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NRI Pulse

October 2017

Atlanta’s Premier South Asian Newspaper October 2017


Free Copy


NRI Pulse

October 2017


NRI Pulse

October 2017


NRI Pulse

October 2017


NRI Pulse

October 2017

Atlanta’s Premier South Asian Newspaper October 2017


Free Copy

Couple Pledges $200mn To Florida’s NSU University

Events around town: Top left: Thousands attend spectacular Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations at Hindu Temple of Atlanta. Full report on Pg 8. Top center: The divine touch – Dr. K.J. Yesudas strikes all the right notes to captivate Atlanta. Full report on Pg 7. Bottom left: ‘100% CiNaRe’ - a evening of Dr. C. Narayana Reddy songs. Full report on Pg 9. Top right: IACA pageant crowns new winners. Full report on Pg 6.

Fort Lauderdale (Florida): (IANS) With a $200 million commitment, an Indian American doctor couple has teamed up with a Florida university to bring world class medical education to India and potentially transform healthcare in the country. With Zambia-born India-educated cardiologist Kiran Patel and his paediatrician wife Pallavi Patel’s gift, the Nova Southeastern University (NSU) located in picturesque Fort Lauderdale, near Miami, will open a new campus in Tampa, 400 km away. In addition to the donation, Patel said that he was committed to spend $200 million by 2019 to set up a 40 hectare campus near Vadodara in Gujarat with Nova willing to expand their operations to India. Lectures will be beamed to classes in Tampa with live interaction with professors from here. Later the same concept will be used for the proposed college in India, the Patels told IANS in an interview. American professors would be positioned in India and Indian professors brought here to sort of train the trainers to

academically produce students of the same calibre as those graduating in the US. Going a step further the college will be accredited with American bodies to start residency in India, Kiran Patel said. Indian students coming to the US will know how a world class institution works and Indian doctors will get an exposure to modern healthcare. “By that you’ll be solving the crisis of paucity of healthcare in India,” he said, noting that students, residents and post-graduates will start providing services when the college opens. As under US law, a medical college must wait for five years to expand, the medical college in India will open in 2024. Meanwhile, Kiram Patel said he was negotiating with an Indian partner to start a private university in India offering courses in arts, sciences and medicine. To be named Kiran and Pallavi Patel University, it will start offering Indian degrees, while the American college operating from the same campus in India will offer American degrees possibly from 2020.


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October 2017

Shreya Ghoshal Sweeps Atlanta Music Lovers Off Their Feet


this year marks her 15 years in the industry- a journey of many hits that the audience lapped up Atlanta, GA: Atlanta’s “amazing spirit” swept as the evening unfolded. Throughout the concert, Bollywood playback singer Shreya Ghoshal off her Shreya interspersed soul with vigor; soft melody feet at her magical concert at the Infinite Energy with the high octane. Some of her hits included Center on August 17, 2017. Despite looming storm threats from Hurricane Irma in Georgia, music lovers showed up in full force and kept the queen bee of playback singing and her live 40-member symphony orchestra charged as they delivered over three hours of soulful, mesmerizing music. “I know these are not the best times for the country, but I have witnessed incredible human spirit through my tour,” she said, adding that the Atlanta audience was the best in the country. The concert, which was brought to Atlanta by Paracha Entertainment, was part of Shreya’s 12-city US tour which was nationally promoted by Shri Balaji Entertainment. Shreya interspersed her own hits with some of Lata Mangeshkar’s memorable songs from the golden era of Bollywood. Calling herself a lifelong student of India’s nightingale, she even opened with Lata’s Roz shaam aati thi magar aisi na thi (Imtihaan) before dipping into her own rich repertoire with Nazar jo teri laagi main deewani ho gayi (Bajirao Mastani) and Bahaara (I Hate Luv Stories). Her other Lata Mangeshkar renditions inManva laage (Happy New Year), Pinga ga pori cluded 70s hits like Ankhiyon ko rehne de (Bob(Bajirao Mastani), Nanna re na na re (Guru), by), Main tere ishq mein mar na jaaoon kahin Gheruaa (Dilwale), Yeh ishq haaye (Jab We Met), (Loafer), Baahon mein chale aao (Anamika), Tere Oh radha teri chunri (Student of the Year), Chibina jiya jaye na (Ghar). In the second half of the kni chameli (Agneepath), Tujh mein Rab dikhta concert, Shreya went further back in time to give hai (Rab ne bana di jodi), Teri or teri or (Singh soul-stirring renditions of Lata’s golden hits, Lag is King). jaa gale ke phir ye (Woh Kaun Thi), Yeh zindA medley of songs from her first movie agi usiki hai (Anarkali), Ek pyaar ka nagma hai Devdas, with scenes of from the blockbuster on (Shor) and the Bengali/Hindi versions of Ja re ja the large screen prompted much dancing on the ud ja re panchi (Maya). aisles, as did her closing songs from Aashiqui 2. A delightful segment was the recreation of Earlier, Sa re ga ma pa Bengal winner Kinthe peppy, foot-tapping magic of the 70s through jal Chattopadhyay opened the concert with the a medley that included Helen’s memorable cabaArijit Singh hit Channa mereya mereya (Ae Dil ret numbers, Aa jaane ja (Intaquam), Piya tu ab toh Hai Mushkil) and Fakira maan ja (Yeh Jawaani aaja (Caravan) and the evergreen Dum maaro Dum, Hai Deewani). A very versatile singer, he went on an Asha Bhonsle hit (Hare Rama Hare Krishna). to sing some memorable singles including Abhi Shreya reminded her fans in attendance that

mujh mein kahin baaki (Agneepath), Tu mile dil khile (Criminal), Ae zindagi gale lagaale (Sadma), and paired with Shreya to effortlessly sing her hits. Emcee Gurdeep Kaur was a picture of poise as she held the evening’s proceedings together. Speaking to NRI Pulse after the concert, Atlanta promoter A.R. Paracha of Paracha Entertainment said he finds Shreya to be one of the best artistes he has ever presented. “Her personality and her complete devotion to music make her a pleasure to work with,” he said. Apart from Atlanta, Paracha Entertainment presented Shreya in four other US cities- St Paul (MN), Ra-

Shreya with A.R. Paracha. Photos by Niraj Sharma.

leigh (NC), Kansas City (MO), Detroit (MI) and Atlanta.

“Every city was a treat and very rewarding as a promoter, but Atlanta was unique” he said. “I had a candid conversation with Shreya before the Atlanta concert and we talked about the approaching hurricane. We decided to give it all we have. I wanted to give Atlanta a memorable concert, because I had not presented Shreya in Atlanta for four years.” “A week later, we talked again in Washington DC, and she said Atlanta was the best concert in the entire tour. Everything came together- the production, sound, lighting, and the best part- the audience, which was so in sync with Shreya and kept humming throughout.” Shreya was so enthused, she didn’t want to stop, Paracha added. “In other cities, she performs 2.30 or 2.45 hours. Here, she performed for over 3 hours!” Paracha said everything his entertainment company did in Atlanta was beyond what they needed to do in terms of production, venue etc. “We did that because we want Atlanta to be one of the best concert cities. We have people traveling here even from Chicago and New York because they are not happy with the venue or the way the shows are presented in their cities. We want Atlanta to be proud of how concerts are presented here.” A.R. Paracha has been in the business for 30 years and has presented top artistes- from Nusrat Fateh Ali to Jagjit Singh to A.R. Rahman to Broadway shows. “The love and dedication I have for music and the performing arts motivates me to keep going. It is a gift to be able to do what you love as a profession. I will continue to do it forever,” he said. His next major presentation is Mystic India, which will be touring the US in April/May 2018.

Dream, Believe, Achieve & Sparkle: IACA Pageant Crowns New Winners


ner, as they all had something unique and beauti- (Miss Teen India Georgia) and Malika Dumpala MsPersonality - Teen), Henna Mian (IACA Ms ful that they added to the pageant. (Mrs India Georgia). Personality- Ms & Mrs category & Best Talent) Atlanta, GA: Asha Udvadia was crowned The first runners-up were Anvita Sangawar The preliminary awards went to Aarya KhuThe contest included an evening gown IACA Miss India Georgia 2017, while Kritika (Miss India Georgia), Aarni Iyer (Miss Teen India rana (Best Hair), Varsha Lolabattu (Ms Photoge- round, an Indian attire round and a Q&A segment Kolla won the IACA Miss Teen India Georgia for the Mrs category and a talent round for 2017 and Manisha Sharma the IACA Mrs India the Miss and Teen segments. Georgia 2017 title at a glittering ceremony held The talent round showcased the conat the Infinite Energy Center in Duluth on Septestants’ skills beautifully and the audience tember 24. The closely contested pageant with cheered the loudest as the girls danced, the theme, 'Dream, Believe, Achieve & Sparkle', sang, presented monologues, played the saw a multitude of talent, striking confidence and flute, the violin and the piano, and even put beauty on stage. The winners will now participate up a demo of taekwondo moves to defend in the national Miss India USA, Miss Teen India oneself against an attacker. USA and Mrs India USA contests. Five top contestants were chosen from The pageant is organized by India Amerieach section of the pageant (except the ca Cultural Association (IACA) annually. This Miss category which had only six contesyear’s pageant team was led by Kiran Agnihotri tants, so there was no elimination round). as Program Director, co-Director Dr Lakshmi The top contestants then had to pick a Photos by Sumi’s Photography. judge’s name from a bowl, and answer the Rao, Sonjukta Halder, Shally Venkatesh, Prem Rahman and Shyam Bharmbhat. The music score question asked by that judge. The contesfor the program was compiled by Arijit Chowd- Georgia) and Parvathi Chikyala (Mrs India Geor- nic-Teen), Manisha Sharma (Ms Photogenic Miss tants took a diverse range of questions that tested hury. gia). & Mrs category), Aarni Iyer (Ms Congeniality- their confidence and presence of mind. Some of According to Kiran Agnihotri, in the eyes of The second runners-up included Henna Teen), Anvita Sangawar (Ms Congeniality- Ms the questions were: Do you consider yourself betthe organizing team, each contestants was a win- Mian (Miss India Georgia), Varsha Lolabattu &-Mrs category), Sonya Dannerberg (IACA Continued on Pg 18...


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October 2017

Dr. Yesudas Strikes All The Right Notes; Captivates Atlanta


Atlanta, GA: “To sing is to pray twice” St. Augustine said. The true essence of these words is realized when a musical legend’s complex Carnatic compositions, rhythms and notes transcend boundaries to create magic. Time stood still as Padma Vibhushan awardee Dr. K.J. Yesudas’s mellifluous voice reverberated at Lassiter High School Concert Hall in Marietta GA on Sunday, September 17, 2017. Co-sponsored by CAMAGA, the sold out annual fundraiser with a purpose of providing free eye care in India for Sankara Nethralaya Ophthalmic Mission Trust raised 150K at the event. Dr. Ravi Sarma and Dr. Seshu Sarma donated $160,000 from his family foundation named in honor of his mother, Pudipeddi Ramalakshmi. In the spirit of Gandhi-King teachings of Peace and Ahimsa, the Gandhi Foundation USA honored the maestro with “Ambassador for Music and Peace Award” for his outstanding contribution to humanity to bring the change we want to see in the world through his music. Bala Indurti opened the program with his welcome note, followed by S. V. Acharya, President of OM Trust, USA, who spoke about the objectives of the organization. “OM Trust has been instrumental in supporting the charitable work of Sankara Nethralaya” he said. Kicking off with Navaragamalika varnam Valachi Vacchi, the Gandharva Gaayakan, at 77, was at his galactic best transporting an already spellbound audience on a mesmerizing musical journey embellishing an array of ragas with well-chiseled sancharas making every note resplendent. Effortless renditions of Vatapi Ganapati, Paavana guru, Enda medu kundu raagava, Ma bhavani Durga jadambe, Nagu momu gala nemi, Annaporne vishalakshi raksha, Kseerasagara Shayana, Swami Ayyappa, Alay paayute , Kundalalonelu , Karunachaiyva Krishna, Tiruppar kadalil, Rajiva netraya , Allah maalik kaun pukaare, Hari Varasanam only elevated the enticing experience. The tani avarthanam between Mridangist Nandakumar and Ghatham artiste Santosh Chandru was exhilarating. Engaging and indulging his audience in his divine aura, Yesudas was happy to yield to their song requests. Kannada song Krishna nee begene baaro, Hindi songs Jab deep jale aana and Kishan dewaane delighted his diverse admirers. Yesudas was accompanied by Srikanth on the violin, T. S.Nandakumar on the Mridangam, Santosh Chandru on the Ghatam, and Varshney on the Thanpura. “I’m tuccha vanar says hanuman – if he says that then what am I,” noted the celestial singer, accentuating his music with humor and humility. Before starting the well known Vathapi Ganapathim in Hamsadwani, invoking Lord Ganesha, Yesudas jokingly remarked that Vathapi is not the only song on Ganesha that he knows and that he will be happy to sing another composition on Lord Ganesha but gave in to the audience request and continued with

Vatapi. Quoting an incident where he was spotted by some Hindi speaking folks on a train during one of his travels in India, Yesudas recalled singing Kishan Diwani, only to later be asked to sing a “Hindi” song “Gori Tera Gao”. “Is this not Hindi” he promptly asked, with a mischievous smile right after he sang Kishan Diwani, at the event, much to the amusement of his audience. “Sri Yesudas is traveling in the “Sapthaswara

Dr. Seshu Sarma who was unable to be at the event was instrumental in bringing the event to life. “Dr. Seshu Sarma, with her dedication and leadership, brought together prominent community leaders and organizations and a group of dedicated volunteers to help make the event a great success. The community must indeed thank her for her laudable efforts.” The Om Trust stated. OM Trust-USA is the fundraising arm of Sankara Nethralaya that holds annual charitable events

across the US to raise money for the eye hospital. Sankara Nethralaya, a charitable non-profit hospital started in 1978 by renowned Ophthalmologist Dr. Badrinath, offers high-quality eye care to everyone, regardless of their ability to pay. Doctors of Sankara Nethralaya have conducted numerous of eye-camps in villages around Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra. Enormous poor patients receive preventive eyecare and those with impaired eyesight receive restoration of their eyesight. To defray costs of these treatments the poor are not charged any fees for the pre-operative or post-operative care. Sankara Nethralaya depends on donations from Photos by Venkat Kuttua Photography philanthropic individuals and organizations. Chari” – the universe of melody that the seven notes Yesudas paid homage to Gandhi and King legcreate and is taking the audience with him in that acy at the invitation of the Gandhi foundation the journey,” said Dr. Ram Sriram, President of the Car- following day, Sep 18th. He garlanded the Gandnatic Music Association in his concluding remarks. hi Statue, ‘Peace Walked’ through the Visitor Cen“This is scintillating music. Each composition ter Museum and Ebenezer Baptist Church, and laid that Sri Yesudas sang during the concert inspired an wreaths at the King crypts. emotional and spiritual feeling in the minds of the He saw the Gandhi Room in Freedom Hall, listeners. Its only when an artist feels the Bhavam which was refurbished by the Indian American Culor emotions in his own heart, he can, in turn, inspire tural Association in 1987 with the help of Mrs. King, such feelings in the hearts of the audience.” He add- the Embassy of India, and financial support from the ed. medical doctors, Sood, Radhakrishan Vanapalli, and The enticing, enigmatic musical experience Naidu, and other community members. concluded with the Peace Award presentation by The Walk ended at Dr. King’s birth home on Gandhi Foundation Atlanta trustees Subhash Razdan, Auburn Avenue. Rendition of Raghupati Raghav Anthony Thaliath and team. concluded the event on a high note. Dr. Ravi Sarma spoke about his mother and the Sankara Netraylaya thanked core team Dr.Seshu experience of her significant loss of eyesight despite Sarma, Moorthy Rekapalli, Bala Indurti, Krishnadas having two doctors in the family adding that the in- Pisharodi, Rajeev Menon , Uma Narayan, Srikricident inspired his donation. On behalf of Dr. Ravi pa Eashwaran, Antony Thaliath, Ashok Kumar, Raj Sarma’s family, Yesudas handed over the check the Rengarajan and Raghava Thadavarthi and all the President of OM Trust. All artists were honored and volunteers who worked tirelessly for months to make volunteers recognized on stage. this event successful.


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October 2017

Thousands Attend Ganesh Chaturthi Celebrations At HTA BY MAHADEV DESAI Photos by Dr. B.K. Mohan & Anil Goud Atlanta, GA: The Hindu Temple of Atlanta in Riverdale, Georgia, (HTA) organized a spectacular Ganesh Utsav celebration from August 25 to September 2 2017, which attracted hundreds of devotees from Atlanta and places as far as Arizona, Pennsylvania and Florida. HTA, under the leadership of Ravi Chander (Volunteers Committee) has been hosting the Ganesh Utsav for the past four years. A majestic ten-foot eco-friendly clay idol of Ganapathi was again specially made in Hyderabad for HTA and installed in the specially built canopy in the forecourt between the Balaji and the Shiva temple. Ganesh Utsav celebrations began with Ganesha havan and a special abhisekham. On Friday there was a group Ganesh Chavithi pooja. A wooden stage backdrop constructed by Ananth and team of volunteers, under the canopy was an ideal setting for the dazzling idol of Lord Ganesh, resplendent with rich adornments, artistic décor, and lavish fresh vegetables, flowers, and fruit garlands. Through the nine-day Utsav, elaborate rituals and archanas were performed, and shlokas and Ganesha mantras were chanted by priests Sri Srinivas Sarma, Sri Pavan Kumar, Sri Siva Naga Kumar, Sri Sunil Kumar, Sri Gopal Bhattar, Sri Ravisankar, Sri Veda Vyasa and Sri Murali Krishna. A Ganesha-making workshop was held for kids. HTA supplied materials and instructions to over 2,000 families and kids to make about 2,500 environmentally friendly clay Ganeshas. Families enjoyed a day of designing and creating their very own personal Ganeshas. A puja for these handmade Ganeshas was performed in the mandap later. HTA provided laddu and vada for naivedyam, and parents brought Ganesha’s favorite food, modakam. The grand pooja by Sri Srinivas Sarma concluded with Mangala Aarathi and blessings to the children. Swathi and Shrikant emceed the cultural program with verve. The visarjan in Savannah, GA was emceed by Radhika and Nanda. During the festival, many Indian organizations like the Punjabi Society, GCANA representing the Gujarati community in Georgia, GATS, TANA, TAMA, ATA (to name a few) members and students of many Dance and Music Academies in Atlanta enthusiastically participated in the rituals and in the spirited day-long cultural program. The dance and music academies had trained their students and dressed them up in colorful costumes to perform in the festival. These students vied to outperform each other in solo and group items before the imposing idol of Lord Ganesha. The audience were treated to classical; contemporary, folk and fusion, dances, dance-dramas and devotional songs in Hindi and Carnatic. The Natyajyothi Kuchipudi Dance Academy performed captivating Brahmanjali and Ganesh Pancharatnam.Pushyami Gottipati, Artistic Director of Sai Nrityalaya, presented a riveting dance-drama Sri Rama Pattabhishekam,and also Ganesa Pancharatnam and her students presented Kolatam dance to Ramadasu keertanas. Akhil presented a heart-thumping Sri Ganesha Deva Sri Ganesha dance, while PK Raj and little elves performed a fast beat dance. There was

a hypnotic Odissi dance too by Bikhipta Panda. Srinivas from India sang folk songs. Neelima Gaddamanugu's Nataraja Natyanjali students also enthralled the audience with a few elegant dances. Some of Atlanta's personalities noted for their dancing and/or singing prowess (some of whom run their own dance and music academies) like Jyothi Chintalapudi, Revathi Komanduri, Sridevi Dadithota, Pushyami Gottipati, Sasikala Penumarthi, Padmaja Kelam, Divya Srivastava,

Renuka, Aparna Turaga, Hema Shilpa, Varsha Jinka and Savitha Viswanathan also regaled the audience either through dancing or singing. This was not all. The energetic dancers clad in white kurtas, (complimentary by Sunil Gotoor)and with saffron headbands played Holi with colored powder, and also performed Kolatam (dandiya) to high octane beat of dhols, The day was marked with nonstop entertainment and spiritual fervor. Over 5000 devotees and visitors participated in the preculmination of the nine-day celebration with a grand Ganesh Nimajjanam ceremony.

Temple chefs Ramakrishna Garu and Srinivas Garu had prepared three big laddus (Ganeshji’s favorite!). A lively, exuberant auction was conducted and the laddus were sold to the highest bidders, Suguna Rao, Subbiah Emani and Atlanta Sisters. Elephants are believed to remove all obstacles and bring good fortune. This year HTA brought an elephant named Ana from Gainesville, GA to add sparkle to the festival. Ana was decked out for the ceremony with Lord Siva's vibhuti and thilak.

Ana was a favorite with the children! The HTA hosted kids night out at the temple. The children were treated to stories, movies, watching early morning sunrise, yoga exercises, temple tour and games like kho kho. A huge procession around the temple was accompanied by live music. It was exciting to watch a shower of flower petals float down gently on Ganeshji from a helicopter! Finally, it was time to bid farewell to muchloved Lord Ganesh. Enthusiastic young devotees came out of the canopy, dancing and shouting “Ganapati Bappa Morya” to the pulsating beat

of dhols as Lord Ganeshji’s idol was placed in a truck, which was followed by HTA President Kusuma Kotte,Vice-President Sheela Lingam, Ravi Changer, priest Pavankumar, Sairam Surapaneni and devotees. They were warmly greeted at the SGVP Gurukul in Bloomindale, GA. Ganesh Visarjan ceremony was performed in Savannah, with joyous shouts and wishes for his return the following year. As they say, “with the immersion

ceremony, the Form (physical) returned to the Formless (spiritual).” The Ganapati idol became one with the water. One of HTA’s ardent devotees, Sudhir Agarwal who is President of Rajasthan Association of GA and IPN Atlanta Board member commented, “This is the greatest Ganapati Chaturthi celebration in the Southeast US.I feel spiritually uplifted when attending these celebrations. The vibrant ambience with color, festive spirit and coming together of the community is incredible. My special thanks to Ravi Chander ji for taking the initiative to start this in Atlanta so our kids can learn about the rich Indian culture by participating in the festival. I recommend all Indian-Americans in Atlanta to attend the celebrations in future.” HTA President Kusuma Kotte personally and on behalf of the Executive Committee and Board of Trustees thanked everybody that participated in this year’s festivities, and commented, “We are highly indebted to countless volunteers and their families for the stage decorations, all the photo and videographers, and Nate Natesan for promoting Swacch Devalaya. The Hindu Temple of Atlanta recognizes and deeply appreciates the efforts of all the organizations, Dance and Music Academies, Softpath System, LLC, Vaisheshi Jalajam, Mehul Raja, and media partners Wownow, NRI Pulse, Atlanta Dunia, Rashtradarpan, TV Asia, Khabar, Deccan Abroad and Mahadev Desai. The executive committee and management of HTA are deeply appreciative of Ravi Chander, chief coordinator of the festivities; and food committee chairperson Padma Koganti and her team with temple cooks who worked very hard to arrange Prasadam for all the devotees. Puja committee chairperson Phani Tummala along with the temple priests ably coordinated this year’s rituals and deity decorations. We are highly indebted to countless volunteers and their families in particular for devoting countless hours in spite of their busy schedules, to make the celebrations a grand success. The celebrations could not have been possible without the office staff and volunteers. We also beg the forgiveness of every one for any lapses and shortcomings and will make every effort to rectify them in the celebrations of next year.”


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October 2017

Truly Soulful: Maitri Hosts ‘100% CiNaRe’ Event In Atlanta

Atlanta, GA: “We had a great evening after a very long time. Every song was a classic and well rendered by our own Atlanta artists. A well-organized event.” That was the comment by a senior couple, who drove for three and half hours to attend ‘100% CiNaRe’ - a evening of Dr. C. Narayana Reddy songs on Sunday, Aug 27, 2017 in Atlanta. Not only that couple but everyone who was present at the event had one common thing to say: “A truly deserving tribute to Cinare with so many wonderful songs written by him”. In this event, put together by ‘Maitri’ - an Organization for Visiting Parents and Seniors in Atlanta, about 30 all-time favorites were presented by ten Artists. Led by Ram Durvasula, a well-known Singer and DJ in the US, the 4-hour program was attended by about 140 seriously interested audience. Songs like ‘Nannu Dochukunduvate, Eereyi Theeyanidi, Sruthi Neevu, Abhinavataravo, Sivaranjani, Charana Kinkinulu, Sipayee O Sipayee, Chamanthi Emite Eee vintha, Mrogindi Kalyana Veena, Swaramulu Edaina, Lalitha Kalaradhanalo, Telisindile, Mayadari Sinnodu’ etc. were well-received. As most Telugu speaking people all over the world know, Cinare who recently passed away, was a legendary lyricist, writer and an academi-

cian. He started his career as a lyricist in 1962 and soon his songs became an instant hit. Until late 80s he wrote about 3000 songs. Dr. Reddy wrote several lovely Ghazals in Urdu. He was awarded the Padmasri and Padma Bhushan. He received

Medicherla, Usha Mocherla, Bhanu Vavilikolanu, Padma Pucha and Srivalli Sridhar. During the break, Prabhakar Rao Kadiyala and Subba Rao Vudathu, members, spoke about Maitri and its activities. Mrs. and Mr. Subba Rao

ond Sunday. Prominent attendees included Mrs. Lakshmi Rao Pemmaraju, Dr. Seshu Sarma, Mrs. and Mr. T.R. Reddy, Kiran Pasham, Bala Indurti and Neelima Gaddamanugu. T.R. Reddy, Dr. Seshu Sarma, Bala Indurti Arundhati Koduru and Vivek Reddy praised Cinare for his extraordinary contribution to Telugu literature and the film industry. The event was sponsored by Kiran Pasham, Amruthavarshini, another organization that organizes literary events and Venkat Chundi. Refreshments were the courtesy of Biryani Pot while Photography were handled by John Gladson. Sidhu Sridhar and Nabhanyu Chiluveru were behind the stage handling the audio. Before the event ended, Viju Chiluveru, Director of ‘Maitri’ thanked the audience, artists, volunteers, sponsors TAMA and GATA (Telugu community Gnanapeeth Award for his unique piece of litera- Vudathu were felicitated for being the found- organizations) for sending out newsletters and ture ‘Viswambara’ in 1988. Earlier he won Sahi- er-members since the organization’s inception in everyone who helped during the event. He also tya Academy Award in 1973. 2008. Maitri helps all the visiting parents in At- thanked Praveen Puram and Niranjan Podduturi Earlier, Ram Durvasula, introduced the lanta come together and spend time by discussing for public and media coverage. Kishan Tallapalli singers Venkat Chennubhotla, Srinivas Durgam, topics related to post-retirement like healthcare, was thanked for his unconditional support to all Janardhan Pannela and Phani Dokka, Shanti literature, etc. Maitri meets every month on sec- Maitri events.

Hindu Vivah, Atlanta Hosts Singles Group Speed-Dating & Mixer Atlanta, GA: On Sunday, August 20th, Vivah’s Atlanta branch held its fall quarter singles event at the Roswell Holiday Inn with 63 participants and 12 volunteers. This was the Atlanta branch’s second singles event, and the seventh event for the organization as a whole. Members of the Atlanta Hindu community sponsored the event, making it free for participants. The work for putting it on was done by an all-volunteer force. Vivah is a nonprofit whose mission is to organize meetings for single Hindus so that they may find someone to marry. The goal is to promote marriage by providing a wholesome, alcohol-free environment and some structure in meeting people. Anyone may attend Vivah meetings. There are no restrictions other than that the person must be Hindu. Vivah was started in November of 2016 in Dallas by members of its Hindu community. A second branch was organized in Houston, with Atlanta being its third location. The event began with the chanting of three Oms and an invocation to Ganesha. A married volunteer gave a guidance speech on what to look for in a prospective spouse. The main activity for the event was group speed dating. All the participants were divided into several groups according to age. There was a group for people in their mid-20s, a group for those in their late 20s, and so on. Each age group contained

both men and women, and each group was seated in a circle. People would introduce themselves to the others in their age group and talk to each other for about ten minutes. The women would then shift

from their group to the next group while the men remained seated. In this way, the women would move from group to group until they had met all the men in their age range. The participants were identified by first name only and could choose to reveal whatever it is they wanted to about themselves. Contact information was not given out. As to be expected, most of the participants were programmers, analysts, and engineers with a few doctors and pharmacists as well. The hobbies people had were more varied however. One man took part in Spartan obstacle races. Another was a backup singer. Many of the people were committed vegetarians. The participants had grown up in many dif-

ferent cities and countries. There were people who had gone to high school in the Greater Atlanta Area and had graduated from Georgia Tech, Emory, and other Georgia universities. Others had grown up in different parts of the US, and there were those from various major cities of India. There were many ethnicities represented, from both North and South India. While most participants lived in Atlanta, a few had travelled for the event from neighboring states like South

of whom were widowed or divorced with grown children. There was a widow in her early 60s who had lost her husband to cancer. One man in his early 60s was divorced, with grown children. He said he had wanted to raise his children before trying to marry again. After the speed dating event, there was some freeform socializing. Participants could turn in sheets to the organizers giving authorization to reveal their contact information to select people they liked. As a side benefit, the structure of group speed-dating allowed people to meet and make friends with those of their own gender as well. Upcoming Singles Events The next Vivah event will be held in Dallas on Saturday, September 23rd. The next Atlanta event, for winter quarter, is scheduled for Sunday, December 3rd. The Atlanta branch of Hindu Vivah plans to organize these events on a quarterly basis Carolina and from states as far away as Kentucky, and so become an institution of the Atlanta HinOhio, and Texas. du community. To attend, volunteer, or donate, At this meeting, there was a separate group please visit or email: Atfor those who were middle-aged and elderly, all


NRI Pulse

..... City Pulse .....

October 2017

GINA Hosts National Nurses Leadership Conference In Atlanta BY MAHADEV DESAI Photos by Jennie Mathen & Joseph Anickat

ly hands-on workshop was conducted by Shaini Moonjeli, Mini Jacob, and Lilly Anickat, all of whom are Masters prepared nurses. The workshop allowed participants to decipher the difference between managers and leaders. The final speaker of the Conference was the NAINA president Dr. Jackie Michael who spoke about creating best practices and dynamic operating environments by addressing fiduciary responsibilities. There were a number of poster presentations done by nurses within NAINA.

for coming to the Conference and making it a lively and productive gathering. She commended the GINA nurses for their support and enthusiasm and said the success of the Conference was based on their collective efforts. The Evening Banquet was well represented. Senator Renee Unterman and Consul D.V.Singh were in attendance. Doctor Sujatha Reddy and Dr. Suprithi represented GAPI. Dr. Indrakrishnan introduced the chief Guest, GA Senator (District 45) Renee Unterman, who

Atlanta, GA: The Georgia Indian Nurses Association hosted National Association of Indian Nurses of America (NAINA)'s National Nursing Leadership Conference in the Impact Hall of the Ashiana Restaurant Norcross, GA. On Saturday, September 16, 2017. The theme of the conference was "Leadership for Professional and Personal Excellence." The Conference was well attended by local and out of state members (New York, North Carolina, Houston, Dallas, Maryland and Chicago). Grand sponsors included Grand Canyon University, Xenon Path and Georgia Association of Physicians of Indian Heritage (GAPI). Well known community figures Gokul Kunath, Srini Vangamalli, Dr. Udhayakumar, Dr. Sujatha Reddy, Dr. Jay Sampath and Dr. Suprithi Balyan also sponsored the event. Consul Mr. D.V.Singh from the Consulate General of India in Atlanta and a number of community dignitaries graciously supported the event. The conference was kicked off by the two emcees Jennie Mathen and Deepthy Varghese, with a prayer and warm welcome. NAINA president, Dr. Jackie Michael, DNP, WHNP, gave the presidential address to the registrants. Dr. Indrakrishnan, a Gastroenterologist from Gwinnett County and a member of the prestigious Gubernatorial Physicians work force board was instrumental in securing the participation of Senator Renee Unterman and Consul D.V.Singh for this Conference. Dr. Indrakrishnan in his speech appreciated the nurse’s immense contribution to the healthcare field. The keynote speaker of the conference, Marilyn Margolis, who is the current CEO of Emory Johns Creek, did a superb presentation inspiring nurses to identify and unlock their leadership potential. She was presented with a ponnada, plaque, and flowers in appreciation and honor of her time spent with the nurses. Thereafter, the lighting of the lamp was done by Marilyn Margolis, Dr. Indrakrishnan, Dr.Jackie Michael (NAINA president), Vidya Kanagaraj (GINA president), Lilly Anickat (GINA’s past President), Mary Jose (Founder of GINA), Dr. Sujatha Reddy, and Mary Phillip (1st Conference registrant & President of the New York chapter). Following that, Nancy Dias, PhD, spoke and is the curtaught on transformational leadership using Kourent chair of zes and Posner's theories. Health & huDr. Rebecca Wheeler, the current coordinator man services of the Georgia Nursing Leadership Coalition, edof Senate ucated the nurses on how to serve effectively on committee. organizational boards and motivated the nurses to Renee Unterfind their passion and get on a board to propel the man graduatmission of various organizations. Before the lunch ed with a RN break, nurse practitioner, Jennie Mathen, presentdegree from ed on the content of leadership from bedside to Georgia State the boardroom, developed by Agnes Therady, the University current Chief Nursing Officer of Cook County and a degree hospitals in Chicago. in social work The afternoon session was kicked off by Dr. from UniverLetha Joseph, DNP, on leveraging technology for sity of Georleadership excellence. She spoke about the varigia. He also ous ways technology can be used to develop leadIn her concluding remarks, GINA’s pres- praised Senator Unterman for being instrumental ers and how to use it to excel as a leader. A live- ident Vidya Kanagaraj thanked all the attendees in passing of many bills at the Georgia state Cap-

itol, which are benefiting seniors, children & disadvantaged citizens of Georgia. Senator Renee Unterman during her speech recalled how small Gwinnett County was when she moved in. She was the first woman to run for the city council of Loganville, GA. She not only won but later also became the Mayor and subsequently a senator for the past 15 years. She encouraged the nurses not to fear anything and come forward to take various leadership roles in the current fast changing healthcare laws & regulations. The highlight of the evening was the cultural program that was emceed by Shirley Parayil. There were invidual performances by Suja Moonjeli and Jeslyn Regi, Kevin Jojo and Austin Tharakan. Daniel George and Mr. Joseph Anickat enthralled the audience with their beautiful singing. The true show stopper was the piece titled “Incredible India – Journey from Kerala to Kashmir”. There was a power point presentation of the states followed by their traditional dance forms. Tamil Nadu was represented by Akshita Gopikrishnan, Vibhedhini Ganesh, Shravya Prakash, Vrithiha Selvamuthukumaran, Meddha Sakthivel, Thariqa Gajendra and Sarvesh Sakthivel. They danced to Vazhga Nirantharam Vazhga a Bharathiyar composition choreographed beautifully by Pavithra Prakash. Kerala was represented by a scintillating 'Mohiniyattam by Sridevi Ranjit of Laasya School of Dance. Next up was a Vigorous Bhangra dance representing Punjab by Anita Augusthy, Nicole Jacob, Robin Jacob and Jasmine Anickat. Rajasthan was highlighted by the colorful folk dance Mai Nah Pehanu performed by Sheena Mathew, Jenimol Biju and Cynthia Lukose. Snowcapped Kashmir was represented by Seema Gijo and Somlin Gijo a Mother-Daughter duo who danced to the popular Bhumro bhumro syamrang bhumro song. All the dancers then gathered on the stage with Vani Manoharan depicting as Mother India and sang the rousing song Vande Mataram. There was pride and joy in all those gathered at the scintillating presentation from friends and family of GINA. The night ended with National Anthems of America and India highlighting our shared traditions.


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NRI Pulse

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NRI Pulse

.....City News .....

October 2017

You Need Meditation To Give Life To Your Life: Archna Didi


that the problem is inside you, finding a cure Atlanta, GA: Archna Didi was in town to through meditation is easy. When you practice meditation, you automat“share her experiences in meditation with Atlanically learn to balance your personal and profestans”, as she put it, at the Impact Conference Censional lives. You stop your inner and outer battles ter in Global Mall on September 17th and 18. The workshop was hosted by Shiv Aggarwal, owner of Global Mall. Speaking to members of the media on the sidelines of her workshop, “Stress free meditation, the gateway to physical, mental and spiritual excellence”, the meditation guru answered questions about the importance of meditating, finding a satguru and about Celebrating Life Foundation, a wellness and spiritual organization that she runs. Her personal journey. I was four years old when I started to meditate on my own. Eventually I met my Satguru who led me to enlightenment, and commanded me to go forward and share my experiences, my Ananda (bliss) with others. Since then, I have been traveling the world, organizing workshops, sharing what I have experienced with fellow beings. The importance of meditation. If you want to give life to your life, you need meditation. Right now we are living, we are breathing, but that is not life. Meditation is knowing yourself. The technique hardly matters- you can either focus on your breath, on a light source or chant mantras- it is the end goal that matters, which is to truly know yourself. The reasons for modern day stress. We are fighting stress on the outside, while the real reasons are inside. Once you recognize

should concentrate on being the right shishya (student). The problem in spirituality is that we only focus on finding the right guru, rather than focusing on ourselves. When you focus on being the right shishya, the right guru will find his/her way to you.

Chakras and Kundalini awakening. Chakras are the seven energy centers in your body. When you focus on those subtle energy points, they open and attract cosmic energy inside your body. Each chakra is related to glands, organs, Archna Didi with Shiv and Anushi and even your beAggarwal. Photo by havior. When the chakra opens, it and start smiling. You will see the right from the is like the blossoming of the flower. However, in wrong and make good decisions. Even an alco- chakra meditation, you need to balance chakras holic will find no need to battle his addiction. He and that is why you need a satguru. Balancing of will simply give it up once he starts to meditate. chakras not only removes blockages, illnesses, stress and depression but brings out the hidden Finding the right meditation guru. potential of an individual. All ailments can be You need a satguru, not a teacher. A satgu- cured through chakra sadhana. It is like the kalpa ru is someone who has experienced bliss and can vriksha (divine wish fulfilling tree). hold your hand and guide you into having that experience. Celebrating Life Foundation. As for finding the right satguru, I think you I started the Celebrating life Foundation sev-

en years ago to share my experiences in meditation. I travel the world and do social work. The foundation supports orphanages, old age homes, handicapped and blind children. We have tree plantation drives, and blood donation camps to benefit the army. I have held workshops for army and police officers. Why does she travel the world? The world over, we have forgotten who we are. Ananda (bliss) is basic to each of us, and we can all have it. I want to share what I have experienced with the world, because geographic boundaries are not inside you. They are outside things. When you meditate, you realize that all the universe is one, and that universe is inside you. Was it harder to be taken seriously as a woman meditation guru. No. It hardly matters to me if the other person is taking me seriously or not. I am not here to impress others. I have something that I want to share. If the other person is serious he will get it. If he is not, it does not matter. Speaking to NRI Pulse, Shiv Aggarwal who hosted the workshop said he hoped the community would benefit from Archna Didi’s meditation techniques, as much as he had. “I used to have low energy, but ever since I started meditating, I am feeling better. I am living in the present momentwhen I am eating, I am just enjoying the texture and taste of the food. When I am talking to you, I am aware of the moment, and only talking to you.” He said Archna Didi would be back next year with more workshops.

Anand Entertainment Hosts Dance Fever 2017 With Geeta Kapoor


contemporary. The much-coveted prize for the adult solo Atlanta, GA: Celebrated judge of the reality show ‘Dance India Dance’ and Bollywood cho- dance category went to Sagnika Mukherjee from reographer, Geeta Kapoor, was bowled over by Sagnika Dance School who showed her class with Atlanta’s dancing talent at the inaugural Dance Bharatnatyam, Oddissi and Bollywood steps. She Fever 2017 held at the Infinite Energy Center in Duluth on September 2, 2017. “I honestly didn’t expect to see so much talent in Atlanta’s small community,” she gushed at the end of the four-hour long glitzy program that saw a host of local solo and group dancers charge the auditorium with their artistry and athleticism and some very inspired choreography. The inaugural dance contest was hosted by Bhavana and Vishal Anand of Anand Entertainment, a new and upcoming entertainment company with the goal of keeping the Indian culture alive in the United States. The show began at 2 pm with an opening act and tribute to Geeta Kapoor (or Geeta Ma as she is fondly called) by Shiv’s Institute of Dance. The hall was packed with around 500 people, all mesmerized the audience with her dance medley cheering for the contestants. Prestigious dance on Radha and drew praise from judge Kapoor schools and many self-taught participants from who said: “I think India is missing you. You all over the United States competed with one an- should have been a Bollywood Star…Beautiful. other in both the group and solo category. Con- I mean, it’s very rare to find someone so perfect testants were divided in to 3 categories based on during the dance with expression & you are one age: kids, teen and adult and there were separate of them.” The second prize in adult solo went to Sriprizes for solo and group. The audience witnessed different styles of dances ranging from classical, devi Ranjit from Laasya School of dance who also semi classical, Bollywood, fusion, hip-hop and got accolades for her perfectly executed classical

dance. The kids solo winners were Kunsh Sharma (1st prize) and Sharanya Shetty (2nd prize). The teen solo winners were Aarya Kothari (1st prize) and Akhil Turaga (2nd prize). In the group segments, the 1st kids group prize went to Atlanta Nritya Academy and the 2nd prize to Shiv’s Dance Academy. In the teen group, the 1st prize went to Prem’s Dance Studio and the 2nd prize to Shiv’s Dance Academy. In the Adult group, the 1st prize was won by Atlanta Nritya Academy and the 2nd prize went to Prem’s Dance Studio boys group. Atlanta Nritya Academy came out as the biggest winner of the night, winning first prizes for the group dances in the kids and adult category. The group dances were much contested with many great performances. Atlanta Nritya academy with their dancers Aruna Gutta, Sudakshina Mukherjee, Roshnia Hariharan, lavany Hariharan, Kriti Pandey, Jyothi Balakrishnan, Barshana Chaudhury, Ranu Gupta raised bar for all. Geeta Kappor praised the lead choreographer Sudakshina Mukherjee for her

excellent choreography and gave the team a standing ovation. Shiva institute of dance, another premier dance school in Atlanta got two second prizes in the group category. The boys of Shiva institute Aneesh, Gunahyam, Sarvanam, Hans, Krithanjay, Mohit, Sarnay, Varunson, Thejase made their teacher proud. Prem dance academy the leading dance group set the stage on fire with their electrifying performances. They got the first prize in group-teen category and another second prize. Geeta Ma flowered praises to Prem Rehman, the lead choreographer, who narrated how he started from a humble background in Bangladesh and went on to build one of the most successful dance schools in Atlanta. The night ended with prize distribution and a closing performance by Prem’s Dance Studio. The title sponsor of the show 27th Investments along with other sponsors Indian Friends of Atlanta, Swad, Patel Brothers and Cargo Express were thanked. The program was kept alive and rolling with some very masterful emceeing by Monty Kataria who charmed the audience with his wit and easy banter. Speaking to NRI Pulse, organizer Bhavana Anand said she was very happy with the enthusiastic response to the first ever Dance Fever. “Performing in front of Geeta Kapoor opened several future doors to fresh new faces. But there was so much local talent that could not participate because we had to close registrations,” she said. “Next year, we promise a bigger and better platform for local talents to showcase their dancing skills.”


NRI Pulse

..... City News / NRI News .....

October 2017

Women in Leadership– Breaking Barriers: Conference Held In Atlanta

Atlanta, GA: The Indo American Community Services (IACS) - one of the premier national not for profit organization expanded to Atlanta and held its first event - the South Asian Women’s conference - on September 9th at the Double Tree in Roswell, GA. The theme was ‘Women in Leadership - Breaking Barriers.’ The South Asian Women’s Conference provides an interactive forum to educate and empower women and provide networking opportunities to connect, learn and grow in their careers. Featured keynote speakers included Anisha Madan, VP-Finance and CFO, Change Healthcare, Kanchana Raman, President, Avion Networks and Nithya Narasimhan, VP-Client Experience, ADP. They shared many aspects of leadership including the challenges they faced along with their personal experiences and practical advice to help professional women achieve their goals. The conference began with a welcome note by Lakshmi Nagamohan, from the IACS Executive Team. Anu Sundaram, Selvi Sankar and Katyayani Dave from the organizing team, introduced the keynote speakers. In her talk, Anisha mentioned that “there is a big gender gap today for women in leadership, but it is getting better. The important message is that the effort matters as much as the destination.” Anisha recommends leveraging your foundation and expertise, and challenging yourself to do more. She says, “you become a fast learner when you stretch yourself beyond your comfort zone and learn quickly to survive when you take up challenging jobs and roles.” She also adds that no woman is an island and suggests making smart changes and taking up calculated risks that will ultimately payoff. Anisha has worked for over 15 years in a finance leadership role in various companies. She is an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and has also completed her Ex-

US Resumes Premium Processing Of H-1B The US has resumed the premium processing of all H-1B visa petitions subject to the fiscal 2018 cap, five months after it was suspended to check the rush of work visas popular among Indian techies. Premium processing also resumed for the annual 20,000 additional petitions that are set aside to hire workers with a US master’s degree or higher educational degree. Premium processing of H1B visa was suspended in April to manage a huge rush of new petitions. When a petitioner requests the agency’s premium processing service, the USCIS guarantees a 15-day processing time. “If the 15- calendar day processing time is not met, the agency will refund the petitioner’s premium processing service fee and continue with expedited processing of the application,” the USCIS said. It said that the service is only available for pending petitions, not new submissions. Premium processing remains temporarily suspended for all other H-1B petitions, such as extensions of stay, the release said.

ecutive Education in Strategy from the Harvard Business School. Kanchana talked about her path to success as an entrepreneur. She believes that no matter how hard the path gets, stay focused on the path of integrity as that is the foundation of any company. She says, “there is no work-life balance when it comes to women. Try living in the present, focus on a split schedule and spend quality time with the family.” She commended the participants for attending the event, and said if you are not networking you are not working. And that entrepreneurs, need to be constantly strengthening their network by reaching out to support organizations and mentors who will help them grow. Above all, she says invest in yourself. As a chair and board member in several women’s organizations, Kanchana applauded the work of IACS supporting South Asian professionals. Kanchana holds an MBA from Goizueta Business School, Emory University to augment her broad experience in telecommunications and technology, which spans over 20 years. Nithya elaborated on the conference theme by saying that leadership is not something you grow up on and that these behaviors and characteristics need to be inculcated since a very young age. She says, “resilience is the key to succeeding and how you bounce back is going to make the difference.” She also adds that it is important to have a positive attitude and create competencies – find the competency in you and in others.

Success is to collaborate and not compete. Nithya en entrepreneurs. Sunita Davis introduced the says, “women are making a big difference every entrepreneurs. Uma Lakshman, Founder of the day, and the more we rise and lift others as we Big Bangles Theory started her entrepreneurial endeavor as an extension of her passion to create a niche market for handmade bangles. She developed an app with a unique algorithm that helps women find their bangle size. She recently launched the online e-commerce website www. Shachi Srivastava is a selftaught artist from India and is passionate about exploring, and creating paintings that resonate with her inner thoughts. She excels in intricate and magnificent designs in her artworks, which are inspired by folk and tribal art styles from India. Shachi believes that, “Colors are the messengers of happiness to every rise, many women will come to the workforce soul that it touches”. and these positive behaviors is what will break The conference was sponsored by Dover, barriers.” She also emphasized that South Asian ITW and Numeric Technologies. The grand sucWomen are good at building networks in the so- cess of the conference is attributed to the IACS cial sphere and that they should extend the same conference organizing team that included Lakshstrategy to make connections at work as well. mi Nagamohan, Anu Sundaram, Katyayani Dave, Nithya has an MBA from the Goizueta Business Selvi Sankar, Sunita Davis, Prema Rajan, Sree School at Emory University and a post-graduate Kummarapurugu, Kayal Muthusamy, Vidya Sudegree in Management from the Indian Institute kumaran and Sujatha Narayanan. of Management in Bangalore, India. IACS has been supporting the South Asian The presentations were followed by a Q&A American Community in various cities through its session moderated by Katyayani Dave and Anu Diversity Career Expos, Women's Empowerment FoSundaram in which panelists addressed questions rums, Professional, Leadership, Business and Entrefrom participants. Some of the questions were fo- preneurial and HR Conferences. IACS provides stucused on handling work life balance, mentoring, dent internship opportunities in both public and private entrepreneurship, personality development, etc. sectors, provides free job portal, mentoring and career The conference also featured local wom- counseling services.

DHS To Collect Social Media Data Of Immigrants Washington: (IANS) The US Department of Homeland Security will soon begin collecting social media data from all immigrants in an effort to more effectively screen those coming to the country, a media report said. The department will begin collecting the information on October 18, the day the Trump administration’s new travel ban on citizens of seven countries is set to take effect, the New York Times reported. Green card holders and naturalized citizens will also have their social media information collected, with the data becoming part of their immigration file. It was unclear whether the monitoring would take place only in the application process or will continue afterward. The department published the new requirement in the Federal Register, saying it would collect “social media handles, aliases, associated identifiable information and search results” which would be included in an applicant’s immigration file. It said the data would come from “publicly

available information obtained from the internet, public records, public institutions, interviewees and commercial data providers”. The data collection has alarmed privacy groups and lawyers, who expressed concerns on about how the department would use the information. Advocates say they also worry that the monitoring could take in information on American citizens who communicate over social media with immigrants. “This would undoubtedly have a chilling effect on the free speech that’s expressed on social media,” said Faiz Shakir, the national political director for the American Civil Liberties Union. “This approach is ineffective to protect national security and is one more example of the Trump administration’s anti-immigrant agenda.” Efforts to collect social media information are not unique to the Trump administration. During the Obama administration, the department had begun asking visitors to voluntarily provide social media information and had four pilot screening programs, the report said.

Young Scholar Award For Google Geek Bengaluru-born 28-yearold Google research scientist Ananda Theertha Suresh in New York has won the Paul Baran Young Scholar award for 2017, the US-based

Marconi Society said. Suresh has been selected for this year's Young Scholar award for creating technology that makes search faster and easier even on low-end mobile devices, with basic Internet. The Google geek, has a PhD from the University of California-San Diego. The four-decade-old Society, named after Noble Laureate Guglielmo Marconi (1874-1937), who invented the radio, is also honoring two other Indian-born scientists -- Thomas Kailath with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his stellar contribution to modern communications, and Arun Netravalli with the Marconi Prize for his pioneering work in digital video technology used in mobile phones and television sets.


..... Features .....

NRI Pulse

October 2017

Dispelling The 10 Myths About Hit 'Refresh' To Transform Your Studying Abroad In The U.S. Life, The Satya Nadella Way

BY KRISTEN MOON The U.S. has the largest number of international students enrolled in its universities (more than 1,000,000). Over 5% of the students studying in the U.S. are foreign students. Universities report that the number of international students keeps growing year after year. Attending college in the U.S. is a goal for many international high school students. We are dispelling 10 myths about Studying Abroad in the U.S. This goal can be achieved, let us show you how. 1. I need to be rich to attend college in the U.S. Yes, American universities can be expensive. However, sticker price does not always equal net price. There are merit-based scholarships available to international students. Also, the cost of attendance can vary greatly from private and public universities. It is often less expensive to attend a public university.

works to advance international education.

8. The steps involved in applying to U.S. colleges are completely different for international and domestic students. The steps involved in applying to U.S. colleges are largely the same for international and domestic students. But, international students need to undertake a few additional steps to make up for the differences in the school curriculum, grading system, and language. • The majority of the colleges in the U.S. require international students to obtain a minimum score on language tests, such as the TOEFL.


2. I do not qualify for financial aid. International students do not qualify for federal aid. However, they can often qualify for merit-based scholarships. Each university decides how they want to distribute their funds. If they want to offer international students institutional aid, they can. 3. I am fluent in English, therefore I do not need to take the TOEFL. There is no standard application process for U.S. universities. For this reason, students must check each university's criteria for the TOEFL exam. Numerous universities require international students, from a country where English is not the national language, to take the TOEFL exam. Each university also sets their own TOEFL passing score.

•As an international student, you will also need to supply the university with a certification of finances. The university wants to ensure you can afford the tuition and living expenses before you obtain a visa and move to the U.S.

BY NISHANT ARORA Title: Hit Refresh; Author: Satya Nadella; Publisher: Harper Collins When you hit "Refresh" in a web browser by clicking the little arrow -- or press the "F5" function key -- it quickly updates the web page, without wiping out anything but opening the page afresh. For India-born Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, hitting refresh in life is something any person or organization looking to make a sustained impact over a long period of time must learn to do and implement. Some people and organizations have one major "hit refresh" moment and others hit refresh often. In "Hit Refresh" -while taking the readers

quantum computer and to identify revolutionary applications that will run on it. In the book, Nadella sheds light on the ongoing activities and future plans to build new computational methods for programming the quantum computer. "Through quantum computing, we can unlock solutions to problems in areas such as AI, clean energy, global warming, materials design and much more," Nadella told the packed house at "Microsoft Ignite". At "Station Q", writes Nadella, Microsoft researchers and collaborators are working days and nights to overcome challenges in the path towards universal quantum computing. "At Microsoft, we're on the cusp of empowering a quantum revolution with our unique, topological approach," he told the gathering at the Orlando event, hop-


• International students applying to U.S. colleges may also be required to have their transcripts and/ or other educational credentials assessed by an official organization. This is because the grading system used by certain schools is different from the typical 4.0 scale utilized in the U.S • International Students have to determine the legal requirements associated with staying in the U.S. and apply for a student visa.

9. It is difficult to obtain a student visa. Once a student is accepted to a university, the steps are fairly straightforward. The first step for international students is to ensure the university, they are applying, is accredited by the U.S. government’s Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP). Only SEVP-approved institutions can enroll students in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). After an international student has been accepted, the university will enroll them in the SEVIS system. SEVIS will 4.The TOEFL and IELTS are both accepted at provide the students with the necessary documents to U.S universities. apply for a U.S. student visa. Sometimes. The TOEFL and IELTS exams have numerous differences. The TOEFL is more wide- 10. As soon as I graduate, I must leave the U.S. ly used as an entrance exam at universities and Upon graduation, many international students therefore, offers only academic English. While hope to stay in the U.S. These students can apply the IELTS offers an academic option in addition for twelve months of optional practical training to a general test. (OPT). This allows them to work in fields related TOEFL has a wider acceptance in U.S. uni- to their areas of study while building their skill-set. versities. Almost every U.S. college will accept The difficulty is that not just any job will do. the TOEFL score. This is not always the case for The job must be specific to their field of study. the IELTS. Generally speaking, if you're applying An additional option is to pursue an advanced to an American university, go with the TOEFL. degree. This will extend the student visa. After the advanced degree is obtained, the student can apply 5.Applying to college in the U.S. is centralized. for an additional twelve months of OPT. Things would be much simpler if this were true. The process of finding long-term employThe college application process varies from col- ment and receiving company sponsorship is not lege to college. Each college sets their own rules, always easy. But, it is certainly doable. The more criteria, and deadlines. There is no one true "uni- specific and in-demand your major is, the easier versal" application. the process becomes. 6. Since English is not my first language, colleges Studying will not expect my essay to have perfect grammar. abroad in the Nowadays, colleges are more competitive than U.S. is a lifeever. In order to study at a top-tier university, long dream students must have a strong grasp of the English for many. That language and grammar. dream can be realized with 7. The U.S. does not have very many internaproper planning tional students enrolled in its universities. and diligence. For the 2015-2016 academic year, the number of Kristen Moon is an independent college couninternational students at U.S. colleges exceeded 1 million, according to a recent report from the In- selor and founder of She spestitute of International Education, a nonprofit that cializes in undergraduate college admissions.

through his personal jour- Bill Gates, who has known ing that "quantum comney from Hyderabad to the Nadella for more than 20 puting will make AI even more intelligent". company's ongoing transBill Gates, who has formation at Redmond, years, writes in the Foreword: Washington State, in the "Satya has charted a course known Nadella for more than 20 years, writes in US -- Nadella is confident that the knowledge he in- for making the most of the op- the Foreword: "Satya has charted a course for makherited in India is helping him write new codes of portunities created by technol- ing the most of the opporlife for Microsoft's global ogy while also facing up to the tunities created by technology while also facing up to audience: Be it Cloud, Mithe hard questions." crosoft 365, Windows 10 hard questions." "Ideas excite me," and the emerging disrupNadella explains. "Empative technologies. "Looking back, I have been influenced by thy grounds and centers me." In his latest blog on the book, Nadella both my father's enthusiasm for intellectual engagement and my mother's dream of a balanced wrote: "Books are so often written by leaders looking back on their tenures, not while they're life for me," he writes. After attending schools in Srikakulam and in the fog of war. What if we could share the Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh, Mussoorie, Delhi journey together, the meditations of a sitting and Hyderabad -- and later flunking an IIT en- CEO in the midst of a massive transformation?" "Hit Refresh" is about individual change, about trance exam -- Nadella landed in the US. There was no master plan but a call from the transformation happening inside Microsoft and Microsoft, for him, "was time to hit refresh the technology that will soon impact all of our lives: AI, Mixed Reality and quantum computing. again". The book is "about how people, organizations Today, Microsoft is at the leading edge of and societies can and must transform and 'hit reCloud-based technologies as it infuses capital fresh' in their persistent quest for new energy, new into Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine ideas and continued relevance and renewal". Learning (ML) for an inclusive, democratic "In"We should be optimistic about what's to telligent Cloud" architecture. come. The world is getting better, and progFor Nadella, the future belongs to AI-based ress is coming faster than ever. This book is a computing and Microsoft is building the world's thoughtful guide to an exciting, challenging fumost powerful AI supercomputer and making ture," Gates writes. the infrastructure available to everyone. Don't just buy the book to know who NaRecently, during his keynote address at della is. Instead, buy it to hit the refresh button the ongoing "Microsoft Ignite" event in Orlan- in your life from "a principled, deliberative leaddo, Florida, Nadella said Microsoft has been er searching for improvement -- for himself, for working to invent a universal, programmable a storied company, and for society".


NRI Pulse

..... Health Pulse .....

October 2017

How Much Exercise Does One Need? BY DR. PANCHAJANYA PAUL

Exercise has multiple health benefits. It decreases the risks of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, hypertension, stroke, cancer, depression and anxiety. There is a vast amount of data linking a physically active lifestyle to lower rates of morbidity and mortality. All body functions benefit from exercise. Exercise even stimulates the formation of new neurons in the brain by activating brain growth factors. From maximum benefit, exercise needs to be done on a regular basis. Choose the form of exercise you may enjoy like running, walking, swimming, dancing, soccer, tennis, etc. As long as you experience physical exertion, you will reap the benefit. Those with less time can try high intensity exercises like sprints. It is better to do exercise in a group as people can motivate and inspire from each other. The popularity of group fitness classes like CrossFit and Orange theory fitness is testimonial to this. According to the US department of health and human services - “Some physical activity is better than none. Inactive adults should gradually increase their level of activity. People gain health benefits from as little as 60 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week. For major health benefits, do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity each week. Another option is to do a combination of

both. A general rule is that 2 minutes of moderate-intensity activity counts the same as 1 minute of vigorous-intensity activity. For even more health benefits, do 300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 150 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity each week or a combination of both. The more active you are, the more you will benefit. When doing aerobic activity, do it for at least 10 minutes at a time. Spread the activity throughout the week. Muscle-strengthening activities that are moderate or vigorous intensity should be included 2 or more days a week. These activities should work all of the major muscle groups -legs, hips, back, chest, abdomen, shoulders, and arms. Examples include lifting weights, working with resistance bands, and doing sit-ups and pushups, yoga, and heavy gardening� Exercise is the best remedy for stress management. Exercise lowers the stress hormones also called the glucocorticoid levels in the blood. People who exercise regularly have a better conditioning and lower recovery time from physical exertion. Their baseline glucocorticoid levels stay low. Most of the harmful effects of chronic stress are medicated by the persistent elevated glucocorticoid hormones. Those who exercise regularly keep the level of their stress hormones low, and are able to bounce back faster. Now, exercise does not mean only going to the gym or going for a run. Any physical move-

Reusing Oil To Fry Food Increases Trans Fats, Causes Heart Diseases

Emphasizing that India's heart disease epidemic increased due to dietary patterns, doctors urged people to avoid reusing any oil for frying food products as it increases the proportion of trans fats, major source of heart diseases. According to the doctors, including from AIIMS, fats in food items are of four types - saturated, unsaturated, mono and trans, with the last most dangerous and their presence in any oil going up if it is cooked for a long duration or as soon as it emits smoket. Vanaspati has the highest content of trans fat content. "Our (Indian) people simply do not have any idea of what they are eating. Trans fats which is the most harmful and leading cause of heart diseases is entering into the body of humans in so many ways. One should choose cooking oils which are well balanced and has less than 4 gms of saturated fats," said Sundeep Mishra, Professor of Cardiology at AIIMS, on the occasion of World Heart Day. Mishra, who has several studies on the matter, says that boiling oil for hours and reuse of refined oil leads to the increase of trans fats. Suggested that though mustard oil and olive oil were among the "good" oils which should be

mostly used for cooking, the doctors even suggested mustard oil should be mixed with ghee to balance its fats, while olive oil should only be sprinkled on cooked food and not be used for frying as it leads to increase in trans fats. Nikhil Tandon, professor of Endocrinology at AIIMS stated that one person should have only 0.5 litre of fats every month. "Our food habits are such that heart disease becomes common. Even in market, biscuits and bhujias are cooked in vanaspati so that they can be preserved for long. This again leads to intake of trans fats, a leading killer," he said. Stating that other types of oil such as coconut by people in southern India used for cooking was making them acute heart patients, doctors also warned against using palm oil as it also has a high content of trans fat. WHO says Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are the major cause of mortality globally, as well as in India. They are caused by disorders of the heart and blood vessels, and includes coronary heart disease (heart attacks), cerebrovascular disease (stroke), raised blood pressure (hypertension), peripheral artery disease, rheumatic heart disease, congenital heart disease and heart failure.

ment, as long as it makes you move like a simple walk can be considered exercise. The challenge is to motivate ourselves to do more. Some people do better when they can count, and compare. For them, getting a wearable fitness tracker which measures the heart rate, steps, and miles walked may be helpful. There are many choices in all styles and prices from Jawbone, Fitbit, Garmin, Apple and Samsung watches. Then there are simple habits one can incorporate at their work and home which will make their lifestyle more active. One of them is using a standing desk. Since most of us spend an inordinate amount of time on the computers, standing while typing will keep us moving. Other measures include getting up every 20 minutes from your chair and moving, using a pedometer or a fitness tracker.

A mundane and boring activity like walking and moving can become fun and competitive once you compare with family and friends. There are other small lifestyle changes you can also make. Park your car a little further, so that you are forced to walk. Run as many errands as possible by walking. Walk and talk instead of texting or emailing when you can. Stand while you talk on the phone. Seek all opportunities to move. Recently, I got rid of the copier and printer from my office. It has freed up my office space and forces me to walk down the hallway to get papers. I stopped bringing bottled water and now use a recyclable mug. Every time I get thirsty, I walk to the common area to refill my water. In addition to moving, it allows you the chance to share ideas with colleagues and catch up with the latest gossip.

FDA Approves New Drug For Metastatic Breast Cancer

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a new drug to treat patients with advanced or metastatic breast cancer that has progressed after taking prior treatment. The drug -- Verzenio (abemaciclib) -- can be used for treatment of people with hormone receptor (HR)-positive, human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) -negative advanced or metastatic breast cancer that progressed after taking therapy that alters a patient's hormones (endocrine therapy), the regulators said in a statement. "Verzenio provides a new targeted treatment option for certain patients with breast cancer who are not responding to treatment, and unlike other drugs in the class, it can be given as a standalone treatment to patients who were previously treated with endocrine therapy and chemotherapy," said Richard Pazdur, Director at FDA. The FDA granted the approval of developing Verzenio to Eli Lilly and Company -- a USbased pharmaceuticals firm.

Verzenio works by blocking certain molecules (known as cyclin-dependent kinases 4 and 6), involved in promoting the growth of cancer cells, the statement said. The median progression-free survival for patients taking Verzenio in combination with fulvestrant was 16.4 months compared to 9.3 months for patients taking a placebo with fulvestrant. When taken as a standalone treatment, 19.7 per cent of patients experienced complete or partial shrinkage of their tumours for a median 8.6 months. However, use of Verzenio also revealed some common side effects including diarrhoea, low levels of certain white blood cells (neutropenia and leukopenia), nausea, abdominal pain, infections, fatigue, low levels of red blood cells (anaemia), decreased appetite, vomiting and headache, the statement said. Previously, FDA had approved palbociclib (in February 2015) and ribociclib (in March 2017) for certain patients with breast cancer.


NRI Pulse

EVENTS SAI Health Fair OCT 14 American Telugu Association is providing Free Health Fair in Atlanta area with the help of SAI Health Fair. When: Saturday, October 14 2017 Time: Blood Work - 8 AM to 12 PM Consultation - 9 AM to 1 PM Where: Hindu Temple of Atlanta, 5851 Georgia Hwy 85, Riverdale, GA 30274 Contact: Dr. Sujatha Reddy 478-320-5136 Diwali/Navratri Mela OCT 14 by Chinmaya Mission Alpharetta. Kid Friendly When: Saturday, October 14, 2017 at 6pm. Where: Lambert High School, 805 Nichols Rd, Suwanee, GA 30024. Contact: Himani 678-523-8459 Ambaji USA-Shree OCT 17-20 Shakti Mandir October events When: (10/17-20) Tuesday, October 17, 2018 = Dhanteras Times: 10:35am, 4:10pm, 8:33pm Wednesday, October 18, 2018 = Kali Chaudas Times: 6pm Thursday, October 19, 2018 = Diwali Times: 7:50am, 11:59am, 5:31pm Friday, October 20, 2018 = New Year Celebration Times: 7am - 9pm ; cultural program 7:30pm Where: Ambaji/Shree Shakti Mandir, 1450 Huie Rd., Lake City, GA 30260. Contact: 770-968-3490,

..... Features .....

BAPS Diwali – the OCT 19-21 Festival of Lights When: Thursday, October 19, 2017 Diwali Chopda Pujan – 5:00 pm Diwali Maha Arti & Fireworks – 7:30 pm When: Friday, October 20, 2017 New Year Arti – 7:00 am Grand Annakut Darshan – 12:00 pm to 8:00 pm Sneh Milan Date: Sat Oct 21, 2017 Time 4pm Convenient Off-site Parking with Free Shuttle Service to and from Mandir: Off site parking location: 6100 Lawrenceville Highway, Tucker GA 30084 In order to avoid traffic jams near Mandir area, please avoid driving onto Rockbridge Rd Where: BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, 460 Rockbridge Road NW, Lilburn GA 30047. Contact:678-906-2277, info.atlanta@usa.baps. org ,

To list your upcoming event, please email us at contact@nripulse. com with ‘Event Listing’ in the subjectline.

Dream, Believe, Achieve & Sparkle: IACA Pageant Crowns New Winners For 2017 ….continued from Pg 6 ter than your husband? In your relationship, who is more the giver and who is the taker? Should the wife change her last name or keep her maiden name? Do you think social media has helped or hurt our society? Besides climate change, what is the biggest threat to planet earth today. The pageant’s proceedings were held together with some great emceeing and singing by Atlanta Idol winner Neil Banerjee who was aided by the beautiful Sonali Patel who was first-runner up in the Miss India Georgia category last year. Another highlight of the evening was some

peppy singing by Atlanta entertainer Shantanu Kar and an energetic dance performance by Prem Rahman’s troupe. The 11-member panel of judges included Dr Suvrat Bhargave, Dr Sandra J. Jordan, Sadaf Farooqui, Sudakshina Mukherjee, Joyita Hegde, Prabha Raghava, Atin Majumdar, Dr Sudeshna Nandi, Shaveta Jain, Surinder Bedi and Rahim Paracha. The winners were crowned by last year’s title holders. IACA chairperson Dr Paddy Sharma thanked the participants, program directors, emcees, judges, parents and the sponsors.

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October 2017

Keeping Track Of Your Kids

BY NURY VITTACHI Modern life is weird. Thanks to supermarket delivery tracking apps, we know the precise location of our next roll of toilet paper, but we haven't the faintest idea where our children are. I ask mine, of course, but my teenage daughter divides the world into only two locations: "Home" and "Out". Plan: All dads should sell their children to their wives through Amazon's reseller program, so they get tracking chips attached to them: "Hold still, darling, while this nice uncle inserts something under your skin." Of course the danger is that someone else buys your children before your wife can click the "add to cart" button, but, hey, what's life without risk? Any buyer who ends up with my brood will eventually discover they've made a horrendous mistake and can send them back to me (preferably after they've all graduated from university). Yet surely it is odd that in today's world, under-skin chips are routinely implanted into dogs for their safety, but not into children. Which are more important contributors to family life? (Don't answer that.) Ideally, children should have microchips with little built-in speakers so that they hear Things Dads Say at regular intervals: 1) "Do you think I'm made of money?" 2) "You're not going out in that," and 3) "Ask your mother." Listening to me rant, a China correspondent told me about a problem in Shanghai which could have been prevented by microchipping children.

A father in Shanghai complained about his handsome, clever son: "How can someone as ugly as me have a kid like that?" he said. Good point. Still, his wife insisted she had never been unfaithful. He divorced her anyway. The woman, named in reports only as Mrs Zhang, admitted that something was wrong, as the boy was adorable, while her ex-husband looked like the back of a hippo. DNA eventually showed that the boy was not related to either parent and a mix-up had been made at the Shanghai hospital. But the switched-at-birth story that scores highest on the facepalm index is that of Mary Miller from This American Life, a podcast. In 1951, Mrs Miller realized that nurses had given her the wrong baby because it was much lighter than it had been at birth. Instead of pointing this out, she consulted her husband Norbert. I know! For a woman to ask her husband anything about babies is certifiably insane. Norbert, being an insensitive idiot ("a male"), couldn't see any problem. She went into hospital pregnant, she came out with a baby. A baby's a baby, right? Just keep it. What's the difference? She listened to him. But she owned up 43 years later, leaving two families furious with her. Microchipping kids could prevent such problems, but this is the weird thing. It seems that modern society only tracks what it considers important. I'm not sure where the kids are. But my toilet paper is two streets away and should arrive in four minutes.

Trends For Women This Festive Season

With the festive season around the corner, it's that time of the year when women love to flaunt their most innovative traditional ensembles and jewelry that reflects their innate ethnicity. Experts suggest that minimalism is the way to go and vibrant colours with some experimentation with accessories ensures that your style game is on point. * Minimalist lightweight garments are trending this festive season ensuring less is more. Minimalism is the key trend as it allows room for innovations in terms of experimentation with statement jewellery that enhances the overall look of an ensemble as opposed to heavy embroidered garments that are not so easy to carry for all festivities.

tile enough to allow experimentation whilst compatible with the type of occasion. * This season, elaborate styles like ruffles, flares, pee-a-book, florals, statement sleeves, slogan tees, off-shoulder and print-on-print fashion are a rage. The trending color palette includes vibrant shades of green, yellow and pink. * The quintessential Chandbali of Indian heritage is one of the biggest jewelry trends for this season. They are eternally stylish and versatile and can be paired with any Indian look.

* Having colored stone jewelry in your collection is always helpful, as it can quickly add colour to a simple monochrome look or match with any hue to your * These days womoutfits. Opting for a en look for simple simple choker necklace as well as tradiset in emeralds or ruby tional designs that coloured stones can be weigh less and something that can be worn on easily matched with different Indian attire. various occasions. With changing times, women are moving beyond conventional jewelry and * A floral flared top paired with a floral maxi adopting more contemporary styles. Lightweight skirt works well across brunch and dinner looks. jewellery embellished with semi-precious stones One can pair a maxi dress with a statement piece looks youthful and elegant. Diamond jewelry of jewelry that stands out to spice up the look embedded with colorful gemstones, enameled and make a chic fashion statement. Versatile garpieces, jewelry pieces with minakari work have ments like a simple kurta paired with a palazzo caught attention this festive season. or flared skirt can be styled differently by accessorizing creatively with oxidized jewelry or lay* It is important to select a garment that is versa- ered neck pieces and bracelets.


NRI Pulse

October 2017


..... Bollywood Pulse .....

NRI Pulse

Priyanka Gets On Forbes' Highest Paid TV Actresses’ List

Actress Priyanka Chopra has been ranked eighth on Forbes magazines list of World's Highest-Paid TV Actresses 2017, which is led by "Modern Family" star Sofia Vergara. With success of her popular American thriller series "Quantico", Priyanka -- the only Indian celebrity in the list -- managed to rake in $10 million between June 1, 2016, and June 1, 2017, reports Vergara retained the top spot in the list for sixth year in a row. Best known for her role as Gloria Delgado-Pritchett on "Modern Family", Sofia collected $41.5 million before taxes and fees. She was followed by Kaley Cuoco, who earned $26 million during the same period thanks to hit comedy show "The Big Bang Theory". Mindy Kaling and Ellen Pompeo tied at the third spot as they both earned $13 million apiece. Mariska Hargitay of "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" fame rounded off the top five with earnings of $12.5 million. She was followed by Julie Bowen ($12 million) and Kerry Washington ($11 million) at the sixth and seventh positions, respectively. Priyanka, who made her Hollywood debut with "Baywatch" earlier this year, left behind Robin Wright ($9 million) and Pauley Perrette ($8.5 million), who came ninth and 10th, respectively, on the list.

‘Newton’ India’s Official Entry For Oscars

Mumbai: (IANS) “Newton”, a Hindi film set against the backdrop of elections in the world’s largest democracy, was on Friday announced as India’s official entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscars 2018. The film’s team says it’s an encouragement for filmmakers who are willing to take risks. “Newton”, directed by Amit V. Masurkar and starring the stellar Rajkummar Rao, was chosen from among 26 titles from different languages by a 14-member jury appointed by the Film Federation of India (FFI). “It was a unanimous decision. Titles like ‘Dangal’ and ‘Mukti Bhavan’ were part of the list,” Supran Sen, secretary general of FFI, told IANS. “Newton”, which released recently, revolves around a young government clerk who is sent on election duty to a Maoist-controlled town and how the ideological struggle puts him in an awkward situation. It was shot in the interiors of Chhattisgarh. So far, “Mother India”, “Salaam Bombay!” and “Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India” are the only Indian films that made it to the top five in the Best Foreign Language Film category at the Academy Awards, but none have won the honor. How is team “Newton” planning its Oscar journey considering Indian films never make it beyond the entry gate? “For now, the fact that ‘Newton’ has been selected as India’s official entry is in itself a big deal for me. I’m still trying to process that information. It’s still to sink in. Whether we make it to the shortlist or win or not are thoughts that are far away from my head right now,” Masurkar said. He hopes the movie “will bring attention to the need to strengthen democracy in our country”.



October 2017

The excitement and contentment in National Award winning actor Rajkummar’s voice was palpable as he shared his excitement. “It feels amazing and brilliant that a film like ‘Newton’, which is unique and special for all of us, and which we have made with so much honesty and purity, without keeping any of those commercial thing in mind about what works and what sells, gets this. We just had to tell a simple, honest story and I am glad that it’s resonating with everyone. “The kind of response that we are getting from the critics, and now the fact that it makes it as India’s official entry to the Oscars, it’s huge.” The film fraternity, including names like Paresh Rawal, Anil Kapoor, Karan Johar, Manoj Bajpayee, Bhumi Pednekar, Ayushmann Khurrana and Dia Mirza, also praised the FFI’s decision Acclaimed actor Pankaj Tripathi, who features in “Newton”, believes this choice would encourage the entire film fraternity to support good content cinema and filmmakers. “It’s something to be proud of as we have a thousand number of films coming out each year and out of that number, our film gets an entry. The entry is making us feel proud, so the win (if it happens) will have an amazing impact on the entire film fraternity. “‘Newton’ is a film which will reflect real India and it is not at all a biased project,” he said. Filmmaker Hansal Mehta, who has worked closely with Rajkummar in films like “Shahid” and “Aligarh”, also hailed “Newton” as the best choice. “The film is produced by Manish Mundra of Drishyam Films, the company best known for backing critically-acclaimed projects such as “Masaan” and “Umrika”.

Kangana, Aditya Pancholi Embroiled In Legal Battle

Actors Kangana Ranaut and Aditya Pancholi are now embroiled in a legal battle. Kangana's lawyer, Rizwan Siddiquee, replied to the legal defamation notice sent by Aditya which was in response to the public thrashing by Kangana on a TV channel. The "Simran" actress had unveiled her relationship with the actor and mentioning about the physical and mental trauma she went through. Siddiquee said in a statement: "The defamation notice received by the Advocate representing Aditya Pancholi and Zarina Wahab have been duly replied to. My client who has been a victim of crime has largely spoken about her personal experiences, which were already reported on various media platforms since the year 2007. Besides the laws of the land do not give any added advantage to any male person to silence any (victim) woman under the threat of filing defamation proceedings against her," he added.

Tom Alter: An Impressive Career Record

He was the most different American India has seen. Born in independent India to a family with roots in the subcontinent from roughly around when the Mahatma returned from overseas, Tom Alter was drawn to Bollywood after seeing Rajesh Khanna in "Aradhana" and moved from play 'firangs' onscreen and on stage to also portray a wide gamut of Indian historical and cultural icons. He was also an avid cricket fan who did the first ever TV interview of Sachin Tendulkar, played regularly (in a team called 'MCC' -- Match Cut Club -- along with Naseeruddin Shah, Vishal Bhardwaj, and Aamir Khan), wrote much on the game, coached students in his short teaching career, and also has the distinction of giving commentary in a Oneday match India played. But it was in the entertainment world that Thomas Beach 'Tom' Alter (19502017) distinguished himself. In a four-decade career which only ended earlier this year after he was a diagnosed with cancer (that ultimately ended his life on Friday, Sep 30), he was not only seen on the big and small screen but also on the stage -- and not only in Bollywood but also in Assamese, Gujarati, Kannada, Kumaoni, Marathi and Malyalam cinema. The blue-eyed, 'Gora sahab', with his command of both Hindi and Urdu, is Tom with wife assured of a firm place in Indian cultural expanse, being the only actor who has appeared as two key figures spanning a momentous near-century of the country's history -- portraying both Bahadur Shah Zafar and Lord Mountbatten. With his perfect diction in Hindi and Urdu, Alter was an obvious fixture as a British officer in any Bollywood film or TV serial depicting the Raj. Though he made his debut with Ramanand Sagar's "Charas" (1976), where he is Dharmendra's customs department boss, he came to greater prominence with Satyajit Ray's "Shatranj Ke Khiladi" (1977).

He is also the tactful translator when Outram interacts with the Nawab's Prime Minister, Ali Naqi Khan Madar-ud-Daula (Victor Bannerjee) and then the Queen Mother (yesteryear's actress Veena), where he tempers his superior's intemperate words into chaste, diplomatic Urdu: eg "Aisa karna danishmandi nahi hogi". But Alter was not content with this niche only. While this accounts for some of his memorable roles -- spanning characters both sympathetic and understanding (as Weston) to those stereotypically tyrannical and racist (in "Kranti"), he also went on to appear as the heroine's elder brother in Raj Kapoor's "Ram Teri Ganga Maili" (1986), a Pathan underworld don in Vidhu Vinod Chopra's cult "Parinda" (1989) -- the only major character apart from Jackie Shroff to survive, the obnoxiously strict Anglo-Indian incharge of a girl's hostel in "Aashiqui" (1990) and so on. For good measure, he also portrayed Maulana Abul Kalam Azad in Prakash Jha's "Loknayak" (2004), based on the life of Jayaprakash Narayan -- and would go to reprise the role in a stage play. And then he went on to play Saul, the biblical King of Israel, in "One Night With the King" (2006) opposite Peter O'Toole as the Prophet Samuel, though their scenes Carol. form only the prologue of the Luke Goss starrer. And while his stage life, initiated with Film and Television Institute of India contemporaries Naseeruddin Shah and Benjamin Gilani, started with plays like "Waiting for Godot", Alter soon diversified here too, staging an adaptation of Malayalam writer Vaikom Mohammad Bashir to portraying icons of Urdu literature like Mirza Ghalib and Sahir Ludhianvi in original works. An impressive career record, it is however testimony to India's inclusive acceptance as much as to his undeniable talent.


NRI Pulse

October 2017


NRI Pulse

Lavanga Triangles


October 2017

..... What’s Cooking? .....

3 Cups all purpose flour 3 Tablespoons hot Crisco or oil 1Cup warm

water 1 Pinch of salt 1⁄2 Cup all purpose flour for dusting Cloves (lavangas) 2 Cups of oil Sugar syrup 1 1⁄2 Cup sugar 1 Cup water 1⁄2 Teaspoon crushed cardamom seeds (elaichi) Slivered almonds and pistachios (optional)

In a medium mixing bowl, mix dough ingredients together and knead for two minutes. Keep it covered for a couple of hours. In a three- quart saucepan, mix sugar and water. Boil for three minutes. Reduce heat; simmer for four minutes and remove from heat. Mix cardamom powder. Keep it aside. Make one-inch diameter balls and dust them with flour. Roll each ball with a rolling pin to four-inch diameter circles. Fold

circles into half circle and fold it again to make a triangle. Stick a clove in the middle, so that the shape will remain in tact when fried. Repeat with remaining dough. In a small frying pan, heat oil and fry three or four triangles at a time over low heat until light brown. Transfer these to sugar syrup and remove immediately with a separate slotted spoon to a tray. Sprinkle almonds and pistachios if using.

Kajji Kayalu

Dough 3 Cups all purpose flour (maida) 2 Tablespoon oil ¼ Teaspoon salt 1 Cup water

Mix flour, oil, and salt. Add water and mix thoroughly by hand or in a food processor to make Variation: Make circles same as above. Make stiff dough. Keep it covered in a bowl. four or five slits in the middle and pinch the ends together. These look very nice like jack fruit seg- Stuffing 1 Cup roasted chana dal (chaments. na dahlia) 1/2 Cup almonds ½ Cup walnuts (optional) 1/ Cup cashew nuts ½ Cup pistachios (optional) 1/4 Cup sesame seeds (optional) ½ Cup fresh or frozen shredded coconut 1 1/2 cups brown sugar or jaggery 2 Teaspoon crushed cardamom seeds (elaichi) 2 Cups oil Roast almonds, walnuts and cashews on a cookie sheet at 250 degrees in the oven for ten minutes. Mix them twice in between. If you have

a toaster oven you can use that too. Roast sesame seeds on top of the stove in a dry pan until light brown at medium low heat. Let them cool. Put coconut on paper towel and microwave for one minute to remove moisture. Blend chana dal, almonds, walnuts, cashews, pistachios, and sesame seeds in a food processor until coarse. Add coconut, brown sugar and cardamom powder and process for half a minute. Now the stuffing is ready. Make dough into 45 balls. Coat them with flour. Roll each ball into five-inch diameter poori. Fill one half of the poori with stuffing. Smear some water around inner edges of the poori. Fold other end of the poori over the edges and press with the tines of the fork to seal. Repeat with rest of the dough balls and powder. You can use a kajjikayi maker if you have one. Heat oil in a frying pan over medium low heat. Drop Kajjikayalu slowly into the oil. Fry both sides until light brown and crunchy. Remove them from oil onto layered paper towels with a slotted spoon. Store them in a container with tight lid after kajjikayalu has cooled completely. Kajjikayalu taste fresh for a long time if they are stored in a proper container.

..... InVogue .....

Trending This Season: Banarasi Lehengas A lehenga is a form of a long skirt which is the lehenga/skirt it still brings a touch of rich elpleated. It is usually embroidered or has a thick egance, which goes well with evening functions. border at the bottom. Style up with long sleeved cholis and drape Banarasi handlooms lehengas are making the odhni around the neck in quirky patterns. waves across India. Brides want the best of regal chic at their wedding. Hence Banarasi lehengas From our exclusive collection of Banarasi remain the first choice for them for the wedding craftsmanship, comes a handloom Banarasi katan day. The rich textures of fabric, embroidery with silk lehenga set which you would love to have in intricate details designs and embossed motifs your wardrobe. Get simplicity and elegance in bring an exquisite touch to the wedding day. this handloom lehenga that is classic and stands Since time immemorial, Banarasi brocade has the test of time. The lehenga comes with a blouse been a symbol of status in India. and dupatta borders.

BY RANI SHARMA Raneez Boutique

gether to create a sturdier and more durable fabric. Due to the nature of its creation, it also makes an interesting textured background for any work that is to be done on the fabric to make it unique. It is known for its versatility, softness and comfort, although it can be weakened by sunlight and perspiration. Jewelry: Pair with gold, kundan and polka sets Purse: Silk fabric potli style Hair: A jhooda always looks good

Normally, Banarasi handloom fabric is not Katan silk is one of the finest varieties of Makeup: Medium makeup with dark lipstick very heavy. But, with minimal embroidery on silk. It is created by twisting two filaments to-


NRI Pulse

October 2017


NRI Pulse

October 2017

NRI Pulse OCtober 2017 Print Issue