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FRIDAY, March 21, 2014 Deadline Approaching For Obama Care Enrollment. Are You Enrolled? Read On Page 18 Or Call 713771-2900.

Vol. 27 No. 12 Friday, March 21, 2014 Published Weekly from Houston 713-774-5140 24 Pages ( 2 sections) 50 cents E-mail:

Five Houston Women honored IIFA projects a strong on International Women’s Day presence in Houston

Bollywood mega-star Vidya Balan joins IIFA on a multi-city promotional tour in the United States

L-R: Sabbas Joseph, Director,Wizcraft International and IIFA, Dr. Kiran Patel, supporter of IIFA, actress Vidya Balan and Rajender Singh, President and Founder, Star Promotion Inc. in Houston. by Shobana Muratee


L-R: International Women’s Day honorees Chitra Divakaruni, Dr. Lakshmy Parameshwaran, Dr. Kalpalatha Guntapalli, Mrs. Leela Krishnamurthy and Dr. Ratna Kumar together honor Chief Guest Mrs. Nandita Harish on the occasion on March 8, 2014 at the Sri Ashtalakshmi Temple in. Photo by Shobana Muratee, VOA. Read report on Page 3.

OUSTON – On Wednesday, March 12 March, 2014 The International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) held its Press Conference at the Westin Galleria as part of its multi-city promotional tour of New York, Houston, Tampa and Orlando from the 11th – 14th of March. Bollywood actress Vidya Balan and Singer, Abhijeet Bhattacharya were in attendance along with Sabbas Joseph, Director, Wizcraft International and IIFA and Dr. Kiran Patel a strong supporter of IIFA to help spread the word about the upcoming IIFA Celebrations presented by Freedom Health. IIFA partnered Star Promotion

Inc on the Houston leg of the US promotional tour. Rajender Singh, President and Founder, Star Promotion Inc., leaders in bringing stellar quality shows to Houston for over two decades was the host of the Press Conference held in Houston. He received the support of Jugal Malani, leading businessman and president of India House Center and Kohinoor Diamonds in making the promotion successful here in Houston. Partnering with IIFA, is immensely prestigious for Star Promotions and is the highest recognition of Singh’s prowess in hosting mega shows. Welcoming the media and guests, Singh commended the efforts of Wizcraft International and IIFA

directors Andre Timmins, Sabbas Joseph, Viraf Sarkari and wished they would bring IIFA to Houston soon. Singh recognized the dignitaries Judge Ravi Sentil and Houston Mayor Pro-Tem Ed Gonzalez who later spoke on the occasion. In his promotional statement, Singh said he was glad that the “Bollywood Oscars” are coming to the Tampa Bay area, “I look forward to it and would like to invite people of Houston, to come and be part of the spectacular IIFA weekend 2014,” he said. The 15th IIFA Weekend 2015 will be held from the 23rd to the 26th of April in Tampa Bay. Continued on Page 16 in Section II of this issue.

ISKCON of Houston Celebrated Gaura Purnima

ISKCON Sunday school children did a delightful skit on Gaura lila on the occasion of Gaura Purnima on Sunday, March 16, 2014. Photos: Thejas K R / Nagaragu Nagalla. Report on Page 6.

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Koshy Thomas Sherly Philip Shobana Muratee Sherine Thomas Jacob David Susan Pothanikat AR Vadlamani Priyan Mathew


Columnists: Legal: Richard M. Alderman Legal: Sharlene Sharmila Richards Legal: Yasmin Kutty Medical: Sabina K. Cherian, MD Medical: Kesavan Shan, MD Research: Prof. Meenakshi Bhattacharjee Health Insurance: Sudhir Mathuria Astrology: Hardik Vyas Online Editor:

Fighting terrorism involves imagining and preparing for the unimaginable. India has a dangerously poor record of doing either ate in the summer of 2012, two young men sat at either end of an Internet connection linking Karachi with Kathmandu, weaving online fantasies. Their dreams, unlike those of most people their age, didn’t centre around music, or money, or love. Muhammad Zarar Siddibapa, alleged to have been the operational head of the Indian Mujahideen’s urban bombing campaign against India, wanted to know if his Karachi-based boss, Riyaz Ahmad Shahbandri, could find him a nuclear bomb. The two men, the National Investigation Agency says, discussed attacking Surat “with nuclear warheads if they could be procured.” It was a meaningless, idle daydream — the kernel from which all hideous nightmares are born. The surreal disappearance of Malaysia Airlines MH370 is a good occasion for Indians to start thinking about what might happen if we are ever compelled to live those nightmares. Bar online speculation as idle as the Indian Mujahideen’s Internet chatter, there’s no reason to think that MH370 was hijacked to stage a 9/11-type attack on an Indian city or nuclear installation. There’s even less reason to think the aircraft might have been fitted with nuclear, biological or chemical weapons. Yet, on the morning of September 11, 2001, there was no good reason at all to believe a terrorist attack involving hijacked jets might bring down the Twin Towers in New York. Threats from the air The fact is, however, that speculation is a useful intellectual tool. MH370, which succeeded in evading detection during its suspected flight across multiple countries, was in range of Indian cities, industrial sites housing toxic chemicals and nuclear facilities — which necessitates asking the question, “what if”? Fighting terrorism involves imagining and preparing for the unimaginable: and India has a dangerously poor record of doing either. Though the prospect of a terrorist group acquiring nuclear weapons or radiological assets remains small, Indian nuclear installations remain at risk from aircraft used as weapons. Though newer nuclear reactors have double-domed concrete

Shobana Muratee

All rights reserved. No material herein or portions thereof may be published without the consent of the publisher. Voice of Asia assumes no liability resulting from action taken based on the information included herein. Published weekly by Free Press LLC, 8303 SW Freeway, Suite # 325, Houston, TX 77074. Tel: 713-774-5140. Fax: 713-7745143. Email for editorial submissions:; Email for advertising inquiries and submissions: ads@

For the latest on South Asia and Community stories Visit our website Voice of Asia (USPS 010-215) (ISSN#10705058) is published every Friday (for a subscription rate of $30 per year) by Free Press LLC, 8303 SW Freeway, Suite # 325, Houston, TX 77074. Tel: 713-774-5140. Fax: 713774-5143. Periodical postage paid at Houston, Texas. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Voice of Asia, 8303 SW Freeway, Suite # 325, Houston, TX 77074 It is the policy of Voice of Asia to publish letters to the editor which evidence a variety of viewpoints. The opinions expressed in any particular letter to the editor are not necessarily those of the management. Voice of Asia welcomes letters in reply to issues raised in letters to editor. In as much letters to the editor are not articles written or researched by members of Voice of Asia, it is not the policy of the Voice of Asia to perform any investigation or confirmation of any facts or allegations contained in letters to the editor. Moreover, Voice of Asia reserves the right to edit letters to the editor as necessary to correct errors of fact, punctuation, spelling and to comply with space constraints. - The Publisher

FRIDAY, March 21, 2014

MH370: India’s wake-up call structures, in theory capable of withstanding a direct hit, there are obvious reasons to avoid testing the engineering in the real world. In the wake of 9/11, New Delhi promulgated nofly regulations around several nuclear facilities. However, the scholar, Sitakanta Mishra noted in a 2009 paper for the Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies, the rules “have not been strictly implemented.” “Surprisingly,” he wrote, “even today, aircrafts can fly over the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre.” It isn’t only nuclear installations that are at risk. There have, government sources say, been repeated restricted air space violations over New Delhi, each a potential threat to critical targets like Parliament, defence and intelligence complexes, the President’s estate and the Prime Minister’s home and office. None reached crisis-point — but there is little clarity on what would happen if they did. Air Force sources familiar with air-defence systems at these facilities say one key problem is pre-delegation — instructions for when commanders on the ground can use lethal force against a potential threat. Had MH370 appeared on radar screens guarding Indian nuclear installations, officials up the chain of command would have had minutes to make a decision — knowing all the while that it might be the wrong one. There has never been an explicit political mandate for the exact

circumstances in which these choices could be made. For military planners, the dilemmas involved in such decisions are significant. In 1983, the Soviet Union shot down a Korean Airlines Boeing 747 flying from New York to Seoul. The flight’s malfunctioning autopilot system had, subsequent international investigations revealed, led it into the strategically crucial Kamchatka Peninsula, raising Soviet fears that it might be a hostile aircraft. Declassified Soviet documents show that the commander of the Soviet Far East District Air Defense Forces, General Valery Kamensky, wanted the aircraft destroyed — but only after it was positively identified not to be civilian. His subordinate, General Anatoly Kornukov, commander of Sokol Air base, disagreed. “What civilian,” the documents show him exclaiming, “[It] has flown over Kamchatka! It [came] from the ocean without identification. I am giving the order to attack if it crosses the State border.” Minutes later, a Sukhoi 15 interceptor fired Kaliningrad K-8 air-to-air missiles at the Korean Airlines jet: 246 passengers and 23 crew died. During the run-up to the New Delhi Commonwealth Games, intelligence officials repeatedly discussed the prospect of an attack on a high-profile target using either hijacked aircraft or a remotely-piloted drone fitted

with explosives. The Air Force took charge of surveillance, but no firm decision was taken on precisely what events would trigger an armed intervention. Flailing on the seas To this day, India does not have a central command centre, where military, intelligence and civilian officials can observe and liaise on real time threats — and take a decision when needed. In emergencies, power rests with the Crisis Management Group, chaired by the Cabinet Secretary. This mechanism allows for effective decision-making after a crisis — but is useless when there are minutes, not hours, to take a call. In the summer of 2011, a rusting ship floated gently towards Mumbai’s Juhu beach, unnoticed almost until it nudged the shore. The Pavit, a 1,000-tonne Panama-flagged merchant ship that had been abandoned by its crew and reported sunk, had drifted through Indian waters for more than a hundred hours, undetected by the Navy, the Coast Guard and spanking-new police patrol boats purchased after 26/11. The dangers were unmistakable: the ship could have been carrying terrorists or explosive or toxic chemicals, each with the potential to kill thousands. It isn’t only in the air, the story shows, that India’s borders remain vulnerable. (The Hindu).


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FRIDAY, March 21, 2014

Second Front Page

Friday, March 21, 2014


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Five Houston Women honored on International Women’s Day

Chief Guest Nandita Harish lights the lamp

Musical performance by Keerthana and Kruthim, accompanied by Vikram Murali and Arjun Vijay Kumar

by Shobana Muratee SUAGR LAND - It wasn’t surprising when the five women who were being honored on International Women’s Day on Sunday, March 8, 2014, reflected upon their mothers, recounting their sacrifices and endeavors and how they impacted each of their lives and careers. Houston’s five distinguished women: Dr. Kalpalata Guntapalli, Dr. Lakshmi Parameshwaran, Dr. Ratna Kumar, Chitra Divakaruni, and Leela Krishnamurthy who have excelled in their areas of expertise, won numerous accolades and also contributed to the community were chosen by the American Telugu Association (ATA), Volunteer Together for Sewa (VT Sewa) and Sri Ashtalakshmi Temple to be honored on that day. This year’s international women’s day theme was ‘Inspiring Change’, encouraging advocacy for women’s advancement everywhere and in every way. At a select gathering of about 50 people, for distinguished women from greatest

professions would recognized for their contribution to their fields and as women par excellence as professionals, mothers, workers and social actors. Chief Guest Nandita Harish, wife of Consul General of India, Houston, Hon. Parvataneni Harish, lit the lamp as invocation prayers were led by temple priest Sri Hanumanchary. This was followed by Carnatic music program by Keerthana and Kruthi, students and daughters of Smt. Raja Rajeshwary Bhatt. They were accompanied by Vikram Murali on violin and Arjun Vijay Kumar on mridangam. Honoree Dr. Kalpalata: she spoke on women in medicine and narrated history dating back 150 years (1865), when she mentioned Anandibai, the first woman to have graduated medicine school, was married at the age of nine and was the mother at the age of 14 years. Unfortunately, she lost the child and that had a remarkable influence on her and she wanted to bring about the change and give medical

care to those who needed. She pursued to study in the US medical school but was asked to convert to Christianity to acquire a seat which was not an option for her. As destiny would have it at the age of 17 she landed in the US met with her sponsor Mrs. Carpenter and applied to the women’s medical college in Pennsylvania . She graduated three years later at the age of 20 and went to India but unfortunately died a year later of TB. She is the first Indian medical graduate in USA. Anandibai epitomizes courage of a women ‘And she is my professional hero, my personal heroe is my mother who was married at the age of nine, was mother of five children, one son and four daughters all of who have medical doctors,” Dr. Guntapalli recounted. “My father educated my mother and she completed her Masters degree and retired as a principal of the school in India, she told. “For the women, unlike men it takes a lot of stars line up to be successful in anything. You need your

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personal health, your spouse’s health, your children’s health. And for some reason the gods are smiling on you and give you all those things you got to give something back to the society,” was her earnest message. Receiving the honors, Leela Krishnamurthy said, “You may know me, as I have been wearing different hats and chasing people for funds since I have been a volunteer for great causes like the Habitat for Humanity, UNICEF, IACF, Shankaranetralaya,”she mentioned. She recalled how her mother had imbibed in her the quality of giving when she would celebrate her birthdays by feeding the poor. Another well know honoree, Dr. Ratna Kumar, director of Samskriti remembered her mother on the occasion and felt that she was the rightful owner of the recognition. She thanked her for thinking out-of-the-box allowing her to pursue a nontraditional profession of classical dancer. “Everybody needs a role model, somebody to look up to I didn’t have to look very far, my mother was my role model most dynamic she taught us tenacity never to quit,” she said. Award winning author, Chitra Divakaruni Banerjee said that for a woman to be successful, she would need the support of parents, community, and husband. “As a

writer I thank the community for supporting my writing. I have worked with Daya and commend their effort,” she said. Honoree and Daya’s founder Lakshmy Parameshwaran spoke about Daya, a nonprofit organization serving women for the last 18 years. “We get calls from outside Houston in other culture sensitive places like Oklahoma, Kansas. Last year we served 310 clients and it is increasing by 17% every month,” she reported. Emcee Dr . Ranga presented a video on the honorees, “They truly achieved so much that is impossible to summarize few slides but we have provided you with the team support, what each has done for the community,” he said. Chief Guest Nadita Harish immensely lauded the work of Daya and praised all the honorees for their achievements. “Daya deserves our support and our commitment for their work to alleviate the suffering of women in their safest sanctuary, their homes,” she said. “We live in an age where our work is increasingly measured in terms of economic contributions we make. This is an unfortunate reality for this era of globalization and economic independence. This is not limited to people but also extends to community and the nations. In terms of human pursuits

of Dharma, Artha, Kama and Moksha, (The four basic ends (purusharthas) of human life, as recognized by the Hindu philosophy) more often than not the first and the last are either underrepresented or absent. Bangar Reddy, president of Jeeyar Education Trust-USA and ATA director outlined the activities of the organizations and said that International Women’s Day was the signature event of ATA. Dr.Lalitha Sunder, a Cardiologist from the Memorial City area spoke about the changing face of Cardivascular disease in women. Previously, cardiovascular disease was considered predominantly a disease of the males but recently the trend has changed and now women are equally susceptible. She also specifically spoke about the risk of cardiovascular disease in Asian Indians and certain genetic characteristics that make them more susceptible. Then, Mrs. Uma Medi spoke about the history of Women since the Vedic times leading up to the current day. This was followed by a surprise felicitation of Dr.Renu Tamirisa, a leading force in Sri Ashtalakshmi Temple and the Director of Prajna Vedic school that is run under the direct guidance of His Holiness Sri Chinna Jeeyar Swamiji. Following that was a beautiful talk by a disciple of Sri Chinna jeeyar Swamiji and a Vedic scholar, Sarada Sripada who said that this was not a celebration of Women’s Day by of a Women’s Era. Finally, American Telugu Association made a few announcements followed by a beautiful presentation of the activities of VT Seva (Volunteering together for service), a Non profit organization that does immense service to Women in the field of Cancer prevention and cure. Bangar Reddy, President of Jeeyar Educational Trust gave a vote of thanks and a sumptuous dinner followed.



FRIDAY, March 21, 2014

South Indian appointed as The People’s Lawyer Municipal Judge Richard M. Alderman Interim Dean of the Law Center

You can’t keep money you receive by mistake Q. Do I have to give money back to a bank that gave me $50 too much? I went to a drive-thru window to make a credit card payment. When I left, I realized they gave me to much money back. I immediately returned in good faith to give back the overpayment, but the teller said everything was fine, “I was not overpaid.” Can I keep the money? A. This is an interested twist on what would otherwise be a simple legal question. As you seem to know, you have no legal right to keep money you receive by mistake. You did the right thing by offering to return the money. But when the teller said there was no mistake and the amount you received was correct, my opinion is that you have no further legal obligation to convince them that they over-paid you. Of course, if they discover the mistake and ask for the return of the money, you must return it. Q. I have a will that was prepared some time ago. It is not notarized. Is it still valid? A. In Texas, a printed or form will is valid if it is signed and witnessed by two witnesses. A “holographic will,” one written entirely in your own handwriting, is valid as long as it is signed. There is no requirement that any will be notarized. Having said that, however, there are two things in your question that suggest you might want to get a new will prepared. First, you say the will was prepared “some time ago.” I am not sure how long ago “some time” is, but it may be a good idea to get a new updated will. Both the law and your situation may have changed. Second, although a will does not have to be notarized to be valid, it should be notarized to make it easier and less costly to probate. My suggestion is to get a new will with a “self-proving affidavit,” the formal name for the notary’s statement. Q. I would like to know what we can do about a debt collector that continually calls our house. The collector is not looking for anyone in my household, but is asking about a relative, my uncle. We have stated that the uncle does not live in our household and we don’t know where he is. We told the collector to stop calling our home immediately. His response was he would continue to call us because he has our number and thinks we know where my uncle is. One time he asked for the last 4 digits of my social security number to confirm I was not the person they were trying to contact. Is there anything I can do? A. I suggest you first review the debt collection section on my website listed at the end of this column. Under a federal law called the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, it is unlawful for a debt collector to contact anyone except the debtor, unless it is to obtain location information about another person. In other words, it is legal to call you to ask if you know where your uncle is. In my opinion, however, once you told the debt collector that your uncle was not at your house and you didn’t know where he was, the collector cannot call again. Under this law, you could be entitled to $1,000 in statutory damages if you were to sue in justice court. Let the collector know you know about this law and will consider a lawsuit if he calls again. You also should file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. Q. I was not married at the time my son was born. I have since married his mother. How can I get the birth certificate to show I am the father? A. If you are the parent of a child and not named on the child’s birth certificate you can change the birth certificate to include your name. This link provides the form used to change the birth certificate. The form can be processed with both parents providing notarized signatures or one notarized parent signature and a court order stating that the parent being added to the birth certificate is the child’s parent. For a copy of the form go to: reqproc/amendparentage.shtm

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USTIN, TX - After almost 10 years of being a prosecutor, he was appointed as a Judge to the Municipal Court of the City of Austin in 2014. He is the first Indian-American judge in Travis County history. Judge Thomas has been active in a variety of local civic and political organizations in the Austin-area for several years because as he stated “I believe that the best way for

any group to guarantee that their concerns are addressed by the community is to make sure that they become an engaged and active part of the community.” Born in New York City, and raised in Houston, George C. Thomas graduated from Trinity University in San Antonio in 1998 with a B.S. in Biology and a B.A. in History. He then earned his law degree

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“Financial Considerations in a Texas Marriage” By Yasmin Kutty, Divorce Attorney,

Yasmin Kutty What should I consider from a legal standpoint prior to and during marriage? A couple should fully disclose their financial information prior to marriage. There should be a mutual understanding of what each person earns, how much is in savings, how much credit card debt exists, and if either party owns any property. Further, parties should continue to disclose and discuss all of their financial information during the marriage. Marriage is a union based on trust. What is separate property? Separate property is property purchased prior to the marriage. Examples include a home, land, money, or capital appreciation of separate prop-

erty. What is community property? Any property acquired after the date of marriage with the exception of a gift or inheritance. Examples include income from either spouse, a home, land, capital appreciation of community property or separate property. Is it always clear cut as to what is community property and what is separate property? No it is not. In the context of divorce proceedings the presumption is that everything is community property. The burden of proof is on the spouse who is claiming separate property. The lines between separate and community property can become blurred. For example, if you buy property prior to marriage and pay off the loan for the purchase with your income or your spouse’s income after the marriage, that income utilized to pay down the loan

is community property. As a result, your spouse may have a claim for reimbursement for an equitable portion of the decrease in principal from the date of marriage to the date of the divorce. What can I do to protect my separate property prior to marriage? You may want to consider a prenuptial agreement to protect certain assets; or in the alternative just educate yourself by consulting an attorney on what steps you need to take to preserve your separate property prior to entering the marriage. Disclaimer: All data and information provided in this article is for informational purposes only. makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, suitability, or validity of information on this site. The information should not be construed as legal advice.

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FRIDAY, March 21, 2014


Friday, March 21, 2014


Tel: 713-774-5140

The Ultimate Electric Karma Experience For Your Wedding

Therese Cole Hubbs by Shobana Muratee


herese Cole-Hubbs does not believe in shortcuts, certainly not when it comes to something as sensitive and sentimental as a wedding. President and Creative Director of Houston-based Electric Karma International, Cole-Hubbs is among the nation’s leading event planning and coordinating experts for multi-cultural weddings. Creator of over 600 memorable weddings spanning over 28 years, Cole-Hubbs is the undisputed leader in her profession today particularly in ethnic weddings. Over the years, she has acquired thorough knowledge of cultures, cuisine, costumes and traditions which gives her that edge over others in the field. While she prides herself on her expertise at producing the most elaborate and exquisite South Asian weddings, she’s driven by challenges involving a fusion of dreams and traditions. Family Values and Traditions Born into a Polish family, ColeHubbs draws family values from her own life’s experiences and from her close-knit family. Long drawn out ceremonies as seen in South Asian weddings do not irk her. In fact, she feels that the young people today are drifting further away from such traditions. “They’re getting too Americanized,” she commented in her interview with Voice of Asia, “cutting down the ceremonies from three to four hours to just an hour long.” And that’s where she believes she makes a difference. “I talk to the brides and grooms about the importance of ceremonies because without significant pieces it is not a marriage, it’s like just another party,” she says and so feels compelled to bring back the finer elements into the weddings she coordinates. Cole-Hubbs, is more than a wedding coordinator, she is a designer with a vision. She methodically lays out a foreplan that incorporates every detail of that


– A Journey Into Desi Weddings’ by author Therese Cole-Hubbs is a remarkable portrayal of the finer details of the intricate South Asian, Desi weddings. The book was first launched at the Love and Sunshine Conference in Miami, Florida where she was a speaker along with stalwarts like Preston Bailey, on October 20th 2013. It was the #1 Best Seller at the Special Events Conference in Nashville where she did a book signing as well. In Texas she held a book signing event at the Blu Restaurant in Sugar Land on February 11, 2014 where she recognized her vendors, caterers, DJs, friends and families that contributed to her book. Her next book signing will be at the Events Solutions, a national industry conference in Las Vegas. The impelling glossy cover draws one into the realm of dreams of thirty couples whose dream weddings are featured. Each stands apart for its unique theme and mood: Magical to Meaningful, Exhilarating to Exquisite, Regal to Rousing, they all carry the indelible Electric Karma touch. Each creation depicted in 189 pages is a testament of Cole-Hubbs’s immense talent and expertise as a creator and

which is expected of her by her brides and grooms. Accessibility is the key to her unbridled bonding with couples. It is endearing to learn how deeply she gets involved and soon becomes a part of the family. “My brides have total access to me and I share a very close relationship with them like a family. I know when it’s their anniversaries, when they are having their babies. Every coordinator is not blessed with that kind of experience,” she says. Five Fundamentals Hospitality takes precedence for Cole-Hubbs. She strongly believes that although there are many different aspects to a wedding the one most cherished is hospitality. Planning how the buffet is going to run is crucial because long lines at buffets are not hospitable. Equally important are food, beverages, entertainment and décor. They are all interwoven and are ways of showing hospitality. Selection of the right cuisine and its presentation could enhance or impair the decor. In her newly released book ‘Shaadi - A Journey Into Desi Weddings,’ Cole-Hubbs writes ‘how one wedding orchestrated a dramatic draped reveal to introduce over 60 buffet creations’. Entertainment can be very challenging especially at a Desi (Indian) wedding where families that originate from the northern and southern India like Punjabis, Gujaratis, Rajastanis, Bengalis, Tamilians, Telugus, Kannadigas, are each distinctively unique in their character, language and culture. But Cole-Hubbs has that covered too. Bangra, Garba, and Dandia Raas (popular regional dances of India) are a regular feature in her Sangeet (song and dance segments). She understands the influence Bollywood cinema on South Asians and friends like DJ Yogi-G, co-host of Generasia Radio, keep her abreast of the latest trends. In fact, some weddings were inspired by Bollywood themes. When it comes to décor, ColeHubbs makes no compromises. It

producer of dreamy weddings. Why did you really choose India the theme for your book? It chose me. Indian to me is the most creative way of expressing who I am and who the couple is. They interest me to come up with these amazing ideas. So much part of my job is not about coordination, anybody can coordinate a wedding. My job is to woo out of the bride her dreams. Dreams are sometimes very defined and sometimes not very defined, some brides have been dreaming of their wedding all their lives while others may have been concentrating on the school, jobs and career. So I have to create a production of these dreams and make it worthy of the couple. In doing this I take many things into consideration: like what part of the country they come from, their background, and their expectation. It can’t be a cookie-cutter process. You have to sit in the seat of the guest to see what they are seeing and experiencing. It’s about their emotions and every single thing has a bearing on it. What inspired you to do this particular book on weddings? A couple of reasons and one of them is to be able to give back to our community. We don’t believe that it is just about us, we believe that it is a team effort and we have

The Mandap is the main focus in Electric Karma weddings. Photo Credit Harvard Photography. could be her 600+ wedding, but she still treats it like as her first and brings in the best. Her impeccable negotiating skills come as a surprise to her Indian Americans clients who claim to be the toughest. With her vast experience and knowledge coupled with her connections with the vendors, she settles for only the best at the most reasonable price. Cole-Hubbs maintains high standards of work ethics. Besides the honesty and integrity which she expects from her vendors, she is strictly against kickbacks and does not encourage soliciting at her events. Which is why hiring a professional is advantageous to help weed out the bad and prevent loses. Budget is an integral part of a wedding planner. Asked if Electric Karma was an expensive affair she says, “Frankly, that’s not my primary concern. What matters

to me is the trust that my couples have in me.” And although ColeHubbs has conducted the most lavish weddings of Houston’s rich and famous as the likes of Aku Patel, Mona Bhagya, and Swantantra Jain, she has never turned down anyone even if it was $5000 budget. In selecting vendors, she usually offers her clients three referrals that best fit their budget. Most of her clientele are referrals and a good word means the world to her. Last year, Electric Karma conducted 47 weddings and this year finished 37 weddings already. A team of trusted senior coordinators like Shirish Krishnana assist her when she is traveling and speaking at national conferences, conducting workshops and seminars or book signing. Personally she does one wedding per weekend but oversees all of the weddings to ensure that the Electric Karma touch is there.

Cole Hubbs and husband Hal Hubbs run a fulltime catering company in Houston, the ASC Event Services, Inc. located at 10510 Harwin Dr, Houston, TX 77036, which provides sumptuous affordable catering and is the Pinnacle Winner - BBB Awards for Excellence. Cole- Hubbs is Director of Chapter Formation, WIPA (Wedding Industry Professionals Association), Advisory Board Member of TISOH (The International School of Hospitality) and Member of NACE (National Association of Catering and Events). A successful entrepreneur, bestselling author, distinguished speaker, Cole-Hubbs believes in sharing her knowledge and experience. Her simplicity and down-to-earth nature is her crowning glory. Her sincere advice to the future brides and grooms is: “Bring a coordinator before you sign a contract, even before you get a venue!”

credited all the vendors in the book and on an electronic version we have links to their website. The other reason is to have something that brides can look at, a wedding manual of ideas and inspirations because there are no books out there for them. The Mandap is the main focus in each of the pages because a marriage without traditions is just another party and we have to keep on bringing that to our youth to bring back that value of the ceremony. Doing this for 28 years I have seen it change from very strict traditions where you had to have the Mandap in a certain way and auspicious time was respected, How many brides today, even parents, practice this. What matters to you the most the institution of marriage or the function? A little bit of both. I love the Hindu ceremony. I do Muslim weddings as well. I just did a Jewish Indian wedding this past weekend so I do believe in the sanctity of marriage, and I believe that the whatever you do and say in your marriage, you have to respect it and to live up to it. Complete with glossary of terms pertaining to Hindu, Islamic and Knanya Catholic rituals and traditions, the book is priced at US $71. For more details visit www.

Cover of the book SHAADI -A Journey Into Desi Weddings’. Photo Credit Erik Clausen


FRIDAY, March 21, 2014


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byKusum Vyas Hindu Climate Change Ambassador, Founder of the Green Kumbh Movement Gentle breeze, blowing from the south, softens the chilly air of the winter. The land comes to life as the flora suddenly bursts into maturity and young flowers bloom all over. The air is filled with intoxicating smell of fresh flowers and the effect is seen even on the cuckoo which is in an inebriated state”. Indian Poet Kalidasa on Vasanta Ritu (The Spring Season) Spring! It’s that time of the year when Mother Nature’s energy has awoken from its winter slumbers, bringing hope, growth and a riot of vivacious colors to herald the new beginning. Come March 17, many communities around the world will come together to welcome one of this most beautiful seasons of the year with the festival of colors known as Holi or Phagwah in the Indo-Caribbean Hindu community. Often described as a festival more beautiful than meets the eye, images of cheerful folks covered head to toe in colored powder are now a universal impression of Holi and form the heart of the joyous Spring Festival of Colors.

What’s so special about this celebration? First, because Holi is one of the most popular and ancient festivals in India. References to Holi are found in ancient paintings and murals and in sculptures on walls of ancient Hindu temples. A panel sculpted in the 7th Cen-

FRIDAY, March 21, 2014

Don’t be Offended if I splash You with Color, it’s Holi - Bura Na Mano, Holi Hai! tury temple at Hampi, capital of Vijayanagar, shows a joyous scene of Holi. The carved sculpture depicts a Prince and his Princess standing amidst maids waiting with syringes or ‘ pichkaris ‘ to drench the Royal couple in colors. The tradition has continued uninterrupted for a millennia. In India, while they share prayer and sumptuous food, the best part is the ritual of taking to the streets and splashing friends and even total strangers with dry colors, water balloons, sprayers and even, dousing them with entire buckets of colored water. On this day, everybody, old and young, is fair game. This is the time to relax social codes. The day takes the form of a fun-filled, boisterous celebration where barriers between rich and poor, men and women, young and old are broken down. All are free to throw colors on each other and get pummeled with vibrant bags of colorful powder. It’s a time during which mischievous behavior is not only condoned, but encouraged. Crowds of people playfully pelt each other with painted in mesmerizing hues of blues, yellows, magentas, greens, violets, and more adding a rainbow-like hue to the environment. In India it is common to see kids squirting passers-by with flower-based colorful liquid!

As with all Indian festivals, Holi also has sacred aspects associated with it - a majority centering on triumph of good over evil. The most popular one is about an arrogant king who resents his son Prahlada for worshipping Lord Vishnu, the creator of the Universe. When every attempt to stop him fails, his sister, Holika believed to be immune to fire, joins in the effort, by inviting the young boy to accompany her into a large fire. Helped by the powers of Lord Vishnu, Prahlada escapes unscathed, while Holika burns to ashes. To commemorate this event, huge bonfires are lit the night before Holi to cleanse the air of evil spirits. In the North Indian State of Uttar Pradesh, the festival is attributed to the immortal love between the mischievous fun-loving god Krishna and his devotee Radha. Therefore, people of Braj where he spent most of his life, celebrate it with great gusto for almost two weeks! While history and circumstances may have flung many Indians to the farthest reaches of the globe, they remain undiminished in their enthusiasm for festivals and rituals that define home. Wherever Indian Diaspora lives in sizeable numbers, Holi is the same jamboree of myriad colors as in India. However, whenever Holi falls in the middle of working week, the Indian expatriate community celebrates the festival on a



weekend closest to the actual date. It is perfectly natural for Indians living in the West to be overcome with nostalgia when major festivals like Holi come around. Some hold on to their Indian roots and strive hard to keep up the tradition with religious fervor and put effort into passing on the legacy to their children. For others it is a day filled with fun, good food and an abundance of nostalgia in

the midst of a riotous crowd stomping to either heavy bhangra beat in the background or the all-time favorite Bollywood Holi song, “Rang Barase…” While Holi is primarily rooted in Hindu traditions of India and Nepal the festival has, in recent times, become universally popular with non-Hindus of every culture and age group worldwide. Come March 17, cities and towns across the world will once again burst with color as

we welcome the joy of Spring. Thanks to the internet and social media, now it’s easier than ever to locate a Holi celebration at a temple, university town square or public park near you. Be sure to prepare yourself for an exuberant show of goodwill, cheer, thick with clouds of color and, yes – plenty of good food. A word of caution for those who want to keep their clothes clean: Even if you stand back and away from the crowd, you are fair game for the kids and you may get some of that color splattered on your clothes! But then, as they say in India, “Bura Na Mano, Holi hai— don’t be offended, it’s Holi!

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Vol. 27

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Friday, March 21, 2014

by Ammu KANNAMPILLY ALEKHU - Sita Pariyar had barely recovered from childbirth when her uterus slipped out of her body, making her one of hundreds of thousands of Nepalese women struck by a debilitating reproductive condition. Sleep-deprived and unsteady on her feet, Pariyar was carrying firewood home to her village in the hilly district of Dhading on the outskirts of Nepal’s capital Kathmandu when she felt her uterus collapse. “It was painful and terrifying. I had no idea what was happening,” the 25-year-old mother of four told AFP. Uterine prolapse, a condition which sees the uterus or womb descend into and protrude out of the vagina, usually strikes post-menopausal women. In Nepal, however, 44 percent of cases involve women in their twenties, according to UN data. A recent report by Amnesty International blames widespread gender discrimination in the predominantly rural Himalayan nation for the unusually high incidence of uterine prolapse among young Nepalese women. “It’s high time it is seen as a human rights issue, not just a women’s health issue,” Madhu Malhotra, director of Amnesty’s Gender, Sexuality and Identity Programme, told AFP. A 2011 health ministry survey said uterine prolapse was the “most frequently reported cause of poor health among women of reproductive age”, affecting about one in 10 Nepalese women. Pariyar, whose impoverished Dalit family lies at the bottom of Nepal’s caste system, had little rest during her pregnancies or after childbirth, when she was expected to do everything from cutting wood and feeding cattle to farming and housework. By the time she was 20, she was a mother to three girls and faced unrelenting pressure from her husband and his family to give birth to a son. “My husband would get drunk, beat me and threaten to marry again, all because I couldn’t give him a son,” she recalled. When she finally gave birth at home to a boy four years ago, her relief was short-lived. Two weeks later, she experienced heavy bleeding and shortly after, her uterus prolapsed.


Section 2

Nepal’s young women endure painful ‘fallen womb’ syndrome

Nepalese women Sita Pariyar (L) and Madhuri Thakuri speak during an interview with AFP in Malekhu, Dhading district, some 80 km from Kathmandu, on February 26, 2014 (AFP Photo/Prakash Mathema)

the condition makes many women hesitant to seek help. Binda Dhamala suffered uterine prolapse in her twenties. Since then the 49-year-old villager’s condition has worsened to the point where her uterus protrudes, making it impossible for her to work, walk or even sit comfortably. Ten years ago, her daughter, Madhuri Thakuri experienced a sharp pain when her uterus prolapsed.

“Every time I cough, urine seeps out,” she said. “I am always worried it is going to fall out. It hurts so much and I feel dirty and embarrassed all the time,” Thakuri, now 28, told AFP. Such stories are familiar to Aruna Uprety, a Kathmandu-based expert on public health who has spent more than two decades working with uterine prolapse patients. “It strikes younger women because they are malnourished, married off early and have babies at an age when their bodies can’t handle it. “Most of them deliver at home, where traditional birthing practices can also damage the uterus,” Uprety told AFP. - ‘Nepal’s shame’ Many women in Nepal do not have easy access to healthcare and rarely get time to recover from childbirth before being expected to work in the fields. In 2008, Nepal’s Supreme Court called the high incidence of uterine prolapse a violation of reproductive rights and ordered the government to act quickly. The state responded by promoting, and in some cases, funding hysterectomies. But campaigners say surgeries should only be suggested in advanced cases, and that a surgeryfocused drive may actually make younger women, hoping to get pregnant, more reluctant to seek help. Inexpensive alternatives -- such as a silicone ring pessary, a device that supports the uterus -- or preventive measures are not given their due, doctor Uprety said. “It is Nepal’s shame that in the 21st century so many young women are suffering so much,” she said. “And we still don’t have extensive national data so we may only have hit the tip of the iceberg.”

READ COMMUNITY CALENDAR ON: Director of Amnesty International - Gender, Identity and Sexuality, Madhu Malhotra, pictured during an interview with AFP, in Kathmandu, on February 19, 2014 (AFP Photo/Prakash Mathema)

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Young Life


Friday, March 21, 2014

Section 2

FRIDAY, March 21, 2014


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4 Reasons That Young Adults Won’t Sign Up for the Affordable Care Act

Harvard Business School Dean at Ekal Vidyalaya “Power of Education Forum”

by Napala Pratini, NerdWallet (ABC News, March 1, 2014 )

Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation” (EVF-USA) , an organization that brings education to millions of underprivileged children in remote rural & tribal parts of India, recently hosted a “Power of Education Forum” at the Hyatt Regency in Cambridge, MA. It brought academicians, entrepreneurs, community leaders of stellar credentials together, to explore various avenues under “Ekal” to empower neglected millions through state-of-the Art technology and techniques.


he U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has released data showing that 55 percent of Americans who enrolled in plans under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in the first three months were between the ages of 45 and 64. The report from January showed a whopping one-third of enrollees were aged 55 and older—people just shy of coverage under Medicare, and more likely to get sick or to have pre-existing health conditions. Only 24 percent of the 2.2 million who have signed up are between the ages of 18 and 34, well below the Obama administration’s target of around 40 percent. A new study on the cost of insurance for young adults reveals why young adults may opt out of purchasing health insurance through the marketplace. 1. Most young adults are in the “healthy majority” Adults aged 18 to 34 and without health problems are called “young invincibles” for a reason. According to a report by the Centers for Disease Control, less than a quarter of adults ages 18 to 29 said they visited an emergency room during a one-year period, and only 7 percent stayed overnight at the hospital. Just 4.2 percent of people in this age group report their heath to be fair or poor—meaning the remaining 95.8 percent claim that their health is good, very good or excellent. An additional 30 percent will not even see a doctor once in the year. This “healthy majority” who rarely access care have good reason to think twice before purchasing insurance. 2. Being healthy doesn’t entitle you to a big break on insurance costs

Prior to the ACA, older and/ or unhealthy adults could be charged more than five times what young, healthy adults were for health insurance premiums. The ACA limits this “age-rating” ratio to three— that is, older or unhealthy individuals can be charged only up to three times what the young and healthy pay. This is great news for those suffering from illness, because it means they will be able to get more affordable insurance that covers all of their health problems. Young invincibles, however, get the short end of the stick. One study estimates a median rate increase of 237 percent for young invincibles (without taking premium assistance into account). 3. Emergencies don’t necessarily cost less with insurance Many young invincibles wisely worry about going uninsured and risking massive bills following a trip to the emergency room. A recent study on insurance costs for young adults, however, predicts that being insured will cost upwards of $700 more for individuals who visit the ER. This is because most insurance plans require the policyholder to meet a deductible before benefits kick in. For this reason, the study estimates an uninsured young adult who visits the ER once in 2014 will pay $2,022 in annual out-of-pocket expenses. Meanwhile, an insured young adult will see a total 2014 bill of $2,791, including premiums and out-of-pocket expenses to cover the ER visit. This estimate takes into account the penalty that the uninsured will pay, as well as the cost of physician office visits throughout the year for both the insured and the uninsured. 4. For the healthy majority, being uninsured is 5 times cheaper than being insured Assuming no major medi-

Dr. Nitin Nohria, Dean of Harvard Business School, in his opening remarks at the event said, “The power of education allows you in the end to accomplish things that you yourself would not have dreamt possible. In many ways, the reason why I stand here today as the part of Ekal movement is that it allows millions of people in India to have that right to dream”

Dr. Nitin Nohria, Dean of Harvard Business School

Following welcome Ranjani Saigal, the Executive Director and Vinod Jhunjhunwala, President of EVF-USA made introductory remarks about the organization, its objectives and its recent accomplishments. At panel discussion titled “Ekal in the 21st Century – New Opportunities” Dr. Subra Dravida, Sr. Director at Qualcomm analyzed opportunities that technology can bring to improve the quality of education, healthcare and micro-entrepreneurship in rural areas. Dr. Anantha Chan-

drakasan, Head of Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT elaborated on various opportunities that wireless devices can provide in rural healthcare. Dr. Sanjay Sarma, Director of Digital Learning at MIT led the discussion on use of online learning to bring new opportunities in education. Dr. Raj Sisodia, founder of the Conscious Capitalism movement and a professor at Babson College touched upon the impact of en-

trepreneurship on development. Dr. Ranu Dhillon, faculty at Harvard Medical School who had done extensive work in the field of health care in Africa and rural India described viable initiatives that could have great impact. Overall, the sessions were interactive covering the challenges and opportunities to uplift the lives of the neglected masses.

tain conditions or an accident, young adults with the stomach for calculated risk are likely to opt for being uninsured—and therefore potentially saving thousands of dollars.

reflects the opinion of ABC News.

“It gives me and my wife Radhi great joy to support this movement,” said Girish Navani, CEO of E-Clinical Services. “ The industrial revolution saw the steam engine transform transportation and the textile industry. The Internet has been a catalyst for quick access to information. If we give every child the ability to read and write and facilitate internet access to them you may start a new revolution” said Navani.

Napala Pratini writes for NerdWallet Health, the consumer finance website that empowers patients to find high quality, affordable health care and insurance.

The event concluded with appeal for generous support for ‘Ekal Vidyalaya’ in many different way so that those children from the rural areas can one day become one of us.

cal issues, foregoing insurance in 2014 will on average save young invincibles more than $1,000. Not only do the uninsured who visit the doctor spend less on these visits per year than their insured peers (an estimated $253 for the uninsured, as opposed to $517 for the insured), the penalty for being uninsured in 2014 is dwarfed by premium costs for the insured. While it is impossible to rule out the onset of cer-

This work is the opinion of the columnist and in no way

Dr. Nohria applauded the scaling ability of the Ekal model. He lamented that “I find it

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IIFA projects a strong presence in Houston Bollywood mega-star Vidya Balan joins IIFA on a multi-city promotional tour in the United States

Rajender Singh seen speaking at the IIFA press Conference in Houston.

L-R: Houston Judge, Hon. Ravi Sentil, singer Abhijeet Bhattacharya , Sabbas Joseph, Director – Wizcraft International and IIFA, Bollywood actress Vidya Balan and Dr. Kiran Patel , supporter of IIFA, by Shobana Muratee

Continued from Page 1


he IIFA promotion in Houston was a huge success in terms of the media turned out for the press conference. The Bayou City is home Bollywood fans and shows like IIFA would be welcomed here in the future. However, this year the IIFA Celebrations presented by Freedom Health will play out in a star-studded affair at Tampa Bay, as a huge celebrity contingent including Farhan Akhtar, Kareena Kapoor, Saif Ali Khan, Madhuri DixitNene, Shruti Hassan, Sonakshi Sinha, Anil Kapoor, Shahid Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra, Sri Devi & Boney Kapoor, Shabana Azmi and Javed Akhtar, Rakeysh Om Prakash Mehra, Dr. Kamal Hassan, Shekhar Kapoor, Pritam, Anupam Kher, Vidya Balan, Ritesh Deshmukh, Genelia D’souza, Boman Irani, Fardeen Khan and many others will fly down to Tampa Bay in April this year. Sabbas Joseph, Director – Wizcraft International and IIFA said, “This is a momentous occasion indeed for IIFA

and we are thrilled to be debuting in the United States. We have had an overwhelming response from the fans here and want them to experience the true magic of our cinema. IIFA has therefore decided to open up the Magic of the Movies to audiences. We trust that the partnership we have struck with Tampa Bay will lead to great benefits to both countries in terms of entertainment, trade and tourism.” Singer, Abhijeet Bhattacharya whose earlier show was successful hosted by Star Promotions Inc. in Houston was also on hand, saying, “It’s always an honor when our cinema and music are appreciated around the world. IIFA has been a part of that journey. As a singer, it’s always special to be awarded or even nominated for an IIFA. The awards have a great deal of prestige attached to it.” IIFA Magic of the Movies and Technical Awards will be a night of music, dance and awards, with performances from Kareena Kapoor Khan, Sonakshi Sinha, Farhan Akthar, Bipasha Basu and a special musical act by Pritam.

The show will be hosted by Bollywood’s nawab, Saif Ali Khan and actorcomedian Vir Das. Tickets for the same go on sale on, come Saturday, March 15th.

company Star Promotions Inc. 20 years ago, he had just a single goal to entertain. And although he tried his hand at twenty other businesses, it was his entertainment company that held strong. There is no doubt that he is cut out for show business and his passion was also evident to super stars like Anil Kapoor, and Anupan Kher who he says are also his good friends and are instrumental in him choosing this career path. Singh has brought over 95 local major shows and ten International shows in the past 20 years to cities across North America. Singh also sees himself as a promoter of Broadway style plays

in the future. Although gifted with great management and communication skills needed for such a business, Singh still believes that it is risky and not everybody cup of tea. As the audience one can only judge an event by its success or failure, regardless of how it goes, every single event, he says, demands the same amount of commitment. He claims to be a risk taker and is willing to go to any lengths, even take loses to bring a quality event and pure entertainment to the people who have trusted him all these years. Let’s hope that Star Promotion Inc. is once again successful, this time in bring IIFA to Houston.

Additional unique events include the FICCI-IIFA Global Business Forum, an IIFA Masterclass with Vidya Balan and Kevin Spacey, among others and IIFA Stomp, a celebration by the Tampa Bay community to welcome IIFA on April 23rd - a unique celebration of Indian music, dance and cuisine in the Curtis Hixon Waterfont Park in Tampa. This open for general public event, will feature popular DJs led by Ravi Drums and Akbar Sami. If any one company can successfully bring the thrill and glamor of IIFA to Houston it would be Star Promotions Inc. which has a track record of Houston’s most successful event promotions. Its founder and president Rajender Singh is confident that IFFA will be held in Houston soon as he has been toying with the idea and working closely with Wizcraft International directors for a long time. When Singh started his

Rajender Singh seen with Wizcraft International and IIFA directors at their first press conference earlier in New York.

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FRIDAY, March 21, 2014

Experiments with Truth: Gandhi and Images of Nonviolence On View October 2, 2014 – February 1, 2015

Josef Helfenstein, Menil Director and Curator, Experiments with Truth seen giving an overview of the project to the attendees on March 11, 2014 at The Menil Collection. eminent followers and leaders of significant movements of social and political reform in the last decades are included. The exhibition will also present major works illustrating the complex artistic visualizations of non-violence throughout world religions including iconography based on themes of asceticism, compassion, abolition of slavery, and racial equality. Finally, artworks by modern and contemporary artists that resonate with Gandhi’s vision and contemplate in a critical way the unfinished conflicts of past and present will appear throughout the exhibition.


xperiments with Truth: Gandhi and Images of Nonviolence is the first international project to explore the resonance of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi’s (1867-1948) ethics of nonviolence, or “satyagraha,” in the visual arts. This exhibition presents approximately 130 works spanning several centuries and includes paintings, drawings, photographs, prints, sculptures, rare books, and films by artists from Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe. The exhibition’s themes echo the expansive humanitarian concerns of the Menil Collection’s founders, John and Dominique de Menil. Following their example, we aim to create a platform for international conversation on worldwide issues surrounding human rights, compassion, civil disobedience, and progress through non-violence. A renowned photograph of Gandhi’s last possessions, a carefully constructed “stilllife” of the few objects he

owned at the time of his death (two dinner bowls, wooden fork and spoon, porcelain monkeys, diary, watch, prayer book, spittoon, letter openers, and two pairs of sandals), is the catalyst for the exhibition. The striking simplicity of this photograph, whose author remains unidentified, conveys the deep significance of these items, which serve as incarnations of Gandhi’s ascetic lifestyle and his conviction that the practice of satyagraha must begin “with the individual, at home,” as he once explained. Among the diverse artworks and artifacts on display will be iconic photographs by Henri Cartier-Bresson from the tumultuous time of India’s independence and partition in 1947, along with another group taken just before and immediately after Gandhi’s assassination in 1948. Portraits and documents of Gandhi’s most important predecessors and contemporaries (Ruskin, Thoreau, Tolstoy, Sojourner Truth), as well as his most

The opening events at the Menil Collection will coincide with the 145th anniversary of Gandhi’s birth, October 2, 2014, and the exhibition will remain on view until February 1, 2015, before traveling to the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum in Geneva. In Houston, the presentation will activate a citywide initiative at various sites within the Menil campus and many cultural organizations in the city. Curated by Menil Director, Josef Helfenstein, in consultation with Indian artist Amar Kanwar, Experiments with Truth will be accompanied by a publication intended to introduce the exhibition’s significant figures, ideas, historical events and trends to a non-specialist audience.

L-R: Dr. Roopa Gir, Jean Ellis, Karl, Josef Helfenstein and Dr. Ratna Kumar. Photo by Shobana M PUBLIC PROGRAM: Conversation and Book signing with Ramachandra Guha, Author of Gandhi Before India. Monday, April 21, 2014, 6:30 p.m. This magisterial and revelatory book, destined to become the biography of Gandhi, takes us from


his birth through his decades as a lawyer and community organizer in South Africa. Ramachandra Guha, using a wealth of previously untapped documents, constructs a brilliantly nuanced narrative to describe the social, political, and personal worlds in which Gandhi began his journey to becoming the modern era’s most influential political actor.

Guha has taught at Yale, Stanford, the University of Oslo, and the London School of Economics. His books include the awardwinning India After Gandhi. This exhibition is generously supported by H-E-B; Skadden, Arps; and the City of Houston. United Airlines is the Preferred Airline of the Menil Collection.

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Images: Unknown photographer, Gandhi’s Last Possessions, 1948; Henri Cartier Bresson, Mourners at Gandhi’s Funeral, 1948; Courtesy: The Menil Collection

The exhibition will include works by living artists such as Mel Chin, Marlene Dumas, Suzan Frecon, Theaster Gates, Robert Gober, Shilpa Gupta, Amar Kanwar, William Kentridge, Kimsooja, Ai Weiwei, and Zarina. Also on display will be examples by Eve Arnold, Margaret BourkeWhite, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Dan Flavin, Yves Klein, René Magritte, Agnes Martin, Barnett Newman, Robert Rauschenberg, Mark Rothko, Jean Tinguely, Shômei Tômatsu, and Andy Warhol.

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Friday, March 21, 2014

Section 2

FRIDAY, March 21, 2014


Hypertensive Disease in Pregnancy and Cardiovascular Disease Later in Life weeks without protein in the urine.

Sabina Cherian M.D. by Sabina Cherian M.D.


ypertensive disorders of pregnancy remain a major health issue for women and their infants in the United States. Optimal management requires close observation for signs and symptoms, lab findings and, after establishing the diagnosis, delivery at the optimum time for both maternal and fetal wellbeing.

Important points to note are that: • Health care providers and patients must be alert to the fact that preeclampsia is a multisystemic disease that affects all organ systems and that can rapidly progress. Gestational hypertension can evolve into preeclampsia as patients with chronic hypertension can quickly become toxemic in the third trimester (develop superimposed preeclampsia). • Intervention for severe preeclampsia is sometimes delayed because of the absence of proteinuria so this has been taken off the severe feature requirements. You can have severe preeclampsia without proteinuria! • Patients should be aware that preeclampsia can occur after delivery for upto 12

We categorize hypertension in pregnancy into four categories: 1)Preeclampsia-Eclampsia Preeclampsia is a BP of 140/90 mm Hgon 2 separate occasions with 300 mg of protein in the urine on a 24 hour urine collection (or equivalent lab findings) noted after 20 weeks gestation. Eclampsia is a seizure that can be caused by uncontrolled or undiagnosed preeclampsia. 2)Chronic Hypertension (of any cause) - High Blood Pressure prior to 20 weeks gestation. 3)Chronic Hypertension with Superimposed Preeclampsia. Preeclampsia that develops in a patient who already has chronic hypertension. 4)Gestational Hypertension - High Blood Pressure after 20

weeks postpartum. It is critical to tell patients with hypertension at hospital discharge that they should be aware of headache, visual changes and abdominal pain and immediately report them to their physician. It is also suggested to come back to the office in a week for BP check. • For women with a medical history of early–onset preeclampsia and preterm delivery at less than 34 weeks gestation or preeclampsia in more than one pregnancy, daily low dose aspirin late in the first trimester maybe suggested. Over the past 10 years, information has accumulated indicating that a woman who has had a preeclamptic pregnancy is at increased risk of later-life cardiovascular disease. This increase ranges from a doubling of risk in all hypertensive cases and an eightfold to ninefold increase in women with preeclampsia who gave birth before 34 weeks of gestation. It is the general belief

that preeclampsia itself does not cause the CV disease, but rather that preeclampsia and CV disease share common risk factors. Maintenance of a healthy BMI (body mass index), increased physical activity, not smoking, yearly assessment of BP, lipids, fasting blood glucose is suggested. • If you have a history of any type of hypertensive disease you should see your OBGYN for a preconception visit prior to getting pregnant again. Sabina K. Cherian, MD was born in Chicago, Illinois and grew up in Houston Texas. She did her residency in Brooklyn, NY and resided on the east coast for the last 9 years. She practices obstetrics and gynecological surgery at Center for Women’s Health’s four office locations in southwest Houston. She can be reached at 281342-6962 private consultation or appointment.

Heart Disease in Women

Dr. Kesavan Shan Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the leading cause of death in the United States for women. More women die of CAD than from cancer, lung disease and accidents combined. Furthermore, over 40% of post-menopausal women experience “silent heart attacks”—life-

threatening heart attacks with absolutely no symptoms. Unfortunately, these silent attacks can increase the likelihood of physicians missing a heart attack, resulting in delayed treatment for women. Understanding this, the American Heart Association has created a list of symptoms that may occur in women experiencing heart attacks:

both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach. 3. Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort. 4. Breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness. 5. As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort.

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Time Is Running Out To Enroll In Obama Care, Are You Enrolled? Almost a million people signed up last month for private health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, federal officials said Tuesday, bringing the total to date to 4.2 million but leaving the Obama administration well short of its original goal, with less than a month to go before the end of the open enrollment period. White House officials predict a surge in sign-ups just before the six-month enrollment period ends on March 31, but it will be a challenge to make up for the slow start that resulted from technical problems crippling the federal insurance marketplace in October and much of November. The administration said Tuesday that 943,000 people signed up for coverage last month, down from 1.1 million in January and 1.8 million in December. Officials noted that February was a short month, with fewer days for people to apply. Administration officials said they were pleased with the pace of enrollment, even though the total fell short of the target initially set by the Department of Health and Human Services. In an internal memorandum in September, federal health officials said they wanted to have 5.6 million people enrolled by the end of February, with a total of seven million signed up by the end of this month. The goal for February alone was 1.3 million. Of those who signed up in February, the administration said, 27 percent were between 18 and 34, up slightly from the 25 percent for the first four months of the enrollment period, through January. Insurers and the White House have avidly sought young adults, saying their premium payments were needed to offset the costs of coverage for Americans who were older and presumably needed more care. The age profile of people signing up is somewhat older than many insurers expected, with the number of those between 55 and 64 — 1.3 million — exceeding the number in the 18-to-34 age bracket, 1.1 million. The latest figures were released as the White House makes a final push to increase enrollment, with

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FRIDAY, March 21, 2014



Friday, March 21, 2014

he Federal Reserve has cut back its stimulus program by another $US10 billion ($11 billion) despite the recent US economic slowdown, which it has blamed ‘‘in part’’ on severe winter weather.

Section 2


US Fed signals interest rate rises to start next year

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China’s richest man bids to buy star Madrid skyscraper

The Federal Open Market Committee reduced stimulus spending to $US55 billion a month, saying the broader economy has ‘‘sufficient underlying strength’’ to support continued improvement in the labour market. But new Fed Chair Janet Yellen said that the central bank still did not foresee raising its base fed funds interest rate until next year, as long as unemployment remains too high and inflation is well-controlled.

People walk past the Edificio Espana building on the Plaza de Espana square in Madrid on March 19, 2014

‘‘We know we are not close to full employment,’’ she said. “We have expressed a number of opinions about the likely path of rates. In particular, the committee has endorsed the view that it anticipates it will be a considerable period after the asset purchase program ends before it will be appropriate to begin to raise rates.” “And of course, on our present path, that is not utterly presaid, we would be looking at next fall. In a review of recent conditions and its monetary policy, the FOMC said growth had slowed during the winter months, and that the housing sector recovery remains slow. Meanwhile it called indicators from the labour market ‘‘mixed’’ but said that they ‘‘on balance showed further improvement.’’ Despite the slower activity, the FOMC said that the cumulative progress in the economy and jobs market still justified another cutback to its bond purchase program, which it began tapering in December when it was $US85 billion a month. But in a significant shift to policy, the FOMC jettisoned

“We are not close to full employment”: US Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen speaks in Washington, DC. Photo: AFP. the two specific numbers for unemployment and inflation that it set in December 2012 as thresholds for weighing a rate increase, saying the numerical thresholds no longer served policy communication. The FOMC revised its forward guidance on rates to a more qualitative basis, Yellen said, ‘‘to better reflect conditions as they now stand, and are likely to evolve over coming quarters.’’ The change came after the official unemployment rate, 6.7 per cent last month, had neared the official threshold of 6.5 per cent even while the FOMC saw the economy as not yet ready for higher rates.The Federal Reserve meanwhile cut back slightly its economic growth forecast for this year and next, but said the unemployment rate would fall faster than it forecast in December. The Fed said the economy was expected to grow 2.8-3.0 per cent in 2014 and 3.0-3.2 per cent in 2015.Those figures

took 0.2 percentage points off the high end of the range for both years. But the Fed also forecast that the unemployment rate would drop to 6.1-6.3 per cent this year - compared with the pre-

vious 6.3-6.6 per cent range estimate - and to 5.6-5.9 per cent in 2015. It left its view of inflation largely unchanged, saying it could be as high as 1.6 per cent this year and 2.0 per cent next.

IRS: $760 million in 2010 refunds unclaimed WASHINGTON — If the Internal Revenue Service is looking for you, it could be a good thing. The tax agency said Wednesday it owes money to 918,600 taxpayers who did not file a 2010 tax return. Total amount up for grabs: more than $760 million. But you have to file your 2010 tax return by April 15 to claim it. After that, the money becomes the property of the U.S. Treasury. “The window is quickly closing for people who are owed refunds from 2010 who haven’t filed a tax return,” IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said. He said students and part-time workers often ne-

glect to file and could be due a refund. The average refund due from over-withholding is $571. That doesn’t include the Earned Income Tax Credit, which was worth as much as $5,666 in 2010. Married couples with three children filing jointly could make as much as $48,362 in 2010 and be eligible for the credit. Taxpayers who are owed a refund do not have to pay a penalty for filing late. But their 2010 tax refund could be held if they haven’t filed a tax refund for 2011 or 2012 or owe money for child support.


ADRID, March 19, 2014 (AFP) - China’s richest man Wang Jianlin has bid to buy a historic Madrid skyscraper, offering hope that a key part of the city centre could be rejuvenated, a source said Wednesday. Spanish media said property magnate Wang had offered 260 million euros ($362 million) to the owner, Spanish banking giant Santander, to buy the 25-storey Spain Building. “There is an offer by Wang Jianlin through his real estate group Dalia Wanda, but there are also other offers,” a source close to the matter told AFP, declining to confirm the amount. The president of the Madrid region, Ignacio Gonzalez, said a deal had been struck by Wanda and Santander, but business sources would not confirm this. The white and red brick tower of offices and apartments, completed in 1953 un-

der the dictatorship of Francisco Franco, dominates one end of the Plaza de Espana square in western Madrid. It has stood empty since 2006, a symbol of the 2008 real estate collapse that thrust Spain into a double recession. The purchase of the building “could give an enormous boost” to the neighbourhood, Gonzalez told reporters. Wang, formerly a senior member of China’s ruling Communist Party, was ranked the richest man in China and 26th richest in the world, with personal wealth estimated at $14 billion, business magazine Forbes said last month. In 2012 he bought US cinema chain AMC Entertainment. If the reported price tag for the Spain Building were confirmed, it would be a heavy mark-down on the 389 million euros Santander paid for it in 2007, just before Spain’s building boom went bust.

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Sustaining Hindu Traditions: Karadayan Nombu

FRIDAY, March 21, 2014

The name karadayan originated from the name of the offering

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Other than telling the legend of a miracle that made a dead man come alive, Satyavan –Savitri story and this social tradition, Karadayan vratam, is capable of instilling several virtues in the young mind. The pivotal role of the Hindu woman in preserving the integrity and welfare of the family is indicated by her solemn vow on this special day. As a bottom line, this day is also a reminder that we cannot negate the divine sanction in everyday life. During the process of inevitable transcultural amalgamation, one should not forget to absorb some of the ethical values of time tested traditions in our life. Several Houston area families celebrated this special day.



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ncient Hindu legends are often linked to celestial events. Many Hindu traditons, both religious and social, have been passed on to us for generations. As Hinduism is spreading worldwide, it is only natural that some of the less known traditions may extinct in the new world. Hindu temples, to an extend, preserve some of these traditions when there is much social excitement. Karadayan nombu is one such relatively less known family tradition restricted to southern Indian regions. It is also known as Karadayan Vratam or Savitri Vratham. It is observed in Tamil Nadu on the last day in Maasi masam in Tamil calendar (in March). Astrologically, this is a vratam ( resolution) observed at the time of the transition of Sun into Meena Rasi (Pisces) from Kumbha rasi (Aquarius). This year it occurred on Friday, March 14. A resolution that entails merits are generally called vratam ( vrat). We frequently hear about vratam like fasting as a special undertaking, keeping some goal in mind, and making a resolution about it. In the spiritual field, the person who observes vratam applies control over the pleasures of the sensory organs, as a solemn vow to observe regulatory discipline.. In Hindu families, Karadayan vratam is observed by married women. They pray for their family’s health so that they should never be separated each other eternally. On this day, married women worship Goddess Gauri ( Parvathi, Shakti) for marital bliss and better health of husband and children. Unmarried girls observe the vratam to have a happy family all their life. .Karadayan Nonbu is similar to that of Soubhagya Gauri Vratam or Gauri Tritiya vratam of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, Gangaur vrat of Rajasthan, Jyeshta Gauri Vrat of Maharashtra, Jitiya Puja of Bihar and Karva Chauth observed in northern region of India. This is also similar to Vat Savitri vrat observed in Bengal, Orissa and in some other regions. There is a story associated with each of the Hindu social traditions. Karadayan nombu is based on the legend of Satyvan – Savitri, a sub plot in the Mahabharata. King Ashtapati had a beautiful daughter named Savitri. The king had given her permission to choose her husband. One day, Savitri happened to see a young man named Satyavan in the forest. Impressed by Satyavan’s

strenuous life in the forest to take care of his blind parents, Savitri fell in love with him and decided to marry him. The king discovered that Satyavan is the son of a deposed king. Astrological signs indicated that Satyavan is destined to die within a year. Despite the king’s reluctance, Savitri was adamant to marry him and started their life together in the forest. They led a happy life and soon the days passed. Savitri realized that Satyavan would die any moment. So she observed strict austerities to pray Goddess Parvati to spare him. She cooked special offering to appease the Goddess for mangalya bhagyam ( the fortune of family’s safe and sound life) and kept vigil as the day was approaching. As expected, one day, Satyavan became unconcious. Soon, Savitri realized that Satyavan is dying. She felt the presence of Yama, the god of death. She saw him carrying the soul of Satyavan and she persistently requested Yama to spare Satyavan’s life. Astounded by Savitri’s persisitant discipline to seek her husband’s life, Yama spared Satyavan’s life. Savitri and Satyavan happily lived ever after. The name karadayan originated from the name of the offering (nivedya) Karadayan Adai offered to the Goddess. On this day married women fast the whole day and break the fast by eating the Kara adai with butter. In addition, they wear the Karadaiyan Nombu Saradu, an yellow thread around the neck. During this time the devotee chants the Tamil chant associated with Karadayan nombu: Urugada Vennaiyum oru adaium nan notren, Oru kaalavum kanavan yenaai piriyatha iruka vendum (I offer adai and butter to you. So that my husband and I never separate)

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FRIDAY, March 21, 2014

Your Horoscope for the Week of March 21, 2014 by Hardik Vyas, Astrologer Cell : 832-298-9950

As per Indian Vedic Astrology the Moon sign is considered, in which every Rashi has control over certain letters, which are initials of your name. Whereas in Western system of Sun Sign, all the people born in one month belong to the same sign. For example, every year approximately around 21 of March to 20th April, the Sun is moving in the Aries Constellation. So all the people born in that month belong to the Sign of Aries. If you were born in between those two dates then you are a Aries born.

Aries (A,L,E) 21 March to 20 April

Libra (R,T) 23 Sept to 22 Oct

Believe in yourself and your work. Do so and others will follow you. You’ll meet some new interesting people, present your ideas to them. You’ll be surprised at the positive response you receive. Joint financial ventures may turn sour, salvage what you can. Don’t spend too much on entertainment or gambling. You’ll have to curb some of your habits. You’ll need the extra cash if you overextended yourself. More money can be yours if you are willing to go after a higher-paying job that requires more responsibilities.

Use your own initiative, Waiting for others will be a waste of time. Extravagance and time will work against you. Positive action to alleviate concerns about aging can be dealt with through a fitness program. You’ll feel better about yourself if you make changes. Don’t make unrealistic promises. Join groups. You will meet people who will listen to your ideas and contribute as well. You’ll have no difficulty borrowing money or possessions. Sudden changes in your financial picture and position in life are apt to happen if you have executed your intentions carefully.

Scorpio (N,Y)23 Oct to 21 Nov

Taurus (B,V,U) 21 April to 20 May Deal with overindulgent individuals, Your colleagues may cause frustration if they appear to be working against you. Don’t allow them get away with a “poor me” attitude with you. Leadership can be yours if you put additional work into organizations you belong to. You may have to spread yourself a little thin, but it will be worth it in the long run. Stress will cause fatigue. You can achieve much if you are willing to direct your attention toward your hobbies or self-improvement projects. Don’t let those you live with back you into a corner.

You need to move after your goals. Don’t let anyone stand in the way of your success. Do your own research and don’t leave anything to chance. Follow through with your plans and don’t overlook any details. Check your options and re-evaluate your motives. You’re too generous with others. Revamp your finances, you’ll have to be creative in order to keep your current lifestyle. You’ll be the center of attention. You can gain popularity if you attend functions that are related to your chosen field.

Sagittarius (BH,F,DH,TH) 22 Nov to 21 Dec

Gemini (K,CHH,GH) 21 May to 20 June You want to be the life of the party and mastermind of all the jokes. Don’t fret, satisfTake time to organize your financial situation and look over your personal papers. Real estate deals will turn out to be lucrative. Develop one of your unique ideas, talk to those who might be able to contribute to your efforts. You need to present your work if you want to prosper. Confusion about money or a joint venture will leave you feeling upset. Attend a lecture, greater self-awareness will be the result of the knowledge you receive.

Take actions, now. Don’t hesitate to be a little aggressive. It may put a spark back into your personal life. Changes at work may set you off, causing upset on the home front if you aren’t careful. You mustn’t dwell on situations that don’t involve your loved ones. Don’t leave things to the last minute and then worry about the outcome. You’ll be upset if someone has borrowed something that belongs to you without asking first. Try not to lose your cool, but make your point known. You may find the tables turned at a later date.

Capricorn (KH,J) 22 Dec to 20 Jan

Cancer (D,H) 21 June to 22 July Your need to be an observer, not a disturber. Accept the inevitable and prepare yourself to make the necessary adjustments. Expect delays if you are not organized and ready to roll. Keep your thoughts to yourself. Don’t believe everything you hear. Stick to what you know and focus on getting ahead. Partners won’t be too eager to help you. Don’t take on more than you can handle. You’d be best to spend some quiet time catching up on the little things you never find time to do. Don’t feel obligated to take care of everyone else.

Keep an open mind and go with the flow. You can turn your ideas into cash if you are willing to work hard. People will be interested in supporting your efforts. Don’t misinterpret their interest in you. Don’t let your independent nature hold you back from asking for some needed help. Your intuition will lead you in the right direction, don’t be afraid to start something new. Lady Luck is in your corner. You can raise the value of your home if you do some renovations.

Aquarius (G,S,SH) 21 Jan to 19 Feb

Leo (M) 23 July to 22 August

The tension will mount and the information you receive will be informative. Limitations are likely if you’ve been difficult to get along with, lately. By week’s end, pleasurable activities should be on your dance card. Your relatives will be more helpful than you ever thought possible. Sit back and listen. The information you receive will be informative and eye-opening regarding your current situation. Talk to individuals who are already in that position. You can gain an inside look at the pitfalls of being your own boss.

Virgo (P) 23 August to 22 September Your ability to sit back, observe and proceed to follow your own best interests. Try not to become too involved in other people’s private doings. Don’t confide in your peers. Your reluctance to do what they want will lead to discord and a possible loss of friendship. Don’t be too quick to follow the crowd. You can make sound financial investments if you act fast. You can make financial gains if you are realistic about your assets. Real estate investments can be bought or sold. Transfer money to the investment offering the best returns.


It is important to Use your ability to clear up small but important details. You will feel much more comfortable in social settings if you know your work is up to date. Get your body moving. Join a club or buy a good work-out tape. It’s time to take control of your life and your appearance. Use your discipline to achieve the image you want. You’ll want to spend too much on entertainment. Safe investments will be your salvation. Spend quality time with someone you love. It’s time to let your true feelings be known. Romantic connections can be made if you mingle.

Pisces (D,CH,Z) 20 Feb to 20 March

Your emotional attitude and the confusion, may cause to others around you. Go after your goals. You can make money if you produce services or goods that make domestic chores easier. Get together with friends and you will find out something about someone from your past. You’ll be angry about financial matters that concern joint accounts or outrageous contributions. If your mate can’t control their spending habits, limit credit card privileges. Be honest with yourself and your family. Don’t take on too much or make promises to family members that you know you can’t keep. Try not to be too harsh with them.





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FRIDAY, March 21, 2014

Non - Linear News Editor (Part Time) KTRK-TV, and ABC owned station in Houston, TX has an opening for a part time Non-Linear News Editor. Candidates should have experience in editing on non-linear systems as well as knowledge of the Digital Newsroom and understanding of the digital workflow for broadcast news, in a deadline intensive environment. Serious candidates should also have a working knowledge of a server based digital media workflow. Candidates should be able to edit in deadline situations, be creative, precise and be able to work fast. You must be able to take direction, and be a “Team Player” who is not afraid of an intense news environment. Hours will vary depending on the needs of the department, so flexibility to work a varied schedule is required. Candidates must apply on-line at by uploading a resume file, cover letter and list of references. Interested applicants should also send video tape sample of your work to: Human Resources, KTRK-TV, 3310 Bissonnet, Houston, TX 77005. Please Reference Job ID: 171682BR on all materials submitted. No phone calls please, and no third parties. Equal Opportunity Employer M/F/V/D.

PRODUCER Would you like to work in one of the best news towns in the nation? And for one of the strongest broadcast companies? If you can spend all day crafting a quality newscast and then drop everything for breaking news, then we want to hear from you. KTRKTV, the ABC Owned Station located in Houston, TX is looking for a journalist who is a strong writer, understands how to use graphics and can produce a well-paced newscast under daily pressure. The ideal candidate is both a leader and a listener. Candidates must have at least three years of experience as a newscast line producer. ENPS /Aurora/Ignite experience a plus - as is good understanding of social media and how it can be used to reach viewers and create content. Candidates must be able and willing to learn both non-linear editing and writing for our digital platforms. Applicants must be willing to work overnights, weekends and holidays. Applicants must apply on-line at by uploading a resume file, cover letter and list of references. If you are truly ready for market #10, please send writing samples and a copy of your latest newscast including one that demonstrates your ability to handle breaking news to: Human Resources, KTRK-TV, 3310 Bissonnet, Houston, TX 77005. Please Reference Job ID: 171572BR on all materials submitted. No phone calls please, and no third parties. Equal Opportunity Employer M/F/V/D.


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Voice of Asia Mar 21 2014  

Voice of Asia Newspaper has been reaching South Asian and Asian American families in Houston and surrounding cities in Texas since 1987. To...

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