most parties have reservations about this move, no one is going to be seen opposing the idea of advancement of SCs and STs. Only the Samajwadi Party of Mulayam Singh Yadav has openly opposed the draft bill. It argues if quotas are given to SC/STs in promotion, the same have to be given to other backward classes (OBCs) as well. It also says that Muslims won't benefit from these reservations. OBCs constitute 52 percent of the population and if quotas are given to SC/STs, OBCs will be the worst impacted, it claims. If this becomes the law, reservations in promotions for OBCs will follow soon after as was the case earlier with Mandal recommendations. This would leave hardly any scope for promotions based on merit. A government already besieged with non-performing bureaucrats will further compromise its functioning. The proposed change in the Constitution has been necessitated to undo a Supreme Court ruling that struck down the promotion quota move by requiring states to prove with quantifiable data that SCs and STs were backward and inadequately represented in services in order to avail the quota. It is not certain that the current plan also, if passed by Parliament, will not be struck down by courts. But that is for future consideration. What matters to the UPA government as of now is to get the logjam over Coalgate removed and the BJP brought round to backing this bill so that focus is taken off its performance. The upcoming Constitutional amendment provision to strike down all the legal challenges in implementing and institutionalizing the quotas-in-promotion enterprise is that it violates the spirit - and letter - of what everybody from BR Ambedkar and Jawaharlal Nehru downward wanted to see: the erosion of divisions along caste lines, and the winding down, over time, of all reservations. Interestingly, because of this reservation policy, more and more caste groups are demanding that they be included in the OBC category. And vote bank considerations compel the government to yield to such unreasonable demands. In the present situation, even those caste groups which are economically and socially well off enjoy the benefits of reservation. On the other hand, there are poor people with a hand-to-mouth existence even among the so-called forward castes. There has been a reasonable demand that if there are to be reservations, government should see that the economic and social status of persons/groups is taken into consideration before extending such benefits.


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