Indo-American News March 22, 2019

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Friday, March 22, 2019 | Vol. 38, No. 07

Published biweekly from Houston, TX

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South Asian in the News

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CRY Houston Draws from Growing Base

Yogi Patel Leads Ekal


‘Kesari’: Tale of Valor


Child Rights & You (CRY) America, a 501c3 non-profit that works towards ensuring underprivileged children their basic rights, hosted their Annual Houston Gala Dinner on March 3.

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March 22, 2019

CRY Houston Draws from Growing Base at Larger Venue

Sugar Land: CRY, Child Rights & You America [CRY America], a 501c3 non-profit that works towards ensuring underprivileged children their basic rights, hosted their Annual Houston Gala Dinner on March 3rd at the Marriott Town Square in Sugar Land to bring people together for the cause of children’s rights. Speakers included emcee Meena Datt, Houston Consul General Anupam Ray, Fort Bend County Judge KP George and Special Guest Indian film actress Tanishaa Mukerji to amplify the voices of underprivileged children. Tanishaa is known for her works in Indian movies, Bollywood and Telugu and Tamil films. She is the daughter of filmmaker Shomu Mukherjee and actress Tanuja Samarth and the younger sister of Bollywood actress Kajol. The Gala was attended by 240 guests and raised over $125,000 which will be directed towards grass roots projects working on critical children’s issues. Apart from raising awareness for the cause, guests enjoyed the evening with dinner, cocktails, silent and live auctions, entertainment, music and dancing. Performances by Arzan Gonda, Executive Director of Rhythm India and her students during the program and the Bellaire Jazz Band during the social hour. added spark and were much appreciated by all the guests. They got up to dance at the tail end of the gala to the msuic

Organizers of CRY Houston and Gala Committee members take a bow at the function held on March 3 at the Sugar Land Marriott.

of DJ Sage. Auction items donated by famous Indian artistes included a beautiful painting by Prakash Deshmukh; fashion ensemble Abu Jani and Sandeep Khosla; a boxing glove autographed by World Champions; a Star Wars Movie Poster signed by 12 Cast Members; a Marvel Universe Picture autographed by the late Stan Lee; cricket bats signed by star players Saurav Ganguly and Sehwag were popular and sold out quickly by auctioneers Dr. Subodh Bhuchar and Abiya Malhotra. The Gala Committee composed of Dharam and Priya Bali, Juuhi and

Prakash Ahuja, Dina and Sameer Patel, Neeraj and Gauri Seth, Geetha and Bala Balachandran, Dr. Tina and Dr. Harish Pariani, Chetan and Radha Patel, Ritu and Kunal Nadkarni and Devina and Dilip Bhojwani played a key role in enabling a sold out and successful event. Event sponsors included Object Win, Vantive Inc., Wise Men, Wells Fargo Advisors, Shipcom Wireless, Ailings, ANB Systems, Murali Santhana Photography, Sage Productions, Rhythm India and Verandah. A special shout out to the media for their ongoing support - TV Asia, Star TV, Radio Dabang,

Indo American News, Voice of Asia, Meena Datt Radio and India Herald. Millions of children are denied their rights on a daily basis. CRY

For a collage of the Gala, see page 13 America works with grass-root projects, communities and local government bodies to ensure children have quality education, healthcare, and protection from child labor, child marriage and issues which hinder their development. Shefali Sunderlal says, “CRY

America believes that “YOU” can empower children’s dreams and be ambassadors of change for children’s rights. Your support allows us to ensure that thousands of children are able to go to sleep educated, healthy and protected. With the support from over 25,000 donors & 2,000 volunteers, CRY America has transformed the lives of over 716,386 children across 3,755 villages and slums.” She appealed for people to join CRY America as donors, volunteers and supporters and visit http:// for more information.

Indo-American News • Friday, MARCH 22, 2019 • Online Edition:


March 22, 2019


One Sarita Speaks of Hindi Poetry to the Gujarati Sahitya Sarita

Dr. Sarita Mehta (above) spoke at the monthly meeting of Gujarati Sahtiya Sarita (right).

By Jawahar Malhotra Sugar Land: The Gujarati Sahitya Sarita held its regular monthly meeting this past Sunday afternoon, March 17 at the Sugar Land Community Center and had a confluence of thoughts and ideas with those of its chief guest, the noted Hindi poetess and writer, Dr. Sarita Mehta. The GSS is an institution of writers, poets and others interested in Gujarati literature, established 20 years ago in Houston. It has more than 100 members and around half

of them attended the meeting. They had invited Dr. Sarita Mehta as a distinguished guest to address the group on the topic of Hindi poetry and literature. The program began with Saraswati vandana prarthana by Nikhil Mehta. The President of GSS, Fatehali Chatur, a dramatist and lover of Gujarati and Hindi poetry, who is well-known for reciting Ashok Chakardhar poems, welcomed Dr. Mehta. Also attending were GSS Executive members Vice President Shaila Munshaw, a writer who has


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published the book “Bal Gagan Vihar” based on daily incidents of special need children; Honorary Secretary Avani Mehta; and GSS Advisor Devika Druv, a poet who writes both in Gujarati and Hindi, and has written a few books, Dr. Sarita Mehta is the Chairperson for the newly formed Vidya Dham USA, which has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Government of Gujarat to teach Hindi, Gujarati, Sanskrit, Yoga and Ayurveda in her institution in the US.

Mehta spoke on the relationship of Hindi and Gujarati languages and literature with the Sanskrit language, and expressed her views in a poetic way. Not coincidentally, the word “Sarita” means fluent, flowing or river in Hindi. “It is a ‘beautiful Sangam (confluence) of Hindi Sahitya Sarita with Gujarati Sahitya Sarita to work together with my forthcoming Vidya Dham USA project to make ‘Peace Clubs’ in schools,” she said, adding that it was important to ”sow the seeds of Love” at the grassroots level

in children. Other speakers included Dr. Indu Shah, reciting a poem on Women Empowerment (Nari Shakti); Bhavana Desai delivering Phalgun geet and Navin Benkar, who wrote and published his first book in 1965, spoke on “Short Stories” (Laghu Katha). Others who spoke were Charuben Vyas, Prashant Munshaw, Janardan Shastri, Hasmukh Doshi, and Chiman Patel.

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6 March 22, 2019 COMMUNITY Geetanjali Radio Hosts Its Annual Fundraising Gala By Dr. Sarita Mehta Houston: Shoba Joshi and her son Hiren Joshi’s Geetanjali Radio show hosted its Annual Appreciation & Fundraising Gala on March 15 at India House. The was attended by like-minded guests, music lovers and supporters gathered to enjoy the fun-filled musical evening. The evening was filled with melodious live singing anchored by the talented brother of Shoba, Bansi Chabria, a versatile singer and Sharada Akunuria, the award winning singer, who was featured as one of the nine US-based personalities in Telugu Times 9th Anniversary edition. The duo captivated the audience with the rendering of some memorable old Hindi songs to an informal gathering, which joined in with the singers. The audience also appreciated a raffle of several items, including designer His and Her watches, and the dinner catered by Dawat Catering. Geetanjali Radio (KXYZ AM 1320) has been on the air since 1992 with the support of advertisers and local Houston listeners. For over 26 years, Shoba Joshi has been on the airwaves providing the best of classic Bollywood music and helping the community get connected with India and Indian culture. The program began with a

Shoba & Hiren Joshi with their chief sponsors and supporters at the Geetanjali Fundraising Gala on March 15 at India House.

Ganapati Bhajan sung by Sharada followed by a ceremonial lighting of the traditional lamp. John Espinosa (Hiren’s wife Casey’s uncle) emceed the event and invited special guests Jugal Malani, the President of India House and the Grand Sponsor for fundraiser, Vijay Pallod of Hindus of Greater Houston, Dr. Arun Verma, of Seeta Ram Foundation, Dr. Harshad Patel,Ashok Garg, Swapan Dharyawan, President of Indo-American Chamber of Commerce, Nisha Mirani, President

of ICC, Harsh Kumar of India House, Pankaj Desai, Naran Chawda; President Ekal Vidyaliya, Madhan Mohan Patel, Gitesh Desai, President Sewa International, Jay Deshmukh of Chinmaya Mission and Manohar Gidwani of Banke Bihari on stage to light the lamps. Milani congratulated Geetanjali Radio on its 26 years of successfully hosting the program, and praised Shobha and Hiren for their efforts. Gitesh Desai, who was recently awardedthePravasiBhartiyaSamman





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Shoba and Hiren Joshi extended their highest appreciation for the support to Geetanjali Radio to the Grand Sponsors Jugal and Raj Malani, Dawat Vatering for the delicious food, Krishna Sounds’ Darshak Thacker for the sound system, Touch of Elegance by Sara Dugal for decorations, Sudhakar Roy for photography, and Indo American News as well as the other Indian print and TV media for their year-round support.


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Award for 2019, the highest honor conferred on overseas Indian by the Government of India, was honored with a ceremonial shawl by Shoba Joshi. Ken Mathew Councilman from Stafford since 2006 in his brief speech congratulated the Geetanjali Radio. Sri Preston Kulkarni, who ran for Congress in a close race against Pete Olson, congratulated Shoba and Hiren, adding ”we are blessed to hear the amazing voices of two very talented singers Bansi Chabria and Sarda Akunuri.”




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March 22, 2019

Nirav Modi’s Daring Plan to Escape London: For someone who has remained doggedly elusive and managed to dodge an international manhunt for 15 months, Nirav Modi will remain confined to the United Kingdom until India’s extradition plea is diposed of. The controversial diamond trader fled the country along with his uncle Mehul Choksi in January 2018 after cheating Punjab National Bank of Rs 13,578 crore. During the last 15 months, Modi tried everything to evade prosecution including applying for a citizenship of Vanuatu, a small Pacific island nation 1,750 kms east of Australia; sought permanent residence in Singapore; consulted big law firms in the UK for obtaining a secure shelter in a third country and reports suggest that he was even planning a plastic surgery to change his appearance. However, after his arrest in London, he has literally run out of moves. Fugitive billionaire jeweller Nirav Modi, wanted by Indian authorities over a $2 billion loan fraud at state-run Punjab National Bank (PNB) was remanded in custody after appearing before a British court on Wednesday. Indian journalists are seen outside the Westminster Magistrates court in Lon-

don, Britain March 20, 2019. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls India asked Britain last August to extradite Modi, 48, whose diamonds have sparkled on famous Hollywood stars, after he was accused of massive bank fraud, charges he denies. The diamond magnate was arrested in the Holborn area of central London on Tuesday after he went into a bank to open an account and a member of staff contacted police. On Wednesday, he appeared at London’s Westminster Magistrates Court accused by India of two charges of conspiracy to commit fraud and conspiracy to conceal criminal property.

Indo-American News • Friday, MARCH 22, 2019 • Online Edition:


March 22, 2019


Kesari: Inspiring Story of Human Valor Shown with Technical Brilliance Story: A retelling of the Battle of Saragarhi where 21 Sikh soldiers fought against an Afghan army of 10000 men in the year 1897. Review: The Battle of Saragarhi is considered to be one of the most inspiring stories of human valour and bravery, not just in India, but the world over. Director Anurag Singh’s film Kesari is a fitting tribute to this story of Sikh soldiers. It’s a compelling war drama that combines strong emotions with blood-soaked action and retells an important chapter from the annals of Indian history. The film’s best moments are fuelled by a towering performance by Akshay Kumar. Kesari is a powerful film because it has an innate sense of emotional intelligence and raw shock value,

too. It showcases the atrocity of war and violence unabashedly, always condemning the bloodshed at hand and forever celebrating the bravery of men. It’s not just an action film, it’s a war drama that spends time in establishing its main characters and gives the audience a detailed and authentic

look at a story of true patriotism. The film is beautifully shot by Anshul Chobey and the production design Subrata Chakraborty and Amit Ray is equally important in making the dry and dusty setting of North-West province (now in Khyber, Pakistan) look authentic. Here’s where the CGI also

makes a big contribution in making the snow-capped backdrop of the place look pitch perfect. The editing, sound design and action choreography in Kesari are all topnotch. The inclusion of Gatka, the Sikh martial art is a fine moment, too. Even the costumes by Sheetal Sharma add to the intricate details. Anurag Singh’s entire technical team deserves a standing ovation for this film. You can’t craft a solid film without good writing and that’s where the efforts of Girish Kohli and Anurag Singh shine through as well. The writers have seamlessly woven in moments of high drama, humour, wit, sarcasm, tragedy and action into the narrative. The best part is, there’s also a lot of histori-

cal wisdom as the film keeps referencing Sikh and Islamic legends. At one point, the chief antagonist declares wars on the British and Sikh soldiers inciting jihad and his fellow leader reminds him that Islam does not propagate violence in the first place. Such is the detailed writing that every character in the film has an emotional point that helps the audience identify with them. With technical brilliance, intricate writing and thundering performances, Kesari is a loud war cry that evokes strong feelings of patriotism and it also wrenches your heart with its climactic tragedy. The visceral power of its visuals and emotions is staggering. -- Times of India

Indo-American News • Friday, MARCH 22, 2019 • Online Edition:


March 22, 2019

IACCGH Power Dialogue with Rep. Pete Olson Houston: The Indo American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston (IACCGH) continued its Power Dialogue series on Saturday, March 2 with the Board of Directors and select versatile group of business owners, professionals, and academicians at Aling’s Hakka with Congressman Pete Olson In his introductory remarks Executive Director Jagdip Ahluwalia explained the connection and the mission of the Chamber. He recollected that such a Power Dialogue was kicked off in 2013 with Congressman Olson. President Swapan Dhairyawan welcomed the Congressman and the attendees and commended the efforts of Pete Olson in making Sugar Land one of the best cities in United States. In his comments during the dialogue, the Congressman stated, “It is an honor to join the IndoAmerican Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston for their recent Power Dialogue lunch series. I feel blessed to represent one of the most culturally diverse districts in Congress because our diversity strengthens and enriches our community.” “Our economy has experienced explosive growth since the Republican-led Congress passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Over 1.6 million jobs have been created and our 3.7% unemployment rate

Power dialogue underway with Congressman Pete Olson (center). Rep. Olson is flanked on his right by IACCGH Executive Director Jagdip Ahluwalia and on his left by President Swapan Dhairyawan.

is at a 17-year low. The tax cuts have helped business both small and large companies expand and provide their employees with new opportunities,” explained Olson. In addition to discussing the benefits of tax reform, local job creators also raised other issues they face as they work to stimulate our economy. The top issue is the pace of renewal visas for folks wanting to come to the US from India to become local job creators. “Our team in Sugar Land is always happy to answer immigration or any other federal government related questions and serve as a liaison between our constituents and agencies,” Olson said. “Encouraging younger generations to be actively involved in our community is a passion I share with the IACCGH. Young folks

are our future and can expand the economic, cultural and societal progress our communities have already made. “The outreach and support IACCGH provides to lift up our children encourages community leadership that will strengthen our future. “I appreciate being invited to the Power Dialogue lunch series for open dialogue and discussion.” After a working lunch and Q&A from the attendees the event ended with the presentation of mementos and “Modi jacket” to the Congressman who was very delighted and wore the same immediately and mingled with the attendees with ease. For more information about the Chamber, visit


Sanjay Ramabhadran Sworn in as Texas Lyceum President

Sanjay Rambhadran (left) being sworn in by Judge Ravi Sandill.

Austin: Sanjay Ramabhadran was sworn in as the Texas Lyceum’s 2019 President on the floor of the Texas House of Representatives at the Texas Capitol in Austin. The keynote remarks were made by Harris County Commissioner, Rodney Ellis, who is an alumnus of the Lyceum and had served 26 years as a Senator at the Texas Capitol. He spoke of the importance of bi-partisan groups such as the Lyceum and how it could play a unique role in moving public policy forward. Judge R. K. Sandill of the 127th District Court of Harris County conducted the swearing in ceremony. The investiture was followed by a reception at the Lt. Governor’s Reception Room. Since 1980, the Texas Lyceum has been the premier non-profit,

non-partisan statewide leadership organization that identifies the next generation of Texas leaders, educates them on issues critical to the future of Texas and inspires them to action and stewardship. In his remarks, Sanjay Ramabhadran spoke about how his parents instilled in him the importance of community involvement and why civic engagement is an essential ingredient of his life. He emphasized the need to weave in the rich diversity of talents, thoughts and perspectives into the tapestry of Texas to ultimately result in public policy that is reflective of the values of all Texans. Speaking to the current polarization, he noted how the Lyceum, now more than ever, plays a critical role in convening leaders with diverse thoughts and perspectives.

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March 22, 2019

Yogi Patel to be President of Ekal Houston By Gaurang Budhiraj

Houston: Yogesh (Yogi) Patel connects easily with people and has a flair for organization – two talents that will serve him well in his new capacity as Ekal’s Houston Chapter President for 201920. An inner recognition that he has been “blessed with opportunities in life and is in a position to do something for others” also factored significantly in his decision to assume the leadership role. Yogi’s association with Ekal began when his friend Naren Chavda asked him to help organize and emcee an Ekal fundraiser two decades ago. This sparked his interest and he became a donor. On his return to Houston after an overseas assignment, Yogi became actively involved with Ekal. The decision to retire in 2015 and “not work for monetary gains” cemented this commitment. In 2018, when the Ekal Houston leadership decided to host a Gala, a first for the Houston chapter, they asked Yogi to take the lead. He took up the challenge and with the “support of dedicated volunteers and generous donors” raised a record one and a half million dollars. As President, his priorities are to create awareness about Ekal’s work in combating illiteracy in rural India among the Indian diaspora and build a closer relationship with donors. He will also focus on promoting many young professionals who joined the Ekal movement at the 2018 Gala. Presently, he is prepping for Ekal’s fundraiser event on June 1 at Cullen Performing Hall, UH – a Bollywood musical program with artists from India. A native of Mumbai, Yogi came to the US in 1970 to pursue his

Yogi Patel is President of the Ekal Vidyalaya Houston chapter for 2019-2020.

college education. He obtained his Bachelors and Masters in Chemical Engineering from TriState and Oklahoma State Universities respectively. He worked in the Oil and Gas industry for over 38 years including assignments in Oman and Azerbaijan and retired from BP in 2015. A career highlight was his role as Organization Capability Manager in BP. Yogi was tasked with boosting the competency of the workforce and developing people, a job he found deeply fulfilling. Ekal seemed like an extension of this project. Holding himself as an example, Patel emphasizes education as one of the keys to success in life. 70% of India’s population lives in villages with many lacking access to education and opportunities. No nation, he notes, can be prosperous or productive without an educated workforce. Early this year, Yogi and his wife Darshana visited five Ekal schools in Gujarat and Jharkhand and interacted with the children. Both were struck by their keenness to learn, the discipline with

which they conducted themselves and above all by the potential he saw in them. When asked what they would do with their education, they responded with aspirations of being engineers, doctors, police officers, teachers or serving in the army. Ekal, he witnessed, was providing them the opportunity to do so. Yogi’s sense of purpose of expanding Ekal’s vision and mission was reinforced that day. The Ekal movement with its oneteacher-school structure started in the late 1980’s with 60 schools near Dhanbad funded by the late industrialist Madan Lal Agrawal. It is a measure of Ekal’s success and effectiveness that there are 83,000 schools today in villages and tribal areas educating two million children annually (with more than 50% girls) and an annual growth rate exceeding 30%. Apart from free schooling, Ekal also provides vocational training, digital competence and agricultural education. Its Gramothan Resource Centers teach tailoring, carpentry and pottery and provide Ekal on Wheels (mobile buses fitted with computer stations to impart digital skills to children and young adults). Ekal’s underlying mission is to make the villages prosperous by skilling them; this in turn stems migration of youth to cities and urban areas. When not busy with Ekal’s work, the new President loves a game of tennis and golf and much to his wife’s delight often dons the chef’s hat. His wife Darshana, who enjoys interior designing, also lends her talents to Ekal. Ekal USA Secretary and past Ekal Houston President Naren Chavda says “Ekal Houston is privileged to have Darshana and Yogi devoting their time and energy to elevate Ekal.”

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India’s Iconic ‘Gandhi Peace Prize’ for Ekal New Delhi: “Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation (EVF)”, the largest global organization dedicated to integrated village development in rural India, was recently honored with the prestigious National Award in India for social work. On February 26, “Ekal Abhiyan Trust” (Ekal’s umbrella organization) was bestowed with ‘Mahatma Gandhi Peace Prize’ for its contributions in providing education to rural & tribal children and for empowering gender social equality in remote parts of India. This prize is conferred by the Govt of India under the Chairmanship of Hon. Prime Minister. The ceremony took place at the ‘Rashtrapati Bhavan’ in New Delhi and was graced by the Hon. President of India, Ram Nath Kovind as well as Hon Prime Minister N. Modi. On behalf of ‘Ekal’ the award from the Hon. President was received by M.L. Jain, a senior trustee of ‘Ekal Abhiyan’. This unique Honor carries

Senior Ekal Trustee M.L. Jain (left) receives the Gandhi Peace Prize from President Ram Nath Kovind as PM Narendra Modi looks on.

a grant of Rs 1 Crore, a Citation and a Plaque to commemorate the distinction. This prize was instituted in 1995 on 125th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi to highlight his concept of ‘Gram Swaraj Model’. In his laudatory message to “Ekal”, PM Modi commended its efforts to give


educational opportunity to children in tribal areas and empowering rural women-folks. Currently, “EVF” has been supporting 82,000 Ekal-schools across rural-tribal pockets of India and grooming almost 2.2 million children – more than half of which are girls.

Indo-American News • Friday, MARCH 22, 2019 • Online Edition:


March 22, 2019

SLCC Crowned as TCC Winter 2018 Champions, Gladiators Runners Up Houston: Sri Lankan Cricket Club (SLCC) and Gladiators squared off in a back to back final on 9th March 2019 and it resulted in SLCC winning by 22 runs and being crowned as TCC Taped Ball Winter 2018 Champions. This was their 3rd championship win in their 8th final. For Gladiators, this was their 7th final. SLCC dominated the tournament being unbeaten throughout while Gladiators had some close matches on their way to the big final. SLCC won the toss and elected to bat. Subodh was on fire in the first over taking wickets of Nalith and Ranil to put SLCC on 6/2. The situation got worse when Tanaji found Dulaj’s edge for the score to be 6/3. Things went from bad to worse when Mathew took the wicket of Bernard for 3 runs making the score 13/4. SLCC captain Dushan joined Gihan at the crease with a huge task of getting back on track from 4 early wickets down. Both batsmen batted sensibly rotating the strike and absorbing the pressure created by the very potent Gladiators attack. Just when the batmen were settling in Dushan got out to Sandeep when Mathew

Winning SLCC team (top) held on to a brilliant running catch in the deep for the score to be at 36/5. Things did not look bright again for SLCC when they lost their set batsmen Gihan for 20 to Tanaji. Scorecard was reading 45/6. Udesh and Thilan were the next to fall due to great fielding by Mathew and Amit and this re-

Gihan was the top scorer with 20 runs followed by Thusitha’s 19. Subodh, Tanaji, Ninad and Sandeep each took 2 wickets in what was a splendid bowling performance against a very good batting lineup. SLCC took the field trying to defend 93. The bowlers were on top of their game from the start bowling good line and length and putting the Gladiators openers on the back foot immediately. Emad was the first to fall off the bowling of Thusitha nicking to the wicket keeper Bernard. Amit and Ninad were next to follow due to top class fielding efforts from Thilan and Ramesh leaving Gladiators in world of trouble early in their innings. Aradhya and Sanman looked to take the innings back on track with sensible batand runners up Gladiators. ting. But with that pair gone and Mathew’s run out in quick succession, duced the score to 57 only for the the batting team looked in loss of 8 wickets. Thusitha joined deep trouble and the required run Ramesh at the crease and put on rate went to over 7 runs per over. a much-needed partnership of 26 SLCC bowlers made easy work of runs for the 9th wicket in 4 overs. the rest of batting line up. GladiaAt the end of 20 overs SLCC tors were all out for 71 runs after managed to put up 93 runs on the 17.3 overs. Aradhya was the top board for the loss of 9 wickets. scorer with 15 followed by Amit

at 12. All the SLCC bowlers and fielders brought their A game to the finals not allowing a single boundary in the Gladiators innings. Thusitha was the pick of the bowlers with 9/3 in his spell. The game was followed by prize distribution ceremony arranged by TCC and facilitated by Nanda Kumar, president of TCC. TCC and teams were honored to have Rajeshwari Dholakia Antani for presenting the awards. She is well known in the Houston cricket community and have had the privilege of representing Indian Women’s national team. Dushan Silvester, the captain of SLCC was presented with the championship trophy and Subodh Dongare, the captain of Gladiators was presented with the runners up trophy. Thusitha was adjudged man of the match for scoring 19 match winning runs and taking 3 wickets for 9 runs. For the tournament awards, Syed Mohiaddin was awarded the best batsman with 235 runs. Subramanya Upadhya was the best bowler for taking 16 wickets. Best wicket keeper award was shared by Swaroop CK, Debasish Das and Syed Mohiaddin for 17 dismissals. Anil Gorisipati was the best all-rounder with 179 runs and 8 wickets. Special award recipients were Prashant Manne and Sankirth Bathula for individual centuries and Vishnu Gardimalla and Joseph Alenchery for Hat-tricks.



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March 22, 2019

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March 22, 2019

Indo American News Founder: Dr. K.L. Sindwani Publisher: Jawahar Malhotra Editor: Pramod Kulkarni Reporter: Sanchali Basu

Four-fold Jump in “Cash for Green Card” Mumbai: The number of Indians getting investment linked EB-5 visas in the US, also known as “cash for green card”, has risen nearly four-fold in the past two years. According to statistics issued by the US Department of State, 585 such conditional green cards were issued to Indians during the 12-month period ending September 2018, as against 174 in fiscal 2017. Compared with the allotment of just 149 conditional green cards during fiscal 2016, this reflects a massive increase of 293% over a two-year period. In terms of number of visas granted, India toppled South Korea and Taiwan to take the third spot behind China and Vietnam in fiscal 2018. Over the past few years, hundreds of Indians, including those already working in the US have been lining up to apply for EB5, an investment linked visa. The wait has borne fruit, going by the huge jump in numbers. The EB-5 program requires an investment of $1 million and creation of at least 10 jobs. This limit drops to $500,000 for investments in certain targeted employment areas. Investments via regional centres that pool in money for various projects, especially in the real estate sector, are more popular than setting up one’s own


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operations. After holding a conditional green card for 21 months, an investor can apply for permanent residence, subject to fulfillment of conditions. Read also: Minimum investment for EB-5 visa set to be raised + Interest from Indians for the EB-5 visa has spiked in recent years, given that obtaining H-1B visas, including extensions, are now more difficult. “Extension of H-1B visas are also being subject to the same rigorous scrutiny with denial rates on the rise,” says Mitchell L Wexler, partner, Fragomen, a global immigration law firm. “Also boosting the demand is the fact that work authorisations available to certain category of H-1B spouses will be rescinded. Children of several H-1B workers, especially those who are in the queue for a green card under the employment category, are also ageing out. Post 21 years, they can no longer hold the dependent H-4 visa, but need to migrate to another visa (say student visa) or selfdeport to India,” says Wexler. Given the backlog which Indian investors could face in the near future under EB-5, investments must be planned in advance to protect the child’s interest,” he adds. TOI has reported earlier that even rich families based in India

tend to gift the investment sum to a child studying in the US. After completion of studies, the EB-5 visa enables him or her to work without having to throw the hat in an H-1B lottery. Only 10,000 EB-5 visas are issued annually, with a 7% per country cap. If a country doesn’t meet the cap, the unused visa quota is redistributed to other countries. Currently, Chinese and Vietnamese investors are facing a retrogression (which arises when the applications exceed the cap set) and the waiting time for Chinese is nearly 14 years. The current waiting period for Indians, to obtain a conditional green card after making an investment ranges roughly between 18 and 30 months, depending on how fast the application (526 petition) is approved. Indian investors too could face retrogression from July or August this year, which would increase the waiting time further by a few years. This will still be significantly shorter than the wait time for standard employment-based applications where the waiting time is 17-plus years. The US Department of State has also released figures of pending applications, as of September 30, 2018. The maximum pending applications were from China at 8,180, followed by 1,633 applications from India.

Indo-American News • Friday, MARCH 22, 2019 • Online Edition:


March 22, 2019


GLUDES University Launched to Stave Off a Dearth of Leadership By Jawahar Malhotra SUGAR LAND: As they left the Sweetwater Country Club, they clutched the crisp black and turquoise blue canvas briefcases they had been handed out and discussed the ideas they had just heard in the ballroom. Inside the briefcase was a copy of his second book – Roadmap to Success – by the very man who had outlined his vision to bring out the latent leadership skills in many of us. There was no doubt that they had witnessed the birth of a new institution focused on developing leaders, entrepreneurs and strategies for growth from a man who has already inspired hundreds of people to channel their inner voice and judgement for better outcomes in their areas of endeavor. Nozer Buchia was in his element, a man on a mission to show the multitudes that they have it within them to achieve greater things in life than what they have so far been accustomed to. From the podium in the ballroom, he outlined his plans for an idea of his own that he had been pursuing for many years: GLUDES (www. – Global Leadership University for Development, Entrepreneurship and Strategy – a new era institution that endeavors to create leaders and transform the

Nozer Buchia (center) with his launch team from left: David Jones, Patricia Bermudez, Tara Bush and Casey Salge.

way we influence others in our efforts for better results. The reception and dinner (sponsored by CUBIX Commercial Solutions ( was the first step to a day-long symposium on Saturday, February 23 for those who had registered to become the first class of GLUDES. Held on Friday, February 22, the event brought in about 100 people from across the community, including many successful Indo

Americans. Casey Salge, a member of the launch team and the emcee for the evening, welcomed the audience and opened with a short video which explained the university’s concepts enveloped in the term Gludification. The other launch team members Tara Bush, Patricia Bermudez and David Jones further expanded on the four pillars of leadership that GLUDES will focus on. Nozer then strode to the podium

Arya Samaj Greater Houston Celebrates 28th Anniversary

and described how he had developed the ideas outlined in his two books (Why Entrepreneurs Really Fail published in the USA & India and Roadmap to Success – coauthored with Dr. Ken Blanchard & Dr. Deepak Chopra ) and came up with what has become his mantra “Believe in yourself”. “I have failed many times,“ he said as his expressed himself at breakneck speed, “and 30 percent of the people don’t care that you have

failed and 20 per cent are happy you have failed. But I realized that there is no one definition of leadership, and GLUDES will define it,” he continued, adding “Leaders create leaders, they don’t create followers.” Nozer is an internationally acclaimed motivational, inspirational and keynote speaker with a passionate message. He and his wife Persis have been members of Houston’s Zoroastrian community for the past 16 years and have one son Kyrus (who is an ordained priest and a basketball player at Graceland University in Iowa). When he is not touring the globe for conferences or speaking engagements, Nozer visits Texas prisons to help rehabilitate inmates through motivational talks. Nozer outlined his plans for GLUDES as they work towards the accreditation process by partnering with other Universities to achieve their goal. GLUDES will provide leadership scholarships to deserving young wanna-beentrepreneurs and high school/ college students as a give-back to the community. He ended his motivational speech by stating “we all have equal opportunities… but we expect equal results… move your behind if you want to succeed!” was his final message to the audience.

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March 22, 2019

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