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Indo American News • Friday, July 16 , 2010

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Friday, July 16 2010 | Vol. 29, No. 29

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A Celebration for Ghazal Lovers Two ghazal maestros Bhupinder & Mitalee come to enthrall all ghazal lovers in Houston in an everlasting performance on August 6, 8pm at Cullen Performance Hall, University of Houston. An

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Divinity and Ingenuity Guide a Program that Feeds Millions IACCGH Hosts Seminar on “ Sharpening Your Strategy”

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Anupam Kher as Pratham Goodwill Ambassador Story on Pg 15

Bharti Kher’s Crouching Elephant Sculpture Fetches £900,000 in London

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Opportunities to Enrich your Children’s Summer Experience Story on Pg 21 Swami Ramdev Motivates Youth Audience Story on Pg 22

Dileep Rao Co-stars in Inception

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Sugar Sammy: Comedy’s New Rock Star

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Houston Gears Up for the 3rd Annual Ratha Yatra sion to promote the cultural heritage and traditional art forms from the state of Orissa and the greater India. The Govindaji Gaudiya Matha is Houston are propagating the essence of the Sanatana Dharma or the eternal religion that has its origin in the very birth of civilization that dates back to over several thousands of years on the Indo-Gangetic plains of Northern India. The tenets of Hinduism or Sanatana Dharma are Harmony of Religions, Realization of Ishvara or the ultimate divine force of nature, non-violence and unity of existence. The Houston Ratha Yatra will host a colorfully decorat-

By Surath Rath The Odisha Culture Center (OCC) and Shree Govindaji Gaudiya Matha in collaboration with the Hindus of the Greater Houston, Hindu Worship Society and ISKCON are all set to celebrate this grand festival of procession of the Lord Jagannath, Lord of the Universe, at 5 pm on July 24 in the pavilion surrounding the India House complex in Houston. Rath Yatra is a yearly commemoration of the chariot festival of the city of Puri (or Purusottama Puri) on the east coast of the state of Odisha in India. The people of the greater Houston and surrounding cities come together on this day to celebrate the appearance of the Lord Jagannath to millions of His devotees. The celebration is rooted in the ancient Indian Philosophy also known as the Vedanta Philosophy of universal brotherhood that identifies the existence of the Supreme in all beings. People from all walks of life irrespective of their caste, creed or religion participate in the festival. OCC is a fast growing nonprofit institution in the city of Houston with a dedicated mis-

ed 22-foot high Ratha. The parade will be accompanied by traditional devotional music parade (Sankirtans) with cymbals and drums by various temple organizations in Houston. The parade will be preceded by a beautiful cultural program showcasing various Indian classical dances and instrumental recitals presented by well known schools in Greater Houston area and artists from India. The members of Odisha Culture Center (OCC) and Shree Govindaji Gaudiya Math extend a warm welcome to the people of Houston and surrounding cities to come to this festival and enjoy a day of camaraderie, friendship and above all devotion to the supreme reality, the ultimate divinity that resides within all of us. Let this celebration reminds us all of the charioteer, the supreme consciousness within each of us, that is nothing but the truth and nothing but the whole and nothing but the ultimate indestructible source of energy for the entire cosmos. For further information visit www.houstonrathyatra.org or call 832- 225- 2376 More about Ratha Yatra on page 9

Tagore Society, UH Sign Declaration for Tagore Scholarship By Jacob David HOUSTON: One lucky student to be qualified by an independent review committee appointed by the Tagore Society of Houston and the University of Houston will receive the Tagore Passport Operating Scholarship to visit India. He / She will get to research into the life and tradition of the Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore’s work and study his world philosophies. The student will be awarded $5,000 by the Tagore Society and an additional $1,000 by the University of Houston. An event to sign the Tagore Passport Scholarship declaration was held at the MD Anderson Library, University of Houston in the Elizabeth D. Rockwell Pavilion on July 12, 2010 between 5:30 - 6:30 PM. With the 150th anniversary celebrations of Rabindranath Tagore coming up next year, this event marks an increase in the upbeat

Dr Surjit Dasgupta, Dr. John Roberts and Dr. Wyman Herendeen sign the formal declaration for Tagore Passport Scholarship that will benefit a student $6,000 for research.

tempo of added cultural events honoring the great poet. Dr. John Antel, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs chaired

the meeting. He said that the University of Houston has recognized India four years ago by introducing the Hindi language as part of the

Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore, great literary son of India whose works make a deep impact on the world even today.

International Language Study program. The addition of the Tagore Passport Scholarship, he said, will now help the university broaden its sphere of international educacontinued on page

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Tagore Society and UH Sign Declaration for Tagore Passport Scholarship Continued from Page 1

tion, making courses more attractive. The university also has new plans to introduce a full course covering the History of India. He then thanked Dr. John Roberts, the Dean of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences, a transplant from Ohio State University, for being part of this valuable scholarship program. Dr Antel acknowledged the major contribution of Consul General of India, Sanjeev Arora, for promoting this scholarship that honors Tagore’s legacy. Raju Banga, President of the Tagore Society with whom Dr. Antel had interesting dialogues facilitated the scholarship to reality, he said. The Tagore Passport Scholarship program will be introduced in the fall semester allowing students to travel to India by Spring of 2011 to study at the Viswabharati University, at Shantiniketan, a campus known for its open air classes, lush landscapes and peaceful environment. Inviting the consul general to speak, Sanjeev Arora said that Gurudev Tagore (noble teacher) was a great son of India, a great painter, poet, essayist, reformer and humanist. He was a great author of humanity. He supported India’s freedom through his writings, he said. Gandhiji who was aptly named “The Mahatma” by Tagore was keenly influenced by his writings. Tagore, he said, was known for his “profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse.” The consul general added that the history of pre-independence India and the glorious struggle during, was inspired by Tagore’s writings. Tagore’s collective work of 103 poems, Gitanjali won the Nobel

prize and he made India proud, he added. My favorite verses are “If they answer not to your call, walk alone” noting that this verse inspired Gandhiji. Modern leaders of India like Pranab Mukherjee and Natwar Singh used these verses as opening lines in speeches made at the UN assembly. Another favorite verse that Natwar Singh used is, “where the mind is without fear,

karuni, a native of Kolkotta, India. She called Tagore a great visionary, being able to see so far ahead of his time. “Even now his works appeal to the masses.” Viswabharati founded in Shantiniketan she said was known for promoting environmental consciousness learning with, in and from nature. “This will give the student from University of Houston to get the

by me to Chitra Divakaruni in her living room.” Dr. Surjit Dasgupta said. She immediately thought this was a stellar idea and worked with Dr. James Kastely, Director of Fine Arts and Creative Writing to make this possible. “Now I am glad that the Tagore society and the University of Houston made this a reality. This scholarship program will highlight the 150th Anniver-

The Tagore Society meeting attendees and supporters made the Tagore Passport scholarship possible.

and the head is held high, where knowledge is free. . .” The consul general expressed his pleasure that this scholarship was now underway that it would create great awareness and partnership with University of Houston to broaden the understanding of India’s contribution to world literature. A reading of two famous Tagore’s poems followed, Sacred India and Where the Mind is Without Fear, read by the world famous author and poet, Chitra Banerjee Diva-

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total native experience.” Tagore has written over 1000 poems, he was a multifaceted genius (as Consul general Sanjeev Arora spoke highly of him), a champion who encouraged multicultural education, traveled extensively all over the world to promote intercultural studies. She then thanked the Tagore society for giving her a chance to do a reading of the poems by the great Nobel Laureate Tagore. “The Tagore Society was born as an idea, a simple question posed

sary celebrations that will be held next year to promote Tagore’s legacy and importance to the world. “I’d like to borrow the lines of Neil Armstrong, ‘this is a small step for the Tagore society but a giant step to establish the legacy of his works.” Surjit Dasgupta thanked Chitra Divakaruni for her initiative and drive in helping make this happen. The declaration was then signed by Dr. Surjit Dasgupta, Dr. John Roberts and Wyman Herendeen,

Professor and chair of the Department of English, making the independent review committee active and the funds available for the student to travel and study in India. The meeting was concluded by Dr.Wyman Herendeen, who applauded the initiative taken by Chitra Divakaruni and others in making the Tagore society fully functional. Dr. Herendeen said that the contribution made by the Tagore Society and the University of Houston will now help further education and promote world literature. The meeting concluded with a social gathering with hors d’oeuvres - cheese, white wine, fruit and crackers. The Tagore Society is planning more events that will promote Rabindranath Tagore’s genius. One of the upcoming events to highlight Tagore’s cultural contribution to society and the world is when Ustad Amjad Ali Khan is set to visit Houston along with his sons Amaan Ali Khan and Ayaan Ali Khan accompanied by Vineet Vyas and Anubrata Chatterjee, to be held at the Cullen Hall, University of Houston on July 16, 2010. For details visit, www.iaahouston. com or contact TSH at 832-6474428. Indo-American News (ISSN 887-5936) is published weekly on every Friday (for a subscription price of $30 per year) by Indo-American News Inc., 7457 Harwin Dr., Suite 262, Houston, Texas 77036, Tel: 713-789-6397, Fax: 713-789-6399, Email: indoamericannews@ yahoo.com. Periodical postage paid at Houston, Texas. POSTMASTER: Please send address changes to Indo-American News, 7457 Harwin Dr., Suite 262, Houston, Texas 77036.

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Divinity and Ingenuity Guide a Program that Feeds Millions

By Jawahar Malhotra HOUSTON: While we went through the buffet line and ate Gujarati food at round tables in the spacious auditorium of the Vallabh Priti Sewa Samaj on the city’s southwest side, a short video explained the work of the group that feeds millions of under privileged school children each day in India . With bar graphs and maps, it showed how the Akshaya Patra program grew from its humble beginnings ten years ago when it fed 1,500 village school children in South India and heard many entrepreneurs, industrialists and politicians pay tribute to its accomplishments. But it wouldn’t have even gotten started without Divine intervention. It was a vision to make good on the vows of the monkhood that propelled Swami Madhu Prasad Dasa in Bangalore to devise a program that would help the immense humanity in India . Simplicity was at its core: provide at least one good hot meal a day to a child whose family could not do so and the child would be able to concentrate on studying and continue to come to school. And it put the mind of M. P. Dasa, a former electrical engineer, to work to solve the problem of logistics. “It had been tried before, 35 years ago,” recalled Swami C. C. Dasa, the Governing Board Trustee who is on a tour of cities in the US to visit the Akshaya Patra chapters that support the program. He was in Hous-

ton this past Saturday and met with about 150 donors and volunteers at a hastily arranged meeting by the head of the Houston Chapter, Dr. K. T. Shah. “The popular film star M.G. Ramachandran (more widely

programs. A retired gastroenterologist, Dr. Shah is a well-known community activist who sought out a cause that would keep him active after he had quit his medical practice about 2

was delicious,” said Shah According to Shah, who is blunt in his criticism of failed government programs and praises the effectiveness of this one, the main reason is that “these swamis do not

From left, Dr. K. T. Shah, Mala Shah, Vasant Shah and Ashok Garg at the lamp lighting ceremony before the meeting.

known as MGR) who later became Chief Minister of Tamilnadu tried in vain to institute a similar program,” continued Dasa, “but failed due to the bureaucracy.” Now, the state has the nation’s second highest literacy rates due to AP’s successful feeding

years ago. After they met with the AP US Director, Madhu Shridar in Boston , Shah and his wife Vasant visited an AP kitchen in Gujarat , toured a school and ate the food. “I was impressed by the arrangements as I walked around and tasted the food, which

talk about religion, but only about feeding the kids.” He believes that any government involvement would be rife with corruption and bring down the entire operation. He gave the example of the AP program which

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SOCIETY

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Jesal Patel Becomes the Only Asian-Indian Woman to be Named Financial Adviser with Eagle Strategies HOUSTON: Jesal Patel has been named a financial adviser with Eagle Strategies LLC, A Registered Investment Adviser an indirect, wholly owned subsidiary of New York Life Insurance Company. As a financial adviser, Houston, TX-based Jesal provides investment advisory services ranging from separately managed portfolios of bonds to mutual fund wrap accounts to clients across the country. Jesal’s appointment with Eagle Strategies required that she be appropriately licensed, and go through thorough and rigorous training sessions. A Chartered Accountant from India, Jesal is a member of numerous professional associations like The Nautilus Group, Life Underwriting Council, and National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors. Since she joined New York Life in 2003, she has won numerous service awards and trophies for her professional excellence. Jesal, who is currently the only Asian-Indian woman in the United States with New York Life doing Asset Management and Fee-based Planning, enjoys helping people meet their financial goals. She made history earlier also when she became the first woman to achieve the prestigious Chairman’s Council at the Houston General Office of New York Life. With many years of experience, she understands the changing dynamics of the financial world and the financial challenges

most individuals face today and works diligently to research and provide the right solutions for them. Jesal, whose favorite hobbies are reading and writing, is writing a book about the outlook of the world’s economy in the upcoming 10 to 20 years and how it may change the map of the financial world that we live in today. Jesal attributes her success to motivation she derives from her kids and family. New York Life Insurance Company, a Fortune 100 company founded in 1845, is the largest mutual life insurance company in the United States* and one of the largest life insurers in the world. New York Life has the highest possible financial strength ratings from all four of the major credit rating agencies. Headquartered in New York City, New York Life’s family of companies offers life insurance, retirement income, investments and long-term care insurance. New York Life Investments** provides institutional asset management and retirement plan services. Other New York Life affiliates provide an array of securities products and services, as well as institutional and retail mutual funds. Please visit New York Life’s Web site at www.newyorklife.com for more information. *New York Life is the largest mutual life insurance company based on the Fortune 500, ranked within industries, Insurance: Life, Health (Mutual), Fortune magazine, May 4, 2009. **New York Life Investments is a service mark used by New York Life Investment Management Holdings LLC and its subsidiary, New York Life Investment Management LLC. Document Number: 00423023 CV

Former INS District Director Joins George R. Willy, P.C.

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HOUSTON: George R. Willy, P.C is pleased to announce that Thomas P. Fischer has joined our firm as a Special Advisor. Fischer is a former INS District Director, and had jurisdiction over Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. From 1988 until his retirement in 1999, Fischer headed all INS offices and activities in much of the southern United States. Fischer knows firsthand the complex issues facing employers and employees in today’s global workplace. Since retiring from the INS, he has served as an immigration consultant to national and international firms, traveling to many parts of the world on behalf of his clients. Throughout his career, Fischer has identified and resolved employment immigration issues with favorable outcomes for employers and employees alike while adhering to current federal laws and statutes and without inhibiting the productive flow of enterprise.

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Divinity and Ingenuity Guide a Program that Feeds Millions 5 food their kids get and a feeds kids in 200 schools in full stomach fosters a mind the western half of Ahmedathat can focus on learning. bad, Gujarat a city of over In its wake, AP provides 10 million. “There were so jobs and supports the lomany complaints of bad cal farmers by buying food and service from the their produce in the areas government run program in it serves and trains other the city’s eastern side that it NGOs. The AP has a taxreached the ears of the Chief exempt status in India as Minister Narendra Modi well as in the UK and the who is known for his modUS ; although it’s overseas ern style of management.,” support only provides 6 continued Shah amusedly, to 7 per cent of its annual “Impressed, Modi asked funding requirements. The AP to take over that part of rest comes from corporate the city too!” partners in India and some As its reputation has government assistance. grown, so has the reach of Dr. K. T. Shah, the Akshaya “I tell you, the politicians the AP through funding from Patra Houston Chapter head love this program,” said the many Indian corporations spoke at the appreciation outspoken Shah to titters and philanthropists who dinner. from the audience. “They have contributed the money see how this can help them to help it build kitchens and get votes.” At present, the a fleet of trucks to transport state and central governthe hot food to the schools. ment fund a 50% of each AP has steadily grown to child’s daily meal cost of feed 1.2 million school kids 12 cents; the annual cost each day through its netper child being $28. The work of 30 huge kitchens new kitchen in Baroda was across the country, all locatfunded by 3 Indian corpoed within 45 minutes of the rations to the tune of over areas they serve for each of $1 million, including funds the 240 days of the school for food for 5 years. There year. Another 300 smaller is the need to fund a new kitchens serve clusters of large kitchen for Surat . village schools. Each large “My advice for those who kitchen and area is managed want to help is to visit a by a head Swami and 3 to 4 kitchen, sit down with the other devotees. kids and eat the food,” deC.C. Dasa, a former meclared Shah. chanical engineer, devised a Swami C. C. Dasa spoke with During the question and machine that enables each the invited guests about the answer session that came kitchen to make 40,000 work done by the Akshaya at the end, some wanted to chapattis each hour. With Patra at a function last know why the Indian peoan annual budget of $25 Saturday night at the VPSS. ple didn’t support the AP million, the AP employs Photos: Jawahar Malhotra program with donations. 3,500 people, yet keeps “I was surprised that such its administrative costs down to the single few Indians know about the AP’s program,” digits and operates as an independent trust said Shah, “but I tell the swami’s they are with a Board of Trustees. Its achievements too busy to spread the word!” he chided as have earned it a $50,000 award in 2009 Dasa grinned. “You know,” continued Shah, from Microsoft in its “Leveraging modern “you really get emotionally involved with technology to improve education” initia- this project.” tive. “We are moving toward a knowledge For more information, visit www.akshaybased economy,” said Dasa, “so we need an apatra.org or call Dr. K.T. Shah at 281-772educated population.” 4139 or email at ktshahmd@yahoo.com. A Which is the best result that the AP has fundraiser gala is planned for October 17 seen. Absenteeism in schools has dropped, with Narayan Murthy, the founder of Infosys parents look forward to and appreciate the as the keynote speaker.

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STORY of Mahatma GANDHI

Gandhi’s First Experiment in Satyagraha

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In December 1902, a cable reached Gandhi from South Africa urging him to return as promised. Joseph Chamberlain, the Colonial Secretary, was arriving from London on a visit to Natal and the Transvaal and the Natal Indian Congress wanted to present their case to him. Gandhi kept his promise. He reached Natal in time to lead the Indian deputation, but the Colonial Secretary gave the deputation a cold reception. The Indians felt disheartened. From Natal, Chamberlain proceeded to the Transvaal. The Indians there also wanted Gandhi to present their grievances to him. Before the Boer war, Indians had been free to enter the Transvaal at any time, but now they had to obtain a permit from the newly created Asiatic Department. The new rule was designed to separate Indians from the whites. To get a permit was no easy matter. The officers of the Asiatic Department did their best to prevent Gandhi from entering the Transvaal but he had his way in the end. He got a permit and went to Pretoria. He was not allowed, however, to lead a deputation and present the memorandum he had drafted. Gandhi now decided to stay in the Transvaal and fight the color bar which was taking such ugly shape there. He realized that now he would not be able to leave the country, as he had hoped to. He therefore settled down and prepared to do his utmost for the cause of the colored people, particularly the Indians. He was enrolled in the Supreme Court at Johannesburg. He rented a place and established his office. He made good earnings from his practice, but his heart was in the service of the people. Meanwhile, he continued his experiments with vegetarianism. He gave up all luxuries and pleasures. His idea was to tune his physical body to his spiritual self. It was at this time that a friend, Madanjit, came to Gandhi with a proposal to start a journal called Indian Opinion. Gandhi liked the idea and in 1904 the journal was launched. Mansukhlal Naazar was the editor. Gandhi helped the journal generously, contributing money and editorial work! The journal, published every week in Gujarati and English, reflected his ideals and gave the Indian readers a liberal education. With absolute frankness Gandhi pointed out to them their failings and prejudices. Indian Opinion also gave the Europeans a cor rect picture of the difficulties faced by the Indians in South Africa. After the rains in 1904 there was a sudden outbreak of plague in one of the gold-mining areas near Jo-

hannesburg. It soon spread to the Indian quarters. Gandhi rushed to the spot and organized preventive measures. With the help of friends, he set up improvised hospitals and looked after the sick. Another thing that happened that year was that Gandhi met H. S. L. Polak, then a sub-editor of The Critic. The two soon became fast friends as their outlook on life was similar. Polak presented to Gandhi a copy of a book by John Ruskin called Unto This Last. This book on economics presented many new ideas, and it influenced Gandhi a great deal. He then hit upon the idea of starting a farm and founding a community with a true sense of brotherhood. His friends supported the project enthusiastically. About 100 acres of land was acquired at a place called Phoenix near Durban, and a farm was set up. In the beginning six families were settled there. The office of Indian Opinion was moved to Phoenix, complete with press. Members of any race could freely go and live on the farm, tilling the soil or working at the press. Gandhi, however, could stay in the Phoenix Settlement only for brief periods. His headquarters were at Johannesburg where he continued his practice as a lawyer. He knew that it would not be possible to return to India in the near future, so he decided to send for Kasturbai and the children. They soon joined him. Whenever he found time he undertook the task of educating his three sons. He also pursued the experiments with his diet. “I intend to be the ruler of my body,” he would say. “The spirit can only rule me if I am free of earthly wants.” He gave up drinking coffee and tea. Next to go was milk. Sometimes he would fast, taking only water. Kasturbai watched all this silently. She knew it was useless to argue with her husband on such matters. In 1906, the Zulu Rebellion

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broke out in Natal. It was a notax campaign. The Zulus were only asserting their rights, but the whites got panicky and declared war against the Zulus. Gandhi’s sympathies were with the Zulus, but they were fighting against the British and Gandhi believed that the British Empire ex isted for the welfare of the world. He considered it his duty to help the British. He offered to form an Indian Ambulance Corps. The authorities accepted the offer. The Indian Ambulance Corps was formed. It consisted of a squad of 24 men, and was in active service for six weeks, nursing and looking after the wounded. Gandhi realized that the whites were determined to enforce the tax on the unwilling Zulus. They wanted to put down all resistance and deny the colored people their rights in their own land. The Zulu Rebellion was finally over and Gandhi returned to Johannesburg. His presence was needed there to look after the interests of the Indians, for they were facing all kinds of oppression from the white settlers. In August 1906 an ordinance was issued by the Transvaal Government requiring all Indians men, women, and children to register themselves and obtain a personal certificate bearing name and thumb impression. This card was to be carried by all individuals at all times and had to be shown on demand. Anyone failing to produce the certificate was liable to be fined, imprisoned, or deported. The police even had orders to enter private houses and check certificates. “This is too much to bear,” Gandhi told his colleagues. “If we meekly submit, it will spell absolute ruin for us in South Africa. We must take action immediately if we are to live here.” The Indians decided not to submit to this humiliating and insulting measure. They resolved to fight it. But how? Gandhi saw here the need for passive resistance or satyagraha. He explained to the people his concept of satyagraha. First, he said, they must be prepared to observe absolute nonviolence. The authorities would take all measures to put down the agitation. They might use violence, arrest people and send them to jail, but all this must be faced without resistance “Merely disobeying the government’s laws will not be enough,” Gandhi told them. “You must have no hatred in your hearts and you must cast away all fear.” — To be continued


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The Deep Meaning of the Ratha Yatra Festival By Brajendranandana Dasa HOUSTON: In cities all over the world millions of people have become familiar with the wonderful Ratha Yatra festival of Lord Jagannath. Oriya Cultural Center and Sri Govindaji Gaudiya Matha (IPBYS) along with other major Hindu organizations will be celebrating the 3rd Ratha Yatra event in Houston in a grand manner. What originated in Jagannath Puri in India is now being observed throughout the world as a result of the global preaching of several Vaishnava acharyas.  But in India as well as in the west very few people are aware of the deep internal significance of this festival.  In his book ,”The Origin of Ratha Yatra,” His Divine Grace Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Goswami Maharaja, the founder acharya of International Pure Bhakti Yoga Society (IPBYS), has expounded most profoundly about the deep truths behind this

ple cow herd boy but rather like a King in royal dress surrounded by His queens, elephants, thousands of horses and so much opulence.  When Srimati Radharani and the gopis got to meet Krishna after such a long time, the spiritual moods they experienced are hardly capable of being described.  Radharanai said, “All your relatives from Dwaraka are here in Kurukshetra, we cannot meet in the forest like we used to.  There, there were many beautiful Kadamba trees and fragrant flowers.  We could talk alone continuously meeting and pleasing each other.  I don’t want a royal palace or wealth.  We used to play on swings and play games and when I would defeat you, all the gopis would clap and laugh.  Oh, if you would return to Vrindavana we could meet freely there once again!  We can not meet here freely in the midst of all this royalty.”  Krishna replied, “What shall I do?”  The gopis replied, “Come with us to Vrindavana.  We are feeling some happiness in meeting here but not full happiness.   In Vrindavana when we were teenage boy and girl you were so beautiful.  We mixed together freely and happily. We want you to come with us to Vrindavana to play with your gopas and gopis.  If you want to be happy forever then please come on the chariot of our hearts. We will take you where our minds and hearts reside and we will satisfy you there, not here.  Make your friends happy and Sand artist Subal Maharana gives final touches to a sand sculpture we will also be happy by of a chariot of Lord Jagannath, Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra, on dancing and singing with the eve of the Rathyatra festival in Bhubaneswar, Orissa. you in Vrindavana.” Krishna became confestival. my heart.”   This is how the gopis trolled by the pure loving sentiAfter Lord Sri Krishna ended prayed to Krishna at Kurukshetra ments of the gopis.  The chariot His pastimes in this world five after years of being separated from was there and that chariot was the thousand years ago, despite hav- their beloved.  “You should come gopi’s hearts and Krishna wanted ing tasted his sweet Vrindavana and sit in our hearts, our hearts are to seat Himself there. “You should pastimes with His eternal associ- Vrindavana.” sit on this chariot of our hearts ates, He was feeling incomplete After Krishna performed His and come to Vrindavana, we will in his heart.  As Srila Krishnadas transcendental pastimes in Vrin- never give you up, you will always Kaviraja Goswami explains in his davana five thousand years ago remain there.”  This is the deep, great epic, Chaitanya Caritamrta with his parents Yashoda and internal mood of the Ratha Yatra (translation):  “Desiring to know Nanda Baba, His cowherd friends festival: bringing Krishna back to the  glories of Srimati Radhika’s and His beloved gopis headed Vrindavana on the chariot of the Love, the qualities in Him that by Srimati Radhika, He went to gopis hearts.  By participating in only She experiences through Her Mathura and Dwaraka to perform this festival we are also asking Love, and the happiness She feels various pastimes there.  For over Krishna to kindly sit in the chariot in tasting the sweetness of His one hundred years the residents of of our hearts as well as we bring Love, Sri Krishna, endowed with Vrindavana were drowning in an Him back to Vrindavana. the sentiments and complexion of ocean of separation from Krishna, So, now you can also particiSrimati Radhika appeared from especially the gopis and Srimati pate in this wonderful, spiritually the womb of Srimati Saci Devi as Radhika.  These deep moods of surcharged festival at India House the moon appears from the ocean.”  separation are very poignantly on July 24th. The festival includes, (Adi Lila 1.5). So Krishna Himself depicted in the pages of Srimad Yajna, pulling of the Ratha (charcoming in the mood of His eternal Bhagavatam by Veda-Vyasa as iot), cultural program, games for consort and shakti appeared in well as other scriptures compiled children, food booths and much this world five hundred years ago by numerous Vaishnava acharyas.  more. On July 23rd, there will be a to taste the mellows of Love of On the occasion of a lunar Ratha Yatra fund-raising dinner at Krishna from Her position.  eclipse the residents of Vrinda- Bhojan restaurant.  Before the time of Sri Chaitanya vana as well as Lord Krishna got Mahaprabhu, the Ratha Yatha had to meet again at the Holy place of To participate or for more inforbeen taking place for thousands Kurukshetra.  At this time Krishna mation, please call Vimla didi 281of years since ancient times.  The was no longer dressed like a sim- 499-3347. king would observe it with his inner circle of people. There was only one chariot for Jagannath, Baladeva, and Subhadra together.  There was no kirtana and no special moods.  When Mahaprabhu appeared, the entire public was able to participate, moreover, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu brought all the moods of Vrindavana, His eternal spiritual abode, especially the moods of separation and meeting after separation. He introduced these moods by His dancing and singing along with His kirtana parties.  Gradually hundreds of thousands of devotees began to join from Bengal and Orissa and other places.  Mahaprabhu in the mood of Radharani enacted His Ratha Yatra pastimes in Jagannath Puri.   So what is the meaning behind the festival?  The chariot represents our hearts and we are praying to Krishna in His form as Lord Jagannath, “please come and sit in

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IACCGH Hosts Business Seminar on “Sharpening Your Strategy”

to heart so they can enhance their abilities and perform at the highest level. Jagdip Alhuwalia, Executive Director, Indo-American Chamber of Commerce, recognized and thanked Citibank, the sponsors, and then invited Kathuria, whom he described as a management guru. The attendees listened with rapt attention as Kathuria engrossed them in the topic about sharpening their business strategy. Kathuria led a discussion on the traits that make businesses successful, and asked the attendees to deliberate on how they could incorporate the same traits in their business. Kathuria engaged the attendees in an open and interactive discussion. Like his book, which is a parable, Kathuria used a stoIACCGH President Madhukar Prasad presenting ry to drive his point Kathuria with a plaque home. The story and Kathuria’s presentation style were Perspectives. Madhukar Prasad, President, simple and allowed the audience Indo-American Chamber of Com- to connect with him and his mesmerce, introduced Kathuria by sage. When Kathuria ended his sharing he was delighted with the session, the audience’s energy was business message in Kathuria’s at a high-note, wanting to receive book. A message he felt small and more wisdom from Kathuria. Alhuwalia extended the Q&A mid-sized business needs to take HOUSTON: The Indo-American Chamber of Commerce held an insightful and enlightening event on June 29, 2010 for its members, and small and mid-sized business owners. As part of its Small Business Seminar Series, sponsored by Citibank, the chamber hosted Ravi Kathuria, author of the recently published book, Coherent Strategy and Execution: An Eyeopening Parable about Transforming Leadership and Management

by Citi) focused on the needs of small and medium sized business owners The next seminar on “Seven Steps to Business Growth in Tough Economic Times” will feature another author and management guru Pradeep Anand, President, Seeta Resources LLC. The IACCGH’s Eleventh annual Gala is scheduled of Saturday August 14th 2010 at the Westin Hotel. Visit www.iaccgh.com for details on the Chamber and the Gala.

session to allow the attendees to get their questions answered, and expressed his delight with the session. Alhuwalia extended an invitation to Kathuria to conduct in the coming months more in-depth sessions with chamber members so they may benefit from his knowledge and experience. The seminar is part of a IACCGH member BN Patel and Presi- series of “thought leaderdent Madu Prasad present plaque to ship” seminars sponsored sponsor Citi’s Don Burback

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IA News © 2010 A.R.R

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SOCIETY

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Youth at Swami Ramdev Dallas Yoga Camp

“There are no words to describe the joy and happiness in the eyes of the youth/kids who attended the Swami Ramdev ji’s youth camp especially the excitement they showed when Swami ji did the hand stand. The youth camp was very motivational for kids to learn the yog from the best of the best and will leave a lasting impression and memory which will go long way in their lives. It was very satisfying for me to see 450 kids show up to attend the camp when we were only expecting about 250 kids,” Vijay Bhalla, Youth Camp Co-ordinator

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Actor Anupam Kher to Serve as Pratham Goodwill Ambassador The Pratham Education Foundation today appointed eminent actor and living legend of Bollywood, Mr. Anupam Kher, as their Goodwill Ambassador. “It is a pleasure to welcome Anupam Kher as Pratham Goodwill Ambassador,” said Madhav Chavan, CEO Pratham Education Foundation. “I hope he can help spotlight the key issues concerning education and help Pratham achieve its mission of “every child in school

and learning well.” One of the greatest actors of contemporary cinema and recipient of the Padma Shri Award, Anupam’s critical and commercial success runs over 100 plays and almost 400 films. While Anupam’s accomplishments as an actor are well known, it is his determination to use his eminence to help India’s children go to school and learn well, that has led to his appointment as a Pratham Goodwill Ambas-

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, JUly 16 , 2010• ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM

sador. Anupam will also be hosting Pratham’s informative and educational TV program called “Angrezi OK Please.” “I have always been drawn to the cause of children’s education which is why I have founded a School of Life Program. I am certain a lot of synergy will be unleashed in being appointed Goodwill Ambassador for Pratham and in leveraging my media image. By becoming Pratham’s public face, I hope to augment in its fund raising, capacity enhancement and other initiatives dedicated to the cause of children’s education,” said Anupam Kher. As Goodwill Ambassador, Anupam will undertake a trip to the USA in September 2010 to meet with and encourage supporters of the organization in association with Pratham. He will be making stops in New York, New Jersey, Boston, Dallas, Washington DC, North Carolina, Houston and Chicago. Veteran actor Waheeda Rahman has been a Pratham Goodwill Ambassador for several years now, and has supported the NGO by helping to raise awareness about the issues of education and learning.


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Prince of a Prince The mention of an Indian prince brings to mind a profligate playboy with loose morals and an open wallet, uncaring about his heritage. But Babaji Rajah Bhonsle, the decendant of Shahaji, the father of Shivaji and the current ruler of Thanjavur, presents a contrary profile. Thanjavur is a small territory in the Cauvery River delta within the current state of Tamil Nadu. In his late 40s, the Rajah is an engineer by profession and has taken a course in conservation. He lives in an 80-acre palace in the Thanjavur with his wife and three children. Aware of his rich heritage, the Rajah is a trustee of 88 ancient temples in the region and has opened up the Saraswati Bhandar, a library containing thousands of books and ancient manuscripts, to academic scholars. He continues the tradition of the Thanjavur kings in encouraging the fine arts and folk traditions. Rajah Bhonsle was in Houston to inaugurate a conference last Saturday: “Art and Literature at the Thanjavur Maratha Court: A Confluence of Cultures 1674-1855” organized by India Performing Arts - Samskriti, in association with the Museum of Fine Arts of Houston. Samskriti’s small group of volunteers -- Executive Director Vatsa Kumar, Artistic Director Rathna Kumar and President Thara Narsimhan, MFAH Board Member Prabha Bala and others -- deserve immense credit for giving us the opportunity to attend such an illuminating set of academic lectures and visit with Rajah Bhonsle. This was Samskriti’s fourth annual international conference and Indo-American News is pleased to thank them and give them encouragement. Pramod Kulkarni

A Break for the Games Sometimes, you just need to stop being negative to get things going. The ongoing spadework in New Delhi to complete preparations for the Commonwealth Games before it’s on us in October is a case in point. Pessimists are coming out of the cement work casting doubts about whether things will be ready in time. Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, in such circumstances, can’t really be faulted for asking her ministers to refrain from discussing the progress of Commonwealth Games projects with the ‘please let’s have some horrible soundbites’ media. Ms Dikshit has instead told these ministers to directly bring these ‘worries’ to her notice so that they can be addressed, instead of being turned into media fodder. Hindustan Times

e d ito r i a l

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Eyes of Past, Present and Future By Sudheendra Kulkarni This being the 60th year of our Republic, I have been re-reading the Constituent Assembly Debates—that priceless collection of the ideas, reflections and meditations of many of the greatest Indians who not only fought for our nation’s freedom but also shaped its post-Independence destiny by producing a republican Constitution that has stood the test time. Of course, the tallest among them, Mahatma Gandhi, was absent in the Assembly, he not being its member. Nevertheless, as Jawaharlal Nehru acknowledged in one of the sessions, “the Father of our Nation has been the architect of this Assembly and all that has gone before it and possibly of much that will follow...(Although he is absent) his spirit hovers over this place and blesses our undertaking.” ReadingthetwovolumesofMunshi Papers: Indian Constitutional Documents, published by the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan (whose founder Dr KM Munshi was a leading member of the Constituent Assembly) is an invaluable education about what is undoubtedly the most decisive period in modern Indian history. One is simply overwhelmed by the sheer quality and intensity of the debates, and also the enormous erudition of most of the participants—besides Nehru and Munshi, Dr Rajendra Prasad, who presided over the Assembly, Vallabhbhai Patel, Maulana Azad, Dr BR Ambedkar, Dr S Radhakrishnan, Dr Syama Prasad Mookerjee, Sarojini Naidu and others. One is also struck by how a lot of what they debated over six decades ago sounds relevant even today. Above all, one is pained by the sharp contrast in the standards of debate then and now. A crash course in the Constituent Assembly Debates must be made compulsory for all our MPs and MLAs. The star performer in the Constituent Assembly was not Dr Ambed-

kar —notwithstanding the latter-day myth created to make people believe that he was the sole architect of the Indian Constitution—but Nehru himself. Every time he spoke in the Assembly, his words carried the gravitas and stamp of authority of the future leader of the nation. Nowhere is it more evident than in the all-important Resolution on the Aims and Objects of the Constitution, which he moved on 13th December 1946. He spoke twice on the subject, at great length on both occasions, first when he moved the resolution and later when it was adopted after six weeks of in-depth deliberations. Even by the Nehruvian standards of oratory, the two speeches excel in idealism laced with lyricism. Indeed, they prefigure the incomparable ‘Tryst With Destiny’ oration he would make on the midnight of freedom eight months later. “We, who have this tremendous task of Constitution-making”, he says, “have to think of the tremendous task of the present and the greater prospect of the future and not get lost in seeking small gains for this group or that.” (emphasis added) Then, using an expression that belongs more to the language of mysticism than of rationality, he adds, “The eyes of our entire past—the 5,000 years of India’s history—are upon us. Our past is witness to what we are doing here and though the future is still unborn, the future too somehow looks at us.” Nehru reminds the Constituent Assembly that, as India stood at the end of an era and embarked upon a new

IndoAmerican News Founder: 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 Reporter: Jacob David Production Manager: Hussain Mandviwala correspondents Chicago: Nand Kapoor ®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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age, “our forbears and future generations are watching this undertaking of Constitution-making and possibly blessing it, if we moved aright.” Eyes of the past? And eyes of the future? What strange concepts are these? Do they make sense to our parliamentarians and legislators, our ministers and bureaucrats, our political leaders, and to all the rest of us? Do we all feel, as Nehru felt at the time of Constitution-making, that the generations before us and the generations after us are watching our actions today? No. Most of us choose to live only for the present, getting lost in seeking “small gains” for ourselves, unaware of and also unconcerned about our responsibility as “trustees of the future” and as “inheritors of a great past”. Nehru, as our first prime minister, certainly committed several mistakes. India continues to pay a heavy price of those mistakes even today. However, I feel that we often judge him too harshly. Nehru had a sense of history, and a deep pride in India’s past that is overlooked by both his uncritical admirers, who only view him as a modernist, and his critics, who believe that he was too westernised. What is especially instructive for us today is the powerful thought that he passionately articulated in the Constituent Assembly—the actions of every generation are watched by the “eyes of the past” as well as the “eyes of the future”. This sublime and sobering thought is rooted in an understanding of human life as an unbroken continuity. Our ancestors continue to live in us, just as we will continue to remain alive in the generations yet to come. This realisation begets a sense of responsibility: What we do with our life today will be judged by whether it is worthy of the best dreams of the past and also the best aspirations of the future. TOI


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New Book Details Artistic Laser Creations of Manic Sorcar DENVER: Manick Sorcar, who has made a name for himself in North America as a laser and animation artist, is being honored with the publication of a book on his art. The new book comes very shortly after another on his life and work by an Indian American author. In the past few months, the “World of Manick Sorcar - where art becomes magic” has won critical acclaim, with many here praising the book as a long awaited recognition of Sorcar’s life and art. Wellington Webb, a former mayor of Denver, Colorado, where Sorcar resides, noted his “unparalled contribution to the skyline of Denver”. Colorado governor Bill Ritter added, “The world of Manick Sorcar is a compelling one of versatility and triumph and represents the true entrepreneurial spirit of the West.” “In the world of laser displays, there are many producers and few artists,” said Patrick Murphy of the International Laser Display Association, adding, “He blends the technical skill to wrangle insubstantial light photons, and the artistic skill to create sublime drawings.” Sorcar combines his passion for animation with his day job as an electrical engineer. His company has illuminated the Denver international airport, fitness centres in Japan and a palace in Saudi Arabia. According to the book’s author Roma Sur, Sorcar has been able to seamlessly merge three different fields - science, fantasy and art “because of his sharp, analytical mind that understands the science behind

Cover of a newly released book on laser creator Manick Sorcar.

One of Manick Sorcar’s laser creations on the theme of world peace.

every piece of art and his childlike imagination that knows no boundaries. Combine that with the magic in his genes, and that is the secret of his mind-boggling creations.” “He is a rare personality whose left brain works hand in hand with the right brain - one does not dominate

the other. While assisting his late father, (the legendary magician P.C. Sorcar) he realised his flair and interest in lighting engineering. He can create art with a chicken wire, rocks, spices, newspapers -you name it,” Sur said in an interview. Readers and critics here appear to have been bowled over by the sheer range of Sorcar’s creations as evidenced in the book - from newsclip collages to acrylic on tiles and brick slices. Sur, who has scripted shows for cable channels like Food Network and Home and Garden, said she was first introduced to Sorcar when she interviewed him for a master’s degree project at the University of Denver. “The seed of this book was planted at that time. Since Sorcar’s work is so visual, it made most sense to showcase his work in a pictorial coffee table format,” she said. The book has been a revelation to even those people who have known Sorcar for a long time. But writing the book has been a revelation to the author too who said she wondered “how could one man be a full time lighting engineer, a gifted artist, an award winning laserist, a world class animator and a cartoonist at the same time?” “I had heard of great Renaissance men like Da Vinci. But I had never met someone who so brilliantly combined outsize talents for science and art,” she said. Having completed the book, Sur said she was still left with an unanswered question - “When does he ever sleep?”

Time Magazine Apologises to Indian-Americans for Racial Article WASHINGTON: ‘Time’ magazine has apologised to Indian-Americans following the publication of a column by journalist Joel Stein which offended and outraged the large community, especially those in New Jersey. “We sincerely regret that any of our readers were upset by Joel Stein’s recent humor column ‘My Own Private India.’ It was in no way intended to cause offence,” the Time magazine said after large number of Indian-Americans demanded an apology from the magazine and the columnist. “I truly feel stomach-sick that I hurt so many people,” responded Stein, who in his column ‘My Own Private India’ gave his own impression of how his home town of Edison in New Jersey has changed over the years with the desi influx. Nearly one in every five resident of this New Jersey city are Indian Americans; thus making it one of the few such cities in the United States. “For a while, we assumed all Indians were geniuses. Then, in the 1980s, the doctors and engineers brought over their merchant cousins, and we were no longer so sure about the genius thing. In the 1990s, the not-as-brilliant merchants brought their even-less-bright cousins, and we started to understand why India is so damn poor,” Stein wrote in the issue dated July 5. The article outraged many Indian-Americans. “...I always thought it was hilarious when I’d get the crap kicked out of me by kids like Stein who would yell ‘go back to India, dothead!’ I was always ROTFLMAO when people would assume that I wasn’t American. He really captured the brilliant humour in that one too!” wrote Kal Penn, the IndianAmerican actor. Indian-Americans also launched an online petition demanding Time and CNN to remove the article from their online edition. Regretting that his article hurt the feelings of so many Indian Americans, Stein wrote: “I was trying to explain how, as someone who believes that immigration has enriched American life and my hometown in particular, I was shocked that I could feel a tiny bit uncomfortable with my changing town when I went to visit it. If we could understand that reaction, we’d be better equipped to debate people on the other side of the immigration issue.”

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Sculptor Bharti Kher’s Crouching Elephant Sculpture Fetches £900,000 in London LONDON: A life-sized elephant in a crouched position by UK-born Indian sculptor Bharti Kher fetched over £900,000 at an auction by Sotheby’s in London Monday evening. “The Skin Speaks a Language not its Own” is one of the most talked-about works by Kher, said the auction house which expected it to fetch between £700,000 and a million pounds. It ultimately went for £993,250, just short of the high end target, at the Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Evening Auction. It took Kher 10 months to create. Zara Porter-Hill, director and head of Sotheby’s Indian Art Department, said: “Despite our familiarity with elephants, nothing prepares the viewer for the emotional experience of seeing Kher’s elephant, huge and incongruous in the gallery space. With her head resting on her front foot, she is brought down to our level and her glassy black eye entreats a communion and proximity rarely encountered in the wild.” In New Delhi’s satellite city of Gurgaon, artist Bharti Kher’s studio is split between two adjacent three-storey residences. One houses her office, where she executes her finer work, while the other is a workshop where fibreglass and metals are blown and cast. Her office is on the top floor. A discarded branch of The Waq Tree (2009), which was exhibited at Art Basel last year, lies on the ground floor. It is a tree of life that bears pale-coloured gargoyle heads instead of fruits. Going up the stairway, we see sari-clad women diligently pasting bindis—the artist’s leitmotif—on mirrors and coloured boards. The cheerful women at work evoke a village welfare scheme. But then there are rooms stacked high with papers, packing, cardboard models. A chest of drawers takes up an entire wall on the first-floor landing, each with consignments of bindis in all imaginable colours and sizes. As we look up to see Kher waiting to receive us at the door of her office, we know this is no cottage industry. Dressed down in cropped linen pants and loafers, she still stands tall. In the Indian art world, she is the woman of the moment: A couple of weeks ago, her life-sized sculpture, The Skin Speaks a Language Not

its Own (2006) created auction history in a sale by Sotheby’s London. The $1,493,947 (around Rs7 crore) it fetched is a record price for a work by any female contemporary Indian artist at auction. It surpasses the auction record for her husband Subodh Gupta, who is beyond dispute India’s best known contemporary artist. With this, Kher becomes the most expensive Indian contemporary artist at auction ever, after the London-based Raqib Shaw. The sculpture is aweinspiring in its scale and detailing. It portrays a female Indian elephant brought to her knees in a seemingly untenable position. Starting from the “Skin Speaks” by Bharti Kher was sold at a centre of her forehead, price of £900,000 at Sotheby’s auction last every fold of her skin Monday. has been meticulously identities are a common thread in contoured with a whirling array of sperm-shaped bindis. As her work. Born and brought up in the UK, Kher settles down on a couch, she is aware that she has brought two arche- Kher has lived and worked in India typal cliches of India—the elephant since 1993. She fell in love with and the bindi—together to create a Gupta while on a post-college trip to work that transcends India and places visit her extended family in 1992. She had only been to India once before her firmly on the global art radar. Trained as a painter at Newcastle that. They married and Kher, now Polytechnic in the UK, Kher has ex- 41, has two children, aged 7 and 11. tended her practice to include collage, Being married to an artist means that sculpture, photography, video and as- there are no off-topics at home. Art semblage. Her sensibility prompted and art markets are dinner-table talk. prestigious galleries such as Nature And though it is too early to tell, Kher Morte in New Delhi, Hauser & Wirth thinks that her seven-year-old daughin London, Emmanuel Perrotin in ter Lola has inherited the art gene. Kher has often suffered from too Paris and Jack Shainman in New biographical a reading of her work. York, to show her work. For Kher, the bindi is an oxy- Several critics have interpreted her moron—condensing male sexuality part beast-part woman figures as and female adornment; forging links reflecting her own identity crises. between the real and spiritual worlds Stirring sugar into cups of Earl Grey in accordance with Hindu mythol- tea, she suggests that is a lazy readogy. It is emblematic of her work in ing. “It’s been almost 20 years that I general, which is forever addressing moved. That’s half of my life really. paradoxes. Her human sculptures So when people ask me if I feel at are beautiful, as sensual as Rodin’s. home, if I feel displaced, I don’t know But they are also macabre. One view what they want me to say,” she says of Arione (2004), for instance, is in a British accent watered down over a somewhat appealing Amazonian the years. Her status as a reverse emigré acwoman. But from another angle she looks half-beast, with a hoof in place centuates her sense of wonderment. of a leg. Hybrids and contrasting She confesses that she continues

Shiv Sagar

to be amazed by Indian regional television and the sheer variety of its programming. She’d discovered the bindi in 1996, when she’d seen a woman wearing a sperm-shaped one. After several visits to Old Delhi’s wholesale market, Sadar Bazaar, she found her bindi supplier. Her largescale works have now made her the supplier’s biggest client. But she has never worn one. Kher is not necessarily a feminist but female identity is a strong part of her work. So when I ask her if the part about her being India’s highest selling “female” contemporary artist irritates her, she nods, putting down her cup of tea. “I’m not irritated. I’m a woman and that doesn’t irritate me. The truth is that there are fewer successful women artists who’ve reached this stage financially,” she says. Kher exudes a sense of self-awareness about where she has reached today, and how hard she has worked for it. A desk stacked with files that spill over, a phone that always rings, and administrative duties befitting a small manufacturing unit bear witness to it. Two years ago, she used

to do two-three projects a year. The number now stands at 15-20. She put a lot of work “out there”, as she says, between 2003 and 2006. Things started to click, people started to notice her bindis. Most importantly, Hauser & Wirth, arguably among the best five galleries in the world, signed her on in 2008. Kher is now working towards an upcoming solo in Bangalore’s GallerySke, another solo in Paris’ Pompidou Centre, and a couple of shows in the US. Part of Kher’s international appeal is her highly developed sense of narrative. Two years after Arione, she made Arione’s Sister: a pale green nude figure, but again with one hoof. TheWaq Tree, too, is a follow-on from her Solarium Series. More recently, she has appropriated Tibetan singing bowls, antique globes collected from around the world and European vintage mirrors to string tales. Language is part of her artwork. Like the title The Skin Speaks… prompts the viewer to look beyond the elephant’s form, to ponder her skin’s texture. Bharti Kher is, more than anything, a storyteller artist.

Sangeet Radio Launches Weekend Radio Program on KLVL 1480AM

HOUSTON: Rajput Media Services made history once again in Houston on July 3 by expanding its number one Desi Hit Music Station, Sangeet Radio, to include seven days a week radio broadcasting. This recent expansion makes Sangeet Radio the largest South Asian radio network in Houston. Sangeet Radio is leading the way in multicultural radio broadcasting with its offering of 24 hours a day radio programming Monday through Friday on KBRZ 1460AM, and now featuring its weekend show Saturday and Sunday on its sister station. Sangeet Radio’s weekend radio broadcast is heard on KLVL 1480AM, Saturday and Sunday during the prime weekend hours of 12-5 pm. KLVL 1480AM offers the strongest South Asian radio frequency on the weekends. In terms of coverage, KLVL has enabled Sangeet Radio to reach out to the entire Houston metropolitan area and surrounding vicinities. The weekend show continues to attract a diverse group of South Asian listeners who speak many different languages, including Hindi, Urdu, Punjabi, Gujarati, Tamil, Telugu, Marathi, Bengali and many more. Avid listeners around the world can also tune into Sangeet Radio’s weekend variety show at klvl1480.com. “Here at Sangeet Radio, we felt the need to give our listeners in Houston and around the world the same level of quality programming on the weekends as we do during the weekdays,” said founder and CEO of Rajput Media Services and Sangeet Radio, Saeed Gaddi. “We are able to expand on the weekends because of our listeners and their support. We congratulate Houston and its listeners for Sangeet Radio’s weekend radio expansion.” Sangeet Radio reaches out to over 300,000 South Asians residing in the greater Houston area. In addition to the best of Bollywood and beyond, listeners enjoy interactive shows on Sangeet Radio, including local, national, and global news, comedy time, interactive Q&A forums, distinguished guests, intellectual quizzes complimented with gifts, and much more.

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Indo American News • Friday, July 16 , 2010

Family Accuses Police of Excessive Force Tupil Narasiman Elected as the President of Tax Executive Institute

HOUSTON: Tupil V Narasiman has been elected as the President of the Houston chapter of the Tax Executive Institute (“TEI”) for the 2010-2011 term. TEI is the preeminent professional organization of in-house Tax Professionals. TEI members are business executives who are responsible for taxation matters on an administrative or policymaking level, or whose work is otherwise primarily concerned with the problems of business taxation. TEI has nearly  7,000 members, aligned in 54 separate chapters, and representing over 3,200 leading businesses in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia. Tupil, as the president of the local chapter, is responsible for organizing tax seminars in Houston and in that capacity would like to provide speaking opportunities for Indo American tax professionals working in leading national law firms. He is also the Vice-Chair of the IRS Administrative Affairs Committee at the national level that meets with top IRS officials to discuss new federal tax legislation. Tupil began his career as a Chemical Engineer and has been with ExxonMobil for the last thirty years. Tupil and his wife Ranjana are very actively involved with many Indian community organizations in Houston and have three children Tara, Veynu and Vijay. Tupil is currently Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Sri Meenakshi Temple Society and he has also been on the board of Bharathi Kali Manram. Tupil can be contacted atTupil.V.Narasiman@Exxonmobil.com

By Sonia Azad HEDWIG VILLAGE, Tx (KTRK): The chief of police for Hedwig Village is apologizing to a family for what happened to them at the hands of his officers, but the family says it’ll take more than an apology to make up for the incident. Umar and Aamir Ibrahim are normal teenage boys who had a rather unusual encounter with police. “He flung open the car door and said

Umar and Aamir Ibrahim with their mother

get the hell out of the car, pushed me onto the ground,” Umar Ibrahim said. The boys were heading out of town on a cruise; their grandmother was meeting their mother at a shopping center off I-10 to drop them off. As they transferred bags into their mother’s car, a nearby police spotter and other undercover officers carrying out a sting operation saw what they thought was a pair of car burglars. “It’s a common tactic for car burglars to back into a parking spot, sit for a few minutes, get out and hit a car really close to them, then get in the car and leave,” Hedwig Police Chief Dave Barber said. But when the boys did leave with their mother, their car was boxed in at a red light by Hedwig police. They

boys say they were pulled from the car, forced onto the ground with guns to the back of their heads. “I was on the ground, and I’ve never had a gun drawn on me, and I was really scared,” Umar Ibrahim said. “Then I saw my mom, and she was distraught too.” Barber says the officers thought they were dealing with criminals and had to act accordingly. “You never know what you have,” Barber said. “Look at the number of officers who walk up to someone they stopped for a red light or an inspection sticker, and they’re shot and left on the side of the road.” Chief Barber says once the officers realized the boys weren’t thieves, they quickly apologized. But the boys’ father, Munir Ibrahim, thinks the officers used excessive force. “Absolutely,” he said. The apology is not good enough for him. “I would like to see this police department review their policies,” he said. “This could result in loss of life, and I think that they need to take a look at that.” Or for the teens who were mistakenly treated like criminals. “I’ve lost confidence in our police forces here in the Villages,” Aamir Ibrahim said. The family says they plan to launch a formal complaint against the police department. Meanwhile, the police chief told me they are opening their own internal investigation.

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Opportunities to Enrich your Children’s Summer Experience

By Nandita Naidu HOUSTON: There are some wonderful enrichment opportunities available locally, especially during the Summer Holidays, which will give us a very good idea about the inclination, aptitude and interest our children have towards a particular activity. Public Library: All public libraries are completely free and have excellent programs designed for specific age groups. One can request for books, movies, CDs and DVDs at no extra charge. The First Colony Branch, located at 2121 Austin Parkway, Sugarland, (phone 281 2382813) carries a wonderful selection of movies and books in Hindi. Books in Hindi are available for children too. The library has a fantastic free program called “Mango Languages.” Our five-year old daughter, Shivani, has been learning Spanish and loves it. In addition we regularly borrow learn Spanish DVDs and music CDs.

In Memorium

Sriram Kannan

Sriram Kannan with his Lifetime Achievement Taped Ball Cricket award.

CHENNAI: Sriram Kannan passed away on Thursday, July 8. He lived in Houston for several years while working for JP Morgan Chase. Sriram had been fighting a long battle with brain cancer, first diagnosed in October 2005, and after successful surgery in late 2005 and a period of respite, the cancer reappeared recently. Sriram moved from Houston to India in 2008 to be closer to his family. He is survived by his wife and a son and a daughter. Sriram was an excellent opening batsman in the Houston Taped Ball Cricket League from 2003-2005. In addition to being a superb cricketer, Sriram was the ultimate family man and a good friend.

We are on a learning Spanish trip. It’s a lot of fun. Ever felt that your computer skills need to be enhanced, well you need to look no further than the library. Quilting is a wonderful art that anyone who enjoys sewing can appreciate, there is a group of quilters who meet at another library regularly, they spend an hour talking about quilting, sources, tips and tricks, plenty of help is available and members are only too willing to share their art and knowledge. The City of Houston Parks and Recreation Department is a resource that has no parallel! I am going to pique your interest with some juicy bits of concrete information taken from the HPARD website HYPERLINK “http://www.houstonparks.org” www.houstonparks. org. The website is an eye opener and one needs to spend a considerable amount of time to learn and decide where one wants to focus. The HPARD, in partnership with the American Red Cross, conducts Learn to Swim Classes for both children and adults during the summer season. The cost is $25 per session. Yes you read correctly, the cost is $25 per session. Registration is still open and you must register to ensure your spot. The sessions coming up are June 29th to July 9th, July 13th to July 23rd, July 27th to August 6th. Call (832)-395-7129 for registrations Learn tennis for free all year round: The Youth Tennis Program is a FREE program offered at a variety of public parks through out the year by the HPARD in partnership with the Houston Tennis Association, Inc-NTJL. The program is designed to provide children with the fundamentals of the game of tennis and educational components that develop life skills. FREE Tennis classes for ages 4 to 18 are offered at 35 parks throughout the Houston area. Morning and afternoon classes are available depending on the site. Equipment is available for use free during class and pre registration is not necessary. New session begins is from July 5th through July 29th. Phone no. for information about the tennis class is (713) 803-1112 Sugar Land Town Square is a happening place on weekends for the entire family. The City organizes excellent entertainment every Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings. It is one of the few places where families with children can relax while the kids have a blast. The website to view upcoming events is HYPERLINK “http://www.sugarlandtownsquare. com” www.sugarlandtownsquare. com The Houston Zoo is a truly entertaining spot for kids and adults alike. With their fantastic collection ofwildlife that ranges from Cotton-top Tamarins and Meerkats, to exotic African fauna like the Okapi and Bongo. The popular children’s zoo includes a beautiful carousal and a petting area and is a great spot for birthday parties. There are several refreshment options available throughout. Besides, you can always carry a big picnic hamper from home and take advantage of several spots under the green canopy. The new train-ride around Hermann

Park connects the Museum of Natural Science, Theatre-Under-the-Stars and the Zoo. Visitors may have to wait up to 30 minutes to board the train or to get on a paddle-boat on most weekends. Boating is a lot of fun. It’s a relaxing, pleasant, and enjoyable activity for everyone. Forbidden Gardens: The Forbidden Gardens is located in Katy, where visitors are transported back in time to experience the age of China’s powerful emperors through significant historic, military, and cultural displays in the Museum. The most famous exhibits include an intricate, scaled model of Forbidden City of China, and the emperor’s terracotta army. Visitors are advised to check the website for schedule information. No trip to the Katy area is complete without a stop at the Katy Mills mall. Brazos Bend State Park - Summer Youth Programs: Eco-Explorers adds to its summer programming with Eco-Explorers Tadpoles tailored for children ages 2-6 years. Eco-Explorers Tadpoles meets every other Tuesday through August 3, from 9:30 a.m.-11:00 a.m. Eco-Explorers for children ages 7-12 meets each Thursday through August 5. Both programs include exploration of a specific topic with indoor and outdoor activities including games, crafts, songs, and snacks. For details of each session, registration information, and other park information visit HYPERLINK “http://www. brazosbend.org” www.brazosbend. org or call 979-553-5101 (source:

Fort Bend Lifestyles & Homes, July 2010) Sam Houston Boat Tour: The port of Houston authority’s public tour takes visitors on a spectacular tour of one of the busiest ports in the world. Sightseers can enjoy passing views of international cargo vessels and operating at the ports Turning Basin Terminal, from air conditioned lounge seating, or standing room on the boats rear deck. While the tour is free, reservations are required in advance. Register online anytime. The Children’s Museum of Houston has been rated as one of the top children’s museums in the country. The museum showcases activities for children of all ages. The museum is located at 1500 Binz in the museum district. Admission is $5 per person and $4 for seniors 65 and older. Children under two and museum members are admitted free of charge. Every Thursday between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m., admission is free to the public, courtesy of the Wortham Foundation. The Houston Downtown Aquarium is an interesting spot. It features amusement rides, restaurants and a very large aquarium. Sea creatures of every shape and size are on view at the downtown aquarium. The sunken temple exhibit reveals the wonders of ancient Mayan culture and the under water world. While a journey on the shark voyage gives you an intimate view of the ocean’s most famous predators. A great place for family fun, the aquarium also features out-

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door attractions such as the 100-foot Diving Bell Ferris wheel and the Dancing Fountains. Blue Bell Creameries offers factory tours at $3 per person. Remember Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory and the fascination it held for kids? Well, the Blue Bell factory has its own share of long and winding pipes, giant tubs of milk and cream, busy workmen, and best of all, every visitor is treated to a cup of their favourite flavour at the end. Additional scoops are just a buck!! I’m convinced that local residents in Brenham just take the tour for the ice cream at the end. However, tours of the plant are only on weekdays. Visitors are accommodated on a first-come, first-served basis. The tour takes 45 minutes. During a holiday, it is a wiser decision to call and check and make a reservation. Kemah Boardwalk: A special attraction is Kemah on the Boardwalk. Kemah is on the southeast side of Houston, near Clear Lake. There are rides, restaurants, fountains for the kids to run around in. (I recommend that you carry a complete change of clothes for the kids with you, don’t leave them in the car). Attractions include the “Boardwalk Beast” and a speed boat ride that is full of thrills. Bands play at night and there are special activities for just about everybody.

Nandita Naidu is an avid collector of Antique Tanjore Paintings and Jewelry & can be contacted at 832-363-7986 or via email at nanditanaidu@hotmail.com


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Swami Ramdev Motivates Youth Audience

By Ambika Khanna DALLAS: It was another day of yoga at the Market hall- but this time instead of tranquil echoes of yoga instruction, the entire hall was filled with the sound of childrens’ laughter. From July 2nd to July 5th, Dallas was privileged to host Swami Ramdev’s camp at Market Hall in the Dallas Market Center. This was Swami Ramdev’s first visit to Dallas. On July 3rd, a special youth session was conducted. Children of all ages were invited to participate free of charge. While the adult classes were suitably somber with Swami Ramdev demonstrating the breathing exercises and leading the often times full-to-capacity classes in the healthful postures, or asanas, peppered with songs and commentary interludes; a hallmark of the youth camp on the other hand was exuberance and liveliness. Swami Ramdev was in his element amidst the youth. Glowing with youthful vitality, his hypnotic voice meted out wisdom intended to guide the young. It was Rachit Mohan’s first dose of yoga. The St. Mark’s student exclaimed that “as a person who has never done yoga before, I found the yoga camp surprisingly helpful and beneficial, it gave an everyday approach to yoga that even I could relate to”. Since the entire focus of this session was youth, Swami Ramdev was able to customize his teachings to this age group. In fact, the parents were seated in the back so that the

From Left: youth camp volunteer Ambika Khanna with Yoga teacher Krupa Thakkar

Youth doing yoga at Dallas camp

focus was the youth. The event was a success and the turnout was over 450 children. Swami Ramdev makes it a point to conduct a free session for youth at every single camp he conducts around the world. Children of all ages were invited for this special event. College student Chitra Agarwal exclaimed, “I really enjoyed it because Swamiji was very energetic which helped me understand his teachings. I have done yoga before, however this particular camp inspired me to implement the exercises into my daily life” Swami Ramdev discussed many topics of interest to children. The topics included: how to increase your height, stop wetting the bed, grow wiser without growing white hair, and never having to use makeup to

Uma Bhalla National Teacher coordinator ,Canada at the Dallas Ramdevji camp Photos: Vijay Pallod and Shivam Khanna

fix your skin. The children were enthralled by the facts Swami Ramdev gave. They were energized by his enthusiasm and promised to practice the given exercises. Swamiji also gave the children various lessons to apply to everyday life. One example was when he told children- “obey your parents, never do anything to hurt them, always treat them with love and respect.” Dr. Janak Khanna, one of the volunteers for the camp, was thoroughly impressed by the high level of participation. As a grandmother, Dr Khanna commented on the importance of educating children and said “Children are the future of nation. Childhood is the period when they can mold their body to any side. If they do physical/ breathing exercise and yog asanas in their childhood, certainly they will become healthy and disease free. Healthy children become healthy youth. And these healthy youth will in turn become healthy adults and lead the next generations.” At one point during a stretch that helps increase height, Swami Ramdev was walking around the stage while doing a headstand. The gasps and claps from the children showed how delighted they were to see this and tried to imitate. 7 year old, Devang Thakkar was able to sit on the stage side by side with Swami Ramdev and learn yoga techniques. He exclaimed “I enjoyed doing yoga on the stage! WOO HOO! And learned lots of poses, I had fun.” There were many young children such as Devang that were as animated about the camp. Swami Ramdev was able to capture every child’s attention through his impressive flexibility. He

Swamiji with Bhutanese refugees children at Dallas camp

inspired them to vigorously stretch and bend their bodies and to try the seemingly impossible postures. The exercise routines were much more rigorous than those taught to the adult classes. Swami Ramdev is internationally recognized for his work in pranayama (breathing practice) as well as his study of Vedas. His DVDs and coverage through Aastha Television provide a medium for millions to follow him globally. He taught the children these breathing exercises and discussed the importance of them. He inspired them to stretch daily and gave ways to do postures that seemed impossible at first. Proving to be an effective teacher, Swami Ramdev would recap every exercise and have the children recite what they had learned. Akul Arora, a student at Clark High School also described his positive time at the Youth Camp. He said, “It was a good experience to have Swamiji show us the different types

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, JUly 16 , 2010 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM

of yoga, I never knew how complex it was” Over the session, Swami Ramdev covered breathing exercises, different postures, stretching exercises and yogic jogging. One of the main highlights of the event was the Geeta chanting presented by 25 Bhutanese children. They were presented on stage and had an opportunity to impress Swami Ramdev with their performance. Swami Ramdev was able to impact both adults and children alike by spreading the knowledge of yoga and Vedas. The four-day camp was truly a gift to the Dallas Community. Vijay Bhalla, the organizer of the youth camp stated, “we are very pleased with the event, the children have truly been blessed to have this opportunity. All yoga classes under the banner of Swami Ramdevji are held at no cost. For more information, visit www. pyptusa.org or email pypdfw@ gmail.com.


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Indo American News • Friday, July 16 , 2010

Dileep Rao Co-stars in “Inception”

Rising Hollywood Star Joins Leonardo DiCaprio and Ken Watanabe for Christopher Nolan’s New Sci-Fi Action Epic Opening This Friday, July 16 NEW YORK: South Asian American actor Dileep Rao co-stars in Inception, director Christopher Nolan’s highly anticipated sci-fi action film, which will be released in theaters across the United States this Friday, July 16. Rao joins an A-list ensemble cast with includes nominated and Academy Award-winning actors including Leonardo DiCaprio, Ken Watanabe, Ellen Page and Michael Caine. The plot of Inception surrounds a team of specialists hired to plant a dream into a person’s subconscious. In the movie, Rao plays “Yusef,” an “avantgarde pharmacologist” essential to the team of dream stealers. “The role of the chemist was particularly tough because you don’t want him to seem like some kind of drug dealer. He’s absolutely not,” says co-producer Jordan Goldberg. “He’s someone who is committed to the art of dream sharing and making it work in ways it hasn’t before. We needed Yusuf to be funny and interesting and obviously smart, and Dileep is all of those things.” Rao was born in Los Angeles, but his parents’ jobs, his mother is a physicist, his father an engineer took the family all over the world. In fact, Rao had traveled to more than 20 countries by the time he was eight years old and lived in Saudi Arabia for a time as a child. His lifelong fascination with the natural sciences led him originally to become a pre-med student at the University of California at San Diego, with the serious intention of becoming a surgeon. While in college, however, he enrolled in an acting class, which sparked his interest in the theatre. That

led to his participation in the La Jolla Playhouse Summer Conservatory, where he was trained by Tony Award-winning director Anna Shapiro. He gained his Equity card doing a variety of theatre roles and ultimately decided that his continuing education would be in the arts instead of medical school. The following year, Rao was accepted into the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco. Upon graduation, he landed a role in Tom Stoppard’s “Indian Ink.” His subsequent stage work includes touring with the Manhattan Theatre Club, and plays at the South Coast Rep, Berkeley Rep, and the opening of the Kirk Douglas Theatre in Los Angeles. He has collaborated with such noted stage directors as Les Waters, Gordon Davidson, David Emmes and Carey Perloff, and playwrights such as Joe Hortua, Charles Busch, and Charles L. Mee, the last on two world premieres. Apart from his acting, Rao’s international upbringing and broad range of knowledge and experiences enabled him to become a “Jeopardy” champion, scoring one of the game show’s largest single-day winnings. In 2009, Rao made his feature film debut with a lead role in Sam Raimi’s horror hit “Drag Me to Hell,” following up with a role in blockbuster record-breaker “Avatar,” the top-grossing film of all time. For more information on the film, visit: http:// www.facebook.com/inception

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