Indo-American News December 3, 2021

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Friday, December 3, 2021 | Vol. 40, No. 49

Indo American News

December 3, 2021



Published weekly from Houston, TX

Special Reports Community Briefs Local Politics South Asians in the News

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ICC Board Appreciation Night with CG

The spirit of Thanksgiving the day before was very much in the air as the India Culture Center Board came together with other friends and potential new members and hopeful Directors to meet at the home of their President, Jasmeeta Singh on the westside.

Abhishek as ‘Bob Biswas’




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December 3, 2021


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December 3, 2021

Chinmaya Mission Houston Releases a New “Upanishad Daily” App By Diya Vuthandam

In our fast-paced environments, filled with back-to-back meetings, classes, and notifications, an invaluable nugget of wisdom embedded in our daily routines can be just what we need to recenter ourselves. This was the intention harnessed by Chinmaya Mission Houston (CMH) as they developed their newly released app, “Upanishad Daily”, giving seamless access to some of our oldest scriptures through a novel, modern medium. As the Texans say, this is not CMH’s first rodeo when it comes to digital transformation of our ancient scriptures. On October 6, 2019 the Gita 365 app was released to provide the viewer with a daily message from the Gita. It is said that the Bhagavad Gita is an essence of the Upanishads; as a natural progression students sought to expand on their knowledge and receive a more in-depth understanding of the Upanishads. Thus, on the heels of a successful launch of the Gita 365 app, the Chinmaya Jivan Darshan team, guided by Acarya Darshana Nanavaty (loving called Darshana Aunty) released the Upanishad Daily on October 24, 2021, which was blessed by the virtual presence of Pujya Guruji Swami Tejomayananda and Pujya Swami Swaroopananda. Pujya Gurudev Swami Chin-

mayananda centered his mission around elevating the accessibility of Hindu scriptures to reach a wider audience of seekers around the world. Digitally transforming his teachings is a fitting next step. The App will send users a push notification of a short “message of the day”, derived from Pujya Gurudev’s Jnana Yagnas on the Upanisads­ - Kaivalyopanisad, Kenopanisad, Kathopanisad, three popular Upanisads handpicked to be an easy starting point in the discovery of the scriptures. Both the Gita 365 and Upanishad Daily apps are available for free on the Apple App store and Google play. Distilling the message into an app format was not without challenges for the Jivan Darshan team. The messages delivered had to use media creatively to make these complex ideas easily digestible for the user. The platform has to be as user friendly and accessible as possible. Working with videos that were originally filmed 30-40 years ago posed some difficulties, as team members had to enhance the color and sound of the videos to make them more appealing to a modern viewer. The goal was also to ensure the user interface remained authentic to the spiritual tone of the platform, all while appealing to users from a broad range of generations. The Sanskrit word “Upanishad” translates to “sitting down near

to”, alluding to the fact that gurus would historically sit with their dedicated students to share their wisdom. In a world where there is an overwhelming abundance of knowledge on any topic, the Upanishad Daily, gives us intimate access to carefully curated material, much like a guru who is able to weed out the excesses and guides us through our spiritual study. For more information about Chinmaya Mission Houston, Sri Saumyakasi Sivalaya and its activities please visit, www.saumyakasi. org or call temple 281 568 1690 or Jay Deshmukh 832 541 0059 or Bharati Sutaria 281-933-0233

Republican Cherivirala Enters District 76 Race

Sugar Land NY Life insurance agent Ramesh Cherivirala has launched his candidacy for the Republican Party nomination to serve as State Representative for the new House District 76 in Fort Bend County. “I am running for State Representative because our County and State needs a leader with proven business success and the leadership skills to fight for the future of our families and communities. The new House District 76 is a fast-growing area, and we deserve a strong advocate for this community, a destination for thousands of residents in the last decade.

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December 3, 2021

World Table Tennis Championships in Houston

Houston: Table Tennis enthusiasts in Houston had the opportunity to view and cheer for the sport’s leading table tennis players at the World Table Tennis Championships in Houston’s George Brown Convention Center from November 23 to 29. This was the first time the world championships were held outside of Europe or Asia. In the finals on Monday, the Number 1 seed Fan Zhendong easily won the final Men’s Singles match easily 4-0 against Sweden’s Truls Moregard. In the Women’s Singles final, China’s Wang Manyu beat her compatriot Sun Yingsha 4-2. The tournament was hosted by the Houston Sports Association. On the local organizing committee, active members from the Indo-American community included Jayant and Kanchan Kabad, Jyoti Kulkarni, and Neeraj Oak. Scores of other volunteers helped at the tournament site and also in greeting and assisting the visiting Indian team. In the Men;s Singles Quarterfinals, USA’s Kanak Jha lost 4-2 to Timo Boll of Germany. In Women’s Doubles Quarterfinals, Manika Batra and Archana Kamat lost to French team of Sarah de Nutte and Lian Xia Ni. In the Mixed Doubles Quarterfinals, the Indian team of Sathian Gnanasekaran and Manika Batra lost to Japan’s Tomokazu Harimoto and Hina Hayata. To make the Indian team comfortable in unfamiliar surroundings, Sridhar Kota brought food from Indian local restaurants. The Indian contingent was able to visit NASA on Saturday. The 2022 ITTF TT tournament will take place in Busan, South Korea.

USA player Kanak Jha reached the Men’s singles quarter final, a first for the US since 1959.

Pradeep Sulhan, P.C.

Certified Public Accountant Houston table tennis enthusiasts greeted the Indian TT team when they arrived at the Houston airport to wish them luck. Several Indian teams reached the quarterfinals.

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December 3, 2021


Abhishek’s ‘Bob Biswas’ Releases on Dec. 3 Exclusively on ZEE5

This December, ZEE5 Global, the world’s largest streaming platform for South Asian content, brings to its viewers Bob Biswas, a crime-drama set against the backdrop of a love story, showcasing the dual life led by contract killer, Bob Biswas. Starring Abhishek Bachchan in the titular role and Chitrangda Singh as Mary, the ZEE5 Original film has been directed by Diya Annapurna Ghosh and is produced by Gauri Khan, Sujoy Ghosh and Gaurav Verma. The journey of Bob Biswas, a middle-aged hitman-for-hire who comes out of a prolonged coma not being able to remember any details about his life and his past including his own family. As he tries to remember his identity, episodes from his past come alive, putting him in a moral dilemma between the history of his own deeds versus his newly developed sense of right and wrong. The film is a Boundscript production presented by Red Chillies Entertainment and set to premiere on India’s largest homegrown OTT platform, ZEE5 on 3rd December. Shot in Kolkata, Bob Biswas also stars Chitrangda Singh in a pivotal role. Archana Anand, Chief Business Officer, ZEE5 Global, said, ““In line with our commitment to bring our viewers the best stories across genres and from master storytellers, we are happy to announce yet another direct-to-digital release

‘Bob Biswas’ in association with Red Chillies Entertainment and Sujoy Ghosh’s Boundscript. A crime drama with Abhishek Bachchan playing the character of Bob Biswas, the film is sure to delight our global audiences.” Debutant Director, Diya Annapurna Ghosh, said, “I have had the most fantastic experience designing Bob Biswas, a crimedrama that has a love story in its essence. This film came to me in 2020 which was one of the most difficult times in all of our lives. I was blessed with a fabulous set of actors like Abhishek and Chitrangda amongst others, who have given it their all. With the support of my whole crew, Red Chillies Entertainment and Boundscript, we culminated amidst all odds to make Bob Biswas happen and I

am very grateful to them.” Gaurav Verma, Producer & COO Red Chillies Entertainment said, “We endeavour to tell engaging stories across all platforms and back fresh talent; Bob Biswas is another step in that direction. It’s

a unique film, a character spin-off, something we have never attempted before. It was exciting to work with Diya, who has transformed into a director with a lot of promise in her very first film. Together with producing partner Sujoy Ghosh, we are excited to bring Bob Biswas to the viewers through ZEE5.” Sujoy Ghosh from Boundscript, Co-producer and Writer said, “This is a new ‘Bob Biswas’, he is like any of us. In life, we all have various roles to play, whether as a parent, spouse or friend and in each role we are equally responsible and accountable. This is the world of Bob, where he is trying to cope with each role as his life unfolds before him. Creating this world of Bob was super exciting and having Abhishek onboard has made the film even cooler. I genuinely

Indo-American News • Friday, december 3, 2021 •

hope that the audience enjoys what they see.” Watch Bob Biswas exclusively on ZEE5 on 3rd December 2021. Users can download the ZEE5 app from Google Play Store / iOS App Store, on Roku devices, Apple TVs, Android TVs, and Amazon Fire Stick. ZEE5 is also available on ZEE5 Global ZEE5 is the digital entertainment destination launched by Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL), a global Media and Entertainment powerhouse. The platform launched across 190+ countries in October 2018 and has content across 18 languages: Hindi, English, Bengali, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Marathi, Oriya, Bhojpuri, Gujarati, Punjabi, including six international languages Malay, Thai, Bahasa, Urdu, Bangla and Arabic. ZEE5 is home to 170,000+ hours of On-Demand Content. The platform brings together the best of Originals, Movies and TV Shows, Music, Cineplays and Health and Lifestyle content all in one single destination. ZEE5 offers key features like 15 navigational languages, content download option, seamless video playback and Voice Search. ZEE5 Global Twitter: https:// ZEE5 Global LinkedIn: https:// zee5global/


December 3, 2021

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December 3, 2021

Who is Parag Agrawal: New CEO of Twitter? San Francisco: When Jack Dorsey, then Twitter’s executive chairman, pushed the company to build out its machine learning and artificial intelligence capabilities in 2014, he turned to an engineer, Parag Agrawal. When Mr. Dorsey later became Twitter’s chief executive and needed help overhauling the company’s infrastructure, he also tapped Mr. Agrawal. And when Mr. Dorsey envisioned a future for Twitter in 2019 that would be based on the concept of decentralization and technologies such as the blockchain, he again pulled in Mr. Agrawal to help. On Monday, Mr. Dorsey made the handover complete when he stepped down as chief executive and Mr. Agrawal, 37, was named Twitter’s new leader. Mr. Agrawal, the chief technology officer since 2017, is little known to the public, with even some Twitter insiders saying they were surprised by his appointment. But behind the scenes, the India-born engineer has been a Twitter veteran and confidant of Mr. Dorsey’s who has been involved in many of the company’s biggest strategic initiatives. That made Mr. Dorsey effusive about his successor, saying in a tweet that the board had run a “rigorous” search for a new chief executive and had “unanimously” endorsed Mr. Agrawal. “He’s been my choice for some time given how deeply he understands the company and its needs,” Mr. Dorsey, 45, wrote.

In his own message to employees on Monday, Mr. Agrawal emphasized his knowledge of the company and his kinship with its workers. “I joined this company 10 years ago when there were fewer than 1,000 employees,” Mr. Agrawal wrote in the company email, which he also tweeted. “I’ve walked in your shoes, I’ve seen the ups and downs, the challenges and obstacles, the wins and the mistakes. But then and now, above all else, I see Twitter’s incredible impact, our continued progress, and the exciting opportunities ahead of us.” Mr. Agrawal becomes the latest India-born executive to take over a major American technology company. Executives of South Asian descent are now at the helm of companies including Microsoft, Google and IBM, with many of them succeeding the companies’ founders. To some in Silicon Valley, Mr. Agrawal’s elevation was the definition of the American dream. Born in Mumbai, Mr. Agrawal studied computer science and engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology, an elite technical university. In 2005, he moved to the United States and enrolled at Stanford University to pursue a doctorate in computer science. There, he joined a research group focused on databases, which let computers store and mine large amounts of digital information.-- New York Times

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December 3, 2021

Ravindra, Ajaz Frustrate India as Kiwis Hold On for Hard-fought Draw

Houston: India 345 (Iyer 105, Gill 52, Jadeja 50, Southee 5-69, Jamieson 3-91) and 234 for 7 dec (Iyer 65, Saha 61, Jamieson 3-40, Southee 3-75) drew with New Zealand 296 (Latham 95, Young 89, Axar 5-62, Ashwin 3-82) and 165 for 9 (Latham 52, Jadeja 4-40, Ashwin 3-35) Two great spinners and their hugely accurate understudy pitting their skills against one of the slowest Indian Test pitches of recent times. A debutant and a No. 11 joining forces to try and eke out a draw. Nervous glances at lightmeter readings. Sign up for ESPN+ and catch all the action from India vs New Zealand live in the US. Click here to watch English highlights from the first Test, and here for the Hindi highlights All these ingredients came together in a dramatic final session as an engrossing Test match between the No. 1 and 2 teams in the world concluded with bad light ending play 12 minutes before the scheduled close, with India one wicket from victory. And while the light situation may have helped them, New Zealand had to earn their great escape, with Rachin Ravindra and Ajaz Patel seeing out 52 balls in a tense, unbroken last-wicket stand. They may have stopped just short of bowling India to a win, but R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja and Axar Patel put in a tremendous effort in challenging conditions. The fifth-

The final moments in Kanpur were quite gripping indeed BCCI

day pitch in Kanpur showed little sign of deterioration, and its slowness and lack of carry continued to negate the threat of its low bounce. There wasn’t a single bat-pad catch among the 36 wickets that fell over the five days, and only one was a catch in the slips - that too to a helmeted slip fielder stationed unusually close to the bat. It came down to how well the spinners could attack the stumps, and few do this as well as Ashwin, Jadeja and Axar. India needed six wickets at the start of the final session, and they grabbed five - all lbw or bowled - with Jadeja striking three times with quick, stumpto-stump balls on a perfect length laden with the threat of natural variation that could test either edge

of the bat. He had removed Ross Taylor on the stroke of tea with one that slid

on with the arm, and six overs into the final session he took out Kane Williamson - who saw out 112 balls to make 24 - with another low skidder that New Zealand’s captain played back to. Around these two key dismissals, New Zealand also lost Henry Nicholls, Tom Blundell - who was bowled when a defensive shot rolled back onto his stumps off a footmark Kyle Jamieson and Tim Southee one after another, leaving India one wicket from victory with more than 40 minutes still remaining, in theory. One good ball was all they needed, but on this day it wasn’t to be. Ravindra’s batting talent had won him a spot ahead of another allrounder who bowls left-arm spin in Mitchell Santner, and a left-arm seamer in Neil Wagner. The first four days had brought

Ravindra no wickets in 16 overs, and a first-innings score of 13. Now, however, was his time. Jadeja had bowled him with a ripper out of the footmarks in the first innings, and he alternated between flighted balls in that area and quicker ones at the stumps. Ashwin kept switching from over the wicket to around to try and mess with his alignment. Ravindra, though, showed he had the judgment of length and the footwork to be able to survive this examination, and got the little bit of luck that any batter in his situation would need, particularly when a shooter from Jadeja snuck under the bottom of his vertical bat and hit his back pad. Nitin Menon gave him out on the field, but a review showed the ball had struck him outside the line of off stump. -- ESPN Cricinfo



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December 3, 2021

Maheshwari Mahasabha Houston Community Celebrates Diwali

Houston: The Maheshwari Mahasabha of North America (MMNA) Houston community celebrated Diwali Milan on 13th November 2021, at VPSS Haveli with food, fun and laughter. This auspicious occasion, the festival of lights, the most important festival for all Hindus globally symbolizes the victory of good over evil, celebrating Lord Rama’s vanquishment of the evil king Ravana, and the subsequent victorious return of Lord Rama as king of Ayodhya. This spectacular Diwali program, which was named as Deepotsav 2021, was conceptualized, planned and executed by its committee members Shri Narendra Zanwar (NEC - BoT), Pramesh Maheshwari (President), Manoj Mundra (Vice president), Radhika Lohiya (Secretary), Jyoti Bagdi (Treasurer), Pratibha Baheti (Cultural Secretary), Harish Kabra (Development & Sports) and Preeti Rathi (Sakhi coordinator). The President of the chapter, Mr. Pramesh Maheshwari said “We are doing this annual event after a gap of two years due to COVID. Everyone is very excited to come together to hope and pray for the victory of humanity against the deadly global pandemic. This event inspires the community to promote cultural values, to provide fun and entertainment, acknowledge societal and individual achievements and network with each other. Houston has large number of Maheshwaris who are prominent in the field of business, education, medical, industry and

Committee Members and spouses with Renu Khator: From Left Preeti Rathi (Sakhi Coordinator), Pratibha Rathi (Cultural), Harish Kabra (Sports and development), Jyoti Bagdi (Treasurer), Manoj Mundra (Vice President), Mr Girish Khator, Mrs Renu Khator, Narendra Zamwar (Trustee), Pramesh Maheshwari (President) Radhika Lohiya (Secretary).

culture. Even though Maheshwari’s are very small in numbers overall, they have played a significant role in the overall development of Indian Society and the region.” The program started with Laxmi Puja followed by grand cultural program showcasing most popular Hindu Spiritual Story of Ramayan and significance of Diwali and over 75 participants displayed their incredible talent of dance, singing, skit and music! A live band performance where kids played various instruments and sang melodiously was the highlight of the cultural program! Pratibha Baheti, Rajeev Baheti, Radhika Lohiya and Anup Lohiya, the masters of ceremony delighted the audience through their skillful mastery. The on-stage program was beautifully supported by accompanying visuals created and managed by Harish Kabra. Maheshwaris also took part in food drive for the needy under

SewaDiwali banner and collected various non-perishable food items which were later donated at various elderly homes. The highlight and breathtaking moment of the event was the presence of one of our most respected and accomplished member, Mrs. Renu Khator and Mr. Suresh Khator. Mrs. Renu Khator is the eighth chancellor and the thirteenth president of the University of Houston. She had embraced the program with her inspiring speech and humble attitude. She uplifted the spirit of all the achievement award winners with her inspiring words and her wishes. Through her crisp oration, she made all the attendees proud to be Maheshwaris, while giving a glimpse of her own family history. She struck a chord with all the kids enlightening them to dream big and work hard not worrying about the failure and nurtured them to retain thier culture and be a proud Maheshwari

and Indian which is our core foundation. MMNA also felicitated it’s dynamic members with achievement awards in various fields like academics, sports, science, music and Etc. All achievers received a certificate from Ms. Khator. “The event saw very active participation from men, women, kids and members from all walks of life. The cultural part was conceived and prepared by different women from the community who worked very hard for last two months” said Pratibha Baheti, the cultural secretary. “I feel so proud to see so many women coming forward and taking lead in preparing and actively participating in this event.” Said Preeti Rathi, the women wing coordinator for the chapter. International Maheshwari Rajasthani Convention (IMRC) conducted a skit competition ‘Sabse Chokho Nyoto’ and 3 teams of 6 members each entertained the audience. Video of the

Indo-American News • Friday, december 3, 2021 •

winning team will be used to invite community members from different chapters. IMRC is scheduled for next year 2022 during thanksgiving holidays in Houston. “We started the event sharp on time and everyone participated throughout the event. Many of the community senior members came on time, stayed throughout and blesses us during the event”. Said an elated Manoj Mundra, Vice President of MMNA. Jyoti Bagdi, Treasurer of MMNA said “It was a paid event attended by over 200 community people. We also had a bunch of generous donors who opened their hearts and made this event a grand success!” Narendra Zanwar thanked all the members of the community in making this a very successful event. He also appreciated all the volunteers for their efforts. Neeta and Ganesh Lathi volunteered for leading decoration, Ashish Phafat and Manish Garg managed front desk registration and Triveni and Sharad Mantri managed kids gifts. The organizers also thanked all the families in hosting the event preparation. The MMNA is a non-profit organization in operation for more than 35 years. With six chapters in North America, it caters to the needs of Maheshwari /Rajasthani families in North America. It maintains links between similar organizations in India and Europe. Its major charitable contributions are in the areas of education and social work. For more information, visit

SUDOKU/MOVIE REVIEW 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.

December 3, 2021


‘Antim: The Final Truth’: Salman Bhai is Back

Send us the correct answer before December 9. 2021 Email us at Please send us your solved Sudoku for your name to be published.

Solution Next Week By Shubhra Gupta

Last Week’s Solution

Last Week’s Winners

Sanchali Basu, Krishna R. Vuddagiri, Ramana Vadrevu

Cast: Salman Khan, Aayush Sharma, Mahima Makwana, Jisshu Sengupta, Sachin Khedekar, Upendra Limaye, Nikitin Dheer, Mahesh Majrekar Director: Mahesh Manjrekar Rating: One and a half stars First report after watching ‘Antim: The Final Truth’? My ear drums have shattered. Even going by the usual loudness of background music, this one sends it through the roof. Can you sit through a masala movie without having to say that no ears were harmed during the watching of the film? Next time, remind me to pick up ear-plugs. Meanwhile, here we are, watching a film pay lip service, for the millionth time, to the plight of poor farmers, land-grabbers, greedy netas, and other evil people. The film, based on the Marathi movie ‘Mulshi Pattern’, uses that superstructure to give Aayush Sharma a chance to change his lover-boy image, cemented in the 2018 ‘Loveyatri’, and to give Salman Khan’s fans, pining for their dabangg idol, a chance to re-unite with him. Those twin objects are fulfilled with a great deal of zeal and enthusiasm, because from the start, not a moment goes by without the school dropout Rahul/Rahulya (Aayush Sharma) glaring and flaring up at those who have grabbed his arrow-straight father’s (Sachin Khedekar) ‘zameen’. The moments that are left over are filled up by clean-and-mean police officer Sardar Rajveer Singh (Salman Khan), all togged out in a turban, having replaced his beloved azure bracelet with a ‘kadaa’, and doing what he does best– baring his ‘faulaadi’ chest, slinging out one-liners, and pulverizing the baddies. Everything else, in this Punebased actioner chock full of Marathi inflections and accents, is a filler. Sachin Khedekar as the long-suffering father who’d rather die than do anything dishonest; Upendra Limaye as the dodgy guy who takes Rahulya under his wing; Jisshu Sengupta as a local hood. Even Rahulya’s love-interest (Mahima Makwana),

who plays a girl dispensing cutting chai, is a perfunctory presence: she gets a dance, a roll in the hay, and a couple of speaking scenes. Sharma looks as if he could get into a character, once he stops playing a type. He may notionally be the lead, and he manages to snaffle a bare-chested scene or two, but make no mistake, the biggest lines are all Salman’s. Tu hoga Pune ka Bhai, says the latter

to the former, par main Hindustan ka Bhai hoon. Aur bolo. -- Indian Express

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December 3, 2021

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