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flights of their shuttlecocks were unaffected by the elements of Chicago’s notorious winter outside. Playing along parallel courts, they seemed engrossed in their games to the exclusion of the players next to them. Since the whole complex is climatecontrolled, players enjoy a particular comfort level inside. They can be down to their professional athletic wear and sharpen their skills irrespective of what the weather is outside. Play N Thrive has been Bharathur’s passion for a long time and it has taken him some formidable challenges to get here. With a background in management, Bharathur was doing rather well. He had a successful careera seasoned marketing and product management professional with experience leading initiatives in FinTech, IT and Telecom products. Bharathur graduated with an MBA from Kellogg School of Management in 2015, majoring in Entrepreneurship, Venture

Raghu Bharathur

Capital and Marketing. He decided to start his own startup after graduating from Kellogg. He quit his lucrative day job as VP of Customer Acquisitions at Citi Retail Services to start his first company, Play N Thrive. He deployed his professional skills to establish market trends for a facility like Play N Thrive and determined that an integrated sport facility this diverse had definite future. After he took the plunge in early 2017, however, Bharathur discovered how hard it is to start from scratch, particularly when it was essentially a one-man show. “From finding the right building to finding the right contractor, from getting city approvals to finance and then finding the right sourcing for all the equipment and turf and courts everything has been a steep learning curve for me,” Bharathur told Hi India.

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FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2018

HOLI specIaL

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RIOT OF COLORS SPRUCES NIK PATEL GETS TELUGU 25 YEARS FOR & TAMIL FESTIVE SPIRIT, WELCOMES SP $179-M LOAN CONCERT BY

ts 25 years for $179-m loan fraud

do area k’ Patel 6 to 25 million 010 to

Play N Thrive offers four types of memberships. There is a two-year family membership for a family of four for $1499, one-year family membership for $999, twoyear individual membership for $999 and one-year individual membership for $599. It also has the option of a monthly individual membership $59. For an extra $20 a second monthly member can be added and for another $20 two children. Although only a few weeks into its operations and only partially so, Play N Thrive already has the easy amiability of an already established place. With the introduction of the table tennis area, activities have already picked up even more. A local Maharashtra Mandal was scheduled to organize a tournament over the weekend. “I envision a time soon when the moment you enter, you leave your worldly stress at the door,” Bharathur says.

Man held for dragging cop in his vehicle

Narendra Modi, the first ever Indian PM to visit Palestine, assured President Mahmoud Abbas that it will soon become a free country in a peaceful manner

.COM

Paris McKinley

Amid shoutsFof swarmed into public spaces splas RC A‘Holi U D Hai’, people AND the TEAM powders and water onILAIYARAJA each other to celebrate seasonal f Nikesh ‘Nik’ Patel

BY A STAFF WRITER HICAGO, IL -- A man has been charged with battery for dragging a police officer in his vehicle when he drove away from a traffic stop on March 6 in the West Englewood neighborhood on the South Side. Paris McKinley, 26, was arrested about 1 am in the 6200 block of South Claremont after officers noticed a firearm in his vehicle and he tried to flee. McKinley sped off from the traffic stop but dragged a Chicago Police officer several blocks before he crashed into a building and fled on foot, the police said. Officers took him into custody and recovered a firearm from his vehicle. McKinley, a resident of southwest suburban Summit, was on parole at the time of arrest, and had three prior convictions.

MIDWEST EDITION | EAST COAST EDITION | Volume 8 • Issue No. 453, MARCH 9, 2018 | THE COMMUNITY FIRST

cash on real estate investments and a lavish lifestyle for himself and his family. The government’s filings in the case also describe Patel’s lavish shopping (recurring charges at Neiman Marcus, Louis Vuitton, Armani, Hugo Boss and Ferragamo); visits to brothels in Panama; expensive stays at hotels, such as the Gaylord Palms in Kissimmee, the Four Seasons on the island of Nevis and the

Trump Ocean Club in Panama; a $19,000 bill for a charter flight to Chicago for a court hearing in his criminal case; and a $30,000 tab for his daughter’s birthday party in 2017 at the Four Seasons hotel in Orlando. Patel had bought five hotels with the fraud proceeds through another Orlando company, Alena Hospitality.

IANS, NEW DELHI

SHAMI’S illions of young and old across the counWIFE try this week celeALLEGES brated Holi, smearing vibrant colors on each other sports DOMESTIC and exchanging sweets to spread joy and VIOLENCE welcome the beginning of Shami’s wife alleges spring in India.

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domestic violence

www.hiindia.com

RIOT OF COLORS SPRUCES UP FESTIVE SPIRIT, WELCOMES SPRING

Amid shouts of Holi Hai and roadside dances to the beat of The Indian pacer, however, denied the allegations of the drums, people — rich and poor, abuse, saying it is an attempt to derail his cricket career Hindus and Muslims and from Seamer left out of BCCI contracts other religions — swarmed into public spaces to splash powders of The Indian myriad colors on each other and pacer, however, celebrate the seasonal festival of coldenied the ors, marking the end of winter. allegations The celebrations began amid Amitabh Bachchan: of the abuse, bright sunshine in many parts of Happy Holi... The saying it is the country. People came out of an attempt to colors of life be their houses to smear other derail his each cricket within you ever. with colored powder, colored India aim to bounce Indian hockey team career back from SL loss water and mud as well. Families outplayslikeMalaysia prepared traditional delicacies gujia, a sweet fried dumpling The festival, which, like many Indian festivals, is embedded in a Hindu mythology — that of the triumph of good made with semolina. We Help Hundreds of Clients Achieve over evil — brings together people of all classes andWellness religions who sing and dance, distribute sweets. (Photo: IANS) The festival, which, like many %2,500 Positive * 2536 W Petersonin a more95 Even politiciansSurvey and celebrities than traffic Rated policemenin Independent Amarinder Singh greeted the people is embedded Indian festivals Consult with award winning Scientist , Ayurveda specialist , Dr Raj Av, Chicago also did not remain far off from were on duty to keep a close watch with a call Hindu mythology — that of the We bring you world famous “Panchakarma” Ayurveda therapies . Rejuvenate, heal your body , De-steress , for celebrating the festival balance immunity , get great skin & hair. Benefit from “therapies to alleviate : ARTHRITIS, FIBROMYALGIA, SPORTS on those flouting road safety the revelry of the day. President with the colors of unity, tolerance, triumph of good over evil — INJURY, BACK ACHE ,DISC PROLAPSE, SPONDYLOSIS, ECZEMA ,PSORIASIS, DIABETES, BP,CHOLESTEROL,OBESITY, PCOS,MIGRAINE, ANXIETY, DEPRESSION, ALLERGIES, ASTHMA ,THYROID, INFERTILITY,IMPOTENCY, Ram Nath Kovind and Prime brotherhood and compassion. In his norms creating brings together people of all classes Teen shooterPARALYSIS,DEMENTIA Manu capsand superb rise withproblems, World Cup gold 7739426161 , MND, PARKINSONS, CANCER, Gall STONES & MORE Minister Narendra Modi’s tweets message, he exhorted the people to and religions who sing and dance, particularly for women. As the festival is associated with greeted the countrymen. celebrate the festival of love in a distribute sweets. Kovind prayed for peace, joy spirit of harmony, coupled with In Delhi, people were seen revelry and boisterous fun, many dancing to the beats of drums and were seen consuming bhang (an and prosperity in everyone’s lives, collective prayers for prosperity. In West Bengal, Holi was celesmearing each others’ faces with edible preparation of cannabis) to remarking that “Holi is a celebraabir and gulal, as colors tradition- add zest to their celebrations. tion of harmony in our society. brated with mirth and gaiety as ally used in Holi are known. Delhi Youngsters rode motorbikes, The Prime Minister also wished people participated in great numbers and swayed to popular beats. Police said it had made proper throwing colors in the air and everyone “Happy Holi”. Union Home Minister Rajnath While the Bengali community arrangements in case of any hooli- shouting Holi hai!’. Similar celebrations were report- Singh celebrated Holi with NSG dominated the Dol (spring festival ganism during the celebrations, requesting the people to obey ed from other urban and rural commandos at his residence in similar to Holi), it was the turn of rules for safe celebration and stay pockets of the country. Children New Delhi. the non-Bengali communities away from drunken driving. Marwaris, In Srinagar, Border Security (predominantly did what they do best — playing waterImmigration Authorities said no untoward pranks Biharis) to splash Force troopers celebrated the day Gujratis by spraying&colored  Experienced Affordable Law Firm  Free Consultations 7 daysand a week. or water guns and incident was reported from any- with pichkaris color on one another to soak in with faces smeared with color,  Offices in Chicago nearby Devon Ave, Schaumburg, IL, and Lake Forest, IL hurling water-filled balloons Immigration at dance during where in the national capital  the Holi spiritPetitions, too. a camp on Humhama Specializing in Family-Based Petitions, Employment Based-Immigration Applications, Requests Evidence, Citizenship, Appeals, muchChief more..Minister passers-by from rooftops andforbalwhere barricades had been set upAsylum West and Bengal on theNaturalization outskirts of the&city. at many places to check trouble as conies of their houses. In Punjab, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee took to Twitter to Contact: 773-431-0452 • Email: vishal@chhabrialawllc.com • Web: www.chhabrialawllc.com IANS, KOLKATA

I

Hasin Jahan uploaded photos and phone numbers of the several women. She also alleged that Shami, 27, and his family members had even tried to kill her. (File Photo:IANS)

COLOMBO: A new-look Indian team will aim to recover from the five-wicket loss against Sri Lanka in the opening match when they face Bangladesh in the second match of the Nidahas Trophy Twenty20 International (T20I) cricket tri-series here. Kusal Perera’s brilliant 66 off 37 balls and some crucial contributions from the middle-order helped Sri Lanka beat India in the first game. After the Indian batsmen put up a decent target of 175, their bowlers failed to make a mark as the hosts hammered them all around the park. Spinners Yuzvendra Chahal (2/37) and Washington Sundar (2/28) provided the crucial breakthroughs to control the run-flow. Towards the end, Dasun Shanaka (15 not out) and Thisara Perera (22 not out) played sensibly and helped their team clinch the issue. After the loss, skipper Rohit Sharma said that the track was good and batsmen could have score more towards the end. So in the upcoming match, middle and lower-order batsmen will aim to contribute and try to give the perfect finish. On the other hand, Bangladesh will take on the field without their regular skipper and all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan. In his absence, Mahmudullah will take charge. —IANS

IANS, IPOH (MALAYSIA)

A

brilliant performance helped India outplay Malaysia 5-1 this week to keep the chances alive to play in the final of the 27th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup. India rode on splendid goals by Shilanand Lakra (10th minute), Gurjant Singh (42nd, 57th), Sumit Kumar (48th) and Ramandeep Singh (51st) to beat hosts Malaysia and kept their chances to

ndia pacer Mohammed Shami found himself in the centre of a controversy this week following accusations of domestic violence and extra-marital affairs by his wife Hasain Jahan. Jahan posted screenshots of Shami’s alleged WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger conversations with multiple women on her Facebook account. She also uploaded photos and phone numbers of the women. Hasin Jahan alleged that Shami, 27, and members of his family had even tried to kill her. “Everyone in their family used to torture me. His mother and brother used to abuse me. The tortures continued till 2-3 a.m. in the morning. They even wanted to kill me,” she alleged.

“He even abused me and started beating me. All this continued after he returned from South Africa. He has been doing this for quite some time now and now I have had enough,” she said.

play in the final after a series of underwhelming performances. In the first game, India lost to Argentina 2-3 followed by a draw against England. In the third match, India lost to Australia 2-4. Coming into the match after a stunning 2-1 win against Olympic Champions Argentina, Malaysia were quick to get off the blocks, attacking India’s circle with their front runner Faizal Saari attempting the team’s first shot on goal. He beat three Indian defenders

into the circle but couldn’t make a potential connection to score. But it was India who drew the first blood with an opening goal The action boiled down to the

MUMBAI: Seamer Mohammed Shami found himself out of the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) 26-member annual contracts system, which saw the addition of a new category. Shami’s removal may be a coincidence with the ongoing controversy involving his wife, who accused the Bengal pacer, of domestic violence and extra-marital affairs. —IANS

“I gave him enough time (to rectify himself ) and tried to calm myself down but instead of accepting his own mistakes, he used to vent his anger on me and even threaten me, asking to keep mum for my own goodwill,” she added. Shami, however, denied the allegations, saying it was an attempt to derail his cricket career. He hails from Uttar Pradesh and represents Bengal in domestic tournaments. “Hi I’m Mohammad Shami. Ye jitna bhi news hamara personal life ke bare may chal raha hai, ye sab sarasar jhut hai, ye koi bahut bada humare khilap sajish hai or ye mujhe badnam karne or mera game kharab karne ka kosis ki ja rahi hai (I deny all that is going on regarding my personal life. This is a conspiracy against me and it is being done to hamper my game),” Shami tweeted.

India lost to Argentina 2-3 followed by a draw against England. (File Photo: IANS)

final quarter when India changed gears and attacked the hosts who looked like they were losing steam. India will take on Ireland in their last round-robin match.

( * Groupn survey )

IANS, NEW DELHI

H

aving created a splash with two gold medals at the Shooting World Cup, Haryana teenager Manu Bhaker is the latest sensation to join the long list of star shooters from India. Manu not only won the women’s 10m Air Pistol gold medal but also partnered Om Prakash Mitharval for the 10m Air Pistol mixed team title in Guadalajara, Mexico this week. In the individual event, the Indian debutant shot a total of 237.5 to prevail over home favorite Alejandra Zavala Vazquez, who finished second with a total of 237.1.

In the individual event, the Indian debutant shot 237.5 score. (Photo: IANS)

Frenchwoman Celine Goberville finished third with a score of 217.0. For someone who took to shoot-

ing just a little over two years ago, Manu’s rise to stardom has been nothing short of meteoric.

She made heads turn during her maiden venture into the senior level last year by breaking two long-standing national records in a span of less than a month. But when asked about her feats the 16-year-old laughed them off as happenstance. “It (breaking records) just happens. I don’t think about them. At times I don’t even know what the records are. People tell me afterwards that I have broken a record. I would like to thank all my coaches for their advice and the hours they have put in to hone my technique,” she said after claiming gold in the girls’ 10m Air Pistol at the Khelo India School Games last month.

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US NEWS

Trump’s economic adviser resigns Cohn, who was rumored to be next Chief of Staff, announced his decision to quit the post just a few days after the departure of the President’s adviser director Hope Hicks

Trump administration open to tariff exemptions: Ross

IANS, WASHINGTON

U

S President Donald Trump’s top economic adviser Gary Cohn, former president of Goldman Sachs bank, has resigned amid a major internal clash over President Donald Trumps decision to impose tariffs on aluminium and steel imports. It is the latest in a series of highprofile departures from Trump’s team. Cohn, who had been rumored just weeks ago as a potential next Chief of Staff, will leave the White House in the coming weeks, CNN reported. In a statement released by the White House this week, Cohn said it had been “an honor to serve my country”. The 57-year-old had helped Trump push through his sweeping tax reforms late last year. “Gary has been my chief economic adviser and did a superb job in driving our agenda, helping to deliver historic tax cuts and reforms and unleashing the American economy once again. He is a rare talent, and I thank him for his dedicated service to the American people,” Trump said in a statement. “Will be making a decision soon on the appointment of new Chief Economic Advisor. Many people wanting the job — will choose wisely!” Trump tweeted. Cohn’s announcement came just a few days after the departure of the President’s adviser and communications director Hope Hicks. The development sounded

California state sued over immigration laws WASHINGTON: The US government has filed a lawsuit against the state of California over immigration laws that it alleged were “unconstitutional” and against the policies of President Donald Trump. The department filed a federal lawsuit against the state and its top officials to stop a cluster of socalled “sanctuary state” bills — a move that puts the administration on offense but is nonetheless likely to generate heated litigation over the boundaries of immigration authority, CNN reported. The lawsuit was the latest broadside against so-called “sanctuary cities” — referring to localities that abide by some measure of non-cooperation with federal law enforcement — and amid an heightened tension with California.

US President Donald Trump(L) delivers his State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. (Xinhua/Yin Bogu/IANS)

WASHINGTON: US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross opened the door this week to possible exemptions for other countries on the steel and aluminum tariffs announced by President Donald Trump, who had previously said Mexico and Canada could be exempt if a “new” North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta) was signed. “The President indicated the other day that he has a willingness to give an exemption to Canada and to

Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs to cost US jobs WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump’s new tariffs on imported steel and aluminum would cost the US nearly 146,000 jobs, according to a latest research by the Trade Partnership, a Washington-based consulting firm. Trump announced March 1 that the United States planned to impose 25 percent of tariff on steel imports and 10 percent for aluminum, as

alarm bells in establishment circles in Washington and on Wall Street, where many viewed Cohn as a steadying influence on economic policy inside the White House. His departure, combined with

these imports threaten the US national security, Xinhua reported. “The tariffs would increase US iron and steel employment and nonferrous metals (primarily aluminum) employment by 33,464 jobs, but cost 179,334 jobs throughout the rest of the economy, for a net loss of nearly 146,000 jobs,” said the research. “More than five jobs would be lost for every one gained,” said Joseph

Trump’s recent moves to recommit himself to his nationalist trade agenda, raised questions about the direction of the Trump administration and sent Dow futures plummeting 300 points.

Francois and Laura Baughman who co-authored the research. Services sectors will be hit the hardest, the research found. Consumers are likely to reduce spending when they are hit by higher costs and lost wages from unemployment. Negative impacts “would ripple through the economy,” warned the research. —IANS

“Wall Street won’t be happy,” said a senior Republican who worked both at the White House and in finance. Trump was likely to consider Larry Kudlow, a long time infor-

Mexico, provided that we work things out in NAFTA ... so he has already indicated a degree of flexibility,” Ross said during an interview on the Wilbur Ross CNBC business news network. Last week, Trump said he was planning to impose high tariffs on steel and aluminum to protect US producers.

mal adviser of his, CNN quoted sources as saying. Cohn plans to stay in his job for several weeks and continue to push back on Trump’s planned tariffs on steel and aluminium imports, which have threatened to touch off a global trade war, said a person who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss Cohn’s plans. Trump’s announcement last week that he would levy tariffs on aluminium and steel imports was the most immediate catalyst for Cohn’s departure, the New York Times reported citing officials as saying. A long time proponent of free trade, Cohn believed the decision to raise tariffs on imported steel by 25 per cent and on aluminium by 10 per cent could jeopardize economic growth.

Trump’s lawyer pressurized porn star: Attorney IANS, WASHINGTON

T

he attorney representing a porn star who is suing Donald Trump has said that the US President’s personal lawyer had a restraining order issued against her and continues to pressurize her to keep silent, a media report said. Stephanie Clifford, also known as Stormy Daniels, has filed a lawsuit against Trump in which she cites multiple instances of the President’s legal counsel, Michael Cohen, working to keep her from speaking out about an alleged sexual encounter, the CNN report said. Clifford’s attorney Michael Avenatti said a private mediator issued the temporary restraining order against her on behalf of Cohen on February 27, and has cautioned Clifford to keep quiet as recently as

We do not take kindly to threats, nor will we be intimidated, the attorney said.

March 7. “Earlier today (March 7), Cohen through his attorney, (Lawrence) Rosen, further threatened my client in an effort to prevent her from telling the truth about what really

happened,” Avenatti told CNN on March 7. “We do not take kindly to these threats, nor will we be intimidated.” According to the legal complaint filed in California state court, Clif-

ford is claiming that a non-disclosure agreement is void because Trump never signed it himself. The “hush” agreement allegedly regards an affair involving the two several years before Trump was in office. Just weeks before the 2016 election, Cohen paid Clifford $130,000, an admission he made in a statement last month. “Despite Trump’s failure to sign the Hush Agreement, Cohen proceeded to cause $130,000.00 to be wired to the trust account of Clifford’s attorney,” the document stated. He did so even though there was no legal agreement and thus no written nondisclosure agreement whereby Clifford was restricted from disclosing the truth about Trump,” the document added.


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HOLI specIaL SPECIAL REPORT x

RIOT OF COLORS SPRUCES UP FESTIVE SPIRIT, WELCOMES SPRING Amid shouts of ‘Holi Hai’, people swarmed into public spaces splashing colorful powders and water on each other to celebrate the seasonal festival IANS, NEW DELHI

Celebrities send Holi wishes on Twitter

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illions of young and old across the country this week celebrated Holi, smearing vibrant colors on each other and exchanging sweets to spread joy and welcome the beginning of spring in India. Amid shouts of Holi Hai and roadside dances to the beat of drums, people — rich and poor, Hindus and Muslims and from other religions — swarmed into public spaces to splash powders of myriad colors on each other and celebrate the seasonal festival of colors, marking the end of winter. The celebrations began amid bright sunshine in many parts of the country. People came out of their houses to smear each other with colored powder, colored water and mud as well. Families prepared traditional delicacies like gujia, a sweet fried dumpling made with semolina. The festival, which, like many Indian festivals is embedded in a Hindu mythology — that of the triumph of good over evil — brings together people of all classes and religions who sing and dance, distribute sweets. In Delhi, people were seen dancing to the beats of drums and smearing each others’ faces with abir and gulal, as colors traditionally used in Holi are known. Delhi Police said it had made proper arrangements in case of any hooliganism during the celebrations, requesting the people to obey rules for safe celebration and stay away from drunken driving. Authorities said no untoward incident was reported from anywhere in the national capital where barricades had been set up at many places to check trouble as

MUMBAI: Many celebrities sent out Holi wishes to their fans, urging them to enjoy a safe and happy festival of colors. We list a few:

The festival, which, like many Indian festivals, is embedded in a Hindu mythology — that of the triumph of good over evil — brings together people of all classes and religions who sing and dance, distribute sweets. (Photo: IANS)

more than 2,500 traffic policemen were on duty to keep a close watch on those flouting road safety norms and creating problems, particularly for women. As the festival is associated with revelry and boisterous fun, many were seen consuming bhang (an edible preparation of cannabis) to add zest to their celebrations. Youngsters rode motorbikes, throwing colors in the air and shouting Holi hai!’. Similar celebrations were reported from other urban and rural pockets of the country. Children did what they do best — playing pranks by spraying colored water with pichkaris or water guns and hurling water-filled balloons at passers-by from rooftops and balconies of their houses.

Even politicians and celebrities also did not remain far off from the revelry of the day. President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s tweets greeted the countrymen. Kovind prayed for peace, joy and prosperity in everyone’s lives, remarking that “Holi is a celebration of harmony in our society. The Prime Minister also wished everyone “Happy Holi”. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh celebrated Holi with NSG commandos at his residence in New Delhi. In Srinagar, Border Security Force troopers celebrated the day with faces smeared with color, dance during a camp on Humhama on the outskirts of the city. In Punjab, Chief Minister

Amarinder Singh greeted the people with a call for celebrating the festival with the colors of unity, tolerance, brotherhood and compassion. In his message, he exhorted the people to celebrate the festival of love in a spirit of harmony, coupled with collective prayers for prosperity. In West Bengal, Holi was celebrated with mirth and gaiety as people participated in great numbers and swayed to popular beats. While the Bengali community dominated the Dol (spring festival similar to Holi), it was the turn of the non-Bengali communities (predominantly Marwaris, Gujratis and Biharis) to splash color on one another to soak in the Holi spirit too. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee took to Twitter to

Amitabh Bachchan: Happy Holi... The colors of life be within you ever. Anupam Kher: Happy Holi to all of you. May God fill your life with all the colors of happiness, peace and prosperity. Juhi Chawla: The festival signifies the victory of good over evil,the arrival of spring, the end of winter and for many a festive day to meet others, play and laugh, forget and forgive and repair broken relationships. Wishing you a very Happy Holi! I hope you remember, no plastic balloons. Akshay Kumar: This Holi be kind, don't throw color on animals. —IANS

wish the people on the occasion. “Heartiest greetings to all on the auspicious occasion of Holi. May the colors of peace and happiness fill your lives,” she said. Bollywood stars like Amitabh Bachchan, Anupam Kher and Juhi Chawla sent out Holi wishes to their fans, urging them to enjoy a safe and happy festival of colors.

CITIES OF MYRIAD SHADES

BJP workers celebrate Holi with fervor in New Delhi. (Photo: IANS)

Janta Dal United (JDU) workers playing with colors in Patna. (Photo: IANS)

Holi celebrations underway in Kolkata, (Photo: Kuntal Chakrabarty/IANS)

Punjab Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu celebrates Holi with Border Security Force (BSF) in Khasa.


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india news

Working for emotional integration of NE: Modi The election results in three states — Tripura, Meghalaya, Nagaland — created a festive atmosphere, said the PM IANS, NEW DELHI

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rime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said that policies in the past had led to a feeling of alienation among the people of the northeast but his government has worked with success towards emotional integration of the region. Modi, who was addressing a statelevel Youth Convention in Karnataka, via video conference on the theme ‘Youth Power: A vision for New India’ said “radicalization” can only be answered with “integration”. “We have taken a pledge for emotional integration of the northeast and have proven this,” Modi said. “The decisions and policies in the past have been such that it created a feeling of alienation among the people of the northeast. People felt cut off not only from development but from a sense of belonging. “This feeling was also there due to other problems. Over the last four years, our decisions and policies tried to fill this gap, to address this sense of alienation.” The convention at Tumakuru in the poll-bound state was organized to mark the Silver Jubilee Celebrations of the Ramakrishna Vivekananda Ashram to celebrate the 125th anniversary of Swami Vivekananda’s address in Chicago and to celebrate Sister Nivedita’s 150th birth anniversary. Modi said that the election results in three northeastern states — Tripura, Meghalaya, Nagaland — again created a festive atmosphere in the country after Holi and the “verdict in itself was a big change”. While the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) scored an emphatic victory in

Biplab Deb-led Tripura govt all set to assume office AGARTALA: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Biplab Kumar Deb will assume office on Friday as the 11th Chief Minister of Tripura, where the BJP voted out the Left Front after 25 years, in the February 18 election. Union Minister Nitin Gadkari earlier on Tuesday announced here that Tripura BJP President Deb will be the new Chief Minister while the party’s tribal leader Jishnu Debbarma will be the Deputy Chief Minister. Earlier, the newly-elected MLAs of the BJP and its ally — Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT) —

met here in the presence of central observers Gadkari and Union Tribal Affairs Minister Jual Oram and elected Deb as leader of the party’s Legislature Party. Biplab Deb After the announcement, Deb, accompanied by other BJP leaders, met Governor Tathagata Roy at the Raj Bhavan and staked claim to form the government. —IANS

Rio sworn in as Nagaland CM KOHIMA: Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) leader Neiphiu Rio was on Thursday sworn in as the Chief Minister of Nagaland. This is Rio’s fourth term. Governor P.B. Acharya administered the oath of office and secrecy to the 67-year-old Rio, who is heading a People’s Democratic Alliance (PDA) coalition. Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)

Tripura, the party improved its performance in Nagaland and Meghalaya. The three states are poised to have National Democratic Alliance (NDA) governments. The Prime Minister said he was not looking at the results in terms of victory and defeat but said these were important because the whole

leader Yanthungo Patton was made the Deputy Chief Minister. The PDA draws 18 members from NDPP, 12 from BJP, one from the Janata Dal-United and an IndepenNeiphiu Rio dent in the 60member Nagaland Assembly. —IANS

country took part in the celebration of the verdict. “Such occasions are few when an event of northeast becomes an event of the country. People of country sat in front of television according to their expectations as if they are part of the electoral battle.” “The temperament that the coun-

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses party workers in New Delhi on March 3. (Photo: Twitter/@BJP4India)

Conrad Sangma takes charge of Meghalaya as CM SHILLONG: National People’s Party (NPP) leader Conrad Kongkal Sangma, son of former Lok Sabha Speaker Purno Sangma, was on Tuesday sworn in as the 12th Chief Minister of Meghalaya. Governor Ganga Prasad administered the oath of office and secrecy to the 40-year-old Tura Lok Sabha member, who was projected as the leader of the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) coalition. The MDA includes five political par-

try has shown after the verdict in the northeast (it has shown to) every person in northeast that the entire country is connected to their feelings... this powerful message has been given,” Modi said. Modi said that an impression was created that Maoism and Left wing extremism prevails in areas inhabit-

ties that include six MLAs from the United Democratic Party, four from the People’s Democratic Front, two each from the Hill State People’s Democratic Party (HSPDP) and the Conrad Sangma BJP, one from the Nationalist Congress Party besides two Independent members. —IANS

ed by tribals and this was being used to keep them away from the mainstream so that divisive forces get strengthened. “But results in Tripura have created a different example. The tribal brothers and sisters have voted onesided for the BJP and rejected this politics of hate,” Modi said.

BRIEFS

SC upholds Hadiya’s marriage NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Thursday restored the marriage of Kerala woman Hadiya, formerly a Hindu, with Shafin Jahan, setting aside a Kerala High Court order annulling their wedding. A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra said in a brief operative order that a probe by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) into the criminal aspect of the case, if any, would however continue. Shafin Jahan had chal-

lenged the High Court order that nullified the marriage. On October 3, the Supreme Court had said it would examine whether the High Court could annul the marriage following a petition by her parents.

CBI registers fresh Rs 321 crore case against Nirav Modi

Modi talks tough as more statues are targeted

NEW DELHI: The CBI on Thursday said that it has registered a fresh case against diamantaire Nirav Modi for causing a loss of Rs 321 crore to Punjab National Bank (PNB) by availing different credit facilities between 2013 and 2017. According to a Central Bureau of Investigation official, the case was registered after the bureau received a fresh complaint from the PNB on Sunday.

NEW DELHI: The attacks on statues snowballed into a major political storm on Wednesday when busts of Dalit icon B.R. Ambedkar in Meerut and Jana Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee in Kolkata were damaged, forcing Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah to speak tough against vandalism and warning the guilty of stern action. Following the strong con-

Former finance president of Nirav Modi’ Firestar Diamonds International Ltd. Vipul Ambani, chief finance officer Ravi Gupta and other officials of the company were also named in the complaint.

demnation by BJP bigwigs and a massive political backlash in Tamil Nadu, state party leader H. Raja expressed heartfelt regrets over his Facebook post suggesting removal of the statue of Dravidian icon Periyar E.V. Ramasamy.


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INDIA FEATUREindia feature x

BJP conquers northeast, eyes 2019 The election results in three north-eastern states are expected to help the BJP keep up its electoral momentum for Karnataka and expand its footprint for 2019 Lok Sabha elections PRASHANT SOOD, NEW DELHI,

T

he Bharatiya Janata Party appears to have consolidated its position as the principal pole of Indian politics due to its stunning victory in Tripura and its improved performance in Meghalaya and Nagaland with the results also showing that Congress continues to face multiple challenges to check its slide in the states. The results are expected to help the BJP keep up its electoral momentum for the crucial electoral battle in Karnataka in about two months and expand its footprint to new areas for 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The results are also expected to boost the morale of BJP workers in the difficult challenges the party faces to retain Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh at the end of the year. The BJP’s concerted push in Tripura, based on solid work at the grassroots, has given a jolt to the Left parties who have ruled the northeastern state for 25 years, and virtually decimated the Congress, which was the principal opposition party, with 36 per cent vote share in 2013 elections. With victory in Tripura, where the BJP had lost its deposit on 49 of 50 seats it contested in 2013 elections, the party has now set its

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been giving a special thrust to the development of northeast since he came to power in 2014 and has been sending central ministers on regular tours to the region. (Photo: IANS)

eyes on winning Kerala, West Bengal and Odisha — three other states where it has traditionally been on a weak wicket. BJP’s victory in Tripura has come on the back of its victory in Assam and was its first direct contest with the Left parties. With the National Democratic Alliance winning both Tripura and Nagaland and a hung house in

Meghalaya, Mizoram is now the only northeastern state out of the ambit of NDA. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been giving a special thrust to the development of northeast since he came to power in 2014 and has been sending central ministers on regular tours to the region, which has severe development challenges and has faced challenge of militancy.

The government has also worked towards sustaining peace in the northeast and improving its connect with the neighboring countries for enhanced business opportunities. For a party seen to be inextricably linked to Hindutva, the outcome in Tripura coupled with improved performance in Christian-majority Nagaland and Meghalaya has come as a morale-booster. The northeast

region has 25 Lok Sabha seats. The Congress tally came down in Meghalaya, where it was in power, and it failed to open its account in Tripura and Nagaland. The northeast has been a Congress bastion in the past but in both Tripura and Nagaland it was barely in contest. The party was short of resources and some of its internal differences came out in the open. Five of its 23 candidates in Nagaland withdrew from the contest due to severe shortage of funds. The party’s Nagaland unit president, Kewe Khape Therie, complained that its candidates were on an “abandoned ship” and sought resignation of AICC general secretary-in-charge C.P. Joshi for the failures of the party in the northeast. The election outcome seems to have interrupted the momentum that the Congress was building against the Modi government following its improved performance in Gujarat and the byelection victories in Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. The party would have to make more concerted efforts to pin down the Modi government on the issue of corruption over the huge frauds in public sector banks and the flight of the main accused from the country. The Congress is holding its plenary later this month and has to work out a strategy to arrest its downward slide while getting back to its winning ways.

A differently-abled woman’s relentless fight for accessibility In a country that is indifferent to the plight of the disabled, Virali Modi made 'accessibility for everyone' her life’s mission BHAVANA AKELLA, BENGALURU

N

ever give up — these were the simple yet profound words that kept Virali Modi, 26, fighting on after a deadly bout of malaria had her comatose for weeks and left her paraplegic and wheelchair-bound at the age of 14. In coma for 23 days, she miraculously opened her eyes on the day the doctors decided to remove her life-support and has not stopped since then, fighting for her rights — and those of other disabled people. Manhandled and groped by railway porters when she had to board a train, Virali made “accessibility for everyone” her life’s mission in a country that is supremely indifferent to the plight of the disabled.

“I’m a disabled woman from Mumbai who loves to travel. I’ve been groped and manhandled three separate times by porters who were helping me board the train because Indian trains are not wheelchair accessible. “I’ve had to wear a diaper because I couldn’t use the train’s lavatory. My fight is to ensure human dignity for the disabled,” Virali wrote in a public petition about a year ago that caught the attention of tens of thousands of netizens across the country, including Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi, who responded to Virali, assuring accessibility in trains. Addressed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and then Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, her brutal-

ly honest petition on the platform change.org shared her ordeal as a disabled person on an Indian train. “Most people with disabilities are restricted to their homes because our roads, public transport and most of our infrastructure are not wheelchair-friendly. The disabled don’t know where to go and how to get there, making disability almost an invisibility in our country,” Mumbai-based Virali told IANS in an interview. While her petition and campaign — which she named “My Train Too” — garnered massive support in the digital world with over 200,000 people standing by her, not much translated into reality until she decided to take matters into her own hands. “Several rail-

Virali Modi at Ernakulam Railway station in Kerala during the unveiling of portable ramps in the station. (Photo: IANS)

way officials who read my petition contacted me, wanting to work on making trains accessible. “ “Together, with the help of a few non-governmental organizations, we have set up portable

ramps and foldable wheelchairs at railway stations in Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram, Thrissur, Ernakulam, Chennai and Coimbatore”, informed Virali, who is also a motivational speaker.


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US man admits killing Kuchibotla The murderer also confessed that he also tried to kill Alok Madasani and Ian Grillot, the American hero who tried to defend the two Indians during attack at a sports bar ARUL LOUIS, NEW YORK

T

he man who shot Indian software engineer Srinivas Kuchibhotla after shouting, “Get out of my country” has admitted in an US state court to the murder that shocked the nation. Adam Purinton also admitted in the Kansas court this week to attempting to murder Alok Madasani and Ian Grillot, the American hero, who tried to defend the two Indians during the attack at a sports bar in Olathe in February 2017. Since he has admitted to the killing and the attacks, there would not be a full trial, sparing the victims and their families the agony of reliving the incident in court testimonies. Purinton is scheduled to be sentenced on May 4. However, Purinton, who is white, has also been charged separately in a federal court with hate crime murder by federal prosecutors who allege that he targeted Kuchibhotla and Madasani because of their race, ethnicity or national origin. KCUR radio station reported that

(From Left) Republican Representative Kevin Yoder from Kansas, Sunayana Dumala, the widow of Srinivas Kuchibhotla and House Speaker Paul Ryan. Dumala said that the verdict will send a strong message that hate is never acceptable.

in a filing in February, the federal judge told the federal Attorney General Jeff Sessions to decide within 90 days whether to seek the death penalty for Purinton in that case. In the state court on Tuesday, the 52-year-old ex-navy man

Trump is taking US backwards, says Indian-American filmmaker NEW DELHI: Indian-American Saila Kariat, who has made her directing debut with The Valley, says the US — where a debate on immigrants has been raging — is going “backwards” under the leadership of President Donald Trump. “Starting as a child, I immigrated from US-India-Canada-US, so I have seen the evolution of attitudes towards immigrants. When I came back to the US in 1984, I felt it was so progressive compared to other countries,” Kariat told IANS in an email interview. “However, I find recent developments in the US alarming. The present government is taking the country backwards. To me, it is a clear demonstration of how leadership is so important,” she added. After living in the US for over 20 years, Kariat picked up a story about an immigrant family to tell through The Valley. But she steered away from making it a piece harping about their experiences in a foreign country. Instead, the award-winning film, which released in India on March 2, throws light on an important aspect: Depression.

agreed to the maximum sentence for each of three charges - premeditated murder, and two attempted murders. KCUR said that Judge Charles Droege explained to Purinton that by admitting his guilt he would

face life in prison for the murder, as well as a minimum of 146 months or a maximum of over 50 years in prison for the attempted murders. Purinton told the judge he understood the consequences, the

radio reported. In a court appearance in November 2017, he had denied the charges, setting the stage for the trial, but has now changed his mind. Kuchibhotla’s wife Sunayana Dumala did not attend the court but instead sent a statement: “Today’s guilty verdict in the murder of my husband will not bring back my Srinu, but it will send a strong message that hate is never acceptable. We must understand and love one another.” She is organizing a peace walk to honor Kuchibhotla on his birthday, according to KCUR. On February 22, 2017, Purinton taunted Kuchibhotla and Madasani at the bar about their immigration. After he was removed from the bar, he returned with a gun and shot them eight times, killing Kuchibhotla and injuring Madasani. He then shot Grillot, who intervened. Purinton then drove to Clinton in Missouri state where he told a bartender at a restaurant that he had shot “Iranian people”. The bartender called the police who arrested Purinton.

Mughals-inspired art on display IANS, LOS ANGELES

A

It follows a distraught father as he searches for answers after his college-age daughter’s suicide. On the idea behind making the film, Kariat said: “I have lived in Silicon Valley for over 20 years. I witnessed the pressure young people face to be successful, and the cluster suicides in some Bay Area schools. The problems experienced there can be found in most modern societies all over the world -- they are just more intense in our high tech capital. —IANS

museum is launching an exhibition “Rembrandt and the Inspiration of India” that reveals how the 17th Century Dutch painter was inspired by artists from a dramatically different culture in a country thousands of kilometers away. The March 13-June 24 exhibition of paintings by Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn at the J. Paul Getty Museum will include 23 of his works, closely based on portraits made by artists from Mughal India. “These drawings mark a striking diversion for this quintessentially Dutch ‘Golden Age’ artist, the only time he made a careful and extensive study of art from a dramatically different culture,” a J. Paul Getty Trust statement said. The trust is an international cultural and philanthropic institution devoted to the visual arts that includes the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Research Institute, the Getty Conservation Institute, and the Getty Foundation. “Rembrandt may be one of the most famous painters in European art history but there are still

The J. Paul Getty Museum is an art museum in California.

remarkable discoveries to be made about his work,” said Timothy Potts, director of museum. “This exhibition is a case in point, demonstrating how Rembrandt turned to the art of India to produce some of his most exotic and intriguing images. This vivid example of cultural exchange reminds us how artists on different continents take inspiration from one another, a reality that of course continues to this very day.” The exhibition pairs 20 of Rembrandt’s surviving drawings depicting Mughal emperors, princes, and courtiers with Indian paintings

and drawings of similar compositions, which had been brought to Amsterdam from the Dutch trading post in Surat. Rembrandt’s portraits reveal how his contact with Mughal art inspired him to draw in a newly refined and precise style. “The critical eye and attentive curiosity Rembrandt turned towards Mughal portrait conventions still captivates viewers today. At this late stage in his career, around 1656-1661, this meticulous rendering is exceptional,” said Stephanie Schrader, the organizer of the exhibition.


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Sri Lanka violence worries UN UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres is concerned by reports of communal violence in the country

Curfew temporarily lifted

ARUL LOUIS, UNITED NATIONS

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N Under-SecretaryGeneral Jeffrey Feltman is to visit the Sri Lankan city of Kandy, at the center of incidents of communal violence. He will meet religious leaders there this week, a UN spokesperson said. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres is concerned by reports of communal violence in Sri Lanka and is urging dialogue to solve the differences, his Spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said on Tuesday while announcing the visit. The visit by Feltman, who is incharge of Political Affairs at the UN, starts on Friday and it is “part of ongoing UN engagement with Sri Lanka”, Dujarric said. During the three-day visit, Feltman is also expected to meet Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and representatives of political parties and civil society groups, he said.

Probe into Russian spy poisoning starts LONDON: UK counter-terrorism officers on Thursday started investigations to uncover the origin of the nerve agent used in the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia, in Salisbury. The police said government scientists had identified the nerve agent used, but would not make that information public at this stage. A source familiar with the investigation told the BBC that it was likely to be rarer than the Sarin gas thought to have been used in Syria and in an attack on the Tokyo subway in 1995. —IANS

Sri Lankan security personnel stand guard in front of a burnt house in Kandy on March 6. (Photo: Xinhua/Gayan Sameera)

“We’re obviously concerned over the reports of the ongoing communal violence, and we welcome the government’s commitment to addressing the tensions and achieve reconciliation,” Dujarric said. “We urge all Sri Lankans to resolve their differences through dialogue.” On Tuesday, Maithripala Sirisena declared a 10-day state of Emer-

gency after communal clashes involving Buddhists and Muslims erupted in Kandy district. The violence flared up on Sunday after the funeral of a Sinhala Buddhist truck driver who died after a confrontation involving Muslims, according to officials. One Muslim man was reportedly killed when Sinhala mobs attacked Muslim houses and busi-

COLOMBO: The Sri Lankan Police on Thursday temporarily lifted the curfew in Kandy district, imposed following deadly communal clashes which left three dead and several injured. A police official told Xinhua news agency that with the heavy security presence in the district, tensions had eased with no major incidents reported on Wednesday night. The curfew, which was in place since Sunday evening, was lifted at 10 a.m. but would be re-imposed at 6 p.m., in order to maintain law and order, the official added. The government on Wednesday established hotlines for the public to register complaints if they had information on individuals promoting

nesses, setting some on fire. The government has deployed police and military forces to patrol potential trouble spots to prevent violence.

racism or inciting communal violence. Violent clashes erupted in Kandy on Sunday evening after a 41-year-old man succumbed to his injuries following an altercation on February 22. Several homes, shops, temples and mosques were burnt and damaged. On Tuesday, President Maithripala Sirisena declared a 10-day, nationwide state of emergency, the first since the country ended a civil war in 2009. In a national address, the president appealed for calm and peace and warned of “stern action” against anyone spreading violence and rumors with the intention of provoking communal tension. —IANS

In February in another incident, five persons were injured and several shops and a mosque damaged in a clash involving the same communities in Ampara in eastern Sri Lanka.

UN demands access for aid convoys in Syria IANS, UNITED NATIONS

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he UN has demanded that all parties involved in the conflict in Syria allow new humanitarian convoys access to the besieged rebel-held area of Eastern Ghouta, after the first delivery earlier this week could not be completed due to a lack of security. The UN on Tuesday specifically demanded that the aid delivery, scheduled for Thursday in Duma, the main town in the area under rebel control, be carried out. The objective of the mission, the UN reiterated, was to assist 70,000 people, according to a plan that was approved by the Syrian authorities,

Syrian tanks move into liberated areas of Eastern Ghouta on March 7. (Photo: Xinhua)

Efe news reported on Wednesday. The call was made by the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres through a statement from his

spokesperson Stephane Dujarric. Guterres said that every party had an obligation under international law to protect civilians and

guarantee the safety of humanitarian personnel. He said Monday’s attacks in East Ghouta claimed over 100 lives. The violence prevented the humanitarian convoy, arranged by the UN and other organizations, from unloading all the aid in Duma, where it was scheduled to deliver materials for 27,500 people in need. According to Guterres, 14 of the 46 trucks of the convoy could not distribute all their shipment and, therefore, almost half of the food transported remained undelivered. In addition, the UN denounced the Syrian authorities for their confiscation of medical materials that were to be included in the shipment.

North’s Kim Jong-un to meet South Korean leader at April summit US imposes new sanctions on N. Korea

IANS, SEOUL

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outh Korea and North Korea have agreed to hold a summit of their leaders in April, South Korean President Moon Jaein’s top security adviser said on Tuesday after a rare trip to Pyongyang. North Korean leader Kim Jongun also agreed to hold “candid” talks with the US about the denuclearization issue of the Korean peninsula and normalize the countries’ bilateral ties, Chung Euiyong told a press briefing. The inter-Korean summit

Chung Eui-yong (Photo: Yonhap)

between Moon and Kim will be held at the joint security area of Panmunjeom.

WASHINGTON: The US has announced new, unspecified sanctions against Pyongyang for using a chemical weapon to assassinate Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un, in February 2017. These sanctions come after the investigation into the assassination of Kim Jong-nam concluded on February 22, Efe news reported on Tuesday. —IANS

The announcement, which was not widely expected, followed Chung’s two-day trip to Pyongyang as Moon’s special envoy, Yonhap news agency reported. While in Pyongyang, Chung and four other South Korean envoys held an unprecedented meeting with the reclusive North Korean leader. “The South and the North have agreed to set up a hotline between their leaders to allow close consultations and a reduction of military tension, while also agreeing to hold the first phone conversation before the third South-North summit,” Chung said.

North Korea also restated its commitment to rid itself of nuclear weapons, according to Chung. Chung said the North also promised to suspend all military provocations, including nuclear tests and ballistic missile launches, as long the US-North Korea talks progress. The recent rapprochement between the two Koreas followed the resumption of inter-Korean dialogue to discuss the North’s participation in the Winter Olympic Games. Following the two-day trip by the special envoys to North Korea, US President Donald Trump said the North appeared to be “sincere”.


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BJP ministers quit Andhra cabinet Medical and Health Minister and Endowments Minister handed the letters of resignation to the CM

‘Support to whoever gives state SCS’

IANS, AMARAVATI (ANDHRA PRADESH)

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JP ministers Kamineni Srinivas Rao and P. Manikyala Rao have tendered their resignations to Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu. Medical and Health Minister Srinivas Rao and Endowments Minister Manikyala Rao met the Chief Minister in his chamber in the Assembly and handed the letters of resignation to him. They thanked Naidu for the opportunity as the Chief Minister also appreciated their efficient working. Later, Srinivas Rao said: “I had the privilege of working with him for more than three-and-a-half years. I recently asked him about his opinion on my work. He gave me the certificate that I have no enemies,” he said. Manikyala Rao said he learned

TDP pulled out of the Narendra Modi government in protest against refusal of the Centre to grant Special Category Status to Andhra Pradesh. (Photo: IANS)

to operate a computer because of Naidu’s stress on use of technology in the administration. “Earlier, I knew only making and receiving calls. I was never used to texting. Now, I operate computer because of Naidu’s thrust on the use of technology...,”

Karnataka ombudsman stabbed, attacker held BENGALURU: Karnataka Lokayukta Justice P. Vishwanatha Shetty had a miraculous escape this week after he was stabbed repeatedly by a disgruntled man at his office here, police said. The attacker was arrested while Shetty was said to be out of danger. Tejraj Sharma, 33, who was apparently unhappy with the ombudsman, managed to enter the Lokayukta office with a knife taking advantage of a malfunctioning metal detector, authorities said. “The man was immediately detained,” Bengaluru Commissioner of Police T. Suneel Kumar told reporters here. Shetty, 73, earlier a judge in the

1993 Mumbai blasts accused held in Dubai MUMBAI: Twenty-five years after his escape, the CBI has arrested absconder Farookh Takla, an accused in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts and a close aide of fugitive mafia don Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar, from Dubai, official sources said. He was brought to Mumbai earlier this week and whisked off to the CBI offices for questioning. He will be produced before a Special TADA Court later in the day for remand. —IANS

Karnataka High Court, was rushed to a private hospital in the city centre where doctors said he was out of danger. Chief MinisP. V. Shetty ter Siddaramaiah visited the hospital. “The doctors say he is out of danger.” Initial investigations revealed that the metal detector in the Lokayukta office building was not functioning, Kumar said. Sharma, a furniture supplier from Tumakuru, about 70 km northwest from here, had filed a complaint about a local government office, the police said.

he said. The resignation came ahead of the presentation of the budget for 2018-19 in the Assembly by Finance Minister Y. Ramakrishnudu, a party official said. Both BJP ministers had stayed away from the cabinet meeting

AMARAVATI (ANDHRA PRADESH): YSR Congress chief Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy has said the party would support whoever promises Andhra Pradesh the Special Category Status (SCS). “Whoever signs the Special Category Status file will get our support,” Reddy told the media in Prakasam district. He said both the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had cheated Andhra Pradesh by promising but not granting the SCS. The BJP-led NDA government ruled out SCS to AP, citing 14th finance commission report not to grant SCS to any state. Meanwhile, Congress President Rahul Gandhi has announced that his party would grant SCS to Andhra Pradesh if voted to power.

Unwell Parrikar arrives in US IANS, PANAJI/MUMBAI

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oa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, who reached the US for medical treatment, is reportedly suffering from an advanced stage of pancreatic cancer. Sources in Mumbai’s Lilavati Hospital and the Goa Medical College and Hospital — the two health facilities where the former Defence Minister was admitted since February 15 — have confirmed he has cancer. Meanwhile, both the ruling and opposition parties in the state have demanded that the government should make a formal statement on the health of the Chief Minister, who has landed in New York and has been taken to a specialist health facility there.

Earlier it was denied that the CM was suffering from pancreatic cancer.

“It’s at quite an advanced stage”, said a source who declined to be identified, adding that there was “probable metastasis”, meaning it may have spread. On February 18, some media reports had mentioned that the Chief Minister was suffering from

TN statue row: BJP’s Raja expresses regret IANS, CHENNAI

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ours after a bomb attack on a BJP office, BJP National Secretary H. Raja has expressed regret for his Facebook page calling for the razing of statues of iconic Dravidian leader E.V. Ramasamy or Periyar in Tamil Nadu. As a fallout of Raja’s comment and the vandalizing of Periyar’s statue at Thirupattur in Vellore

here that was convened to formally approve the budget. The development comes after the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) this week announced its decision to pull out of the Narendra Modi government in protest against refusal of the Centre to grant Special Category Status to Andhra Pradesh, saying the Centre has done injustice to the state. Naidu announced to the media that two TDP ministers — P. Ashok Gajapathi Raju (Civil Aviation) and Y.S. Chowdary (Minister of State for Science and Technology) — will tender their resignations. The TDP is second-largest party after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the National Democratic Alliance (NDA). In the Lok Sabha, the TDP has 16 members and in the Rajya Sabha six. It is the first pre-poll partner of the BJP to pull out of the Modi government after being part of it for nearly four years.

district, several Tamil Brahmins were attacked in Triplicane area here and their sacred thread were cut by vandals on two wheelers raising pro-Ramasamy slogans. According to a police official, four persons have surrendered in connection with the assault though no formal complaint was registered by the affected persons. This week, a petrol bomb was hurled at a BJP office in Coimbatore, around 500 km from here, by

BJP National Secretary H. Raja. (Photo: IANS)

unidentified persons. Later, in a fresh Facebook post, Raja expressed his heartfelt regret for his earlier post which he

advanced stage IV of pancreatic cancer. The hospital had denied this. A statement issued by the Chief Minister’s Office earlier this week said that Parrikar had landed in the US and maintained that “he is fine and will undergo further treatment”. claimed was a message posted by his social media administrator without his permission and hence he had removed it. Raja expressed regret for the earlier post which sparked outrage. According to him, damaging the statues of Ramasamy could not be condoned. The message that was posted and later removed said: “Who is Lenin? What is the connection between him (Lenin) and India? What connection between Communism and India? “Lenin’s statue was broken down in Tripura. Today it is Lenin’s statue in Tripura, tomorrow it will be the statue of caste fanatic E.V. Ramasamy.”


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Shami’s wife alleges domestic violence The Indian pacer, however, denied the allegations of the abuse, saying it is an attempt to derail his cricket career IANS, KOLKATA

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ndia pacer Mohammed Shami found himself in the centre of a controversy this week following accusations of domestic violence and extra-marital affairs by his wife Hasain Jahan. Jahan posted screenshots of Shami’s alleged WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger conversations with multiple women on her Facebook account. She also uploaded photos and phone numbers of the women. Hasin Jahan alleged that Shami, 27, and members of his family had even tried to kill her. “Everyone in their family used to torture me. His mother and brother used to abuse me. The tortures continued till 2-3 a.m. in the morning. They even wanted to kill me,” she alleged.

Hasin Jahan uploaded photos and phone numbers of the several women. She also alleged that Shami, 27, and his family members had even tried to kill her. (File Photo:IANS)

India aim to bounce back from SL loss COLOMBO: A new-look Indian team will aim to recover from the five-wicket loss against Sri Lanka in the opening match when they face Bangladesh in the second match of the Nidahas Trophy Twenty20 International (T20I) cricket tri-series here. Kusal Perera’s brilliant 66 off 37 balls and some crucial contributions from the middle-order helped Sri Lanka beat India in the first game. After the Indian batsmen put up a decent target of 175, their bowlers failed to make a mark as the hosts hammered them all around the park. Spinners Yuzvendra Chahal (2/37) and Washington Sundar (2/28) provided the crucial breakthroughs to control the run-flow. Towards the end, Dasun Shanaka (15 not out) and Thisara Perera (22 not out) played sensibly and helped their team clinch the issue. After the loss, skipper Rohit Sharma said that the track was good and batsmen could have score more towards the end. So in the upcoming match, middle and lower-order batsmen will aim to contribute and try to give the perfect finish. On the other hand, Bangladesh will take on the field without their regular skipper and all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan. In his absence, Mahmudullah will take charge. —IANS

Seamer left out of BCCI contracts MUMBAI: Seamer Mohammed Shami found himself out of the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) 26-member annual contracts system, which saw the addition of a new category. Shami’s removal may be a coincidence with the ongoing controversy involving his wife, who accused the Bengal pacer, of domestic violence and extra-marital affairs. —IANS

“He even abused me and started beating me. All this continued after he returned from South Africa. He has been doing this for quite some time now and now I have had enough,” she said.

“I gave him enough time (to rectify himself) and tried to calm myself down but instead of accepting his own mistakes, he used to vent his anger on me and even threaten me, asking to keep mum for my own goodwill,” she added. Shami, however, denied the allegations, saying it was an attempt to derail his cricket career. He hails from Uttar Pradesh and represents Bengal in domestic tournaments. “Hi I’m Mohammad Shami. Ye jitna bhi news hamara personal life ke bare may chal raha hai, ye sab sarasar jhut hai, ye koi bahut bada humare khilap sajish hai or ye mujhe badnam karne or mera game kharab karne ka kosis ki ja rahi hai (I deny all that is going on regarding my personal life. This is a conspiracy against me and it is being done to hamper my game),” Shami tweeted.

Indian hockey team outplays Malaysia IANS, IPOH (MALAYSIA)

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brilliant performance helped India outplay Malaysia 5-1 this week to keep the chances alive to play in the final of the 27th Sultan Azlan Shah Cup. India rode on splendid goals by Shilanand Lakra (10th minute), Gurjant Singh (42nd, 57th), Sumit Kumar (48th) and Ramandeep Singh (51st) to beat hosts Malaysia and kept their chances to

play in the final after a series of underwhelming performances. In the first game, India lost to Argentina 2-3 followed by a draw against England. In the third match, India lost to Australia 2-4. Coming into the match after a stunning 2-1 win against Olympic Champions Argentina, Malaysia were quick to get off the blocks, attacking India’s circle with their front runner Faizal Saari attempting the team’s first shot on goal. He beat three Indian defenders

India lost to Argentina 2-3 followed by a draw against England. (File Photo: IANS)

into the circle but couldn’t make a potential connection to score. But it was India who drew the first blood with an opening goal The action boiled down to the

final quarter when India changed gears and attacked the hosts who looked like they were losing steam. India will take on Ireland in their last round-robin match.

Teen shooter Manu caps superb rise with World Cup gold IANS, NEW DELHI

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aving created a splash with two gold medals at the Shooting World Cup, Haryana teenager Manu Bhaker is the latest sensation to join the long list of star shooters from India. Manu not only won the women’s 10m Air Pistol gold medal but also partnered Om Prakash Mitharval for the 10m Air Pistol mixed team title in Guadalajara, Mexico this week. In the individual event, the Indian debutant shot a total of 237.5 to prevail over home favorite Alejandra Zavala Vazquez, who finished second with a total of 237.1.

In the individual event, the Indian debutant shot 237.5 score. (Photo: IANS)

Frenchwoman Celine Goberville finished third with a score of 217.0. For someone who took to shoot-

ing just a little over two years ago, Manu’s rise to stardom has been nothing short of meteoric.

She made heads turn during her maiden venture into the senior level last year by breaking two long-standing national records in a span of less than a month. But when asked about her feats the 16-year-old laughed them off as happenstance. “It (breaking records) just happens. I don’t think about them. At times I don’t even know what the records are. People tell me afterwards that I have broken a record. I would like to thank all my coaches for their advice and the hours they have put in to hone my technique,” she said after claiming gold in the girls’ 10m Air Pistol at the Khelo India School Games last month.


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oscar special OSCAR SPECIAL x

‘The Shape of Water’ wins big at 90th Academy Awards

Gary Oldman won Best Actor award for Darkest Hour and actress Frances McDormand nabbed her best actress Oscar for Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri

Man held for stealing McDormand’s Oscar

From left, Sam Rockwell, Francis McDormand, Allison Janney and Gary Oldman pose at press room of the 90th Academy Awards. (Photo: IANS) IANS, LOS ANGELES

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uillermo del Toro’s directed The Shape of Water emerged as the big winner with four honors at the 90th Academy Awards ceremony — including Best Picture — where celebration of cinema was laced with political jibes as well as powerful statements on debates like sexual harassment, immigration and gender balance that are plaguing Hollywood. Gary Oldman won Best Actor award for his role as Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour and actress Frances McDormand

nabbed her second best actress Oscar for Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri, two decades after winning an award for Fargo. There were jibes at US president Donald Trump and disgraced producer Harvey Weinstein, while some celebrities pledged support to immigrants and pitched for gender balance in the industry. India had missed the Oscar race in the foreign film category this year with Newton being ousted in initial stages of the shortlist. Also, Indian actor Ali Fazal-starrer Victoria & Abdul and Anupam Kher-starrer The Big Sick lost on their chance to win an Oscar. Pop-

LOS ANGELES: This year’s best actress Oscar winner Frances McDormand’s trophy was briefly stolen at the official after-party, following which a man suspected of stealing it was arrested. The Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri actress was at the party getting her Oscar engraved. But later, the 60-year-old realized the trophy was missing. Terrence “Terry” Bryant Jr, 47, was arrested last week for the alleged crime, and booked early March 5 morning. He was charged with grand theft and police set a bail of $20,000,

ular TV host Jimmy Kimmel opened the night at Dolby Theatre by revisiting the past. Amid the sexual misconduct allegations that have emerged in Hollywood and across the world since complaints against disgraced producer Weinstein came to the fore, Kimmel poked fun at the Oscar statuette. “Oscar is a very respected man in Hollywood, just look at him. He keeps his hands where you can see them, never says a rude word, and most importantly, no penis at all. He’s literally a statue of limitation,” he quipped. Coming to the winners, The

according to the Los Angeles Police Department, reported ABC News. The police said in a statement: “The incident occurred as Bryant was exiting The Governors Ball. He was photographed holding an Oscar. The photographer did not recognize Bryant as a recipient from the awards show and believed he was in possession of a trophy which did not belong to him. “The photographer followed Bryant and without any resistance from Bryant took the Oscar from him. Security at the event was notified and detained Bryant. The Oscar was returned to the recipient.” —IANS

Shape Of Water dominated the show — much like this year’s nominations — with four awards. It came as a surprise considering filmmaker Guillermo del Toro is facing a copyright infringement lawsuit for the film. Toro took home the golden statuette in the Best Director category for the film. The Shape Of Water was also named as the Best Picture, along with Best Production Design and Best Score accolades. At 89, filmmaker James Ivory became the oldest Oscar winner for his adapted screenplay for Call Me By Your Name.

Shashi Kapoor, Sridevi remembered at Oscars 2018 LOS ANGELES: Indian cinema icon Shashi Kapoor and India’s first female superstar Sridevi were honored at the 90th Academy Awards ceremony during the “In Memoriam” montage. The Indian stars got a musical tribute by Eddie Vedder who took the stage to sing Tom Petty’s “Room at the top”. Actress Jennifer Garner introduced the segment by paying tribute to late star Audrey Hepburn. “There is no joy without sorrow,” Garner said, and then acknowledged the loss of film world with the departed souls. Son of Prithviraj Kapoor and younger brother of Raj Kapoor and Shammi Kapoor, Shashi Kapoor

Actors Shashi Kapoor (Left) and Sridevi. (Photo: IANS)

made his debut in Bollywood with the 1961 film Dharmputra after working as a child artist. He passed away in

December 2017. Bollywood’s ultimate “charm house” Shashi Kapoor then went on to make a name for himself globally by associating with interna-

tional cinema. He was honored with the Padma Bhushan — the third highest civilian honor — by the Indian government in 2011. In 2015, he was bestowed with the Dadasaheb Phalke Award. Sridevi, known for her ability to slip into myriad roles, expressive eyes, sheer comic timing and her fluid dancing skills, died on February 24. Her death left everyone shocked, and saddened. They were included in the annual montage along with stars such as John Heard, Tony Anne Walker, Jane Foray, Robert Osborne, Martin Landau, Glenne Headly, Roger Moore, George A. Romero and Jerry Lewis.

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ENTERTAINMENTcinema news x

‘Shammi Aunty’ is no more Veteran character actress for nearly six decades, Nargis Rabadi, popularly known as 'Shammi Aunty', died at her home; She was 87 IANS, MUMBAI

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character actress for nearly six decades, Nargis Rabadi, popularly known as ‘Shammi Aunty’ in the industry, died at her home, aged 87. According to Bollywood personality Ashok Shekhar, she had been ailing for some time. She breathed her last at her Juhu Circle home. Her funeral took place at the Oshiwara cemetery, with celebrities like Asha Parekh, Farida Jalal, Boman Irani, Farah Khan, Annu Kapoor and Priya Dutt in attendance. She became a popular character artiste portraying supporting roles of aunt, granny, elderly spinster in the family, et al, besides acting in television serials. Shammi mostly featured in comic roles. The late actress starred in films like Coolie No. 1, Mardon Wali Baat and Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi. She also appeared in many popular television serials such as

BRIEFS Sridevi’s daughter Janhvi turns 21 MUMBAI: As Janhvi Kapoor, the elder daughter of veteran actress Sridevi whose sudden demise in Dubai last month left her family and fans in shock and disbelief, turned 21 this week. Her cousin Sonam Kapoor called her the “strongest girl”. “To one of the strongest girls I know, who became a woman today. Happy birthday Jannu. Janhvi Kapoor, 21st birthday,” Sonam captioned a smiling image of Janhvi, who is her uncle Boney Kapoor’s daughter.

The mortal remains of late actress Nargis Rabadi during her funeral in Mumbai.

Dekh Bhai Dekh, Zabaan Sambhal Ke, Shriman Shrimati, Kabhi Yeh Kabhi Woh and Filmi Chakkar. Tributes to Shammi, who was a Parsi and the former wife of legendary Bollywood filmmaker, the late Sultan Ahmed, came in from Culture Minister Mahesh Sharma, megastar Amitabh Bachchan,

designer Sandeep Khosla, Abhishek Bachchan, Farah and Divya Dutta. Sharma wrote: “My heartfelt tribute to veteran actor Shammi on her unfortunate demise. Her extensive and inspiring contribution to Indian cinema will always be remembered.” “Shammi Aunty... Prolific actress, years of contribution to the indus-

try, dear family friend... passes away. A long suffered illness, age... Sad... slowly slowly they all go away,” Amitabh, who has “fond remembrances” of her, tweeted. The actor also shared some photographs of Shammi Aunty. Abhishek Bachchan wrote: “I will really miss you Shammi Aunty... You always gave the warmest hugs and never failed to make everyone smile. So many memories, so much happiness, gone but not forgotten. Rest in peace.” Boman, who worked with Shammi in her last big screen outing Shirin Farhad Ki Toh Nikal Padi, wrote: “Bid farewell to everyone’s favorite aunty, Shammi Aunty. Played her grandson a few years ago. She was the most fun person on set. Loved her very much. Will miss her. May her soul rest in peace.” Divya said Shammi’s “talent, warmth and laughter is cherished”. Shammi was close to adopted son Iqbaal Rizzvi.

B-Town wishes Irrfan Khan speedy recovery MUMBAI: A long and healthy life for Irrfan Khan is what celebrities have wished for the actor, who has revealed that he has contracted a “rare disease” Irrfan Khan and is “fighting for choices”. Irrfan issued a statement about his life being shaken up by a rare disease, details of which he will share in a few days once there’s a conclusive diagnosis. “Till then, wish the best for me,” he wrote. Following his revelation, the film fraternity has sent out best wishes for his speedy recovery. Here’s what they tweeted: Paresh Rawal: A prayer to god to grant Irrfan Khan an exceptional talent a long and a healthy life. Suniel Shetty: No matter what, I am sure you will emerge as a hero out of this too Irrfan Khan All our prayers with you. Get well soon. Abhishek Bachchan: God speed. Nimrat Kaur: Sending you lots of love, positivity and healing Irrfan. Big hug. —IANS

Williams celebrates his first Holi in India IANS, MUMBAI

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conic American rapper Pharrell Williams celebrated his first ever Holi, along with Bollywood superstar Ranveer Singh last week in Mumbai. The party was organized by the sportswear company Adidas, whereas Pharrell visited the city to unveil the Adidas Originals this Holi collection special range of powderdyed apparel and sneakers in pastel

shades. All the guests and host played with dry colors and flower petals on the open ground of Taj Land Ends, located in Bandra. Many pretty faces like video jockey Anusha Dandekar, Celebrity chef Sarah Todd, Mini Mathur along with her two kids among others were present at the party. Dressed in the white kurta and animal printed pants and white sports shoes, the 11 times Grammy Awards winner Pharrell seems to

American rapper Pharrell Williams. (Photo: IANS)

have a great time with the host Ranveer they danced on many Bollywood songs and Punjabi dance numbers including Malharia, Dil

Dhaddakne Do, Subha Hone Na De, Mundian To Bach Ke, Khalibali, Ainvayi Ainvayi among many others.

Anupam turns 63, spends day shooting

‘Pari’: Thrills and chills but no fairy tale romance this

MUMBAI: Veteran actor Anupam Kher, who turned 63 this week, spent his birthday shooting in New York for an American series. He counted his blessings in a personalized message to his fans. In a video message posted on Twitter, Anupam narrated a short story about his life. He said: “A few years back, in fact many years back, on March 7, Pushkar Nath and Dulari had their first child in a small hill station called Shimla. They nicknamed their son Bittu. Bittu worked hard and over a period of time, Bittu became Anupam Kher. Several of his industry friends also took to social media to wish Anupam on his special day. —IANS

supernatural thriller, Pari is an unusual love story albeit with a good measure of thrills and chills. Set in Kolkata, Arnab (Parambrata Chatterjee), a Bengali bhadralok aka gentleman, is an introvert and hence readily agrees to an arranged match to please his parents. Heading back home after meeting Piyali (Ritabari Chakraborty), his father at the wheel, he accidentally knocks off an elderly woman, who falls in front of their car and dies. Aiming to help the lady’s daughter Rukhsana (Anushka Sharma) now an orphan, Arnab gives her shelter in his home for a few days as she is ostensibly scared of “those men who want to harm her”.

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Film: “Pari”; Director: Prosit Roy; Cast: Anushka Sharma, Parambrata Chatterjee, Rajat Kapoor, Ritabari Chakraborty; Rating: **

Their unusual bond amidst startling revelations of her identity, forms the crux of the film. The first half of the film supposedly has

you on the edge of your seats, as there are jump scares galore, some well-timed, others deliberate and uncalled for. The horror elements — gore and gloom, torrential rain, evil spirits, accentuated by sound design, attempted at sending a chill down your spine, end up seeming a trifle inane and ludicrous, as these are grossly overdone. The pace of the narrative however drags before half time, leaving you unsettled and bored as

the core of the film till then appears confusing and unclear. The second half picks up and you discover there is a full-fledged story after all, albeit poorly told. And that is the undoing of the film. The manner in which the narrative propels forward, is a letdown. The story although fiction, is heart-warming and touches your heart, but fails to engage you, as it unfolds after a long and convoluted run, making for tiresome viewing. Director Prosit Roy sadly does not let the film rise beyond the initial horror elements and fails to focus on story-telling. On the performance front, Anushka Sharma as Rukhsana, delivers a strong and unconventional performance.


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EntErtainmEnt

‘Dabangg 3’ will take a lot of my time: Arbaaz

Sunny welcomes sons via surrogacy

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alman Khan starrer Dabangg 3 will go on the floors in mid2018, says actor-producer Arbaaz Khan, who is geared up to let the project take a lot of his time, effort and concentration. Asked if his production banner will focus on creating content for digital platform, Arbaaz said: “As of now, my concentration is on my production and on my next film because when I involve myself in a certain project, that time I need to have

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ormer adult film star Sunny Leone, who adopted girl child Nisha in 2017, surprised everyone by announcing the birth of her sons Noah and Asher via surrogacy. Sunny took to Twitter and posted a photograph of herself along with husband Daniel Weber and their three children. “God’s plan! June 21st, 2017 was the day Daniel and I found out that we might possibly be having three children within a short amount of time. We planned and tried to have a family and after so many years are family is now complete with Asher Singh Weber, Noah Singh Weber and Nisha Kaur Weber,” Sunny captioned it.

some time for and I personally get involved in it. “So, after making my upcoming film, I do have plans to create content on digital platform — be it with a web series or short films... The options are pretty much open. As a producer, it is a wide spectrum of things that I want to do and for now, I am concentrating on Dabangg 3 which will go on floors mid this year. After that I will have more time because Dabangg 3 will take lot of my time, effort and concentration.”

Aishwarya spreads smiles among kids

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ctress Aishwarya Rai Bachchan said she is happy to continue making a small contribution in bringing about a larger and effective change for children born with clefts. Aishwarya is the global goodwill ambassador of “Smile Train”, an international cleft charity. It celebrated the completion of 500,000 free cleft lip and palate reconstructive surgeries for children born with clefts within 18 years of starting its India program. “I am proud to be associated with ‘Smile Train’ for all these years and extend my heartfelt congratulations to them for changing the lives of half a million cleft patients in India.” she said.

‘Ayushmann over Rajkummar’

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ctress Bhumi Pednekar finds her Dum Laga Ke Haisha costar Ayushmann Khurrana more talented than National Award-winning actor Rajkummar Rao. During an appearance on the Colors Infinity show “BFFs with Vogue”, Bhumi was asked to choose between Ayushmann and Rajkummar on the basis of talent, read a statement. She said: “Ayushmann is better than Rajkummar.” Ayushmann also took a dig at his contemporary actor by saying Rajkummar should hire a new stylist.

Richa Chadha to play Shakeela

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John begins shooting for ‘SMJ’

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ilmmaker Milap Zaveri along with actor John Abraham have started shooting for their upcoming film SMJ. Zaveri took to Twitter, where he shared a photograph of himself along with John holding the film’s clapboard. “And we roll! SMJ mahurat shot done! Thank you John Abraham, Manoj Bajpayee, Nikkhil Advani, Monisha Advani, Madhu Bhojwani and Bhushan sir,” Zaveri captioned the image.

ctress Richa Chadha has been roped in to play the lead role in a biopic on Shakeela, a 1990s’ actress from Kerala who acted in several adult films in languages like Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada. The biopic will tell the tale of Shakeela from when she entered the film business at the age of 16 and traces her life journey from there. Shakeela became a popular figure in the film business at a time popularity was only for the men in the industry dominated by them. “The film is the story of Shakeela, one of the most famous actors from Malayalam cinema from the 1990s who rose to a spectacular amount of fame” Richa’s spokesperson said in a statement.

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community news/midwest Cloud 9 to present Ilaiyaraja concert 2

FRIDAY,09 MARCH, 2018

Elderly man robbed on train platform

BY A STAFF WRITER HICAGO, IL: South Indian film music lovers in the United States are in for a rare treat when Cloud 9 Events presents legendary music composer Ilaiyaraja in a music concert on March 24. Cloud 9 Events, a Chicago-based event organizing company, has dreamed up the unique music concert at Naperville yard sports complex in coordination with Kalalaya, USA who are national promoters. Another local organization, RR International presented by Raghu and Murugesh is also actively involved in promoting the event featuring the 74-yearold ace musician who has composed some 6,500 songs and scored music for 1,000 films, including Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada and Hindi. The Cloud 9 team comprising Ramana Abbaraju, Sudhir Velpula and Gopi Pittala said it was very excited to present this event to South Indian film music lovers, especially Tamil and Telugu origin. Awarded Padma Bhushan in 2010 and the Centenary Award for Lifetime Achievement at the International Film Festival of India in 2015, Ilaiyaraaja was earlier this year honored with Padma Vibhushan, the second-highest civilian award by he government of India. Holding an iconic status in the Tamil

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film music industry, he won the National Award for Best Music Direction thrice (1984, 1986, 1989) and Best Background Score twice (2009, 2016). On February 16, 2013, Ilaiyaraja, who rarely performs live, made his first appearance in North America performing at the Rogers Centre in Toronto, Canada. He also performed at the Prudential Center Newark, New Jersey on February 23, 2013 and at the HP Pavilion at San Jose on March 1, 2013. After his North America tour he made a live performance in London on August 24, 2013, along with Kamal Hasan and his two sons. Ilaiyaraaja and his team performed

live again in North America in 2016 at San Jose, Seattle, Dallas, Atlanta and New Jersey. Ilaiyaraaja’s music is characterised by the use of an orchestration technique that is a synthesis of Western and Indian instruments and musical modes. He uses electronic music technology that integrates synthesizers, electric guitars and keyboards, drum machines, rhythm boxes and Musical Instrument Digital Interface with large orchestras. His concert features traditional instruments such as veena, venu, nadaswaram, dholak, mrindagam and tabla as well as Western lead instruments such as saxophones and flutes.

Grand wedding expo by Pearl Banquets BY A STAFF WRITER HICAGO, IL -- With a view to getting an amicable solution and make life easier for anxious and apprehensive parents of bride and groom entering the wedlock, the 3rd South Asian Wedding Expo was organized by Pearl Banquets on February 25 at Pearl Banquets, 1490 West Lake Street, Roselle, IL. It was planned and co-ordinated to accommodate every aspect of planning a wedding with various stalls specializing in numerous wedding services. It also featured about 80 different food items, including a variety of drinks and starters, and complimentary food testing which enabled attendees to see what dishes and drinks are available at Pearl Banquets and how they taste. There were sitting arrangements, too, befitting buffet-type dinner/lunch with agile staff demonstrating how efficiently catering can be done. The founder of Originally India House and now Pearl Banquets, Jagmohan Jayara has always served the community with classical and contemporary dishes of food that touch their soul and bring to life the Indian culture. There were almost 50 different vendors who had stalls in the exhibition hall, once again making it easy for parents, relatives and friends of the bride and groom to make their choices and selections. Most of the attendees were invited guests who were in different stages of planning wedding of their prospective brides and grooms. Some 500 guests who flocked to this event. Jagmohan opened Pearl Banquets in Roselle IL over 3 years ago. An overwhelming response from the community has encouraged him to open 3 more eateries and banquet locations in Oakbrook, Buffalo Grove and Downtown Chicago. His newest creation is Bombay

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BY A STAFF WRITER man was assaulted and robbed while waiting for a CTA Blue line train early on March 6 in The Loop. The 70-year-old man was on the Blue line train platform when an unknown male approached and asked to see the man’s ID, claiming to be an undercover police officer at 2:57 am in the first block of S. Dearborn. The Chicago police said that when the man took out his wallet, the male attempted to grab it from him. When the man resisted, the male punched him in the eye and ran away. The elderly man was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital where his condition has been stabilized.

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Indian among 10 docs in jam for pill-pushing BY A STAFF WRITER HARLESTON, W.VA. -Ten doctors, including an Indian American physician, have been charged with overprescribing pain pills from clinics in West Virginia and Virginia, leaving two patients dead. Most of the 69-count indictment charges the owners, managers and physicians associated with Hope Clinic with conspiracy to distribute oxycodone and other controlled substances that weren’t for legitimate medical purposes from 2010 to 2015. Hope Clinic had offices in Beckley, Beaver and Charleston, W.Va.; and Wytheville, Va. The indictment said the defendants allegedly laundered drug proceeds by paying bonuses to physicians and employees of a patient screening firm to encourage prescribing opioids. It said the owners knew customers were drug addicts, adding some customers were prescribed more than 2,000 prescription pills over a one-year period. One of the physicians, Sanjay Mehta, was charged with distributing a controlled substance that caused the deaths of two patients in 2013. And in a related case, another physician was charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering in a federal information document, which signals a defendant is cooperating. Thirteen people were charged overall. The charges for the various defendants carry maximum penalties ranging from 20 to 340 years upon conviction. The indictment is the result of a four-year investigation by nearly a dozen federal, state and local agencies.

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Chopstick, featuring Indo-Chinese Cuisine. South Asian Wedding Expo was an amazing experience. It was a one-stop shop that brought together various wedding vendors under one roof. It was attended by brides, grooms and their families as well as many other people. It featured fashion shows and food tastings from wedding caterers. As an online Sari Rental Boutique, it was a great opportunity to network with other wedding vendors as well as reach out to brides and grooms via the South Asian Wedding Expo. Saris and Things was also a fabulous online boutique. There were various vendors who exhibited their products/services at the expo. The participating vendors included Abc

Limousine, Andaaz jewelry, Anisha Creations, Artistic, Arya Sounds, Ashu Cards, Ashutosh Sales Inc, Bandhan Rentals, Bombay Styles, Champagn Limosine, Doll’s Salon & spa, Dream Events, Emrace Earth Oils, Escape Entertainment, Holiday Inn, JD Events, Joshua, Maharaja Farm, Plush Event Planning, Poonam creations, Premeir Design, Ramis Mandap, Sabs, St J Y, The baking Institute, The Great Recyclery, Waterford Conference Center and Yanini Design Once again, the South Asian Wedding Expo was a grand success. Gulya Kadyrova, general manager of Pearl Banquets & Conference Center did an excellent job for vendors and public to make their visit more enjoyable and memorable.


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community news/midwest FRIDAY,09 MARCH, 2018

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Dr. Sapan Shah in Republican race BY A STAFF WRITER HICAGO, IL -- A Libertyville physician and entrepreneur has declared his candidacy in the Republican primary for Illinois’ 10th Congressional District, which is currently represented in D.C. by Deerfield Democrat Brad Schneider. Announcing his campaign on March 6, Dr. Sapan Shah said he intends to focus on three primary policy areas: taxes and spending, the healthcare crisis and “championing the role of citizen legislators as intended by our nation’s founders.” Shah was born in Waukegan 1980 to Indian immigrants. His father Suresh Shah came to Waukegan, IL from Halol, Gujarat, and met and married Rohini Shah in the US. The family moved to Little Rock, Arkansas, where Sapan excelled in school, graduating valedictorian of his high school and getting several opportunities to perform research at Harvard Medical School. Sapan was accepted into a prestigious direct medical program at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, where he graduated magna cum laude in just two years. He went on to earn his law degree in two years and his medical degree in four. Sapan met his future wife, Rachna, when they were nineteen. They attended undergrad and medical school together. They were married in 2005 and moved back home to Chicago soon thereafter. Rachna went on to practice medicine, completing

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Dr. Sapan Shah

her Internal Medicine residency at Evanston North Shore Hospital and her Allergy & Immunology fellowship at Northwestern, while Sapan pursued his entrepreneurial passion. Dr Shah is the president and founding partner of a malpractice insurance brokerage in Chicago providing insurance and risk management solutions for more than 800 doctors. He said it has given him the chance to see the problems with the healthcare system up close. Dr. Shah is fighting for term limits to put the American people back in charge of their government. He believes that government should be run by citizen

legislator, nor professional, career politicians. “That’s what our founding fathers had in mind, and the further we stray from this vision, the more dysfunctional our politics become. Our elected officials need to remember that they are elected to serve us, not their own ambitions or the desires of special interests,” he says. “We need more regular people in congress. People who serve for a short period of time and come back home to their regular lives. People with no vested interest in the position and no desire to accumulate power and wealth on the backs of taxpayers. By sending such people to Congress, we end the partisan gridlock in Washington and finally

get things done for the people. Dr. Shah has committed to serving a maximum for six years, and has signed the term limits pledge. He will champion term limits, ending the reign of career politicians and entrenched interests and putting the people back in charge of their government. “If you’re a bear, you can keep sleeping. But if you’re a homeowner, now is the time to get stuff done,” points out Dr Shah. Having founded his business in 2007, he intends to improve the economy by supporting job creators and cutting spending and taxes. Reducing taxes on businesses and individuals, Dr Shah said, will “energize our economy and create better-paying jobs for the hard-working people of the 10th District.” As for his emphasis on citizen lawmakers, Dr Shah said he intends to run serve in congress for a maximum of six years, during which he will support implementing term limits. He called on his opponents to sign a term limit pledge, none of them responded to questions about the pledge. In May, another Republican, Jeremy Wynes, announced he was also running for the seat formerly held by Robert Dold, which includes much of northeastern Lake County. “Stand with Dr. Sapan Shah for term limits and end the reign of entrenched politicians. Bring common Sense to Washington, “ appeal his supporters.

No relief for Indian facing honor killing

Ilayaraja Live In Concert Chicago on Sat March 24- 6:00 PM at Naperville Yard Indoor Sports Complex, 1607 Legacy Circle, Naperville, IL 60563 Tkts: $99, $149, $249, $499 (Meet & Greet with Illayaraja). Call: Chinmaya Mission Chicago present The Ravi Shankar Quartet on Sat April 21- 6:00 PM at Yellow Box Theater, 1635 Emerson Ln, Naperville, IL 60540. Tkts: $50, $75 & VIP $100. Call: Suresh Kumar 630-362-0104

Meet and Greet with Ilayaraja and Team on Fri March 23rs-7:00 pm at Meadows Club, 2850 w. golf road, Rolling Meadows, IL 60008. Tkts: Adults $75, Kids (4-12) $50. Call: 224-547-9796

Sahil & L.A.TAN organize Atif Aslam and Neha Kakkar Live Concert in Chicago on Fri April 27th8:30 PM at Sears Center Arena, 5333 Prairie Stone Parkway, Hoffman Estates, IL 60192. Tkts: $39, $49, $59, $69, $99, $150, VIP $250, VVIP $350, Red Carpet $500. Call Nick Patel 773-507-7333 or Bhavesh Patel 773-262-1222 Amit Tandon Stand Up Live in St. Louis on Sun April 29th6:00 PM at the Sun Theater, 3625 Grandel Square, St. Louis, MO 63108. Tkts: $25, $35, $40, $50, $60. VIP $75. Call: Siva @ 201-777-0760

Ugadi And Sri Rama Navami Clebrations on Sat April 7th- 2:00 PM at Hindu Temple Sama Rathi Auditorium, 10915 Rd, Lemont, IL 60439

BY A STAFF WRITER LINT, MI -- A judge in Flint, Mich., on February 21 denied an Indian worker’s request to withdraw his guilty plea for his role in a stamp fraud scheme. Jatwinder Singh asked for the withdrawal, saying he would be targeted for an honor killing if he were deported back to India following his conviction. Singh had pleaded guilty in aiding the $1.3-million stamp fraud scheme in April 2017 under the assumption he would be allowed to stay in the US, though immigration court ruled otherwise. Judge Linda Parker in Flint US District Court sentenced Singh to time served and ordered him to pay $81,197 in restitution for conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Should the former Flint liquor store employee be deported, his attorney said he will be killed by his wife’s family. According to Stout’s filing, Singh fled to the US from India in 2008 after being targeted by his wife’s family for an “honor killing” – a killing carried out on one who is accused of bringing shame to their family. Because Singh’s wife was of a different culture

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than his, the pair was not permitted by the family to marry, the court filing states. When Singh proposed to the woman, she was beaten by her father and Singh was threatened with death. In 2008, the couple obtained US visas and lived in New York City for nearly seven years before moving to Flint with their two children aged 6 and 8 for work in 2014. While working at the Paradise Liquor House on Fleming Road in Flint, Singh allowed his visa to expire and no longer has legal status in the US. Alongside Lakhbir “Lucky” Chahal and Tony “Paco” Price, Singh pleaded guilty to a single charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud before Flint US District Judge Linda Parker in April 2017. In July, Parker sentenced Chahal–the owner of both Liquor Plus and Paradise House and accused ringleader in the scheme–to spend between 3.5 and 4.5 years behind bars, while Price was put on probation for 1.75 to 2.25 years. Singh has not yet been sentenced. Singh worked for Chahal at Paradise Liquor from February to October 2015. During that time, Singh reportedly bought Bridge Cards from beneficiaries of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.


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FRIDAY,09 MARCH, 2018

Raghu Bharathur and his cavernous new integrated sport facility Play N Thrive

BY MAYANK CHHAYA CHAUMBURG, IL : Raghu Bharathur permits himself a smile of partial triumph as he surveys his cavernous 41,000 square feet integrated sport facility here. Although still a work in progress, parts of Play N Thrive are already buzzing with badminton players and cricketers on its slickly appointed courts and nets. When it is fully ready in the coming few weeks Play N Thrive will be a unique indoor integrated facility featuring at least seven sport courts and cages, a yoga studio, a gym, a children’s center, a party/recital/ banquet Hall, sports goods and other shops as well as a café. For starters, cricket, badminton,pickleball and table tennis are already up and running. Basketball, baseball andFutsal (indoor soccer) will be available soon. “My vision is that families can come here and find exciting activities to engage in for the entire day. It is an ideal combination of fitness and fun. We offer a safe, familyfriendly environment under one roof,” Bharathur says. Play N Thrive had its soft opening about a month ago and it has already begun to attract considerable footfall. When Hi India visited it on a Sunday, each of its badminton courts and cricket pitches was packed with individual players and teams. What was once an industrial unit on Remington Road is now a brightly lit, professionally floored and equipped sport facility with sounds of the willow hitting the leather balls in one corner and sharp swishing of shuttlecocks

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flying hard across nets in another. The atmosphere is one of joyous focus on the sport at hand. A dozen or so team showed up that Sunday as part of badminton tournament even as young cricketers lugged their bats, pads and gloves on their way to the cricket pitches. As medium pacers and spinners bowled, batsmen played their shots without restraint, secure that the ball will not go out of its designated area into the open public area because of the giant nets from the floor to the ceiling. On the more than half a dozen courts, badminton players, both singles and doubles, whipped their racquets with ease since the flights of their shuttlecocks were unaffected by the elements of Chicago’s notorious winter outside. Playing along parallel courts, they seemed engrossed in their games to the exclusion of the players next to them. Since the whole complex is climatecontrolled, players enjoy a particular comfort level inside. They can be down to their professional athletic wear and sharpen their skills irrespective of what the weather is outside. Play N Thrive has been Bharathur’s passion for a long time and it has taken him some formidable challenges to get here. With a background in management, Bharathur was doing rather well. He had a successful careera seasoned marketing and product management professional with experience leading initiatives in FinTech, IT and Telecom products. Bharathur graduated with an MBA from Kellogg School of Management in 2015, majoring in Entrepreneurship, Venture

Raghu Bharathur

Capital and Marketing. He decided to start his own startup after graduating from Kellogg. He quit his lucrative day job as VP of Customer Acquisitions at Citi Retail Services to start his first company, Play N Thrive. He deployed his professional skills to establish market trends for a facility like Play N Thrive and determined that an integrated sport facility this diverse had definite future. After he took the plunge in early 2017, however, Bharathur discovered how hard it is to start from scratch, particularly when it was essentially a one-man show. “From finding the right building to finding the right contractor, from getting city approvals to finance and then finding the right sourcing for all the equipment and turf and courts everything has been a steep learning curve for me,” Bharathur told Hi India.

Nik Patel gets 25 years for $179-m loan fraud BY A STAFF WRITER RLANDO, FL -- Orlando area businessman Nikesh ‘Nik’ Patel was sentenced on March 6 to 25 years in prison in a $179-million loan fraud scheme that lasted from 2010 to 2014. In handing down the sentence in Chicago, US District Judge Charles Kocoras said the scheme perpetrated by Patel was the biggest he’d seen in nearly four decades on the bench. In a stunning allegation just days before the sentencing, federal prosecutors accused Patel of engaging in a new multimilliondollar loan fraud--an additional $19 million-while he’s been on bonded release. He was originally arrested in September 2014 and had pleaded guilty in December 2016. Patel had persuaded Kocoras to let him remain free on bond because he was trying to recover money for victims of his fraud. Patel was arrested a second time on January 6 at the Gateway Kissimmee Airport. The FBI has said in court documents that he was trying to flee to Ecuador, where he sought political asylum, and planned to purchase one of the world’s rarest diamonds using $35 million in “dirty money. Patel, of Windermere, admitted in a plea agreement with prosecutors that as CEO of the Florida-based First Farmers Financial LLC, he orchestrated the sale of 26 fake loans to Milwaukee investment firm Pennant Management for $179 million and blew the

“Now that the first phase of the facility is off the ground the next steps will hopefully be easier. The next phase is to complete the whole facility with every item on my list to make Play N Thrive the most family friendly integrated indoor place of its kind in Chicago area,” he says. Bharathur believes that residents of Schaumburg, which is the fifth most desired suburb to live in America, and beyond are willing to pay if the facilities are world-class. “Also, the trick is to be diverse in your variety. People want much more than just one thing these days. At Play N Thrive, once you enter I want you to forget your other stresses for several days,” he says. Play N Thrive offers four types of memberships. There is a two-year family membership for a family of four for $1499, one-year family membership for $999, twoyear individual membership for $999 and one-year individual membership for $599. It also has the option of a monthly individual membership $59. For an extra $20 a second monthly member can be added and for another $20 two children. Although only a few weeks into its operations and only partially so, Play N Thrive already has the easy amiability of an already established place. With the introduction of the table tennis area, activities have already picked up even more. A local Maharashtra Mandal was scheduled to organize a tournament over the weekend. “I envision a time soon when the moment you enter, you leave your worldly stress at the door,” Bharathur says.

Man held for dragging cop in his vehicle

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Paris McKinley

BY A STAFF WRITER HICAGO, IL -- A man has been charged with battery for dragging a police officer in his vehicle when he drove away from a traffic stop on March 6 in the West Englewood neighborhood on the South Side. Paris McKinley, 26, was arrested about 1 am in the 6200 block of South Claremont after officers noticed a firearm in his vehicle and he tried to flee. McKinley sped off from the traffic stop but dragged a Chicago Police officer several blocks before he crashed into a building and fled on foot, the police said. Officers took him into custody and recovered a firearm from his vehicle. McKinley, a resident of southwest suburban Summit, was on parole at the time of arrest, and had three prior convictions.

C Nikesh ‘Nik’ Patel

cash on real estate investments and a lavish lifestyle for himself and his family. The government’s filings in the case also describe Patel’s lavish shopping (recurring charges at Neiman Marcus, Louis Vuitton, Armani, Hugo Boss and Ferragamo); visits to brothels in Panama; expensive stays at hotels, such as the Gaylord Palms in Kissimmee, the Four Seasons on the island of Nevis and the

Trump Ocean Club in Panama; a $19,000 bill for a charter flight to Chicago for a court hearing in his criminal case; and a $30,000 tab for his daughter’s birthday party in 2017 at the Four Seasons hotel in Orlando. Patel had bought five hotels with the fraud proceeds through another Orlando company, Alena Hospitality.

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FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2018

community news/ east coast FRIDAY,09 MARCH, 2018

27 5

Early Voting begins at 51 Chicago sites

BY A STAFF WRITER CHICAGO, IL -- Early Voting for Illinois primary elections began on March 5 at 51 locations in Chicago, and each site also will offer voter registration. Races on the ballot for the March 20 primary include for Illinois governor, attorney general, secretary of state, treasurer, and comptroller; Cook County’s board of commissioners, board president, assessor, clerk, and treasurer; along with all of the state’s Congressional seats, all 118 Illinois House seats, and 39 of the 59 Illinois Senate seats. The Illinois primary election on March 20 will determine the Republican and Democratic nominees who will appear on the November general election ballot. Every site will be open Monday through Saturday, 9 am. to 5 pm., and Sundays from 10 am to 4 pm through March 19. Early Voting also will be offered on March 14 through March 16 at Northeastern Illinois University, the University of Illinois at Chicago, and Chicago State University. Voters don’t need a reason or excuse to use Early Voting. Chicago voters may use any early voting site in the city, regardless of where they live. Voters who need to a file name or address change, or who need to register for the first time, will need to present two forms of ID, at least one of which shows the voter’s current address. Voters who register or file a name or address change must be ready to vote during that same visit. “For voters who have their minds made up, early voting means the flexibility to cast your ballot when and where you want without worrying about a scheduling conflict on Election Day,” said Election Board chairwoman Marisel Hernandez. For more information, Chicago voters may visit chicagoelections.com. Every Chicago voter also will receive a mailing, which provides the Election Day polling place for that voter’s address, information on Voting By Mail and at least two Early Voting sites. Hours for all 51 Early Voting & Registration locations:

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Mon., March 5 - Sat., March 10: 9 am-5 pm Sun., March 11: 10 am-4 pm Mon., March 12 - Fri., March 16: 9 am-7 Sat., March 17: 9 am-5 pm Sun., March 18: 10 am-4 pm Mon., March 19: 9 am-5 pm Locations: Loop Super Site (new location) 16 W Adams

(March 19: this site opens until 7 p.m.) Ward 1 Goldblatt’s Bldg 1615 W Chicago Ward 2 Near North Library 310 W Division Ward 3 Hall Branch Library 4801 S Michigan Ward 4 King Community Ctr. 4314 S Cottage Grove (March 19: this site open thru 7 pm.) Ward 5 Jackson Park 6401 S Stony Island Ward 6 Dist. 3 Police Station 7040 S Cottage Grove Ward 7 Jeffrey Manor Library 2401 E 100th St Ward 8 Olive Harvey College 10001 S Woodlawn Ward 9 Palmer Park 201 E 111th St Ward 10 Vodak/Eastside Library 3710 E 106th St Ward 11 Dist. 9 Police Station 3120 S Halsted Ward 12 McKinley Park 2210 W Pershing Ward 13 West Lawn Park 4233 W 65th St Ward 14 Archer Heights Library 5055 S Archer Ward 15 Gage Park 2411 W 55th St Ward 16 Lindbloom Park 6054 S Damen Ward 17 Thurgood Marshall Library 7506 S Racine Ward 18 Wrightwood Ashburn Library 8530 S Kedzie Ward 19 Mount Greenwood Park 3721 W 111th St (March 19: this site open thru 7 pm.) Ward 20 Bessie Coleman Library 731 E

63rd St Ward 21 Foster Park 1440 W 84th St Ward 22 Toman Library 2708 S Pulaski Ward 23 Clearing Branch Library 6423 W 63rd Pl Ward 24 St. Agatha Parish 3147 W Douglas Blvd Ward 25 Chinatown Library 2100 S Wentworth Ward 26 Humboldt Pk Library 1605 N Troy Ward 27 Union Park 1501 W Randolph Ward 28 W. Side Learning Ctr 4624 W Madison (March 19: this site open thru 7 pm.) Ward 29 Amundsen Park 6200 W Bloomingdale Ward 30 Kilbourn Park 3501 N Kilbourn Ward 31 Portage Cragin Library 5108 W Belmont Ward 32 Bucktown-Wicker Park Library 1701 N Milwaukee Ward 33 McFetridge Sports Ctr 3843 N California Ward 34 W Pullman Library 830 W 119th Ward 35 NEIU El Centro 3390 N Avondale Ward 36 West Belmont Library 3104 N Narragansett Ward 37 West Chicago Av Library 4856 W Chicago Ward 38 Hiawatha Park 8029 W Forest Preserve Ward 39 North Park Vill. Admin. 5801 N Pulaski Ward 40 Budlong Woods Library 5630 N

Lincoln Ward 41 Roden Library 6083 N Northwest Highway (March 19: this site open thru 7 pm.) Ward 42 Museum/Brdcst Communications 360 N State Ward 43 Lincoln Park Library 1150 W Fullerton Ward 44 John Merlo Library 644 W Belmont Ward 45 Dist. 16 Police Station 5151 N Milwaukee Ward 46 Truman College 1145 W Wilson Ward 47 Welles Park 2333 W Sunnyside (March 19: this site open thru 7 pm.) Ward 48 Edgewater Library 6000 N Broadway Ward 49 Pottawattomie Park 7340 N Rogers Ward 50 Warren Park 6601 N Western Early Voting on University Campuses: University of Illinois at Chicago Student Center East 750 South Halsted Street March 14-16: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Chicago State University Cordell Reed Student Union Building 9501 South M L King Jr. Drive March 14-16: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Northeastern Illinois University Student Union Building – Basement Lunch Room 5500 North St. Louis Street March 14-16: 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Govt alert against fraudulent callers BY A STAFF WRITER ASHINGTON, DC -The Indian Embassy in Washington, D.C., has issued an advisory warning people to be watchful of suspicious phone calls in which the caller appears to be representing the Indian embassy. The embassy said its telephone lines have been spoofed by fraudsters in the US to cheat people for money. “It has been brought to the notice of the embassy that some fraudsters are spoofing Embassy of India telephone lines to make calls aimed at cheating people,” reads the advisory issued by the embassy. “Some of these calls are shown as being from the embassy

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telephone numbers (202939-7000) while others simply use embassy identity.” These fraudsters, it said, “either seek

personal information like credit card details etc. or try to extort money from Indian nationals by inter alia claiming that there are errors in their passports, visa forms, and immigration forms,” among others, which could be rectified by paying money, and at the same time warning that the so called errors, “if not rectified, could result in deportation of the individual to India or their imprisonment in the U.S.” In some cases, explains the embassy, these fraudsters have also falsely claimed that they received such privileged information from the embassy or other authorities in India. Visa applicants, it said, have also received such calls purporting to be from the embassy.

In its advisory, the Indian embassy said that none of its officials make any telephone calls seeking personal information from any Indian or foreign nationals. In case any additional documentation is required from an existing applicant, it is sought only through email(s) originating from the email domain: “@mea.gov.in.” The embassy has urged the public to not entertain any suspicious telephone calls made in the name of Embassy of India. It also advised people to not reveal any personal information or transfer any money in response to such calls. Anyone who receives such calls, should bring it to the notice of the embassy at the email id: cons1.washington(at)mea.gov.in, it said.

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community news/ east coast 2

FRIDAY,09 MARCH, 2018

Project RISHI event targets youngsters

Indian is first CTO of art museum

Manish Engineer

BY A STAFF WRITER EATTLE, WA -- Indian American executive Manish Engineer has been hired by the Seattle Art Museum as its first chief technology officer. In this newly-created position, he will oversee technology and digital efforts in order to amplify the museum’s mission and improve business operations. “As our first CTO, Manish will lead the museum to greater levels of engagement with exciting new technologies in support of SAM’s mission to connect art to life,” Kimerly Rorschach, Illsley Ball Nordstrom director and CEO, said in a statement. Previously, Engineer worked at The Museum of Modern Art as a project director in the membership and development departments. He also worked as MoMA’s IT associate director of applications, overseeing their financial systems, internal mobile point of sale app, and e-commerce platform, along with several other museum applications and databases. Engineer holds a master’s degree in contemporary art from Sotheby’s Institute of Art, as well as an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. He received his undergraduate degree in computer science and engineering from Ohio State University.

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BY A STAFF WRITER OS ANGELES, CA -- On January 28, Project RISHI at UCLA hosted an alumni and initiatives conference at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion, where students from other Project RISHI chapters across the country, esteemed faculty from UCLA and the Chinmaya Mission gathered to discuss the organization’s work and upcoming projects. Project RISHI (Rural India Social and Health Improvement) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating and implementing sustainable projects to address social, economic and health disparities in the rural villages of India. Students from chapters at universities across California

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and in the Midwest work together to fight problems plaguing communities 8,000 miles away from them. The conference began as the audience learned the story of RISHI’s founding and its first actions taken in an effort to create change in villages on the other side of the world. RISHI is the brainchild of Dr. Eri Srivatsan, Dr. Ravi Menghani, Daniel Choi, Dr. Grant Lee and Dr. Aswin Sekar, who started the organization at the UCLA campus with a vision to effect a change in Vadamanappakkam, Srivatsan’s ancestral village in the state of Tamil Nadu. Students from U.C. Irvine, U.C. Berkeley, USC and Northwestern University gathered at the Pauley Pavilion Club to learn

from UCLA faculty speakers and alumni about how to refine their approach in tackling problems in these villages thousands of miles away. They were also able to present on their upcoming initiatives, where projects ranged from tobacco de-addiction and water purification to stimulation of women’s incomes. The conference had two keynote speakers. The first was Dr. Dallas Swendeman, co-director of the Center of Expertise on Women’s Health, Gender and Empowerment at the University of California Global Health Institute. The second speaker was Dr. Parameshwaran Mahadevan from the Chinmaya Mission, who spoke to students about dharma and how it could be applied to student life.

Fewer India students opt for US varsities

Reprieve for spouses of H-1B holders

BY A STAFF WRITER ASHINGTON, DC -- The Department of Homeland Security’s repeal of an Obamaera rule which allows spouses of H-1B visa holders to work in the US on an H-4 visa in February, will now be extended to June. According to a CNN report, the spouses of H-1B holders who are waiting for green cards are eligible to work in the US on H-4 visas, a rule which was introduced by President Barack Obama’s administration in 2015. However, the Department of Homeland Security stated in a court filing this week that in January the US Citizenship and Immigration Services had determined that “significant revisions to the draft proposal were necessary that required a new economic analysis” which would take several more weeks to perform. The update on the repeal is in response to a lawsuit filed in April 2015 by a group called Save Jobs USA who argued that the repeal threatens American jobs. The delay will provide temporarily relief to a lot of H-4 visa holders who are currently working in the US. The number of overall H-4 visas has been steadily increasing in recent years, with the majority being issued to Indian Americans. At least 131,051 new H-4 visas were given out in 2016 whereas only 80,015 were given out in 2012. Before the Obama-era rule, H-4 visa holders weren’t allowed to earn an income or have a Social Security Number.

W BY A STAFF WRITER ASHINGTON, DC -- Due to the harsh immigration laws that President Donald Trump’s administration has been putting into force, the number of Indian students enrolling for graduatelevel programs in computer science and engineering in the US has declined by 21 percent or about 18,590 people in 2017 compared to the previous year. According to a recent report by the National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP), the overall number of undergraduate international students has fallen 4 percent in 2017.

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“Indian graduate students completing degrees in science and engineering at American universities are a major source of talent for American companies,” the report stated, adding that if this trend continues, it could have a negative impact on students, universities, companies and the American economy. “The US government policy, such as the Trump administration’s announced plans to restrict the ability of international students to work after graduation, could accelerate any negative trends,” the report continued. According to Quartz India, international students make up a large population of the students at most American universities,

especially in tech fields. “At many US universities, both majors and graduate programs could not be maintained without international students,” the NFAP stated in a report dated October 2017. The Trump administration’s shield against immigration has become a major concern for Indian students and professionals, while it has not restricted Indians from getting a US visa, it has still created a problem as the small steps which need to be taken has made the process hard for immigrant workers. Many Indians have even given up their dreams for a high-paying job in the US and have stayed in India over the last year.

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FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2018

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community news/ east coast FRIDAY,09 MARCH, 2018

Indian toddler crushed to death at shoe store BY A STAFF WRITER IVERDALE, GA -- A 2-year-old Indian American girl died on March 2 night after a mirror fell on top of her at a Payless ShoeSource store in Riverdale, Georgia. Ifrah Siddique and her mother had gone shoe shopping for the little angel when an unsecured mirror fell on her. Siddique’s family is now devastated that their little girl is no more and questioning how just a simple shopping trip ended on being the last day of her life. “You wouldn’t really expect it. We are all in the state of shock,” said Aqib Iftkhar, a cousin of Siddique’s. La Tisha Tultaick, who works next door to the Payless store, told reporters that she heard screams and tried to help but emergency personnel asked her to step back. “I just saw blood and the little girl, but she was just lying there lifeless,” she said. The little girl was then taken to a local hospital where she later died of internal

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Hiral Tipirneni wins Arizona primary

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Toddler Ifrah Siddique

bleeding and blood loss. The company released a statement saying, “Our deepest sympathies go out to the family of Ifrah Siddique during this time of incredible loss. We are devastated by this tragic event and

are fully cooperating with authorities to research and understand the nature of this accident.” Iftkhar responded, “at least they are fixing it, but still the question is: Why wasn’t it secured in the first place?”

Indian doctor takes on consulate: OCI card BY A STAFF WRITER OUSTON, TX – An Indian American physician Dr. Christo Thomas Philip is filing a fresh petition in the Delhi High Court for his OCI card which was cancelled by the Indian Consulate in Houston, Texas last year, for alleged missionary activities in Bihar leading to unrest and law-and-order problems. According to a media report, Philip, a medical doctor specializing in emergency medicine, was volunteering with Duncan Hospital at Raxaul in Bihar from January 2014 until April 26, 2016, when he was allegedly “unlawfully deported” from IGI Airport in Delhi. According to his plea, while his wife and children were allowed to go through immigration, he was put in detention at the airport and then sent back to Istanbul in Turkey through where his flight from Spain had arrived. In Istanbul, he was kept in a cell with 25 other people for 24 hours, after which he was

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sent to Spain where again he was escorted out by the police and was not given any reason for his deportation. His plea states that he was “deprived of his dignity and treated in an inhumane manner at the detention centre in Delhi and Istanbul in gross violation of his fundamental right to life and liberty.” Philip has also challenged the consulate’s decision as well as the ‘look-out circular’

issued against him, which he was unaware of until 2016 and has sought permission from the court to visit his family in Kerala. According to reports, Philip was born in Kerala in June 1982 and was granted the OCI status and a lifelong visa in November 2012. The Delhi High court has issued a notice to the Indian Consulate in Houston and sought a response before the next hearing on July 18.

UPCOMING EVENTS in the East Coast area

NYC Holi in The City on Sat March 17th12:00 PM at Stage 48, 605 W 48th St, New York, NY 10036

Urban Desi Conference -Concert 2018 on Thurs March 29th- 7:00 PM at New York University, New York, NY 10007. GA & VIP Passes on sale on www.UrbanDesi.org

Sikh’s of NY & Desi NYC organize Turban Day 2018 - Times Square - A Vaisakhi Celebration on Sat April 7th10:00 AM at Times Square, Manhattan, New York, NY 10036

Hiral Tipirneni

BY A STAFF WRITER UCSON, AZ -- Hiral Tipirneni, an Indian American physician who last year began her focus on running for Congress, won the February 27 special election Democratic primary for Arizona’s 8th Congressional District. Tipirneni tallied 21,703 votes for 59.6 percent in easily defeating Brianna Westbrook who earned 14,701 votes for 40.4 percent but trailed by 7,002 votes. On the Republican side of the primary, Debbie Lesko won the packed, 12-candidate race with 25,508 votes for 35.8 percent. Phil Lovas and Steve Montenegro were the next closest to Lesko with 23.9 percent and 23.8 percent of the vote, respectively. The Indian American physician has focused her run on healthcare with a concentration on Medicare. Outside of that, she has said she would like to make sure the elderly have retirement security, and improve public education, jobs and the economy. On a broader scope, Tipirneni, who is running a campaign with a group of enthusiastic youths and retired community members, said the nation’s capital needs to become more focused on the task at hand. Tipirneni noted that the American people want things done in Washington, D.C., and they deserve it. If elected, she said she would work on righting the ship. The general election is set for April 24. Win or lose, the seat will be up for election again later this year, with the primary to be held August 28 and the general November 6.

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Holi Phagwah Parade 2018 on Sat April 14th- 11:00 AM at Sybils Bakery and Restaurant, Liberty Avenue, Jamaica, NY 11419

Zakir Hussain with Rakesh Chaurasia Live in Concert on Thurs March 22nd- 7:30 PM at Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, New York, NY

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health

Type-2 diabetes subgroups identified

Diabetes is currently divided into two major groups — Type-1 diabetes which accounts for around 10 per cent of the cases and Type-2 diabetes which accounts for 85-90 per cent of the cases IANS, LONDON

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eople suffering from diabetes can be divided into five separate groups, not just two, as commonly thought, says a new study. Diabetes is currently divided into two major groups — Type-1 diabetes which accounts for around 10 per cent of the cases and Type-2 diabetes which accounts for 85-90 per cent of the cases. Type-1 diabetes, which generally develops in childhood, is an autoimmune condition where the pancreas produces little or no insulin. In Type-2 diabetes, the body does not use the hormone insulin well and is unable to keep blood sugar at normal levels. The new study, published in the journal The Lancet Diabetes and

betes,” said Leif Groop, Professor at Lund University in Sweden. Today, about 425 million people around the world have diabetes. By 2045, the number is expected to increase to 629 million. Since 2008, the researchers have monitored around 13,700 newly diagnosed patients While in Type-1 between the ages 18 and diabetes pancreas 97. produces little or By comno insulin, in bining meas u re m en t s Type-2, our body of, for examdoes not use Today, about 425 million people around the world have diabetes. ple, insulin By 2045, the number is expected to increase to 629 million. insulin aptly resistance, insulin Endocrinology, suggests that Type-2 covering all newly secretion, blood diabetes actually consists of several diagnosed diabetics in southern sugar levels and age at onset of Sweden. subgroups. illness, the researchers were able to “This is the first step towards distinguish five distinct clusters. These findings are based on initial results of ANDIS — a study personalized treatment of diaGroup 1, the severe autoim-

A little weed may not harm your kidneys Antibiotics can affect cancer treatment NEW YORK: Long-term antibiotic overuse or misuse may make people drug resistant and vulnerable to infection, impacting cancer treatment efficacy in a negative way, new research suggests. Antibiotic use is known to have a near-immediate impact on our gut microbiota and any negative impact of antibiotics on cancer treatment appears to go back to the gut and to whether the microbiota is needed to help activate the T cells driving treatment response, said Gang Zhou from Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University in the US. Immune cells like T cells recognize the abnormal proteins often present on cancer cells and infiltrate to attack the tumor. However, as the tumor grows, it often devises ways to suppress the activity of the T cells. “It likely depends on what types of therapy physicians are giving to patients and how often they also are giving them antibiotics,” said Zhou, corresponding author of the study in the journal Oncotarget. Infections are typically the biggest complication of chemotherapy, and antibiotics are commonly prescribed to prevent and treat them. — IANS

IANS, NEW YORK

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ccasional and relatively light use of marijuana may not increase risk of kidney disease in healthy adults below the age of 60, suggests new research. The study, published in The American Journal of Medicine, found no association between current or previous marijuana use and kidney function. “Our research provides some reassuring evidence suggesting that there is no detrimental effect of

infrequent, relatively light use of marijuana on kidney function among healthy adults under age 60,” said lead investigator Murray Mittleman, professor of Epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “However, our research does not address heavy users, the elderly, or those with pre-existing chronic kidney disease. Research is needed to evaluate the impact of marijuana use in adults 60 and over, and among those with existing or at

mune diabetes, essentially corresponds to Type-1 diabetes and is characterized by onset at young age, poor metabolic control and impaired insulin production. Group 2, the severe insulin-deficient diabetes, includes individuals with impaired insulin secretion and moderate insulin resistance. Group 3, the severe insulin-resistant diabetes is characterized by obesity and insulin resistance. Group 4, the mild obesity-related diabetes includes obese patients who fall ill at young age. Group 5, the mild age-related diabetes is the largest group and consists of the most elderly patients. “The most insulin resistant patients (Group 3) have the most to gain from the new diagnostics as they are the ones who are currently most incorrectly treated,” Groop said.

Gene responsible for autism identified

risk of developing kidney disease,” Mittleman said. The researchers analyzed a nationally representative sample of nearly 14,000 predominantly healthy adults aged 18-59 years living in the US who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2007 to 2014.

TORONTO: Scientists have identified a gene responsible for neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism, an advance that may pave the way for developing treatments. The findings published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry showed that alterations of the gene thousand and one amino-acid kinase 2 (TAOK2) plays a direct role in these disorders. TAOK2 is located in the autism spectrum disorder and schizophrenia-associated chromosomal deletion region. —IANS

Lee bats for mandatory hearing loss screening RACHEL V . THOMAS, NEW DELHI

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early sixty per cent cases of hearing loss in children are preventable with early intervention, says former Australian cricket sensation Brett Lee, emphasizing the need to make the newborn screen test mandatory in India. Deafness, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), refers to the complete loss of hearing ability in one or both ears, while “hearing impairment” refers to both complete and partial loss of hearing ability. Nearly 360 million people, nearly one-tenth of them children, suffer from hearing loss worldwide, it says. However, “nearly 60 per cent of these could have been prevented

Brett Lee with global implantable hearing aid firm Cochlear.

from an early age if the right measures were taken early”, Lee told IANS over telephone from Australia. “Early intervention is the

most important thing for a kid to have back normal hearing. “There is an urgent need of making the ‘new-born screen test’

for hearing mandatory as well as for educating parents of children with hearing loss so that they make the best intervention at the earliest,” said Lee, who began spearheading the cause of hearing loss three years ago, in wake of an accident that temporarily impaired his son’s hearing. The former pacer is also the Global Hearing Ambassador with global implantable hearing aid firm Cochlear. According to a 2016 study published in the Indian Journal of Otolaryngology and Head & Neck Surgery, 63 million people suffer from significant auditory loss in India. Four in every 1,000 children suffer from severe to profound hearing loss.

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hi INDiA | 03.09.18 | Midwest Edition  

South Asian Views On Global News

hi INDiA | 03.09.18 | Midwest Edition  

South Asian Views On Global News