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Friday, March 23, 2018 • Vol. 37, No. 12

Indo American News READ US ONLINE at www.indoamerican-news.com | Published weekly from Houston, Texas. USA 7457 Harwin Dr, Suite 262, Houston, TX 77036 • PH: 713 789 6397 • Fax: 713 789 6399 • indoamericannews@yahoo.com

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A Unique & Versatile Talent Competition P20




Celebrating Culture!

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March 23, 2018


Have Talent, Will Win! Talaash, Ek Hunar Ki Khoj, Your Next Milestone!



“Your talent is God’s gift to you. What you do with it is your gift back to God”-Leo Buscaglia. America is not only a land of dreams; it is also home to some breathtaking talent, and even hidden talents. These may range from creativity to athletic abilities and beyond, and while we all have them we may not always be good at identifying and cultivating them. Talent shows have become a prominent genre of reality television and they are significant in catapulting some amateur artists to recognition and commercially triumphant careers. Talaash, Ek hunar ki khoj, a talent show that is the brainchild of Amir Dodhiya, is one such platform for the South-Asian community and a very unique concept in that sense. The finale of this unique and versatile talent competition was held in the Stafford Performing Arts Centre, on March 11. Amir Dodhiya, a prominent figure in the greater Houston area is a philanthropist and he actively supports various non-profit organizations. A resident of Sugar Land for close to two decades, Amir has been with New York Life since 2008. He, along with HD & D Events has been working on this novel idea over the last one and a half years. The show invited talent across various genres

and age groups. A marvelous treat was to witness artists right from 6 years to 77 years of age. The artists or stars, as we may refer to them, showcased their X-factors; right from their music and dancing skills to singing, acting, blindfolds acts, magic, painting, sculpt-

ing and everything in and around it. The auditions for this magnificent show began from January 21, and were held at the India House in Houston and Asian American Resource Centre in Austin, across various dates. After the highly competitive round of auditions,

33 brilliant contestants were shortlisted for the finales and this was undoubtedly the most difficult task for the esteemed judges. Tickets to the highly anticipated finale were sold out 4 days prior to the D-Day. The finale kicked off with a bang, literally, to a splendid LED light dance performance by a professional entertainment group that has the accolades of performing in mega-shows like So You Think You Can Dance and Americas Got Talent. A remark-

able performance on the famous song Ghoomer by Virtuosi of Performing Arts followed this. The talented duo Shruthi Bekal and Pragya Sen played the perfect Emcee’s for the evening, and welcomed the eminent judges- Pooja Batra, Corey Greene, Pandit Suman Ghosh, Curt Miller, Nagavalli Medicharla and Sebastien Boileau. In true sense, this was the definition of versatility, where the judges ranged from a Bollywood star to a




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March 23, 2018


Holi 2K18 Mela - The Experience, by Radio Dabang and ISSO

Photos: Keith Talison & Meedu Photography

HOUSTON: Radio Dabang and

ISSO held their 1st successful Holi 2K18 Mela - The Experience on March 18, from 1pm - 7pm at the I.S.S.O Temple Grounds presented by Zee TV, Discount Power and Turkish Airlines with top bollywood Star Abhay Deol and Winner of Zee Sa Re Ga Ma Pa 2016 Jyotica Tangri. According to a popular legend, the word Holi is derived from the demoness, Holika. She was the sister of Hiranya Kashipu, a demon king, who having defeated the gods, proclaimed his supremacy over everyone else in the Universe. Enraged over his son Prahlad’s ardent devotion to Lord Vishnu, Hiranya Kashipu decides to punish him with the help of his sister, Holika, who is immune to any damage from fire. Holika carries the small boy Prahlad into the fire but a divine intervention destroys her and saves Prahlad from getting burned. Thus Holi is celebrated to mark the burning of the

evil Holika. The event was organized by Radio Dabang 105.3 FM Radio, with support from non-profit community organization like I.S.S.O and Gujarati Samaj of Houston.”I loved the Shuttle Service as i was dropped off to the event venue in 10 minutes “ said Shree Madan owner of Radisson Businss Group who also printed the custom Holi 2K18 themed shirts. Weather was perfect, on the last day of spring break. This was a safe, family friendly event. People dressed up in the traditional white color clothing ready to play Holi with all colors. Over 6000 people of different colors, backgrounds, languages, and religions united as one and raised arms to Indian and International music. It was a surreal experience for all ages and everyone went crazy as the event unfolded in a good way. Highlights of the event included

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a Ceremonial Diya Lighting by Rj’s Guddi and Biraj who opened the stage thanking the Good Lord Ganesha before starting the event while the track for ‘Shree Siddhivinayak Mantra And Aarti’ featuring Amitabh Bachcha’s voice from the movie Sarkar 3 played in the background, all day Color Throwing, Live Video Mixing and music by Dj Dholi Deep for non stop 5 hours, RJ Arshi Managed the acts

and dances, the only Holi Mela in Houston to feature Three Full Size Daylight LED Screen back drop wall with custom designed graphics by Tariq U Khan, son of Moid Khan of Radio Dabang 105.3 FM, a grand 20 by 32 feet stage and over 50,000 watts of sound output by Dj Sage Productions, Aling’s Chinese Foam Dance Party, Cultural Performances by Himi Haridas of H- Town Divas, Anju Group who

also had henna tattoo design booth and applied henna for Jyotica and RJ Rashmi a day before the event, Fusion dance by Diya sisters, Khusboo Dance Group made the crowds ga ga over ghoomer, U.S. Desi Girls performed a malayali dance, Story of Holi portrayed magnificently by Bharatdarshana School of performing arts in their

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COMMUNITY First IACCGH’s Women Mean Business Series of 2018 March 23, 2018

From left: Ashok Garg, President Swapan Dhairyawan, Event Chair Joya Shukla, Shell representative and Board Member Alyssa Holmes-Henderson, Sunanda Nair, Rathna Kumar, and Executive Director Jagdip Ahluwalia. Photos: Nandeep Mehta


HOUSTON: The Indo American

Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston commenced the first ‘IACCGH Women Mean Business’ series of the year on Thursday, March 15 at the DoubleTree by Hilton at Greenway. The event was sponsored by Shell Oil Company, the main sponsors for the IACCGH Women Mean Business

series since 2013. President Swapan Dhairyawan and Event Chair Joya Shukla, Past President IACCGH, welcomed the guests and the two distinguished keynote speakers of the night; Rathna Kumar, Artistic Director Samskriti and Sunanda Nair, Founder Director Sunanda Performing Arts Center. The theme of the night was a unique combination of culture and business, as these two esteemed art

dignitaries shared how they were able to spread their love and appreciation for dance into a highly successful business and non-profit venture. Rathna Kumar began her speech by emphasizing the need to have a strong and intrinsic desire to make a mark as an essential component to success. She highlighted various examples from her life; beginning with giving individual performances to finally opening Samskriti.

Rathna Kumar (left), Artistic Director Samskriti, and Sunanda Nair, Founder Director Sunanda Performing Arts Center.

“Tenacity and readiness to learn new lessons and put in long hours of hard work” was her mantra in achieving the level of success she deservingly holds. Sunanda Nair also emphasized that motivation and a complete trust to both guru and the art, is an essential key. She also gave excerpts from her life; from being the first person to earn a Ph.D in Mohiniattam, to the struggle in adapting to a whole new country when she moved to America. She

credited her success in opening her art school to the endless support and confidence she had received. “Make best of every minute because it isn’t coming back” is the motto she abides by in all her endeavors. Shell representative and Board Member Alyssa Holmes-Henderson gave the vote of thanks and presented certificates and gifts to the speakers. Darshak Thacker of Krishna Sounds provided live sound for the event.


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March 23, 2018

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On Saturday, March 3, the Youth Leadership Development Program of Houston convened in India House and listened in awe as Bhavesh Patel, CEO of one of the largest plastics, chemicals, and refining companies in the world, LyondellBasell, recounted his path to success in the business world. Patel eloquently and selflessly shared with us the knowledge and insight gained from decades of experience in business management, allowing us to use these insights not only in our future careers, but throughout our entire lives. The first of Patel’s many valuable lessons was that of having a strong foundation and support system. He described how, despite

March 23, 2018


Leadership: Take One for the Team

YLDP Houston students with Bhavesh Patel, CEO LyondellBasell.

Bhavesh Patel, CEO LyondellBasell

growing up in a household tight on money, it was his family’s support that allowed him to attend university and earn his degree. This prompted many of us to consider our own support systems, and created in us a new appreciation for what we currently have. Patel then emphasized the importance of ethical business practices, describing how he earned his position at Chevron by being straightforward during his interview and not deceiving his employers as to his goals. He went on to revolutionize

the company for the next 20 years, even guiding them through the 2008 recession. This lesson stood out to us highly, as it not only exemplified ethics in a world increasingly full of the opposite, but also showed to us the importance of grit and perseverance. Through this, Patel effectively inspired us to be our best selves going forth into our future careers. Perhaps Patel’s most important lesson to us, however, was the importance of the team. When tasked with restructuring LyondellBasell,

Patel focused entirely on doing what would most benefit the entire company, even at potential risk to him. Within a few years LyondellBasell was prospering like never before. This, he emphasized to us, was the most important aspect of leadership. To put the team before ourselves, to focus on the group instead of the individual, was the key to being a successful manager. Upon discussing this within our groups, we all agreed that this would most influence our leader-

ship decisions in our future careers. With this, Patel had inspired us to be better, most compassionate people, and we were eager to get started. In short, Bhavresh Patel’s presentation was captivatingly informative, and the privilege of hearing him is one that none of us have taken for granted. By sharing with us his knowledge of leadership, Patel has truly helped to create a future of strong, effective leaders like himself.


10 March 23, 2018



March 23, 2018

Sanjay Stefan Malhotra Weds Alexandra Jane Shepherd


Pradeep Sulhan, P.C.

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Over 25 years experience Stefan Malhotra and Alexandra Shepherd before their wedding in Fingask Castle, Scotland The groom’s father Jawahar Malhotra (right) and Stefan’s brother Jeremy and his wife Kathryn with the newlyweds (on left) and his cousin Meena Murphy, husband Dan and kids Shashi Nila and Shiva.

The Shepherd family with the bride and groom.

The newlyweds with the French side of Stefan’s family with grandmother Edith Giacchetti and mother Dr. Claudine Giacchetti to his left.



CASTLE, SCOTLAND: You never know when you might finally meet a person whom you may have had a chance encounter with. After they actually met seven years later, Stefan Malhotra and Alexandra Shepherd realized that they had been in the same chemistry class in their undergraduate days at the University of Texas in Austin in 2003. But, as Stefan poked a pun at it, there was no chemistry between them then! That changed in 2009 when they were both in the same graduate program at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston and Alexandra – or Alex as she more commonly goes by caught Stefan’s eye. At first, he recalls being a little intimidated by the professional student that Alex was, going around town with her adorable dog Bailey in her little Nissan. They would meet at gath-

erings and parties and Stefan remembers being at each of them. He never let on that he was getting fond of her, until he confided in Alex’s twin sister Katie, who didn’t keep the secret too long. Soon a first date followed and sometime later they moved in together. Almost a year ago, in February 2017, Stefan proposed to Alex on the top of the Lost Mine Trail in Big Bend National Park in Texas. The two then started planning their wedding and settled on a locale near Dundee in Scotland where Alex’s family is originally from. They had visited Fingask Castle in Rait, 30 minutes northwest of the city and fell in love with the setting and the venue for a reception on the grounds. It helped that Alex’s mother Frances lives in Dundee and could oversee some of the arrangements and the couple made a few trips to Dundee to meet with the wedding planners. The two were finally married in

Fingask Castle on Saturday, March 10, 2018 with Jane Bechtel, a Celebrant from the Humanist Society of Scotland officiating over a nonreligious, secular ceremony that reflected how Stefan and Alex view life. As Bechtel explained during the ceremony, Humanists are guided by reason, inspired by compassion and informed by the experience of Life. Bechtel remembered dear members of the families who had passed away before and Stefan’s dear grandmother mamaji who had to cancel at the last minute due to health problems and her eldest son Dr. Jayant Malhotra of Chicago who stayed behind to be with her; Alex’s sister Rebecca recited a poem and Stefan’s brother Jeremy read a poem in French and then translated it into English. The couple then recited the vows that they had written. The couple drank a dram from a two-handed silver Quaich, a Scottish wedding tradition for good luck; while two figurines of Ganesh, the Hindu God of Good Luck looked down on them from the mantelpiece. They went through an abbreviated Hindu Vivah ceremony, lighting diyas at the table where they sat and signed the formal marriage certificates required by Scottish law. After the wedding, they spent a week-long honeymoon in Iceland. Sanjay Stefan Malhotra, 34, was born and raised in Houston and is a Health Safety and Environment engineer with EDP Renewables, a Portuguese company involved CONTINUED ON PAGE 12


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12 March 23, 2018 Sanjay Stefan Malhotra Weds Alexandra Jane Shepherd CONTINUED FROM PAGE 11 in windfarm energy production. He received his Bachelors in Biology from the University of Texas in Austin in 2005 and a Masters in Public Health from the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston in 2011. He is the son of Jawahar Malhotra, a consulting engineer and Publisher of Indo American News and Dr. Claudine Giacchetti, a Professor of French Literature at the University of Houston, Main campus. His younger brother Jeremy was married in Washington DC last October 2017. Alexandra Jane Moncrieff Shepherd, also 34, was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas and is a dentist working in a group practice in Houston. She also received her Bachelors in Biology from the University of Texas in Austin in 2005 and a Masters in Public Health from the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston in 2012, from where she also

received her DDS in 2015. She is the daughter of Dr. Alexander “Sandy” Shepherd, an internist, of San Antonio and Frances Shepherd of Dundee. She has four other sisters, two who live in the UK, one in Washington DC and another in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. After the wedding, the reception was held in a pavilion on the grounds of the castle where the appetizers and dinner was a fusion of Indian – samosas, lamb chops, butter chicken masala and naan – and Scottish fare – rare broiled lamb, haggis pakoras and green spinach, among other dishes. A Highlander bagpiper performed before the reception. The wedding guests – 30 members of the French family flew in from France, a contingent from Texas and the US and the Scottish clan and friends - danced the night away to the live Scottish band Clannish whose performers – singer Aimee, Maeve on fiddle, Ben on drums, John on bass guitar, Ali on guitar and voice – were excellent in the list of pop songs and Celtic music they delivered.

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Children’s India Culture Fest with Quiz, Art & Storytelling Competitions

MANVEL, TX: An Indian Cul-

ture Festival with a number of fun competitions will be held on Saturday April 7, 2018 at Rogers Middle School, 3121 Manvel Rd, Pearland TX 77584, from 1 to 6 pm. The event is open to all and festival entry is free. Titled “Puranava – From the Ancient to the New” and presented by non-profit Global Organization for Divinity, the event will give adults and children alike, a glimpse into India’s regional diversity and colorful culture. In Sanskrit, “Pura” means old and “Nava” means new. So the term Pura-Nava signifies and encompasses both India’s rich, ancient history and its more recent contributions to global development. As part of this festival, unique PuraNava Quiz and Art competitions will be held for children and youth of all ages, with exciting cash prizes and awards for the winners and gifts for all participants. The quiz competition is a way for children of both Indian heritage as well as other cultural backgrounds to learn more about India and its global contribution. The Quiz Competition will be in three age categories – Grades K-4 (Individual), Grades 5-8 (Team of

Two) and High school & College undergrads (Team of Two). For quiz competition topics, guidelines and registration, visit www. tinyurl.com/puranava2018. For each age group, there will first be a written preliminary round, with the top few participants moving to the finals. An Art competition will also be held for participants of all ages, including adults. This will feature competitions in the Art of Storytelling, Coloring/Drawing/ Painting on paper and canvas, Doodling, Digital Art and Rangoli (for adults). For art competition themes, guidelines and registration, visit www.tinyurl.com/ artpuranava2018. Apart from the competitions, the Culture Fest will have exhibits from different regions of India,

puppet shows, kids art and craft stations, henna and face painting, traditional Indian games, booths to try out Indian traditional wear and Indian languages, photo booths, vendors selling exquisite Indian clothes, jewelry and more. Visitors can also get to taste unique regional Indian foods, including many that are not commonly available in Indian restaurants. There will also be dance performances by children, showcasing India’s varied performing arts. This project is supported by a City of Pearland Cultural Arts Grant program from the City of Pearland Convention & Visitors Bureau. For more information and booth/vendor sponsorships, please call 281-402-6585 or email houston.god@godivinity.org.


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16 March 23, 2018


Have Talent, Will Win! Talaash, Ek Hunar Ki Khoj, Your Next Milestone! CONTINUED FROM PAGE 3 singer and composer, a dancer, a magician and a graffiti artist. The Grand Prize ($2500) winner was the super-talented duo- Sahana & Deeya from New York Dance Group, who performed to an incredible Bharatnatyam dance. While this prize was sponsored by Amir Dodhiya & the Presenting Sponsor of the show Discount Power, the Grand Prize winners also get an opportunity to train and perform with Virtuosi of Performing Arts by Keka Kar, a local art company that produces several shows a year. The first runner up ($1000) winner was the talented Janki Prajapati from Infused Performing Arts who did a Bollywood dance and Mousumi Banerjee sponsored the prize. The second runner up ($500) winner award went to the super magician,

Holi 2K18 Mela


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CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5 dance production “Holika Dahan” . Rj’s Rashmi and Farhan entertained the crowds in between each dance school cracking jokes and interacting with the public with contests and giveaways, Music Festival featuring Live Bollywood Singer Jyotica Tangri - winner of Zee TV Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Show all attendees swooned to her velvety voice on tracks such as “Pallo Latke, Maiyaa Maiyaa, Baby Doll” and many more, and the amazing appearance of No.1 Super star Bollywood Actor Abhay Deol who stepped down from the stage to interact with the crowd and honouring the sponsors with Marble and gold plated plaques followed by “Drinks with Dabang” based on Koffee with Karan Theme where the Rj’s asked Abhay Deol 1 question each and he answered them truthfully with no political filter, last but not the least was the Battle of the Dj’ s which was won by DJ Dholi Tamim. The herbal color powder is skinsafe and was provided along with Pichkari’s at a nominal cost by Gujrati Samaj of Houston. Veenu Gaba and her team from AIG volunteered and worked very hard to help make the event successful. Lots of free giveaways, Pakola drinks and packets of Cookies by Wahid Lala of Famous foods, Juices & Discount Power T-shirts by Discount Power, Tea by Rahim Dharas of Tea India, Custom Toyota T-Shirts by Farhaan of Sterling Mccall Toyota who also had their Toyotas on display at the venue, Raffle Drawing worth $500 with

Ashik Jayprakash, whose tricks left the audiences mesmerized. This prize was sponsored by Desiwindow.com. Being lauded and celebrated by the esteemed judges in a significant and memorable event like this itself is noteworthy. Amir Dodhiya came up on stage to thank all the sponsors. The intent of the organizers of this mega-show was genuinely noble and 50% of ticket sales that accounted to $5000, along with $1400 that was raised at the live auction were donated to Sewa International. Pooja Batra presented the check to Sewa International’s President Gitesh Desai and Achalesh Amar. In a conversation with Amir Dodhiya he stated, “I sincerely feel that this was a great and a successful event, managed very well at this large scale. I want to deeply thank

my core team- Rishabh Nayak, Vinay Goel, Umang Mehta, Rajesh Desai, Mousumi Banerjee, Bud Patel, Daksha Nagar, Shruti Bekal, DJ Sage & Abiya Malhotra of Sage Productions, Kishore Ramraju, and Damodhara Jammli. Without my team, the show would not have been possible. It was a large-scale event with investments that ran into thousands of dollars. We have learnt a lot from this exciting journey and we plan to do a fantastic event next year as well”. The sound was managed by Rishabh Nayak and the lightings, LED and graphics by Sage Productions, Videography by Chhaya Photo Studio and Photography by Vinay Goel. Stay tuned for further details and visit www.talaashusa.com

cool prizes like Amazon gift cards and Drones, kids face painting and Free kids rides like Dunk tank, giant 40 feet inflatable slide and Mickey Mouse adventure Fun house sponsored by Omar Saeed agent of Northwestern Mutual, Foam Dance party sponsored by Aling’s Chinese. Irfan Motiwala and Gary Yan as always came out to support the community while also thanking them while they are growing and a bigger Alings Chinese Restaurant is being built in Telfair. Fortbend Democratic Party was also present to support the event with Judge Juli Mathews and her team and Sri Preston Kulkarni also popped in to surpise everyone. Gangaraj and Rakesh Jain, Bawa Jewelers and most local advertisers came to support Radio Dabang as well. Dance Party with DJ Dholi Deep spinning Bollywood, EDM finishing with Battle of the Dj’s lasted all day and crowds were not ready to leave when they had to stop at 7pm. The VIP Experience had a special tent with Tables and chairs for VIP’s with free food sponsored by Bollywood Chowpatty Chat and drinks with all access backstage passes, free t-shirts and VIP parking. Chef Nirmaan Shah of Nirmanz Food Boutique also attended with his wife and was excited when they got to take pictures with Abhay Deol. Megha Ozharkar, former president of Houston Maharastra Mandal quoted “ Excellent Event with great organization and my son truly enjoyed everything”. A wide variety of vegetarian no onion and garlic yet very delicious fresh-cooked street food fragrance

filled the area quickly making everyone hungry and was managed by Bombay Pizza Express and Universal Bakery serving both north and south indian delicacies along with chat items, Universal Bakery also went out of their way to prepare a fresh 4 pound Black Forest cake - the same kind you get at Monginis in Mumbai ( a must try treat ) to celebrate Abhay Deol’s birthday which was March 15, as a surprise for him. There was one more surprise for Abhay Deol and Radio Dabang when Scott and Jan Taylor of Revitalized communities presented a certificate from the office of Congresswoman Shiela Jackson Lee honouring their achievements and the philantrophic work done for the community. While over 2500 parking spots at 5 different parking lots relieved some of the traffic on Synott Road with Shuttles run by Buland Patel and his crew got people into the event much faster, still many insisted on waiting in line outside the venue’s limited legal 250 parking spots which again were full near 3 pm, and still others parked in illegal spots along the Ashtalaxmi Temple jeopardizing the fragile permissions generously granted by Fortbend County to host this unique event at the I.S.S.O Temple grounds. Radio Dabang 105.3 FM Moid Khan and Irfan Moosa and I.S.S.O team Ilesh, Buland and Bimal thanks all the sponsors for their generosity, over 50 volunteers, and the Dabang team Senior management crew Devangi Shah, Tariq U Khan, Sandeep Sulhan, Junior event manager Biraj Bhrambhatt, Radio Dabang Jockeys Rashmi, Farhan, Arshi, Tanu for their First amazing super successful HOLI 2K18! What’s Next? Radio Dabang 105.3 FM is scouting for venues that can support over 10,000 people for its next large event. For details stay tuned to Radio Dabang 105.3 FM.

For advertising in Indo-American News Contact:

Vanshika Vipin Varma

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March 23, 2018


NASA Honors Dr. Kamlesh Lulla for Thirty Years of Distinguished Service at Johnson Space Center

HOUSTON: On March 2, NASAhonored Dr.

Kamlesh Lulla for his 30 years of distinguished servcie in a ceremony attended by his family and friends. This is a major milestone in Dr. Lulla’s successful career at NASA where he is a senior leader, senior researcher and chief scientist and currently the director for research and technology collaboration with academia. Dr. Lulla is a senior leader who has dedicated his professional life towards space exploration, science and technology research and innovations. Dr. Lulla’s distinguished career at NASA spans 30 years where he has served as the Chief Scientist for Earth Observation for Space Shuttle and International Space Station programs and directed the training of NASA Astronauts in Earth Observation Sciences and Earth Science payloads. Dr. Lulla’s scientific research involved optical and radar remote sensing, advanced sensor development and image and data processing technologies. His senior management positions include Director for University Research and Technology collaborations division and as Branch chief for Flight Science branch and Earth Science division at NASA Johnson Space center. Dr. Lulla holds two Ph.D. degrees with expertise in Space sciences and technologies in operational and research activities at NASA. He has served in academia as a tenured university professor and director of multidisciplinary research center for Space Remote Sensing and geospatial sciences for over fifteen years before joining NASA. Dr. Lulla is a widely published author. He has coauthored or edited eight books and authored a large number of research and technical papers in prestigious journals. He is also the Chief Editor of a major international journal in Earth and Space science and Remote Sensing that is has circulation in more than 85 countries. Dr. Lulla also served as an Editor of American Journal of Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing. Dr. Lulla received three of the highest NASA honors and Medals-- the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal for his scientific research accomplishments and the NASA Exceptional Service Medal and Astronaut Ellison Onizuka Award for Space Technology. President of India honored him with Pravasi Bhartiya Samman Medal. Dr. Lulla has received numerous other awards from NASA, the U.S. Government and various universities, cultural organizations and associations. Dr. Lulla has received several awards from professional societies such as the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), American Society of Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) and Association of American Geospatial Technology.

Dr Kamlesh Lulla receiving the award from Center Director Dr. Dr Lulla with his wife Marianne Lulla and Center Director Ellen Ochoa. Dr. Ellen Ochoa.


18 March 23, 2018 P

EDITORIAL/COMMENTARY No Cool US Aid for Terroristan?

Managing Microplastics

lastics are now widely present in the environment, as visible waste along coastlines, in lakes and rivers, and even in the soil. The recent finding that microplastic particles are found even in ‘safe’ bottled water indicates the magnitude of the crisis. There is little doubt that the global production of plastics, at over 300 million tonnes a year according to the UN Environment Programme, has overwhelmed the capacity of governments to handle what is thrown away as waste Microplastics are particles of less than 5 mm that enter the environment either as primary industrial products, such as those used in scrubbers and cosmetics, or via urban waste water and broken-down elements of articles discarded by consumers. Washing of clothes releases synthetic microfibres into water bodies and the sea. The health impact of the presence of polypropylene, polyethylene terephthalate and other chemicals in drinking water, food and even inhaled air may not yet be clear, but indisputably these are contaminants. Research evidence from complementary fields indicates that accumulation of these chemicals can induce or aggravate immune responses in the body. More studies, as a globally coordinated effort, are necessary to assess the impact on health. It is heartening that the WHO has come forward to commission a review of the health impact of plastics in water. Last December in Nairobi, UN member-countries resolved to produce a binding agreement in 18 months to deal with the release of plastics into the marine environment. The problem is staggering: eight million tonnes of waste, including bottles and packaging, make their way into the sea each year. There is now even the Great Pacific Garbage Patch of plastic debris. India has a major problem dealing with plastics, particularly single-use shopping bags that reach dumping sites, rivers and wetlands along with other waste. The most efficient way to deal with the pollution is to control the production and distribution of plastics. Banning singleuse bags and making consumers pay a significant amount for the more durable ones is a feasible solution. Enforcing the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016, which require segregation of waste from April 8 this year, will retrieve materials and greatly reduce the burden on the environment. Waste separation can be achieved in partnership with the community, and presents a major employment opportunity. The goal, however, has to be long term. As the European Union’s vision 2030 document on creating a circular plastic economy explains, the answer lies in changing the very nature of plastics, from cheap and disposable to durable, reusable and fully recyclable. There is consensus that this is the way forward. Now that the presence of plastics in drinking water, including the bottled variety, has been documented, governments should realise it cannot be business as usual. -- The Hindu



he White House is sticking to its tough policy on Pakistan as of now. That means US security assistance worth $1.4 billion remains suspended and diplomatic pressure will continue in various international fora and through anti-terrorism instruments. That was the message from both Vice-President Mike Pence and a senior administration official last week. Pakistan must take decisive action against terrorists, their nurseries, and bring the Taliban to the peace table if it wants normalisation. Pence told Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, who was on a private visit and sought a meeting, that his government had to “do more” to evict terrorist groups. In the background hung the threat of unilateral action. If there is a sense that pressure is being relieved, perish the thought. The senior administration official went to great lengths to stress the White House was unwavering. “We have got their attention. We believe we need to continue that pressure. At the same time indicate that there is a way forward,” the official said. “Pakistan has done the bare minimum to appear responsive to our requests. When provided very specific information, they have responded. But we have not seen them take proactive steps.” While the White House language was sharp, statements from other senior officials, including Secretary of Defence James Mattis and Central Command Chief Gen Joseph Votel, have been more conciliatory. Mattis noted “changes in Pakistan’s behaviour”, citing the fatwa against suicide bombings as an example and Votel talked of “positive indicators” but also linked the recent surge in Taliban attacks to sanctuaries. Some have seen this as a “softening” that it is not. At least not yet. But US generals should not fall into the same “hope trap” as their predecessors that Pakistan is about to do the right thing. It’s true that the Pentagon doesn’t want to sever the military-to-military relationship, but in a few days, watch the same generals walk the soft

US Vice President Mike Pence has told Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shahid Khaqani Abbasi that his country “must do more” against Taliban and other terror groups.

Pakistan knows it could lose more than a billion dollars in US aid unless the White House re-programmes it before end of the fiscal year. The big question: would Trump allow the funds to lapse? words back or Gen John Nicholson, the US Commander in Afghanistan, tell home truths about the Pakistan army’s terrorist squads. Every comment doesn’t reflect a policy change. The overall trend is clear and the Pakistanis know it despite their bluster about enjoying Chinese protection. That protection costs a lot more as Rawalpindi is well aware. Here are some key facts: the Trump Administration has given no substantive concession to Pakistan as of now. Nada. Zilch. The grey listing of Pakistan went through in the Financial Action Task Force and black listing is a possibility. President Donald Trump has neither met nor talked to a Pakistani leader sincehis inauguration. This makes Pakistan the only relatively significant country whose leader he hasn’t interacted with. He ignored Nawaz Sharif at the summit in Saudi Arabia last summer. Pakistan’s access is limited to the Vice-President. Abbasi got a meeting with Pence apparently through “private contacts”, a well-informed observer told me. Rich Pakistani-Americans are being deployed to open doors. That said, it’s also true that the Trump Administration needs some movement towards peace talks and, therefore, Pakistan’s help after Presi-

dent Ashraf Ghani went out on a limb to offer the Taliban a comprehensive peace deal. The White House called it the “most important opening made by the Afghan government in several years”. But the Taliban will have to engage with Kabul, not Washington. “We are not interested in talking to the Taliban directly. We will support the Afghan government,” the senior administration official stressed. “We would like to see peace talks (but) we are not desperate.” The new fighting season is upon us and Afghans will soon know whether US military pressure is working and whether Pakistan is changing. Every winter brings new efforts for peace and every summer they fail.Meanwhile, specific information about the camps in Pakistan has begun leaking — a clear signal to the ISI to get moving. Bill Gertz, a national security columnist who has covered the Af-Pak war for years, revealed many hangouts of the Taliban in his latest piece. Taliban militants apparently meet their ISI minders in an army garrison in Quetta, the top leadership operates from Pashtunabad, Gulistan and Killa Abdullah, and families live in Guldara Baghicha near Chaman near the border with Afghanistan. Pakistan knows it could lose more than a billion dollars in US aid unless the White House re-programmes it before end of the fiscal year. The big question: would Trump allow the funds to lapse? -Economic Times Seema Sirohi writes on foreign policy and India’s place in the world. She has covered India-US relations for nearly three decadex.


CHICAGO: NAND KAPOOR INDIA: ASEEM KULKARNI ®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 4 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: 713-789-6397 email: indoamericannews@yahoo.com, website: www.indoamerican-news.com



March 23, 2018


History and Literature Beckon Around Every Corner of Edinburgh

Edinburgh Castle dominates the city center on the east side. The Royal Mile runs from its front gate all the way to the Holyroodhouse Palace on the west side.

The Holyrood House Palace is the official palace of the Queen though her personal palace, Balmoral, is further to the north of Dundee and west of Aberdeen.

The stylishly modern 5 year-old Scottish Parliament building is situated across the street from the Holyroodhouse Palace.



inburgh is one of the UNESCO World Heritage Cities and there is so much history around you (“101 places in Edinburgh” to see, the placards say) it naturally oozes into you. You get a good glimpse of English history - the kind I learnt, like most other Indian kids in school - when you walk around Edinburgh. The massive old structures made of sandstone have darkened with hundreds of years of accumulated grime, mildew and most recently air pollution and you have an impulse to power wash them into cleanliness! On the east side of town, east of North Bridge Street and the central Waverly Train station – the city is dominated by Edinburgh Castle on a hill, which is really a fort that was impenetrable during many wars between the Scotts and the English. On

the plaza in front of the fort, there is a placard by the cross commemorating the Heroes of the 78th Highlanders during the Indian Mutiny of 1857-58 in Lucknow and it especially talks about the elephant that was brought to Scotland in 1839 and became their mascot in 1839 “often drinking beer”! The west end of the city is dominated by Calton Hill and the panoramic views of the city and the Firth of Forth estuary. It has numerous monuments built in the Athenian style (versus Greco-Roman in other European capitals) and the old “New Parliament” building. There is a new cemetery which is hedged in between a road and housing on the other side, not far from the 15th century Holyroodhouse Palace, the official working palace of the Royals. Facing the Palace is the five-year-old Scottish Parliament building and in the front plaza, two women were perched on a stone ledge, knitting away without any concerns! The grounds and the

A plaque outside the Black Medicine Coffee Co. heralds how J.K. Rowling of Harry Potter fame wrote in its rooms.

front formal rooms of the Palace are open to visitors as is the Abbey whose roof finally collapsed for the last (of three) time in 1872. On most days you are able to get a free visitor’s pass and see the proceedings of the session of Parliament from the seats in the balcony. Edinburgh is fascinating with all the references in the city to academic, literary and other famous figures among its inhabitants. Adam Smith, a social philosopher and economist who wrote “The Wealth of Nations” is immortalized with a bronze statue on the Royal Mile.Across on the other end of the Mile, on Calton Hill, there is a hilltop monument to 19th century philosopher Dugald Stewart, and this was the model for the pillared rotunda monument further down the road near the new cemetery to Scotland’s famous 19th century poet Robert Burns who lived in Edinburgh for two years. In the center of town is the tall Scott spire monument to Sir Walter Scott, a 19th century poet and author of The Waverly Novels. Down from there is Deacon Brodie’s Tavern with a painted description of how his baseness inspired another Edinburgh famous son, Robert Louis Stevenson (of Treasure Island fame) to write “Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde”. Stevenson’s house is north of the city center. Another famous figure with a tavern to his name is Arthur Conan Doyle, the famous author of Sherlock Holmes. Andrew Carnegie, the steel magnate who made his fortune in the US, was born just north of the city in Dumfernline and there is a bust to him in the Central Library (he donated to 2811 libraries in his lifetime). Then there is the more curious story of Greyfriars Bobby, a dog who waited over his master John Gray’s grave till he himself died of old age at 16. Bobby’s gravestone is featured prominently at the graveyard entrance gate. It’s safe to say that Edinburghers love to read, even the homeless man on the street had a thick volume in his lap. And the most famous modern writer must be J.K. Rowling who has plaques to her frequent use of local coffee shops like The Elephant House which boasts that is was the birthplace of Harry Potter and further up North Bridge Street, the Black Medicine Coffee Co. claims that Rowling wrote some of her early chapters there.


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20 March 23, 2018


ama Navami (25th March, 2018 Sunday) is a Vedic or Hindu festival that celebrates the appearance of Lord Rama on the holy land of Ayodhya. The ancient scriptures of India have always stressed that the Lord descends in His various incarnations in order to attract the devotees and annihilate the evil-minded.The activities performed by the Lord are all worshipped, celebrated and meditated on by His dearest devotees. These activities are called as lila (pastimes). Such pastimes were performed by Lord Vishnu in His Rama incarnation or Avatar. Rama Navami marks the birth of Lord Rama for the Lord appeared on this day in the form of all-auspicious Rama. Legends of Lord Rama: Although Lord Rama was Himself the divine incarnation, He performed all of His prescribed duties with perfection. Life and activities of Rama is called Ramayana. It is one of the greatest ancient epics that teach justice and morality. His father King Dasharatha who wanted to enthrone Rama was forced by his youngest queen to exile Him and enthrone her son Bharata. As a result, Lord Rama just like an obedient son obliged and lived in exile with His consort Sita and

brother Lakshmana. The Lankan King Ravana besotted with the beautiful Sita abducted Herm causing ire in the mind, body, heart and soul of Rama. Assisted by His eternal servitor Hanuman and with the blessing of Lord Shiva, Rama engaged in one of the ghastly wars against the evil army of Ravana. The war witnessed the death of many. Ravana who was considered the mightiest among the evil-minded succumbed unto the feet of Rama and died. Legends of Rama feature His serving as the King, husband, son, brother, master and nemesis (Ravana’s). He played as the most perfected being in these roles. Spiritual Significance of Ram Navami: It is believed that listening submissively to the Ramayana narrated by a pure devotee of the Lord cleanses all the misgivings from one’s

mind and heart. Meditating on the auspicious form of Lord Rama and chanting His name is believed to ease the mental agonies and make the worshipper feel liberated (detached from the unnecessary attachments). One can learn from the life of Rama the art of performing one’s prescribed duties as an obedient son, respectful brother, ideal husband, humble leader and a merciful soul towards the fallen and oppressed. How to celebrate Rama Navami: Generally Rama Navami is celebrated in the social spirit. People engage in reciting Ramayana or reading the scriptures like Ramayana, Shrimad Bhagvatam and the like. Since the Lord is Absolute Truth, prayers offered in any form are absolute themselves. One can simply listen to the recitals or take part in bhajans, kirtans (devotional songs) at temples or at home.

Listening to the divine qualities mentioned in the scriptures is the best of all devotions. Once also take part in the Abhishek (coronation) ceremony of Lord Rama on this day. One can wear a Ten Mukhi Rudraksha bead ruled by Lord Krishna, an Eighteen Mukhi Rudraksha bead ruled by Bhumidevi (wife of Vishnu) and a Nineteen Mukhi Rudraksha bead ruled by Lord Narayan. All these beads are connected with Lord Vishnu or Rama Himself. You can also observe vrata (fast) and engage in services at temples of Rama. This is considered a service equal to that offered by Hanuman for engaging in the temple service with a devotional mood is also serving the lotus feet of Rama. Such a devotee is rare. -rudraksha-ratna.com

Special Recipe: Moong Dal Halwa

A classic recipe that is relished

throughout Rajasthan during the winter months, as it is supposed to keep the body warm and protect it from the bitter winter cold. It is considered to be auspicious, and is often prepared during Holi, Diwali and weddings too. It takes a long time and lots of patience to sauté the dal and prepare the Moong Dal Halwa, and it will probably require a little extra ghee too! However, the outcome is worth every minute of extra effort you put into it. You can make a larger quantity of this recipe and store it refrigerated for several weeks. Just add a little milk to the halwa before reheating it. Soaking time: 3 hours Preparation Time: 10 mins Cooking Time: 37 mins Total Time: 3 hours 47 minutes Makes 3 cups (12 0.25 cup ) Ingredients: 1 cup yellow moong dal (split yellow gram) a few saffron (kesar) strands 1 tbsp warm milk 1/2 cup ghee 1 cup warm milk 1 1/4 cups sugar 1/2 tsp cardamom (elaichi) powder

For The Garnish 2 tbsp almonds (badam) slivers Directions: 1. Soak the yellow moong dal in enough water for 3 hours. Drain well and blend in a mixer to a coarse paste without using any water. Keep aside. 2. Dissolve the saffron in 1 tablespoon of warm milk and keep aside. Heat the ghee in a deep nonstick kadhai, add the yellow moong dal paste and cook on a medium flame for 25 minutes, while stirring continuously.

3. Add the milk and 1 cup of warm water, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 7 to 8 minutes, while stirring continuously. 4. Add the sugar, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 3 minutes, while stirring continuously. 5. Add the saffron-milk mixture, cardamom powder, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 1 minute, while stirring continuously. 6. Serve warm garnished with almond slivers or store in an airtight container and refrigerate it. -tarladalal.com



March 23, 2018

The Best Face Oils (for Every Skin Concern)


Want smooth, flawless skin in time

for summer? (Duh—don’t we all?) Here’s your secret weapon. Kick-start your skin renewal plans with the help of kick-ass skin care oils. And FYI, ladies aren’t the only ones who can benefit from hydrating facial products. Face oils are for guys too. Soothe dry, sensitive skin. Dry weather can leave your skin in need of some serious moisture, especially if you have eczema or rosacea. Oils serve as barriers, protecting your skin against irritants. Some oils even soothe inflammation and help rebuild the skin’s strength and immunity. Borage oil Borage oil is one of your best bets for alleviating eczema. It’s high in gamma-linolenic acid, a nourishing essential fatty acid. Borage oil also promotes skin elasticity and has itchreducing properties. Use it: Borage oil makes an excellent facial moisturizer, but it can also be used anywhere on the body or scalp. It’s so therapeutic that it’s even been incorporated into the fabric of undershirts to help soothe childhood eczema. Camellia oil Camellia oil is another calming oil that’s effective on rosacea and many other inflammatory conditions. Camellia is the same flower that green tea is made from and shares its antioxidant properties, which help

If you think face oils are only meant for dry skin, think again combat free radical damage. This oil can also strengthen skin tissue, making your complexion more resilient and robust. Use it: Camellia oil has a wonderful silky texture that makes for a light moisturizer and a good base for makeup. Moringa oil Moringa oil is super moisturizing, imparting a glow to skin without being overly oily. Its moisturizing and smoothing qualities may have to do with moringa oil’s high levels of oleic acid (a type of omega-9 fatty acid). Use it: Use moringa oil as a natural moisturizer one to two times daily when skin is really parched. Beat breakouts for good. Surprise! Face oils can be used to treat acne too. Acne-prone people tend to fear oil because there’s a common misconception that oil causes blemishes and clogged pores. In fact, many oils have the ability to regulate your oil glands and decrease skin’s oiliness. Argan oil Argan oil possesses potent antibacterial properties. Along with regulating oil secretions, argan oil guards your skin against infections, working to prevent breakouts. Use it: Apply argan oil daily to help control sebaceous (oil gland) activity.

Neem oil Neem oil is another clarifying oil with powerful antiseptic actions. Neem is a plant indigenous to India, and its oil is used extensively in Ayurvedic medicine to treat infections and inflammation. Its antiseptic, antifungal, antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties make it an excellent option for breakouts and other skin infections. Use it: Undiluted neem oil doesn’t have the best smell (think burned diesel fuel and peanut butter), so look for skin care products that include neem as an ingredient. You can also try adding a drop of pure neem oil to your moisturizer. Get that youthful glow. Oils are excellent for antiaging, as

they nourish and soften your skin as well as create a barrier that locks in hydration. Avocado oil Avocado oil is ideal for antiaging, as it’s richer and heavier than most other oils. Avocado oil is incredible for repairing skin and combating aging caused by everyday damage. Use it: Avocado oil is best used over a hydrating, water-based serum, as its heavier texture seals the light serum into skin tissue, making it more effective in protecting the skin. Evening primrose oil Evening primrose oil can provide support for women’s bodies as they transition into menopause and soothe any accompanying skin changes. It may also be effective for treating


hyperpigmentation and UV damage, as well as diminishing age spots. Use it: Evening primrose oil can be applied topically and taken orally for its hormone-balancing properties (consult your natural health practitioner for dosage advice). Ditch dark spots and sun damage. Hyperpigmentation is an especially difficult skin condition to treat. Conventional bleaching agents and peels can have negative effects like the potential to cause further damage and sun sensitivity. Some skin-lightening chemicals have even been identified as possible carcinogens. Rosehip oil Rosehip oil has been touted as a miracle skin care product by the likes of former Victoria’s Secret Angel Miranda Kerr and actress Rose Byrne. The rosehip fruit’s high vitamin A and C content aids skin repair and reduces scarring, and rosehip oil has been shown to reduce pigmentation. Use it: Rosehip oil is best applied on damp skin for maximum absorption. Twice daily, apply two to three drops directly to problem areas and massage gently until absorbed. Tamanu oil Tamanu oil is famed for its woundhealing actions and scar-fading properties. It’s derived from the nut kernels of the tropical tamanu tree. Use it: Tamanu oil may be applied directly to the skin or mixed with other skin products. Use it to treat uneven skin tone, especially for fading skin marks and scars. -Alive.com


22 March 23, 2018



Mama’s Punjabi Recipes

Idli aur Nariyal Chutney (South Indian Rice Cakes & Coconut Chutney)

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mong the South Indian dishes that have migrated northward over the past 40 years to the Punjab, idlis (rice cakes) are second only to dosas (rice crepes) in popularity, even into other parts of North India. With the advent of ready-made mixes, both these dishes are easily prepared in homes and there are plenty of restaurants and street vendor stalls which offer these snacks. Idli is a traditional Tamil dish, with references in Vaddaradhane, a 920 AD Kannada language work by Shivakotiacharya which mentions “iddalige”, prepared only from a black urad dal (lentil) batter. An uddina idli recipe is described in the 12th century AD, in the area that is now Karnataka where it is still made to this day. Karnataka is also home to the popular thinner and crispier variety of dosas. The main ingredients for idlis are the same as for dosas except for the measures: rice and skinless urad lentils. The idlis are usually thicker and fluffier and are usually served with sambar and coconut chutney, though Punjabis will eat often them with spicy chutney alone. After Independence, South Indian cuisine drifted across the country and many variations developed in the preparation of idlis. Some people used parboiled rice, cream of rice, semolina or cream of wheat and even yogurt to add the sour flavor and cut down on the fermentation. In New Delhi idlis and dosas were first served at the Madras Hotel in Connaught Place where they became wildly popular. Idlis are high in carbohydrates but are also a good source of protein. The rice and lentils are allowed to ferment in order to make a batter, and this increases the vitamin B and vitamin C content. Instant idli mixes usually contain higher amounts of rice. In this recipe, a small amount of methi (fenugreek) seeds are added to

enhance the flavor. Idlis can be served with chutney and sambar (a thin, lentil-based spicy vegetable soup). Some people add other flavors like mustard seeds, chilli peppers, ginger and so on and some even add sugar to make sweet idlis. Leftover idlis can be cut-up or crushed and sautéed to make idli upma. You can even make a dahin idli by combining them with yogurt, adding spices and then tempering the dish. Some restaurants have even made fusion dishes like idli Manchurian, idli fry and chilli idli. Cocktail sized idlis served on a toothpick have also become popular over the past decade. To make the small idlis (usually 2 to 3 inches diameter) you will need a idli steamer which looks like a tray to make poached eggs but stacked so that many can be made at one time. Idlis are quick to make in a stovetop steamer, microwave or an automatic electric idli maker. Rather than use instant mixes, I hope that younger people will see how simple the ingredients are and try to enjoy making idlis at home themselves. This recipe does not use any dahin (yogurt). The chutney recipe is also quite simple, but other pickles and chutneys can be substituted. Ingredients: For Idlis: • 2 cups chawal ka atta (rice flour) • 1 cup dhuli urad ki daal ka atta (skinless urad lentil flour) • 2 tsp methi danna powder (fenugreek powder) • 4 cup pani (water) • Some tael (vegetable oil) – for cooking idlis • Spices to taste: namak (salt), mirch (red pepper) For Coconut Chutney: • 1 cup kutra hua nariyal (grated coconut) • 1/4 cup hari mirch (green chillies) • 2 tbsp imbli paste (tamarind paste) • 2 cups pani (water)

a bowl. 3. Pour in the water and mix well making sure there are no clumps in the mixture. 4. Cover the bowl and leave it inside the oven overnight. Do NOT turn the oven on but leave the oven light on to keep a steady temperature. This will help the mixture to ferment overnight. 5. In the morning, take the bowl out of the oven and stir to check consistency. The batter should be thick enough to spread. 6. Fill the idli steamer with some water at the bottom. Coat each basin (usually four or five to a tray) with some oil and then then pour in the mixture. When each tray is full, stack each tray up. 7. Close the steamer and turn the heat on to medium to let the water boil for 10 minutes. Turn the heat off and let steamer sit for another 5 minutes. 8. Open the steamer and check the idli in the top tray. If it is firm with tiny spores, then it is ready to eat. If not, then let it cook in the steam a few more minutes. 9. When ready, take the trays out and pour the idlis into a bowl. Serve hot with the coconut chutney. For Coconut Chutney: 1. Wash the green chillies and then cut into small pieces. 2. In a small bowl, mix the chopped chilies and grated coconut together. 3. Add the imbli paste and pour in the water slowly, stirring continuously to mix well. 4. Leave in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes before serving.

Directions: For Dosas: 1. If you are unable to find the urad daal flour or methi danna powder, you can take the same amounts and grind them finely. 2. Mix all the chawal atta, urad atta and methi danna powder together in

Shakuntla Malhotra is a skilled cook of Punjabi dishes made in the oldfashioned style that she learnt as a young woman in her ancestral home in Lyallpur, India (since renamed Faisalabad) 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 late-eighties, she continues to cook daily and agreed to share her delectable Punjabi vegetarian recipes for future generations.

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March 23, 2018


An incorruptible IT officer Amay Patnaik (Ajay Devgn) gets an anonymous tip about a political leader Tauji’s (Saurabh Shukla) illegal assets. Patnaik plans an elaborate Raid on Tauji’s home and businesses. A good film is it’s own reward. Raj Kumar Gupta has made an entertaining and impressive film with Raid. Ritesh Shah has written an intelligent script and screenplay one that has interesting characters and dialogue too. Raid is an engrossing film, its moulded in the commercial film format. There are songs, there are twists and there’s an abundance of thrills. This one has all the trappings of a film you’d want to root for. As the hero fights corruption with utmost honesty, and his team of officers unearth hidden assets with lively enthusiasm,


the viewer feels the thrill of seeing gold biscuits and currency notes pop out from walls and other unlikely sources. The music by Amit Trivedi and Tanishk Bagchi doesn’t really fit into the gritty narrative and end up as a distraction from the otherwise

taut story. Tracks like ‘Sanu Ek Pal’ and ‘Nit Khair Manga’ look like they’ve been included just to add to the film’s commercial prospects. Ajay Devgn plays Amay Patnaik with characteristic intensity and resolve. He’s the quintessential public servant. His ideals are taller

than his lanky frame and his integrity is infallible. With great pride he assumes control of the IT department in Lucknow in the year 1981. Saurabh Shukla plays the chief antagonist Tauji to great effect. He’s the resident baahubali, a man who prides his political power and has enough confidence to mock the hero before the raid begins. He throws him a challenge, that the IT man will not find a single rupee during the search operation. In Raid, the battle takes place between the ideals of one man and the belief of the other. The hero is the voice of justice and righteousness while the villain is on a power trip. Their banter, their clash and their conflict makes for an engrossing watch. But this politically charged film is at times a little too predictable. Saurabh Shukla’s performance


as Tauji is the highlight of the film. He brings in quirks and shades that make his character the most interesting part of the film. Ajay Devgn does what he does best – he keeps the intensity high and delivers his punchy dialogues with effortless ease. Ileana D’Cruz andAmit Sial chip in with good supporting performances as well. 85-year-old Pushpa Joshi as Tauji’s mother is extremely charming. Director Raj Kumar Gupta handles the film well. The last 10 minutes seem a little fleeting, but that’s a minor grouse. The music by Amit Trivedi and Tanishk Bagchi isn’t consistent either. But Raid is a film that caters to public sentiment against black money and corruption. All in all, this one’s right on the money. -timesofindia.com

Daler Mehndi Sentenced to 2 Years Jail Janhvi Kapoor Thanks Madhuri Dixit for Stepping in Human Trafficking Case, Gets Bail into Sridevi’s Role in Abhishek Varman’s Next Film Happy Birthday

Kangna Ranaut March 23, 1987

Pop singer Daler Mehndi speaks to the media after he was granted bail, at district court complex in Patiala on Friday. He was convicted in a 2003 human trafficking case.


UMBAI: Bollywood singer Daler Mehndi was handed a twoyear prison sentence on Friday in a case over smuggling people into the United States while on tour there 20 years ago. Known for his boisterous and energetic songs, 50-year-old Mehndi has had several hits in Bollywood in his native Punjabi language. He is popular among the Indian diaspora in the United States and Canada. The singer said on Twitter he would

appeal against the verdict. Mehndi has said he is innocent. His brother, who was a co-accused in the case, died last year. Mehndi’s lawyer said the singer had been granted bail immediately after the sentencing by the court in the city of Patiala in the state of Punjab. “... I have complete faith in God that truth will come out soon,” Mehndi said on Twitter. -livemint.com

Sridevi’s untimely demise took the

country by storm. Not only were the near and dear ones affected but her fans too couldn’t bear the loss. The late actress was going to be a part of Karan Johar’s upcoming production being helmed by Abhishek Verman. Today, Sridevi’s elder daughter Janhvi Kapoor took to her Instagram handle to announce the news of Madhuri Dixit stepping into the part which was supposed to be played by Sridevi. The

star kid shared a photo of Sridevi and Madhuri with the caption, “Abhishek Varman’s next film was very close to mom’s heart ....Dad, Khushi and I are thankful to Madhuriji for now being a part of this beautiful film....” The film reportedly had an ensemble cast comprising of Alia Bhatt, Varun Dhawan, Sanjay Dutt, Sonakshi Sinha and Aditya Roy Kapur. -timesofindia.indiatimes.com


Emraan Hashmi March 24, 1979

Akshaye Khanna March 28, 1975

24 March 23, 2018 India Clinch with Karthik’s Stunning Last-ball Six BY ANDREW FIDEL FERNANDO


OLOMBO: (ESPN Cricinfo): India 168 for 6 (Rohit 56, Karthik 29*) beat Bangladesh 166 for 8 (Sabbir 77, Chahal 3-18) by four wickets When Dinesh Karthik came to the crease, India required 34 off 12 balls. Mustafizur Rahman had just delivered perhaps the over of the tournament. A profoundly deflated Vijay Shankar was batting at the other end. What unravelled was a scarcely believable finish that saw Bangladesh fritter away their chance at the title, and Karthik - phenomenally cool at the crease - seized ruthlessly on their string of mistakes. He punished Rubel Hossain in the penultimate over, as the bowler continually missed his yorkers. The first ball, a full toss, disappeared over Rubel’s head. Later in the over, overpitched balls would be smashed over cow corner and blasted past square leg. Twenty-two runs were hit off that over, but Karthik’s best moment came at the end of the next. India now needing five off the last ball, he drilled a wide half volley from Soumya Sarkar over the extra cover rope. An India-supporting Khettarama crowd, a phenomenon without precedence in the 21st century, was tipped into euphoria. His own team-mates flew out of the dressing room to greet him, engulfing him in a frenzied huddle. Bangladesh, who had already triumphed in two thrillers, doing so much to prove they had rid themselves of the many hang-ups their 2016 World T20 defeat to India had spawned, were almost inconsolably distraught at the end of this match, now having collected a second haunting loss at the same opponent’s hands. They had bowled so beautifully in defense of their 166 for 8 - a total that seemed perhaps 15 runs light. They had bowled four consecutive boundary-less overs in the middle, conceding only 16 during that spell, and consequently raising India’s required rate from 7.81 at the end of the ninth over to 10 at the close of the 13th. Rohit Sharma, who had helped set up the pursuit with 56 off 42, was dismissed soon after, and both Manish Pandey nor Shankar were chased into a corner by a proliferation of Bangladesh dot balls.

Washington Sundar embraces Dinesh Karthik after his last-ball six, India v Bangladesh, Nidahas Trophy final, Colombo, March 18, 2018.

But all through this tournament, India have found special performers even from among this second string of players. After Mustafizur had bowled a wicket maiden in his final over the tournament, Karthik was India’s human adrenaline shot, reviving an innings that had seemed doomed to a quiet death. His only stroke of fortune was that he had Sarkar to face in the last over, a result of Bangladesh’s refusal to give Mehidy Hasan a second over after his first had been hit for 17 in the Powerplay.

Elsewhere in the game - though so much will be forgotten in that scintillating last-ball finish - there was a 77 off 50 balls from Sabbir Rahman that held the Bangladesh innings together, and outstanding spells from Yuzvendra Chahal and Washington Sundar, the former claiming 3 for 18, the latter 1 for 20. In fact, the two India spinners had combined to deck the opposition top order as early as the fourth over of the game. The openers had been watchful in Sundar’s first over, but the

moment one attacked him a wicket resulted - Liton Das caught at square leg after having attempted a slog sweep. Next over, Chahal’s first, provided two more wickets. Tamim Iqbal advanced, but although he sent the ball high into the Colombo night, he could not clear the field - Shardul Thakur plucking the ball above his head at long-on and expertly keeping his balance to avoid contact with the boundary. Four balls later, Sarkar swept Chahal straight to square leg, and Bangladesh were 33 for 3. Sabbir was involved in rebuilding work with the seniors, putting on 35 in Mushifqur Rahim’s company, then 36 in Mahmudullah’s. Bangladesh would probably have got themselves to a better score had Sabbir not run Mahmudullah out in the 15th over Mahmudullah marooned at the striker’s end after Sabbir had sprinted to the keeper without taking note of his partner’s reluctance. Sabbir then took it upon himself to club a few more leg-side boundaries, before being dismissed himself. Mehidy Hasan provided a final fillip, scoring 18 off the last over, bowled by Thakur. India appeared to have the measure of this chase early, as after only 13 balls they had already struck 30. But then Shikhar Dhawan and Suresh Raina fell in successive overs, and the innings slowed down. Rohit, who had made 39 in the Powerplay, scored only 13 runs in the six subsequent overs, When he holed out to Nazmul Islam - the original keeper of the Nagin dance - Pandey and Shankar were brought together. It was their dithering partnership, which was worth only 35 off 28 balls, that left India requiring the kind of furious finish that Karthik provided.

Always Playing More Aggressively - Aussie Healy India in the third ODI took fully get a couple more before I pull VADODARA: The past three against shape of a roller-coaster ride and up stumps. It’s obviously been a long

months have brought two firsts for Alyssa Healy, each of which have had an air of deferred inevitability about them: a maiden Women’s Big Bash League ton in January, followed by her first international century. If the WBBL ton - a 66-ball 106 against the Adelaide Strikers - in her 41st appearance in the league was a statement of intent, her 115-ball 133

ended up imparting a long-awaited degree of validation to her 136-match international career. “Yeah, it was a big feeling of relief, I guess,” Healy said after Austalia’s win on Sunday. “Played a lot of cricket to not have one (century). Pretty excited to sit here with finally a hundred under my belt. And hope-

six months for us. I feel lucky I have been hitting the ball well. “It was probably just about adjusting to the conditions a little bit better and the spinners. So, yeah, obviously got off to the flier in the first game and got myself out. [I] did a lot of work to spin in the last few days,” Alyssa Healy revealed.


“I Have to Come Back Stronger”: PV Sindhu


IRMINGHAM: Star Indian shuttler PV Sindhu vowed to come back stronger after losing an epic semifinal against World No. 2 Akane Yamaguchi at the All England Championship. In a nail-biting semifinal, fourth seed Sindhu went down fighting 21-19, 19-21, 18-21 to Yamaguchi after battling for an hour and 19 minutes late last night. “It was just not my day. I gave my 100 percent. There are always ups and downs and one should win and one should lose. There were long rallies and she played well,” Sindhu said after the gruelling contest. “Playing a three-game tie is not easy. Just twothree points made the huge difference in the end as it was anybody’s game. I have a lot of things to learn from this tournament. You keep losing and winning but it was a good tournament and I have to come back stronger.” Nary an expression of worry or self-doubt crossed that inscrutable visage as Yamaguchi simply upped the pace and cut out the unforced errors that had caused her to trail by such a huge margin. And when the dust finally settled on the green Hova court of the Birmingham Arena, the Japanese No 2 seed boasted a winning scoreline of 19-21, 21-19, 21-18 against her name. Yamaguchi, who had won the German Open earlier this month, said it was her aggressive approach that earned her the win. “This win is very valuable asset for me. I am thankful that I got a chance to fight tomorrow. I was just trying to keep up with the pace and hang on. I was aggressive in the end and it led to the win,” she said. In the women’s final, however, top seed and defending champion Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan beat second seed Akane Yamaguchi from Japan 22-20 21-13.

“It was a good tournament and I have to come back stronger.” -- Sindhu.


March 23, 2018


Walmart to Double Down on US Slaps Anti-dumping Duty on Chinese, Indian Steel Flanges E-commerce with India Focus tions—a 96% increase from 20 Janu- NEW DELHI: Walmart Inc., the WASHINGTON, DC: The Trump ary 2016 through 20 March 2017, the world’s largest retailer, is looking to administration has decided to slap an anti-dumping duty on the stainless steel flanges imported from China and India after it found in its preliminary probe that both the countries had provided subsidies to the exporters. In January, the US had slapped antidumping duty on finer denier polyester staple fibre from China and India after the Department of Commerce found that exporters from both the countries received subsidies of 41.73 to 47.55% and 9.50 to 25.28%, respectively. The Department of Commerce has found that exporters from China and India have sold stainless steel flanges in the US at 257.11% and 18.10 to 145.25% less than fair value, respectively, according to an official statement issued on Tuesday. Following this decision, the commerce department has instructed the US Customs and Border Protection

businesses are destroyed by unfair foreign government subsidies and dumping,” US commerce secretary Wilbur Ross said. “This Administration is taking fair and transparent action on behalf of American industry to defend businesses and workers while we continue reviewing the facts related to this decision,” he said. The enforcement of the US trade law is a prime focus of the Trump administration. From 20 January 2017, through 20 March 2018, the commerce department has initiated 102 anti-dumping and countervailing duty investiga-

(USCBP) to collect cash deposits from importers of the stainless steel flanges from China and India, based on these preliminary rates, it said. In 2016, imports of stainless steel flanges from China and India were valued at an estimated $16.3 million and $32.1 million, respectively. The preliminary investigation was launched by the Department on the petition by the Coalition of American Flange Producers, including Core Pipe Products Inc. (Carol Stream, IL) and Maass Flange Corporation (Houston). “The United States will not sit back and watch as our domestic

statement said. The anti-dumping law provides the US businesses and workers with an internationally accepted mechanism to seek relief from the harmful effects of unfair pricing of imports into the US. Commerce currently maintains 428 anti-dumping and countervailing duty orders which provide relief to American companies and industries impacted by unfair trade, it said. Commerce is scheduled to announce the final determinations in these investigations on or about 5 June, it added. In January, the US had slapped anti-dumping duty on finer denier polyester staple fibre from China and India after the Department of Commerce found that exporters from both the countries received subsidies of 41.73% to 47.55% and 9.50% to 25.28%, respectively. -Live Mint

How Dotcom Survivors Built a $950 Million Startup in India


ENGALURU: Tech startups are typically founded by young entrepreneurs with more passion than experience. This is as true in India as it is in Silicon Valley. Then there’s Bigbasket, whose founders are veterans of the dotcom bust and mostly north of 50. Drawing on their successes and failures, they’ve turned their six-year-old startup into India’s biggest e-grocer and are taking on a host of competitors, including Amazon and brickand-mortar chains operated by the nation’s biggest conglomerates. Bangalore-based Bigbasket delivers everyday cooking essentials like ghee (clarified butter), diced coconut and fragrant basmati rice, as well as 18,000 other items from bread to laundry detergent to eight million customers in 25 Indian cities. It’s mostly targeting upwardly mobile young Indians keen to avoid traffic and the drudgery of supermarket runs. Last month,

Bigbasket raised $300 million in an Alibaba-led round that valued the grocer at $950 million—just shy of unicorn status. In a country where groceries account for half of the almost $1 trillion retail market, Bigbasket is using knowledge learned the hard way during the dotcom era (don’t expand too quickly or use discounts to acquire shoppers) and latter-day innovation (putting vending machines inside apartment buildings; building a sup-

ply chain of competitively priced organic produce). “We want customers to get hooked, and make our service harder to replicate,” says Hari Menon, 56, cofounder and chief executive officer. He, along with V.S. Sudhakar (58), Vipul Parekh (53), Abhinay Choudhari (47) and VS Ramesh (62), founded Bigbasket parent Supermarket Grocery Supplies Pvt, in December 2011 in a nondescript building in Bangalore’s humming Indiranagar

neighborhood. In 2011, they were approached to regroup for an online grocery. Plenty of people told them to stay away from perishable produce in a country so obsessed with freshness that shoppers surreptitiously break okra tips and sink their fingernails into cucumbers. The founders pressed on all the same. But their timing was propitious: smartphones were proliferating, broadband was becoming affordable, and online payments were in place. Delivering fresh food is challenging everywhere, but India presents steeper obstacles. Eventually, Bigbasket put together its own refrigerated warehouses and a fleet of trucks. These moves let the company source the food more cheaply and eventually in 2016 led them to launch Express, a 90-minute delivery service for milk, eggs, bread and emergency supplies. -Indian Express

double down on investments in its e-commerce business, hire more top tech talent from countries like India, and invest in or acquire Indian tech start-ups, amid a bruising global battle against Amazon.com Inc., even as it inches closer to a deal to acquire a majority stake in India’s largest internet start-up, Flipkart Ltd. In an interview on Monday, Walmart’s chief technology officer Jeremy King said the company would continue to expand aggressively in India, where it built out its largest technology centre outside its home market a few years ago. King, however, declined to comment on Walmart’s current talks with Flipkart. “My focus is really taking some of the same strategy we have from a tech perspective—we’ve acquired 13 companies and we would love to do that here in Bengaluru as well. The last time we were here, we met a bunch of start-ups. My goal is to pick up somewhere between three and five start-ups in the next year or so, because we’ve had a lot of success in the US with that. It never ceases to amaze me to see how many start-ups are getting cranked out from Bengaluru,” said King. Mint first reported on 17 February that the Arkansas-based retailer may end up taking a large stake in Flipkart at a price that could value India’s largest e-commerce firm between $20-23 billion. The Economic Times had reported on 31 January on the initial talks between Walmart and Flipkart. Over the past few years, Walmart has made significant strategic investments and acquisitions to advance its e-commerce ambitions. In 2016, Walmart bought US-based online retailer Jet.com for $3.3 billion.


26 March 23, 2018 Job Posting:

Multimedia Account Executive

KTRK-TV ABC13 Houston, TX an ABC-TV owned television station is seeking to fill a Multimedia Account Executive position. Candidate must be able to generate revenue across all ABC13 platforms including digital and social. The ideal candidate must close new business and increase station revenue/ share on existing accounts. The candidate must also excel at managing client relationships, developing solutions to help grow clients’ business through multiplatform packages, managing deals through all stages of the sales cycle and customer service. Candidate must be a self-motivated team player with the ability to grow their business and keep their new business pipeline filled. Applicant should have knowledge of the daily television business including Traffic, Promotion, News and Marketing. A proven track record is required. To be considered all interested applicants must apply online at disneycareers. com. Please upload a cover letter, resume and list of references. Please reference Job Requisition # 538327BR. No Telephone Calls Please. KTRK-TV is an Equal Opportunity Employer Female/Minority/Veteran/Disability/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity

Job Posting:

Temporary News Producer

We are looking for an experienced, dynamic, creative television news producer to join our team on a temporary basis this spring. Must be available from late April until mid-July. There is no guarantee this will lead to a permanent producer position, but this is a great opportunity to get your foot in the door of one of the best local news stations in the country. You must have hands-on experience producing or working as an associate producer for a live newscast. Knowledge of ENPS and desktop editing a plus. Must be able to perform efficiently in a fast-paced, high-energy environment. Should be able to demonstrate excellent news judgement and strong writing skills. To be considered all interested applicants must apply online at www.disneycareers.com. Please upload a cover letter, resume and list of references. Please reference Job Requisition # 532614BR. No Telephone Calls Please. KTRK-TV is an Equal Opportunity Employer Female/Minority/Veteran/Disability/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity

Job Posting:

Multi Media Journalist

KTRK-TV the ABC Owned station in Houston, TX is looking for a smart, savvy, passionate, high-energy, hard-working MMJ with a positive attitude. You will be researching and setting up stories every day, along with shooting, writing, and editing for TV and for digital. You also need to be very skilled and seasoned in covering live breaking news. Candidates must show examples of live shots that are creative, memorable, engaging and stand out in the crowd. You will constantly be working under tight deadlines. On most days, you will be working independently but on some days you will be assigned a photographer, in particular for most live shots.You must have a knack for quickly cultivating contacts in the community and must know how to dig for unique, exclusive content on the big and little stories alike. We want a respected, knowledgeable, ethical station representative and promoter with a strong presence on social media. You must have at least 2 years of broadcast photography experience AND 2 years of on-air experience. Candidates must be open to working any shift on any day of the week. Background check clearance and clean driving record will be required. To be considered all interested applicants must apply online at disneycareers.com. Please upload a cover letter, resume and list of references. Please reference Job Requisition # 535897BR. No Telephone Calls Please. KTRK-TV is an Equal Opportunity Employer Female/Minority/Veteran/Disability/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity

Job Posting:

Temporary Web Producer

KTRK-TV is looking for a Temporary Digital Producer who can do it all to be part of the team leading the charge to take our digital efforts to the next level. The ideal candidate will have three years’ experience working in major market television or print news internet operation, the ability to shoot and edit video and working experience of Photoshop. Additionally have proven social media expertise and must be flexible with work schedule which may vary depending on station needs and projects. Candidate must be able to handle many projects simultaneously. Candidate must be a self-starter and have a ‘Do It Now’ mentality to excel in our fastpaced environment. We are a 24/7 news operation, so digital producers must be willing to work any day or shift, as needed. To be considered all interested applicants must apply online at www.disneycareers.com.

Please upload a cover letter, resume and list of references. Please reference Job Requisition # 532268BR. No Telephone Calls Please. KTRK-TV is an Equal Opportunity Employer Female/Minority/Veteran/Disability/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity


Looking for Administrative Assistant Part - Time, Flexible Hours

First Ever

24 Hour

Telugu Radio in Houston

Online at www.radiohungama.net & Every Sunday 12 PM to 3 PM CST On

KCHN AM 1050 Contact: Sridhar Dadi at



• • •

Candidate will be responsible for various administrative duties and will report to the owner of the company. Some administrative/office experience is preferred. Excellent written & verbal communication skills. Deadline-Oriented, Acute Vision, Handles Rejection, Team Player. Additional qualifications: Excel, Word, InDesign, Photoshop, WordPress.

E-mail resume to : jobofficeassistant.ian2016@gmail.com


March 23, 2018




March 23, 2018


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