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Dead body was left for four days in a room at the Royal North Shore Hospital Shadow Minister for Health Jillian Skinner expressed her shock and horror at revelations a dead body was left for four days in a room at the Royal North Shore Hospital without being returned to the hospital morgue after a family viewing. “This is incredibly sad for all concerned – it is tragic for the family already trying to cope with the death of a loved one to be confronted by this terrible news,” Mrs Skinner said. “The Rees Labor Government’s cuts to frontline hospital staff in the last State Budget are biting hard and hardworking doctors and nurses were being placed in impossible conditions,” she said. “This

tragic case illustrates just how much pressure these dedicated health workers are under and it’s quite obvious from today’s awful news the system is really struggling to cope and it’s resulting in very serious consequences. “With six health Ministers in the past four years, the scandal ridden Rees Government is failing health workers, patients and families in New South Wales – Labor is constantly distracted and everyone is suffering as a result. “NSW is ready for a change that puts patients first and reengages with the demoralised medical professionals. “The admission that the mistake has

been made by ‘individual human error’ was a further tragic consequence of the State Government’s $205 million cuts to the Area Health Services over the next four years. “Staff are now standing up and saying enough to enough – front-line staff like those who are working so hard at the Royal North Shore Hospital need more support – not less.“Royal North Shore’s staff cut-backs and redundancies fly in the face of the Garling Inquiry’s recommendations which clearly acknowledge the key role of experienced nurses in the system and how hard they work,” Mrs Skinner said.

LABOR TO SLUG BUS COMMUTERS YET AGAIN: FARES TO INCREASE BY UP TO 15.8% Shadow Minister for Transport Gladys Berejiklian said plans to hit bus commuters with fare increases of up to 15.8% was totally unjustified due to the State Labor Government’s inability to efficiently run transport services. “The draft determination recommends metropolitan and outer metropolitan bus fares increase by an average 14.8% over a four year period, which is unacceptable given this comes on the back of a 5% increase in January,” Ms Berejiklian said. “It was only 10 months ago bus commuters in Sydney, Wollongong, Newcastle, the Central

Coast, Blue Mountains and the Hunter were hit with an on average 5.5% increase ,” she said. “It is not fair to increase fares well above inflation when commuters are forced to put up with overcrowded, unreliable and cancelled services on a daily basis. “Instead of fixing some of these long standing issues the State Labor Government’s solution is to ask commuters to pay for its own incompetence. “We should be encouraging people back onto our buses not pushing them away with bad services and higher fares. Commuters are prepared to pay for better

services but they shouldn’t be expected to keep digging deeper for nothing in return. “This fare increase is simply an insult to bus commuters who will yet again fork out more money for services that are getting worse. “A 15.8% increase over four years is simply unfair to the public who are already feeling the pinch in tough economic times. “Bus commuters continue to bear the brunt of the State Labor Government’s incompetence - more late buses, more cancellations and more complaints should not translate into higher fares,” Ms Berejiklian said.

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Bainimarama’sByCoup – A Vital Intervention! Rajendra Prasad in Auckland

Military coups against civilian Governments are viewed with contempt. It is not considered civil but a grave violation of authority and gross abuse of power. It is unacceptable that the ruled removes the ruler and usurps its power and authority. Democracy was never meant to be a victim of its own creation. It was considered to be one of

the finest creations of the human mind in the constitution of a civilian Government through the electoral process. The power rested with the people and through their votes they elected their leaders to represent their interests in the people’s Parliament with sincerity, honesty and integrity. The Constitution, in most countries, became the

founding document that embraced the will of the people and laws promulgated, subsequently by the Parliament retained consistency with its provisions. In the Pacific region Fiji was considered to be the hub and the jewel of the Pacific and it lived up to its reputation. As the hub of the Pacific, it was not only centrally located but had also assumed a domineering leadership role over other Pacific island nations. They looked upon it for leadership and Fiji never disappointed them until the first military coup of 1987. As the jewel of the Pacific, it was seen as one with well-developed social and economic infrastructures and blessed with pristine beaches and swaying coconut palms that drew people from abroad to its shores. To most, it was a smiley island where there were miles of smiles everywhere. It gave the impression that everything was hunky-dory but beneath the smiles, the venom of racism was destroying Fiji. If racism was meant to help ordinary Fijians then it was a grave misconception. It did nothing for their prosperity but accelerated their slide into the abyss of poverty. However, the proponents of racism, the Fijian leaders, supported by the chiefs, were the real beneficiaries. They sang the hymns of hate and the Methodist Church provided the choir. Collectively, a nation was defrauded of


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good governance and Indo-Fijians became the object of hate and systematic victimization and marginalization, as fear, insecurity and anxiety hounded them. Even land on which they had built houses and earned their livelihood for 3-4 generations was taken, as part of the evil process of retribution. In the aftermath, Indo-Fijians became landless, homeless and felt stateless. Their exodus from Fiji rose from a trickle to a torrent when they realized that their safe and secure future lay elsewhere. Fiji, the land of their birth, had disowned and violated them and their faith and trust in securing a better future vanished. The plan suited the Fijian aristocracy but poor landowners, later realized, to their consternation that the rental income on which many had relied ceased. Its implications were grave on their livelihood but it did not matter to their leaders, as they kept them in a trance, chanting the mantras of hate against IndoFijians. However, Indo-Fijians with their inherent traits of struggle, survival and achievement moved on, migrated or sought other means to support their livelihood. The preachers and practitioners of racism in Fiji had brought down the country and its people to its knees. Fiji was heading to be the Zimbabwe of the Pacific with land repossessions and, even worse with racism destroying the fab-

ric of democracy in Fiji. However, the military coup of 5 December 2006 stopped the peddlers of racism in their tracks. Commodore Bainimarama has taken upon the armed forces to rebuild Fiji’s rotten democracy. His mission is worthy of support and, indeed, preliminary works need to be done to build the edifice of democracy on a solid foundation. Since the Qarase Government was deposed, the Bainimarama Government has made significant achievements, which augurs well for the establishment of democracy in Fiji. In this regard, let there be no illusion that a democratically elected Government could never achieve what has been achieved thus far. This includes Great Council of Chiefs Neutralized The GCC was created by the British to advise the colonial Government on the needs, desires and aspirations of the Fijian people. It served its purpose for that era and its advent in the post-independence era greatly hindered Fijian adjustment to the democratic system, as chiefs needlessly became part of it. In 1964, a Fijian academic, Dr Rusiate Nayacakalou emphatically wrote that it was a “monstrous nonsense” for Fijians to think that they can benefit from both – traditional and democratic forms of government. Indeed, it did not help ordinary

Fijians but it certainly aided and abetted the cause of Fijian leaders who switched from one to the other, whichever suited their cause to remain in power. For example, in 1987 and 2000, they decried democracy as a “foreign flower” and trampled upon it but in 2006 when they were removed through a military coup, they wept for democracy inconsolably and asked for its restoration! Hypocrisy? It’s an understatement. Methodist Church Constrained The Methodist Church, largest church in Fiji, used the pulpit actively to preach racism and gave spiritual blessing to pursuit of Fijian nationalism. In every coup, it had used the Bible to give vent to Fijian nationalism and justification for persecution of Indo-Fijians, convincing ordinary Fijians that their mission was Godordained. They were part of the conspiracy in fomenting the coups of 1987 and 2000. The Bainimarama Government literally forced them to retreat from politics to the pulpit and stopped them from using it to deliver political sermons. Racism in Retreat Racism was a weapon of choice for the Fijian aristocracy and it caused irreparable harm to Fiji and contributed towards social, economic and political upheaval in Fiji. It was meant to help ordinary Fijians but it only served the Fijian aristocracy, who fanned the flames of racism to arouse Fijian passion

The Navtarang Lifestyle and emotions against Indo-Fijians. The Bainimarama Government has silenced the active preachers and practitioners of racism in Fiji. No democratically Government could do it, instead history bears testimony that past Governments used racism to retain their stranglehold on political power. Corruption in Control Corruption in the public and private sectors had skyrocketed and Fiji was submerging in a sea of corruption. The politicians, judiciary and civil service became tainted. The private sector merely adjusted to the predominant culture of corruption. There was no leader of substance or repute who could have reversed the trend or who showed genuine concern against it. The intervention by the Bainimarama Government jolted habitual practitioners and some have been charged for their crimes. Law Society dissolved The Fiji Law Society, a regulatory body for the law profession had gained infamy for being ineffectual in dispensing its services, as its errant members escaped punishment for their lapses. Numerous complaints lodged against its members were either ignored or shelved. It was evident that it could no longer effectively regulate the profession. Some of its senior members had publicly denounced it for its failures. The Government dissolved the institution and created its own authority to regulate the profession but it need not be discounted that the Fiji Law Society had also refused to cooperate with

Bainimarama Government, holding that it was illegal. Kava Abuse Addressed Abuse of kava in the public and private sector was so widespread that it was costing millions of dollars in lost productivity. Both young and old engaged in it and its visible deleterious effects were there for everyone to see, recognize and realize that it was spreading like cancer and choking the nation. The Parliamentarians used it as if it was the nectar that had to be consumed by them to ably dispense their democratic duties and respon-

sibilities. When they went on campaign trails they took the powdered kava with them to share with their supporters. While they savored the muddy liquid, the nation followed the leaders. The Government has


FIJI NEWS moved decisively to control its abuse and the Commissioner of Police has enforced a ban on its use, not only in the offices but also in the Police barracks. Sugar Industry being Revived Fiji’s lifeblood, the sugar industry has been teetering on the edge of collapse. Capital is needed to upgrade the aged sugar mills and massive eviction of Indo-Fijian sugarcane farmers from land leased from Fijian landowners has drastically reduced sugarcane production. The Bainimarama Government has reaffirmed its commitment to restructure and

restore the sugar industry to its former glory. Restructuring process is now in progress and hopefully the politicization of the industry will be a thing of the past and land issues resolved for the benefit of all.

Road Map Drawn The formulation of the People’s Charter is an expression of intent by the Bainimarama Government and its ideals are laudable. The road map has been drawn and people are aware of it. Many complain that 2014 for elections is unacceptable and the proposed changes to the electoral laws and re-writing of the Constitution could be achieved much earlier. It is a legitimate concern, which the Government is aware of but is not prepared to rush it until necessary groundwork is done to hold democratic elections.

Fijians Rescued As the nation receded into anarchy and Indo-Fijians used as a decoy to justify their marginalisation to remove the threat of their political dominance, the real beneficiaries were the

Fijian aristocracy and ordinary Fijians suffered economic dispossession and their plight was no better than Indo-Fijians. Their own leaders were systematically fleecing them and it required corrective action. Netani Rika, (presently editor of the Fiji Times) wrote in April 2001that the Fijian was ‘shafted’ by his own leaders but such occasional sparks from Fijian writers failed to ignite the fire of revulsion or rebellion from ordinary Fijians. Given time, and subject to accomplishment of his mission, Commodore Bainimarama may be recognized, accepted and hailed as one who saved his own Fijian community from systematic dispossession, denial and destruction by their own leaders. Nation Rescued The military took a civilian role when the civilian authority failed the nation. It is unfortunate that it has come to this and if everything goes in accordance with the road map and democracy is restored, the actions of the Fiji Military Forces in removing the Qarase Government may be viewed as an act of patriotism. Indeed, the easiest choice for them would have been to join the Fijian aristocracy and share in the spoils like the armed forces in countries like Zimbabwe. Dispassionately, Fiji’s shredded democracy had become a victim of those who had a duty to protect it. Unscrupulous, corrupt and ruthless politicians had brought down a strong, vibrant, rich and robust nation to its knees. They derived pleasure in pursuing policies and

practices that were divisive and destructive. They had corrupted democracy; disfigured and destroyed it beyond restoration. They did not deserve to remain there and their dismissal must not be looked upon as a tragedy but an opportunity. Let us hope that this singular endeavor, to re-invent Fiji’s democracy, under the leadership of Commodore Bainimarama, as Prime Minister, gives Fiji a true democracy where no one drags a chain and no one wields a sword. Let us also hope and pray that the wolves and the hyenas of Fiji politics are kept out from any future Governments and assigned to political oblivion. (Rajendra Prasad is the author of “Tears in Paradise – Suffering and Struggles of Indians in Fiji 1879-2004)


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10th October, marks the 135th anniversary of the signing of the Deed of Cession by our forefathers on the 10th of October 1874 in Levuka. This day also marks the 39th anniversary of Fiji’s independence from Great Britain on 10th October 1970. It is most appropriate that the theme for this year’s Fiji Day Celebrations is “Educating Fiji towards Change, Peace and Progress.” We should all take this opportunity to acknowledge with pride and appreciation, all those people who have individually and collectively contributed in their own way, through sheer hard work, perseverance and sacrifice, to the building of our nation. Ladies and Gentlemen, following the events of April this year, the then President His Excellency Ratu Josefa Iloilovatu Uluivuda reappointed my Government and mandated it to continue with the reforms that we had started in 2007. His Excellency had therefore mandated my Government to hold the democratic and parliamentary elections by September 2014, at the latest. I am confident that we can all work together to implement the Strategic Framework for Change and lay a more solid foundation that will help us resolve the many problems that our nations has had for far too long. The Roadmap sets out the various strategies that need to

be put in place, the agencies that will implement them, and the timelines, in accordance with the Mandate given by the President. The 11 Pillars of the People’s Charter for Change, Peace and Progress, which the majority of us had agreed to, form the guiding principles for this Roadmap. The Roadmap is aimed at developing and implementing the best political, social and economic policies we can put together under the current climate of global crisis and change, coupled with our national vision to achieve and advance, the goals of good governance, prosperity, peace and national harmony. I reemphasis the strategic priorities identified under the Roadmap. These are: •The formulation of a new Constitution; •Electoral and parliamentary reforms; •Strengthening law and justice; •Strengthening accountability and transparency; •Ensuring effective, enlightened and accountable leadership; •Enhancing public sector efficiency, effectiveness and service delivery; and •Developing an integrated development structure at divisional levels. The global economic outlook still remain uncertain. But I am encouraged by positive signals in tourism arrivals, export


growth, import substitution, investment proposals and assistance from our development partners overseas. Our foreign Reserves are now at a record high of $1.0 billion, following a critical level of only one month’s of import cover, six months ago. This of course, had been enabled through our strategic decision to devalue our currency, in addition to other prudent financial management practices. The financial assistance of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) also contributed to boosting our foreign reserves. This record level of reserves has generated more confidence in Fiji’s economy and financial systems. However, we still need to continue to implement more measures to buffer our foreign reserves. We have also developed strong bilateral links with countries outside our traditional sphere, and we are encouraged by their assistance and cooperation. In a statement issued by the Commonwealth Secretary General in relation to Fiji’s suspension as a member of the Commonwealth, my Government had noted that the Commonwealth remains committed to engaging with our Government, notwithstanding the suspension. The Government cherishes its membership of the Commonwealth. It also believes that the Commonwealth can partner with Fiji to resolve Fiji’s long

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standing systemic and structural challenges. It is in this respect that my Government had appreciated the opportunity to meet with the Special Representative of the Secretary General Sir Paul Reeves, when he visited in early September this year. Suffice to say, my Government believes that through dialogue and the understanding of Fiji’s unique and specific history, experience, colonial past, political landscape and current ground realities, the Commonwealth will be better placed to assist Fiji. The general elections in Fiji must be held, but it must be held under a constitution and an electoral system that guarantees and reflects the universally accepted principles and practical implementation of equal and common citizenry and equal suffrage. The holding of elections in itself does not guarantee sustainable democracy, nor for that matter, correct the longstanding and systemic injustices, inequalities and corruption that exists in Fiji. This is evident from the contemporary experi-

8 ences of many countries both within and outside the Commonwealth. Let me therefore reiterate, that the process and holding of elections, must be preceded by reforms, that will ensure that Fiji once and for all, gets rid of the coup culture, and has sustainable and true democracy, which excludes communal politics. Democracy must therefore be contextualized within the Fiji experience and history. I mentioned that we now have a Strategic Roadmap in place to guide us into General Elections by September 2014. I emphasized that in the next 2 years, we need to stabilize and grow the economy to set the foundation for other initiatives. We will then draw up a constitution through a consultative process by September 2013, before we can go to General Elections, the year after. The various reforms we have identified aim to achieve this, and needs to be implemented with some urgency. My Government of course, cannot do these on its own. We need the cooperation and support of all our stakeholders, and

citizens, to work together so that we can achieve our vision of better economic growth and a higher standard of living, for all our people now and for our future generations. The theme of our celebrations this year, of “Educating Fiji towards Change, Peace, and Prosperity” affords us all an opportunity, to strive forward with purpose and confidence to rebuild Fiji into a non-racial, culturally vibrant, united, wellgoverned and truly democratic nation, where the marginalized and disadvantaged in our society are uplifted, and fully participate in a modern and progressive society. On this special day, let us all reaffirm that pledge that we had all taken to make this vision a reality- “we the people of Fiji, awake and arise to a new dawn, to a new day and a new way, in our lives, as one nation, as one people, for we are the people of Fiji.” Vinaka vakalevu, Dhanybhad, and Thank You. May God continue to bless Fiji and our nation and its people.


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Fiji’s Indian population once 51% has now fallen to 32%. Karam C. Ramrakha

Karam C. Ramrakha, Consultant Worthington Williams Lawyers Level 2 ,64 Castlereagh Street Sydney NSW 2000 P: 61 2 9223 2266 F: 61 2 9223 2277 E:; also at E: Since 2006 I have made some 6 visits to Fiji. The last one was as recent as 18 September 2009. Sadly, Fiji’s Indian population once 51% has now fallen to 32%. More will flee if they can. But deep down we Indians from Fiji-born (as we used to call ourselves) will never know another home. Our children will, but not us. My life in Fiji was an intense one, as lawyer, leader, and social worker. As General Secretary of the National Federation Party and 16 years at Parliamentarian, 7 years as trade union President of the Fiji Teachers Union I travelled Fiji’s nook and cranny, conversed and had discourse with persons from all walks of life. This time I found Fiji buoyant. The Shop Proprietors proudly said to me, “Fiji is alright. No one goes to bed hungry. I know they firebombed my shop, but I told the TV people who came to interview me,’ There are good and bad in every race, but I know the Fijians have a soft spot. I am never going to leave.’” She is still there. And others in the shop concurred. A wholesaler said, “My head is no longer cluttered with politics. We used to read Rajendra Rae ranting on behalf

of a dead NFP. It was depressing. Besides who needs politicians.” My taxi driver says, “ I drive up and down, to and fro, But the tourists I drive tell me Fiji is paradise.” And Democracy, I ask. “Well, it is MYOB now. Mind Your Own (Expletive deleted) Business. Those politicians. They say elect me and we will look after you. But they look after themselves.” So finally Frank is working with a clean slate. Yes, he has sacked the Government, the Council of Chiefs, The Fiji Law Society, denied the Accountants, and his final “sacred cow” is The Methodist Church of Fiji. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that any Fijian would go so far. But Frank sees how the Fijian is kept backward in his own country while non Fijians prosper and forge ahead. Since 1874 the British virtually locked up the Fijian. He was forced to live in his village, forced to obey his Buli (Chief). He could not travel outside the village, not even to go to another village, without the consent of the Buli. As for entering into commerce. Just forget it. No Fijian could borrow more than Twenty five pounds without the written consent and author-

ity of the District Officer. Anyone who did so would find his debt “ unenforcable”. The British treated the Fijians as children, calling them Nature’s Children. At the same time they used his land, and resources for their enrichment. Australia’s Colonial Sugar Refining Company was one such benefactor, with liberal use of virtual free land, and cheap (Indian) labour. Obedience to their Chiefs was instilled in the Fijian mind. A Fijian Teachers Handbook in the thirties exhort each teacher to inform Fijian children that every White Man was to be treated as a Chief and treated accordingly. No wonder a Fijian lad once complained to me, “Mr. Ramrakha,” he said,” tradition is what others use to keep me backward. Culture is what I use to keep myself backward.” Frank, while observing culture and tradition wants the Fijian to break out of that mould. Asked about elections, he said what elections? Fijian vote according to what their Chiefs tell them. They do not think for themselves. So, as I said, Frank has got a clean slate, and now he has to deliver. He wants elections postponed till 2014. Too far, cried out Mahendra Chaudhry and

Laisenia Qarase in a joint letter to the Commonwealth Secretariat. So even Mahendra has jumped ship? Frank chides the two ex Prime Ministers, asking what they achieved during their time. Frank wants to change the pattern of voting. It is the blind vote (as I call it) which is the real enemy of democracy. In Papua New Guinea it is called One Talk.. One Talk means that you have limitless loyalty from another One Talk. Come Hell or High Water your One Talk will never leave you. That is not democracy, which depends

essentially on the Floating Voter who will turn against you if you do not deliver the goods. This time Suva looked clean, it rained and rained and rained, but the people in the street seemed content. And they have Festival of India Shows where Mahajans from Muluk (India) come with their wares, and sell in Exhibitions to the worry and dismay of the locals.. The Shop Proprieties once again, “There are 35,000 people from Labasa crammed between Suva and Nausori. You would think people have no money.

But they went to the India Show and departed with bag full of stuff. Who says people have no money.?” Amen to that and let’s hope Frank rebuilds a New Fiji where as the song goes, “ Koi bhuka na rahey, koi nanga na rahey” and pyar ke Ganga bahey.. where no one is in want and we experience a Ganges of Love. God Bless Fiji. Yes, Frank you are still under a spotlight. Australia and New Zealand and Big Brother USA let alone Great Britain they are all watching you.

DEEPAVALI 2009 MESSAGE Aum asto ma sad gamaya Tamso ma jyotir gamaya Mrityorma’ mritam gamaya. Oh Supreme Spirit! Lead us from untruth to truth. Lead us from darkness to light. Lead us from death to immortality. Deepavali, the festival of lights, is the greatest of all Hindu festivals. Where ever there are Hindus on this earth Deepavali is celebrated with great pomp. Deepavali falls on the new moon night of Kartik (October – November) each year. Feasting and merrymaking continues for two days. On this happy day of light, there is natural happiness. Light drives away darkness; likewise, knowledge drives away ignorance. As our knowledge increases and improves, our ego will also die a natural death. This is the real ideal, which gives us real wealth and happiness. Beyond the festivities, Deepavali brings the message of common brotherhood and service to mankind. A single ‘diya’ (tiny lamp) is symbolic of Deepavali in that it overpowers and suppresses darkness. The humble ‘diya’ burns itself to provide us with light. It carries no distinction among the beneficiaries of the light emitted. Symbolically each ‘diya’ will always provide as much light as it is capable of without any jealously or hatred towards each other. According to a story God distributed festivals among people. God gave Raksha Bandhan to Brahmins, Vijay Dasami to Kshatriyas, Holi to Farmers and Workers, and Deepavali to Vaiyas (Merchants). Today it is celebrated by Hindus all over the world irrespective of caste or creed. Lights of Deepavali have been symbolic of victory of forces of good over evil. It is that on Deepavali day that the founder of Arya Samaj, Swami Dayanand Saraswati left his mortal self for heavenly abode. Hence it has significance for the followers of Arya Samaj. The occasion enables the members of Arya Samaj to draw inspiration from this day and increase their confidence and capacity to drive away darkness. God bless us to see this light, to see His Light.

May Deepavali bring peace and happiness into every heart and home. The Vedic Pratinidhi Sabha and Arya Samaj of Australia wishes all readers of Navtarang a very happy Deepavali and a prosperous New Year.


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Eighty per cent of leases that restrict competition to major supermarkets Coles and Woolworths in shopping centres will

means that out of 750 active restrictive leases involving Coles and Woolworths, 602 will cease immediately,” Dr Emerson said.

be abolished today, Minister for Competition Policy and Consumer Affairs Dr Craig Emerson said. The ACCC has reached agreement with the major supermarkets to end existing restrictive provisions in supermarket leases with shopping centre owners. “Competition in groceries is good for consumers,” Dr Emerson said. “This pro-competitive agreement

“The remaining 20 per cent will be gone within five years and no restrictive provisions will be allowed in new stores.” For agreements relating to stores that have been operating for more than five years, the restrictive lease provisions will cease immediately and for newer stores, the restrictive provisions will end no later than five years from the origi-



nal date of the store opening. This ground-breaking move will open up shopping centre space for competitors such as Aldi, Franklins, Foodworks and IGA stores. The ACCC has also indicated it will also engage with other supermarket chains with a view to removing any anti-competitive provisions from their leases. “Barriers to entry in shopping centres that have restricted competition for so long to the detriment of consumers are being torn down,” Dr Emerson said. Dr Emerson today released the Rudd Government’s policy paper titled: Introducing more competition and empowering consumers in grocery retailing. In addition to abolishing restrictive lease provisions the Government is moving with states and territories to ensure planning laws do not unjustifiably restrict competition in grocery retailing. And the Government has extended the foreign policy investment timeframe for the development of vacant commercial land from 12 months to five years, enabling foreignowned supermarkets like Aldi and Costco to increase their presence in Australia. The introduction of unit pricing, which becomes mandatory for major supermarkets in December, is empowering consumers to make informed choices about the supermarket items that constitute the best value for money.


LAUNCHES HEARTLESS ATTACK ON PENSIONERS Last week, David Borger showed himself to be utterly incompetent over his bungling of the placement of a convicted paedophile; today he’s proven he’s heartless as well, Shadow Minister for Community Services Pru Goward said. It’s been revealed the Rees Labor Government will eat up a large chunk of the Commonwealth’s pension increase by raising rents for public housing tenants. “The heartless attack on the most vulnerable in our community shows how out of touch and incompetent David Borger is,” Ms Goward said. “Mr Borger’s attack on pensioners shows you how low the Rees Labor Govern-

ment is prepared to stoop,” she said. “Pensioners have been waiting years for this much-deserved increase in their payments - they shouldn’t have State Labor taking with one hand what Federal Labor gives with the other. “With the Federal Government pumping billions of dollars of stimulus money into public housing, this rental increase is impossible to justify. “Pensioners are right to be furious with Nathan Rees and David Borger at this blatant cash grab. “Not content with forcing pensioners to endure ever-lengthening waiting lists for hospital surgery, overcrowded trains, unsafe streets, now the

Rees Labor Government wants to hit them in the hip pocket as well. “The Rees Labor Government has failed to protect pensioners. “Which vulnerable group will be next on the hit list for this heartless Labor Government – people with a disability, the mentally ill, who knows? After today, Labor’s message is anyone is fair game. “Mr Borger is clearly an incompetent individual who is out of his depth. After bungling the placement of a paedophile, he’s now turned his attention to hitting pensioners with an unfair rent increase,” Ms Goward said.

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“I can tell you, I don’t think it’s an appropriate location… My hope is that he will be moved by tonight.” Housing Minister David Borger yesterday, AAP Housing Minister David Borger has been exposed as worryingly incompetent and full of spin, NSW Opposition Leader Barry O’Farrell said. “Yesterday Mr Borger was talking tough over moving a paedophile out of public housing in Ryde, but today it’s been revealed he can’t do a thing,” Mr O’Farrell said. “How could a Minister go out and make such claims when they are simply wrong?” he said. “It shows how hard the Rees Labor Government spins to get itself out of trouble. “Clearly Mr Borger didn’t even bother to get advice before shooting his mouth off and dashed the hopes of concerned Ryde residents. “David Borger’s blunder is a basic error and a Minister anywhere near the top of his game should not have made this mistake. It’s even more worrying, considering Nathan Rees considers Mr Borger a star performer. “Mr Borger doesn’t even have the excuse of only just taking on the job. He’s been Housing Minister for a year. “This rank

incompetence from Mr Borger will only heighten the angst among the local community who are concerned to have this individual living near them. I urge them not to take action into their owns hands. “Mr Borger needs to explain how this individual was allowed to live so close to children and schools. “The NSW Liberal/ Nationals will be happy to look at any legislation the Rees Labor Government wants to bring forward to correct the loophole this episode has uncovered,” Mr O’Farrell said. Last week, David Borger showed himself to be utterly incompetent over his bungling of the placement of a convicted paedophile; today he’s proven he’s heartless as well, Shadow Minister for Community Services Pru Goward said. It’s been revealed the Rees Labor Government will eat up a large chunk of the Commonwealth’s pension increase by raising rents for public housing tenants. “The heartless attack on the most vulnerable in our community shows how out of touch and incompetent David Borger is,” Ms Goward said. “Mr Borger’s attack on pensioners shows you how low the Rees Labor Government is prepared to stoop,” she said. “Pension-



ers have been waiting years for this much-deserved increase in their payments - they shouldn’t have State Labor taking with one hand what Federal Labor gives with the other. “With the Federal Government pumping billions of dollars of stimulus money into public housing, this rental increase is impossible to justify. “Pensioners are right to be furious with Nathan Rees and David Borger at this blatant cash grab. “Not content with forcing pensioners to endure ever-lengthening waiting lists for hospital surgery, overcrowded trains, unsafe streets, now the Rees Labor Government wants to hit them in the hip pocket as well. “The Rees Labor Government has failed to protect pensioners. “Which vulnerable group will be next on the hit list for this heartless Labor Government – people with a disability, the mentally ill, who knows? After today, Labor’s message is anyone is fair game. “Mr Borger is clearly an incompetent individual who is out of his depth. After bungling the placement of a paedophile, he’s now turned his attention to hitting pensioners with an unfair rent increase,” Ms Goward said.

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who are concerned to have this individual living near them. I urge them not to take action into their owns hands. “Mr Borger needs to explain how this individual was allowed to live so close to children and schools. “The NSW Liberal/Nationals will be happy to look at any legislation the Rees Labor Government wants to bring forward to correct the loophole this episode has uncovered,” Mr O’Farrell said. Last week, David Borger showed himself to be utterly incompetent over his bungling of the placement of a convicted paedophile; today he’s proven he’s heartless as well, Shadow Minister for Community Services Pru Goward said. It’s been revealed the Rees Labor Government will eat up a large chunk of the

Commonwealth’s pension increase by raising rents for public housing tenants. “The heartless attack on the most vulnerable in our community shows how out of touch and incompetent David Borger is,” Ms Goward said. “Mr Borger’s attack on pensioners shows you how low the Rees Labor Government is prepared to stoop,” she said. “Pensioners have been waiting years for this much-deserved increase in their payments - they shouldn’t have State Labor taking with one hand what Federal Labor gives with the other. “With the Federal Government pumping billions of dollars of stimulus money into public housing, this rental increase is impossible to justify. “Pensioners are right to be furious with Nathan Rees and David Borger

at this blatant cash grab. “Not content with forcing pensioners to endure ever-lengthening waiting lists for hospital surgery, overcrowded trains, unsafe streets, now the Rees Labor Government wants to hit them in the hip pocket as well. “The Rees Labor Government has failed to protect pensioners. “Which vulnerable group will be next on the hit list for this heartless Labor Government – people with a disability, the mentally ill, who knows? After today, Labor’s message is anyone is fair game. “Mr Borger is clearly an incompetent individual who is out of his depth. After bungling the placement of a paedophile, he’s now turned his attention to hitting pensioners with an unfair rent increase,” Ms Goward said.



Minister for Fair Trading, Virginia Judge is encouraging New South Wales consumers to have their say on the funeral industry via a confidential consumer hotline and online survey. Ms Judge said the hotline and survey will run for four weeks from 6-30 October and will give consumers the opportunity to share their views and concerns on the funeral industry. “The Rees Government is working hard to ensure consumers are protected at vulnerable moments in their lives, which is why we introduced a new funeral information standard on 1 February this year,” Ms Judge said. “Consumers must now be given standardised information about funeral services and costs before entering into an agreement, and get an itemised bill before making a

final payment. “This is about protecting consumers against unscrupulous funeral operators and to ensure they know what they are paying for.” Ms Judge said the consumer hotline and online survey would allow the Rees Government to evaluate whether the new legislation is working. “The NSW Government conducted a similar survey in 2005 which led to the introduction of the new funeral information standard,” Ms Judge said. “Since the standard was introduced, Fair Trading has received two formal complaints about the funeral industry. “One of these complaints was about a delay in receiving a death certificate while the other complaint was about invoicing. “This latest survey will help us determine if community concerns have changed

since 2005.” Ms Judge said Fair Trading had carried out a compliance blitz, Operation Compassion, in May this year targeting 61 funeral directors in Sydney, Newcastle, Orange and Wollongong areas. “Fair Trading officers found a high level of compliance with only seven funeral directors having limited or no knowledge of the new funeral information standard,” she said. “Fair Trading issued these funeral directors with warning letters and provided them with a copy of the legislation. Traders found to be non-compliant in the future will face an on-the-spot fine of $550.” Consumers can have their say on the funeral industry by phoning 1300 528 937 or visiting between 6-30 October.


The Navtarang Lifestyle

How many pay cheques from disaster are you?

Do you know how much you’d need to keep the wolves from the door if you lost your job? Despite the Global Financial Crisis, life goes on much as normal in Australia. We’re not seeing the queues of people lining up for charitable donations like they’re showing on US news reports every night. Yes, unemployment has risen, but it’s not been as bad as everyone thought it was going to be. Right? True. But just because our news headlines are not full of people losing their homes or wondering where their next meal is coming from doesn’t mean it’s not happening. According to a report by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, Counting The Homeless, there are around 100,000 homeless Australians – and families with children are the fastest-growing group among that number. The fact is that, on the verge of the financial crisis in 2007, the former Reserve Bank governor Ian Mcfarlane announced that ‘Australian consumers have uncomfortably high levels of debt’. While the GFC put a dent in spending for a short while, stimulus packages that encouraged us to keep outlaying cash meant that you might feel unpatriotic for not ‘doing your bit’. Which means that personal debt levels in this country are still high –Veda Advantage’s Australian Debt Report (April 2009) found that 40 per cent of those surveyed owed the same amount as they had 12 months previous-

ly. The same survey found that one in five Australians (18 per cent) were struggling to make repayments on their debts. Where do you fit into this picture? Would you describe yourself as a person who lives week-toweek? Does your bank balance veer dangerously close to the big fat zero just before payday? What would happen if you, say, lost your job? Or the car blew up? Or any one of 100 other financial disasters struck? One minute you’re cruising along, a little breathlessly. The next, you’ve hit the wall. Most financial experts suggest that singles and couples have a savings nest egg of at least two months’ wages set aside as a contingency fund. That’s not the money you plan to blow on a Christmas holiday, that’s serious ‘just in case’ savings. Young families should have an emergency fund of more like three months’ pay. How many of us have that? Wondering how you could ever get to it? Don’t panic – anything’s possible! Try our three-step plan for starters. Build a buffer Step by step, little by little… Your first goal is to keep the bank balance above zero at all times. Each week, plan to leave a little bit more in the bottom of the well. Start with just $5 if you’re really struggling to make ends meet. Set a small goal – make it $50 if necessary – and as soon as you have that, whisk it out into a savings account (on-

line to save fees). Voila – savings! Look at your debts While you’re saving your $5 a week, you don’t want to be spending $10 on your credit cards – even if it’s in interest. Nothing will eat up meagre emergency savings faster than having to service debts. To get a clear picture of your financial health, you must have a clear picture of your financial drains. Which means writing it all down. If servicing your debts is taking up more than 20 per cent of your weekly earnings, it’s time to take control. If you feel this particular step is insurmountable, move swiftly onto step three. Get help Financial counsellors help people with money problems. That’s their calling in life. They have seen problems like yours a million times before. No financial crisis is too big or too small. Talk to them to help put your finances in perspective and for a goal plan to getting on top of things. They can even help you to negotiate with creditors and explore options such as bankruptcy. Choose a counsellor that does not charge for their services (there are heaps available) to ensure you get independent, confidential advice. For more information about financial counsellors, check out www., au or counselling.htm



A National Police Remembrance Day service will be held today to honour NSW Police Force officers who have died while on duty. Now in its 21st year, National Police Remembrance Day recognises the ultimate sacrifice made by police officers in Australasia and the South West Pacific region. A service will be held in Sydney at the Domain, and in other regional centres to pay tribute to those officers who have died on duty, as well as all serving officers who have passed away in other circumstances in the past 12 months. The ecumenical service at the Wall of Remembrance in the Domain will include a march past, fly-over by police helicopters following a one minute silence, and a performance by Melinda Schneider and the Australian Girls Choir. The service will be hosted by NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione and attended by Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir, Governor of NSW; NSW Premier Nathan Rees; Police Minister Michael Daley; and other dignitaries. Since 1862, 249 NSW Police Officers have died in the line of duty. As a mark of respect to those officers who lost their lives protecting our community, police across the state will wear blue and white chequered ribbons. There will also be a special tribute to nine

officers who have passed away from other causes during the year. NSW Police Force Commissioner, Andrew Scipione, said Remembrance Day is an important day in the calendar for all police. “National Police Remembrance Day reminds us that a safe community often comes at a very high price. It is a solemn day when police pause, remember and reflect on those who have lost their lives in the execution of their duties,” Commissioner Scipione said. “It is a day for police officers, family and the community to come together to honour the memory of those lives that have been lost.” Melinda Schneider will be joined by the Australian Girls Choir to perform her song ‘Courageous’ at the Remembrance Day service as a dedication to her father Sgt James Bean, who served in the NSW Police Force for over forty years, and passed away in 2003 following a battle with cancer. Following the death of Sgt Bean, Melinda and her mother Mary automatically became members of Police Legacy. A national service will be held later today at the National Police Memorial in Canberra, and other services will be held throughout Australia and overseas today to honour fallen officers. Senior Constable Chris Thornton died after a motor vehicle collision pushed his vehicle into

a power pole on 13 April 2002. Chris was 35-years-old and attached to Brisbane Waters Local Area Command Highway Patrol at the time of his death. Chris is remembered fondly by police and other emergency services officers - who continue to raise money for charities in his name through the annual Chris Thornton Memorial Shield - a trophy in his honour. The partner of Chris, Sarah Matthews, will be attending the service today and is available to be interviewed. Senior Constable Gary Lambert died following a surfing accident at Terrigal Beach in March 1995. Gary was 35-years-old at the time of his death, and is survived by his wife Anne, a 23-year-old daughter Tara, 21-year-old son Charlie, and 15-year-old son Billy. At the time of his death, Gary Lambert worked at Hornsby Local Area Patrol as a general duties officer and had worked previously in the Central Coast. Billy is the 2009 recipient of the Commissioner’s Scholarship, and will join his mother Anne to speak to media upon request. Further Information: The NSW Police Honour Roll media release is located on the news section of An image of the Remembrance Day ribbon is available through the Police Media Unit on 8263 6100.

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The Navtarang Lifestyle

Tips to cut time and money off your loan

Firoz Pethani, CPA

Current economic factors are offering Australians a rare opportunity to gain a stronger footing on the property ladder. Decades-low interest rates, increased house-hold wealth and improved affordability are helping potential buyers find it easier to enter the market while putting extra funds into the hands of property owners. This low Interest rates won’t last forever. By increasing the amount paid into a loan, borrowers can benefit from a reduced loan term and less interest paid over its lifetime. Contributing extra lump sums will achieve the same result. Repaying a mortgage at a level higher than necessary will create a financial buffer and help ensure borrowers are prepared for when interest rates inevitably rise, potentially reducing the risk of mortgage repayment arrears. Please following top tips to improve your mortgage progress: Lump Sum Payments. Making a lump sum payment (big or small) into a loan can make a substantial difference. Take a loan of $300,000 at a standard variable rate of 5.85% over 30 years. Say a borrower contributed $500 from their 2009 tax return into the above mentioned loan then this would reduce the overall term by one month and the total repayments by approximately $2,375.05. Imagine the difference that doing this every year or with a higher amount would make! More frequent repayments. Depending on the loan type and lender, a property owner may save thousands of dollars in interest by paying a loan every fortnight or week rather than monthly. For example, a borrower with monthly repayments of $2,000 will pay $24,000 off their loan by year end (12 x $2,000). If they paid fortnightly, by splitting their monthly repayment in half and making repayments of $1,000, they will pay $26,000 (26 x $1,000) as there are 26 fortnights in a year. So, paying fortnightly allows borrowers to squeeze in the equivalent of one extra monthly repayment each year, helping to reduce the overall loan term and total repayments. 100% Off-set Account. Loans with 100% off-set accounts enable borrowers to link a savings account with their home loan account and ‘off-set’ or use that amount to reduce the interest accumulated on

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their mortgage. For example, if a borrower has $5,000 savings deposited in a full offset account, then on the abovementioned loan the term would be reduced by one year and they would save approximately $22,787. Note that some lenders offer partial offset only. Increase your repayments Borrowers should consider rounding up their loan repayment amount to the nearest $10, $50 or $100. If a borrower with the above mentioned loan rounded up monthly repayments of $1,770 to $1,800, the loan will be repaid approximately 14 months earlier and they will save approximately $17,400. Pro Pack It’s a good idea for borrowers to investigate their eligibility for a professional package (aimed at higher income earners) where they can receive reduced interest rates and, often, fewer fees, Gold credit cards and home insurance discounts. Those with an existing loan should give themselves a home loan health check every year or two because if their circumstances have changed (e.g. income or lifestyle) they could possibly get a loan for their current situation.

Buying a house? How a lawyer can help? Dr Chandrika Subramaniam - Solicitor

Disclaimer: The below given tips should not be taken as legal advice. It is only a guideline and individual circumstances may vary and you are advised to take legal advice. What do you need to look when you buy new house? • Get a good Lawyer • Ask for a cost agreement and cost disclosure explaining the costs involved and what work will be done. • Get your loan organized before cooling off that means get your loan pre approved and then look for house. • Make your lawyer to red the contract and advice you .when you buy a house for $400,000, it is worth paying for the legal consultation get a written advice. • This will avoid pitfalls. • There are hidden costs like searches, pest and building re-

ports, and other checks before buying the house, paying few hundred dollars will save thousands in future. What do you need to ask the lawyer? • Are there smoke alarms fixed? • Is the sewerage diagram alright or is there and hidden problems? • Are there any covenants? – This explains Access to the property • What are the mortgages? • Whose names on the title? • Is there any private caveat? • When is the cooling off? • When is the settlement date? • If not settle on time what is the additional legal fee? • And what will be interest charged on the balance amount? • Are there special conditions with adverse effects?

• What if loan does not get approved? • Check whether Vendor’s insurance/ Purchaser’s insurance are covered? Land use- according to the zoning regulation of the council any restrictions found? • Is there a First Home buyer exemption stamp duty applicable? • Ask the lawyer to explain all the special conditions. • Get a written advice by paying, which will save you money if something goes wrong. When meeting your lawyer • Ask about costs (or legal aid if you need financial assistance). • Take notes of what is said to you. • Respond clearly to the questions your lawyer asks you. • Ask the lawyer questions if you don’t understand something or want to know what you need to do.


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Kartik Maas & Deepawali Monday, 5th October to Monday, 2nd November 2009 In the month of Kartik, Tulsi Mata is worshipped with special importance. Apart from Tulsi Vivah on 29 October 2009, aarti and offerings of Jal to Tulsi Mata should be observed daily. Vaishno devotees also light a ghee diya under a Tulsi plant every day of the month of Kartik.

Pt. Daven

Mob: 0414 560 424 Hindu Calendar’s most auspicious month of Kartik starts Monday 5th of October, and runs to Monday, 2nd November 2008. During this month any daan (donation to charity), teerath ratra (visit to Holy shrines), Kartik snaan (bathing in Holy Rivers), Havan Yagh, Japa and recital of Holy Granths yields enormous benefits. This month is particularly divine for observing the following festivals: Karva Chauth Wednesday 7th October 2009 Ahoi Vrat Sunday 11th October 2009 Dhanteras Thursday 15th October 2009 Hanuman Jayanti Narak Chaturdasi Friday 16th October 2009 Deepawali – Saturday 17 October 2009 Govardhan Puja Bhaiya Dhooj Sunday 18 October 2009 Akshay Naumi Tuesday 27 October 2009 Tulsi Vivah Thursday 29 October 2009 Kartik Purnima Guru Nanak Jayanti Monday 2 November 2009 Ahoi Vrat Sunday 11th October 2009 On this day parents fast for the well being of their children. This vrat is observed on the 8th day of Krishan Paksh of Kartik Maas. It is intended to help parents, especially mothers, solicit blessings from God for the protection of their children. Fasting should be observed until at least sunset, or if practical, sunrise the next day. While nirjal fasting is not recommended for this vrat, those fasting should stay on fruits and milk. They are allowed to break their fast after performing archana and aarti after sunset The Importance of Tulsi and Kartik month

Karva Chauth Wednesday, 7 October 2009 This is the day married ladies observe strict nirajal fast until after sunset. They break their fast after viewing Chandra Devta, after 6pm. If Chandra Devta is not visible on the night they are encouraged to fast until sunrise the next day. The purpose of the married women observing a fast on this day is to ensure the health, prosperity and long life of their husbands, and celebrate the bond between wife and husband. The well known story of Veeravati shows us the power of this varat. Veeravati undertook the Karva Chauth fast and was finding it difficult, but was committed to completing it. Her seven brothers saw her suffering in observing the fast, and decided to relieve her by tricking her into breaking the fast early by shining a mirror on a hill so that Veeravati would think it was the moon. Veeravati unknowingly broke her fast early due to the brothers’ prank. Shortly after she received news that her husband had died. On the advice of an elderly woman, Veeravati devotedly preserved her husband’s body and observed the full Karva Chauth fast the next year, at which time her husband’s body came back to life, and the couple had long and happy lives together. It is said that women have the innate power to undertake great varats more so than men, and a Pati Vrat (devoted wife) has the power to protect her husband from an untimely death by observing Karva Chauth. Kartik Maas & Deepawali Kartik is the eighth lunar month of the Hindu year when the sun is Krittika or Pleiades. It is well established that any form of japa, tapasya (religious sacrifice) and recital of holy Granths during the month of Kartik yields enormous benefits towards uplifting our spiritual lives. It is a month both the Vaishno

(followers of Lord Vishnu and Avatars) and Shaiv (followers of Lord Shiva) devotees consider to be the holiest month of the year. While celebrations of Deepavali are mainly centred around Lord Vishnu’s avatars – marking the return of Lord Ram from exile and killing off the Demon King Narak Asura by Lord Krishna – Kartik Purnima (2 November 2009) is more auspicious for Lord Shiva’s Bhakti. It was on this day that Lord Shiva destroyed the demon Tripura. Kartik Purnima Kartik Purnima is considered as the Deepavali for the Gods or Dev-Deepavali. This Purnima marks the end of a month of festivals like Karva Chauth, Deepavali, Govardhan Puja, Dhanteras, Hanuman Jyanti, Bhaiya Dhooj, Tulsi Vivah, Akshay Naumi and more. Kartik Purnima is a time of great celebration in Varanasi where thousands of diyas are lit and worship is made to the holy Ganga. It is said that on this day the Devas and Devtas descend to Earth in Varanasi, and they are welcomed by these great Kartik Purnima celebrations. This is also said to be the time when Lord Vishnu incarnated as Matsya avatar (fish avatar) to save the Vedas from being drowned in the oceans by the demon Sankha Asura. Kartik Snan During this month Kartik Snan is also considered divine. Devotees usually flock to the Ganga, Yamuna, Sarasvati, Triveni Rivers to cleanse themselves, however devotees could bathe in any rivers around the world during this month. Tulsi Ardent Vaishno devotees light a diya under the holy Tulsi plant every day of this month. It is said in Padma Puran that Lord Vishnu and his avatars are easily pleased by the worship of Tulsi plant in this month. Kartik month is a time of the year we must all make the most of. It is a time when we can cleanse ourselves of impurities and bring light, goodness and prosperity into our lives. God bless from, Pdt Davendra Sharma & family Mob: 0414 560 424 or or Tune in to Radio Navtarang Sydney from 3-6pm on Sundays.

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Warmer weather heralds the onset of cockroach season, with local pest experts predict-

ing high numbers again this summer. According to Amalgamated Pest Control Sydney branch manager Daryl Collins several cockroach pest species including American, Australian and German cockroaches are most likely to infest homes and buildings this summer. “While these insect pests may not have been as visible during the cooler months, the warmer weather is likely to trigger cockroach activity and add to increased pest sightings,” Daryl said. Daryl said this seasonal weather pattern will also enhance mating and increased egg production, which will hatch quickly at this time of the year. “Being cold blooded, these insects thrive in warm humid conditions and are most active from September to March. “Most cockroaches will breed rapidly throughout the year, but favour a humid environment above 27oC, so as the mercury rises locals can expect to see more cockroaches in and around their homes and businesses. “The German cockroach is the most common species to cohabit homes and because they are smaller than their Australian and American counterparts, they are very good at avoiding detection by homeowners. “While most people will tolerate one or two cockroaches, one female German cockroach can be responsible for producing more than 30,000 cock-

Humanity has faced a stark choice since the beginning of time and are constantly facing today. That is, Evolve or die. We are constantly interacting with each other and basically living in a survival mode. When faced with life’s seemingly huge problems, an individual either dies or rises above their limitations. Regardless of how spiritual you are has nothing to do with what your beliefs are, but everything to do with your state of consciousness. This, in turn, determines how you interact with others in the world. Look at what’s happening in the world today. There are wars between nations, religions, cultures and even down to our individual families. Do we ever question who’s causing all these sufferings in the world? Naturally, we tend to blindly point or blame someone else, isn’t it ? Well, who are We versus Them? Don’t we all make up of this ‘we or ‘them’. It is one of the hardest concepts to digest and realise that we all are somehow responsible in creating our own reality. And once this realisation takes place it causes an awakening or evolvement in us and, that in turn, transforms us into loving human beings. So, what is at play in human consciousness that’s the root cause of our suffering? It’s your ‘Ego’. Wouldn’t you agree? Ego is no more than the identification with ones Form, that is

‘thought’ forms. This results in a total unawareness of our connectedness with the whole, that is, others and the source. One commits sin and suffering and becomes deluded. When this delusion of separateness underlies and controls whatever one thinks, says and does, what kind of world does one create? To find the answer, just look around you now, observe how humans relate to each other in every situation. So, if the structures of the human mind remain unchanged, we will always end up re-creating fundamentally the same old world, the same evils, and the same dysfunctions in our life. We need to understand here that ‘heaven’ is not a location somewhere, but refers to our inner realm of consciousness. Earth, on the other hand is the outer manifestation in form, which is always a reflection of our inner form. So, isn’t it appropriate to realise that we are constantly co-creating our reality by our thinking, being and doing. Every moment we are creating a heaven or hell by our own thoughts, but we cannot comprehend that it’s our own creation. One cannot see their face without a mirror but our thoughts and doings are the ‘reflections’ we get to see and experience from others. To change for your betterment it becomes necessary to go within yourself and see the reflection without

Warmer weather heralds the onset of cockroach season, with local pest experts predicting high numbers again this summer. • According to Amalgamated Pest Control, several cockroach pest species including American, Australian and German cockroaches are most likely to infest homes and buildings this summer. • While these insect pests may not have been as visible during the cooler months, the warmer weather is likely to trigger cockroach activity and add to increased pest sightings. • Most cockroaches will breed rapidly throughout the year, but favour a humid environment above 27oC, so as the mercury rises locals can expect to see more cockroaches in and around their homes and businesses. • Cockroaches come into contact with disease organisms including salmonella and other organisms associated with dysentery, typhoid, hepatitis and tuberculosis, which are passed via cockroach droppings and regurgitating characteristics. I have attached a more detailed media release discussing the likelihood of increased local cockroach activity in the coming months.

Cockroaches set to encroach this summer

roaches within a home over a 12 month period. “Cockroaches are nocturnal and scrounge around kitchens seeking out food and water at night, so they can often go undetected. “During the day they’ll hide in cracks and crevices, in cupboards and concealed in kitchen appliances such as fridges, stoves, washers and dryers and water heaters,” Daryl said. Most species of cockroaches are generally considered to be a health hazard as they move through unsanitary places such as sewers and rubbish bins. They are responsible for transmitting bacteria organisms through contact with kitchen and bathroom surfaces. Cockroaches come into contact with disease organisms including salmonella and other organisms associated with dysentery, typhoid, hepatitis and tuberculosis, which are passed via cockroach droppings and regurgitating characteristics. Good sanitation and removal of accessible food can minimise the extent of most cockroach infestation. “Carefully inspecting any produce or packages before bringing them into the home can help to prevent cockroaches from establishing themselves in the first place,” Daryl said. For more information on how to protect your home or business from pests, contact

Amalgamated Pest Control on 13 19 61 or visit


a judgemental mind. Fundamentally, it’s our ego-structure that is the root cause of all of humanities separation. The reality may not be what it really is, but our ego deludes us. Everything that we experience on the outside is just a reflection of our inside. No matter what happens in our life, be sure to count your blessings because any crisis always has within it a hidden blessing if you take the time to look a little closer. So, on a positive note, it is that time for the celebration of Dipawali for Hindus and Ramadan for Muslims and many other symbolic celebrations for other cultures. It’s so appropriate that these festivities are a reminder to humans to dwell within oneself and cleanse our inner- self. Lighting candles or diya signifies not only an outer light, but more significantly that inner-light dwelling within all human beings that is so pure and waiting to be expressed to the outer world. Similarly, for Muslims, Ramadan signifies the development of their inner strength and discipline which aligns with ones life. We all breath the same air, drink the same water, eat the same food and live in the same universe, so why can’t we cast aside our differences and live in a peaceful and harmonious environment. May peace be with you all. Daya Ram, (Metaphysics researcher)


The Navtarang Lifestyle

Yaadein Vision Group

Requests assistance from Ramayan Mandlis, Mosques & Churches during festive season

One of the largest Non Profitable, Charitable Organisation to Fiji Yaadein Vision Australia (YVA) is very kindly appealing to all Ramayan Mandlis, Mosques, Churches & all other organisations to think about the poor and needy children who desperately need your assistance to get them through these festive season and in the future Established in 2000, YVA to date has sponsored over 1,200 children in more than 50 schools in attaining their primary level education. These children would otherwise be working on the farms because their parents can not afford to put food on table let alone educate their children mainly in the western districts from Rakiraki to Navua incl Labasa

YVA sponsors and assists the poor & needy Students in association with Fiji Education Dept (Western) Yaadein Vision still have many unsponsored children and if you decide not to assist, many poor and needy children in the west & North will miss out on their Primary Education. Yaadein Vision during these Festive times of EID, Diwali & Christmas are requesting ALL the Ramayan Mandlis, Mosques, Churches and individuals to please assist the underprivileged children of Fiji You can Sponsor: 2 children for only $100/yr 10 children for only $500/yr 20 children for only $1,000/yr Glimpse of what YVA has donated so far‌

- 20 Water Tanks & 7 powerful Bore hole pumps to provide water to Schools, Communities, Mandirs, Churches, Mosques, Kabrastaan & Cemeteries etc - 100 Brand new wheel chairs - 300 Computers to Schools - Fax machines, Scanners, megaphone, garden tools etc - Over 7,000 library books to schools - Over $45,000 in cash to schools towards school fees for the poor - YVA was the first group to air freight (4 full containers courtesy Air Pacific) >600 food hamper packs, >32,000 exercise books & clothes (15 Tonnes) & distributed ourselves to the 2009 flood victims of Fiji (no middleman)

Donatiosn of More than 20 Water Tanks and 7 Bore Hole Pumps

To date YVA has donated of over $45,000 towards school fees for the poor students

Happy YVA Sponsored Children in Labasa

To date YVA has donated over 300 Computers to needy Schools

Happy Yaadein Sponsored Children in DAV Ba

Donations of over 7,000 Library Books to needy Schools

Yaadein Vision provides food & books to the flood victims Info: President

Mr. Anand Narayan on 0401862868 or Vice President

Mr. Mahesh Narayan on 0402250603


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Diwali Message Govind Sami On this auspicious occasion of Deepawali, it is my profound pleasure to extend my sincere good wishes and warmest greetings to all. Australia’s Indian community is particularly diverse, including people from India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore, South Africa, Fiji and many other countries. In all, because of our cultural and linguistic variety, our community mirrors Australia’s uniquely diverse, multicultural society. Every religious group has its own way of celebrating Deepawali but this is the only celebration common to all Hindus throughout the world. Deepawali is one of the oldest Hindu festivals on record. Its origin is lost in antiquity, in pre-Aryan times. Over these millennia, as a rallying force and as a popular medium for offering thanks to God, it has retained its characteristics most consistently, and in the last one hundred and seventy years, with the emigration of Hindus from India, it has spread to the four corners of the globe. Deepawali, the enchanting Festival of Lights, kindling new hopes and aspirations, is with us once again. Unity and diversity, the fundamental feature of the Hindu Dharma’ is illustrated in the observance of Deepawali. Celebrated by Hindus everywhere in a rich variety of forms, the central theme of the festival is always the same – the triumph of good over evil. The origin of Deepawali the most colourful of the Hindu festivals is shrouded in a multitude of mythological legends. In Fiji, the lateral meaning of Deepawali is portrayed by the dazzling displays of rows of rows of lamps in front of all homes. The most popular belief is that Lord Rama returned to Ayodhya from an exile of fourteen years after vanquishing Ravana and rescuing Sita from him. In the olden days the home coming of a victorious

monarch was commemorated by the lighting of lamps and flares. And so this auspicious occasion is celebrated by illuminations signifying the joyous return of Lord Rama and Sita to Ayodhya. Lord Rama is believed to be the seventh Avatar of God. The Lord is never born in ordinary sense. God is infinite and eternal, beyond the limits of birth and death. When the Lord is said to manifest himself at a particular place, at a particular time, on a particular occasion, it only means that this birth takes place with reference to an infinite being. The essence of divine existence manifests those of its super physical characteristics as are necessitated to usher up the individual to a higher level of God consciousness. In the Holy Gita, the Lord states: “Yadha Yadha hi dharmasya, Glanir Bhauti Bhara”

“Whenever there is a decline of righteousness, then I manifest myself for the protection of good, for the destruction of evil, and for the establishment of righteousness, I am born from age to age.” The bodily manifestations or incarnations of God are known as Avatars. The Avatars are shining illustrations of the forward march and the upward accent of the souls towards completeness and immensity. The Avatar is the golden bridge between mortality and immortality. In an avatar the divine and human elements are inextricably blended. The Avatar therefore radiated light and love. His birth on earth is the rekindling of faith and fellowship. The Avatars presence lights up the minds of mind and women and establishes the kingdom of God within a human heart. The life of Lord Rama is an excellent model for all of us. How good a person can become or to what heights can rise in life, can be learnt from the holy

book – RAMAYANA. Ideals are remembered and adored for the purpose of adopting them in our lives. We love ideals because we express thereby our yearning to identify and unite with them. The Deepawali celebration every year is an opportune period for us to saturate ourselves with the spirit of Lord Rama. The noblest lesson enshrined in the Ramayana is the supreme importance of righteousness in the life of every human being. Righteousness is not merely of moral code; it fulfils one’s sense of responsibility as an inherent unit of society and affirms the dignity of the human being. It is the fundamental principle which upholds the purpose of life. Cultivation of righteousness is the process of the enfoldment of the latent divinity within us, the glorious incarnation of the Supreme Being, as Lord Rama, ha exemplified through his own life, and how to follow the path of righteousness. Let this Deepawali mark the birth of new awareness and emulation of the spiritual ideals for which Lord Rama lived. Lakshmi pooja also forms an essential part of the festivities. Associated with Lakshmi, the Goddess of wealth, Deepawali is a period of abundance. Nothing dampens its traditional pomp and pageantry. Mango leaves flutter on the front doors, verandah and house tops, staging a grand spectacle of lights. It is said that Goddess Lakshmi rides around the world on a golden chariot on this night and will enter homes which welcome her with the largest array of lights. Small lamps are lit everywhere, and as saying goes, even the rubbish heap has it redemption on this day. The Arya Samaji’s celebrate Deepawali in remembrance of Swami Dayanand Saraswati – the founder of Arya Samaj. On this day Swami Dayanand Saraswati left his mortal self

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for heavenly abode, after years of relentless teaching on all aspects of the Vedas – the knowledge of God. Celebrations like this play an important role in our society. It promotes an understanding and our acceptance of our diverse range of cultures and provides the opportunity to share with others their cultural heritage. That variety of cul-

Let us disperse the darkness of ignorance by the light of knowledge on this Deepawali and pray to the Goddess of Wealth to bring joy and happiness to all. Govind Sami Immediate Past President International Congress for Fiji Indians (ICFI)

tures and people is what makes our society interesting and dynamic and gives Australia its special character as a tolerant, open society which celebrates its diversity. “ASTO MA SAD GAMAYA TAMSO MA JYOTIR GAMAYA MRITYOR MA AMRIT GAMAY”

Fiji Teachers & Friends Association President: Chhatar Pal Secretary: Shri K Dass

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Assisting the Downtrodden Helping someone affected by drug abuse is more often than not, quite a difficult endeavour. For most it is not as simple as using or not using. There are a range of problems that go with it--substance abuse being central, but not the only problem to solve. As one put it, “It started with weed, then the pills [ecstasy] and acid, making cocktails of all sorts of drugs. I took copious amounts of these chemicals every day for two years until I had a bad trip and

There are other great risks. 10th of September marked World Suicide Prevention Day and research tells us drug abuse increases the risk of suicide. When you are dealing with people who have hit rock bottom, they not very far from death, gruesomely enough, and many have come very close to it in their drug use. There are also terrible side effects from both illicit and prescription drugs that exacerbate the situation. My aunt was a victim of

to his pain. But the solution eventually becomes a bigger problem. What may have been a slight relief from stress, or just a fun way to party, then turns into the bane of their existence, taking away the dreams and happiness that life once held. One Australian commented to me that she first started taking speed thinking she would be alert and get more work done. But after 6 months on the drug, she found that it didn’t do it for her at all. She

went into toxic psychosis. I had voices in my head, had the shakes and couldn’t leave my home for six months. I became very withdrawn and thought everyone was watching me. I ended up homeless and on the streets, living and sleeping in a cardboard box, begging and struggling to find ways to get my next meal. I asked myself if this is rock bottom and I believe that it was.”

such adverse effects to psychiatric medication--it cost her her life. Why do people take drugs in the first place? Some of the main reasons are peer pressure, to escape, relieve boredom, experiment--but all have in common that the drugs are a solution to a problem. One researcher wrote that man has, for thousands, eventually turned to drugs if he couldn’t find another solution

would get wired up, but have a lot of incomplete projects at home. Then she didn’t want to be out in public with other parents, for fear they would “know”. So she missed social functions and felt paranoia that goes with amphetamines. There is hope to such a desperate situation. And our brightest hope lies in prevention, but education helps those who are wanting to be free of the grip of

Satya Narayan Katha Hanuman Pooja Shiu Pooja

Durga Pooja Laxmi Pooja Naugrah Shanti

Ph 02 9676 0640 Mob: 0423 486 082 drugs too. There is a new DVD, The Truth about Drugs Documentary is being distributed by Drug Free Ambassadors Australia to all who want to help. Free copies are being given out, sponsored by the Church of Scientology, to very positive reviews. Kelsey of Sydney says of the new TRUTH ABOUT DRUGS REAL PEOPLE,

REAL STORIES documentary: “It shows the whole life cycle of someone who is a drug user and abuser. This (new DVD) is more their level, what you can relate to as a teenager. It’s something that you can relate to because it’s a first hand experience of someone that’s gone through it. It’s not authority telling you. It’s some-

one else who’s lived it. ‘This is what happened to me. And this is what shouldn’t happen to you.’” Should anyone want a copy, I’ll be happy to send it to them. Contact us on info@ and they can preview the video at Cyrus Brooks, President, Drug Free Ambassadors Australia

PT Harish Sharma at Ram Krishna Mandir

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Prepared by “Acharya”Pt.Rajan sharma(Master’s in Astrology/Journalism/Economics) Tel- 0434570379,, Sydney, POBox-151,Marrickville, NSW-2204, Sydney


(April 21- May 20)

Your area of personal income and values seem to be giving you some concerns and tension as you see slow changes coming to your life, but these changes are of a very favorable nature. You could be communicating to a friend some of these worries. All this might not be of help to you as this could cause more worries. You must be aware that some of these changes are connected to responsibilities at your home base but you could handle this in an effective way as you have a special talent to do this. There are very favorable circumstances surrounding your areas of love and children.


(April 21- May 20)

This month your thoughts will be into communicating with siblings and relatives related to a possible move of residence. Much cooperation could come from an interchange of ideas and outside resources could be part of this picture. Difficulties related to money matters could bring some tension that could have to be worked out constructively probably with the intervention of an understanding friend. Your beliefs and way of thinking have been changing and you are starting to comprehend more now than you could before. You could have some worries concerning your future as you would like to push towards what you want in life.


(May 21- June 21)

This month you should be involved in projects concerning friends or charity organizations and there will be much cooperation from your mate or partner. You will have very encouraging thoughts concerning your personal responsibilities. Work that you have done in the past could be profitable for you right now in better circumstances than you could ever expect. In spite of all this, you could be having a hard time trying to reconcile things that you have done in the past with what you would like to do in the future and now. There is much desire to change the ways that you use to do things before, as you feel that you are beating a different drum right now.


(June 22- July 22)

This month will bring to you many private moments as your thoughts could be absorbed in finding a way to facilitate a relief from your money restrictions that you have for approximately the last two years. There are many changes with your joint financial interest that are bringing many slow promising changes to your life. You would like to take some risks and they could bring to you much tension in connection to your future endeavors. Communication with friends and your mate or partner should increase and this will be of a favorable nature and could bring some constructive ways to change your goals in a positive manner. Leo


(July 23- August 22))

A far away trip of a short duration could be on the agenda for you this month. This could be done for pleasure and also could be connected to your line of work. There are certain issues that you will have to reconcile mentally as your future at work is giving you some worries and concerns. Harmony at your home base seems to be highlighted right now. This could be very helpful with some issues that you have with your mate or partner that will have to be worked out without flying off the handle and acting on impulse. Love could be in the air if you know when to see it.


(August 23 - Sept 23)

Your career is very much on your mind right now and a possibility of a promotion that has been long overdue could be on the agenda for you this month. You must be aware of the limits that you have in this situation which might be mainly self imposed. You are feeling right now very optimistic and looking forward to expanding your knowledge with investments or speculations. You will have to use your insight in this situation as changes in your joint financial interest could come in a very rapid fashion. You will be showing what you know in making decisions in this area.


(Sept 24 - October 23)

Your area of marriage and partnerships is highlighted this month. Lines of communication with your mate or partner are open and very harmonious in spite of some differences that you might have concerning your home as some tension seems to be surrounding this area connected to your future joint finances and it could cause you some agitation. Your area of investments and speculations show a desire to get into a deal in a very rapid fashion as things appear very good, but you should guard yourself from any deception that could involve this situation. Use your intuition and gut feeling on this and you cannot go wrong.


(October 24 - Nov 22)

The area of work is on the forefront for you this month. You will have much interchange of ideas and communication concerning your personal finances that could result in a profitable outcome for you money wise. This should not come fast to you but it will be a slow process. This will be useful to you as you will learn and mature handling your joint resources. Communication with your mate or partner could cause you some agitation regarding your future as there are some differences of opinion concerning your home and very fast changes that are happening here. Some of these happenings are very much to your liking but watch for self deception.



A short pleasure trip could be on the horizon for you this month. This could be something that you have been planning for a while and it might be happening now. This will be an opportunity that will be facilitated with the help of your mate or partner. Saying anything that comes to your mind without thinking first could be the cause of some agitation concerning your future at work. Try to use your language skills in a measured way as this could also backfire and give you worries concerning your personal income.


(Jan20- Feb19)

This month you should be involved in projects concerning friends or charity organizations and there will be much cooperation from your mate or partner. You will have very encouraging thoughts concerning your personal responsibilities. Work that you have done in the past could be profitable for you right now in better circumstances than you could ever expect. In spite of all this, you could be having a hard time trying to reconcile things that you have done in the past with what you would like to do in the future and now. There is much desire to change the ways that you use to do things before, as you feel that you are beating a different drum right now.



















(Dec21- Jan19)

Your home and things related to it are in the spotlight for you this month. Your thoughts will be involved in analyzing the inner changes that you are going through and your responsibilities at your work place that are bringing about many of these very favorable changes in yourself. You will be feeling this month very energetic and with a desire to do many things concerning social activities but this could cause you some agitation as you do not like to have too many irons in the fire, you prefer to do one thing at a time. Also unexpected cost caused by social activities of a very pleasant nature could cause some $tension.



(February20-March 20)

The spotlight for you this month is on your area of joint financial interest and outside resources. You are putting all your thoughts into the area of investments and speculations as there are many issues that need clarification and negotiation in this area. This could cause you some agitation concerning future matters. Help from your home base will be helpful to you in showing you how to look at your limitations and how to assert your authority. Your special talents will come to the surface in a very fortunate way in dealing with your mate or partner. Cooperation from a friend will be very lucky for you.

FAST AND FESTIVALS Bhaum Pradosh and Vaman Jayanti on Tuesday 1st September 2009, Anant Chaturdashi on Thursday 3rd September 2009, Bhadrapada Purnima Mahalaya Sraddha begins on Friday 4th September 2009, Pitri paksha Shraddha begins on Saturday 5th September 2009, Angaraki Ganesh Chaturthi on Tuesday 8th September 2009, Mahalakshmi Vrat on Friday 11th September 2009, Jivitputrika Vrat, Ashokashthami on Saturday 12th Septermber 2009, Matri Nvami Shraddha on Sunday 13th September 2009, Indira Ekadashi Vrat on Tuesday 15th September 2009, Pradosh Vrat begins 13: 18 hrs onWednesday 16th September 2009, Sarva Pitri Shraddha on Amavashya Friday 18th September 2009, Durga Navratri begins on Saturday 19th September 2009, Bhadra Kaali Jayanti on Friday 25th September 2009, Durga Ashthami on Saturday 26th September 2009, Mahanavami pooja on Sunday 27th September 2009, Vijayadashmi on Monday 28th September 2009, Aparajita Ekadashi on Tuesday 29th September 2009. Panchak: Panchak begins on Thursday 3rd September 2009 in afternoon 14:03 hrs and will end on Tuesday 8th September 2009 in morning at 09:15 hrs. Second Panchak begins in this month from Wednesday 30th September 2009 in evening at 21:31 hrs and ends on 5th October in afternoon at 15:42 hrs..

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Film-makers across the globe have often told stories of calamities/riots/disasters -- natural and unnatural -- and the aftermath. ‘Firaaq’, which marks the directorial debut of actress Nandita Das, also looks at the lives of common men after the riots in Gujarat. More of a docu-drama, ‘Firaaq’ nar-

rates six different stories that are not connected with one another. Nor are they similar, nor do they meet towards the culmination. Told with utmost sensitivity, the film pricks your conscience at several points of the narrative and when you make it to the Exit after the film has ended, you carry the

closes the door on a woman desperately seeking refuge and then struggles to overcome her guilt... The loyalty of two best friends [Shahana Goswami] is challenged in times rife with fear and suspicion... A group of victimized young men seek revenge as a way out of their helplessness and anger... A modern-day Hindu-Muslim couple [Sanjay Suri, Tisca Chopra] struggle between the survival instinct to hide their true identities and the desire to assert them... A boy having lost most of his family in the riots wanders through the streets searching for his missing father... A saintly musician [Naseer-

uddin Shah] clings on to his idealism until an evidence of civil strife shakes his faith. The opening sequence of ‘Firaaq’ says it all, when a truck empties dead bodies as if it were emptying debris or rubble. It hits you more sharply than any weapon. Subsequently, you are introduced to the assorted characters that have been affected, directly or indirectly, to the riots. The six stories run concurrently, raising so many questions all through. Nandita Das gets it right, except for the open end which doesn’t really have a culmination like most Hindi movies. One aspect that could go against the film! Nandita is a competent story-

teller and her choice of stories as also the actors is just right. The actors only carry the film to dizzy heights with splendid portrayals. Ravi K. Chandran’s cinematography captures the mood brilliantly. ‘Firaaq’ has an ensemble cast and each of them sparkle in their respective roles. But the faces that continue to haunt you even after the film has ended are that of the child actor, Deepti Naval and Shahana Goswami. On the whole, ‘Firaaq’ is one of the finest docu-dramas made in India. It’s disturbing. It’s powerful. It’s thought-provoking. A film for the discerning viewer who likes to go beyond the stereotype.

The promos of Deepa Mehta’s ‘Videsh - Heaven On Earth’ bring back memories of Jag Mundhra’s ‘Provoked’, which also spoke of domestic violence. Sure, ‘Videsh - Heaven On Earth’ also looks at domestic violence, it’s also about a Punjabi woman who continues to take the beatings silently on a foreign land, but the similarities end there. There’s a twist in the tale in ‘Videsh - Heaven On Earth’ and that makes this film different from films of its ilk. Partly based on Girish Karnad’s play ‘Naag Mandala’ and perhaps inspired by several true stories, Deepa tries to inject myth into the main story and that’s one of the prime reasons why you don’t take to the film completely. ‘Videsh - Heaven On Earth’ is an unconventional subject, but the moment a reptile slides into the story, it robs the film of realism. Your heart breaks every time the woman is subjected to physical abuse. You do relate to the character since you’ve either heard or watched tales of domestic abuse. But the sheshnaag part in the film is difficult to digest. Besides, there’s a major flaw in the writing. The husband continues to indulge in physical abuse, but it’s not clear why he comes across as a frustrated man. Not once does the director spell out the rea-

sons why the husband behaves like a monster and keeps harming his wife, right under the nose of his family members. Yet, despite the hiccups, you can’t deny the fact that Deepa has handled the material with sensitivity. Even the end -- you can predict the conclusion -- is well executed. Chand [Preity Zinta] is a young bride leaving her home in Ludhiana, India, for the cavernous landscape of Brampton, Ontario, where her husband Rocky [Vansh Bhardwaj] and his very traditional family await her arrival. Everything is new to Chand, everything is unfamiliar including the quiet and shy Rocky, who she meets for the first time. Chand approaches her new life and her new land with equanimity and grace. But soon optimism turns to isolation as the family she has inherited struggles beneath the weight of unspoken words, their collective frustration becoming palpable. Trapped in a world she cannot comprehend and unable to please her husband, Chand is desperate. Hope comes in the form of Rosa, a tough and savvy Jamaican woman who works alongside Chand in a factory where immigrant women from all over the world clean and press dirty hotel laundry. Rosa gives her a magical root advising her

to put it in the drink. The root is supposed to seduce the one who takes it, making them fall hopelessly in love with the person who gives it to them. Chand’s attempts with the magic root lead to surreal incidents. Deepa gets it right till the snake transforms into her husband and that makes the entire aspect so hard to believe. You can’t relate to it anymore. The cinematography is dark at times. If the intention was to impart a gloomy and depressing tint, it doesn’t work. And why this need for a B & W look at several places? Doesn’t work! Preity delivers her finest performance to date. She displays the helplessness and pain that this character demands with gusto. It’s at par with any powerful act by any international actor. Newcomer Vansh Bhardwaj is striking. Very rarely do first-timers enact their parts with such precision. Amongst supporting actors, Preity’s mother-in-law and sister-inlaw are believable. On the whole, ‘Videsh - Heaven On Earth’ works in parts, but it’s not enough. At the box-office, the Indian market may not be too receptive to the film. It will have to look internationally to recoup the investment.

burden of a lot of questions on your mind. ‘Firaaq’ is disturbing. It makes you remove those blinkers and experience the truth. ‘Firaaq’ is purposeful and powerful and drives home the message in the most convincing manner, without taking sides. A middle class housewife [Deepti Naval]



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ment, he lands an accidental kiss on his lips. Pinu is thrown into a daze as he walks away from the restaurant that night. He has discovered a totally new fear: he might be Gay. Director Parvati Balagopalan has chosen an interesting story, but hasn’t been able to stretch it for two hours convincingly. In fact, there’s no movement in the first hour. The three characters [Vinay Pathak, Gul Panag and Anuj Chaudhary] keep talking randomly, without coming to the main issue. Besides, the conversation, most of the times,

Yash Chopra named top Asian filmmakerNikhil Dwivedi goes bald for Mani Ratnam’s ‘Raavan’I am yet to get my due in India: Irrfan KhanBollywood has little to offer to blondes: Florence BrudenellBruce’Daddy Cool’ and ‘Kissan’ fail to woo audiences abroad Ever solved a jigsaw puzzle? The plot of ‘Lottery’ is tougher to crack. This one pretends to be a thriller, a love triangle next, a whodunit later, a musical in between and ends up as something else altogether. Can’t figure out what this film is all about, seriously.

Besides, ‘Lottery’ is meant to be the launch pad of singer Abhijeet Sawant. The sad news is, Abhijeet has chosen the wrong script to launch himself as an actor. Rohit [Abhijeet Sawant] is an accountant working in an ad agency. An anonymous message asks him to accept a challenge. He does so and he wins Rs. 3 lacs. The wheels of fortune are set in motion. There are more challenges and bigger rewards. In reality, there’s no stopping now. The story takes a turn when Rohit is accused of murder. His life goes upside down…

The film fails on the script level itself. It leaves so many questions unanswered, you actually wonder what was the writer/director thinking when he wrote this script? Direction [Hemant Prabhu] is amateurish. The music is no great shakes either. Abhijeet needs to groom himself completely before he faces the camera next. The two leading ladies, Rucha Gujrathi and Manisha Kelkar, are decent. Sanjay Narvekar has a Nana Patekar hang-up. Mukesh Tiwari is wasted. On the whole, this lottery ticket is best avoided!

‘Dostana’ and ‘Fashion’ brought homosexuality out of the closet. One assumes ‘Straight’ would take it one step ahead. It would look at gays, the relationships, the emotions. It doesn’t. On the contrary, it talks of a person who’s confused of his sexual preferences, one who doesn’t know if he swings or not, is in fact homophobic. ‘Straight’ could’ve explored all this and more beautifully, without getting preachy, but unfortunately, there’s no dum in the screenplay. It’s dry and dreary and goes on and on and on...

and ends up being a boring exercise. In the midst of central London, a successful Indian restaurant called ‘Gaylord’ is run by a Londoner of Indian origin called Pinu [Vinay Pathak]. A simple soul at heart, Pinu has many complexes -- a special one being that he is a virgin and has experienced no intimacy with a woman. After a failed and humiliating experience when Pinu went to India to have an arranged marriage to a traditional girl who finally dumped him at the altar and eloped with her lover, Pinu is

broken and disheartened. One day, a young Indian called Kamles [Anuj Chaudhary] comes to his restaurant and asks for a job as a stand-up comedian. Pinu initially refuses, but finally lets him join as a cook, who also does a stand-up act in the evenings. On the same day, he hires a new cashier Renu [Gul Panag], a young art student from India, who has a passion for caricatures. Life changes dramatically for Pinu as ‘Gaylord’ begins to transform... One fine day, Kamles win a lottery and as he goes to hug Pinu in his excite-

is absolutely bland. There’s a flicker of hope in the second hour. A few sequences are interestingly handled, but what gets served eventually and the time it takes to reach the culmination, the entire journey is so yawn-inducing. Parvati disappoints this time. Given the fact that the writing lacks meat, there’s little that she can do to salvage the show. Music is another drawback. It’s more of an intruder. Cinematography too is inconsistent. Vinay Pathak does his job earnestly, but why take off the shirt again and again? Why this

need to show off Vinay’s hairy chest? Gul Panag is likable and enacts her part well. Anuj Chaudhary is okay, but it remains unexplained till the end whether he’s gay or straight. That’s one of the reasons why his relationship with Vinay is least convincing. There should’ve been some clarity on this issue. Siddharth Kakkar is alright. Rasik Dave and Ketaki Dave provide some laughs. On the whole, ‘Straight’ is as confused as the protagonist in the film. Disappointing!


CHANTING THE HANUMAN CHALISA AT A ROCK CONCERT Recently, Vipul Shah’s London Dreams promos ran into trouble with the censor board as it had Salman Khan chanting the Hanuman Chalisa during a rock concert. It was only when the producer-director approached the tribunal that the promos were cleared. A source said, “The censor board felt that chanting the Hanuman Chalisa during a rock concert might hurt some religious sentiments so they asked Vipul to change the visuals. Vipul, who thought otherwise, approached the revising committee, who too turned him down. So Vipul went to Delhi and approached the tribunal, which accepted his point of view and passed the promos.”

Vipul Shah confirmed the news and said, “Lord Hanuman is also known as Sankat Mochan, which means one who puts an end to all problems. In the film, Salman plays a simpleminded Punjabi, who believes that chanting the Hanuman Chalisa will put an end to the problem he is facing. As expected, everything turns positive for him and his rock band. Since these days everything is a bit sensitive, the censor board raised objections. However, the tribunal, which is a higher body, found no reason why the promos should be changed. That’s where we got the clearance from. After that, we had to again approach the censor board in Mumbai and only then

were the promos cleared. It was a bit of a process but we have got the certificate now. The promos will be aired soon.” Vinayak Azad, regional officer, censor board, said, “The examining committee thought that chanting the Hanuman Chalisa during the rock show might not be appropriate. However, the tribunal felt that it has been done with respect. They also directed the applicant (Vipul Shah) to add another visual of the crowd chanting, ‘Bajrang bali ki jai’ in the end. What’s important is that the order has been passed. The tribunal feels that the promo is appropriate and it’s not offensive or disrespectful to any religion.”


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Bollywood News by

Navneet Choujar Back in the 1950s and 60s, few Bollywood star daughters worked in the movies. Nutan and Tanuja, daughters of the famous 1940s heroine Shobhana Samarth, were exceptions rather than the rule. In the 1980s several stars sons —- Sanjay Dutt, Sunny Deol, Kumar Gaurav, Kunal Goswami to name a few — were launched with fanfare. But no star daughters were thrust into showbiz in designer ventures those days. The change gradually took place after the early 1990s as star daughters such as Karisma Kapoor, Kajol, Twinkle Khanna, Rinkie Khanna, and later, Kareena Kapoor and Esha Deol joined the party. Recently Sonia Mehra, daughter of Vinod Mehra, also made her debut in ‘Victoria No 203’s’ flop remake. Shruti Haasan, daughter of Kamal Haasan and Sarika, has just made her debut opposite red hot Imran Khan in adventure thriller, ‘Luck’. After several hiccups, Sonakshi Sinha finally seems to be starting her Bol-

lywood career with Dabangg, starring Salman Khan and Sonu Sood.

Mithran Devanesen, with dancers from the Dance Shoe dance company.

Shakti Kapoor’s daughter Shraddha Kapoor gets off the block with ‘Teen Patti’, also starring Amitabh Bachchan and Ben Kingsley. Sheena Shahabadi, daughter of Sadhana Singh (heroine of ‘Nadiya Ke Paar’), makes her debut in ‘Tere Sang’ being directed by Satish Kaushik. Govinda’s daughter Narmmadaa (that’s not a spelling mistake) Ahuja too is looking for a suitable celluloid project. “When you work with the best directors, your career automatically takes off,” says her father Govinda. Varalakshmi, daughter of actor Sarathkumar will stage a musical dance drama based on a storyline which originally has music from 70s band ‘ABBA’. Following the success of recent Hollywood flickMamma Mia, this stage show will be produced by Hot Shoe Entertainment, which will be headed by Varalakshmi. Jeffrey Vardon will do the choreography and music is direction will be by

Like the Broadway show and the movie, this will also be a dance drama about a daughter who goes in search of her father, after she finds a note left by her mother. The note talks about three men in her mother’s life, and the question is about who the father of the girl is. This storyline forms the crux of the play. This movie will also feature the popular songs from ‘ABBA’ as one of its features. Varalakshmi gives the credit of this idea to her father who encouraged her to remake the popular musical after having watched the show in London.


The Navtarang Lifestyle


The Navtarang Lifestyle


The Navtarang Lifestyle


The Navtarang Lifestyle


The Navtarang Lifestyle - October 2009  

Indo- Fijian Newspaper