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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

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Friday, May 21 2010 | Vol. 29, No. 21

Indo American News

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It’s a Musical Reunion!

Looks like the entire Bollywood Music Industry is touring Houston this Summer. IAA presents LAMHE - A Bollywood Musical Delight with Kavita Krishnamurthy and many others at Jones Hall on June 6th and Bollywoodshows4u presents AR Rahman Live in Concert on July 3rd. Many more coming to Houston are ShankarEhsan-Loy, Sukhwinder Singh and Pandit Jasraj

READ US ONLINE at www.indoamerican-news.com Published weekly from Houston, TX

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IREO Brings India to New Heights

IREO ( has announced plans to construct the tallest buildings in North India in its newly launcheddevelopment IREO Victory Valley in Sector 67 Gurgaon. Three highrise residential towers will measure180 meters tall and boast 51 floors when completed. Currently, the tallest tower in the region is the CivicCentre in Delhi, which stands at 112 meters. COMPLETE STORY ON PG. 7

Jugal Malani to Lead New Team at India House By Pramod Kulkarni

HOUSTON: Within a month of the resignation of its top leaders, India House board has installed a fresh leadership team led by President Jugal Malani. At a special meeting on Saturday, the board elected by unanimous consent Malani and Kul Bhushan Uppal as vice president of operations and Brij Agrawal as vice president of finanace. Devesh Pathak continues as the treasurer and Col. Raj Bhalla as the secretary. Former Vice President of Finance Durga Aggarwal attended the board meeting, but former President Ashok Dhingra and Vice President of Operations Dr. Virendra Mathur, were absent. Malani and Agrawal are leading members of the Indo-American business community and active in various charitable causes. Kul Bhushan Uppal is a retired executive and has been active with community organizaitons, including India Culture Center and India House. The board meeting on Saturday took place in a congenial atmo-

The news team at India House: Jugal Malani (center) is the new President, Kulbhushan Uppal (left) is Vice President of Operations, and Brij Agrawal is Vice President of Finance. sphere and achieved a smooth transition, according to India House community service administrator Yolanda Benoit. “The new executive team will be moving forward,” Benoit said. “It will be good that now what’s talked about will center around all the community services is providing.” India House continues to be a hub of community activity with

yoga classes held on Thursday and Saturday from 11 to noon. English as a second language (ESL) classes are being conducted on Fridays from 2 to 4 pm. Summer enrichment classes will be held from June 7 to August 21 with lunch and snacks provided to the young students, Benoit said. India House has also introduced a new special rental pricing policy.

Indo Americans Win Local Races

Tom Abraham

Gujarati Samaj celebrates 50 years of Formation of Gujarat State. The Association celebrated this milestone with pomp and splendor organizing dance programs, rangoli events and topping off the event with delicious Gujarati food. Seen from left are Prakeshbhai Desai,Raju Patel, Sapna Shah, Nisha Mirani, Yogina Patel, Ajit Patel and Himanshu Patel

HOUSTON: Tom Abraham was re-elected unopposed for his fourth term as Sugar Land councilman and Ken Mathew was also re-elected for this third term as City of Stafford councilman

Youth Leader Development Program Students Engage with Mayor Annise Parker and Author Chitra Divakaruni Story on Pg 8

The India House cricket field is also being well utilized throughout the weekends. The taped ball cricket enthusiasts are planning to host their second annual summer coaching camp for children. India House is located on a 10-acre property in southwest Houston at 8888, West Bellfort, Houston, TX 77031. For additional information, call 713-929-1900 or visit www.indiahousehouston.org

Gujarat at 50!

Ken Mathew

THIS WEEK...

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COMPLETE STORY ON PG. 23

IAN EXCLUSIVE

In Conversation with Rakesh Story on Pg 15 Roshan

BUSINESS

SOCIETY

Sharma & Associates: A Successful Run Law Firm Story on Pg 25

The IRS Opens a Houston Office. The IRS? No, Not That One! Story on Pg 14

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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

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Indo American News • Friday, MaY 21 , 2010 • Online Edition: www.indoamerican-news.com


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Sukhwinder Singh Concert Postponed to June 4th HOUSTON: May 19, 2010: Due to visa issues, many of the cities scheduled on the “Jai Ho World Tour” have had to move around their concert dates. The original singer of the Oscar winning single Jai Ho, Sukhwinder Singh, was originally scheduled to perform at the Arena Theater on Saturday, May 22, 2010. President and CEO of Hum Tum Shows, Rehan Siddiqi, is proud to announce that the show has been rescheduled for Friday, June 4, 2010. The concert will still be taking place at Arena Theater, and all ticket purchases made for the May 22nd show will be honored for the June 4th show. Hum Tum Shows worked with the international promoter to be the 2nd to last city in the world tour, giving Rehan and his team two extra weeks to promote the show. This new date, June 4th, also gives Hum Tum Shows the opportunity to do something special for all of the High School graduates that will be graduating over the next couple of weeks. To honor all graduating seniors, Hum Tum Shows would like to offer them a free ticket to the Jai Ho concert. If they show up at the Hum Tum City studio at 6161 Savoy, Ste. 1140, Houston, TX 77035 with proof of graduation, they will receive their free ticket to the show. And, to go one step further, any graduating senior who shows up to the show on June 4th wearing their cap and

Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

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Certificate of Recognition

Great News for Graduating Students. HumTumCIty will offer free tickets to graduating seniors if they provide proof of graduation at their studio and anybody who wears their gown on the day of the concert will get to be on stage with Sukhwinder Singh

gown will get to be on stage with Sukhwinder Singh while he sings his Oscar winning song, Jai Ho!! This will be a night to remember!! Buy your tickets today at the following ticket locations: Maharani Music, Patel Brothers, Savoy Vid-

eo, Parivar Grocers, Sulekha.com and DesiClub.com. For more information on the show, please call Rehan Siddiqi at 713-545-4115. We will see you June 4th for the concert event of 2010!

At a dinner and award presentation event hosted held at the Kingsway Buffet on Tuesday, May 18, a certificate of recognition was presented to Krishna Giri and the IndoAmerican News in appreciation of “the professionalism, dedication and service shown during the Houston Counts Census 2010 effort.”

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IACCGH: The Future of Higher Education Over Lunch By Rati Ramadas HOUSTON: "Our ambitions shall be unbounded and so, too, our contributions"That was how Dr. David Leebron, was introduced. Those words should have given us a clue about what to expect. Dr. Leebron's speech was brief but was filled with lofty ideas. A person with no idea about Dr. Leebron would have easily dismissed the speech, but the truth lies in how much he has accomplished in his short stint as President of Rice University. Perhaps the reason why he was invited to speak on 'Internationalization of Higher Education'. As part of its Distinguished Lecture Series, The Indo-American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston (IACCGH) with Shell held a luncheon with Dr. David Leebron, Mr Sanjiv Arora, Consul General of India and members of the Chamber Board to speak about new avenues and opportunities in education between India and USA. India has been talking about passing a legislation that will allow foreign universities to set up campuses in India. Though many universities already have links with

Dr. David Leebron with IACCGH Presidnt Madhukar Prasad. Photo: Bijay Dixit

prominent Indian universities, this legislation could easily make way for the world's top universities to set up their own independent campuses in India. For Indian students, this means an opportunity to earn a degree from a foreign university without ever having to leave the country and at practically one-fifth the price.  Though Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's cabinet has approved it the matter will soon be discussed in Parliament. But even while the atmosphere in India may not be ready, yet,

to welcome foreign universities, for many like Dr. Leebron, this is a strong, encouraging trend in furthering relations between the two countries. According to Consul General Sanjiv Arora this is "yet another example of ongoing liberalization." All across the United States are universities brimming with Indian students. In fact, Texas has been ranked 4th in a nationwide poll of States with the most number of Indian students. Houston ranks 8th among cities in America with the

highest Indo-American population. With these statistics Dr. Leebron tried to explain how truly global Rice University and other State universities were. He also spoke about his university's commitment to creating a unique global atmosphere for foreign students. He said, ''Universities have a border-less perspective. We take strengths from Rice, commitment from Houston and give it to the world.'' He also added that ''international exposure can create a greater compassion in students.'' While the heart may be willing, the mind foresees a problem. India requires that interested foreign universities must deposit a start up fund of $11 million. A problem that needs to be negotiated. Dr. Leebron sees education as a service. A service which ''we export and import.'' But he is heartened by the fact that the environment is changing. A favorable environment is being created where these discussions can take place successfully. Over the past few years, the number of American students choosing Indian universities to study has also been growing

Indo American News • Friday, MaY 21 , 2010 • Online Edition: www.indoamerican-news.com

steadily, though not substantially. India currently ranks 17 in a list of countries that American students choose as their destination for higher education. But Dr. Leebron says, that India has four main factors working for it, as opposed to China. It is a developing country and has a strong understanding of the major world cultures. It has many exemplary institutes for higher education. In fact the IIMs and IITs are recognized among the top 5 institutions of higher education in the world. The main factor, is of course, that the language of instruction is English. A major reason for Americans and British students to choose India. With all these facts and figures to think about, Dr. Leebron concluded by saying, ''There is no better way to build relations between these countries than to build personal and educational bridges.'' On a positive note, Dr Leebron also said he would be open to negotiating with organizations about possible scholarships for Indian students dreaming of an education in Rice University.


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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

SOCIETY

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Hindu Families Celebrate Jagadguru Sri Adi Shankaracharya Jayanthi HOUSTON: Hindu families in Houston came together on 18th May 2010 at Sri Udayakumar Gullapalli’s ‘Shiridi Sai Pooja’ mandir to celebrate the Jayanthi of Bhagawatpaada Jagadguru Sri Adi Shankaracharya, the icon of Sanatana Dharma. The 7th annual program started off with Vedic Pooja and Chanting by Vedic Scholars followed by Rudrabhishekam to Sri Adi Shankara. As most of the Vaidikas know Adi Shankara strived to re-establish Vedic Dharma when there was a threat to Hinduism in our own motherland. The program continued into the rendering of the compositions on and by the Acharya which included Thotakashtakam, Bhajagovindam and Annapurnashtakam, to name a few, presented by the local talent of Houston, including

music teacher Rajarajeswari Kalaga, Iswari Murthy and members of AIM for Seva. The presense of all time supporters, close relative of Vedic scholar’s family, Samhita and Geetanjali Gubba added colors to the celebrations. Dr.Siddeswar and Aruna Gubba, the event organizers, whose initiation began this culture of Jagadguru Jayanthi in Houston 6 years ago grew with leaps and bounds with more people participating every year thanked everyone for attending the program. The Rudrabhishekam to Sri Adi Shankara by Vedic scholars including priests Sri Udayakumar Gullapalli and Sri Atchutaramaiah Mahankali made this year’s celebration memorable. As this program is by invitation only, interested individuals can email the organisers at DharmaProgram@yahoo.com

A Rare Chance to Catch a Melodious Voice that Brings Vibrance to Kirtan

Bhai Mohinderjit Singh (center) performing at the Sikh Center

HOUSTON: The local community gets a rare treat for three weeks as Bhai Mohinderjit Singh performs kirtan at the Sikh Center of the Gulf Coast. Originally from Delhi where he was the ragi jatha at the Seeshgunj Gurdwara, he is much admired for his melodious voice and grasp of the scriptures that he translates into bhajans. The Bhai, an accomplished singer, has been on worldwide tour of Sikh communities and is performing at many Gurdwaras.

Indo American News • Friday, MaY 21 , 2010 • Online Edition: www.indoamerican-news.com

He has been performing since at the Sikh Center since May 3. His last performance will be on May 30. The kirtan is held Mondays through Saturdays from 7pm to 8:30pm, except on Wednesdays till 9pm followed by langar. On Sundays, the program is from 8:30am through 1:15pm followed by langar. For information, call the Sikh Center at at 8819 Prairie Drive at 713-466-6538, or Sampuran Singh at 281-635-7466 or Bhai Amar Singh at 832-633-5092


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IREO Brings India to New Heights

IREO, one of India’s leading real estate developers, launches new development Victory Valley, which will be home to the tallest residential towers in North India continued from page

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To accommodate such great heights, the company plans to use Aluminum Form Work technology for thefirst time. Aluminum modules will allow for construction of tall towers, and will be filled with concrete mixture for clean flatslab and walls. Low and mid-rise buildings will also be apart of the project. IREO Victory Valley is set on a serene expanse of 25 acres, complete with 7.4 acres of green valley with water bodies in the center of the building complexes. Two to five bedroom units are available, ranging from 1435-6900 square feet. As in past projects from

IREO, duplex apartments with 21 foot ceilings in the living room are also offered. Features include the company’s trademark of quality and value: 3-side open apartments, 10-foot ceiling heights, floor-toceiling windows, VRFT air conditioning for climate controlled heating and cooling, and large, usable balconies. The team is dedicated to quality of life for its customers, and they have plans for two multi-level clubhouses with pools, sporting fields, jogging track, and

common roof deck areas. IREO is committed to offering the safety and comfort of residents, and Victory Valley will include 24/7 security within the gated community and 100% power backup. Fostering an environmentally friendly community is a top priority, and IREO has made provisions in the best water purification systems, waste management systems, and rain harvesting pits available. While safety concerns have been voiced, IREO officials assure that

the towers in Victory Valley will have smoke-free escape stairs that will allow occupants escape for up to 4 hours. Additionally, the towers are Seismic Zone complaint and special care has been taken to ensure maximum safety in case of earthquakes. In Gurgaon, IREO Victory Valley is the third project launched by IREO. In September 2009, IREO first launched The Grand Arch (www.thegrandarch.com) in Sector 58, now sold out, and renowned for its distinctive fusion

of modern and Mughal architecture. The project is the first phase of IREO City, an exclusive 500 acre integrated township that will offer a unique mix of features that will include schools, hospitals, a luxury hotel, shopping malls, and office complexes. It will also have a host of social infrastructure facilities like art centers, theaters, and water features. After the success of The Grand Arch, IREO launched a second project in Gurgaon, IREO Uptown (www.ireoworld.com/uptown) in Sector 66. Uptown offers the same high quality that is standard with IREO products, but is attractively priced to suit Gurgaon’s rapidly expanding middle class. In March 2010, booking began at IREO’s first integrated township in Ludhiana, Punjab, called IREO

Waterfront (www.ireowaterfront. com), which is located only 20 minutes from the heart of Ludhiana City Center. Sprawled across 500 acres, the project will be comprised of residential plots, villas, apartments, www.ireoworld.com homes@ireo.in 877-770-IREO commercial and retail space, university, and a state of the art clubhouse designed by WOW! Architects of Singapore and will feature a 13-acre man-made lake. In addition to developments available in Gurgaon and Ludhiana, IREO’s portfolio of 14 announced projects is geographically diverse and encompasses the development of residential, office, retail and hospitality properties in India across prime locations within the Delhi NCR, Punjab, Chennai, Pune, the Goa region, and Coimbatore. Their projects have been designed by top international architectural firms such as Sasaki, Urban Design Associates, and Sorg & Associates, and use only the highest quality finishes providing comfort and durability and enhancing energy efficient living. For more information about IREO and its projects, please contact the US-based IREO team at 877-770-4736.

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YLDP Students Engage with Mayor Annise Parker and Author Chitra Divakaruni

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HOUSTON: The concluding session of Youth Leader Development Program (YLDP) class of 2009-2010 was held on Saturday, May 8th at the Looscan Neighborhood Library Library with 24 students, their parents and community leaders. The keynote speaker and distinguished guest, Mayor Annise Parker of Houston, gave a fitting finale to the program with her class lesson on government and politics. Mayor Parker’s presentation on principles of govern-

complished writer and a local of Houston. Divakaruni shared her experience of how she took to writing and how rewarding it is to be an author. “You make money and you get to work from home,” she said to those aspiring to make writing as their career. The writer stressed on the importance of observing and listening keenly to people. The most beautiful ideas come from people’s stories and she also told the students how her grandfather’s story telling inspired her to write. She read a few pas-

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Houston Mayor Annise Parker with YLDP students

ment, its functions and structure were the highlight of the program. Mayor Parker drew an analogy with “Family Unit” being similar to government unit where decision making is concerned, also how drawing input from a young and older family member may vary and how protocol has to be set to move forward on key efforts with a balanced judicious view. Students seemed to connect with her as a teacher rather than a person of authority. She touched on aspects of decision-making, leadership, politics and other related topics while engaging the students and making them come up with ideas. During the Q&A session, Mayor Parker patiently answered the questions, some of which dealt with her reasons for entering politics while other more specific like her decision on text book policy and much more. The second key speaker at this finale session was Chitra Divakaruni, an internationally ac-

sages from her recent book “One Amazing Thing” and gave a brief description on how and when she got the idea to write this book. Later, Divakaruni signed her books for the students -the books being a gift from the YLDP program to its 2009-10 class. The YLDP Executive Committee (EC) and the organizing members showed professionalism and dedication to program, which got the overall commendation of the parents and community leaders present on the occasion. YLDP is led by Program Director, Sushma Bhan, and Directors – Atul Vir (Selection), Sangeeta Pasrija (Communications), Mini Timmaraju (Service Program), Minal Varadharajan (Publishing), Bangar Reddy (Community Outreach), Nat Murthy (Non-profit org Liaison), Kalpu Patel (Finance). YLDP is under the ICC umbrella and is a community program that is nurtured with support and encouragement from all key com-

Indo American News • Friday, MaY 21 , 2010 • Online Edition: www.indoamerican-news.com

munity organizations/leaders, and more importantly parents of the enrolled children. Attending this special event, and to recognize Ms. Parker on behalf of IAPAC was its BOD Mini Timmaraju, representing IAPAC president, Ramesh Anand. Madhukar Prasad, president, IACCGH honored Divakaruni with a plaque. Prasad later commented, “It is (YLDP) truly a very successful way to mould young lives and what can be more gratifying than that.” Congratulating the batch of 2009-2010, Swapan Dhairyawan, president, ICC, said that it was a delight to see the youth so very proactive. IACF President, Bobby Singh commended the YLDP EC for its well planned and flawlessly execution of the program. Other leaders in attendance were ICC BODs – Nimmi Vale, Veena Ponnanganti, Shobana Muratee, ICC Trustee, Keshu Patel, ICC peat-president and UNICEF BOD, Leela Krishnamurthi. YLDP program is getting increasingly popular within a year of its initiation. The program focuses on developing leadership in Indo-American youth of Greater Houston High School (seniors and juniors) through presentations from successful leaders, who serve as role models and inspire through their personal stories, sharing insights and addressing their questions. The four themes of YLDP are 1) Government/ Politics 2) Charity/Philanthropy 3) Business/Entrepreneurship 4) Social/Culture/Art, and it offers a well-rounded leadership program aimed at grooming youngsters to be the future leaders. YLDP is a yearlong program, with eight presentation/speaker events including field trips, 2-weeks of service program and concludes with a graduation ceremony on Aug 15th. YLDP is now accepting applications for the 2010-11. Please contact Atul Vir (832-567-4310) and Nimmi Vale (832-563-9696) for detailed questions on the selection process, or Sushma Bhan (281492-7575) for any YLDP info. The application was be downloaded from www.YLPDhouston.org or www.icchouston.org, and the deadline is July 10, 2010.


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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

Tender Voices Sing the Immortal Bhagavad Gita

By Padmashree Rao HOUSTON: Catch them young and they can quote chapters and verses, that too in a language only a few in the world speak today. If Sanskrit was known as the language of the gods, god’s children are fluent in reciting the Sanskrit verses, thanks to their innate skill in learning fast and quick. At Chinmaya Mission Houston, a three or four-year-old, sitting on the lap of an Acarya Gaurang Nanavaty listens to 4 year old Uma Kamath as she captivates the Photo: Jayesh Mistry elder, can neatly re- audience. cite verses from the invocation invoking seeking the explain some verses while the Hindu Holy Book of Bhagavad grace of Lord Krishna, whose im- older group had to summarize the Gita. mortal Gita was tirelessly taught chapter. The audience watched in awe as The children pronounce some of by Swami Chinmayananda to the child after child came before them the tongue-twisters with such clar- modern world. and chanted the verses in chaste ity and ease, which a majority of The Acaryas of Chinmaya Misadults cannot do. sion Houston, Gaurangbhai Nana- Sanskrit, a language that is chalThe awe inspiring enthusiasm vaty and Darshanaben Nanavaty lenging even to Indians who grew and the can do attitude of chil- were present to encourage the up in India. The assembled elders envied the fact that children here dren in different age groups who children. laboriously practiced the chanting In his opening address, Acarya had better opportunities to learn of the tough scriptural text was to Gaurangbhai told the children that the exquisite Bhagavad Gita. The event lasted until almost pay a fitting homage on May 8, the everyone who learned the Gita birthday of Pujya Gurudev Swami was a winner. Real competition is 2 p.m. when the organizers anChinmayananda, founder of Chin- when one tries to better one’s own nounced the competition winners applauding each participant and maya Mission. self first, he said. The tender voices sang the The acarya said he and Darshana the record turnout this year. This year’s winners are: Lord’s ageless song to celebrate aunty shared a dream to make the Group 4 (Grades 9 – 12) - Gauthe life of this great teacher. Balavihar children learn all the 18 Every year, the voices that sing chapters of the Gita before they rav Nayak, Monica Sirigiri, Krishna Narra the Gita are getting younger. graduate. Group 3 (Grades 6 – 8) - SumedOver 85 Balavihar children from This year, the Balavihar chilkindergarten through 12th grade, dren put their hearts into learning ha Rao, Harsha Kethireddipalli, participated in the annual Gita the 28 verses of Chapter VIII, one Ragini Konde Group 2 (Grades 3 – 5) - AvanChanting competition. of the profound chapters where It was a great team effort that Lord Krishna tells Arjuna how to tika Joshi, Varun Nayak, Bhavya made the day flawless. The orga- keep Him as the center of life and Kethireddipalli Group 1 (Grades KG – 2) nizers and volunteering parents death. Yashwanth Arra, Mihir Krishna worked like the blended notes of The Balavihar children were the Lord’s Gita and everyone was divided into four categories. The Gundamaraju, Pranav Konduri Chinmaya Mission is located at happy to have made the day a true youngest group with kids from gift to Pujya Gurudev’s vision. kindergarten to second grade Chinmaya Prabha, 10353, Synott The competition also helps im- learned 10 verses and had to re- Road, Sugar Land, TX- 77498. bibe a spiritual outlook early in call the meanings of important For more information visit www. life and helps shape the spirit of Sanskrit words from a word list, chinmayahouston.org or www. saumyakasi.org call Bharati Supublic speaking and leadership taught to them. among participants. The intermediate groups had to taria at 281-933-0233 or Jay The special day began with an learn the whole chapter and also Deshmukh at 832-541-0059

Indo American News • Friday, MaY 21 , 2010 • Online Edition: www.indoamerican-news.com

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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

We all know that a good diet is a vital part of staying healthy, but what exactly does that mean? And, how do the many different cultures that make up this huge city of Houston adapt the nutritional guidelines to their lifestyle? The American Cancer Society (ACS) publishes Nutrition and Physical Activity Guidelines to serve as a foundation to affect dietary and physical activity patterns among Americans. The ACS Guidelines are consistent with guidelines from the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association for the prevention of coronary heart disease and diabetes, as well as for the individual ability to maintain general good health. Approximately two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese, and this percentage continues to grow on a yearly basis. So, what are the guidelines the American Cancer Society suggests you incorporate into your life? They are as follows: 1.Choose most of the foods you eat from plant sources. You should try and eat five or more servings of fruits and vegetables each day. You should also eat other foods from plant sources, such as whole grains, rice, pasta or beans several times each day. 2.Limit your intake of high-fat foods, particularly from an-

health

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Cancer Prevention and Your Diet

imal sources. Choose foods low in fat and limit consumption of meats, especially high-fat meats. Dairy products, such as butter and whole

4.Limit the consumption of alcoholic beverages, if you drink at all. Alcoholic beverages, along with cigarette smoking and the use of

a large amount of sugar and fats. How do we stick to these guidelines without taking all of the “fun” out of our meals, or without mak-

milk, contain high amounts of saturated animal fats, which should be avoided or used in minimum quantities. Fried foods are also a source of very high fat content. 3.Be physically active: achieve and maintain a healthy weight. Be at least moderately active for 30 minutes or more at least 5 to 6 days each week.

chewing tobacco (Paan), cause cancers of the oral cavity, esophagus, and larynx. Your cancer risk increases with the amount of alcohol you drink. More than 250 million people in India use tobacco, which currently accounts for an estimated 800,000 to 900,000 annual deaths. 5.Skip the Sugar: It should be a red flag if the foods you eat contain

ing them too complicated? If you are confused, try relating the portion size of a serving to everyday items. It is an easy way to visualize what a true portion size looks like. A woman’s fist or a baseball – This should be the tool you use for fruit and vegetable portions A rounded handful – Equals about a half a cup. This is a good

Indo American News • Friday, MaY 21 , 2010 • Online Edition: www.indoamerican-news.com

measure for a snack serving, such as chips or pretzels A deck of cards – Your meat servings, including fish and poultry, should be this size. Or, they can be the size of the palm of your hand. Golf ball or large egg – Equals about a quarter cup of dried fruit or nuts Computer mouse – Is about the size of a small baked potato Compact Disk – Is about the size of one serving of pancakes or waffles When it comes to fats, oils, and sweets, the message is to USE THEM SPARINGLY. It is suggested that you eat a variety of foods to get the nutrients you need and at the same time the right amount of calories to maintain a healthy weight. With each and every culture, the dietary content is different. But, by following these simple guidelines, we can become a healthier community. Monitoring your weight regularly is a good measure of health and can signal the need for caloric restrictions. Find a weight that is healthy for your body type and work hard to maintain that weight. Unless you are engaged in hard labor on a regular basis, caloric intake should be limited to 1,500 to 1,800 calories per day to maintain a healthy weight level.Remember, almost half of the cancer can be prevented with a healthy diet. Dr. S. Legha editted this article for the Indo American News.


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The IRS Opens a Houston Office. The IRS? No, Not That One !

By Jawahar Malhotra HOUSTON: The Indian Register of Shipping, an internationally recognised independent ship classification society, founded in India in 1975, announced the opening of its latest office at 1 Houston Center,1221 McKinney, Suite 2626. The office will be manged by Subash Paranjpe, a seasoned maritime veteran. The announcement was made at an event hosted by the Consulate General of India at the Hilton on Post Oak this past Tuesday evening before an invited list of leaders from the community and mainstream. Indian Consul General Sanjeev Arora welcomed them all and introduced Captain J. C. Anand, the Chairman of IRS who explained that the IRS provides independent third party technical inspection and certification services for all types of marine craft and structures inckuding offshore and industrial projects. The two-hour ceremony was ttended by Harris County Commissioner’s Court Judge Ed Emmett, Peter Brown, Chairman of the Mayor’s Trade and Development Council and Noburu Ueda, chairman and President of Class MK, the Japanese Registry company, who flew in from Tokyo. From left: Jay Guerrero, chief of staff of Sen. John Cronyn’s local office; Jagdip Ahluwalia and Madhukar Prasad of The IRS has a number of offices worldwide. The Hous- the Indo American Chamber of Commerce; Indian Consul General Sanjeev Arora; Harris County Judge Ed Emmett;

Captain J. C. Anand, Chairman of IRS; Noburu Ueda, Chairman of Class MK of Tokyo; former Councilman Peter Brown; Subash Paranjpe, Manager of the IRS Houston office; and Mona Parikh, the President-elect of the IACCGH. Photos: Bijay Dixit

ton office will handle both North and South America. Emmett was particularly happy to see the office open as he believes it will help trade blossom between India and Houston. Captain J. C. Anand, the Chairman of IRS (middle) gives a present to Harris County Commissioner’s Court Judge Ed Emmett as Indian Consul General Sanjeev Arora (right) looks on.

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SOCIETY

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KITES: A Family Flying High

Starring: Hrithik Roshan ,Barbara Mori, Kangana Ranaut, Kabir Bedi Producer:Rakesh Roshan Director: Anurag Basu Music Director: Rajesh Roshan

By Rati Ramadas Unless you are staying in a parallel universe you would have heard of Kites, the movie. The latest release from the Roshan family, starring Hrithik Roshan and Barbara Mori. This big budget, romance shot in LA, Vegas and Mexico is all set to release (finally!) on May 21. So, this is what we already know about the movie. Kites is Hrithik’s first movie, in two years, after Jodhaa Akbar. The movie also stars newcomer Barbara Mori, a Mexican actress. Kites is directed by Anurag Basu, (Gangster, Life in a Metro), produced by Rakesh Roshan and music directed by Rajesh Roshan. There will be two simultaneous versions released. One for India, which is 130 minutes long and the American

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version which is 90 minutes long. So, one would think, this is the Roshan family’s big step into international cinema? Well, the Producer, seems to see it that way. He says, “If I succeed, it will be my first step into international cinema. I would know I have taken the right step, even if I achieve 1-2% of success internationally. Then I will go full throttle for the next one.’’ To help them along with this big venture is Brett Ratner, Director of hit movies like Rush Hour and X-Men: the Last Stand. Ratner has edited the American version and Roshan says, “We are very happy with what Ratner has done. He knows and understand the US sensibilities and he modified the movie according to that.’’ But even though the movie continued on page 16


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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

Miss USA with a Difference As if Americans didn’t have enough to cope with the controversial illegal immigrant law in Arizona, the new Miss USA is Rima Fakih, a 24-year-old Arab-American. Comfortable in a microscopic bikini, Ms. Fakih is a universe apart from women in the Islamic world who are protected behinda burqa. Her selection will, undoubtedly, rile up the Taliban zealots as well as the ultra-conservatives in America, who feels that the pageant had succumbed to affirmative action. In actuality, Ms. Fakih’s win confirms that there’s no hidden agenda behind the beauty contest. And that beauty has no religious or ethnic bounds. Pramod Kulkarni

Off the Rails ... Once Again Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee seemed to have all the answers almost as soon as details of the stampede that claimed two lives at New Delhi railway station trickled in. It could be sabotage, it could be rumours, she asserted even as she ordered a high-level inquiry into the matter. Underlying her defence of her stewardship of this crucial ministry was an attempt to pass the blame onto the people who ran helter-skelter on Sunday when a sudden change in platform for two trains was announced. She also told us, as if we did not know, that there is a summer rush on at the moment. From the normal number of 3.5 lakh passengers from Delhi, at least five lakh use the railways from the capital daily in the summer. In such circumstances, every effort should have been made to improve crowd management. In 2004, there was a stampede at New Delhi railway station after which measures were to have been put in place to avoid such mishaps in future. Nothing was done. Now we agree with Ms Banerjee that the administration alone cannot be held responsible for such freak accidents. However, as the minister in charge, she and her officials are responsible for safety arrangements and crowd regulation. For example, given the summer rush, many trains, especially the eastbound ones, could have departed from other stations in the capital, thereby relieving the pressure on New Delhi station. After the unfortunate incident, the victims could not access first-aid or even drinking water. The success of the railways cannot be measured in terms of revenue collection alone as was done previously. It has also to be measured in terms of quality and safety for those who use it. However, we have seen that barring a few exceptions, ministers tend to focus on adding new stops for trains, increasing the number of trains to their constituencies and adding in local dishes to the menu now and again. The crumbling infrastructure of the railways is routinely overlooked with disastrous consequences. Instead of seeking to apportion blame, it would be useful if the minister and her officials were to take remedial measures now that this tragedy has occurred. But once this incident has moved away from the headlines, the ministry will continue to be on the wrong track. HT

e d ito r i a l

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Aliens: They Won’t Be Back Stephen Hawking: Earth could be at risk of an invasion by aliens living in ‘massive ships’. Daily Mail, UK CPM’s new rectification document said that “alien values” are affecting leaders and cadres more than before. Economic Times, India By Manas Chakravarty Stephen Hawking is probably the brainiest guy on the planet, but is he right about aliens? His visions about aliens terrorising us puny earthlings from great big ships is obviously the result of seeing too many movies like Independence Day. The huge alien ships hovering over our cities must have been at the back of Hawking’s mind when he made that rash comment. Or possibly, he might be thinking of Mars Attacks. But while I’m sure that Hawking knows far more about physics than I do, I’m not so sure about his grasp of the movies. In fact, I think his notion of how aliens are going to take us over is rather outdated, a bit like Newtonian mechanics in the age of string theory. Consider, for instance, how you would go about world domination if you were an alien. That’s not as difficult as it seems. The CPI(M)’s new rectification document clearly states that its leaders are being affected by “alien values”. Which means all you have to do is think like Prakash Karat and you have a pretty good grasp of how

Almost everybody takes a dim view of aliens, except perhaps the khap panchayats, who don’t mind marrying them because they have a different gotra. aliens will operate. Does Karat go around the world in massive ships, threatening all and sundry? No way. He operates from the backroom, trying to spread his insidious ideas and get cosy with leaders of the big parties and using them. That’s the way the aliens will work. All they have to do is take over our minds and we’ll do their bidding. The process has been well-documented. Take, for instance, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, where aliens replace people when they fall asleep. Or watch The Invasion, which shouldn’t be too difficult because it has Nicole Kidman in it — it’s all about an alien fungus taking over people when they fall asleep. What about Village of the Damned, where the kids are taken

over? And if you are still not convinced, go take a look at The Thing, which proves that aliens can steal the identities of people they’ve killed. To cut a long story short, you don’t really need great big ships if you want to take over the world. It’s not just the CPI(M) through which they’ve been trying to take us over. They were, for a time, able to snare far bigger fish than Karat. Take, for example, George W. Bush. Why on Betelgeuse do you think he talked so funnily? Or take a look at the Chinese leaders, with their careful, deadpan faces and their matching smiles. Reminds me of the scene in school in Body Snatchers where child actor Reilly Murphy’s crayon drawing is the only one that is not identical to all the other children’s. Of course, it may so happen that aliens are not the ghouls we think they are, but cute guys like ET or Jar Jar Binks. But that’s unlikely, almost everybody takes a dim view of aliens, except perhaps the khap panchayats, who don’t mind marrying them because they have a different gotra. It’s far more likely the aliens have already come here, looked at our wars, our nuclear arsenals, our pollution, our economic crises, our reckless plunder of the world’s resources, our TV serials, Mayawati and scooted off pretty fast, realising that this planet is doomed anyway. Manas Chakravarty is Consulting Editor, Mint

Be a Prisoner of Hope

By PP Wangchuk South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu has all the goodness about him. This has resulted in his latest book, Made for Goodness. Tutu’s beauty lies in the celebration of life based on dreams and hopes. His favourite words: “I am a prisoner of hope.” Only hope gives Tutu reason and the strength to live and struggle for a world that is worth living in. His hopes and vision of a good world is: Where there is equality for all, where no one goes to sleep hungry, where love and compassion rule supreme. Bad people in the world, however mighty and wealthy they may be, have to bite the dust. They die a dog’s

death with no one to weep for them, and a lot happy on their exit. Tutu’s hopeful nature has enabled him to have complete faith in the Almighty. He has no doubts about God, even though he is angry at times with Him for all kinds of injustices in the world, for the kind of oppression millions have to put up with. The Bible has been a constant guide for him, and his whole philosophy of life is based on it. What impresses him the most are the verses that tell us of Christ happily embracing crucifixion only to let all sinners have a chance to live. This reminds me of what inspirational writer Auriela McCarthy wrote in The Power of the Possible: “Allow

IndoAmerican News Publisher Emeritus: Dr. K.L. Sindwani Editor: Pramod Kulkarni Business Manager: Jawahar Malhotra Marketing Manager: Krishna Giri Community Reporter: Kalyani Giri Community Editor: Manasi Gokhale Administrative Manager: Vanshika Vipin Marketing & Food Correspondent: Jacob David Production Manager: Hussain Mandviwala correspondents Chicago: Nand Kapoor Ottawa: Avinash Gavai ®All rights reserved. No material herein or portions thereof may be published without the written consent of the publisher. The deadline for advertising and articles is 5 pm on Monday of each week. Please include self-addressed, stamped envelope for return of all unsolicited material. Published at 7457 Harwin Drive, Suite 262, Houston, Texas 77036. Tel: 713-789-NEWS or 6397 Fax: 713-789-6399, email: indoamericannews@yahoo.com, website: indoamerican-news.com

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hope to take you over. Allow hope to reign.” We know that hope sustains life. Hope should be the first resort and never the last. Hope is like a catalyst that boosts your confidence to work harder until you reach your goal. Live on hope and sleep in hope. Hope that your darkest period is but like the clouds that hover around and disappear. Hope that change is bound to come, and your share of good days are there for sure. Hope that you have the ability, the strength and the will to wade through the darkest tunnel and come out a winner. Believe that you are never hopeless.


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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

KITES: A Family Flying High

continued from page 15 looks like a big budget romance, Rakesh Roshan says the movie has “broken all norms of Hindi Movies’’. It has a visually different storytelling and a completely different grammar compared to other Bollywood films. In fact, Hrithik Roshan has also said in several interviews that this movie is a departure from anything he has ever done. As his father Rakesh Roshan puts it, “Indian filmmakers are stuck in the same format. Even though they have new ideas they are scared to experiment.’’ This then, is one film that is made with no fear. If the film succeeds it will be another feather in

Reliance BIG Pictures will release 'Kites' on 21st May 2010 in over 2300 screens worldwide The movie will simultaneously play in 1800 screens in India and over 500 screens overseas. This would make ‘Kites’ the biggest ever Indian release till date globally.

the cap for the Roshan family after Krissh, Koi Mil Gaya and Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai and will reaffirm the fact that the Roshans are one talented family. ‘’There are four main pillars of film-making. Production, Direction, Acting and Music. When we have all of them in the family why should we look outside?’’, says Rakesh Roshan. “We understand each other better and have the same vision. The fights are creative fights and never become ego problems!’’ Will Kites live up to it’s hype? Only time and movie reviews will tell! Go watch the movie and tell us what you thought of Kites. Your comments could feature in the newspaper!

TANA Launches Campaign for NRI’s Safety By Mohan Nannapaneni Over the past few years, we have become increasingly aware of several catastrophic events among the Telugu people in USA. There have been many incidents in which young Telugu people lost their lives or suffered other hardships causing immense grief to their families and friends. To aid Telugus in distress, Telugu Association of North America (TANA) has established the TANA Emergency Assistance and Management Team (TEAM Square) in October 2008. TEAM Square now has more than 200 volunteers across USA and Canada who are ready to extend a helping hand to fellow Telugus in need. Generous members and supporters of TANA ensured that TEAM Square has the necessary resources to serve the Telugu community. TEAM Square has quickly become the sole resource for Telugus in distress. In the short span of 18 months since its inception, TEAM Square volunteers extended their helping hand in almost 50 separate incidents and spent more than $120,000 in aid to the victims and their families. During this time, there have been more than 30 deaths among Telugu people including 14 deaths in eight separate automobile accidents (two in the last 10 days), five murders (three of them apparently by a family member), two suicides, two train accidents, and the rest due to other causes. Other incidents that TANA TEAM Square

helped with included a fire accident that destroyed the possessions of 17 students, two attacks on Telugu persons and some immigration related detention/deportation situations. The large number of deaths raised many concerns, par-

ticularly in India, regarding safety in the US. An analysis of the incidents that TEAM Square was involved in demonstrates some common points in these events. Adherence to safe practices could have helped avoid some of these mishaps. TANA is launching a safety awareness campaign to prevent future incidents. A TANA Team is planning to visit various cities and universities in the USA and Canada to conduct safety seminars for NRIs especially for students. TEAM Square volunteers have prepared brochures in Telugu and English with guidelines for safety. The brochures are being released

by Jayaram Komati, President of TANA. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”, said Jayaram Komati. “TANA will prominently promote the safety related information in our website and through the media. We plan to distribute thousands of these brochures both in print and electronic mediums and make them widely available in US and India.” TANA will make these brochures available at the consulate, travel agencies, Telugu associations and Indian Student Associations at all universities. TANA also plans to conduct safety awareness seminars at all universities and collaborate with the Indian government in promoting safety. Mohan Nannapaneni, Secretary, and Prasad Thotakura, Executive Vice-President, of TANA mentioned that TANA is also working with various insurance companies to make health, accident and life insurance available at low rates to Telugus, particularly students. The Board of Directors of TANA thanks all the volunteers and supporters for their continued support to TEAM Square and its efforts. TANA hopes that these efforts will help decrease the distressing incidents that have become all too familiar lately. The Safety guidelines can be found on TANA website at the following links: TANA Safety Guidelines in Telugu are available on : www.TANA.org/ Safety_Guide_Telugu.pdf TANA Safety Guidelines in English are available on : www.TANA.org/ Safety_Guide_English.pdf

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SEWA International USA Organizes First National Bhutanese Empowerment Conference ATLANTA: Anju Bhargava, Dharmic Representative from the Office of Interfaith and Neighborhood Partnerships at the White House, inaugurated the first national conference on Bhutanese refugees, organized by Sewa International USA at the Global Mall in Atlanta recently. Bharghava discussed the newly formed Hindu American Seva Charities (HASC) an umbrella organization of various Hindu Charities in the US, and its relevance to the Bhutanese. “President Obama would like all youth to have the opportunity to go to college,” she explained. HASC is actively encouraging its member organizations to join its campaign in Summer 2010 to educate underrepresented and minority youth – a group to which the Bhutanese now belong. “Since their first arrival in early 2008 in Atlanta, Sewa USA has been working with the Bhutanese refugees,” said Srikant Konda the CoChair of the Conference Organization Committee and former National President of Sewa USA. Ethnically cleansed from Bhutan, a Himalayan kingdom, Bhutanese of Nepali ancestry lived in poverty for two decades in remote refugee camps in southeastern jungles of Nepal, struggling to make a living while being stateless. The United Nations Human Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) provided assistance for these refugees since 1990’s. In 2007, UNHCR recommended a third country resettlement since neither Bhutan, nor Nepal were interested in absorbing them. The United States has agreed to accept 60,000 refugees between 2008-2012 of which 25,000 have already arrived in the US as of March 2010. Dr. Sree N. Sreenath, the National

SEWA International volunteers at the first National Bhutanese Empowerment Conference

President of Sewa USA, and a Professor at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio said, “As the Bhutanese refugee population tripled in the last year, we expanded our services to thirty-five cities across the United States.” The Conference conceived by Sewa USA as a platform to nurture national and local leadership among the Bhutanese through mentoring, sharing successes and challenges. Swami Narayan Adhikari, a Bhutanese refugee himself, exhorted the Bhutanese community to be “united in the face of diversity and challenging problems the community faces in resettlement while maintaining their traditions and humanity”. Dr. Lopita Nath, Fulbright Scholar, and Assistant professor in the Department of History at the University of the Incarnate Word, San Antonio, enlightened the delegates about the economic, cultural and political history of the Lhotshampas – as the Bhutanese of Nepali origin are known. A women’s self-help group presentation by Ohio delegates Manju Rastogi from Sewa USA, and Bhuta-

nese youth leader Manju Dhungana, followed this. Progress in cleaning, sewing and weaving as micro enterprise and employment projects for women were discussed. Other delegates presented experience with healthcare initiatives, affordable lowcost housing options, and acquisition of free refurbished computers for students. Ralph Parker, a veteran American resettlement volunteer and friend of the Bhutanese, who first came across the Bhutanese in Atlanta, stressed the need for coming up with a resettlement emergency fund. Youth Development, Cultural Preservation and Adaptation, Employment and Income Generation, Women’s Issues, Housing – permanent living, Education, Health Insurance, and Safety, were elected to be the top problems concerning the Bhutanese resettlement in the USA. The delegates then went on to discuss potential solutions to these challenges, this time in thematic groups to facilitate individual interaction while building consensus. A high level of interest was shown towards discussing solutions to cul-

tural preservation, learning English as Second Language (ESL), permanent housing assistance, self-employment through starting small businesses, and, mentorship of entrepreneurs. “Contrary to many refugee groups, Bhutanese seem to have a high desire to become self-sufficient as quickly as they can. Refugee resettlement agencies applaud the sprit of Bhutanese in the US to help each other and the community,” said Venkat Santanaraman, Sewa USA National General Secretary, and a Houston resident. Sreenath pointed out the advantages of having a singular, majority voice that will facilitate the Bhutanese to gain resources from the government and private sources. The delegates drew up a list of volunteers to form a National Steering Committee to explore the feasibility of forming a national Bhutanese organization to further the refugee interests tentatively named as the Bhutanese Association of North America (BhANA). Dr. Navin Twarakavi, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences from Auburn University, AL, pledged his support to connect academicians and professional agricultural extension consultants to Bhutanese interested in farming in the Southeast USA. Santi Ram Poudel, Bhutanese delegate from Cleveland, Ohio discussed the Department of Labor, Job Corps Program that some Bhutanese youth are taking advantage of currently and more should. This program for ages 16-24 could train in vocations from carpentry, to computers, to nursing in 6 months to a year. This free program is a benefit of $20,000 (paid by the government) and is offered at 122 centers across the United States. The conference delegates passed

three major resolutions: (i) appreciating and commending the US Government, UNHCR, resettlement agencies, selfless individuals, spiritual organizations, temples of Dharmic traditions to resettle Bhutanese families; (ii) reiterate support to the Bhutanese families irrespective of their religious belief, ethnicity or political affiliation; and (iii) support the efforts of Bhutanese families in practicing their culture, arts, language and religion. Dr. Dwivedi, Professor Emeritus, Howard University, Washington DC, and a member of the Sewa USA Board of Directors, then shared his experience about America being a land of opportunities and the latent potential of Project Krishi to transform the refugees quality of life. The Regional Director of Toastmasters Club, Mr. Gurinder Garucha encouraged young delegates to nurture their public speaking skills and explore scholarship opportunities through the Toastmasters club in America. “The conference generated a lot of much-needed conversations amongst Bhutanese community leaders to collaborate and learn from each other,” said Hari Bhakta Pyakurel, Ohio Bhutanese delegate. Sita, Hari’s younger sister, a bright straight ‘A’ tenth grade high school student and youth delegate said, “It is imperative for the Bhutanese community to organize in the USA.” SEWA International USA (www. sewusa.org), is 501 (c) (3) a nonprofit, volunteer-based service organization. SEWA workers are unpaid volunteers who are high-achieving high-tech and IT professionals, doctors, scientists, professors, social workers, attorneys, business people, and, students. Through its Bhutanese

Kelloggs Business India Conference Successfully Held in Chicago By Nand Kapoor CHICAGO: According to a World Bank report, India has the 11th largest economy in the world. In addition, its GDP is expected to overtake that of Europe in the next 15 years. Most speakers at the conference this year addressed issues relating to India’s consumers. The resilience of the Indian economy during the global recession has added intrigue to the India success story of the 21st century. As India powers up to meet the challenges of a new economic order, the Kellogg India Business Conference (KIBC) offers you the opportunity to listen to and network with India’s best and brightest industry talents. Over the years, KIBC has become a leading forum to know more about India’s remarkable success. On May 8, the conference started when Mr. Sunil Chopra welcomed all the speakers on behalf of faculty and students present. Ambassador H.S.Puri said , “In the line with our long held view, the country has fared extremely well from a growth perspective and India has definitely shrugged off the global headwinds. India’s success story is

From Left: Guneet Singh Bedi; Ankur Jain; Milind Kopikare; Murali Veeraiyan; Shailesh Rao(Managing Director Google India); Nand Kapoor (Former National Vice President of Association of Indians in America); Mithun Subramaniam)

almost two decades old.” Padmasree Warrior, chief technology officer at Cisco Systems said the technology company was focused on numbers. “India will see the largest human migration to urban areas, with 31 villagers arriving in a city every minute, in the next ten years,” she said. She correlated this future with a networked future which will transform the nature of work. India, she said, was a key market for Cisco for pilot studies of innovative products for this future and as a consumer market. For D. Shivakumar, vice president and managing director of Nokia in India, the country translated into the

largest market for mobile phones in the world. He said the country is much more brand-driven market as compared to China. “The consumer there works in a different way,” he said. “Indians are very brand and value conscious. For example, customized ringtone sales for mobile phones are driven by star names.” Expanding further on this theme after the conference, he said that entertainment will lead the convergence market in India. At 1:20, the ratio of mobiles to PCs is the highest in the world. This, he said, would have implications for space storage as well. “Unlike Western markets, we see large-scale storage primarily

From Right: Dr. Deepak Jain; Ambassador H.S.Puri, Indian Permanent Representative in UN; Mr. Nand Kapoor, Former National Vice President of Association of Indians in America.

happening on PCs,” he said. Shailesh Rao, Managing Director of Google India, concentrated his talk on India’s 43 million small businesses. He said the company was focused on introducing new products, such as an SMS blog and search through mobile phones, for them. According to him, the Indian consumer was especially value conscious. For example, the SMS blog was popular and brought in more revenue than the search service because small businesses saw value

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, mAY 21 , 2010 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM

in promoting their products through SMS blogs rather than expending revenue through SMS search. He also personally interacted with students , motivated and guided them regarding there future prospects. The technology focus of the speakers was not intentional said Gaurav Panwar, co-chair of the conference. He said technology had played an important role in the new India and the conference reflected this in its speaker list.


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Bangar Reddy Awarded Honorary Degree for Community Service HOUSTON: Mr. Bangar Reddy received an Honorary Degree from Houston Community College (HCC) on May 15th 2010. The ceremony was witnessed by thousands of Houstonians at Reliant Center. When Mr. Reddy’s name was proposed by Trustee Neeta Sane for this honor, the Board of Trustees of HCC unanimously approved. It’s a special honor not only for Mr. Bangar Reddy but for the entire Indo-American community, as the selection was done from the entire Greater Houston area community for the outstanding credentials and commitment to continued community service for more than a Decade. Neeta Sane, Trustee and Vice Chair of HCC said, “It was a great pleasure to award HCC Honorary degree to an outstanding member of the community, Mr. Bangar Reddy. His community service has set a footprint for many who wish to devote their time and talent for others. It is a great pride for us to have Mr. Reddy as a role model for our younger generation.” Bangar Reddy is one of the founders of Youth Leadership Development Program known as YLDP, when he was a President of India Culture Center (ICC) in year 2008. In his encouraging and inspiring remarks to the youth he said, “It’s a good feeling to receive such an Honor from HCC, an institution representing the community at large. Let this Honor be an inspiration to the youth to follow the footsteps in the community service”. He added the quote of Mahatma Gandhi, “The measurement of any service to the community is the support it receives from the community”. Reddy added, “Serve without any expectations in the return, the awards and rewards will follow you. You don’t need any pre-qualification, credentials, and offer from Institution or Organization to do community service. It’s the willingness and motivation within you will drive you to ample of opportunities of service which in turn will help you shape up your bright future, and finally give you the pride and satisfaction that your life is meant for a purpose.” Hon. Sanjiv Arora, Consul General of India, Houston sent a complimentary note to Mr. Reddy “Please accept my heartiest congratulations and warm greetings on being awarded an Honorary Degree by Houston Community College (HCC) on Saturday, 15 May, 2010. This is a well deserved honor for your dedicated service to the community at large, particularly to the Indian American community, in Greater Houston. I compliment HCCS for celebrating your tremen-

dent, India Culture Center (ICC). “On behalf of my fellow YLDP classmates, I want to thank you for the work you put in to make YLDP a worthwhile and enriching experience. -Hamsika Chandrasekhar,YLDPClass of 2009 Student. “As a student from YLDP’s first graduating class, I have witnessed the efforts our Program Director, Mr. Bangar Reddy, has taken to promote philanthropy and encourage intellectual curiosity in today’s youth.” -- Preity Ponnaganti, YLDP Class of 2009 Bangar Reddy with Trustee and Vice Chair Student. “I am very proud of Mr. of HCC, Neeta Sane Bangar Reddy. He is shindous services to our community in ing star of our community. I have a befitting manner by conferring an witnessed that he has done a lot for Honorary Degree upon you. I look the community. He is still quietly forward to our continuing interaction performing his duties towards the and cooperation, and wish you all the community, particularly for the youth best in your steadfast efforts to serve without any expectation of recognition. the society”. -- Dinesh Shah, President-Elect, HisHolinessSriChinnaJeeyarSwamiji, Acharya and Founder of Jeeyar Indo-American Political Action Educational Trust (JET) blessed Mr. Committee (IAPAC). “He is very well-deserving of this Reddy “Our mangalasasanams to you for receiving a wonderful reward prestigious award and we are all for the Local Community for the proud of his accomplishment. He services you have extended. This no is very dedicated and passionate in doubt inspires all our youth to follow all his work in the community, and you for excellence. God bless you and should be admired for his zest in passing on these values to the next see you soon.” Reddy also attributes the credit to generation.” -- Jugal Malani, President, India many non-profit Organizations and institutions including ICC, Consul- House. “Giving back to the community is ate General of India-Houston, YLDP Houston, India House, IAPAC, IACF, one of the values that BAPS instills IACCGH, CLUB24, NetIP, Telugu young Indian Americans. This helps Cultural Association, SEWA, BAPS, them learn to share the world they live Gujarati Samaj, Sri Ashtalakshmi in with those around them and help Temple and JET USA Inc and public the youth mature into responsible officials who helped and given him citizens. I would like to congratulate the opportunity to work with them Mr. Bangar Reddy on his honorary degree”. for the past several years -- Nilkanth Patel, President, Reddy received many compliments from fellow community leaders for BAPS Charities. “We are proud of your services to his dedication and devotion for the community at the time of this honor. the community. I am personally and “It was a very inspiring moment for IACF as an organization are proud all of us to watch Bangar Reddy being of our working relationship and your conferred on the Honorary Degree support. -- Bobby Singh, President, Indofor Outstanding Community Service by the Houston Community Col- American Charity Foundation lege. In the midst of the 8000 people (IACF). “On behalf of the YLDP Executive gathered at the Reliant Stadium at the Graduation ceremony; a star of India Committee, I want to congratulate Culture Center shone on the Houston Mr. Bangar Reddy for the recognition and on receiving the HCC Hon. horizon”. -- Swapan Dhairyawan, Presi- Degree - adding another feather in

your cap!.” -- Sushma Bhan, Program Director, Youth Leadership Development Program (YLDP). “Congratulations on your great accomplishment of Honorary Degree for Community Service from Houston Community College. You deserve it. Your selfless hard work and dedication to community service makes Indians proud.” -- Raghavender Nednur, President, Telugu Cultural Association (TCA).

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, MAY 21 , 2010• ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM

“Bangaru in Mr. Reddy’s mother tongue Telugu, means GOLDEN. Mr.Reddy has lived up to his name and indeed set a Gold standard for community service.” -- Krishna Vavilala, Foundation For India Studies (FIS). “It is great news for Houston Community, especially for the IndoAmerican Community.” -- Keshu Patel, Former Past President, India Culture Center (ICC), Houston.


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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

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SOCIETY

online edition: www.indoamerican-news.com

Sri Meenakshi Temple Celebrates “Vedic Heritage Day One”

The excitement continued without a break, with Smt. Nalini Sadagopan, staging a musical dance item “Bhagavata Purana Potpourri” Choreographed superbly, each segment exceeded the expectations of the audience and was executed almost flawlessly in spite of the many constraints the organizers had. Then came the “Varaha and Narasimha Avatars” of Vishnu, a skit well coordinated by the teachers, Sri. Suraj Subramanian and Smt. Priti Kalvakaalva. Dr Partha Krishnamurthy, teacher of the Bhagavata Purana-1 class, then had his students talk about the characters they got to know in Bhagavatam, most kids being in the appropriate costume for that. They then shared a wonderful video play, that they put together, depicting the life of “Dhruva”. Sri Chandrasekhar Raghu, VHS Principal, and Kotesh Rao, VHS Coordinator, took the stage to recognize the 19 children who achieved “Perfect Attendance” this school year from the Junior classes. Each child got a colorful book and a nice certificate with baby Krishna “Varaha and Narasimha Avatars” of Vishnu, a skit well coordinated bysmiling! The teachers and volthe teachers, had their students talk about the characters they got tounteers who worked tirelessly all know in Bhagavatam round the year to make this event a success were also recognized. every other Sunday for 9 months in also answered some questions about Sri T.A. Gnanasundaram, Treaa year. On a typical class-day, there the deity they were dressed as and are 16 parallel classes being taught sang Muthuswami Dikshitar’s “Shy- surer of Sri Meenakshi Temple, spoke on Panchatantra and other tales, aamale Meenakshi” in chorus. Then briefly about the huge accomplishRamayana, Bhagavata Purana, and came the “States of Bharat”, again a ment of the VHS over the last 10 Mahabharata - to Values, Religious costume parade where the kids were years. Dr Venugopal Menon, a vetDisciplines, Vedanta, and Bhagavad dressed in the local costume of each eran MTS devotee and a great source Gita. The 28 VHS teachers follow of the states of India, very well pre- of inspiration for the VHS, graciously Poojya Swami Dayananda Saras- sented under the guidance of teachers attended the event and expressed wati’s Poorna Vidya Vedic Heritage Smt. Jayasri Satish, and Smt. Priya huge interest in every child’s perforcurriculum with two supplementary Ravishankar. This was followed by mance. Sri K.R. Thiagarajan, MTS Assembly sessions teaching Shlo- the Bhagavata Purana students doing director, was pleased with the quality kas and Bhajans. In addition, spe- a “Jeopardy on Krishna’s birth”, well of the YEP. Smt. Chitra Kumar, VHS cial events like Saraswati Pooja, Sri guided by their teachers, Smt. Nalini Volunteer Lead, spoke about the core Rama Navami, Nama Ramayanam Ram, Sri. Aashish Pandya, and Smt. team of volunteers and thanked each of them profusely. The kids who had shlokathon, Gandhi Jayanti field Dehuti Pandya. trips, Special guest lectures, and a Kids from the Ramayana class showcased Bharat’s cultural heritage fun-filled Holi, are all celebrated with then enacted the “Characters from with their flawless performances then children participating in full vigor! Ramayana” (coordinated by teachers joined their teachers and the audiThe VHS is a fully volunteer-driven Smt. Aparna Joshi and Smt. Akila ence in the Youth Center where they initiative of Sri Meenakshi Temple. It Chander), followed by a skit on the enjoyed a sumptuous lunch catered was launched back in year 2000 “Battles of Ramayana” with bows, by Udipi Café, The temple will have another great when a group of parents and volun- arrows, maces, monkeys, and the teers made the commitment and lit ten-headed Ravana (coordinated by day of bhajans and performances by the lamp of knowledge. Enrollments their teacher Smt Priya Chandru). the senior students of VHS on Sungrew steadily year after year. Many Then came another wonderful skit, day May 23, at 9 AM in the Kalyana of the children have gone through “Searching for Sita”, with Hanuman Mandapam. For more details, please several years of Poorna Vidya cur- meeting Sita in Sri Lanka, very well see the VHS blog spot: http://mtsvhs. riculum and it showed clearly at the coordinated by their teacher, Smt. blogspot.com. YEP on May 16th. Porkodi Lavu. By An Inspired Parent PEARLAND: Sri Meenakshi Temple Vedic Heritage School (VHS) held Day One of its Year End Program (YEP) on May 16th, 2010. The event, focusing mainly on kids aged 4-9, was the culmination of the 2009-2010 year. The Vedic Heritage School is a tremendous resource for the Houston area Hindu community with an enrollment of 282 children (ages 4 to 17 years) with almost 2 hours of classes held

The YEP started with the priest, Sri Manicka Bhattar, lighting the lamp and chanting the scriptures. Four out of of the 13 graduating “Class of 2010” students presented the essence of Bhagavad Gita from their own perspective. This was followed by the richly costumed “Little Deities”, kids aged 4-5 from the Beginners class, dressed as Siva, Vishnu, Brahma, Narada, and more, guided by their teachers Smt. Lakshmi Venkateswaran and Sri. Srivaths. They

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, mAY 21 , 2010 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


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SOCIETY

Local Chapter of GOPIO Organizes Motivational Seminars

HOUSTON: GOPIO Houston, a chapter of the Global Organization of People of Indian Origin held two programs. The first program on “Immigration” and the second was a repeat of “Living Your Greatest Life” with Master Del Pe on Sunday May 16, 2010 at the University of Houston

Master Del Pe, was kind enough to return to Houston at the request of GOPIO Houston. Master Del Pe talked about what holds you back in life and gave insight of how to overcome these obstacles. The modern sage and world renowned miraculous healer, described the concept of flying with

the difference it makes. Founder of more than 15 corporate and not-for-profit organizations internationally, Master Del Pe has studied world cultures, world philosophies and world religions and lived in many countries before he settled down as an entrepreneur in Houston, Texas,

From Left: Somarajan Nair, Chad Patel, Sam Kannappan, MasterDel Pe, Uma Mantravadi, Abby Kannappan, Omkar Khare.

Main campus. Uma Mantravadi received her Juris Doc (J.D.) from University of Houston, in 1987. Mantravadi’s law practice emphasizes highly in US Immigration Laws. The Law Offices of Mantravadi provide services in green cards (employment based, family based), nurses petitions, temporary work visas (H-1B, H-2, H-3, L-1 and E-2), Student visas, Artist visas (P-3), Fiancee visas, Naturalization, and deportation matters (including bond). Uma Mantravadi returned to the UH main campus to provide very valuable information about the current immigration laws which would impact graduating university students and currently employed professionals. She described what options are available in general and specifically for STEM which stands for Science Technology Engineering and Math.

fully stretched wings of spirituality and material aspect of life in order to live a full life. He explained that without this balance, none of them could be sustained. He emphasized the importance of consistency and staying focused on one’s goal in order to reach it. His example of Albert Einstein being known for E=MC2 as a bottom line for each individual to leave their legacy. Master Del Pe described’Life’ as a flow, where giving and receiving were a continuous process. Frustration, he went on to say, is when you cannot manage your expectations. Master Del Pe explained trinity of heart, mind and soul by the way of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh and described on how to focus on these to mediate for the betterment of life. He gave several breathing techniques to relieve stress, to the audience and asked them to try it for a week and see

USA. He was raised in Asia of a Chinese-Filipino descent and educated by the European missionaries until he became an engineer. He studied many martial arts forms and mastered Japanese Karate. He also became an international expert on the 12 styles of meditation, the 8 types of yoga and energy me dicine which qualified him to publish the book, Hidden Dangers of Meditation and Yoga.

Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

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IACF is Seeking Candidates for 10 College Scholarships HOUSTON: For the past 20 years, the Indo-American Charity Foundation (IACF) has provided the high school seniors of our community financial help to pay for their college tuition, books and living expenses by awarding them college scholarships. This one-time scholarship grant of $2,000 goes directly to the college bound students and benefits them to partially defer their college expenses. In an effort to encourage and assist college bound high school students from our community, this year Indo-American Charity Foundation is awarding these need and merit based IACF College Scholarships of $2,000 each, to 10 qualified recipients. To qualify the need based criteria, these scholarships are limited to students whose parents’ combined 2009 income is less than $100,000. According to Dr. Rupa Iyer the IACF Scholarship Team Leader, to qualify for the IACF College Scholarship, each high school senior must have admission to an accredited college, maintain good academic grades, teacher recommendations and write an essay. Keka Kar the Scholarship Coordinator said that the essay topic “Going Green – A Moral Responsi-

bility and / or Global Economic Opportunity” was decided to highlight the spirit of environmental awareness and economic opportunity. According to Bobby Singh, President of Indo-American Charity Foundation, the IACF College Scholarship is the only IACF sponsored charity program that is exclusively targeted to help people with Indian origin. Indo-American Charity Foundation is a non-profit charitable organization that helps the underprivileged and needy with monetary and volunteer work contributions through established and emerging organizations (501.C3) in the Greater Houston Area. The application deadline for IACF College Scholarships is June 30th to give potential applicants additional time to write the essay and fulfill other requirements. The applications for the 2010 IACF College Scholarship can be downloaded from the www. iacfhouston.com or can be requested from IACF Directors. Eligible students can contact, Dr. Rupa Iyer at iyerrupa@yahoo.com, Mrs. Keka Kar at kekakar@gmail. com or by calling Bobby Singh at 832-766-0680.

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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

SOCIETY

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BJP’s Tarun Vijay on Challenges Facing India

The National Council of Overseas Friends of BJP will meet in Houston on May 22-23. Tarun Vijay, presently the National Spokesperson, Bharatiya Janata Party, (BJP) and Director, Dr. Shyama Prasad Mookerjee Research Foundation, a  nationalist think tank based at the BJP Headquarters, will grace the occasion.  A public meeting will be held at India House on Saturday, May 22 from 7 pm to 9.30 pm. Tarun Vjay will speak on 'Current challenges facing India'. Tarun Vijay is a highly ac- RF). His columns in the newspaclaimed author, social worker and pers and on the web are very popufreelance journalist. He was the lar with the youth. He is noted for editor of the Rashtriya Swayamse- his incisive, powerful and engagvak Sangh (RSS) weekly in Hindi, ing style of writing which captures Panchajanya, from 1986 to Febru- the imagination of youngsters eaary 2008, and is a columnist for gerly searching for some clarity of The Times of India. He also writes political thought. for the Daily Pioneer. He is currently workWould you rather lose money by advertising somewhere else ing as the director of or make money the Dr. Syamaprasad NEWSPAPER Mookerjee Research Advertise where it matters Foundation (DSM713-789-6397

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INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, mAY 21 , 2010 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


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HOUSTON: 50 years of Gujarat State was celebrated in a a widely attended event on on Saturday, May 15, 2010. Various programs were organized during the day by the Guajrati Samaj of Houston in association with other organization (FOBJ, BAPS, LPSH, VPSS, and Yogi Divine ETC.). The Gujarat Golden Jubilee celebration was formally launched by Prakeshbhai Desai, President of GSH,Vrajesh Patel, Chief Trustee of GSH and Ramesh Shah of FOBJP and by the GSH Trustee Board. Emmanuel Centre was the perfect choice as the venue for this grand event. Taste of Gujarat and Rangoli competitions was coordinated by Sapana Shah with help of Manish Patel (President of LPSH). There were 11 entries for food competition and four entries for Rangoli competition. The Gujarati community’s artistic side of was on display for the invitees to enjoy. Rohiniben Patel, Sohiniben Desai and Susilaben Patel were the judges for these competitions. Most of the food items and rangoli was prepared with Garvi Gujarat theme. Free snacks were the added bonus at the event by House of Spices (Garvi Gujarat). Authentic Guajrati dinner was provided free to all present. The gala event started at 5:00 pm and went on till for hours afterwards. The Chief Coordinator, Nisha Mirani remarked that the glorious era began

Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

Maro Gujarat Saras Che at 50 Years! From Left: Ramanbhai Jani, Prakaesh Desai, Gordon Quan, Vrajesh Patel, Ken Matthew,Ashwin Patel, K.P. George, Niranjan Patel and Nisha Mirani

From Left: Prakeshbhai Desai,Raju Patel, Sapna Shah, Nisha Mirani, Yogina Patel, Ajit Patel and Himanshu Patel

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five decades ago with the blessing of Ravinshankar Maharaj. She also said we are inheritors of Gandhi and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s teachings. She requested every Gujarati of Houston to join hands and act with full vigor to achieve glorious goals and enhance the image of Gujarati Samaj of Houston in Texas. The colorful part of the event called the ‘Cultural Evening’ was coordinated by Yogina Patel and Sureshbhai Patel (Darbar) with energetic youth volunteers of Yogi Divine Group. The auditorium was packed to full capacity with around 1500 people. Parking spaces were quickly filled up and people who arrived after 6 pm were unable to get entry into the hall and had to leave disappointed. Among those who attended the gala event was Ramanbhai Jani (India), Gordon Quan, former Houston city councilman, Councilmen Ken Matthew (Stafford), and Thomas Abraham (Sugar Land) also attended. Also present were past presidents of Gujarati Samaj, religious leaders, leading radio station organizers and other social leaders. The attendees were treated to exhilarating performances by over 160 participants. The dancers started young at four years of age and were given stiff competition by participants aged upto 70 years! Key events of Gujarat’s history, spanning from the pre-historic era to modern times were presented by them in their unique individual styles. Dhaval Patel and Yogina Patel as Ranglo and Rangli (Gujarati Bhavai) enacted their roles as emcees of the event admirably. Himanshu Patel, Raju Patel, Bobby Patel, Sanjay Shah and Amit Pathak provided light, sound and stage management efficently.

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, MAY 21 , 2010• ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


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Indo American News • Friday, May 21 , 2010

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