E newspaper 12012017

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Friday, December 01, 2017 | Vol. 36, No. 47

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Indo American News

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The Spellbinding Story of Cinderella

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Religious Ceremony & Cultural Programs!

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Sri Meenakshi Temple, Pearland

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December 01, 2017 3 COMMUNITY Historic Kumbhabhishekam at Sri Meenakshi Temple BY S. NARAYANAN

was so good the no one wanted him to finish the speech. Sit down banana leaf lunch with delicious food was provided to all and everyone enjoyed the meal with gratitude. The parking arrangements were flawless for these many visitors. Chairman Narayanan thanked everyone who helped to make this project a reality in particular secretary G.N. Prasad, treasurer Sasi Pillai, construction committee Chair AVN Reddy, Vinod Kaila, Ravi Vasu, Fundraising committee

PEARLAND:

Thursday, November 23, 2017 Thanksgiving Day was an important historic Maha Kumbhabhishekam day for our greater Houston Community. More than 4,000 people attended to witness the great event. The weather was picture perfect and the priests did a superb job to bring the devotional atmosphere for everyone. Devotees were very happy to carry the Silver plated Kalasam with holy water for the Vigraha Abhisekam. The celestial wedding of Sri Subramania and Sri Sita Rama Kalyana Utsavam was witnessed by thousands of devotees. The Utsav Murthies procession was a sight to watch. The helicopter showered flowers to the Vimanas and Gopurams. Installation of the 63 Nayanmargal, 12 Alwargal, 3 Acharyars, 18 Holy Steps for Ayyappa made this Kumbhabhisekam a very unique one. The Yagasala puja and chanting by 30 priests was appreciated by all the devotees. Raja Veedi stood magnificently with 16 feet granite pillars, it gave a new grand entrance for our great Temple. Devotees felt as if they were in India attending a Kumbhabhishekam. The new Nayanmargal and Alwargal Mandapams with 8 feet granite pillars created an ambiance of being in an ancient South Indian Temple built by kings. Devotees appreciated the new teak wood doors to the sannidhis. This CTRP project completes the vision of the MTS founders. This project expanded the Corner Mandapams and connected all four Corner Mandapams and the Main Temple with the Raja Veedi that has a magnificent sixteen feet ceiling and ornamental granite pillars. Now the devotees can enter the Main Temple complex and visit all the deities by walking underneath the covered structure. This will be

Kalasam Carrying

Raja Veedi

Ayyappa 18 Holy Steps

Three Acariyars Photos: Lakshminarayanan Setty & Srini Sundarrajan

very useful to all and specifically for children and senior citizens during inclement weather. Our Temple Sthapathi, Sri Padma Sri Muthiah Sthapathi, has

been giving us continuous guidance from the beginning of this project. He was the Sthapathi for the original construction of the Temple in 1982 and has continued to guide us on

all the expansions and improvements, including this CTRP project. We are thankful to Sthapathi for sending 16 shilpies from India to complete this project. I thank our architect Ashok Mungara for his drive towards excellence in the construction of the CTRP. The cultural program during the Kumbhabhisekam festivities were unbelievably good. Devotees proudly chanted Adi Shankaracharya Storams, Divya Prabhandham and Thiruvasakam. The audience was so involved with the music concert by Veeramani Raju, the whole auditorium felt the divine songs. Dr. Shoba Raju’s concert and releasing of new album will be remembered by everyone. The speech about Nayanmargal and Alwargal by Dr. Gnanasambandan

S. G. Appan, Venugopal Menon, Sam Kannappan, Kumar Bashyam, Tupil Narasiman, Dhani Kannan, T.A. Dorairajan, Muthuraman Solayappan, Kumbhabhishekam committee Padmini Nathan, Sheila Sriram, Nachal Sethuraman, Sundar Arun, C. Vijayarajan, Chandrakala Gupta, Kamala Raghavan, Ramachandra Reddy, Ramamurthy Ramsundar, Bhargavi Golla, Mala Gopal, Malar Narayanan, Prema Prasad, Senthil Devaraj, Muthukumar. To summarize, Great Religious ceremony, Wonderful Cultural Programs, Delicious Food. This is the 11th Kumbhabhisekam for Sri Meenakshi Temple and will be remembered by everyone for years to come.

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December 01, 2017

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COMMUNITY

December 01, 2017

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Shivangini Academy Students Present Kathak-based Charulata

STAFFORD:

The students of Shivangini Academy presented a Kathak-based dance drama, Charulata, based on the story of Cinderella on November 18 and 19. Shivangini Academy Director Shiva Mathur, an exponent of the Lucknow gharana, showcased her creative skills to masterfully express this story, weaving it with Kathak and the associated ‘Abhinay’ art. The show started with several classical Kathak-based dances, interspersed with live tabla and dholak segments, intended to provide the audience a flavor of a student’s classical journey in the Academy. This section of the program was a prelude to the feature presentation and included students from all the three wings: Dholak, Tabla and Kathak. The performers in the Charulata production, brought several magical moments from this classic tale to life. Enthralling scenes included one when the fairy godmother appeared and dramatically changed the destiny of Charulata by transforming her into a gorgeous princess. The fast-paced choreography was truly mesmerizing. Another captivating scene showed the Royal Ball and the bhav ntritya (focus on expressions) of the Prince and Charulata’s attraction to each other. This was followed by the dramatic transformation of Charulata back to rags at the midnight hour and her hurried departure, leaving her magical shoe behind. Several comic moments were weaved into the performance such the shoe-fitting scene where several village maidens came to try their luck with the magical shoe. The LED wall and its backdrops changing with amazing precision further added a brilliant impact to the story telling. The audience gave a standing ovation to the performers, a testimony to the hard work of all involved, particularly the Guru Mrs. Mathur. Kathak is one of the most promi-

nent classical art forms of North India and traditionally started with bands of dancers moving from village to village telling a story (katha) to the willing crowds. Mrs. Mathur craft fully used the same technique of storytelling through two traditional village characters – Nat and Natty. Several sections of the dancedrama were supported by live music and vocals. Well known sitar artist Shane Monds and vocal artist Neela Chakravarti, and Mrs. Mathur’s own Dholak and Tabla students performed the live segments.

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The fairy godmother was wonderfully portrayed by a senior student – Muskaan Chaturvedi. The role of stepmother was brought to life by another senior studentBianca Chandwani. Stepsisters were well portrayed by Sanjana Puthigai and Mehek Sikka. The role of the prince was very well performed by Isha Borkar, and to perform Charulata in rags, a 12th

year student - Swati Kundra was selected. For the role of the princess, Mrs. Mathur’s own daughter Tarika Nath was selected. The two sets of dancers who portrayed the role of Nat and Natty were Anika Saharia and Jilmil Das on the 18th and Anjali Asarpota and Misha Patel on the 19th. The royal messengers or the Rajdoots were ably presented by Riya So-

Photos: Navin Mediwala

lanki, Riya Parikh and Sanjana Ganjam on the 18th and Shreya Dhutia, Eshna Parikh and Anjana Patel on the 19th. The performance played to a packed hall on both the days!

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COMMUNITY

Arya Samaj of Greater Houston and the Consulate General of India Initiate Children’s Awareness Project on Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel BY KANIKA TALWAR

HOUSTON: On October 31, the Con-

sulate General of India, along with several other prominent Houston Indian community organizations, eminent speakers, and students of the University of Houston celebrated the 142th birth anniversary of the Iron Man of India by coming together on the occasion and recognizing the statesmanship and legacy of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, the creator, unifier, and statesman of modern India. Arya Samaj of Greater Houston, along with the Consulate General of India, took it one step further by creating a brand-new

project to spread awareness on the inspirational achievements of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel to this community’s youth--an essay

competition for all children in the greater Houston area.

Photos: Aditya Talwar

The topic of the essay competition was the “Life and Contributions of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel” for Junior and High School Students. After receiving enthusiastic response, the winner of the Middle School Junior competition was Alisha Flexwala, the runner-up was Khuishi Kawedia, and the second runner-up was Soumil Goyal. In the high school competition, the winner was Krishna Naik, the runner up was Jai Sehgal, and the second runner-up was Kanika Talwar. On Sunday, Nov 19, at Arya Samaj of Greater Houston, the Deputy Consul General of India in Houston, Shri Surendra Adana, along with Arya Samaj’s own Shri Dev Mahajan ji and Acharya Dr. Kavita Vachaknavee of the DAV Sansrkiti School, recognized these children for their hard work and thoughtful responses. These essays were the perfect way to impart motivation into the Indian youth community to go out and learn about this influential hero of India on their own, because they will carry this knowledge of their heritage with them for the rest of their lives. Shri Adhana’s speech reminded the entire Arya Samaj audience of India’s rich 5000year-old history and its progress since independence. In fact, in 1947, India’s literacy rates were only 12%, and life expectancy was just 32 years! Today, India has earned for itself a literacy rate of more than 75%, and life expectancy has raised to 70 years, showing its clear transformation made possible by stalwarts like Sardar Patel. Sardar Patel was a person of genuine selflessness and perseverance. He was India’s first Deputy Prime minister and home minster. And prime unifier post-independence, creating the one political entity that is modern India out of 526 chaotic princely states. This celebration of his life helped create an understanding and feel of this leader who sacrificed himself for Indian civilization. The Deputy Consul General ended his speech by reciting and interpreting an ancient Subhashita (good speech, wise saying) sloka for younger audiences on five qualities of a student to prepare them for the next few decades. Winners of Essay Competition: “Life and Contributions of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel” Middle School 1. Alisha Flexwala 2. Khushi Kawedia 3. Soumil Goyal High School 1. Krishna Naik 2. Jai Sehgal 3. Kanika Talwar

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COMMUNITY

December 01, 2017

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2017, the students of the prestigious Houston’s Youth Leadership Development Program had the absolute privilege of hearing Brian Greene’s presentation regarding Non-profit Organizations, as well as taking a tour of the astounding Houston Food Bank. Brian Greene is the current President and CEO of Houston Food Bank, a Non-profit Organization located in the Greater Houston Area that fights hunger by seeking donations and distributing meals. The Organization dispenses an impressive 83 million meals to 800,000 people annually. Greene has an MA in Economics from The University of Tennessee and a BA in Economics from Humboldt State University. Greene began his presentation by exploring the foundations of a successful non-profit organization. It starts with a committed board of directors, usually a group of volunteers wanting to make an impact on society. They set the basic and most vital foundations: a clear set of objectives, how will it

be run, what moral direction will it take, how will it get the needed resources. He then went on to explain a few career tracks that are available. Management in different sections of the organization, and subject matter experts, or people who are skilled in certain logistic, and of course, fundraising. Having a balanced number of employees, volunteers, and donors, is crucial in staying active and bring charitable causes to those in need. One key point about non- profits is that their purpose isn’t to make money, but rather to maximize the output with the available resources. Greene then went on to explain the importance of Leadership in a non- profit organization. He highlighted how leadership is nurtured and not as much a natural trait, which resonated well with the young audience. He also dismissed the idea that good leaders need to have many skills, such as finance, public speaking, etc. Leadership is about understanding oneself, and creating a strong team that is complementary to each other. This instilled a sense of reassurance in the students, and

a feeling of confidence. He advocated the need for leaders to have a strong moral compass - one that must be nurtured over time. With a strong moral compass, leaders can initiate meaningful initiatives and solve societal challenges. Ultimately, the importance of non- profit organizations is tremendous, because they can have a positive impact on areas of society where the government and for-profit businesses tend to fail. And, involving youth leaders in this essential function is key to ensuring the future of nonprofit work.

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12 December 01, 2017

COMMUNITY

Bharathi Kalai Manram Presents Fundraiser for Anjali Center HOUSTON:

In a gesture of great generosity, Bharathi Kalai Manram presented the Anjali Dance Company in a fundraising program for the rebuilding of the Harvey-damaged Anjali Center. Pranamya: Obeisance to the Gods, as the program was called, was very well conceived and beautifully choreographed by Rathna Kumar, the Center’s Director. In deference to the organization, most of the dances were in the Tamil language. The show began with a soulfully rendered prayer by the young sisters, Pavithra and Bhargavi Chandrasekhar, students of Rathna Kumar and Vidushi Rajarajeshwary Bhat. Following tradition, the dance segment commenced with a vibrant group rendering of Madurai R. Muralidaran’s Thunga Karimugam, in praise of the joyful dancing Ganapathy, performed by Ananya Gokhale, Divya Koothan, Keerthana Verma, Lakshmi Subramania, Nethra Subramanian, Radhika Daru, and Shriya Fruitwala. followed by an unusual Mandooka Sabdam, which, according to Rathna Kumar, is an original Kuchipudi song that was converted into a Bharatanatyam Sabdam by her Guru’s Guru, the iconoclastic Vazhuvoor Ramaiah Pillai. This solo, with episodes from the Ramayana, was beautifully presented

Photos: Amitava Sarkar

by Jvalanti Prasad, whose posture, grace and technique were enviably perfect. Agastya Mahamuni’s Sri Chakra Raja Simhasaneswari, choreographed and sung by Guru Narasimhachari, and performed with feeling and dignity by his student Venugopal Josyula, the Center’s Assistant Director, drew loud applause from the audience. The

central piece of the show, a dynamic Varnam,, Aadum Mayilmel Varuvaan, also by Madurai Muralidaran, described the peacock-riding Lord Muruga and his various exploits. The rhythmic sequences were choreographedgcg imaginatively, as for instance the first one, which was done entirely using the mudra or hand gesture represent-

DIVORCE

ing the peacock. The stories were acted out in a very interesting manner by the group, each dancer playing a different character, making it easy for the audience to understand. Three more solos were presented before the unusual finale, performed by a quartet. Amulya Peri, with her big, expressive eyes, was the very personification of fury as she became Durga, the destroyer of Mahishasura, in Padma Vibhushan M. Balamuralikrishna’s unforgettable Omkarakarini. Samyukta Hari’s intense Neene Anaadha Bandhu (Purandaradasa) clearly proved her maturity as a dancer, considering the ease with which she changed roles from the wily Duryodhana to the wavering Yudhishtir, and from the evil Dusshasana to the help-

less Draupadi. A powerful and high energy Sambhu Natanam by Isha Parupudi left the audience breathless as Isha alternately leaped,cccc spun in circles, and froze in sculpturesque poses. Patanjali’s paean to Nataraja was followed by Nrittaarpanam, a lively composition by veena maestro Rajesh Vaidhya, choreographed with many off beat formations and juxtapositions by Rathna Kumar and performed with élan by Divya, Lakshmi Shriya and Isha. The ensemble offered its final salutations through a Mangalam on Sri Rama. BKM President Thiru Ramachandran expressed his appreciation for Rathna Kumar’s work in the community and the four decade old bond between her and BKM. He hoped that BKM’s gesture will be one small step in helping the Anjali Center get back on its feet. Vijaya Ramachandran, Vice President Mani Subramanian, and Treasurer Priya Chandru were on hand to felicitate Rathna Kumar and the Anjali Dance Company. As a member of the audience commented at the end of the show - “it was a very classy performance”.

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COMMUNITY BY KHUSHBOO KAMNANI

HOUSTON: On the evening of

November 22, 2017, the Chinmaya Yuva Kendra (CHYK) group in Houston rejoiced at the annual event of Chyksgiving. Traditionally, Chyksgiving involves discussions based on verses from texts such as the Bhagavad Gita and Sadhana Panchakam. However, to make this year unique, CHYK’s very own Brahmacarini Shweta Chaitanya and Chinmaya Houston’s Acarya, Pujya Gaurang Uncle, joined the gathering to make the evening memorable and special for all. Brahmacarini Shwetaji elevated the evening by explaining the true essence of friendship, an aspect that everyone in life has to be thankful for. She emphasized the three types of friendship one can have: the first type that is derived from being in proximity to someone; the second that stems from sharing similar interests as another person; and, the third type in which a Chyk can totally identify himself or herself with another person. The Brahmacarini elaborated on the three categories with striking examples. Siblings were an example of the first category; can growing up with a brother or sister mean that he or she is your

December 01, 2017

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Chyksgiving Celebrates True Friendship

Photo: Yuthika Gundamaraju

best friend? Not necessarily. There is no guarantee that the sibling will behave as a friend later in life or be one to count on just because of growing up in a shared space. The second category focused on being friends with someone who came with an entourage. Two friends in the group may share a special bond, but one invariably finds nothing else in common with the rest of the group. After reflecting upon those two common categories, the Chyks recognized that few were the true friends in their virtual and real lives. Brahmacarini Shwetaji then beautifully spelled out the quali-

ties of a third category of selfless friendship from the viewpoint of sacrifice and love. Could there be such a friend who would love and uplift you no matter what the circumstances? Yes, that friend is no other than Ishvara. Shwetaji gave an example of Sudama’s unweathering devotion and love to Sri Krishna Bhagavan. Sudamaji was Sri Krishna’s dear friend during their years of studies at Sandeepany ashram. Eventually, they parted ways and led their own lives. After many years of financial hardship, coaxed by his wife, Sudamaji undertakes a journey to Dwaraka to seek not just the help

of Sri Krishna Bhagavan, but truly more to share his great love for the friend he revered all along. When Sudamaji arrived at his palace, Bhagavan becomes so overcome with emotion at the sight of his dearest friend that the Lord Himself does a Pada Puja of Sudamaji with his own tears. Shri Krishna Bhagavan then proceeded to bless Sudamaji with all that the latter needed. Such is the result of love and devotion to everyone’s best friend, Ishvara. After that satsang which was great food for thought, the

Chyks feast enjoyed a homecooked Thanksgiving meal made with love and friendship. Pujya Gaurang Uncle joined to meet all the Chyks and encourage their progress. As the evening concluded with gurudakshina offered to Chinmaya Guru Parampara, the Chyks carried home the special message of God as their best friend. For more information on Chinmaya Mission Houston and its activities visit www. chinmayahouston.org or call Jay Deshmukh 832-541-0059 or Bharati Sutaria 281-933-0233

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16 December 01, 2017

COMMUNITY

Ashna Kataria Weds Rohan Buntval

The newlyweds with their parents and siblings. From left, Pratima Buntval, Arya Kataria, Sangeeta Dua, the newlyweds, Karan Buntval, Amit Kataria and Narsim Buntval. Photo: Jawahar Malhotra

BY JAWAHAR MALHOTRA

ANGLETON, TX: You can tell

how deeply two people are in love when they still remember not just how they met, but even the date and other memorable dates that came along. And it helps if you are as intense a person as Ashna Kataria is. She remembers the night of Monday, December 9, 2013 when she met Rohan Buntval. She was ready to go to bed, when her friends texted her to come to the library. Her roommate Melissa asked why she was getting ready and she teasingly replied “because I might meet the love of my life today.” Rohan usually studied at home, but a mutual friend, Mustafa Jawad set them up and they met at 2:30am that night! Two months later, they finally went on their first date on Friday, February 2, 2014 and realized there was a spark. Two and a half years later, on Thursday, July 7, 2016, surrounded by friends on a boat on Lake Travis, Rohan surprised her by popping the question. With the help of their parents, the couple began planning their wedding in India, paid deposits and made arrangements for clothes, with plans to go there in August to finalize everything. “Then Hur-

ricane Harvey hit and everything came to a stop,” recalled Sangeeta Dua, the bride’s mother. “We decided then to move the event here and started pursuing venues and vendors in earnest.” But in October Ashna’s 93 yearold dadaji (paternal grandfather) Sanval Dass Kataria had a heart attack and was hospitalized. The distressed family thought of postponing the wedding, but dadaji objected and insisted that the wedding go on as planned. He became stable and was discharged from the hospital, only to stumble while coming home from the grocery store, and fell. He never recovered and passed away on Monday, November 13, just days before the wedding. But his last wish was that the wedding go on and he be remembered joyfully in the festivities. The wedding was held on Saturday, October 25 at the Magnolia Manor of the Springs Event Venue in Angleton, about an hour south of downtown Houston. The groom rode a white horse and came with his baratis and the Hindu ceremony was conducted by Pandit Pradeep Pandey (of the Siddhivinayak Temple on Hillcroft) under the gazebo, with many relatives and friends of both sides from India, Hong Kong, Australia, Con-

necticut and other places taking part. The reception was held inside the two-story banquet building with the large chandelier and indoor second-floor observation walkabout. Family friends Arun and Vinni Verma provided the party favors for every guest and large trays of dry fruits for Rohan’s family. Ashna Kataria, 23, was born in Norwalk, Connecticut and raised in Houston. She attended the University of Texas at Austin where she majored in quantitative finance with a minor in psychology. She is currently an insurance underwriter with AIG in Houston. Ashna is the granddaughter of Sheela Kataria and the late Sanval Dass Kataria and Dr. B.L. and Sunita of New Delhi. Her father Amit Kataria has his own IT firm, Network Guru and her mother Sangeeta Dua is a well-known media personality and a Somatologist and Aesthetic Instructor, running a beauty training center. They have a younger son, Arya, 16. Rohan Buntval, also 23, was born and raised in South Plainfield, New Jersey and also in Bangalore. He received a Bachelors in mechanical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin and works at Sulzer in La Porte. Rohan is the grandson of the late Hanumantha and Laxmidevi Bhat Buntval and Srinivas and Padmavathi Shenoy. His father Narsim Buntval has a BSc in Electronics & Communications, a Masters in Computer Science and an MBA in Finance & Marketing and his mother Pratima Buntval is an accountant who worked at Motorola and at Investment banks in New York. They both currently live in Manipal, India helping needy and poor through an NGO. Their younger son Karan is in Bard College at Simons Rock, MA.

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 01, 2017 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


COMMUNITY

December 01, 2017

17

Arya Samaj of Greater Houston Volunteers at Interfaith Ministries Thanksgiving, Meals on Wheels Service

BY KANIKA TALWAR

H

OUSTON: On Thanksgiving Thursday, November 23, 7.30 AM both the Arya Kishore Mandal (AKM) youth (40) and the adults of Arya Samaj’s AKM (30) celebrated Thanksgiving in the best way possible: by working together to help, serve other people. They volunteered at Interfaith Ministries’ yearly event called Meals on Wheels for seniors across greater Houston area, as they have been for many years now. The air that morning was full of chilly wind and foggy exhales, but the spirit of Thanksgiving and kindness was warmer. The volunteers, under guidance of Interfaith’s Brandi Legit started out by setting up tables with bright tablecloths to organize the food for the deliverers, which was a little different than what AKM usually does at this event. Rather than delivering the meals to houses, everyone split up into groups at the actual site of the event. Some youth helped direct people on where to park, some passed out meals to the volunteers going to drop them off at houses, and others assisted kids in making Thanksgiving cards for the receivers of the meals. Each of these “meals” included one hot meal, one cold meal, a carton of milk, plastic silverware, and a lovingly handmade card. AKM group of 70 volunteers put in about four hours do-

ing this work, and throughout, every single person was constantly moving around to fulfill their own roles, so that the whole system became like one large well-oiled machine. As they began wrapping up around noon, the volunteers took down the tents and consolidated their resources to make sure nothing went to waste. It was so inspirational to see how many people came out voluntarily on Thanksgiving to help those in need at this wonderful event. Even dogs were out strolling with their owners, enjoying the lively morning. There was constant music in the background to keep the beat going, and the coffee and warm doughnuts kept everyone’s energy up. The hours

Photos: Aditya Talwar

passed quickly, and as everyone’s enthusiasm and vigor began warming the air, it transformed into a bright and beautiful sunny day. In the end, AKM made sure to take a group picture, as always, to commemorate the annual tradition. Next year, we hope to keep this momentum going and see even more good people who want to show their true thanks to the community by giving back at Meals on Wheels. Earlier, morning was started by Interfaith’ s Vice President Warren Wenner and Acharya Surya Nanda of Arya Samaj of Greater Houston reciting a Thanksgiving prayer to all the volunteer from great Vedas in Sanskrit for the community.

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY,DECEMBER 01, 2017 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


18 December 01, 2017

EDITORIAL/COMMENTARY Where is Our Acchi Chai?

Beware Mobocracy

From Shri Rajput Karni Sena roughing up Sanjay Leela

Bhansali in January to the Padmavati sets being vandalised in March, it has been clear for many months now that a militant group of protesters was set on making trouble for this ambitious Rs 180 crore extravaganza. Government machinery from Rajasthan to the capital has had plenty of time to squash the thuggery, to make it clear that it stands solidly with the film industry and that only CBFC certifies films in this country. Instead, in a situation sadly reminiscent of how government lethargy allowed Dera Sacha Sauda followers to wreck mayhem in Panchkula, authorities have allowed Padmavati’s foes to spread fanatical fires from state to state, north to south. The upshot is that Karni Sena’s Rajasthan president now says they will do to Deepika Padukone what Lakshman did to Shurpanakha, they will cut her nose. In threatening to behead Bhansali, it behaves as an Islamic State spinoff. If IS imitators can sabotage one of the biggest Bollywood releases of the year, involving artists with the most glittering credentials, that too at a time when the industry is struggling against dropping footfalls, it’s a ghastly failure of Make in India. Over in Islamabad the government is set to succumb to religious fanatics demanding the removal of a minister, because a recent law had no reference to Prophet Muhammad. India must not go down this path. But this requires enforcing the rule of law firmly, not indolently. Provisions like the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act and IPC Section 506, where anyone who threatens to cause death or grievous hurt can be imprisoned up to seven years, should be brought to bear on felons. Unfortunately the opposite message is being sent as the UP government asks I&B ministry to defer Padmavati’s release, the Maharashtra tourism minister demands a ban on the film, and Rajasthan’s social justice and empowerment minister says it should be cleared by the Karni Sena. I&B minister Smriti Irani must show her mettle now, and do justice by India’s hardworking and outstanding film industry. If this cannot be done, then in order to ensure mobocracy doesn’t wind Bollywood down entirely Parliament ought to pass a law – call it the ‘Protection of Patron Saints of the Indian Republic Act’ – that publishes a negative list of revered personalities Bollywood is not allowed to film. That would have the virtue of at least clarifying matters. -- Times of India

BY CHETAN BHAGAT

T

his article is about tea. Rather, it is about a mini-national crisis: the lack of a decent cup of tea at most Indian public places. It is something i have felt for decades and am finally venting about here. I must apologise to those who find this a relatively lighter issue to write about. After all, there are other grave national emergencies. There is a song and dance Bollywood movie that people are ready to kill for. There’s pollution in Delhi that won’t go away, even if you only allow cars with prime-numbered licence plates. There’s also the economy which, depending on whether you love or hate Modi, is in great or terrible shape. There are state elections, where sex tapes that show no sex and have no wrongdoing are being leaked. Sure, we can talk about all that weightier stuff. However, the great Indian bad tea crisis is no joke either. It affects millions of Indians. It is a matter of national shame. The exact issue is this – why can’t we get a decent cup of boiling hot, brewed tea at our airports or offices? Ask any Indian how he or she likes his or her tea. They will tell you chai has to be brewed and boiled for a few minutes, with water and a small amount of milk. Sounds simple enough, isn’t it? No sir. Go to any airport in the country, and try to get a cup of tea like you make at home. You won’t get it. Instead, what you will get is a disgusting, synthetic version. It will contain coagulated milk powder and a tea bag with an ugly thread hanging out. The temperature will be lukewarm to start with and refrigerator-cold by the time you manage to finish half a cup. The same is the case in most modern offices. The tea we get in our so-called high-end places is disgusting. It tastes and looks like leftover water in the sink with sugar added. All this is happening in a country where tea is a life force. Indians don’t just love tea; they can’t live without it. Tea for Indians is like blood or hormones or enzymes or whatever fluid your body needs to function. And yet, you have seen them – the thousands of groggy-eyed people at

Uday Deb

any airport every morning. As they take those godforsaken early morning flights, they beg for tea. You have been there too – at one of those shops with a noisy tea-machine that spews out lukewarm dirty water, laden with too much sugar. To have a bad cup of tea in the morning is to ruin your day. It creates an existential crisis, making you question the entire purpose of living. Even on the plane in ‘full-service’ airlines, they drop warm water in in your cup. They then give you a milk powder packet that bursts when you open it, blasting white powder all over your clothes (maybe that happens only to me). Finally, they give you something that should have been made illegal long time ago – a pathetic teabag with the thread that’s probably there to strangle yourself. How have we as a nation allowed ourselves to get here? If a song and dance film can launch nationwide protests and cause chief ministers to write letters, how do we tolerate bad tea every day? You, the people who work in modern offices or travel from airports, does your blood not boil when a bad cup of tea is shoved in front of you in a soggy paper cup? Do you not want to smash that machine that makes more noise than a diesel auto, only to throw out warm waste water? How can we as Indians look at each other in the eye when we have not been able to find a solution for something as simple and vital as, tea? Sure, this isn’t important enough,

some will say. No PM will launch an “Acchi Chai” scheme to transform tea-making in public places. In government offices, enough peons exist, and face suspension if they dare give their babus bad tea. No court will ban bad tea either, even though the judges pass through those airports and see the injustice happen in front of their eyes every day. Still, it matters. We as Indians need to fight for tea. Globalisation doesn’t mean we adopt everything western or give up something we have down perfect – a hot cup of Indian masala tea. Travel anywhere in the world, a good chai (with Parle G biscuits or rusks) is unmatched as a hot beverage. If every street corner and home can get it right, then our airports and offices can too. We just need to demand it. We need to innovate here, to ensure tea remains of a certain quality. Unfortunately, like Indians often do, we have accepted mediocrity here too. Nevertheless, we should stand up for good tea. To all those entrepreneurs out there – this is a billion dollar idea. Make an automated tea machine that makes decent tea. Open fires aren’t allowed everywhere, we need machines which make tea like we like it. Piping hot, brewed and boiled. A good cup of tea is the easiest way to make Indians happy. An invigorating first cup of tea is a start to an “accha din”. Let’s fix this and not accept the machine made mediocrity served to us. Anyway, all this tea talk has made me crave a cup. Wanna join? -- Times of India

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INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 01, 2017 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


COMMUNITY

December 01, 2017

19

Vedic Spirituality in a Modern, Idyllic Setting to Train the Restless Mind wing, with classrooms opening to each corridor for the 600 kids who attended classes each weekend and there are always many more programs being offered and planned. Just over two weeks ago, on November 11, Acharya Gurang Nanavaty of

BY JAWAHAR MALHOTRA

C

HANTILLY, VA: On a rise, just off Pleasant Valley Road, Route 609, a modern, two-story building catches your eye. It could just as well be a corporate building for many of the IT companies which have sprung up all across the Washington DC area, but the swing sets and the fenced in play area in the back give it a kid friendly appeal. And the signs for Chinmaya Blossoms Pre-School give it away, just as you catch the building’s front entrance proclaiming it as Chinmaya Somnath. In the midst of several places of worship and within walking distance of the newly inaugurated BAPS Swami Narayan Temple, the Chinmaya Somnath is a structure built to impress, surrounded by 210 parking spaces and plenty of land to grow into. It is a $14 million project that was inaugurated with a murthi stapna (deity installation) on June 15, 2014. It is part of the four chapters of the Chinmaya Mission Washington Regional Center, with the other three in Silver Springs, Maryland, Frederick, Maryland and Richmond, Virginia. The Somnath center is perhaps the CMWRC’s most ambitious project in the rapidly expanding town of Chantilly, some 25 miles to the west of Washington, DC. It has focused on a growing need for young Indian families where both parents are busy professionals, to find good pre-school day care for their young children and offers a thriving Bala Vihar (Children’s House) weekend school program for pre K to 12th graders. On this sunny, mild Fall day, the CS Treasurer, Prakash Soman, who just happened to be there, gave a guided tour of the center, which is certainly spacious and impressive with the clean and uncluttered design of its rooms. On the second floor, a large gathering space offers access to the auditorium on one side, with the dining hall and warming kitchen on the other and two large meeting rooms to the far side, on either side of the garlanded portrait of Swami Chinmayananda, the spiritual guide of the Chinmaya Missions founded by his devotees in Indian in 1953. Since then, over 300 missions have opened worldwide. The vast auditorium holds a large idol of Shiva behind sliding panels, flanked by large framed and garlanded portraits of Swami Tapovan Maharaj and Swami Chinmayananda. It can accommodate 500-seats and has a wide stage and state-of-the-art sound and audio-visual systems. The dining hall can accommodate 250 people and on one wall, a giant 12 ft high by 24 ft wide mural painted by Shambhu Chapekar in 1991depicts Swami Chinmayananda with palms folded in meditation in front of a large Om amidst a star burst and a mountain top. “The painting shows the panatham with the five arches representing the senses opening to the outside to gather information,” explained So-

the Chinmaya Mission of Houston visited to give a discourse on “Quiet Alert and Vigilant Self”. With over 400 families supporting the center and many more moving to the area each year, Soman said the center is already seeing the need to grow.

The Chinmaya Somnath Center is located on a rise off Blue Springs Road in Chantilly, Virginia, about 25 miles from Washington, DC

The modern design of the 3 year-old building gives it a campus feeling

The first floor lobby opens up to a large second floor hall that accesses the auditorium and dining hall

A large stone image Shiva is located off the far side of the auditorium, behind sliding panels, flanked by large framed pictures of Swami Tapovan Maharaj (left) and Swami Chinmayananda (right).

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On one wall of the dining hall is a giant mural painted by Shambhu Chapekar in 1991. Photos: Jawahar Malhotra

man. “Chapekar was a postmaster in Mumbai who had never before painted, but he said he was inspired, after he retired, to do this mural in his bedroom in Herndon, Virginia, not far from here. It used to hang in

the University of Maryland campus in Frostburg and Swamiji sat in front of it to give his discourses during the 4th International Spiritual Camp in 1991.” And downstairs, is the education

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20 December 01, 2017 BY ATUL VIR

GUANGZHOU, CHINA: I am

once again in Guangzhou to attend the Canton Fair, the world’s largest exhibition held twice a year in modern, metallic, space-age buildings. Covering about 13 million square feet with more than 60,000 booths, the exhibition showcases the latest products and technology that China has to offer the world. There will be about 250,000 visitors in attendance, here to buy products that will represent a significant part of global trade. I am appreciative of the logistical arrangements the Chinese have made for hotels, buses to ferry us to the show, meals achieved by the meticulous study of western standards of efficiency. We are stopped at an entry gate and let in in groups of 1000 at a time. The next batch waits patiently while we go through a security check. My mind wanders back to the first time I visited the Canton Fair about 20 years ago. Only two numbers come into focus: 500 million; 20 years. The first number represents the people that have entered the middle class. The second number represents the years it has taken them to get there. It happened in front of my eyes, surprising me each time I visited China on business, now more than 40 times. These changes have been observed by everyone who has visited China. It is nothing short of a miracle, whether we are talking about the modern roads and highway system rivalling any western country, the new bullet train system, with new tracks and railway stations that look like airports, new bridges, culverts, viaducts, lighting systems and more. My thoughts invariably lead me to compare this to India. Two peoples, with similar traditional values, thousands of years of history, respect for family and elders, but separated by the Himalayas. Apart from Chinese scholars who came to study Buddhism about 2000 years ago and adopted his teachings, ordinary Chinese know about India only through movies. People over 60 know the song from Raj Kapoor’s 1951 hit,

TRAVEL Mr. Modi, Tear Down This Wall!

The Canton Fairgrounds in Guangzhou, China

Awaara. Dangal broke through this year and now every young Chinese under 30 has seen it. It seems that no other cultural exchange has passed between our countries in the 65 intervening years. Only 300 years ago, China and India were responsible for 60% of global trade. Today, China has foreign exchange reserves of $3.5 trillion (compared to India’s $400 billion), which gives it the financial muscle to produce, export, innovate, explore, expand and be ambitious. From being a follower in technology, China now aspires to lead the world with innovation and is the largest recipient of approved patents. The high-speed rail network started only 10 years ago now has 25,000 km of new tracks and driverless trains reaching speeds of 500 km/hour are being tested. It often seems that the progress of the country is also happening at bullet train speed! While India undoubtedly has brilliant scientists, engineers, doctors and businessmen, as well as a burgeoning middle-class, about one-third of the population is still close to the poverty line. China, on the other hand, is on track to eradicate poverty by 2020 by focusing on developing the quality of life and higher standard of living for its citizens, and a radical clean-up of the environment. The only way for India to correct

the deficiency and develop fast, is to study China and take lessons from them to do so quietly, systematically and without fanfare. There are three ways to learn: • Establish an exchange program for Indian government official and bureaucrats to visit China to see how to execute public projects, including roads, airports, dams, trains, parks, utilities etc. • Increase tourism to China. The Chinese are proud of their history and take care of their historical monuments. Every neighborhood has a well-maintained free park and people take walks, do tai chi or block dancing. China is a safe country and as a foreigner I walk about openly, unescorted by a local, at any time of the day or night. Women walk about without fear and there is rule of law. Drunk drivers are punished with jail time and licenses are revoked. • Encourage students to visit on holidays or exchange programs, to learn about our largest neighbor and see how they live, witness clean roads, learn about environmental solutions on a grand scale, civic responsibility like not throwing trash on roads, jaywalking, stopping for traffic lights and standing in line to board public transport. I have done business with large state-owned companies as well as small entrepreneurial companies and visited mega cities and small towns. I have found the Chinese to be without ego or false airs irrespective of the seniority of the person. One of the most admired traits of China is that everyone is equal. While Mao Tse-tung is known for bringing communism through revolution to China, the basis of this was to have equality for its citizens. Today, while on visits to China, my driver always sits and eats at the same table with other executives and we think nothing of it. He is doing his job, as the others is doing theirs. The Chinese can be accommodating, willing to listen and be flexible in making rapid changes to my products. I am always treated with respect, and my hosts are genuinely concerned for my well-being, safety and meals. The Chinese stick to their written agreements and they will not intentionally do harm. They genuinely want to deliver the product with the commensurate quality that is

A department store in Guangzhou

A typical street scene in the city

agreed on. That does not mean that one does not need to negotiate a fair deal. It just means that if you negotiate to get the bottom price, you will get quality to match. I understand why it is so difficult for India to reach out. Apart from the loss in the 1962 conflict, there are unresolved border issues with Arunachal Pradesh at the McMahon Line, China’s support for Pakistan and One Belt One Road (OBOR) passing through disputed Kashmir. The Chinese are upset with India hosting the Dalai Lama and his alternate Tibetan government. They believe India is conspiring to break up China. But we must keep our eye on the ball. 500 million - 20 years. Scale, speed, precision. We may not like it, but we must do it on behalf of the 500 million who do not have a voice, who have nothing, who do not know the possibilities that exist. Recently, there was the border standoff at Doklam. China was building a road in a disputed area of Bhutan close to the Indian border. One has to think outside the box: why can’t

we also build a road to connect to the Chinese road? The entire border area can be declared a free trade zone conducive to trade that will benefit us and motivate us to strive harder for success. We can learn from a country worthy of our respect for their economic achievement. One day we may see bullet trains connect Beijing to Delhi in 24 hours. The crowd starts moving forward and I come out of my reverie. A Chinese man next to me, also jostling forward asks, “where are you from?” I reply “from India.” He smiles and says simply, “Happy Diwali.” I smile back and thank him. Two people, like our two countries, on opposite sides of the wall, now briefly connecting for a piece of humanness. Atul Vir is the CEO of Equator Advanced Appliances, a global white goods manufacturer based in Houston. He borrowed the title from former President Ronald Reagan’s call-out to Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev at the Brandenburg Gate in 1987 to tear down the Berlin Wall.

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 01, 2017 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


IMMIGRATION

December 01, 2017

UK Government Told to Accept High Immigration or Forget Trade Deal with India After Brexit

Lord Bilimoria attends ceremony to honor Brahmrishi Shree Kumar Swamiji at House of Commons on November 15, 2011 in London, England.

L

ONDON: Britain will struggle to sign new free trade deals with economic powerhouses like India after Brexit unless it is willing to accept high levels of immigration from these countries into Britain. That’s according to Lord Bilimoria, co-founder of Cobra beer, and one of Britain’s most well-known entrepreneurs. Bilimoria spoke to Business Insider on Friday following International Trade Secretary Liam Fox’s claim that his efforts to make Britain a great trading nation are being undermined by the unwillingness of British businesses to export. The Indian-born British businessman described Fox as “utterly unfit” to serve as International Trade Secretary and claimed that nobody “across the board” in British business “has any respect” for the Conservative minister. “Nobody takes him seriously. That’s a fact,” Bilimoria told BI. Bilimoria then described what he felt was a contradiction at the heart of the case for Brexit, in that Britain will not be able to significantly reduce inward migration — as many have Brexiteers promised — if it wants any hope of ambitious and wide-ranging free trade deals with countries like India. “What trade deals has he [Fox] actually done?” the life peer said. “The Indian high commissioner has warned that an agreement [between Britain and India] might not be in place until 2030 — and said talks haven’t even begun. “He said India will want the movement of professionals; the movement of doctors, the movement of engineers. He said both sides will benefit from this exchange. It won’t be a one-way street.” The life peer was quoting YK Sinha, India’s High Commissioner to the UK, who told the Telegraph: “You’ve all read about issues of freer mobility of professions. That is something right up there as far as India is concerned. “I’m not talking about unfettered access or unrestricted travel, I’m talking about movement of professionals, movement of doctors, technicians, engineers. I think both sides will benefit from this exchange.” -businessinsider.com

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21


22 December 01, 2017

SUDOKU

Place a Number in the empty boxes in such a way that each row across, each column down and each 9-box square contains all of the numbers from one to nine. Send us the correct answer before December 06, 2017. Email us at indoamericannews@yahoo.com or mail to 7457 Harwin Drive, Suite 262, Houston, TX 77036. Send us your solved Sudoku for your name to be published (for first three entrees only & 1 submission per month).

PUZZLES / RECIPES

Mama’s Punjabi Recipes

Gur Galef Pecans (Molasses Coated Pecans)

Solution Next Week

In the Indian northwest region, from

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Afghanistan to Uttar Pradesh, nuts and dried fruits are extremely popular, and in particular badam (almonds) which are used in religious rituals and ceremonies too. If you go further beyond the Subcontinent’s borders into Iran, Turkey and Central Asia, nuts of all types – badam (almonds), kharot (walnuts), kaju (cashews), moongfli (peanuts), pistachios (piste), almonds, apricot (khurmani) seeds, hazelnuts, cantaloupe (kharbuja) and pumpkin (petha) seeds, pine nuts (chilgoze) – are very popular in snacks or desserts. What aren’t popular – because they aren’t readily available in India – are pecans (mostly grown in the US in Texas and Georgia), macadamia nuts (mostly grown in Hawaii), chestnuts (mostly from Europe or China), hazelnuts and pili nuts (found only in the Philippines). The Chinese have recently acquired a taste for pecans which has raised their prices, but Indians still think of them like walnuts, “only sweeter, softer and easier to break” as my niece Poonam Talwar in New Delhi said when she tasted the bag I took home last year and couldn’t stop eating them. During the winter months in North India, even though they are quite expensive, nuts and mewah (dried fruits) are very often used in all types of mithai (sweetmeats) like burfi (reduced milk squares). Gajack (peanut brittle in gur (sugar cane jaggery)) is very popular and is sold in the cities by street vendors. Pecans are a rich source of dietary fiber, protein, iron and B vitamins as well as manganese, magnesium and phosphorus, with mainly monounsaturated fatty acids. They are rich in age defying antioxidants, and among other benefits are cardiovascular health, promote digestion, weight loss, inflammation reduction, skin benefits, prevention of hair loss and

stimulating hair growth. In the Southern US, pecans are often used in many recipes, like pies, cakes and cookies or simply served as a roasted snack. During the winter Holiday Season, this timely recipe will come in handy because it is fairly easy to make. Unlike walnuts, pecans do not irritate the palate and the gur coating makes them irresistible.

2. Break the gur into smaller pieces. Place a frying pan over high heat, pour in the water and when it is nice and hot, throw in the gur pieces and let them melt. 3. Add the fennel seed and stir well for 5 minutes. Test the melted gur to see if it runs a sticky ribbon when stirred and touched. 4. Turn the heat off and throw in the pecan pieces and stir well and quickly to coat them and make sure the pecans aren’t clumped together. 5. Place on a plate to let the pecans cool off; when cool place in an airtight jar so that they don’t become humid.

Ingredients: • 500gm pecan giri (shelled pecans) • 500gm gur (rock molasses) • ¼ tsp saunf (fennel seed) • ¼ cup pani (water) Directions: 1. Chop the pecans into halves so that they are easier to coat and eat.

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.

MAMA’S TIP O F THE

W

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December 01, 2017

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23

Shekhar Kapur Questions Censoring of Padmavati

Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s intention was not to create controversy says Shekhar Kapur.

our society which are very obvious

because India, as a society is in

an absolute and desperate flux,” Kapur said, while trying to lay out the context the controversy surrounding “Padmavati”. “All the fractured lines, which were drawn once, are breaking. And in the breaking of those lines, there are fractures. And so the politics that has risen around the film, not in the film, why censor the poor filmmaker. It was not his intention,” he said. Kapur claimed that he was not against censorship and freedom of speech was not complete in every sense of the word, but also recalled that he himself had to fight a long-drawn legal battle to get his

Kadvi Hawa: A Blind Farmer Strikes a Deal with the Debt Recovery Agent

In a village affected by climate

change and scanty rainfall, a blind farmer strikes a deal with the debt recovery agent to save his son from a debt trap. Gunu Baba (Ranvir Shorey) descends on the village of Mahua like the harbinger of death. As a loan recovery agent, whenever he goes to a village, he claims a few lives of the poor farmers as they commit suicide when they fail to pay back their loans. For this reason, they call him ‘Yamdoot’. A blind farmer Hedu (Sanjay Mishra) knows that his own son Mukund (Bhupesh Singh) owes

a considerable amount to the lender. He can feel Mukund’s depression and helplessness and is scared that one day he, too, will take his own life. So he lands up at the bank and asks

Gunu to waive-off the loan. But that’s like asking a lion to live off grass. However, one day, Hedu comes up with a plan wherein he tips-off Gunu whenever any of his fellow, debtridden farmers comes across some money. Ranvir Shorey as a villain appears all too human when you understand just why he is choosing to do what he does. With a thick Odiya accent and a permanent scowl on his face, he carries of his role well. Sanjay Mishra, too, is effortless in his role of a blind, worldly-wise old man. This may be one of the best performances he has given, as he hops around on

his stick thinking ways of getting his son out of the conundrum. With his dhoti and bedraggled look, just like the film’s poster, he blends into the landscape. What’s nice about the film is that filmmaker Nila Madhab Panda never tries to shove global warming in your face. The chemistry between Ranveer and Sanjay is darkly entertaining. You may even feel guilty while enjoying a moment of black humour in scenes between the two actors. For a serious film on global warming, Kadvi Hawa is non-preachy and entirely watchable. -timesofindia.com

film “Bandit Queen” released. Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s period drama Padmavati is amid controversies since January. Several Rajput communities are protesting against the film demanding a ban on its release alleging that the historical facts have been distorted in the movie. -indianexpress.com

Happy Birthday

A

cclaimed director Shekhar Kapur on Sunday questioned the ‘censoring’ of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati, while arguing that while Bhansali was a good filmmaker, he had never made political films. “I know the filmmaker, I know the film and you know the film. The intention of the filmmaker was not to create controversy. He is a great filmmaker, but he has never been a political filmmaker,” he said at a Masterclass on the sidelines of the ongoing 48th International Film Festival of India. “There are fractured lines in

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY,DECEMBER 01, 2017 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM

Udit Narayan

December 01, 1955

Boman Irani

December 02, 1959

Konkona Sen December 03, 1979


24 December 01, 2017 2nd Test: India’s Best Win, Sri Lanka’s Worst Loss BY SIDHARTH MONGA

K

OLKATA: (ESPN Cricinfo): India 610 for 6 dec. (Kohli 213, Pujara 143, Vijay 128, Rohit 102*) beat Sri Lanka 205 (Chandimal 57, Karunaratne 51, Ashwin 4-67, Ishant 3-37, Jadeja 3-56) and 166 (Chandimal 61, Ashwin 4-63) by an innings and 239 runs Virat Kohli will go to South Africa without having lost a Test series as a captain after India took an unassailable 1-0 lead in the series with their joint-biggest Test win and Sri Lanka’s biggest defeat. As Kohli crept closer to most Test wins for India, his No. 1 matchwinner so far, R Ashwin, became the fastest man to 300 Test wickets. It is not easy to keep turning up after you have wasted all the good fortune in one Test and then lost the second Test on the first day itself. Sri Lanka’s downward slide continued into the first session of the fourth day as they gift-wrapped two wickets to India, who now need two more to take an unassailable lead in the series. Beginning the day 384 behind and needing to bat about five sessions to save the Test, Sri Lanka were expected to go down, but the point of interest was whether they would make India - already resting players and playing on pitches that reduce home advantage in order to prepare for South Africa - work hard for their wickets. Lahiru Thirimanne and Angelo Mathews answered in the negative. Before that, though, Dimuth Karunaratne encountered some tough luck with a freak short leg catch from M Vijay sending him back in the seventh over of the day. Having survived 61 balls, Thirimanne then scooped a wide half-volley straight to point. Mathews soon lobbed Ravindra Jadeja straight to mid-off to end his 32-ball innings. With no hope left, Dasun Shanaka threw his bat at everything, connecting well enough for a four and two sixes, but not well enough when he skied one to end his eight-ball 17. Once given a whiff, R Ashwin was too good for Dilruwan Perera and Rangana Herath, whom he sent back for ducks in the space of three balls. Probably expecting more of the

Virat Kohli plays a strong bottom-handed whip for six, India v Sri Lanka, 2nd Test, Nagpur, 3rd day, Nov. 26, 2017

same capitulation, the first session was extended by 15 minutes to see if India could wrap the game up before lunch but Sri Lanka just about hung in to force a second session. Some of the capitulation was down to accurate and skillful bowling on a deteriorating surface, but India will be the first ones to say they have worked harder for wickets. The good bowling was evident in how Niroshan Dickwella

was forced by Ishant Sharma to play at a length ball outside off in a spell that he extracted each-way reverse swing, playing with the scrambled minds of the batsmen. Sri Lanka went into the break trailing by 260 runs. There was three-fold uncertainty at the start of the final session with two wickets standing. Would Ashwin get the one wicket he needed to reach 300? Would Sri

Lanka score the 22 required to deny India their biggest Test win and the 32 required to avoid their biggest defeat? After having scored 61, Dinesh Chandimal picked out long leg perfectly when he flicked a leg-stump half-volley from Umesh Yadav. India’s lead now was 240. Only one run was added to the total when an Ashwin carrom ball kissed Lahiru Gamage’s off stump.

The Ashes: Warner, Bancroft Seal Ten-Wicket Win BRISBANE: Australia 328 (Smith with Bancroft in Perth last month. first Test of the 1990-91 series, also Both batsmen eased themselves

141*, Marsh 51) and 0 for 173 (Warner 87*, Bancroft 82*) beat England 302 and 195 (Root 51, Bairstow 42) by 10 wickets David Warner and Cameron Bancroft resolved to offer England’s toiling bowlers no crumbs of comfort in the closing moments of the first Test at the Gabba, as they eased Australia to a crushing ten-wicket win in just over an hour’s play on the fifth and final morning. After resuming on 114 for 0 overnight, Australia’s openers resisted any temptation to gallop to the finishing line, with just 56 runs required and England’s players doubtless distracted by overnight headlines concerning Jonny Bairstow’s alleged altercation

back into the groove, seeing off another disciplined but unpenetrative burst from James Anderson and Stuart Broad before picking up their tempos against the second seamers, Chris Woakes and Jake Ball. Ball did induce the day’s solitary half-chance, an edge off Bancroft that flew wide of Alastair Cook, the solitary slip, but it was left to Bancroft to strike the winning runs off Woakes, in a three-boundary fusillade in the first over after the drinks break. Despite Australia’s justified jubilation, it was an anticlimatic end to what had been, for three and a half days, a gripping and hard-fought contest, and it was very similar, in fact, to the

at the Gabba, when England were again crushed by ten wickets despite having held the upper hand at times in a low-scoring contest. Afterwards Root rued the moments in the match when Australia got away from England. “We’re very disappointed to lose the game,” he said. “We came here fully confident that we could get a win, and for three days we were excellent. We probably missed a couple of chances with bat and ball in the first innings, where we should have maybe gone on and made that 400plus score, being four-down with 250-plus on the board, you want to make that count.”

SPORTS

P.V. Sindhu’s Gallant Fight Ends in Loss in Hong Kong

HONG KONG: PV Sindhu’s gal-

lant fight ended in agony as she suffered a second successive loss to world no. 1 Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei at the summit clash of the $400,000 Hong Kong Super Series here on Sunday. Playing her fifth straight tournament, Sindhu, who had a 3-7 headto-head record against Tai before the match, never lacked in fitness and fought throughout the match before going down 18-21 18-21 to the defending champion in a 44-minute women’s singles final here. This is Sindhu’s second loss in the four finals that she reached this season. She had lost to Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara at the World Championship final, while clinched two titles at India and Korea this year. In the opening game which lasted 21 minutes, Tai moved to a 3-0 lead early on before Sindhu made a good judgement at the baseline to log the first points. However, Tai unleashed her wide repertoire of strokes and varied the pace well to lead 7 -2. Sindhu then started to dominate the rallies by using her deep clears and drew the Taiwanese close to the net. She used her reach to catch the shuttle early and placed it in difficult positions to narrow the deficit to 6-7. A deceptive net return gave Tai a point. The Taiwanese then produced a smash on the deep backhand corner of Sindhu and moved to 10-7. Sindhu unleashed a body smash to perfection before Tai’s flat straight return bamboozled the Indian. At the break, the Taiwan had a three point advantage. After the breather ,Tai committed a couple of unforced errors at both the flanks, while Sindhu came up with a backhand return near the net to reduce the margin to 10-13 but Tai quickly recovered to extend her domination

Sindhu will have to battle exhaustion when she leads India’s challenge at Hong Kong Open.

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 01, 2017 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


December 01, 2017

25

India to Auction 21 GW of

“EV Push Will Not Reduce India’s Thirst for Fossil Fuels”: Pradhan Renewable Energy Growth NEW DELHI: India’s appetite for said, adding that the planned refinery ISLAMABAD: In order to boost conventioanl fuels will continue to is to meet the incremental demand in grow in spite of the government’s push for electric vehicles, oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan said on Tuesday, defending his ministry’s plans to build a giant refinery and petrochemicals complex by 2022 at a cost an investment of Rs 2.7 lakh crore and pitching for bringing natural gas under GST regime. “India consumes just 6% of the global primary energy at present but will account for 25% of the incremental growth,” Pradhan told an energy conclave industry said at a KPMG Energy Summit here. India needs “multi-source fuels,” to meet its growing energy needs, he said, adding there is a requirement for conventional fuels -- coal, nuclear power -- as well as renewables. “Given the market size we have and consumption pattern, we need multiple sources of energy,” Pradhan

India for fuel and energy. Pradhan said India’s per-capita petrochemical consumption is just 10 kg as against the global average of 30 kg. And the nation is import dependent to meet its petrochemical needs. “So if the petrochemical demand grows with the expanding economy, we would need domestic production.” Petrochemicals are value-added output of refining business and go into manufacturing plastics to cosmetics and many more items. Pradhan He also asked that if a highlypolluting fuel such as coal is included in the GST regime, then the lesspolluting fuel like natural gas certainly deserves a place in the new tax regime. “Coal has been included and levied with 5% GST but gas is outside GST, how fair is that,” he said. Crude oil, petrol, diesel, aviation turbine fuel (ATF) or jet fuel and

natural gas are not included in GST, which has amalgamated over a dozen indirect taxes including excise duty, service tax and VAT since it kicked in from July 1. Hence, while various goods and services procured by the oil and gas industry are subjected to GST, the sale and supply of oil, gas and petroleum products continue to attract earlier

taxes like excise duty and VAT. Unlike other industries which can take credit for any tax paid towards the furtherance of business, no credits on input GST will be available to the oil and gas industry leading to the huge additional indirect tax burden. Pradhan’s ministry had asked the Finance Ministry to consider including natural gas in GST. -- ToI

Infosys Plans New Hub with 500 Design Jobs in Rhode Island

HYDERABAD: Information

technology outsourcing firm Infosys is opening a design and innovation hub in Rhode Island and plans to add 500 jobs in the state in the next five years, company and state officials announced on Monday. Democratic governor Gina Raimondo and Infosys president Ravi Kumar celebrated with a news conference in Providence, where the hub is planned. It’s the third of at least four planned Infosys hubs in the US as part of a commitment the Bangalore, India-based company made earlier this year to hire 10,000 American workers. State officials said Infosys is eligible for an estimated $10 million in various state incentives and the average annual salary of the jobs in the state would be $79,000. “Five hundred good-paying jobs, well above the average salaries in Rhode Island,” Raimondo said. “Good-paying, family-supporting

jobs. I have a feeling there’s much more in store. They’re starting with 500, but it’s on us to make sure they fall in love with Rhode Island.” Raimondo said jobs would be at every level, with and without a college degree. Kumar said the company chose Rhode Island because of factors including its academic ecosystem and design focus, location near many of its clients in the northeast and economic incentives. One of the world’s most prestigious design schools, the Rhode Island School of Design, is located in Providence, but Kumar also cited the state’s community college network and the University of Rhode Island and Brown University. “Digital design is one of the most high-demand skills in the market,” Kumar said. He added that those skills are lacking in the United States and said Infosys plans to train workers to develop

Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo and Infosys President Ravi Kumar spoke after a news conference in Providence.

them through “a finishing school.” Among the steps the company will take is to hire design students who are oriented to physical objects and train them with digital skills, Kumar said. “We create talent pools which don’t exist today,” he said.

renewable energy production across the country, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has announced auction of up to 21 GW solar and wind capacities by March 2018. The ministry will auction total 3-4 GW wind power capacity during third and fourth rounds by March 2018 Each round will be of 1.5-2 GW each, said R K Singh, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power and New and Renewable Energy, during a media interaction in New Delhi. The government has already auctioned 2 GW wind capacity in first and second rounds this year. It has also decided to put for bidding 10 GW wind capacities each in 2018-19 and 2019-20 to meet the target of 60 GW by 2022. At present, wind power installed capacity is 32 GW. As far as solar auction is concerned, the govt is looking at auction total 17 GW capacity by March 2018. So far, 3.6 GW solar capacities have been auctioned. To meet the milestone of 100 GW of solar capacity by 2022, the Centre will go in for auction of 30 GW solar capacities each in 2018-19 and 2019-20. Singh added: “(We) will think about imposing Customs duty on solar equipment once we develop our domestic manufacturing capacity.” The Solar Energy Corporation of India will be the nodal agency for most of the auctions. Wind power tariff had dropped sharply to an all-time low of Rs 2.64 per unit during the second auction by the SECI for 1 GW projects in October. Solar power has seen a similar play where the tariff had dropped to a record low of Rs 2.44 per unit in a tariff-driven bidding earlier this year

President Donald Trump has blasted an American visa program that tech companies have heavily relied upon to temporarily bring in workers from other countries at lower wages. -- LiveMint

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