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Friday, January 16 2015 | Vol. 34, No. 03

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Members of the Board of Directors of the Ibn Sina Foundation with Texas Governor Rick Perry as he cuts the ribbon to formally open the newest clinic at 5102 N. Shepherd and Pinemont on Monday, January 12.

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January 16, 2015

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COMMUNITY

January 16, 2015

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IACCGH Hosts Inaugural Networking Reception

From Left: IACCGH Executive Director Jagdip Ahluwalia, Board member Aku Patel, Consul General P. Harish, IACCGH Past President Sanjay Ramabhadran, IACCGH President Ashok Garg and Board member Joya Shukla

BY MANU SHAH HOUSTON: Describing the Indo American Chamber of Greater Houston as “dynamic”, Consul General of India in Houston, Honorable P. Harish was the Chief Guest at the IACCGH 2015 Inaugural “Networking Works” Reception. The event was held at The Rotunda Houston City Hall and attended by dignitaries Senator Rodney Ellis, County Clerk Chris Daniels, Senator Cornyn’s District Director Jay Guerrero, MITDC SA Chairman Nishan Khan, ICC President Charlie Patel and Former Houston Mayor Pro Temp Gordon Quan. The event saw the passing of the baton of leadership from outgoing President Sanjay Ramabhadran to incoming President Ashok Garg. Following tradition, the event honored two distinguished business leaders for their longtime support of the Houston business

community. Manuel Gonzalez, recently retired Director of the US Small Business Administration was presented a plaque on behalf of IACCGH by Asif Dakri, CEO of Wallis State Bank, the leading bank in the region for SBA guaranteed loans. Nyamusi Igambi, Senior International trade specialist, recently promoted to Director of the US Commercial Service in Kansas City was presented her plaque by the Honorable Gordon Quan. Executive Director Jagdip Ahluwalia welcomed the gathering. Introducing Past President Ramabhadran as one of the “first volunteers” of the IACCGH and a President who led the Chamber “to new heights,” the Executive Director invited him to give a brief rundown of the events organized by the IACCGH in 2014. In his address, Past President Ramabhadran gave a brief recap on the past year which kicked off

on a high note with Dr. Durga Agrawal’s impressive appointment to the UH Board of Regents. This was followed by India’s Ambassador to the US, H.E. Dr. S. Jaishankar’s reception hosted by IACCGH. The Chamber was also successful in hosting distinguished speakers such as Chancellor Dr. Renu Khator, Secretary of State Nandita Berry and MD Anderson President Dr. Ronald DePinho. The Annual Gala saw Houston’s most influential people with US senior Senator John Cornyn as Keynote Speaker, a successful trade delegation to India in December and a chance meeting with none other than the Dalai Lama was the “icing on the cake” of a rewarding and successful year. Past President Ramabhadran also thanked the Board and friends of the Chamber for their support. Described by Executive Director Jagdip as “a great proponent

IACCGH President Ashok Garg

of the Indo US bilateral trade”, Consul General P. Harish, in his address, appreciated the fact that Presidents were willing to give their time and energy to make the Chamber “dynamic and an important partner”. Describing 2014 as a politically important year for India, he echoed India’s PM Modi’s invitation to invest in India and promised that there would be “no red tape, only a red carpet” for investors. In his address, President Ashok Garg thanked the 70 plus gathering as well as the luminaries for their support. He lauded Past President Sanjay Ramabhadran for his tremendous contribution to the Chamber’s work and believed that the Past President had “raised the bar for all of us.” He also stated that he looked forward to sustaining and strengthening the Chamber’s mission to maximize business opportunities in the Greater Houston region and observed that it is “not just our duty but also in our best

Photos: Bijay Dixit

interests to promote the economic growth of the region”. President Garg also announced plans of a delegation to India with Mayor Parker in April as well as two new programs that are to be launched this year – a Student Internship program with Indian multinationals and an energy meet with members and leaders in the energy field. A unique Rolex watch raffle fundraiser by IACCGH to fund these events was also announced. Describing “networking as one of the golden rules of business” and one of the Chamber’s core missions, he concluded his address by encouraging the gathering to “get to know as many people as possible during the evening.” Upcoming IACCGH events include a Tax Seminar on Sunday, Jan 25 from 2:00 pm at India House and a Small Business Outreach program at the HCC Katy Campus on Thursday, Feb 12 at 6:30 pm. For details, visit www.iaccgh.com or email info@iaccgh.com

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January 16, 2015

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COMMUNITY

January 16, 2015

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Ibn Sina Adds New Clinic in Network of Community Health Services

From left: Dr. Dilawar Ajani, Dr. Aman Jafar, Dr. Aijaz Ali Khowaja, Governor Rick Perry, Dr. Salma Meghani, Nasruddin Rupani, Iqbal Manji, Mohammed Virani, Akber Momin, Nasir Panjwani.

BY JAWAHAR MALHOTRA HOUSTON: Braving the frigid temperatures this past Monday morning, January 12, were the students of the St. Pius X High School Band, several flag bearers and a sole cheerleader who kept warm in her skimpy outfit by keeping moving and twirling the baton. They waited, as did others from the welcoming delegation of VIPs and the media, for Governor Rick Perry to arrive, and when he did and alighted in the parking lot, the band struck up a musical tribute. Perry reciprocated by mingling with the band and posing for pictures. The festivities were part of those arranged for the grand opening of the sixth and latest addition to the network of community clinics that the Ibn Sina Foundation operates within the Houston area. This one is located at the corner of Pinemont at 5012 North Shepherd Drive, almost across from the St.

Pius High School, and in a part of the city where it can serve the neediest. It is a transitional area where large homes have occasionally started to pop up amidst the more modest dwellings that dot the landscape. The Ibn Sina Foundation was established in 2001 by a group of local physicians, business and healthcare professionals to provide low cost preventative and primary care to the large population of underserved people in the greater Houston area. It began with its first landmark clinic at 11226 S. Wilcrest near West Bellfort, next to Savoy Foods, and added more clinics in other parts of the area, serving almost 360,000 since then till now. The Foundation, headed by CEO Dr. Aijaz Ali Khowaja, is always on the lookout to expand its reach and the new clinic represents it latest attempts to provide more indigent care. Apart from some private donor foundations, the clinic has received Federal, State and City funding grants. Gov. Perry’s attendance at the ceremony

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Elect Greg Abbott. After Perry was introduced to the guests inside, he was given a tour of the clinic and then escorted to the enclosed tent in the parking lot behind the clinic for a program that was emceed by Channel 11 KHOU TV anchorwoman Sher-Min Chou. ISF Chairman Nasruddin Rupani welcomed the gathering, and then the ISF then unveiled plans for opening two additional clinics within the next two years, a pediatric clinic and a dental clinic to be funded by donations from Asha and Farid Virani and Farida and Nasruddin Rupani. City of Houston’s Mayor Pro-Tem, Ed Gonzalez and Housing and Community Development Department, Director Neal Rackleff made brief congratulatory remarks and Sada Cumber introduced Gov. Perry to the podium. In his keynote speech, Perry spoke about the admiration for the work that the ISF was doing and its great benefit to the community. He then helped with giving out some awards of distinction to community members and Dr. Ajani closed out the event. The North Shepherd clinic started seeing patients the next day and Dr. Khowaja noted that “approximately 15,000 outpatients will be seen this year for both medical and den-

From left: Dr. Aijaz Ali Khowaja (CEO), Governor Rick Perry, Dr. Dilawar Ajani (Sr. Vice Chairman), Nasruddin Rupani (Chairman).

and performing the ribbon cutting marked a circle back to the time when he performed the same functions at the opening of the first clinic as a young governor 14 years ago. He reminisced how he and his wife Anita had visited the first clinic at that time and thanked the ISF for seeing a need for community healthcare and fixing it. “It was a true grassroots solution to a problem, and in my experience those are the ones that work best. It is the Texas way,” he declared. This was among the last duties Perry will perform before stepping down as Governor on January 20 and passing on the reins to Gov.-

tal care.” All the clinics are dedicated to serving low-income families in cardiology, pediatrics, gynecology, diagnostic imaging, oncology and ophthalmology. Since its inception, the Ibn Sina Clinics have provided free or reduced-cost medical, specialty and dental care for uninsured, underinsured or indigent individuals in the greater Houston region including Fort Bend, Jefferson, Brazoria and Galveston Counties. Patients pay a flat $30 fee for Primary Care and no appointments are necessary. For more information visit www.ibnsinafoundation.org.

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, JANUARY 16, 2015 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


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January 16, 2015

COMMUNITY

Utsav Brings the Ultimate Ethnic Fashion Wardrobe to Town

nival team. The range is also an exciting amalgam of exquisite craftsmanship, celebratory hues and fancy drapes. UCarnival in 2015 will showcase the finest array of Sarees, Salwar Kameez, Indo Western Tunics and more. The outfits and accessories at UCarnival are the very latest of the fashion season. There is a magical fusion of traditional designs and contemporary fabrics, cuts and embellishments. The range is inspired by global runway trends from the world’s style hubs and the style expressions of Bollywood. Till date there have been more than 134 events in 110 cities across USA. UCarnival has successfully taken Indian Ethnic

HOUSTON: An exclusive website for Indian attires and accessories, Utsav Fashion offers an eclectic collection of ethnic clothing right from Sarees, Salwar Kameez, Lehengas, Indo-western wear to Footwear, Handbags, Jewelry, and Accessories to match. Here’s where online shoppers can uncover a range of Indian fashion outfits and bridal wear handpicked from all corners of the country, reflecting the vibrancy inherent in all things Indian! Utsav Fashion, endeavors to take the magic of India to different cities of USA on the wings of UCarnival - the complete show of all things beautiful! For those smitten by the colors, textures and glittering embellishments adorning Indian ethnic attires, UCarnival style expo is the place to be. UCarnival began its voyage in USA in the year 2012 with shows in 10 cities. Enthused by the response, Utsav Fashion has turned the show into a much-awaited annual event. It is now a pan-America fashion carnival covering almost all big and small cities across the country. Hosted at strategically located venues, the traveling expo is a major draw for shoppers who love the touch and feel of fabrics, wish to try on the fits before purchase and enjoy the warm friendly guidance of the UCar-

Fashion places, to the extent that people plan their shopping itinerary in accordance with the dates of the fair’s arrival in their city. UCarnival, makes sure shoppers are informed of the fair schedule well in advance so that they have plenty of time to draw up their wish list of wardrobe must-haves. Lovers of Indian ethnic fashion can check out their social calendar for birthdays, weddings, parties and festive occasions in the coming months. They can then plan their UCarnival shopping in right earnest. More than 35000 people have attended the UCarnival and have enjoyed exploring the timeless elegance, authentic fabrics and wide range on offer. Today the show has a rich repository of happy customers, and many exciting plans on the anvil. The latest show at Houston was held at Holiday Inn, Houston in Westchase for 3 days, from January 9 to 11. It opened to a warm response from India lovers who thronged the venue to shop for designer sarees, salwar kameez, Indo Western tunics, stylish readymade blouses, leggings and clutch bags. Most of the shoppers were enthusiastic about the fusion of Indian traditions with Western silhouettes. The event proved that Indian Ethnic Fashion continues to hold sway over the minds and hearts of customers worldwide.

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January 16, 2015

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COMMUNITY

January 16, 2015

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Local Protest at Indian Consulate on Continued Incarceration of Sikhs BY JAWAHAR MALHOTRA

Members of the local Sikh community protested in front on the Indian Consulate General on Scotland St. for a few hours.

Harjit Galhotra reads from a prepared statement of demands

HOUSTON: With an activist continuing his hunger strike in India for now over 60 days, members of the local Sikh community staged a protest in front of the local Indian Consulate General on Scotland St. in the heart of the city to drawn attention to his plight and the reasons behind his strike. About 250 people showed up on a cold Wednesday afternoon on January 7 across the street from the Consulate and used bullhorns to shout their demands and grievances. Several leaders of the protest later sought to present a memorandum of the same to the Consul General or other officials, but were unable to do so and instead were asked that they leave it with the receptionist. According to organizers of the protest, Gurbaksh Singh Khalsa has been on hunger strike, surviving only on water, in Gurudwara Lakhnaur Sahib near Ambala to seek the permanent release of Sikh prisoners who are still in jail despite having completed their prison terms. Khalsa has lost 44 lbs (20 kg) since he began the strike on November 14, 2014. He has been joined in the hunger

strike by a companion, Gurpiyar Singh who has shifted from Ambala to near the Jantar Mantar in New Delhi. This is the second time that Khalsa has gone on hunger strike over the same reasons. His last

fast ended after 44 days on December 27, 2013 after he had received assurances of the release of two prisoners, Lakhwinder Singh and Shamsher Singh. This time around,

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COMMUNITY

10 January 16, 2015

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COMMUNITY

January 16, 2015

Welcoming the New Year at Sri Govindaji Gaudiya Matha

Sri Sri Sita Rama Laxman Hanuman

HOUSTON: Sri Govindaji Gaudiya Matha welcomed the New Year with beautiful devotional bhajans, kirtan, aarati, Tulasi puja and prasadam. Over three hundred attended in the specially decorated 8,000 square foot temple hall. There was much to be grateful for and much to celebrate. Last year was wonderful and the coming year promises to

be another good one for the temple and its devotees. There were several melodious voices accompanied by harmonium, mridanga, flute and khartals. The melodies and words of the bhajans carried everyone’s hearts to the spiritual realm and reminded us of the true reality often obscured behind the maya (illusion) of daily life.

Most of the bhajans were sung by the high school devotee students from Bhakti Gurukula (Sunday School). Everyone was enthralled seeing so many young devotees who sing so well and lead all in wonderful worship of the Deities. Two young devotees dedicated a dance to Lord Krishna in keeping with the festive New Year’s Spirit. An inspiring lecture was delivered by Subal Sakha Prabhu, in which he reminded everyone that this life is temporary and that real happiness lies in devotional service. He encouraged everyone to make the New Year resolution to dedicate themselves to the service of the Lord and His teachings. He explained that the temple is planning to significantly expand its spiritual educational and cultural activities for children and that everyone can help expand various services that the temple offers. The evening’s worship was followed by a sumptuous South Indian feast prepared by the South Indian devotees and congregation members of the temple. The presiding Deities at the Temple are: Sri Radha Govindaji; Sri Gaura Nitai and Sri Sita Rama CONTINUED ON PAGE

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COMMUNITY

January 16, 2015

The Pursuit to Honor His Guiding Light, the Gayatri Mantra, Leads to World Hindu Congress

Dr. Randeep Suneja attended the World Hindu Congress in New Delhi with his brother Dr. Pradeep Suneja (right).

BY JAWAHAR MALHOTRA KATY: Without a doubt, he is sure, that his unshakeable faith in the Gayatri Mantra has been one of the reasons for his success in his career as a physician and has also guided him to courageously face the challenges in his life. Growing up in Karol Bagh in New Delhi and attending the Arya Samaj mandir with his father Om Prakash Suneja (who was the Secretary of the mandir for 25 years), he learnt not only the importance of the Gayatri Mantra and memorized the Sandhya and havan which he continues to recite faithfully every day. It has become second nature to him to quickly recite and seek strength from the shlouk, even as he starts any medical procedure. “The Gayatri Mantra has always given me the strength and wisdom to go on the path of righteousness,” said Dr. Randeep Suneja, who has a large practice in Katy and is consistently listed among the top renowned cardiologists in the area. He was referring to the ancient Vedic Sanskrit verse from the Rigveda (3.62.10) which is believed to have been revealed to the Brahmarishi Vishvamitra. It consists of 24 syllables, three line of eight syllables each with the first line being an invocation, thus: Aum Bhur Bhuvah Swah, Tat Savitur Varenyam Bhargo Devasya Dhimahi, Dhiyo Yo Nah Prachodayat. A basic translation of the Gayatri Mantra is: “Oh God, the Protector, the basis of all life, Who is self-existent, Who is free from all pains and Whose contact frees the soul from all troubles, Who pervades the Universe and sustains all, the Creator and Energizer of the whole Universe, the Giver of happiness, Who is worthy of acceptance, the most excellent, Who is Pure and the Purifier of all, let us embrace that very God, so that He may direct our mental faculties in the right direction.” Suneja’s pursuit to spread the benefits of reciting the Gayatri Mantra led him to found

Dr. Suneja with American Hindu spiritual leader and author David Frawley at the Congress

the Gayatri Mantra Global Foundation on November 16, 2014 and while researching information on Hinduism, he learnt of the World Hindu Congress which was to be held in New Delhi this past November 21 to 23. Convinced that it would provide him with a network of like-minded people, Suneja registered and attended the event in his home town and his brother, Pradeep, a just-retired physician, came along too. They were among the 1,800 delegates from 53 countries and who heard from over 200 speakers. The opening address was by the Dalai Lama who spoke for over an hour to pindrop silence as he explained his philosophy of universal love and peace, his life, as of other Tibetans in exile in Ladakh and how much he had learnt from Hinduism and ancient Hindu culture. “You could feel CONTINUED ON PAGE

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INDIA/ COMMUNITY

U.S. Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Against India PM Modi Over 2002 Riots BY JOSEPH AX Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will not have to face a U.S. lawsuit claiming he failed to stop anti-Muslim rioting in 2002, a federal judge in New York ruled on Wednesday. U.S. District Judge Analisa Torres upheld the U.S. Department of State’s determination that Modi is entitled to immunity as a sitting head of government from civil lawsuits filed in U.S. courts. The lawsuit, filed in September by an obscure human rights group on the eve of Mo-

di’s maiden visit to the United States, made international headlines at the time, though officials from both countries brushed it off as a distraction. Joseph Whittington, the president of the human rights group American Justice Center and a city council member in Harvey, Illinois, acknowledged in September that the case had little chance of succeeding but said there was victory in “symbolism.” Babak Pourtavoosi, a lawyer who represented the center, and Whittington did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The judge’s decision comes ahead of a planned visit by President Barack Obama to attend India’s Jan. 26 Republic Day celebrations at Modi’s invitation. The lawsuit claimed Modi, a Hindu nationalist, did nothing to halt riots in his home state of Gujarat in which more than 1,000 people died in reprisals after a train carrying Hindu pilgrims was set on fire. As a result of the allegations, Modi was denied a U.S. visa in 2005, but Obama was quick to invite him to the United States after Modi’s election as prime minister. The September visit was intended to revi-

talize the two countries’ relationship, which was severely strained in 2013 when U.S. authorities in New York arrested an Indian diplomat, Devyani Khobragade, for underpaying a domestic worker and subjected her to a strip search. The State Department later granted her immunity and essentially had her expelled in a series of diplomatic maneuvers. Whittington said last fall that some of his constituents in Illinois were refugees from the Gujarat violence, prompting him to take action against Modi. The State Department did not immediately comment on the ruling. A spokesperson for Modi could not immediately be reached outside of business hours in India, and the Indian embassy in Washington did not respond to a request for comment. -www.reuters.com

The Pursuit to Honor His Guiding Light, the Gayatri Mantra, Leads to World Hindu Congress CONTINUED FROM PAGE

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his Divine, spiritual aura,” said Suneja of the experience, “as he connected with the hearts of people. It was an experience of a lifetime!” Before the program started, Suneja had a chance encounter with Ashok Singhal, the previous President for over 20 years of the Vishva Hindu Parishad. Suneja mentioned that he thought that Prime Minister Narender Modi’s election was the best thing that had happened to India in 67 years. He replied “No!! That’s not right.” “I was taken aback by Singhalji’s response,” recalled Suneja, “but then he added ‘It’s the best thing that has happened to India since 1192 when Prithvi Raj Chauhan ruled India!’” Suneja was also impressed by the young and dynamic new Minister of Human Resources Development, Smriti Irani who explained how the education initiative was permeating down to villages on a mass scale through free web-based learning. Another speaker was David Frawley, the American Hindu spiritual leader and author. Encouraged by the contacts he made, Suneja was further heartened by learning that the next World Hindu Congress will be held in the US in 2018 and has even suggested that the venue be in Houston and hopes to be included in the organizing committee. Meanwhile, Suneja continues on with his plans for a global launch of his Gayatri Mantra Global Foundation website this summer and will be heading off to India in late May to oversee its final production. His ultimate goal is to hold a World Gayatri Mantra Day with 24-hour chanting to spread the power of the message contained therein. “The message is simple but powerful,” said Suneja of his guiding force. “God is omnipresent, omnipotent and universal and gives direction and strength,” he added with a glowing, confident look, “and this is the message I want to spread.”

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Local Protest at Indian Consulate on Continued Incarceration of Sikhs

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The protested were demanding the release of Sikhs who have been held in prison beyond their incarceration periods and to bring attention to the hunger strike in India by Gurbachan Singh.

Khalsa was seeking the release of seven Sikh prisoners, including

those convicted for the assassination of former Punjab Chief Min-

ister Beant Singh in 1995 and the 1993 Delhi bomb blast. According to news reports, the Shiromani Akali Das government has already moved the Supreme Court to free all 13 prisoners who have completed their terms and are eligible for parole, however their BJP ally does not support this move. The Punjab BJP initially supported Khalsa’s protest but later changed its mind. The Houston protest rally was organized and supported by 21 Sikh Gurudwaras and organizations in Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Austin, Beaumont and Lake Charles.

COMMUNITY

Welcoming the New Year at Sri Govindaji Gaudiya Matha CONTINUED FROM PAGE

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Laksmana Hanuman. There are six regular aaratis and darshans every day. Visitors are warmly welcome anytime and are especially encouraged to attend our Sunday services. You will find traditional Vedic teachings, worship and values in an American setting. Sri Govindaji Gaudiya Matha temple is located at 16628 Kieth Harrow Blvd, Houston, TX 77084. It is very convenient for the following areas: Katy, Cy-Fair, Sugar Land, the Energy Corridor, Memorial and Tomball. Every Sunday bhajans and kirtan start 5 PM; Vedic lecture (English) at 5:45;

Sri Sri Radha Govindaji

aarati at 6:45 followed by delicious healthy prasadam. Gurukula for children in grades K-12 is at 5:45 PM. Hindi classes (levels 1 and 2) are at 5 PM. For more information, visit www.sggm.org or call (832) 4644686.

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, JANUARY 16, 2015 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


COMMUNITY

January 16, 2015

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Club 65 Celebrates Christmas Early

BY DR. JASEEM PASHA HOUSTON:While the Houstonian Seniors were still raving about the uplifting Christmas Party that was hosted by the Club 65 last month, the Club kicked off the New Year of 2015 with another joyful and invigorating party on January 3, enlivened with songs, music and dances. The venue was at Bayland Community Center, at 6400 Bissonnet Street in Houston. The seniors thronged at the entrance of the Hall, creating an ambience as if the holiday spirit was not over. The hall looked festive with colorful tablecloths, New Year Balloons and fresh flowers on the reception table. To the delight of every senior, a special little gift was handed out to each member. The gift was given as a courtesy of Fatehali Chatur, who is well known in Houston community for his passion for serving the seniors. Paru McGuire, President of Club 65 welcomed the members to yet another exciting and fun filled day. Among the few organizational items, Paru McGuire encouraged the members to volunteer for different committees. The members’ response

was enthusiastically positive. She also reminded the members for the final sign-up to the Casino trip scheduled for January 18. Twenty more members signed up for the same. The theme was “Bollywood” and Maithily Sripadam along with her three assistants led the Club 65 members into a medley of Bollywood hits. The response was overwhelming with the members eager to learn the dance. Both male and female members participated. The hour went by fast and Club 65 members were also entertained with the 3 assistants performing a couple of dances. This was followed by a scrumptious lunch and garma garam chai. With delicious food, music and dance, the event was well attended. The second half of the program was Bingo, led by Farina Jinnah. Each and every member participated in the game and prizes were handed out to the winners. There was the initial confusion regarding rules for the game, which was soon smoothed out and the game proceeded with a lot of applause for each winner as they won a prize. The event also highlighted the annual membership drive, in addition

to the members paying their annual dues. There were several seniors who also signed and became the new members. The club that has been in existence since April of 2012 has now grown to 115 members. The goal for 2015 is 200 members. Club 65 is a non-profit organization under the umbrella of IMAGH (Indian Muslims of Greater Houston). To find out more about Club 65 or to become a member, visit, www. imagh.org or call Paru Mcguire at 440-390-1763.

“IT HAPPENS ONLY IN INDIA”

Greater Houston Tamil School Westheimer Branch Moves to a New location

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HOUSTON: Westheimer Tamil School (WHTS), a branch of the Greater Houston Tamil School (HTS), has moved to a new location - 8925 Lipan Road, Houston, TX 77063! The inauguration ceremony was conducted on Dec 20. HTS president Gopal Krishnan inaugurated

the location and presided over the function. Westheimer Tamil School Principal Jegadesh Sankar Selvasrinivasan gave the inaugural address. HTS Treasurer Venkat Ponnusamy, Pearland Tamil School Vice-Principal and Accreditation Task Force Lead Sankar Kannan, Westheimer

Tamil School Parents, Teachers and Students attended the program. Greater Houston Tamil School is a non-profit school run entirely by volunteers with the objective of teaching Tamil, an ancient and literature-rich CONTINUED ON PAGE

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INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, JANUARY 16, 2015 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


18 January 16, 2015 Roman Hindi Thik Hain? One of the perpetual debates in our society is the importance of Hindi versus English. At a broader level, it can be extended to any vernacular language-versus-English debate, and how we risk losing our local languages to English. It is a politically charged issue, with each government trying to show its allegiance to Hindi more than the other. Consequently, you have the ‘promote Hindi’ drives, with government offices mandatorily issuing all circulars in Hindi and state-run schools largely being Hindi medium. Meanwhile, English continues to grow like never before without any promotional drive. This is because it offers better career prospects, more respectability in society, a completely new world of information/entertainment and access to technology. After all, you can’t even use a mobile phone or basic messaging apps today without a cursory understanding of English. Understandably, Hindi lovers and purists lament the new society where the youth shun their mother tongue and want to enter the English world as fast as possible. The more they impose Hindi, the more the youth rebel against it. What is a Hindi lover (myself included) to do? And what can we all do to save Hindi without making it seem like a burden or obligation? There is a solution. It is embracing Roman Hindi. Roman Hindi is not Hinglish. It is Hindi language written in the Anglo-Saxon script instead of Devanagri. For example, ‘aap kaise hain?’ is Hindi for ‘how are you?’, but written in the English script. Why is this important? Well, because the Anglo Saxon script is ubiquitous. It is on computer key boards and telephone touchscreens. It is already popular, especially among the youth. Millions of Indians, for instance, use Whatsapp where most conversations are in Hindi, although using the Roman script. Sure, Devanagri downloads are available, but few use them. In fact, many Devanagri keyboards on phones use something known as transliteration, where you type in Roman Hindi first and the software will convert the text to Hindi. In other words, the user is still using Roman Hindi. Roman Hindi is already prevalent in Bollywood posters and in our advertising. Most Hindi movie screenplays are today written in Roman Hindi. Drive around any major city and you are bound to see a hoarding with a Hindi caption written in Roman script. However, Hindi experts, purists and defenders are either largely unaware or indifferent to these developments. They do not see the difference between Hindi the language and its script. People still love Hindi, they just find it difficult to incorporate the script in their modern, technology-driven lives. We can save Hindi by legitimizing the Roman Hindi script. This will also have a unifying effect on the nation as it will bring English and Hindi speakers closer. It will also allow other regional languages to become more linked to each other and to English, by virtue of a common script. Waqt ke saath badalna zaroori hai. You understood that sentence, right? —Chetan Bhagat in Times of India

EDITORIAL/COMMENTARY Creating a Global Nation

BY C. RAJA MOHAN Prime Minister Narendra Modi has kept his promise to the overseas Indian communities during his visits to the United States and Australia on making it easier for them to travel to India and participate in its national life. In issuing an ordinance this week to merge two separate schemes — Overseas Citizen of India and the Person of Indian Origin — Modi has implemented a decision that was first announced by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in 2011. With much greater sensitivity to the diaspora and its needs than the Congress leadership, Modi was quick to make Singh’s proposal his own. If the required constitutional amendment to the Citizenship Act was going to take time, the PM was ready to go the ordinance route. Modi’s enthusiastic engagement of the diaspora is more than a tactical move to please rich and successful Indians abroad. He has repeatedly affirmed the importance of the contributions that overseas Indians could make in the transformation of India. At the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas in Gandhinagar, Modi showcased the possibilities for the diaspora to contribute to various new initiatives of his government — from cleaning the Ganga to modernizing India’s infrastructure. This idea, too, is not new. It dates back to the institution of the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 2003, following a report by a committee headed by L.M. Singhvi. Modi’s intensive outreach to the diaspora can’t be explained in such instrumental terms as creating strategic assets abroad for the conduct of Indian foreign policy. That process was also begun during the years of Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi and developed by his successors. Nor can his interest in the diaspora be parsed in terms of promoting India’s soft power. International interest in India’s culture, arts and philosophy has been steadily growing through the last century, and there is little the Delhi Durbar can add. Modi’s policy must be seen as the culmination of a recent shift in the

The merger of the OCI and PIO cards extends the benefits of visa liberalization to a much larger section of the diaspora. way independent India thinks about the diaspora. When India became a territorial republic, it drew a definitive line of separation between itself and the diaspora. India’s first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, asked and answered unambiguously the question about the relationship between New Delhi and the diaspora. He insisted that the large Indian communities that had moved to far corners of the British empire and beyond through the 19th and early 20th centuries, were “not Indian nationals”. The millions of Indians dispersed around the world, in one stroke, became “aliens”. Nehru argued that Delhi’s interest in them can, at best, be “cultural and humanitarian, and not political” The reversal of this mental separation began in earnest amidst India’s economic globalization in the 1990s, when Delhi began to see the utility of reconnecting with the diaspora. Vajpayee injected a new dimension when he called for a “partnership among all children of Mother India so that India can emerge as a major global player”. Modi appears to have internalized Vajpayee’s proposition articulated at the first gathering of the diaspora in 2003: “We do not want only your investment. We also want your ideas,” Vajpayee said. “We do not want your riches; we want the richness of your experience. We can gain from the breadth of vision that your global exposure has given you,” he said. The merger of the OCI and PIO cards extends the benefits of visa liberalization to a much larger sec-

tion of the diaspora. If the OCI card privileged the post-Independence emigrants from India, the new system draws in a large section of those who left the physical shores of India in the century and a half before Independence. More broadly, Modi’s interest in the diaspora is about recognizing India’s possibilities as a “global nation” that is not defined in narrow territorial terms. Delhi, of course, is not yet ready to give dual citizenship of the kind that some countries do. But short of political rights for the diaspora, Modi has begun to offer much. Speaking at the Madison Square Garden in September 2014, Modi compared the universal character of America and India. Much in the manner that people from all over the world made America, Modi said, Indians have travelled far and wide and contributed immensely to the development of many countries. Modi’s openness to the diaspora should, hopefully, crack open India’s generally unwelcoming attitude to “foreigners” that has congealed over the last many decades of inward orientation. While the Modi government’s policy of visa on arrival is a small step forward, Delhi is a long way from bringing its visa policies in line with an economy that today is interconnected with the rest of the world. Obtaining visas for conferences and long-term visas for work and study in India remains extremely difficult. A global India needs more efficient ways of balancing the imperatives of security and openness. If the republic at its founding overly differentiated between those physically present in geographic India and outside it, the Partition of the subcontinent created new boundaries, as well as multiple citizenships. Modi’s new liberalism towards the diaspora needs to be complemented by the vision for a freer movement of people and goods, as well as capital and labour, across borders within the subcontinent. A global India must necessarily be a regional India. The writer, a distinguished fellow at the Observer Research Foundation, Delhi, is contributing editor for ‘The Indian Express’

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January 16, 2015

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, JANUARY 16, 2015 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM

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HOUSTON: Beginning last year, Houston students Sachin Shetty and Sachin Sanam began their project to change the face of the National Marrow Donor Program, Be The Match. When they started their project, the statistics for minorities on the registry was very low. For example, only 7% of the registry consisted of Asians/ South Asians. Both boys aimed to change these low numbers for all ethnicities. Finding time out of their lives as high school students, they volunteered at bone marrow drives in order to sign more registrants and educate the public. By the end of the year, they had added 139 people of varying ancestries to the registry. In addition to the registrants, the boys raised nearly $2,000 for the cause. While not always signing up people to the registry, they successfully brought awareness to the community to spread word of this cause. This year, the boys have enlisted the help of two other classmates, Anushka Madhuvarshi and Adrian Moga, in order to effectively spread awareness on the issue. Their team

hopes to surpass the number of people they added last year, bring more media to help people far and wide see the importance of “giving life”, and raise enough funds to ensure the registry’s ability to help patients. Many leukemia patients within the South Asian community as well as other communities are in desperate need of a transplant, and they will meet this demand. Recently, one of the patients, Traneka Davis, whom they were searching a match for passed away, but this, they say, “is only a testament towards the importance of our goals”. Instead of mainly targeting the South Asian community this year, the team wants to use their diverse backgrounds to interact with people from all walks of life. Donating to a patient is no easy decision, but these boys feel that the decision can be life-changing and rewarding. The entire process is effortless with little to no side-effects, and provides the platform for saving another human’s life, a “win-win” situation. On a closing note, this year’s team feels confident that they can surpass

their previous goals, and make a lasting impact on the global community. As part of their school’s Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA), they want to take their impact and educate the community and their peers on the importance of saving human lives and doing good. They urge all the readers to learn more by visiting a bone marrow drive in a local community center, or visiting bethematch.org.

Greater Houston Tamil School Westheimer Branch Moves to a New Location CONTINUED FROM PAGE

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South Asian classical language, to individuals in the greater Houston area. Currently, it conducts classes to around 350 students at five locations (Pearland, Katy, Woodlands, Westheimer/Houston and Sugarland). Westheimer Tamil School was started

in Dec 2013 at the Robinson-Westchase Neighborhood Library with 14 students and 2 teachers. Since then, the school has grown to 32 children attending various levels from Kindergarten to level 3. The School currently has 9 dedicated teachers and various volunteer groups. To provide more quality education to the students, the school has moved to new location with class room style amenities starting Dec 6 2014. During the event, former HTS board member, Malar Selvan, gave a brief overview of the history of HTS. WHTS Principal, Jegadesh Sankar Selvasrinivasan, briefed the audience about various school functions, school curriculum, evaluation methods and graduation criteria. He also thanked “Houston Tamil Church” and its board members for graciously agreeing to rent the facility. Sponsors were also honored. After the Principal’s speech, HTS Accreditation Task Force (ATF) Lead Sankar Kannan talked about the future of Tamil learning in American Schools. He mentioned that, as a first step towards getting recognition for Tamil Language as a credited course in the regular American School Sys-

tem , ATF has helped three HTS member schools (Pearland, Katy and Woodlands) to get accredited by Advanced ED (a non-profit, nonpartisan organization that conducts rigorous, on-site external audits of PreK-12 schools and school systems). The information was well received by the Westheimer Tamil School stakeholders and has inspired them to get accredited in coming years. HTS President Gopal Krishnan then talked about the importance of teaching Tamil language and explained how the HTS branches were dedicated towards providing quality education to children in the greater Houston area. Westheimer Tamil School Parent Teacher Council (PTC) Representative Murugan Arumugam explained the role of PTC. A new library was also inaugurated with the Librarian Jai Murugesh handing over the first book to former HTS Treasurer Professor Radha Krishnan. The event ended with a vote of thanks from the Principal. For further information on Greater Houston Tamil School, see http://houstontamilschools.org/.

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, JANUARY 16, 2015 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


INDIA

January 16, 2015

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Mama’s Punjabi Recipes Pakore (Fried Fritters)

Some spicy North Indian snacks have become so popular all over the world that they are popping up in the most unexpected places: on the menus of other eateries. Pakore (or pakoras) are just one such item along with samose (or samosas). These inexpensive snacks are usually fried: though a few people try to bake them, the taste is just not the same. In India, poor people can sometimes make a whole meal eating pakoras rolled up in a roti, with a little chutney. Pakora means covering an edible in a chickpea flour batter and then frying it. Pakoras are satisfying because they can be made with a spicy batter with different vegetables and even with cubes of paneer. People sometimes confuse pakore with the shredded vegetables balls usually used as an ingredient in a kofte curry, but the main difference is that the kofte have the vegetables mixed into the dough which are then fried. On the other hand, Punjabi kadhi tastes best when made with plain pakoras rather than those with vegetables in them. And then there are the little pakodiyan (chickpea flour drops) that are plain and used in raita. Some people also make pakoras with chicken or fish. Chickpea flour is also called besan and come from dry roasted garbanzos (or chickpeas) which is then ground. It is high in carbohydrates, but contains no gluten and has a higher protein content than other flours. Ingredients: 1.5 cups besan (chickpea flour) Water – enough to make run ning paste 2 small aloo (potatoes) ¼ head of phul gobi (cauli flower) Other vegetables: onions, egg plant or bell peppers Spices to taste: namak (salt), mirch (red pepper)

Directions: 1. Wash the vegetables and cut the aloo into ¼ inch thick chips and separate the florets of the cauliflower into medium pieces. If using other vegetables, you

KADAI MUSHROOM MASALA

Ingredients: Ground Masala Powder Cumin seeds 1 Teaspoon Cloves 3 count Cinnamon 1 inch Cardamom 2 count Cashews 10 count Ingredients : Gravy Mushroom (White button )

7 count Green Bell pepper/ Capsicum 1 small Red Bell pepper / Capsicum 1 small Onion 1 large (or 1 cup finely chopped Green Chili (short variety) 2count Tomato (Ripe) 4 medium (or 2 cups crushed) Ginger Garlic paste1 Teaspoon Dry Fenugreek leaves/Kasuri methi 1 Teaspoon Red Chilli Powder 1 Teaspoon (Use Kashmiri chili powder for color)

Coriander Powder 2 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder 1/4 Teaspoon Salt 1 + 1/2 teaspoon (or adjust to taste) Oil 2 Tablespoon Butter / Ghee 1 Tablespoon Fresh Cream 2 Teaspoon (or regular 2% milk 1/4 cup) Water 1/4 cup Directions: 1. Clean your mushrooms and chop them into thin slices. Cut your bell peppers/Capsicums into thick chunks and keep aside. Grind your whole garam masala with cashews to a fine

can cut them in similar fashion. 2. Place in a bowl and sprinkle with namak and mirch and let them stay for a while so that they become a little soft. 3. Mix in namak and mirch into 1.5 cups of besan and water till it becomes a soft, running paste. 4. Heat the oil in a karahi (wok). Throw in a small dab of batter to make sure the oil is very hot. Take a piece of vegetable, dip it into the batter then release it into the hot oil. Keep doing this till the surface of the oil is covered with battered pieces. 5. When one side is slightly brown, turn it over using a sieved spatula and turn over a few times to make sure both sides are cooked. Be careful that they do not become dark brown.

Take them out and place on a paper towel to absorb the extra oil. 6. Pakoras are best when served hot with some tomato ketchup or mint chutney. Shakuntla Malhotra is a skilled cook of Punjabi dishes made in the old-fashioned style that she learnt as a young woman in her ancestral home in Lyallpur, India before it became part of Pakistan after the Partition in 1947. People have often admired her cooking for its simplicity and taste that comes with each mouthful. Even in her mid-eighties, she continues to cook daily and agreed to share some of her delectable Punjabi recipes.

MAMA’S TIP OF THE WEEK HOW TO CELEBRATE LOHRI

Lohri is celebrated all over the Punjab and by Punjabis everywhere on January 13 – it is one of the few days when the Gregorian and Hindu calenders are in sync - to mark the end of the dark cold nights after the Winter Solstice and the end of the month of Pausa (December-January). It is also a celebration of the winter harvests and the next day is the first of the Hindu month of Magh Sangrand (or Makara Sankranti) which starts off with a kite flying festival. For Punjabis, Lohri is really a joyous occasion to make the passage of a newly-born son or newlyweds through their first winter. Bonfires are lit at sunset, people toss sesame seeds, gur (jaggery), rewaries (sugar-candies) into it and sit around it, singing folk songs and dancing till the fire dies out. Some people perform prayers; and it is traditional to offer guests til, gachchak, gur, moonphali (peanuts) and phuliyan (popcorn). In a form of trick or treat, people go from bonfires (signifying the house has a newborn) and sing, expecting a treat of sweets or money in return. powder and keep aside. 2. Heat oil and butter in a kadai/ Wok or if you can’t find one, just use a regular frying pan. Add cumin seeds and once it sizzles add the onions and green chilies along with crushed dry fenugreek leaves and let cook until it turns translucent. 3. Once its starts to brown add the ginger garlic paste, followed by crushed tomatoes. Let the tomatoes cook for about 5 minutes over low flame or until it turns mushy. 4. Now add the turmeric powder, Red chili powder,coriander powder and salt. Add water and let the masala cook a little bit.

5. Add ground masala powder (Whole garam masala + Cashews). Let it cook till the oil separates from the masala. 6. Once the masala is cooked, add the chopped veggies and cook for another 2 minutes. Do not cook any longer as we want the veggies to cook to some extent as well as to look colorful. 7. Now add fresh cream or milk, give a quick stir and simmer for few minutes and switch off. Serve hot with Fried rice, Chapati and raw onion slices. -www.spiceindiaonline.com

INDO AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, JANUARY 16, 2015 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


ENTERTAINMENT

January 16, 2015

Movie Review: Tevar

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan to Begin Work on Sanjay Gupta’s Next

BY PRASHANT SINGH

BY ANUPAMA CHOPRA The hardest thing about Tevar is reconciling the director with the film. Amit Ravindernath Sharma is an award-winning advertising whiz kid. Among his many triumphs is a commercial for Google about two childhood friends who lose each other during Partition and are reunited by their Google-empowered grandchildren. But Tevar shows only intermittent flashes of his enormous talent. An adaptation of the Telugu blockbuster

Okkadu, Tevar is tiring, predictable, and largely banal. Pintoo (Arjun Kapoor) lives in Agra. Radhika (Sonakshi Sinha) is a Mathura girl. Their paths cross when Radhika is being abducted by Bhahubali Gajendra (Manoj Bajpayee). Gajendra is your run-of-the-mill UP criminal politician. Gajendra sees Radhika and becomes mesmerised. She tries to get away. Pintoo comes to the rescue and they spend the rest of the film trying to outrun Gajendra. What’s interesting here is the idea

of a psychotic killer being undone by love. Amit creates some striking sequences. His supporting cast feature some real standouts. The camerawork by Laxman Utekar is distinctive. But the film remains tonally inconsistent. The result is a mishmash that left me exhausted and unsatisfied. However, I’m looking forward to Amit’s next film. Tevar is a bumpy start but I think more exciting cinematic adventures lie ahead. -HIndustan Times

MUMBAI: Now, nearly five years later — and post Aaradhya’s birth — Aishwarya Rai Bachchan will be back to work on Monday (January 12). The actor, along with her costars Irrfan Khan, Shabana Azmi and Anupam Kher, among others, will undergo an elaborate script-reading session for Sanjay Gupta’s next directorial venture. An insider says, “The makers want the actors and other technicians to be comfortable with one another and let them understand each other’s working styles before the film starts rolling. That’s why the entire primary, as well as secondary cast (of about 17-18 actors) in addition to the heads of the other departments of the movie, will be present at the script-reading

session.” Incidentally, the script-reading session was supposed to take place on January 9, but had to be delayed due to Irrfan’s ill health. “Yes, we would have got it done on Friday, but Irrfan was bedridden so we couldn’t do it. But now, we are set to go ahead on Monday,” confirms Gupta, who will fine-tune the script with his team “to perfection” before the script-reading session. Ask Gupta why he is holding such a session, which isn’t the norm in Bollywood, and he says, “Internationally, it’s the norm. More than anything, it helps the cast bond with each other before the shooting starts. It’s a better arrangement than having the actors reach the sets and directly begin reading their lines in front of each other.” -Hindustan Times

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Hong Kong’s Electricity Provider to Invest $2 Billion to Boost India Capacity

CLP Holdings to set up 2,000MW power plant in Gujarat, two years after India exit threat

BY MAULIK PATHAK & UTPAL BHASKAR GANDHINAGAR/NEW DELHI: CLP Holdings Ltd, Hong Kong’s biggest electricity provider will invest around $2 billion to boost its power production capacity in India by 2,000 megawatts (MW), resolving to put additional resources in the country some two years after threatening to exit it because of erratic fuel supplies to its plants. “We have decided to set up a 2,000MW power plant at Paguthan (in Gujarat’s Bharuch district) and we aim to invest about $2 billion for this,” said CLP Holdings chief executive officer (CEO) Richard Lancaster, who was in Gandhinagar to attend a global CEO conclave as part of the ongoing Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit. The Wall Street Journal had reported on 19 December 2012 that CLP Holdings had written to then prime minister Manmohan Singh that it may be forced to “reconsider” its projects in India as it was “bleeding every day because of a fuel shortage, infrastructure bottlenecks and lack of policy initiatives to support growth.” CLP Holdings’ newfound enthusiasm may be partly to do with the favourable economic sentiment prevailing in the country after the business-friendly Narendra Modi government took charge in May. Asked if there has been a shift in

CEO Richard Lancaster says CLP is also keen on setting up solar projects in India.

investors’ confidence due to a change in government at the centre, Lancaster said that there have been ups and downs. “But we have a commitment towards India. We see rewards in the future,” Lancaster added. For the Modi government, the fuel supply shortage and its effect on power production are among issues that need its most urgent attention. Growth in coal production has failed to keep pace with demand—the power sector consumes nearly 78% of domestic output. Many gas-based plants are idling because of declining production from Reliance Industries Ltd’s D6 block in the Krishna-Godavari basin, the country’s largest reservoir

of the fuel. The government is trying to rekindle waning interest in India’s hydrocarbon sector. Of India’s installed power generation capacity of 255,012.79MW, power projects totalling 153,570.89MW are fuelled by coal and a capacity of 22,971.25 MW is gas-based. “The Paguthan plant is near its peaking point. The power unit had a plant load factor (PLF) of 75%, but it has come down to single digits in the last 18 months. Availability of gas has been a problem in India. We believe in clean coal-fired technology and we have a lot of space for expansion at the location,” Lancaster said. “We are also keen on setting up solar projects in the country and are look-

ing into this.” The Bharatiya Janata Party government has substantially raised an earlier solar energy target of achieving 20,000MW capacity by 2022 to 100,000MW. It has also articulated a blueprint for energy security that guarantees adequate supply of power at affordable prices. India has been hard-pressed to generate enough power to keep its economic engine chugging, and at a price that makes its manufacturing competitive. “The country is craving for energy security and energy at affordable prices. India will be self-sufficient in energy,” Piyush Goyal, minister for power, coal and new and renewable energy, had said. CLP Holdings’original plan was to add another 655MW unit at Paguthan, but a shortage in gas supply had led it to reconsider the plans for India. CLP has also installed 1,000MW of wind power projects in the country. Asked about tying up fuel

resources, Lancaster said a feasibility study was on and that they would soon finalize it. Mint reported on 11 February 2013 about CLP India Pvt. Ltd considering an impairment on its books due to risks arising from erratic fuel supplies to its 1,320MW Jhajjar project in Haryana. Impairment is an accounting practice in which a company decides to write down the value of an asset. CLP Holdings, founded in 1901 as China Light and Power Co. Ltd in Hong Kong, was among the two significant overseas entrants in India’s power generation sector along with US-based AES Corp. While AES decided to wind up most of its operations here, while retaining a stake it owns in Orissa Power Generation Corp. Ltd, CLP’s impairment consideration stemmed from the low PLF at the Rs.6,000 crore Jhajjar project. -livemint.com

World Bank Projects 6.4% Economic Growth in India in 2015 GANDHINAGAR: Indian economy is likely to grow at 6.4 per cent in 2015 and accelerate further in the next year on the back of steps being taken by the Narendra Modi-led NDA government, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said today.

Speaking at the Vibrant Gujarat summit here, he said the World Bank was committed to catalysing a vibrant India and there is much reason for optimism. “We project that India will be a bright spot in an otherwise medium

global economic outlook. (The) economy according to our projections is expected to grow 6.4 per cent this year and even faster in 2016,” he said. -Times of India

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26 January 16, 2015 Old Headache: No Support from Indian Bowlers BY SIDHARTH MONGA SYDNEY (ESPN Cricinfo): India’s top half averaged 52.57 per wicket to Australia’s 51.45 this series. Four Indian batsmen scored at least one century to Australia’s three. M Vijay left alone 234 balls, which is better than the next two put together: 230, between Steven Smith and Chris Rogers. No Indian batsmen other than Virat Kohli had played a Test in Australia before the series began. The Australian batsmen have been playing here all their lives. By all accounts India batsmen matched Australia in the batting department. Yet it all came down to India’s batting collapses and a bad session each in every Test. In Adelaide and Brisbane the bad sessions were horrible. In Melbourne and Sydney India managed to arrest those bad sessions. They lost Adelaide and Brisbane, and drew Melbourne and Sydney. To say that those sessions was where the Tests were lost or saved would a be a tad harsh on the batsmen. It is a fair criticism that India should have batted Australia out in Brisbane and Melbourne after the starts they got, but sometimes the batting can do with some support. Australia got that support, India didn’t. It can be argued that India were hurt more by their inept bowling on second day in Adelaide than the collapse on the final day. Same with letting Mitchell Johnson score all those runs before the batting came undone on the final day in Brisbane. Had India lost Melbourne it would be down in same measure to the poor bowling against Brad Haddin as the folding up that was avoided on the final evening. In Sydney, India should never have had to bat out 90 overs; it was only thanks to 251 conceded on the fourth day. The Indian hierarchy tried to talk up the bowlers before the start of the series, defended them through it, but the end of it they knew they had been let down again. Kohli, who has promised aggressiveness taking over as captain from the much-maligned MS Dhoni, has begun to realise the problems Dhoni faced.

Ishant Sharma loses his footing after delivering the ball, Australia v India, 3rd Test, Melbourne, 4th day, December 29, 2014.

“The reason we have done well at home is we have taken 20 wickets,” Kohli said. “The spinners have bowled really well. The fast bowlers know how to bowl in home conditions with reverseswing. They have a fair idea of the areas they have to bowl in. But when we come out, they get too excited with the bounce. Actually we need to figure out which are the best areas to bowl to each batsman and work on those areas. “You run up to bowl and you can pitch six balls on the same spot. Only then can you set the right fields as the captain to set up a batsman and get him out. The consistency bit is something we really need to work on.” Lack of experience cannot be an excuse. Kohli saw Josh Hazlewood make his debut and know right away how to take Test wicket. “Certainly a lot to learn from the Australian bowlers,” Kohli said. “Especially someone like Josh Hazlewood who is playing his first few matches. He put the ball in the right spots in all three matches. That’s something we need to learn big time if we want to win Test matches. Eventually

you have to take 20 wickets to win a Test match. That’s how simple and plain it is.” If Hazlewood knows what to do, why can’t India’s bowlers maintain any sort of pressure? Is it a lack of skills, fitness, or poor plans? Kohli’s answer was instructive. Possibly he hasn’t seen the same amount of effort in the bowlers’ later spells. “It might be a mixture of a lot of things,” Kohli said. “The skill is there. If it wasn’t, they wouldn’t be playing for India. That’s a given. You need composure and character to go out there and say, ‘I’m tired, but I need to take two wickets for my team, so I need to bowl at the same pace as my first spell.’ “That’s where character counts. When you’re tired and you’re down and your team expects you to step up. That’s something we’ve not been able to do in the last couple of years. At Lord’s Ishant did it for us. We need guys stepping up with more performances like that to win Test matches. Those crucial moments after tea, at the end of a day’s play, we need to strike and we haven’t been able to. It’s to do with wanting to bowl that second

and third spell for the team, and that’s something we need to consistently work on, tell the guys to step up and bowl their hearts out for the team eventually.” With what Kohli says, though, you get the impression he is less likely to change his captaincy style to suit ordinary bowling - something Dhoni did - than trying to force the attitude of the bowlers towards Test bowling. There are encouraging signs in what Kohli says. “The main criteria now would be to scout guys who we feel - along with these fast bowlers - have the potential to play in the future, and groom them and nurture them and monitor their fitness, their consistency and their skills. That’s how we want to develop our Test team, and that’s something we really want to do going ahead in the future.” Now begins the tussle. How long before the India bowlers break another captain down? Or will this captain’s ambition be able to bring about a paradigm shift? Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo.

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Javeria Khan Leads Pak Women vs SL SHARJAH: Pakistan Women 245 for 3 (Javeria 133, Mir 51*) beat Sri Lanka Women 242 for 5 (Atapattu 99, Mir 2-35) by seven wickets Javeria Khan’s maiden ODI century was the catalyst for Pakistan women completing their highest chase in ODI history. An unbeaten 133 off 141 balls helped hunt down the target of 243 with 16 balls and seven wickets to spare in Sharjah to complete a series whitewash. She sounded intent with a couple of fours in the fourth over, and was aggressive in collecting singles and twos when the boundaries were sparse. The required run-rate was never allowed to breach five in the first 18 overs despite the loss of opener Marina Iqbal. And when it tipped to 5.17, Javeria struck twin fours in the 22nd over to bring up her fifty in 64 balls and take control again. Then came a middle-order wobble when Shashikala Siriwardene took two wickets in successive overs, including Bismah Maroof who had been party to a 65-run secondwicket stand with Javeria. Pakistan were 118 for 3, with another 125 needed in the remaining 144 balls. Out walked captain Sana Mir, who struck a brisk halfcentury, and ended Sri Lanka’s hopes of a fightback. Javeria had begun their eventually unbeaten 127-run partnership with two fours in two overs and together they managed to keep a potentially tricky asking-rate in check. Fittingly, Javeria sealed the chase with her 12th four.

Javeria Khan struck her first ODI century.

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