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FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 27, 2015

MIDWEST / EASTCOAST

COMMUNITY NEWS/MIDWEST 4

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 27, 2015

St Louis Gujarati Samaj marks festival of lights

About 600 Gujarati Samaj members attended Diwali celebrations.

BY MINA PATEL T LOUIS, MO -- A front-ranking ethnic organization, Gujarat Samaj of St Louis, celebrated its annual event and Diwali festival in a grand manner at Machinists Hall on November 21. Over 600 members attended the event which started with a social hour where community members wished each other Happy Diwali and Saal Mubarak. The dinner event started at 7pm with opening remarks by president Jitendra Parbhu who greeted everyone with Diwali and New Year wishes. He listed the activities that the Samaj undertook during his

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Indian pleads guilty to sexcapade with minor

BY A STAFF WRITER OLUMBIA, MD -- A Maryland man of Indian origin pled guilty to traveling across state lines for sex with a minor. Ravi Singit, 41, of Rockville, Maryland, was caught in a sting operation conducted by the FBI’s Child Exploitation Task Force. He pled guilty on November 23 in the US District Court for the District of Columbia. He is to be sentenced on February 11 by Senior Judge John D. Bates. Singit faces a statutory maximum of 30 years in prison and a potential fine of up to $250,000. He also will be required to register as a sex offender for a minimum of 15 years upon his release from prison. According to government evidence, on August 26, Singit contacted an undercover officer with the FBI’s Child Exploitation Task Force, who had posted an ad on a social network site. Over the next several days, Singit exchanged e-mail, phone, and text messages with the undercover officer, whom the defendant believed had access to an underage girl. During this time, Singit arranged with the undercover officer to meet with a view to having sex with a child. On August 31, Singit traveled from Maryland to a pre-arranged meeting place in Washington, D.C. He was arrested when he arrived at the destination.

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leadership. Thanking his executive committee, volunteers, members and everybody for the generous support that he had, he pitched for the younger generation of members to come forward and give their time for the Samaj to carry on the good work for the benefit of the community. “It is important that we here in our adopted country preserve and promote our Gujarati heritage and culture for upcoming generations,” he said. This year’s big achievement was that the Gujarati Samaj had donated $ 250,000 to Hindu Temple of St. Louis to help build

The selfless torch-bearers of the Gujarati Samaj St Louis

a community center and also committed itself to helping the temple raise additional funds and assured another $50,000 upon occupying the building. Both parties have signed a lease of 99 years. The community center will have a kitchen and large hall with stage and classrooms in 8000 to 10000 square foot area. Gujarati Samaj will be able to host Navratri and other events at this community center. Bal Vihar of St. Louis is also part of this project The new center is being built for other organizations within the community. Having a center next to the temple will also help the

families to leverage the opportunity to instil more culture and faith in their children. The event concluded with delicious authentic Gujarati dishes. This was followed by a live musical performance by Panorama Musical Orchestra from India. Extraordinary vocal and instrumental talents of this musical group captured and thoroughly entertained the audience for over three hours with golden oldies and new Hindi movie songs. The event was a grand success. Hema Patel said ‘”It was a great Diwali celebrations! Good food, decorations and management to serve over 600 members. Thumbs Up to whole team.”

Chicago Gandhi Samaj celebrates Diwali BY A STAFF WRITER HICAGO, IL -- Gandhi Samaj of Chicago, one of the oldest cultural organizations of Indian-Americans in the US, had the double delight of celebrating its 31st anniversary and also Diwali on November 14, 2015 at Maine East high school, 2601 west Dempster Street, Park ridge, I. It was attended by a large number of people, along with their families and friends. Ashwin Bodalia, president, Gandhi Samaj of Chicago, gave welcome speech. Dr. Ausaf Sayeed, Consul General of India in Chicago, was the Guest of Honor. Sunil Shah was the chief guest at the event, Awards was given to Dr. Ausaf Sayeed for his rich contribution in promoting India’s culture abroad, to Sunil Shah for his outstanding services to people of Asian Indian community in Chicago, to Bhumika Gandhi for her contribution as president of Gandhi Samaj of Chicago, to Rita Gandhi for her

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Gandhi Samaj of Chicago’s members & guests

exceptional services to the community, to Hitesh Gandhi for his involvement in Gandhi Samaj of Chicago and other organizations, and to Vandana Jhingan for her contribution to

Indian community in Chicago area. The cultural program included classical dance and music performances as also choicest songs.

Jayathi Murthy is Dean of top LA Engg college BY A STAFF WRITER OS ANGELES, CA -- Jayathi Murthy, chair of UT-Austin’s Cockrell School’s Department of Mechanical Engineering and holding the Ernest Cockrell, Jr. Memorial Chair in Engineering, has been named dean of the Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her appointment becomes effective from January 1, 2016. Murthy joined the Cockrell School in 2012, becoming the first woman to head the mechanical engineering department at The University of Texas at Austin. Under her leadership, the department has enjoyed top 10 rankings in each of the past three years. The Indian American educator has

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Jayathi Murthy

launched significant initiatives to expand hands-on and project-based learning opportunities and to increase female enrollment. Prior to joining UT Austin, Murthy held engineering faculty positions at Purdue University and Carnegie Mellon University. She has decades of experience in both industry and academia, with expertise in microscale heat transfer, multiscale multiphysics simulations and uncertainty quantifications, and she is the author of more than 280 technical papers and reports. Mur thy received her Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Minnesota, her master’s degree from Washington State University and a bachelor’s degree from the Indian Institute of Technology.

hi INDiA - November 27, 2015  

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