E newspaper 12162016

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Friday, December 16, 2016 | Vol. 35, No. 51

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COMMUNITY

December 16, 2016

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Charity Clinic Remembers … and Renews Commitment with Optimism

The Indian Doctors Charity Clinic founders, Board and attending physicians at the appreciation luncheon on Sunday, December 11. From left, Dr. Kiran Gandhi, Dr. Manish Gandhi, Dr. Sunita Moonat, Dr. Subodh Chauhan, Dr. K.T. Shah, Dr. Jay Raman and Dr. Suresh Moonat.

BY JAWAHAR MALHOTRA

STAFFORD: It began with vig-

or and enthusiasm to provide a brighter future for those who had nowhere to turn for immediate health needs, in a rented space in an office building off Tarneff and DeMoss on the southwest side, almost behind Fire Station 51 on Bellaire Boulevard. After giving it a lot of thought, in 1999, a group of doctors headed by the husband and wife team of Drs. Sunita and Suresh Moonat jumped in feet first into setting up the free Indian Doctors Club Clinic to take care of the needy and immediately their small three room office was swamped with patients as word got around. With donated supplies and volunteer doctors and nurses spending their Saturday mornings to treat the people who showed up, the clinic filled a void in the fabric of the Bayou City as it was completely free. With interns and other community volunteers, they even set up free check-up and vaccination camps in the parking lot. The spirit of service and the demand for care has stayed the same at the clinic – now renamed the Indian Doctors Charity Clinic – though the office has moved many years ago to the second floor of an office building at 6550 Mapleridge, across from Bellaire General Hospital near Chimney Rock and South Rice in Bellaire. It still opens every Saturday for four hours and usually 35 to 40 people get to see the attending physicians. For most of the past decade, the patients would see Dr. K.T. Shah, a gastroenterologist, who has devoted his life to serving human-

Event organizer K.C. Mehta, who also helps to manage the clinic

Clinic chief nurse Debbie Ray gets an award from Anjali Patel (left) and Bharati Desai

ity since his retirement, and also Dr. Jay Raman, a general surgeon who would assist. This past Sunday, December 11, the Indian Doctor’s Charity Clinic held its Second Annual Appreciation Lunch at the BAPS Swami Narayan Temple meeting hall. It was a virtual repeat of the same function held at the same venue last year but there were several pieces of good news that the or-

Dr. Manish Gandhi (left) presents an award to Dr. Jay Raman

ganizer Kishore C. Mehta (better known simply as KC) wanted to share with the public. Lunch was prepared and served by the Temple itself and sponsored by Sudhir and Alka Mathuria. Since Dr. Shah has been confined to a wheelchair two years ago due to an affliction of Parkinson’s disease, the Clinic has worried about its future for providing a General Practice physician. Shah has been a reliable constant, come rain or shine, and as his disease has progressed, his mobility has been slowed down, even though he still goes to the clinic. “Sometimes, when the elevator doesn’t work,” he recounted, “the volunteers - and even some patients – lift me up in the chair over the stairs!” Mehta was pleased to announce that the future looked brighter with events that unfolded over the past year. The clinic will be handled by Dr. Kiran Gandhi, who has been the assistant Director for the last two years. Other physicians and

Dr. Satish Jhingran receives an award from Indo American Charity Foundation President Nanda Vura (left) and Sushvon Guha, IACF Board Director

medical students have come forward to volunteer their time. The clinic continues to get financial support from the Indian Doctor’s Association and the Indo American Charity Foundation, which has donated the entire proceeds from its Walkathon this year to the IDCC. IDA President Manish Gandhi and IACF President Nanda Vura were at hand to present recognition awards at the luncheon. But what was exciting news was that the clinic will now be able to offer free vision care through the generosity of Dr. Ravi Chandra, an ophthalmologist who has purchased and loaned the equipment to the IDCC and will volunteer his time there. Chandra has also persuaded biotech companies to donate eye drops and glasses and is hoping to provide free or low cost cataract surgery too. Mehta also said that Dr. Priti Palvadi, a neurologist, is planning to join and see patients once a month. These services will add to the al-

ready low cost CAT scan and MRI services offered by Dr. Lucky Chopra at his center near the Medical Center and the free radiology consult that Dr. Satish Jhingran continues to provide; the deeply discounted endoscopy ($700 versus normally $3,000) that Dr. Nat Bala offers; the low cost biopsies ($50 versus $400) that Dr. Ragini Lukhia offers and the free consult that urologist Dr. Pulin Pandya provides. Dr. Shah could not help but remember his solo-letter-writing campaigns to raise funds that brought forward some generous donors, like Raju and Anjali Patel (who were in attendance) who donate $5,000 each year. It is this spirit of community-minded service – and the support of dedicated staff like Debbie Ray, Lilianna Munoz, Reggie Mercy, Emily Sierra and Ms. Coco and volunteers alike – that the IDCC sees as its key to the future.

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COMMUNITY

HOUSTON:

ISKCON 50, the 50th anniversary of the founding of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness in New York City in 1966 by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada [1896-1977], was celebrated in Houston over four consecutive days, beginning with a formal gala on Thursday, December 8 at the society’s state-of-the art neo-Vedic temple on West 34th Street. The Houston festivities were part of the second major “ISKCON 50” celebration held in the U.S. in 2016, following a Washington, D.C. gala in November which was addressed by Tulsi Gabbard, America’s first Hindu Congresswoman, along with political and interfaith leaders in the nation’s capital. The Houston gala attracted more than 340 guests from government, business, education, medicine, interfaith/religious organizations, media, and entertainment as well as visiting ISKCON leaders. Featured speakers included Dr Ravi Gupta, Director of Religious Studies at Utah State University (after being homeschooled by Krishna conscious parents, he graduated from Boise State as a teenager and became one of the youngest students to ever receive a PhD at Oxford University). Dr. Helen Ebaugh, who has taught World Religions at the University of Houston for forty years, praised ISKCON’s participation in local interfaith dialogue, and Judge R.K. Sandill of Harris County’s 127th District Court—the first district court judge in Texas of South Asian descent—commended ISKCON’s cultural and spiritual contributions in places he has lived, including Toronto, London and Houston. Also speaking were Malati Devi, a leading senior woman disciple of Srila Prabhupada who pioneered ISKCON in London and Ohio; Sesha Das, acting chairman of ISKCON’S Governing Body Commission; Joshua Greene, author of Swami in a Strange Land, a new biography on Swami Prabhupada; Huber Hutchin Robinson, General Secretary of NIOS (North Ameri-

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ISKCON 50: Four Day Celebration is a Success

Certificate presentation by the representative for Congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee and Manasi Ganga

Malati Devi

Anuttama Prabhu with the ISKCON logo Ice Sculpure Photos: Murali Santhana Concert pictures by Thejas & Gita Jayanti pictures by Geetha Ravula

can Institute for Oriental and Occidental Studies); and a representative for Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, a longtime

supporter of ISKCON-Houston. Special guests also included Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg; Pat Hallisey, Mayor of League City and his wife Janice; Dr. Catherine O’Brien, vice chancellor of San Jacinto College; David Williams, Principal at Seabrook Intermediate School; Matt Khan of Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston, who remarked, “The hospitality was exceptional and I learned a great deal about the history of ISKCON.” Also attending were Rev. Gena Davis of Houston’s grace Episcopal Church, a certified yoga teacher who incorporates yoga in her ministry; Rev. David Carter of the Unitarian Church of Wichita, Kansas; representatives of the Focolare community; board members of Houston’s Rothko Chapel; and Dr. Zahra Jamal, Associate Director of the Boniuk Institute for Religious Tolerance at Rice University. Representatives of Hindu organizations included those from BAPS, Voice of Sanatan Hinduism, Hindus of Greater Houston, ICC, the Hindu Heritage Foundation, Ashtalaksmi Temple, Sri Sita Ram Foundation, Mahatma Gandhi Library, Banke Bihari Pariwar, the Indo American Political

Gita Jayanti Judging

Godfrey Townsend

Group and the Youth Leadership Development Program (YLDP). The gala also featured art and devotional music (kirtan) by local

artists and a unique ice sculpture and rangoli (colored powder) depiction of the ISKCON logo. On Friday, December 9, a special musical tribute to the famous musician, George Harrison, was presented as part two of ISKCON 50. Joshua Greene, author also of the biography, Here Comes The Sun: The Spiritual and Musical Journey of George Harrison and acoustic guitarist/vocalist, Godfrey Townsend—who has performed with rock greats including John Entwistle, bassist of The Who; Jack Bruce, bassist and vocalist of Cream; Dave Mason, guitar/vocalCONTINUED ON PAGE

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COMMUNITY

INDIA: An 11-day celebration

on the occasion of His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 96th birthday was held at Swaminarayan Nagar, Surat. For ten days, the 400-acre celebration site became an attraction for all eyes primarily because of the extraordinary exhibitions and evening cultural programs. The cultural village was the creation of volunteers from all over India – 18,000 male and female volunteers offered their services day and night. Pramukh Swami Maharaj passed away on August 13, 2016, in Sarangpur. Volunteers put in their best to pay homage to their beloved guru in the creation of the cultural village. The festival hosted over 1.5 million visitors as well as 60,000 students and 2,000 teachers from 125 schools. The festival ground included a large entrance gate, a grand Mandir made from fiberglass and eight exhibitions showcasing Indian culture, heritage and values. Each evening, a spectacular light and sound show on the mandir itself revealed the social and spiritual significance of mandirs in our modern world. The 11-day celebration also featured a women’s cultural program, blood donation camp as well as an antiaddiction drive. During the celebration, 44 youths were initiated into sadhu-fold. The culmination of the festivities was the celebration of Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 96th birthday on December 7, 2016.

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HH Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 96th Birthday Celebration

The programs focused on Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s grand and divine social and spiritual works. Through skits, video shows, cul-

tural dances and speeches, the program portrayed Swamiji’s tireless travels for the uplift of mankind, creation of mandirs like Swaminarayan Akshardham and disaster-relief programs conducted by BAPS. Pramukh Swami Maharaj traveled from large cities to remote villages to foster love, peace, harmony, spirituality and faith within individuals - irrespective of race,

class, creed or color. His inspiring call, “In the joy of others, lies our own...” reflects the spirit of his life and work. The birthday celebration was a celebration of his life and work as a humble servant of society who spent his life using the power of his inner goodness to lift others up. The birthday celebration was also unique in itself. The date (December 7), day (Wednesday), Tithi as per Hindu calendar (Magsar Sud atham) and Nakshetra at the time of his birth in 1921 matched exactly today. The Chief Minister of Gujarat, Shri Vijay Rupani, praised the personality of Pramukh Swami Maharaj and his mammoth contributions for the welfare of Gujarat. He also announced that the upcoming International sports stadium in Palanpur area of Surat would be named as Pramukh Swami International Stadium. Shri Amitbhai Shah, President of BJP, spoke glowingly about how he had experienced peace whenever he met Pramukh Swami Maharaj. To commemorate the universal works of His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj, the Government of India paid tributes by releasing postage stamps of Pramukh Swami Maharaj and Swaminarayan Akshardham. Thereafter, His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj, the current spiritual leader of BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha, blessed the

congregation of 200,000, saying, “Pramukh Swami Maharaj lived a universal life. He worked for the all-round betterment of all, regardless of the background. His humility was unparalleled; he respected all and cared for people of all classes and denominations. He emphasized unity and family cohesion for a progressive and happy society.” In conclusion, a grand aarti was performed by the 200,000 devotees and well-wishers offering respect to Pramukh Swami Maharaj. Grand celebrations for his birthday have been planned across North America on December 11 and December 18. All readers are invited to the celebration. More details on www.baps.org About BAPS The BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS), a worldwide sociospiritual organization in Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations, is dedicated to community service, peace, and harmony. Motivated by Hindu principles, BAPS strives to care for the world by caring for societies, families, and individuals. Through a number of social and spiritual activities, BAPS endeavors to produce better citizens of tomorrow who have a high esteem for their roots - their rich Hindu culture. Its 3,300 in-

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COMMUNITY

December 16, 2016

Leadership in Chaos

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ers groping in the infinite information infrastructure of the modern world often find themselves to be discouraged and confused while exploring the meaning of leadership. There are so many factors that go into leadership that a single definition is impossible and differing opinions and philosophies blur the meaning further. But, just as in life our true character is revealed during times of crisis and hardship, perhaps the true meaning of leadership can be revealed by studying how leaders and organizations act during crises. This was the essence of all our discussion and dialog at the November YLDP session at Houston TranStar Transportation & Emer-

gency Management Center, and with our revered keynote speaker Judge Ed Emmett. I gained invaluable insight into what makes a leader in the political arena and how it relates to dealing with crises. While touring the Houston TranStar facility, I was in awe of the well-planned security protocols in place and the information handling capacity of this amazing facility. But, as everyone soon realized, even such a facility would not be effective without leadership. Houston TranStar is a unique emergency management facility because in addition to its technology, it allows for all emergency services (i.e First Responders, local Police departments, and Homeland Security) to coordinate their efforts for efficient management of crises. And, as Judge Ed Emmett explained, it was his job

as the leader to trust Houston TranStar and relay key information to the general public to maintain calm. Thus, during our Q&A session with Judge Emmett, I realized that leaders are responsible for the people delivering the results versus the results themselves. That is why mutual trust, cooperation, and communication are such important characteristics of leadership. But most importantly, I learned that no matter what the context, leadership is a service and acting as such is the essence of leadership…and life. Thanks to the cultivating dialog with Judge Emmett and touring Houston TranStar through YLDP, my fellow YLDP members and I finally felt like we had taken our first confident step in understanding the true meaning of leadership.

ISKCON 50 Celebration a Success CONTINUED FROM PAGE

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ist of Traffic; and Alan Parsons Project—presented 90 minutes of fascinating audio/visual clips from George’s childhood through his musical and spiritual journey, and that, along with the superb music, earned them a standing ovation. Besides George Harrison’s love of India, the sitar, Ravi Shankar and his studying meditation in Rishikesh, George met ISKCON’s founder-acarya Srila Prabhupada, chanted the Hare Krishna mantra, put spirituality into his songs, donated $19,000 for the printing of Krshna: the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and he also donated the property that is now the site of Bhaktivedanta Manor, ISKCON’s largest temple in Europe. On Saturday, December 10, Gita Jayanti—the appearance of the Bhagavad-gita—was honored as the third part of the ISKCON 50. Srimad Bhagavad-Gita is India’s timeless classic which inspired Mahatma Gandhi, and is also known as the book that caused a non-violent revolution that rocked the world! Saturday marked the actual day that Lord Krishna spoke Bhagavad-gita to His great friend and disciple— Arjuna. Co-sponsors of the auspicious event were Ashirwad a blessing-A Lifestyle Vedic

School, the Mahatma Gandhi Library of Houston and Voice of Sanatan Hinduism. A Bhagavadgita doll display by Amani Krishnaswami, featuring Krishna’s universal form, the dice match and battlefield of Kurukshetra was presented. All 18 chapters were read—700 shlokas—over four hours, and a fire sacrifice or yajna was performed. Chapter summaries were provided by ISKCON’s His Holiness Bhakti Sundar Goswami and His Grace Radhika Raman Das (Dr. Ravi Gupta). A children’s competition—“Gita Fest”—was held, with kids participating from ‘Ashirwad a blessing,’ the Ashtalakshmi temple, Goswami Academy, ISKCON Sunday School and many kids from the Houston area. Bhakti Sundar Goswami, Sesa Das, Radhika Raman Das and Mrs. Geetha Ravula served as the judges. 25 kids participated in three categories, with three winners in each category. Each child received a participants’ certificate. In the evening HH Hanumat Presaka Swami and Sesa Das discussed the essence of the Bhagavad-gita and its application in daily life. ISKCON’s Vrinda Boodram coordinated the event, which also featured kirtan by members of the ISKCON youth traveling bus party. Sunday, December 11, day four of ISKCON 50’s celebration—a

tribute to Srila Prabhupada— featured talks by His Holiness Bhakti Sundar Goswami and His Holiness Hanumat Presaka Goswami and ended with a special dance, slide show & contemporary rendition of Markine Bhagavat Dharma, Srila Prabhupada’s poem on board the boat - the Jaladuta, performed by second generation ISKCON youths, Swathi Murali, Ramdas Shingdia and Gaura Klein. Everyone understood Srila P r a b h u p a d a ’s importance to ISKCON and the world. ISKCON of Houston 1320 West 34th Street, Houston, TX 77018 www.iskconhouston.org

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COMMUNITY

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HOUSTON:

When you hear about famous Bollywood personalities such as Priyanka Chopra, Ashutosh Gowariker, and Boman Irani what comes to a reader’s mind? The recent super-hit Marathi movie “Ventilator” is very different. All three have acted in this movie and Priyanka has beautifully sung a great song to promote her latest movie “Ventilator”. The director and producer has focused on acting and dialog delivery and other very important elements of film making to get a beautiful message across. Ashutosh has proved himself as an effective actor (in the role of Raja Kamerkar) in this movie along with several famous Marathi stars, Jitendra Joshi as

Prasanna Kamerkar, Sulabha Arya as Manda (Prasanna’s Mother), Sukanya Kulkarni-Mone as Sarika (Prasanna’s Sister), Viju Khote as Shirish Appa, Sanjiv Shah, Nilesh Divekar, Rahul Solapurkar, Shashank Shende, Achyut Potdar, Usha Nadkarni as Akka, Nikhil Ratnaparkhi as Pritam, Swati Chitnis as Indu, Satish Alekar as Bhau (Raja’s father), Deepak Shirke as Aatma Dhadke, Boman Irani as Dr. Shroff, Priyanka Chopra as herself. Simply an amazing movie that revolves around “family” and bound to touch your hearts and make you laugh also. What is a “family” and what is a “relationship”? Ventilator is another Marathi film of deep emotional worth, which challenges our long-standing notions of the joint family system. It promotes

true Indian values and how Indian families are. This is a “must watch” movie for all age groups if you get a chance! “Ventiltor” is Directed by Rajesh Mapuskar who has directed the famous movie “Ferrari ki Sawaari” and also worked on other famous movie such as “3 idiots”, “Lage Raho Munna Bhai”, and “Munna Bhai MBBS”. Ashutosh Gowarikar who is in the lead role in this movie needs no introduction as he has Lagaan (2001), Swades (2004), Jodhaa Akbar (2008), What’s Your Raashee (2009), Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey (2010) and Mohenjo Daro (2016) under his belt. Yet he has a very friendly and down to earth personality which is probably his recipe of his massive success. Priyanka Chopra also does not need an introduction as an Indian actress, singer, film producer, philanthropist, and the winner of the Miss World 2000 pageant (e.g. Priyanka Chopra acted as Kashibai in epic historical romance film “Bajirao Mastani” in 2015.). Truly multi-talented personality. One of India’s highest-paid and most popular celebrities, Chopra has received numerous awards, including a National Film Award and five Filmfare Awards. In 2016, the Government of India honored her with the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award, and Time magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world. She has sung the “Baba” (i.e. Father in Marathi) song in Marathi extremely well which will instantly remind you about your own Father. Ventilator Marathi Movie was screened by Houston Maharashtra Mandal (HMM) on December 11, at Palladium Theatre. More than 300 people attended this movie screening which began with a video prepared by HMM showcasing their 14 super hit events of the year and thanking all their attendees, sponsors, volunteers, supporters and committee members. Houston Maharashtra Mandal (HMM) has been screening Marathi Movies, organizing Marathi nataks/dramas/ dances/musical shows, celebrating Indian festivals, organizing sporting events, organizing social services/community services events in the City of Houston for the past 40 Years! In 2016, Sukanya Kulkarni-Mone who has acted as Sarika (Prasanna’s Sister) in the “Ventilator” Movie had also acted in the famous “Selfie” Natak/Drama hosted by Houston Maharashtra Mandal (HMM). HMM 2016 President, Megha Ozarker thanked all the attendees for all their massive support this year and urged attendees to do the same for HMM 2017 President, Anjou Sathe Keller and her team. The HMM 2017 has already planned very exciting events and the first event will be HMM Sankarat Event in January 2017.

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COMMUNITY

Asia Society Kicks Off 2017 Tiger Ball at CGI’s Residence

Group Shot: Indian Consul General Anupam Ray and his wife Amit (extreme right) opened their residence to the Asia Society to hold a kickoff party for the upcoming Tiger Ball next March which will highlight Magnificent India. With them were Asia Society President Bonna Kol (center), honorees Sushila and Dr. Durga Agrawal and the other co-chairs and honorary chairs.

BY JAWAHAR MALHOTRA

HOUSTON: You couldn’t have

asked for a more festive season to kickoff the preparations for the annual Tiger Ball held by the Asia Society and a cozier venue to hold the event than the residence of the Indian Consul General Anupam Ray off Chimney Rock north of Woodway. The downstairs rooms had been striped aside of their furniture for the 200 expected guests and seats and tables had been arranged in the paved backyard for a presentation from the raised patio. A sumptuous buffet dinner in the dining room awaited the guests. CONTINUED FROM PAGE

09

ternational centers out of which over support these activities of character-building. BAPS aspires to build a community that is morally, ethically and spiritually pure, and free of addictions. About Mahant Swami Maharaj His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj is the sixth and current spiritual successor of Bhagwan

But alas, Nature was fickle in its mood that night, Thursday, December 8, as the first day of a four-day long cold front and rainy weather intervened to upset the plans, but Anupam Ray and his wife Amit held their composure as plans were rearranged. Guests bundled in with overcoats, forcing the Rays to make last minute arrangements to set up racks and turn the study into an impromptu coat closet. The see-through acrylic podium and speaker system was quickly moved inside and dinner started early to allow for the delay. But when all was done, Ray was able to set to the podium and speak

to the die-hard audience about the upcoming Tiger Ball, slated for Friday, March 3, 2017, headlined “Magnificent India”. As usual, the Ball will be held at the Society’s much-admired building on 1370 Southmore in the Museum District, with the crowd spilling out into the front lawn, as in years past. Ray stated that this epoch is the Century of Asia and spoke with pride of the growth of India into a world super power and its supercharged economy, currently the world’s fastest growing. He acknowledged the contributions of the Asia Society in promoting Indian culture and arts and lauded the upcoming Tiger Ball for focusing on India. Agrawal added that he appreciated the Asia Society’s help in establishing India House, of which he was a founding force. Bonna Kol, Asia Society Houston President, said she was looking forward to working with the community to make the Ball a success and acknowledged how involved the Indian community has been with many programs at the Center. The Ball will honor Sushila and Dr. Durga Das Agrawal and have as co-chairs Gina and Devinder Bhatia; Dr. Marie & Vijay Goradia and Angela and Chowdary Yalamanchili. Honorary co-chairs will be Drs. Renu and Suresh Khator; Raj and Jugal Malani; Nalini and Dr. Virendra K. Mathur and Nidhika and Pershant Mehta.

Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 96th Birthday Celebration Swaminarayan. He was ordained a swami by Yogiji Maharaj in 1961 and named Sadhu Keshavjivandas. As he was appointed the head (Mahant) of the Mandir in Mumbai, he became known as Mahant Swami. His devout, humble and service-focused life earned him the innermost blessings of Yogiji Maharaj and Pramukh Swami Maharaj. Mahant Swami Maharaj travels throughout the world inspiring people through his insightful spiritual discourses and disciplined conduct. His virtuous lifestyle and profound devotion to Bhagwan Swaminarayan and gurus are ideals toward which devotees strive. Mahant Swami Maharaj became the guru and President of BAPS upon Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s passing in 2016.

About Pramukh Swami Maharaj Pramukh Swami Maharaj was the fifth spiritual successor of Bhagwan Swaminarayan. Under his leadership, BAPS grew into an international spiritual and humanitarian organization with over 3,300 centers worldwide. He dedicated his life to the well-being of others, traveling throughout the world to foster love, peace, harmony, righteousness, faith in God, and service to humanity. With genuine care and compassion, he reached out to all members of society irrespective of class, color, or age. Recognized and respected as one of India’s greatest spiritual teachers, he lived by and promoted the principle: “In the joy of others, lies our own.”

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COMMUNITY

December 16, 2016

17

Sanjay Ramabhadran Honored by the American Jewish Committee

H

OUSTON: Since 1981, AJC Houston has presented The Human Relations Award annually to a civic or business leader demonstrating exceptional work in making a difference in Houston and in preserving America’s democratic heritage. On December 12, 2016, AJC honored Tony Chase,

Gilbert Garcia and Sanjay Ramabhadran with the Human Relations Award celebrating Houston’s diversity. The Distinguished Public Service award was presented to Dr. Stephen Klineberg for his pioneering work on the Houston Survey. The event at the Houstonian fea-

tured over 200 guests - the Who’s Who of Houston including Mayor Pro Tem Ellen Cohen, former Mayor Annise Parker, former Sheriff Adrian Garcia, Ambassador Schechter, Consul General of India Dr. Anupam Ray, METRO Chair Carrin Patman, Houston First Chair David Mincberg, State Representative Elect MaryAnn Perez, IACCGH President Joya Shukla, IACCGH Executive Director Jagdip Ahluwalia, IAPAC President Dr. Karun Sreerama and Consul Generals from multiple countries. Co-Chairs Collin Cox, Roland Garcia, Gordon Quan and Marc Melcher spoke about the honorees contributions to Houston. Past recipients of the award include Shell Oil, Governor Ann Richards, Ambassador Schechter, Mayor Whitmire, Ambassador Chase Untermeyer, Ric Campo and Welcome Wilson Sr. The American Jewish Committee - Houston, founded in 1946 is a respected voice in the local, political, religious, and academic arenas. As it works to protect human rights around the world, it is equally committed to strengthening the community and enriching the quality of life for all of our residents.

Tributes Paid to Late. Selvi J. Jayalalithaa, Tamil Nadu CM, by MTS, BKM, and TNF

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“IT HAPPENS ONLY IN INDIA” BY VIVEK NATARAJAN

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EARLAND: The Indian state of Tamil Nadu lost its incumbent Chief minister, Selvi J. Jayalalithaa a week back. Many Houston Tamil people personally felt the loss and organized a community wide tribute to Amma as Late. Selvi J. Jayalalithaa was known. The event was organized by Bharathi Kalai Manram (BKM), Sri Meenakshi Temple Society (MTS) and the Tamil Nadu Foundation (TNF Houston Chapter) and was held on December 11, in the visitor’s center of Sri Meenakshi Temple. The event started with a minute of silence. Vice consul, Indian Consulate of Houston, Devendar Kumar spoke and paid tributes to Amma. Then community leaders S. Narayanan (MTS), Tupil Narasiman (MTS and BKM), Govindan

Somaskanthan (TNF), Dr. Thiruvengadam Arumugam (BKM), Dr. Padmini Ranganathan (MTS), Anantha Aiyer (Tamil Stage creations), Dr. Kas Saranathan (Meenakshi Theatres and BKM), Sam Kannappan (MTS and GOPIO), and Srikanth Venugopalan (MTS and TNF) spoke. All the speeches were tinged with emotion and sense of personal connect with the departed leader. The overarching theme was the achievement of Selvi JJ as a leader in a typical male dominated society, her fierce determination, her sense of compassion for the poor, her welfare legacy in the form of pro poor schemes, and her many talents. Later, the Bharathi Kalai Manram had its Annual general meeting in the same venue. The meeting paid tributes to great Tamil artistes who had passed away recently. The first was Sri M. Balamurali

Krishna, a renowned musician, composer, creator of ragas, playback singer, viola player, music director: in short, a multifaceted genius. His trademark voice, innovative spirit, clear diction were remembered as was his trademark song Oru Naal Poduma from the block buster Tamil movie Thiruvilayadal. The second was Sri Cho Ramaswamy, a renowned lawyer, playwright, dramatist, actor, and journalist, a man of many talents who wore many hats. His trademark wit, honesty, candidness, and clarity of thought along with his plays, and his magazine were remembered by the audience as was the fact that his contrarian but sincere views elicited respect and following in not only in Tamil Nadu but across the whole of India.

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18 December 16, 2016 Slower Growth due to Demonitization

In a first estimation of the impact of demonetization on

the Indian economy by a multilateral agency the Asian Development Bank has forecast that it expects India’s GDP growth to slow down by 0.4 percentage points to 7% in 2016. This would still put India’s growth in the current year still ahead of China. However, the despite the negative impact of demonetization on India’s short term growth in the economy is expected to sharply rebound to 7.8% in 2017. But the slowdown in Indian will have only have a minimal impact on the region as overall growth in developing Asia in 2016 will slow only by 0.1 percentage points to 5.6% in 2016. This is mainly because growth in China will stick to the previous forecast. However, unlike India China’s GDP growth will slow down from 6.6% in 2016 to 6.4% in 2017. The good news is that growth in the major industrial economies, namely United States, the Euro Area and Japan, has been stronger than expected especially in the former two. However, the reasons were very varied. While it was an upswing in consumer spending which buoyed up the US economy, it was the monetary policy which helped the Euro Area and in the case of Japan it was the external sector. Coming back to India the ADB points out that growth in the first half of the year was mainly aided by robust consumption, both private and public. But this did not help push up investments. However, the demonetization drive has derailed hopes of a consumption led pick up in the second half of the year as the demand has certainly stalled after the crash in liquidity following the move against black money. The bank expects that the small and medium sized units and agriculture would be the most impacted by the demonetization drive. However, it says that the rush of deposits into the banking sector will help pull down interest rates and give a fillip to investment in 2017. It also expects the suppressed demand in 2016 to lead to a further softening of the monetary stance which will against give a boost to investments. The other factor that will help improve growth prospects is the fact that demonetization will help more disclosure of unaccounted income and give a boost to the tax collections which will hopefully boost capital spending by the government from the next year. However, the bank also expects that consumer price inflation in India to move up from 5.4% in 2016 to 5.8% in 2017. Pyaralal Raghavan in Times of India

EDITORIAL/COMMENTARY

When My Phone Wasn’t My Wallet BY ALAGAPPAN MUTHU

Eight o’clock in the morning: I was on the train from Amritsar to New Delhi, travelling in an airconditioned coach that had about 50 other passengers, including a young medical student seated right next to me. Vendors walked up and down the aisle, selling snacks and soft drinks — the best part of travelling in an Indian train — but this morning, I took no notice of them. I also ignored the famous Punjab countryside that unfolded outside the window. You cannot, after all, relish the beauty of an uninhabited island if you are marooned there: your eyes would be fixed on the sea, looking for a passing ship or boat. And right now, I was a marooned man. No one could reach me, I could reach no one. The phone in my pocket was dead. It had gone dead, suddenly, at the unearthly hour of two in the morning, when I seemed to be the sole inmate — certainly the sole inmate awake — at the BSF officer’s mess near the Wagah border. In another three hours, a taxi was to pick me up and drop me at the Amritsar railway station, where I was to board the New Delhi-bound Shatabdi Express, departing at 6.15 a.m. At New Delhi, I was to be received by an old friend, who had planned to take me out for lunch before dropping me at the airport in time for the 5.40-p.m. flight to Chennai. The phone, alas, had everything: my train ticket, my flight ticket, and all my contacts, including the numbers of the taxi driver and the friend who was to meet me at New Delhi station. The taxi driver, fortunately, was still waiting for me outside the campus, even after having found my phone switched off despite repeated attempts to call me. When I told him about the tragedy, he calmly said, “Don’t worry. Use my phone.” All I wanted was to

reach a handful of people who really mattered, just to let them know that they should not worry in case they could not reach me — but who to call? I did not know a single number by heart. Everything was stored in my mobile, not in my mind. So I called up the only number I knew by heart — the landline at my Kanpur home — and as I had expected, the phone was off the hook. Someone had told my father many years ago that the Internet worked faster if the phone was kept off the hook and he sticks to the advice. The driver then suggested I put my SIM card in his phone — why didn’t I think of this before! — but his phone, alas, refused to read my card. I profusely thanked him anyway as he dropped me at the station, where I found that the Shatabdi Express was already gone: it departed at 5.15 and not 6.15. “There is another train that leaves at 6.15, maybe you got confused,” a helpful TTE told me. He was right. I ran to the ticket counter to get a ticket for the 6.15 train, but the queues were so long that I did not see myself making it to any of the windows before noon. I returned to the TTE and begged him to somehow put me on the 6.15 train. He said softly, “It will cost you Rs. 700. Is that okay?” When I nodded in gratitude, he said, “Once the

train comes, occupy C2 42.” The train pulled in only at 7.30. And now I was in C2 42 — a marooned man. The only one who could rescue me was the medical student seated next to me. But I found it embarrassing to scream for help without winning her trust. So I asked her if she had already operated upon cadavers. I chose to use the word cadaver, the medical term for a dead body. She not only replied in the affirmative but also excitedly opened her phone to show me pictures of cadavers she had recently worked on. We discussed death for a while, before I told her about my plight and asked her, “Mind if I use your phone for a moment to check my Facebook?” Facebook instantly transported me from an uninhabited island to civilization. But I also realized that nobody — other than the friend coming to receive me at New Delhi station — had wondered why I was not reachable. At yet at the same time, total strangers — including the bribe-taking TTE — had formed a human bridge to ensure that I reached Chennai. Today, when I look back at this episode, I wonder: what if my phone was also my wallet — as Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants it to be? -The Hindu

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December 16, 2016

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20 December 16, 2016 Alcohol and Depression

Alcoholism is a disorder that produces many similar signs and symp-

toms required for diagnosis of major depression. Although alcohol often initially causes a “good mood,” alcohol is a depression-causing drug. While no studies have shown that depression actually causes alcoholism, the two disorders are commonly seen in the same patients at the same time. Thirty to fifty percent of alcoholics, at any given time, are also suffering from major depression. What you should know about alcoholism and depression: Family history of either depression or alcoholism puts a person at increased risk for developing either illness. Alcoholism may cause a relapse in patients with depression. The depressive symptoms from alcohol are greatest when a person first stops drinking, so recovering alcoholics with a history of depression should be carefully monitored during the early stages of withdrawal. The symptoms of depression in alcoholics are greatly reduced after three to four weeks of stopping alcohol intake. A person suffering from major depression and who abuses alcohol has a much higher risk of attempting and succeeding at taking his own life: Alcohol abuse can exaggerate depression and increase impulsiveness. Alcohol is frequently detected in suicide methods involving driving a moving vehicle or overdosing. Alcohol impairs judgment, which explains its association with painful suicide methods. Because of the risk of suicide, it is critical that people suffering from major depression and abusing alcohol receive prompt medical attention. -everydayhealth.com

HEALTH

Types of Depression Unique to Women

In addition to the major types of de-

pression that affect men and women, women also suffer from unique types of depression due to their special physiology and hormones. Estrogen, the “female sex hormone,” affects more than 300 functions in a woman’s body including regulating menstrual cycles, protecting the heart and maintaining strong bones. The fluctuating levels of estrogen during menstrual cycles, pregnancy and menopause may impact mood and, in severe cases, trigger depressive episodes. Unfortunately, these types of depressive episodes in women and girls often are blamed on “being moody,” “that time of the month,” or “the change” and go untreated. It is time to get beyond stereotypes that prevent women from getting medical help: Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) can be treated or prevented — there is no reason why women need to suffer so needlessly and frequently. More than half of the women suffering from postpartum depression will experience it again with the birth of another child. It is critical to identify this danger and treat it early. Rates of suicide for women are highest during the perimenopausal years; these are tragically shortened lives, considering women now live a third of their lives after menopause. Recent research shows that women’s biology differs from men’s in many more ways than previously thought and these physical differ-

ences (such as different levels of estrogen, serotonin, cortisol and melatonin) are beginning to provide clues to why women are so much more susceptible to depression as well as a special type of depression called Seasonal Affective Disorder Stress plays a major role in depression, and it may be that women and men respond to stress differently — while women are more likely to suffer from “emotional ailments” such as depression, anxiety attacks and eating disorders, men are much more likely to act out aggressively and abuse drugs and alcohol. Women’s fluctuating hormone levels during menstrual cycles, after childbirth, and during menopause contribute to forms of depression unique to women including Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS), Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD),

Postpartum Depression, and Perimenopausal Depression. The good news is that research is helping us to understand the biological factors for depression in women and identify ways to treat and prevent it. A woman may suffer from depression at any point during her life. Like depression in men, the underlying cause of depression in women is a combination of changes in brain chemistry, stress, trauma and genetics. The major types of treatment for depression are the same for women and men. Women who have suffered sexual traumas (such as rape and incest) may want to work with a therapist who has training and expertise in this area. In addition, a woman’s unique biology may predispose her to unique forms of depression not found in men. -everydayhealth.com

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 16, 2016 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


COMMUNITY

December 16, 2016

New Breakthrough in Understanding Obesity, Metabolic Syndrome

Dr. Atul Chopra

HOUSTON: The research work of a pioneer-

ing medical geneticist has led to the discovery of a new hormone that could combat metabolic diseases like diabetes, metabolic syndrome and obesity. The research was recently heralded in a November 2016 New York Times article entitled “The Thin Gene” by Pagan Kennedy, featuring the work of Dr. Atul Chopra, a medical geneticist at Baylor College of Medicine. In December 2014, Dr. Chopra was named the Caroline Wiess Law Scholar, Assistant Professor of Molecular and Human Genetics,

Molecular and Cellular Biology at Baylor. He is also an Attending Physician Pediatric Genetics Clinic at Texas Children’s Hospital. Using state of the art tools, Chopra and his team were able to study Neonatal Progeroid Syndrome in a patient, Abby Solomon, and eventually discovered a new hormone, asprosin, which could hold the key for future cures. Solomon, 21, suffers from a condition that is due to a mutation of the FBN1 gene which results in mangled noses and eyes and damaged liver, making her look middle-aged. The mutation interferes with the production of asprosin which regulates blood sugar and make the person hypoglycemic. The deficiency makes Solomon snack all the time, but weighing only 99 lbs., she eats half the calories of a woman her age and also expends half as much energy. Chopra met Solomon in 2013 and started studying her body functions, eventually discovering the blood sugar regulating gene asprosin. Solomon is essentially immune to obesity and diabetes, so Chopra hopes that the reducing asporisin in the blood could affect other people in the same way. So far, research has not been able to develop a drug that can effectively combat obesity and asporisin gives hope that one could be developed in the future. Chopra believes that many more hormones could be discovered in the coming decades.

Trump Says Will Investigate Visa Abuses; Indian Workers May Face Tough Scrutiny

US President-elect Donald Trump speaks at a “Thank You USA” tour rally in Grand Rapids, Michigan on December 9.

W

ASHINGTON: US president-elect Donald Trump has said that one of his first executive orders after assuming office would be to order investigation into all visas abuses that undermine jobs for the American worker, indicating that foreigner workers, including Indians, may face tough scrutiny under his administration. While Trump did not identify or name any particular visa abuse, lawmakers for the past few years have expressed concern over abuse of H-1B visas by companies. During his presidential campaign, Trump had emphasised tightening immigration and criticised companies that ship jobs overseas to countries like India and China. “One of my first executive orders will ask the Department of Labour to investigate all visa abuses that undermine jobs and wages for the American worker,” Trump said at a rally in Michigan on Friday. “We will fight to protect every American life. During the campaign, I also spent time with American workers laid off and forced to train the foreign workers that were brought in to replace them. That’s not going to happen anymore,” Trump said. He was apparently referring to cases like that of Disney World and other American

companies wherein people hired on H-1B visas, including Indians, displaced US workers. “The company that’s out there right now, they say you’re going to train the people that are going to replace you, and if you don’t do it, you’re not getting your severance pay, OK, not going to happen to our people anymore,” Trump said. He also vowed to end illegal immigration. “To protect our country from terrorism and extremism, I will suspend immigration and refugee admissions from regions where they cannot be safely processed or vetted,” he said. “On immigration, we will build a great wall and we will put an end to illegal immigration and stop the drugs from pouring into our country and poisoning our youth and many other people. Got to stop the drugs,” he said. “And we’re going to have people come into our country, hundreds of thousands of people. We want them to come in because we’re going to have big, beautiful doors in that wall, but they’re going to come in legally through a process legally,” he said. Trump said he believes in peace through strength. “We will, however, get rid of ISIS, I’m sorry. We will get rid of ISIS. ISIS has to go. At the same time, we will ensure our veterans have the best medical care in the world. It’s about time,” he said. “And on healthcare, we will repeal and replace Obamacare. We’re going to have healthcare that’s much less expensive. They will be much better, much stronger. The murder rate our country has experienced is the largest increase in 45 years. You don’t hear that. We are going to support the incredible men and women of law enforcement and we are going to bring this crime wave to an end,” he said. -hindustantimes.com

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22 December 16, 2016

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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 20, 2016. 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).

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PUZZLES / RECIPES Mama’s Punjabi Recipes Kanji (Black Carrot Juice)

By popular demand from many

readers, below is a reprint of Mama’s Kanji recipe. It still brings back memories for older people but the healthy drink can benefit old and young alike. It is reprinted with some additional information and directions. It is believed that carrots originated some 5,000 years ago in what is now Afghanistan, in the HinduKush mountain region and these were mainly purple or yellow with some white and black. The orange ones didn’t appear till 1,500 AD. The purple and yellow carrots spread to Mediterranean and Western Europe in the 11th century and to India, China and Japan in the 14th to 17th centuries. Carrots can be found in many colors and shapes, mostly black, purple, red, orange and white, each of which have their own taste and cooking methods. The color of carrots indicates different beneficial nutrients. Orange carrots are rich in beta-carotene, which is rich in vitamin A. Red carrots contain lycopene, a potent antioxidant, also found in tomatoes and watermelon, that prevent aging of the skin. Yellow carrots contain xanthophyll that can regulate systolic pressure while white carrots can slow down the spread of cancer cells. Purple or black carrots contain anthocyanins, a potent antioxidant, which can protect against heart disease, diabetes and colon cancer. Black carrots have 5 times more vitamin A than the daily allowance, have lots of potassium, sodium and phosphorus and also moderate amounts of vitamins C, K, B6, B1, B3 and B5, Anthocyanins are found in every dark-colored foods like blueberries, blackberries and plums. Carrots contain almost no starch but have 7 per cent free sugars, which make them high in calories. People frequently drink carrot juice but it’s not a very good option for diabetics as it gets converted to glucose very quickly and can cause a spike in blood sugar. There are many benefits attributed to carrot juice, but in North India where black carrots are readily available and not usually eaten raw, the juice of these carrots is called kanji, a

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fermented drink made especially for the festival of Holi, and considered much superior to red carrot juice. Two glasses of kanji can boost your immunity levels by more than 50 per cent. Black carrots can be hard to find in the US, though some organic stores do carry them. If you can’t find any black carrots, then you may substitute them with red carrots and add small amount of beetroot to give the dark purple color but not alter the taste of carrots. Ingredients: • • • • •

1 kilo kali gajar (black carrots) 1 large glass jar of pani (water) – use jar with screw top cover 2 tablespoons raai seed powder (mustard seed powder) 2 tablespoons namak (salt) 1 tablespoon lal mirch (red pepper)

Directions: 1. Peel the black carrots, wash and drain them. Chop each carrot into three pieces then slice them lengthwise. 2. Place the sliced carrots in the glass jar of water then add the salt, red pepper and mustard seeds and close the jar. 3. Place the closed jar in the sunshine for three or four days but stir two to three times a day with a wooden spatula. Taste to see if the juice is slightly sour, if so then it is ready then take out of the heat. 4. If there is no sunlight, then place it indoors, but not in a cool area as it needs to ferment. You could place it inside the pantry at room temperature for four days. Again, remember to stir two to three times a day with a wooden spatula. 5. The kanji will be ready to drink after the third day. Then place the jar in room temperature to conserve and drink for no more than two weeks. Placing it in the fridge will reduce the desired bitter taste. 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 (since renamed Faisalabad), India before it became part of Pakistan after the Partition. 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 some of her delectable recipes.

MAMA’S T IP OF THE WEEK OPT IONAL KANJI RECI PE WITH

RED CARROTS Black carrots can be difficult to find in mo farmers markets an st places in the US, ex d sp cept at sive. For those who ecialty stores, and then they may be qu ite know the taste of ka nji and long for its un expenand want the benefi ique taste ts of black carrots, there is another wa get close to the sam y, though, to e typ Make the kanji using e of juice. red them in the jar of wa carrots; the redder the better, and when ter, add a small chuk placing sliced. The beetroo andar (beetroot), pe t will bring out the ele d and color and also add that of black carro taste ts. Beetroots conta in folate (vitamin B9 close to very good source of ) and ma fiber, magnesium, ph nganese, potassium and copper and als are a o die osphorus, vitamin C, iron and vitamin B6 tary .

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December 16, 2016

ENTERTAINMENT:REVIEWS/NEWS ENTERTAINMENT:REVIEWS/NEWS

23

Katrina Kaif Sizzles

What

starts as a crazy onenight stand ends up in a relationship. But Dharam and Shyra fall out of love just as quickly. Where will life take them now? Can two temperamental, volatile exes become friends? In a Yash Raj film, sure they can. Dharam (Ranveer Singh) and Shyra (Vaani Kapoor) have recently broken up and can’t see eye-to-eye. In song-filled flashbacks, we see their meet cute, how they dared each other to do crazy things and got into a live-in relationship, only to realize that they were incompatible. They soon come to terms with their break-up but decide to remain friends. When their individual love lives restart, the friendship gets tested. Befikre is a victim of the inevitability of love stories. There really can only be two outcomes, and then, the journey to those outcomes makes the movie. The plot is unoriginal, but the sparkling chemistry between the leads pulls you through most parts of the movie. Essentially, it’s like the

same banner’s Mere Yaar Ki Shaadi Hai, but in reverse. Dharam is every feminist’s nightmare: a homophobic straight boy from Delhi who slut-shames girls, thinks lesbians will sleep with him and is offended by the lack of remorse a girl feels after breaking-up with him. Only Singh could have pulled off this character without being obnoxious. He’s fun to watch in a departure from his intense Bajirao role, but to be fair, he’s familiar with this territory. Shyra is a sorted girl with a good head on her shoulders and Vaani’s breezy act makes you wonder why she hasn’t worked more! There are innumerable throwbacks to DDLJ and most bring a smile to your face. One that particularly stands out is a mother-daughter scene, much like the Farida JalalKajol scene. There, Jalal’s character told Kajol’s that women have to suppress their feelings; in this updated version, Shyra’s mother tells her to stand up for herself. Befikre has some honest, funny moments and the attempt to upgrade the genre is apparent, but you don’t come away with anything new. If you care for some laughs, some YRF nostalgia and are,well, promiscuous withyour choice of romcoms, you could take chance with this one. -timesofindia.com

in Sensuous Bridal Shoot

Riteish Deshmukh December 17, 1978

John Abraham December 17, 1972

It might be a while before we

see Katrina Kaif walk down the aisle with Mr Right, but that hasn’t stopped the Bollywood beauty from posing in dreamy wedding ensembles. The actress, who was in Maldives early this month for a photo shoot for Harper’s Bazaar Bride, teased fans with a series of sexy behind-the-scene pictures. Now, the final pictures have made their way online, and might we say, they are breathtakingly beautiful. From posing in a maroon bikini top

lehenga to basking in the sun with a nude-coloured lehenga and even channelling her inner enchantress in a blue embroidered lehenga, Kat proved that she could pull off any bridal look. -timesofindia.com

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 16, 2016 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM

Govinda December 21, 1963


24 December 16, 2016 Ashwin Takes 12, India Take Series with Innings Win

SPORTS

Aussie Usman Khawaja to Start vs. Pakistan

GABBA -- He was still at the

India’s players do a victory lap after the win, India v England, 4th Test, Mumbai, 5th day, December 12, 2016

BY ALAGAPPAN MUTHU

India 631 (Kohli 235, Vijay 136,

Jayant 104) beat England 400 (Jennings 112, Buttler 76, Moeen 50, Ashwin 6-112, Jadeja 4-109) and 195 (Root 77, Bairstow 51, Ashwin 6-55) by an innings and 36 runs. With a victory over England by an innings and 36 runs, India have secured their fifth consecutive series and regained the Anthony De Mello trophy. R Ashwin picked up his second five-for of the match, and the 24th of his career, to make sure the formalities were complete by the first half hour on the fifth day. He took his first wicket when the visitors were 180 for 4. They were all out for 195. It was only the third time in Test history that a team had made 400 in the first innings and then lost by an innings. The end was very quick and very messy. Jonny Bairstow was sent packing in the second over and Chris Woakes in the fourth. Their dismiss-

als provided a simple little summary of the difference in skill between the sides in subcontinent conditions. Ashwin flicked a carrom ball on middle and leg with the intention of making Bairstow play across the line and the batsman obliged. Bairstow failed to pick the variation, was squared up when the ball turned the wrong way, and sharply, and was plumb lbw. Woakes, in the next Ashwin over, went for a loose cover drive, but the ball dipped on him and stormed through the gate to hit the stumps. Reading the ball out of the hand is key to playing on turning tracks, as is avoiding strokes that have a high degree of risk, like hitting against the break. Adil Rashid gave an example of the other thing batsmen weren’t supposed to do: throw their wicket away. He lobbed a catch to deep midwicket off Ashwin’s third over. James Anderson came out and was promptly pulled into some polite conversation by the close-in fielders after his

criticism of their captain. He popped a catch to midwicket to give Ashwin his sixth wicket and the best match figures by a spinner at Wankhede stadium - 12 for 167. With the win in Mumbai, India were unbeaten for 17 matches in a row - equaling their longest such streak in Test cricket. The fifth Test between India and England is likely to go ahead as scheduled, with the host association confirming that cyclone Vardah, which swept through Chennai on Monday, has not unduly affected the pitch and outfield at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. England’s training scheduled for Wednesday was, however, cancelled as the ground was unfit and India were also unlikely to train. The Test match is scheduled to begin on Friday. “The assuring part is that the pitch and the outfield has not been affected by the cyclone,” Kasi Viswanathan, the secretary of the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association, told PTI. “But

sightscreen has been damaged. The bulbs have blown off, air conditioners damaged. “There have been hundreds of tree trunks lying in the road leading up to the stadium. Our challenge is to set everything in order in the next two days. I am confident we will be able to set everything right.” Viswanathan also confirmed that the three stands of the stadium that have been locked by the Chennai Corporation for the last four years over a dispute with the TNCA would remain closed during the Test match. Both teams flew into Chennai on Tuesday, as per schedule.

centre of an awkward moment on Tuesday. “Funnily enough I was waiting downstairs and I needed the change room locker to be opened for us and I was just waiting and the Queensland Cricket lady came down,” Khawaja said at the Gabba. “She was like ‘Oh, you need the locker rooms open?’ I went ‘yes please’ and she started walking to the Pakistani change room. I was like, ‘No, I’m that way, thank you’.” His Pakistani background remains important to Khawaja, although he remembers only glimpses of his early life in Islamabad. He has not been back to visit relatives in Pakistan since 2008, and has had few dealings with the Pakistan cricket team, having played against them only in a solitary Twenty20 international during this year’s World T20 in India. Asked whether playing his first Test against Pakistan would be a significant moment, Khawaja said he had not considered the matter in that way, but he said it might be a big moment for his parents, Tariq and Fozia. “They grew up in Pakistan and were there for a long time,” Khawaja said. “Obviously I was born there, so it’s a very close part of me. It still is a very big part of me... culture is very important, as is religion. My parents are Australian but they’re also very Pakistani.

Alagappan Muthu is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

For advertising contact: 713-789-6397

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 16, 2016 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


December 16, 2016

Rs 32 Crore Cash in New Notes, 82kg Gold Seized in Multiple Raids Across Country

I-T department seized Rs 5.7 crore cash in new notes, 32kg bullion and jewellery and Rs 90 lakh old notes in Karnataka’s Chitradurga district.

R

aids across the country on Saturday yielded a haul of over Rs 44 crore including Rs 32 crore in new currency and 82 kg of gold. Delhi Police raided the office of a law firm in south Delhi last Saturday night and seized Rs 13.65 crore in cash -- counted till Sunday morning -- of which Rs 2.6 crore was in new bank notes. The raid was carried out by the Crime Branch at the office of T&T Law Firm, said a senior police officer. When the police team raided the office, its rooms were locked and only a caretaker was present. Police are searching for the firm promoter Rohit Tandon. In Karnataka, the Income Tax department seized Rs 5.7 crore cash in new notes, 32kg of gold and jewellery, and Rs 90 lakh of old notes stashed inside the bathroom tiles of a hawala dealer in the remote town of Challakere. The I-T department seized the alleged undisclosed assets from the unidentified hawala operator as part of its raids against black money hoarders. The seizure was carried out after the I-T department’s investigation wing in Panaji began searches on Friday against casino and bullion traders in Hubballi and Chitradurga districts.

In neighbouring Tamil Nadu, the Income Tax department seized Rs 24 crore in new notes in Vellore and 50 kgs of gold from businessmen Sekhar Reddy, adding to the biggest confiscation of black money postdemonetisation. Police officials say that the new seizure was made when I-T officials checked a car in Vellore after interrogating the three men who had been earlier arrested in Chennai two days ago when the tax operations began. “The raided premises belong to the industrialist Sekhar Reddy, his associate and family member Srinivasalu Reddy, and their agents, including a man named Prem,” an I-T official said. So far, 4 out of the total 8 premises that have been searched,” he added. Reddy, a prominent industrialist was also a member of the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam Trust Board. Following the seizures of cash and gold, Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu ordered his removal as a member of the board of trustees. On Friday, the three men were arrested after IT officials seized Rs 90 crore in old high denomination notes and Rs 9.63 crore in the new Rs 2000 note. I-T officials also seized 127 kg gold from premises belonging to Reddy in Chennai. -hindustantimes.com

25

Cyrus Mistry Misled to Become Chairman, NRIs Have Advantage in India’s Luxury Retracted on Promises: Tata Sons Property Market after

NEW DELHI: Escalating the

corporate governance principles boardroom battle at India’s largest Tata Sons strived for.” “This retraction, created grave conglomerate, Tata Sons on Sunday charged Cyrus P Mistry of mislead- concerns on Mr Mistry’s ability ing to get selected as Chairman, to lead the Tata Group devoid of retracting on his promises, concen- personal conflicts and put to risk trating powers and using free-hand the high standards of self-less govgiven to him to weaken management ernance, that lies at the core of the structures. Days ahead of meetings Tata philosophy,” it said. Mistry, of shareholders of group companies it said, had over the past 3-4 years to consider removing Mistry from concentrated all power and authority board of key listed companies, Tata only in his own hands as Chairman Sons said it is bringing out “key in all the major Tata Group operating facts” that resulted “in the loss of companies and “gone about systemconfidence” in him and leading to atically diluting the representation of Tata Sons on the Boards of various his removal. Tata Sons said that Mistry “mis- Tata Companies.” Mistry took advantage of the “free led” the Selection Committee set up in 2011 for selecting a Chair- hand” and trust “to weaken management structures in man of Tata Sons Tata Companies actto succeed Ratan ing contrary to his fiTata, by “making duciary duties,” Tata lofty statements Sonssaidintheappeal about his plans to shareholders. Tata for the Tata Group Sons said its Board and more imporhas been concerned tantly indicated an for some time about elaborate managethe financial performent structure for mance as the holding managing the Tata company’s dividend Group, given its diincome (other than versity of business, from TCS) declined by suggesting a Cyrus Mistry continuously and management structure aimed at dispersal of authority staff costs more than doubled. “All this would have resulted in and responsibility.” “These statements and commit- losses but for the TCS dividend. ments from Mr Cyrus Mistry played Mr Mistry did not show concern an important role in the Selection about these issues and the increasing Committee’s final selection of Mr dependence of Tata Sons on TCS. Mistry as Chairman. After waiting The Board could not accept this any for a period of four years, almost further as it had the potential to risk none of these management struc- the financial viability of Tata Sons,” tures and plans have been given it said. Reacting strongly to the Tata’s apeffect to. Clearly, in our opinion, the Selection Committee was misled peal, Cyrus Mistry said Ratan Tata’s in its choice of Mr Mistry,” it said. conduct has eroded the Tata brand It charged Mistry of “inappropri- and values materially. In a stateate” conduct by retracting from his ment released, Mistry said, “Repeat promise to distance himself from a lie thousand times and hope it his family enterprise – Shapoorji becomes a truth seems to be Ratan Pallonji & Company to create “a Tata’s last-ditch effort to overcome sense of breach of trust” and posing a monumental disaster his actions “significant challenge to the high unleashed.” -indianexpress.com

Demonetisation

SINGAPORE: NRIs have an ad-

vantage in luxury property market in India post-demonetisation as real estate developers in major cities of the country have ‘significantly’ dropped property rates, according to Singapore-based business analysts. “Given the recent demonetisation move, property rates have significantly dropped across various cities in India,” said Abhijit Ghosh, India Desk leader at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Singapore, an international financial consultancy. “Specifically, the luxury condominium range of property apartments has been badly hit given that one of the objectives of the current demonetisation move is to discourage all significant cash transactions,” said Gaurav Tijoriwalla, Manager, PwC Singapore. There has always been a trend for NRIs to invest in Indian luxury condominium apartments in the metropolitan cities of India. “Experts believe that we can soon expect a 10-25 per cent discount in the luxury segment of residential condominiums and also in the upmarket areas such as Nungambakkam, RA Puram and MRC Nagar in Chennai,” Ghosh said. They have also forecasted Delhi property prices to offer 25-30 per cent discounts and Bangalore to offer 3040 per cent discounts. NRI sources expect luxury property prices to drop by 25-30 per cent. Property transactions have plunged significantly in the last month after demonetisation programme on November 8. Bangalore property registrations have dropped to about 200 per day, compared to approximately 1,800 properties before the move was taken, the experts said. Mumbai is expected to see a 50-70 per cent slow down or may even go to a no transaction period. India’s property enquiry portals, have seen a significant dip, about 400 people per day asking from erstwhile number of 1,500-1,700.

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 16, 2016 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


26 December 16, 2016

P

Will End ‘Gundaraj’ in Uttar Pradesh if Elected to Power: Modi

rime Minister Narendra Modi promised on Sunday to defeat corruption and nab illegal cash hoarders in three months, accusing opposition parties of trying to crush the “truth” by stalling Parliament over the scrapping of high-value currency. Speaking at a rally in western UP’s Bahraich district though a mobile phone, the prime minister said the BJP will end lawlessness in Uttar Pradesh if elected to power and hit out at regional rivals Samajwadi and Bahujan Samaj Party. “We are ready for debate (on demonetisation), but we are not being allowed to present our viewpoint by those very parties that have been discarded by the electorate,” he said. “The country is facing trouble in walking the path of honesty. I am confident of winning the war against corruption,” he said. He said UP knew how political ri-

PM Narendra Modi said his fight against corruption and illegal wealth would continue despite opposition parties stalling Parliament.

vals weren’t allowing his government to spell out its stand on the junking of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes by disrupting Parliament. Little work has been transacted during the ongoing winter session that has just three days left. “UP wants to break free of the gundaraj. If UP needs to progress, supporters of gundagardi will have

to leave. The BJP will do that,” he said. The PM spoke for 13 minutes through a mobile phone after his helicopter failed to land because of poor visibility. “They (SP and BSP) are seldom on the same page. But nowadays, they are speaking in one voice. I can’t understand why they are bothered by the fight against black money,” he said. This was supposed to be the fifth parivartan rally addressed by Modi, who is leading the BJP charge to come back to power in India’s most populous state after more than a decade. But the saffron party is locked in a close fight with the SP, BSP and Congress. Modi focused on his government’s demonetisation move in the IndoNepal border town known to be a hotbed of counterfeit currency and

militancy funding, two things the Centre says will be wiped out by the junking of the high-value notes. The government’s decision has come under fire in recent weeks as long queues outside banks and ATMs continue and experts warn of adverse effects on the economy, including the possible loss of thousands of jobs. But Modi dismissed Opposition charges that demonetisation hurt the underprivileged, saying his administration was committed to the welfare of the poor “Unaccounted-for money is being seized daily and unscrupulous bankers are facing action. People hoarding black money will be brought to justice in two to three months.” He also urged people to adopt mobile banking, pointing out how a cellphone had enabled him to address a rally where a powerful helicopter had failed. -hindustantimes.com

Indian IT 3.0: The World is Your Oyster

Starting off as a provider of talent, Indian IT enterprises today are increasingly partnering with enterprises in their transformation journeys.

Most people don’t realize this, but

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India’s tryst with information technology (IT) started more than three millennia ago. Aryabhata laid the basic foundation of IT and digitization with the invention of zero. Fast forward to the 20th century, and Indian IT industry veterans have even more fascinating stories to tell. In the 1970s and ’80s, code was physically shipped to clients. Every programming change warranted another shipment, something very hard to believe for most people today. Authorities were unsure of how to treat software codes. Were they goods or services? What tax regulations would apply? Amid this confusion, the IT industry slowly took shape in the 1980s, taking advantage of the huge opportunity presented by computerization. The industry remained small until 1990, gained some momentum in the post-liberalization age, and Y2K was the game-changer for the sector. Faced with the massive IT implications of a changing millennium in the late 1990s, the western world found

itself unprepared, coming up short both on capability and capacity to deliver the requisite transformations. Indian IT companies stepped up to the challenge. History is witness to the seamless transition that enterprises made to 1 January 2000—no major incident of computing malfunction reported. The world acknowledged the contribution made by Indian IT in making this happen, catalysing a decade of hyper growth for the sector in the country. The statistics since 2000 speak for themselves. At the time of liberalization, in 1991, this was a $150 million industry. By the turn of the millennium, the sector had grown by more than 30 times to around $5 billion and has since ballooned to $150 billion, having expanded another 30 times. India accounts for nearly 55% of the “offshore” of this services market comprising IT, engineering and business process management. India leads by a margin, displacing erstwhile incumbents like Canada and Ireland. India’s five largest IT companies today count themselves

470 People Have Died of Shock Over Jayalalithaa’s Demise

C

HENNAI: Ruling AIADMK on Sunday said a total of 470 people have died of “shock” following the demise of former Tamil Nadu chief minister and party general secretary J Jayalalithaa+ on December 5. The party, which has been releasing in the past few days the lists of people who have died of shock over the death Jayalalithaa, on Sunday released names of 190 people. In a statement that accompanied the list, the party condoled their deaths and announced relief of Rs 3 lakh each to the families of the deceased. The party said the total number of people who had died now stood at 470. The statement added that six people had attempted suicide thus far, including four people whose details were released on Sunday. The party had earlier announced Rs 50,000 for one person who allegedly attempted suicide and another who had cut off his finger after hearing about Jayalalithaa’s death. In the latest statement, the party announced Rs 50,000 for the four people for their medical treatment. -timesofindia.com among the top 20 firms in the industry globally, with the quintet also appearing among the largest 10 IT enterprises in terms of market capitalization. The industry has been a major contributor to the Indian economy. Directly or indirectly, the sector contributes around 10% to the gross domestic product, nearly 25% to exports, and employs over 13 million people. Smaller IT firms account for about 60% of this contribution, while women make up around 35% of the industry’s workforce, making it one of the most diversity-friendly sectors in India. The industry has changed Brand India forever. The land of snake charmers and elephants is now the land of technology and home to a vibrant IT industry that is transforming enterprises across the globe. Any discussion on IT in global forums is incomplete without a reference to India’s prowess in the sector. -livemint.com

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 16, 2016 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM


December 16, 2016

INDO-AMERICAN NEWS • FRIDAY, DECEMBER 16, 2016 • ONLINE EDITION: WWW.INDOAMERICAN-NEWS.COM

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December 16, 2016

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