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Vol. 30 No. 21 Friday, May 26, 2017 • Published Weekly from Houston • 713-774-5140 24 Pages ( 2 sections) 50 cents E-mail:

Cornell Univ. student found dead in NY

Apple - Houston Community College partner in an historic initiative

Sugar Land City Council updates rules of ethical conduct


UGAR LAND, Texas – Sugar Land City Council recently adopted a new Code of Ethical Conduct for city officials that establishes an independent review board and ensures the integrity of the city’s purchasing process among other requirements. The document was approved after a citizen committee spent months researching best practices and obtaining public input. Sugar Land’s previous ethics code was approved in December 2005, and changes in state law prompted City Council to establish a seven-member task force to conduct a 10-year review.

Aalaap Narasipura (Photo: Cornell)

EW YORK: A 20-year-old Indian-origin Cornell University student was found dead here after going missing this week.


Aalaap Narasipura, a senior electrical engineering student at Cornell’s College of Engineering was reported missing since Wednesday. Cornell University Police, working with the New York State Police, the Ithaca Police Department and the Ithaca Fire Department, recovered his body yesterday from Fall Creek, a short distance upstream from Ithaca Falls. Cornell University Police confirmed Narasipura’s identity. Police said the circumstances of Narasipura’s death are still under investigation, but no foul play is suspected. No other information is available at this time. Police had searched gorges and adjacent natural areas in Ithaca. Earlier authorities had issued an advisory describing Narasipura as a dark-skinned male, 5-feet-9 inches tall. He was last seen in the early morning of May 17 on Cornell’s campus, and was wearing shorts and a flannel shirt with bright blue socks and leather sandals. Vice President for Student and Campus Life Ryan Lombardi expressed “profound sadness” at the death of Narasipura. He described Narasipura as an “ambitious student” who was scheduled to graduate early this December. (-PTI)

Council member Amanda Edwards, Apple’s Vice President of Environment and Social Initiatives Lisa Jackson, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, HCC Chancellor Cesar Maldonado, Council member Karla Cisneros , Eva Laredo, Chair, Houston Community College Board of Trustees, Council member Jack Christie, Bob Harvey, President and CEO of the Greater Houston Partnership (Photo credit: Jacob David) by Jacob David


OUSTON, TX - Houston Community College has teamed up with Apple, the Computer and Tech giant, in a first of firsts to develop a course that will benefit future app developers, and teach them to thrive in the iOS and app developers community. The event took place at the Houston Public Library’s Julia Ideson Building in Downtown Houston on May 24, 2017. Main speakers included HCC Chancellor Cesar Maldonado, Apple’s Vice President of Environment and Social Initiatives Lisa Jackson, Houston’s Mayor Sylvester Turner and Bob Harvey, President and CEO of the Greater Houston Partnership. Madeline Burillo-Hopkins, President,

HCC Southwest College has been instrumental in the development of this curriculum for app development and coding. Eva Laredo, Chair, Houston Community College Board of Trustees, started the event by welcoming the attendees. She thanked Apple for providing this historic opportunity for Houston’s students. In his opening remarks, HCC Chancellor Cesar Maldonado said that this fulfills one of the 4 pillars of the HCC strategic plan, innovation. Industries today are dependent on coding. This supports the growth of the entrepreneurial culture in the city of Houston. HCC plans to integrate this course into their full degree programs in the Fall of 2017. “Apple’s products and operations

define innovation. This collaboration creates another pathway for student success, the ultimate experience at Houston community college.” Coding helps students with critical thinking and problem solving skill sets, he added. This course will help provide certified developers to companies who depend on coding and software abilities to run their business. Lisa Jackson, Apple’s Vice President of Environment and Social Initiatives, said she was thrilled to be able to empower the next generation of app developers and coders coming from the Houston Community College system. “Diversity is a huge part of what makes Apple great, In 2008 there was no such Continued on Page 7

The Ethics Code includes specific guidelines and regulations governing conflicts of interest, business interactions with the City, City Council’s role in the procurement procedures, disclosure of gifts, private interests, misuse and disclosure of confidential information and restrictions on political activity and political contributions. A process for filing a complaint is detailed in the new code, and the duties and procedures of an independent review board of appointed citizens are included. “The code is designed to supplement the requirements in state law to ensure Sugar Land’s elected and appointed officials are held to the highest ethical standard.” said Chairman Conrith Davis. The new code provides for a maximum penalty of $2,000 for ethics violations. Other sanctions include measures such as censure, written reprimands, removal of appointed officials and recommendations for the recall of elected officials.

Seva Clinic opens in Pearland by Dr. Venugopal Menon


he Pearland area physicians are starting a charity, primary care medical clinic, the “SEVA CLINIC”. ‘Seva’ is selfless service in Sanskrit. The clinic is setup as a ‘Texas Not for Profit’ entity with 501C(3) tax-exempt status designation by the I.R.S., and will serve the people in need in the Pearland area. The founding chairman of the SEVA CLINIC, Dr. P. Vaduganathan (aka, Dr. Nathan) is the Medical Director who has been affiliated with Memorial Hermann Southeast Hospital for over 20 years. Assisting Medical Directors of SEVA CLINIC are Dr. Subhadra Bandhakavi, also affiliated with Memorial Hermann Southeast Hospital and Dr. Deepa Iyengar, of the University of Texas Physicians Family Medicine. Joanne Barrett, Chief Clinical Officer at Kindred Hospital, will be the Nursing Director for the clinic. Dr. Deepa Iyengar would bring in physicians from “Pragathi”,

& Sugar Land

Continued on Page 10

Mayor of Pearland Tom Reid, Dr. Vaduganathan, physicians and nurses at the opening of the new clinic.

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THE WHITE HOUSE Office of the Vice President, May 17, 2017 THE VICE PRESIDENT: Well, thank you so much. I’m very humbled by that warm introduction and very grateful for the presence of so many great Americans at this special gathering on behalf of the First Family and the President of the United States. Welcome to the White House. (Applause.) And would everyone join me in thanking the 18th Secretary of Transportation, Secretary Elaine Chao, for her distinguished career in public service? (Applause.) She is a role model for millions, and I just am so grateful to be able to welcome you here, welcome this outstanding group to the White House to join a celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. It is great to have you all here. Let me also say I was in the back room listening to another friend of mine who you heard from today and is another great member of this community, and now is the head of the Center of Medicaid and Medicare Services -- and a Hoosier -- (laughter) -- Seema Verma. Thank you so much for being here. And I bring greetings from the President of the United States, President Donald Trump. And I bring the President’s gratitude for all that Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders do every day to enrich the life of this nation. This room is living proof that people of Asian-Pacific descent -- from Indonesia to India, from the Solomon Islands to South Korea, from every nation in between -- you are an indispensable part of the American story, and your communities have contributed leaders like those two standing next to me in every facet of American life. In addition to Secretary Chao


n Tuesday, President Donald Trump’s 2018 proposed budget was unveiled. The president was out of town. Perhaps not a bad idea. This will be a very hard sell. To Congress. To the American people. It’s called “A New Foundation for American Greatness” and would slash federal spending by $4.5 trillion over 10 years. The cuts come with a huge price that would be paid disproportionately by the poor, disabled and elderly. The president does not touch the third rail of entitlement programs — Social Security and

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

Remarks by Vice President Mike Pence at a reception for Asian American And Pacific Islander Heritage Month and Seema Verma, we have a room filled today with leaders from the Asian American community and Pacific Islander communities across America. And give yourselves a round of applause for building a stronger and more prosperous America. (Applause.) My wife Karen and I just traveled the Asia Pacific on President Trump’s behalf last month, and throughout my trip I saw firsthand the immensely varied and vibrant cultures that call that region home. It made me all the more grateful that those cultures and their people and so many others from the continent of Asia and islands of the Pacific have come here and made such a profound impact on the United States of America. That’s really why we’re all here today. And since 1978, when President Jimmy Carter signed a joint resolution passed by the Congress, this has been a time here at the White House where we celebrate the contribution of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders throughout the country’s history. And President Donald Trump is proud to continue this tradition tonight. Earlier this month, the President issued a proclamation declaring, and I quote, that “Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have distinguished themselves” in every area of American life. And today we honor all those who have helped to shape the nation that we love and the country that we know today. For the better part of our nation’s history, the people of

Asia and the Pacific have come to America in search of a better life and a brighter future, and now our history books are literally filled with the names of trailblazers. And today, Americans of Asian and Pacific Island descent are the fastest-growing group in America. More than 20 million Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders now call the United States their home, and they make a difference in the life of our nation every single day. In our economies, in our churches, in our charities and our universities, in homes all across the country, communities large and small, and in government offices at every level, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are contributing every day to everything that makes America thrive and will make America great again. It’s particularly meaningful for me to be with you all today because while my people came from across the other ocean, the Atlantic Ocean -- my grandfather was an immigrant of this country. My great-grandmother, as the legend in our family remembers, walked my grandfather across the street and up a hill and looked west to the Ox Mountains in Ireland, and she said to my grandfather, who was a young man, that you need to go to America because there’s a future there for you. And my grandfather went as a young man, and didn’t see or speak to his mother for another 25 years. But it was extraordinary for me to literally grow up on the footstool of the American Dream. And that

Irishman’s brogue still rings in my ears as I expect the accents of the parents and grandparents and great-grandparents of those that are gathered here today still ring in your ears and in your hearts. It’s that story of America coming from the East and coming from the West, bringing the best -- our children and grandchildren here and then building a great life. That’s the story of my little family, and that’s the story of the families that are gathered here. And we’re celebrating it tonight. So let me simply say, President Trump is firmly committed to strengthening the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities in the years ahead, to seeing to it that your forbears, the confidence that they had in America, becomes your reality on an increasing basis. Because your success is America’s success, and this President wants you and every American, no matter the background, to accomplish more, to climb higher, to make tomorrow even better than today. The truth is that Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are an integral part of America’s past, but they’re even a bigger part of America’s future. So today I say with confidence our future is bright -- brighter than ever before. For Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, I know with your help, we will make America great again. Thank you for joining us to celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. And God bless you.

Budget cuts include U.S. heart Medicare — but does cut $800 billion from Medicaid over the next 10 years. Also lopped off is $192 billion for food assistance. Disability payments are cut by $72 billion. Another savings — $40 billion over 10 years — comes from not allowing undocumented immigrants to collect the child-care tax credit or earned-income tax credit even if their children are U.S. citizens. This latter point may prove popular with some of the president’s base, but it remains

a heartless cut. The proposed budget will increase military spending by 10 percent and includes $1.6 billion for the beginning of the U.S.-Mexican border wall. The president does make good on his promise to invest in infrastructure: $200 billion. And an initiative of his daughter Ivanka Trump — six weeks of paid family leave — will receive $19 billion. The house of cards is built on the assumption the economy will grow by 3 percent over the

next decade. But the Congressional Budget Office is projecting 1.9 percent growth, while the Fed projects 1.8 percent. The president’s budget director, Mick Mulvaney, said Monday, “The ugly truth is this: You can never balance the budget at 1.9 percent growth. It’s just not going to happen.” Saying the economy will grow 3 percent every year for the next 10 years doesn’t make that happen, either. Continued on page 3


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am the son of Indian immigrants who stressed God, family, education and traditional Hindu values. In recent decades, a plethora of “New Religious Movements” (NRM’s) has entered America. Yet, we also have a very robust Hindu temple system in America. Many of these NRM’s are in fact “destructive cults”, which operate fraudulent charities with 501c status. A “cloak of religion” is used to ply their trade on a global scale. These cults often have “gurus” acting as leaders or figureheads. There is corruption, fraud, and criminal activity involved. They operate as for profit businesses despite their charity/non-profit status. Often devotees run businesses associated with the nonprofits as registered agents. Money then is funneled back to the 501(c). Businesses are utilized for recruitment and fraud. Immigration fraud, tax fraud,

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slave labor and other criminal activity is associated with these organizations. They take in huge financial donations while not having independently audited financial statements. They also take in donations such as gold and property, including willed donations via estates of the deceased. How much “charity” is taking place? The donations are rarely if ever audited and traced from source to final destination. Traditionally, Hinduism is not a missionary religion. Yet, Hinduism has influenced all the other major religions of the world, through the sheer strength of the ideas contained in the world’s most ancient religion. What are we leaving behind for our children? What will be left for them to aspire to with their faith? The actions and methods of these organizations must be brought into the sunlight. Americans are pro- • 713-840-0828 •


Information that is contrary to their new belief system is often simply disregarded by cult followers. There are many being harmed spiritually, financially, physically and emotionally. Awareness and recognition of these problems is simply not enough. Corrective action and vocal opposition is a must. I remain very optimistic. The clear majority of people in our community are honest, hard working Americans, who are living the American dream. We are blessed to live and raise our families in this great country. America is a nation of laws. Religious freedom must not be utilized to inflict such abuse and foster crimes. God bless the United States of America. Sincerely, Madhu Sekharan, Attorney


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Destructive cults put their devotees through four stages: love bombing, confessional, indoctrination/brainwashing, and “exit costs”. Once immersed in such groups, followers find it very difficult to return to their “old lives”, especially since their old “self” has been obliterated, while cognitive disso-

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viding a great deal of money, labor, time, and support for such groups. Our efforts and resources could be much better spent for truly good works. Please reference the exhaustive work done by Drs. Robert Lifton and Margaret Singer. Also, Attorney Paul Morantz has prosecuted many destructive cults. The “Cult Education Institute” operated by Mr. Rick Ross and the international group, ICSA are excellent resources. Both Rick Ross and Paul Morantz are court certified experts.

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FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

Second Front Page


Tel: 713-774-5140

Save A Mother in India raises $70,000 Star comedian Rajiv Satyal entertains, singer Shreya Kaul steals show


OUSTON – Save A Mother (SAM) annual fundraiser was held on May 7, 2017 at the elegant Sugar Creek Country in Sugar Land just a week ahead of the Mother’s Day heightening the mood to celebrate mothers around the world. Save A Mother, a charity organization, has a far more serious stake on mothers. Driven by a mission to develop healthcare solutions for the poor in India, Save A Mother surpassed U.N.’s Millennium Development Goals when it decreased maternal mortality rates in the villages it serves (in India) by 90% at a cost of 25cents per capita per year. SAM Houston Chapter fundraiser in Sugar Land was a celebration of many milestones and it could have been better without the witty, joyous and comical celebrity Indo-American comedian Rajiv Satyal who was also the Chief Guest. He had a great set of jokes of immigrants, a topic that’s trending in the US and were well received.

Earlier, Event Chair, Hema Prasad welcomed the gathering and introduced the Chief Guest Rajiv Satyal and Dr. Shiban Ganju. The gala Co-Chair was Dr. Veena Mathur. Dr. Shiban Ganju founded Save A Mother in 2008 as an NGO and since it has worked with over 2 million people in over 1000 villages. In a power point presentation at the fundraiser Dr. Ganju gave an overview of its progress: in Uttar Pradesh, Save A Mother trained over 4,000 village health activists in over 800+ villages in Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka. Save a Mother is currently active in over 1,100 villages. In Karnataka, Save A Mother completed one year of this program successfully in April 2013 in 103 villages in Gadag district. Since then we have expanded to cover a total of 150 villages. We have also expanded this program to 50 new villages in Dharwad district. The Deshpande Foundation is our partner in these two districts. SAM is currently working to reduce maternal mortality in Ut-

continued from page 2 Trump wants a major revision of the federal tax code, which could stimulate the economy, but there are no details for such tax reform. All federal programs should be continually evaluated for effectiveness and affordability, and that must include Social Security and Medicare, regardless of the politics. Cutting federal funding for Medicaid transfers the burden to states — to states like New Jersey, where even Republican Gov. Chris Christie has seen the value in expanded Medicaid. If states with responsible leaders have to pick up the burden, taxes will rise locally. And in states where leaders are less compassionate, people will fall into the cracks.

Dr. Shiban Ganju addressing the audience (Photos credit: Arpit Duggal, Touch Of Color Studio)

by Shobana Muratee


Presidents’ budgets are suggestions, road maps, grand ideas. They show priorities, and that often is about it. Congress will battle this out, and it is unlikely many of Trump’s draconian proposed cuts will stay.

Save A Mother Houston Chapter Board of Directors with Dr. Shiban Ganju. tar Pradesh, Karnataka, and Telengana, India. Dr. Ganju reiterated the message, “It only takes 25 cents per capita per year to reduce infant mortality,” and that SAM had zero administrative cost and is run entirely by volunteers which meant that every dollar raised was spent on its programs. Veena Kaul president of the Houston Chapter spoke of SAM on the occasion. The fundraiser netted $70,000 from generous donors that evening. The event was elegantly emceed by Preity Bhagia who looked stunning in her simmering gown. Singer Shreya Kaul’s voice and vibrancy enhanced the mood instantly. Her choice of great Bollywood and English hits had the audience enthralled.

Rep. Mark Meadows, RN.C., chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, told The Washington Post that some cuts to programs for the elderly were too much even for him. “Meals on Wheels, even for some of us who are considered to be fiscal hawks, may be a bridge too far,” he said. So there will be haggling ahead.

Celebrity comedian Rajiv Satyal performing at the Save A Mother fundraiser l

But there is no question the proposed budget favors the wealthy over the poor. Mulvaney said, “This is, I think, the first time in a long time that an administration has written a budget through the eyes of the people who are actually paying the taxes.”

Singing sensation Shreya Kaul performing at the event.

The poor and the elderly don’t pay as much taxes as the 1 or 2 percent, but their needs are just as real. Federal budgets are a mixture of politics and policy competing for a finite amount of revenue. But Congress must not lose sight of the most important part of the American treasury: Americans. All Americans. A budget without a heart should be dead on arrival. (-North Jersey Editorial Board)

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by Sharlene Sharmila Richards, Immigration Lawyer Email at

The Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act protects you against unscrupulous sellers

Richard M. Alderman Interim Dean of the Law Center

Q. In January, a business agreed to install a new “Ford remanufactured engine” in my truck. On the receipt, it came with a 100,000 miles and three-year warranty. Before 1,000 miles, the truck started making a knocking noise. The business told me it was the transmission. On May 9, I brought the truck to a local Ford dealer. The dealership performed a complete diagnostics on the truck. The dealer’s service tech said the knocking was coming from the engine. He also informed me that engine was not a Ford remanufactured engine, it didn’t have a Ford engine serial number and didn’t display a Ford ID plate. Also, some of the engine had been painted. In his opinion, a used engine had been installed in my truck. Based on these facts, what legal action would you recommend? In my view, this appears to be a case of outright consumer fraud. Thank you! A. Texas has a very good consumer protection law called the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. This law protects you whenever a seller makes false, misleading or deceptive representations, breaches a warranty or acts in an unconscionable manner. Based on what you say, my opinion is that the seller of the engine violated this law in many ways. Specifically, it misrepresented that the engine was a “new Ford remanufactured engine,” breached its express warranty regarding the engine, and acted in an unconscionable manner by taking

“grossly unfair advantage of you.” If you were to sue under this law, it allows you to recover the money you have lost because of the seller’s conduct, up to three times your damages if you show the seller knew or should have know that it was not a new Ford manufactured engine, and any attorney’s fees you incurred. My suggestion is to first speak with the seller and it know you expect it will promptly install the correct engine at no cost to you, or refund what you paid. Let the seller know you know your legal rights and will pursue them if you cannot work things out. If the seller refuses to work with you, your options are to file a claim in small claims court, or speak with a local consumer attorney. Remember, if you were to sue and prevail, you would recover your attorney’s fees from the other side. Q. How is child support computed? Does the court look at things like overtime pay, and “extra” income? My soon to be ex says that only regular income is included. A. Child support is computed from all “net resources.” This basically includes any income received from any source. It includes overtime pay, and any other income from any source, including things like rent, interest, dividends and even gifts and prizes. The amount is reduced, however, by any taxes or social security that is paid. Once the court determines the amount of net resources, state guidelines recommend the amount

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

to be paid for child support. For one child, the amount is 20%, and 5% is added for each additional child. Q. A friend told me you publish a Consumer Alert newsletter. How do I subscribe? A. Your friend is correct. I publish a consumer newsletter that is delivered by email three times a week. It contains helpful information for consumers, everything from shopping tips to a discussion of legal issues. Best of all, the Consumer Alert is absolutely free. To subscribe, just visit my website, www. Q. My lease ended and I went month-to-month. My landlord says I still must give 60 days notice before I leave. Is this legal? I thought you only had to give thirty days notice when a lease was month-to-month? A. This has become a common question. As a general rule, when parties have a month-to-month tenancy, either party may end the relationship by giving thirty days notice. On the other hand, parties may always agree to extend or shorten this time period. My guess is that your lease has a clause saying that after the lease period ends you become a monthto-month tenant. It probably also says that even if you become a month-to-month tenant, you still have to give 60 days notice. I don’t like such clauses because tenants usually are not aware of them, but they probably are enforceable.

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Q: How many years do I have to be a permanent resident before I can apply for citizenship? A: In order to be eligible for naturalization, generally, the requirement is you have to be a permanent resident for five years. If you gained permanent residence through married to a US citizen and are still living with your US Citizen spouse, you will be eligible for citizenship after three years of becoming a permanent resident. Q: My brother wants to apply for naturalization. He came here to the United States as a Refugee two years ago and has been a permanent resident for about 4 years. Can he apply for naturalization now? A: Assuming he meets all the other requirements for naturalization, he should be able to apply for naturalization now. For those who came to the United States as refugees, they must apply for permanent residence within one year of their admission. They are however permitted to count the time from the date of their US entry as refugees as the beginning of their permanent residence. Based on your information, your brother does appear to have the minimum required five years to apply for naturalization. Q: My naturalization application was denied almost 5 years ago because the officer said I had lied on my I-751 application to remove conditions on residence as I had not disclosed in that application that I had a child out of wedlock while still married to my US Citizen spouse. I did not appeal the denial. It is almost 5 years now since that denial and I wish to apply again. What can I expect this time round? A: If you lied or provided false or misleading information in any past

immigration applications and failed to disclose that in your Naturalization application, you are deemed to not have the required good moral character for naturalization. If you decide to refile the naturalization application, be prepared to clarify why you had not disclosed the existence of that child in your I-751. You may also have to check the appropriate box in you N-400 about having provided false statements in the past and provide an explanation as to what happened. It is best you consult with an immigration attorney who will be able to advise you about your case in detail, what to expect and how to deal with the naturalization interview. Q: I have several old simple DWI convictions dating back almost 20 years. I wish to apply for naturalization. Is it going to be a problem? A: One of the requirements for naturalization is that the applicant must have good moral character for at least 5 years and continues to be a person of good moral character. You are advised to disclosed the DWI convictions and be prepared to explain the circumstances as to why you received those convictions and ensure that you have all the certified records if the officer asks for it. You may also need to explain and provide evidence that you are no longer a habitual drunkard and are now a person of good moral character. The officer has discretion to decide to include your conduct outside of the 5 year period in the evaluation of your case. You are also well advised to consult with an immigration attorney to assist you in the preparation of your case. Q: Please explain what the English Language exemptions are and what they mean? A: You will be exempt

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from the English Language requirement if at the time of filing your naturalization, you are either 50 years or older and have lived as a permanent resident in the United States for 20 years (50/20 exception) or are 55 years old or older and have lived as a permanent resident in the United States for 15 years (55/15 exception) or are 65 years of older and have been a permanent resident for at least 20 years. If you are exempt from the English language requirements, you will still be required to take the civics (US History) portion of the test but you are permitted to take the test in your native language. Those who are claiming the exemption as 65 years or older and have been a permanent resident for 20 years or more will receive an easier version of the civics test. If you are claiming the exemption, you are advised to bring an interpreter with you to your interview.

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12 FBISD students selected for Project Search Sugar Land promotes May, Steubing school-to-work internship for 2017-18 school year to Assistant City Managers


UGAR LAND - Executive Director of Business and Governmental Affairs Jennifer May and City Engineer Chris Steubing, P.E., C.F.M, were recently promoted to assistant city managers. The promotions were part of a city reorganization to address the loss of Assistant City Manager Mike Goodrum, who accepted the position of city manager in Coral Springs, Fla. May’s management responsibilities now include Parks and Recreation, Planning, Intergovernmental Relations, Economic Development (including tourism and cultural arts), Human Resources, Finance and Communications, while Steubing will oversee Engineering, Information Technology, Environmental and Neighborhood Services, Permits and Inspections and Public Works.

FBISD’s 2017-18 Project Search interns were presented with their job training certificates.


ORT BEND ISD (May 19, 2017) – UnitedHealthcare recently announced the names of 12 Fort Bend ISD high school students who were selected to participate in Project Search, a job training program created for students living with disabilities. Fort Bend ISD’s Special Education Department partners with UnitedHealthcare, Texana and Texas Workforce Solutions to provide the school-to-work program to help young people make a successful transition from school to productive adult life. FBISD’s 2017-18 Project Search interns include: Joshua Berry, Bush; Ritika Bhardwaj, Kempner; Nicholas Contarell, Bush; Daniel Hall, Bush; Gary Metz, Dulles; Cody Nguyen,

Ridge Point; Ileana Ramirez, Hightower; Nicholas Sparks, Austin; Sara Sugar, Dulles; Divine Tezzo, Austin; Emma Watson, Dulles; and Jacoby Young, Marshall.


During the 2017-18 school year, the FBISD interns will gain real-life work experiences as they receive onsite job training at UnitedHealthcare and learn independent living skills.

“When my son Daniel learned about Project Search, I noticed an immediate difference in how he presented himself,” she said. “From the second he took part in the orientation, his confidence blew through the roof. He spoke much clearer, made direct eye contact when speaking to people and started dressing appropriately – and this all happened before he knew of his acceptance into the program. The change I’ve witnessed in him and his excitement for the Project Search lets me know that he will have a great experience next year.”

“We are very excited that our son was selected for Project Search,” said Emile and Lilliane Tezzo, parents of Divine Tezzo. “His high school teachers have been talking to us about the project for a couple of years and we’ve always hoped that Divine would be selected. Now that he’s entered the program, he will discover a path leading to his indepen-

Parent Lillian Holmes is equally proud of her son on being selected as a Project Search intern.

Assistant City Manager Chris Steubing

First Assistant City Manager Steve Griffith will continue to manage fire, police, municipal court, public safety dispatch and aviation, and Assistant City Manager Jim Callaway is tasked with the extensive citywide planning process to prepare for annexation of Greatwood and New Territory on Dec. 12. May has been with Sugar Land for 11 years. As executive director of business and governmental affairs, she was responsible for the oversight of economic development (including tourism and cultural arts), planning, communications and intergovernmental relations. She previously served as director of economic development, providing leadership for the completion of agreements to secure the expansion of Sugar Land companies such as Nalco Champion, Applied Optoelectronics and Schlumberger, as well as the recruitment of companies such as First Data and the implementation of the lease and development agreements for the Smart Financial Centre at Sugar Land.

Assistant City Manager Jennifer May May’s Sugar Land career began in 2006 as a management assistant, a role in which she managed strategic planning and intergovernmental relations programs and served as the City’s liaison for a public-private partnership to transform a Central State Farm Prison building into the Houston Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land. (-City of Sugar Land)



The 15th Annual Missouri City Juneteenth celebration to feature a Diversity of familyfriendly events for all to enjoy

Derricks Woods, Dr. Portia Hopkins, and District B Councilmember Don Smith at the 2016 MCJCF Community Service Awards Gala (Images courtesy of Missouri City)


he Missouri City Juneteenth Celebration Foundation’s (MCJCF) annual weeklong celebration from June 12 – 18 will once again recognize community leaders who go above and beyond to give back to the “Show Me City” and all Fort Bend communities. During the fall of 2002, District B Councilmember Don Smith organized residents, business owners, and stakeholders within Missouri City to launch the annual Juneteenth tradition. As a result of their collaboration, a familydriven, four-day celebration of purpose and substance was launched. Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration commemorating the ending of slavery in the United States. Dating

back to 1865, it was on June 19 that the Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and that the enslaved were now free. Learn more about the history of the Juneteenth celebration on the MCJCF website: http:// Below is a list of events, both traditional and new, taking place during the 2017 Juneteenth celebration: MONDAY – JUNE 12 Missouri City Juneteenth Celebration Foundation Scholarship Golf Tournament The annual MCJCF Scholarship Golf Tournament is scheduled for Monday, June 12 at the Quail Valley Golf Course, 2880 La Quinta Dr.

The tournament will begin at 8 a.m. This is a time for all golfers to enjoy a round of golf, win prizes and awards. All funds raised help provide scholarships for deserving Fort Bend County students. The admission is $100 for individuals and $400 for a team of four. THURSDAY – JUNE 15 Annual Community Service Awards Gala The Annual Community Service Awards Gala will be held at the City Centre at Quail Valley, 2880 La Quinta Dr. from 7 – 9:30 p.m.

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

FBISD Board members Kristin Tassin, Jason Burdine and KP George sworn in to serve another 3-year term Board also elects new officers, Tassin to continue serving as Board President ORT BEND ISD (May 19, 2017) – The Fort Bend ISD Board of Trustees canvassed and certified the unofficial results of the May 6, 2017 election during a Special Board meeting on Monday, May 15.

Kristin Tassin was elected to Position 4 and has lived in Missouri City for 17 years. She is currently employed as an attorney at Dry & Tassin and is Co-Founder/Director of the charitable organization, Father’s Joy. Kristin is a mem-

KP George

Jason Burdine


On May 6, voters re-elected Kristin Tassin, Jason Burdine and KP George, and they will serve additional three-year terms on the Board. The three trustees were first elected to the Board in 2014. During the May 15 meeting, the FBISD Board of Trustees also elected its officers, selecting Tassin as Board President for the second consecutive year. Burdine was elected Vice President, also for the second consecutive year, and Addie Heyliger was re-elected Secretary.

May 15. Burdine’s family has called Fort Bend their home for the past nine years. He is a Financial Adviser and was recently appointed to the Texas School Safety Board by Governor Greg Abbott. Jason and his wife have two young children who attend FBISD schools. KP George was elected to

Kristin Tassin

ber of the Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce, Houston Young Lawyers Association and the Exchange Club of Sugar Land. She and her husband have three children, all of whom are enrolled in Fort Bend ISD schools. Earlier in the evening, the District presented Tassin with a commemorative gavel to mark her prior year of service as Board President. Jason Burdine was elected to Position 1 and was re-elected as Board Vice-President on

Position 5. George grew up in a tiny village in South India and arrived in the U.S. in 1993 to work for a financial firm, having earned multiple financial certifications and licenses since. He is self-employed as a Board Certified Financial Planner and owns and manages an independent financial planning practice with six other advisers. Since 1999, KP and his wife, an FBISD educator, have raised their three children in Sugar Land. One of his children is a recent college graduate, and two are currently attending Fort Bend ISD schools.

Fort Bend ISD announces top students

This event will recognize outstanding individuals within the Missouri City/Fort Bend County area. This year’s Keynote Speaker is Texas Southern University President Dr. Austin Lane. Tickets are $100 for individual seats and $1,000 for a table.

From Austin High School are (left) Valedictorian Priya Ketan Patel and Salutatorian Howard Cheng Yong with Bush High School Valedictorian Mehar Khan (far right) (Photo: Fort Bend ISD) ort Bend Independent School District announced on May 12 the names of the students who have earned the distinct honor of being named the 2017 valedictorians and salutatorians of the 11 high schools.

Dulles High - Valedictorian: Serdjan Rolovic, College: University of Texas-Austin, Field of Study: Computer Science; Salutatorian: Shreyas Balaji, College: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Field of Study: Physics

An incomplete list appeared in last week’s paper. This is the complete list of Fort Bend high school graduate Valedictorians and Salutatorian detailed below:

Elkins High - Valedictorian: Jason Bailey, College: Southern Methodist University, Field of Study: Mathematics; ; Salutatorian: Gabrielle Le, College: University of California at Los Angeles, Field of Study: Physics/Pre-Med


Austin High - Valedictorian: Priya Ketan Patel. College: University of Texas-Austin, Field of Study: Computer Science/Business; Salutatorian: Howard Cheng Yong, College: University of Texas-Austin, Field of Study: Chemical Engineering/Mathematics

Hightower High - Valedictorian: Omeed Faegh, College: University of Virginia, Field of Study: Political Science/Pre-Law; Salutatorian: Srivats Srinivasan, College: University of Tulsa, Field of Study: Medicine

Bush High -Valedictorian: Mehar Khan, College: University of Texas-Austin, Field of Study: Biology; Salutatorian: Maxwell Adu-Gyamfi, College: University of Texas-Austin, Field of Study: Undecided

Kempner High - Valedictorian: Mai Han (Tiffany) Ton, College: Rice University, Field of Study: Chemistry/Ethnic Studies; Salutatorian: Debbie Tran, College: University of Houston, Field of Study: Health

Clements High - Valedictorian: Kevin Rao, College: Harvard University, Field of Study: Math/Medicine; Salutatorian: Jina Zhou, College: University of Texas-Austin, Field of Study: Chemical Engineering

Marshall High - Valedictorian: Alayssia Guidry, College: Texas A&M University, Field of Study: Biomedical Science; Salutatorian: Shardé

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Apple - Houston Community College Partner.......

Graduation Day for YLDP Batch of 2017 by Arushi Guddanti


he soft rustling of voices bounce off the walls as students and parents gather to celebrate the graduation of the YLDP class of 2017. Teams and teams of students sit in table with smiles upon their faces. The season of YLDP has ended. Yet every ending is the start of a new beginning. As we look back on the various YLDP talks, from the CEO of Lyndoll Basell Bhavesh Patel, to the Dean of Bauer College of Business, Dr. Latha Ramchand to the former Mayor Annise Parker. Each speaker leaving drops of insight and inspiration at each word. Looking back, YLDP was a stepping stone to networking, a step towards the direction of public speaking, a step in the direction of leadership. It’s been a blast. Consul General, Dr. Anupam Ray addressing the students at their graduation ceremony.

One long fun crazy adventure. Thanks YLDP.

Caleb Hicks, Apple, explains the coding steps in developing an app to Madeline Burillo-Hopkins, President, HCC Southwest College. (Photo by Jacob David) Continued from page 1 thing as an app, it just didn’t exist ten years ago.” Apple hires a lot of bright students who are creative, ingenuous and intelligent. Swift Playgrounds, a new curriculum started by Apple engages students in coding basics as early as Kindergarten. Apple has created 2 million jobs in the United States. 1.5 million are app related jobs. This historic tie up with HCC is an economic investment into the long term development of the Houston jobs economy, she said.

YLDP Batch of 2017 with Dr. Anupan Ray and his wife Dr. Amit Goldberg Ray during the graduation.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner welcomed Apple’s Lisa Jackson to Houston. He thanked all of the staff affiliated with Apple and Houston Community College System for bringing investment and innovation to the city of Houston. This enhances learning opportunities in the most diverse city in the United States America. The world calls Houston a knowledge capital, because of the incredible mix of ideas and innovation. Houston ranks in the top 15 cities among I.T jobs. The mayor affirmed that there is an incredible need for coders and

YLDP board with CG and his wife Dr. Amit Goldberg.

You don’t have to spend a boring Memorial weekend at home. Come and laugh with

Bob Harvey, President and CEO of the Greater Houston Partnership, thanked Apple for creating opportunities and initiatives for Houstonians in the workforce development effort. “Success does not require a four year degree, but it requires skills, credentials, in areas where the market needs capabilities, such as in the fields of digital systems and technology.” Innovation is increasingly on digital platforms and this will open opportunities to develop not only consumer related apps but also industrial apps. This collaboration between Apple and Houston Community College Systems is set to create fast pathways to digital jobs that pay well in the city of Houston.

Sammy Obeid in Houston on Memorial Day Weekend!



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software developers. This new curriculum would give students the ability to learn and get high paying jobs in relevant fields of technology and the digital world. Houston will be one of the most aggressive cities in the deployment of innovative technologies, he added. “We look forward to creating the city of tomorrow by starting today” he said.


ammy K. Obeid, 29, is an American writer and stand-up comedian. He has long been a driven, goal-oriented perfectionist. He earned a 3.9 grade point average at the University of California, Berkeley, majoring in applied mathematics and business administration, before trying comedy, which he approached with the same rigor. He has 8.5K likes on facebook and has released one comedy album, Get Funny or Die Tryin. Obeid has been featured on America’s Got Talent, Conan and Last Comic Stand- Comedian Sammy Obeid (Photo ing. He is perhaps best known credit: KP Comedy) for performing 1,000 nights of comedy in a row, a current an analytic style full of wordplay, clever misdirection and world record. ethnic humor riffing on his Excerpt from NY Times ar- Middle Eastern roots (he’s ticle, dated Sept 20, 2013: Lebanese-American). In one “If Sammy Obeid has learned of his characteristic jokes, one thing from performing he says: “I believe God is stand-up for 1,000 consecutive a woman. So I don’t say days, it’s to embrace his inner ‘Amen.’ I say, ‘That’s what robot. His stand-up displays she said.”

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Academic Excellence and Spiritual Growth AV Montessori School is an elementary school managed by Arya Samaj Houston. Its annual day was celebrated last weekend with great fervor for legitimate reasons. There was a departure from the only-Sunday event by prefacing it with a Friday evening event in honor of the first graduating batch of 5th graders. Another reason was the new feather in its cap – accreditation with TAAPS (Texas Alliance for Accreditation of Private Schools), a prestigious benchmark.


Friday evening was an informal gathering where the teachers shared their sweet memories over a dinner with slices of pizza. Tears and teases related to the four 5th grade graduating students. The teachers had cared for them for almost seven years when they came as tiny tots and were leaving as confident boys and girls. Overwhelmed with emotions, it was obvious that something more than education was imparted to the children – the motherly love and care by mothers away from homes. Sunday morning began with the Havan by the graduating children and their parents as Yajmaans. Their recitation of the mantras was perfect as they had learnt them under the guidance

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

IACF Awards $35,000 in Scholarships to Senior High School Students


DAV’s first batch of 5th grade graduates With Elementary teachers Ms Aparna (English) Ms Abhilasha (Science) Ms. Selvi (Math) Ms Sandhay (S). (Photos credit -Sarvesh Bhavaraju) of the Acharyaji. The auspicious start came from recitation of the Veda-Mantras by a large ensemble of the tiniest lot of the school, age 2 to 4. For some moments, everybody in the audience got lost as if transported to the years of yore when children in gurukulas recited the mantras. This was followed by a kaleidoscope of music, dance,

and drama. Talent was in great supply and tightly packed in two hours. The guest of honor was Rupa, a perfect role model for children to emulate. The founder of Indicor blended east and west, an ideal mix of academic accomplishments and athletic pursuit in ocean surfing, and to top it all with renouncement by spending a year in In-

dia. The final product speaks about a school and so was the climax when the graduating children came one after another to deliver their passing out message from the podium, it was nothing less than a university graduate’s performance.

OUSTON – The Indo American Charity Foundation (IACF) will hold its Annual Scholarship Day on May 30th from 6:00PM to 8:00 PMat the FBISD Administration Building, 3119 Sweetwater Blvd, Sugar Land. Scholarships amounting to $35,000 will be dispersed among the twenty nine outstanding senior high school students from Fort Bend ISD, Alief ISD and Stafford Municipal School District. The scholarships awarded are based on grade point average; SAT/ ACT scores, personal essay, recommendation letters, and need to students that had applied. Among the Scholarships is the prestigious David Raj Scholarship that IACF presents each year to a student pursuing a career in medicine. Each year, a large gathering of parents, teachers, administrators, and dignitaries is witnessed at the ceremony that is

filled with cheer and jubilation. Join us to witness the demonstration of our mission “We live here We give here” in its fullest. The Indo-American Charity Foundation’s (IACF) scholarship committee was led by Venkat Iyer and Dr. Ramesh Cherivirala and a team of IACF Directors, who coordinated in the selection, and planning of this event. The Indo-American Charity Foundation has been serving the greater Houston area since 1988 through philanthropic endeavors focused on health, education, and human services. Through scholarships, the IACF supports the hardworking, vastly talented students aspiring to become health care professionals, entrepreneurs, and engineers. The IACF hopes to make a difference in the future of these bright students. For more on IACF visit www.

No lofty effort will ever be fully appreciated without the practicalities. The school has

Graduating 5th grade students and their families performing Havan.

Acharya Surya Nanda ji and students of KG & first grade reciting Veda Mantras.

acquired a new bus to ease the burden of the busy parents in transporting their children in a safe manner. Economic considerations are important too and it was revealed that DAV Montessori School is able to deliver at almost one-third of the cost at other comparable schools because its buildings and other assets came by way of donations, requiring no rents. The performance of the school during the year 2016-17 was presented with photographs – one

picture worth thousand words! The panoramic presentation was prepared by two parents previous night even to include the Friday evening photos, attesting to the fact that the DAV Montessori School is seen by the parents as a joint effort for the academic excellence and spiritual growth of their children. Sunday spectacle ended with a sumptuous meal. For more information visit www. and call 281759-DAVM(3286).


FRIDAY, May 26, 2017





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Seva Clinic opens in Pearland

Mayor Reid and Dr. Vaduganathan with Seva Clinic physicians Continued from Page 1 another nonprofit entity to help in the clinic. Additionally, several physicians have signed up to volunteer their time in this clinic. Dr. Rekha Neela, Dr. Suma Manjunath, Dr. Dhathri Kodali, Dr. Vijaya Kaila, Dr. Keyuri Popat, Dr. Sibtain Ali, Dr. Hema Salvady, Dr. Radha Rao, Dr. Ramesh Patel, Dr. Arun Mukhopadyay, Dr. Venugopal Menon, Dr. Kris Chandra, Dr. Siva Bodogala and many others have offered to donate such service. Serving as Directors on the Board would be Pearland Mayor Tom Reid, James Dickson, Hita Dickson, Jerry Farmer, S.G. Appan and Srikanth Venugopalan. The inauguration ceremony was held on Saturday May 20, 2017 at the Pearland Neighborhood Center. About 125 people enthusiastically attended in the event. Besides several physicians and nurses, the board members of the Pearland Neighborhood Center (PNC) and city officials were the proud participants. Ms. Carol Artz-Bucek, CEO of Pearland Chamber of Commerce, Buck Stevens of Pearland Arts League, Mr. Brad Christen,

President of PNC, along with Board members Anna Bryant, Naomi Stevens, Linda Darnel and Becky Cornelius, as well as Mr. Roy Castillo, Pearland Police Sergeant were in attendance. Leading officials of Memorial Hermann Southeast and Pearland Hospitals, Mr. Kyle Price and Mr. Mario Garner, Chief Operating officers, Mrs. Kelly Ochoa, Chief Nursing Officer and Ms. Rebecca Lilley, Physician liaison, were present. Honorable Mayor Tom Reid made the declaration that May 20, 2017 be proclaimed “the Seva Clinic Day� and The Pearland Chamber of Commerce

officials organized the beautiful ribbon cutting ceremony. Dr. Vaduganathan expressed that the physicians are humbled by the overwhelming support from the community and explained how the clinic will be functioning. Beginning June 1, 2017 The SEVA CLINIC will be open every Thursday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. It is located in the building of the Pearland Neighborhood Center, 2335 N. Texas Avenue, Pearland, TX 77581. The medical services will be free for patients but a donation of $10 per visit would be welcome and be used to cover some of the overhead expenses.

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FRIDAY, May 26, 2017



FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

US, Japan pushing back against Thai nurse made to resign over China in the South China Sea ‘sexy’ uniform scandal Nurse is forced to resign after ‘bringing shame to her profession’ for making her uniform look ‘provocative and sexy’ in Thailand

by Kris Osborn


S and Japanese ships have completed a joint show of force in the contested region of the South China Sea in an overt attempt to illustrate allied cooperation and interoperability - and challenge China’s aggressive stance in the region, service officials said. Earlier this month, ships from the U.S Navy and Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF) completed a “passing” exercise, or PASSEX, in the area; this included personnel exchanges, cross-deck flight operations, communications exercises, division tactics, a tracking exercise and photo exercise, according to a statement from the Navy’s Destroyer Squadron 7 Public Affairs. Participating for the U.S. Navy was the littoral combat ship USS Coronado. Ships participating from Japan included the Izumo-class helicopter destroyer JS Izumo (DDH-183), with embarked Escort Flotilla One Command Element, and the Takanami-class destroyer JS Sazanami (DD-113). Personnel exchanges were conducted through cross-deck helicopter operations utilizing Coronado’s embarked MH-60S and the SH60K Seahawk onboard Izumo. The three ships conducted precision maneuvering events and communication exercises while underway, both focused on ensuring the two navies are prepared to work together efficiently in future operations, the Navy statement specified. “My ship, JS Izumo, the largest ship in the JMSDF, has high capability in support of HA/ DR (humanitarian assistance/ disaster relief) activities in this region,” Capt. Yoshihiro Kai, commanding officer, JS Izumo, said according to a US Navy report. “This bilateral exercise improved our teamwork, tactical skill and readiness.” Although it has now been many months since the US Navy conducted a “freedom

ANGKOK, Thailand - A nurse was forced to resign after ‘bringing shame to her profession by wearing an ‘overly sexy uniform’ at work.


Photo: AsiaWire

Parichat ‘Pang’ Chatsri, 26, was made to quit after a photo of her at a private hospital in Isan, Thailand, went viral on social media. US & Japan show force together in South China Sea to Counter China (File photo) of navigation” exercise designed to specifically counter China’s territorial assertions in the South China Sea, stepped up US-Japanese presence and collaboration in the area unambiguously sends a “deterrence” or “counter-balance” message to China. The PASSEX, therefore, while seemingly routine upon initial observation, is without question taking place in a broader context of continued tension in the South China Sea arising from China’s territorial ambitions. China’s claims, particularly in the Spratly Island vicinity, are of course known to be vigorously challenged by the US and its many allies in the Pacific. In recent years, the Pentagon has sharply criticized Chinese moves to place weapons on dispute island areas of the South China Sea, a move which further complicated U.S.-China tensions in the highly-disputed region. “Commercial imagery indicates that China has deployed a surface-to-air missile system on a disputed outpost in the South China Sea. We are concerned that these actions are increasing tensions in the region and are counterproductive,” a Pentagon spokesman told Scout Warrior at the time when news of these weapons emerged. DoD officials have further ex-

plained that continued Chinese actions and territorial claims in the region are not in keeping with international laws, rules and regulations. Further militarizing the region is a source of substantial concern for Pentagon officials. Surface-to-air missiles, in particular, are of grave concern given their ability to reach aircraft in the vicinity. Also, while there were reports that China was placing artillery weapons on island-like claimed structures a while back, the presence of surface-to-air missiles brings an even more significant threat. “We continue to encourage all claimants to clarify their territorial and maritime claims in accordance with international law and to commit to peacefully manage or resolve their disputes, including through the use of peaceful dispute settlement mechanisms, such as arbitration,” the Pentagon official added. The area is question is a group of highly disputed islands south of China in the South China Sea called the Spratly Islands. The small islands in the area, some of which are claimed by China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Taiwan, are rich in resources and of strategic geographical importance in the Pacific region. (-NationalInterest. org)

She was pictured in a tightfitting lilac uniform with a short skirt that looked purpose-built to show off her slim figure. The uniform was far from outrageous by western standards, but it was regarded as provocative in Thailand. Critics accused Ms Chatsri of dressing inappropriately and disrespecting the nursing profession. The photograph went viral after it was shared on the social media page of a group called the Thai Nurse Lovers Association. Ms Chatsri has now issued a public apology. (-Daily Mirror)

US woman held for conspiring to smuggle technology to China OS ANGELES | AFP | Tuesday 5/23/2017 - A California woman was arrested Tuesday on charges of conspiring to smuggle sensitive space communications technology to her native China, federal authorities said.


Si Chen, 32, also known as Cathy Chen, between March 2013 and December 2015 allegedly purchased and smuggled more than $100,000 worth of sensitive communications devices without obtaining proper export licenses required by federal law. The items included components commonly used in military communications

“jammers” from which Chen removed the export-control warning stickers prior to shipping, according to the charge sheet. “Federal export laws are designed to protect American interests by preventing the proliferation of technology that may fall into the wrong hands,” Acting US Attorney Sandra Brown said in a statement.

passport to evade detection and ran her operation with unnamed co-conspirators in China. The indictment alleges that after she purchased the restricted goods and technology, she would ship them to Hong Kong under a false name while falsifying the description of the products and their value.

vigorously pursue traffic items that our national seculand in the wrong

The products included microwave components that had applications in space technology and a so-called Traveling Wave Tube Amplifier used in space communications.

Authorities said Chen used several aliases and a forged

If convicted of the 14 charges in the indictment, Chen faces up to 150 years in prison.

“We will those who could harm rity if they hands.”



FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

VOICE OF ASIA 13 Section 2



FRIDAY, May 26, 2017


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Suman Kanuganti’s Aira Tech Corp. and AT&T help the blind and visually impaired ally able to do, is made exponentially difficult for the blind and visually impaired who make up more than 22 million of the U.S. population.

Suman Kanuganti

magine having just arrived at a busy airport and having to navigate to baggage claim, all the while having your eyes closed. Now imagine having to choose your bag out of hundreds of cases of luggage. This was the scenario that Aira’s Cofounder and CEO, Suman Kanuganti, gave at a 2016 global technology conference. This task, which we are casu-


To help those faced with visibility challenges every day, Suman Kanuganti and his team created Aira, a live-time navigational service company that leverages wearable devices, human assisted AI, and widespread bandwidth. Aira was developed within AT&T Foundry for Connected Health, a workshop that fosters emerging Internet of Things (IoT) companies. Here, Suman was able to work closely with AT&T for

nine months before showcasing Aira at CES 2017. Aira utilizes innovative smart glasses technology, along with a dedicated team of certified agents, to guide the users’ around their surroundings while AT&T Dynamic Traffic Management gives Aira agents prioritized connectivity. The user taps on the glasses to connect to an agent who offers assistance. Using a video camera, the agents can “see” from the wearer’s perspective in near real-time and communicate back to the wearer. This way, Aira is able to help, not just in navigation, but also for various circumstances that require visionary aid. Suman’s goal is to expand on these services and develop better software to help those with dementia or autism.

About Suman Kanuganti Suman holds an MBA in Entrepreneurship and Finance, but more importantly, Suman was able to cultivate his vision from his roots, pulling from his Bachelor’s in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from Kakatiya University, India. His learnings as well as more than 10 years of expertise in leadership and tech has helped develop Aira into fruition, successfully enabling many to navigate independently and even allowing a visually impaired runner, Erich Manser, to finish this year’s Boston Marathon 2017. Beyond the marathon, Erich stated that Aira is helpful for everyday tasks, from picking out a special-occasion card to navigating through populated airports.


In addition, the chocolate and strawberry McCafé shake syrup has no high fructose corn syrup and the whipped topping served on all three flavors of shakes is made with no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. “This summer we have a sweet

Over the past two years, McDonald’s has made a series of changes to its menu, including the launch of All Day Breakfast and updated Chicken McNuggets, a new premium salad blend

Analysts had been expecting an increase of 4,000 new claims. The less volatile four-week moving average edged down to 240,750, also the lowest level since February.

With steady job creation over the last 11 months and unemployment at a 10-year low of 4.4 percent, the US labor market has shown signs of consistent tightening. Analysts say employers are forgoing layoffs for fear of not being able to replace the workers they let go, and anecdotal reports across the country show companies are finding it difficult to fill open positions, including for low-skill jobs.

and using real butter on its English taurants are independently owned and Muffins, bagels and biscuits, among operated by businessmen and women. For a limited time, the company is other significant changes. The updated making summer more Learn deliciousthe with others at sign of autism. soft serve is part of McDonald’s food the rich combination of chewy caramel and smooth milk chocolate pieces journey and another way the company to its iconic vanilla soft serve. The is helping customers feel good about Rolo McFlurry will be available na- the food they’re enjoying.

“We are proud to partner with McDonald’s to bring our dairy products from thousands of dairy farmers across the U.S. to their millions of customers daily,” said Barb O’Brien, president of Dairy Management Inc.

For the week ending May 13, new claims for unemployment benefits slipped to 232,000, down 4,000 from the prior week, marking the third consecutive decrease and the lowest level since February.

Though jobless benefits can see big swings from week to week, they can be used to gauge the prevalence of layoffs and the health of labor markets.

Desserts have been a favorite at McDonald’s for nearly 60 years. Last summer alone, McDonald’s customers enjoyed 68 million cones. This summer, guests can continue to enjoy their classic cone, but also celebrate the return of a fan favorite from 2012 — the Rolo McFlurry.

tionwide for a limited time from May 24 to Sept. 11.

The total number of people seeking unemployment insurance also to fell to its lowest level in almost 30 years, in line with the record low unemployment rate.

New claims for unemployment benefits have remained below 300,000 for more than two years, a streak not matched since 1973. The latest week’s data covers the period used for the monthly employment survey for May, which will be released June 2.

surprise,” said Darci Forrest, senior director of menu innovation at McDonald’s. “We’ve been raising the bar at McDonald’s on serving delicious food that our customers can feel good about eating. Soft serve now joins other changes we have made, such as removing artificial preservatives from McNuggets, committing to cage-free eggs by 2025 and only serving chicken made from chicken not treated with antibiotics important to human medicine*. This, combined with the fact that 100 percent of the milk used in our soft serve is U.S. sourced, makes this classic treat even more enjoyable during the hot summer months.”

AK BROOK, Ill. McDonald’s USA announced that its vanilla soft serve – featured Lack of speech is a in its popular vanilla cone, McCafé Shakes and McFlurry desserts – is made with no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives. The introduction of the soft serve began in Fall of 2016 and has nearly completed its transition to all 14,000+ restaurants nationwide. A popular destination for cold, sweet treats, this change impacts 60% of the desserts McDonald’s serves.


ASHINGTON | AFP New claims for US jobless benefits drifted lower in the second week of May, the Labor Department reported Thursday, continuing a record low streak and reflecting tightness in the job market.

The total number claiming benefits fell by 22,000 to 1,898,000, also a third straight drop its lowest point since November 1988. The measure has not been lower since December Jacob Sanchez Diagnosed with1973. autism

Sweet Surprise: McDonald’s unveils a change to its Vanilla Soft Serve

Removal of an artificial flavor from vanilla soft serve which already had no artificial colors or preservatives – positively changed Vanilla Cone, McCafé Shakes and McFlurry

US jobless claims edge downward

*Farmers still use ionophores, a class of antibiotics that are not prescribed to people, to help keep chickens healthy. About McDonald’s USA McDonald’s USA, LLC, serves a variety of menu options made with quality ingredients to more than 25 million customers every day. 90 percent of McDonald’s 14,000 U.S. res-

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To get out ahead of possible inflation, the Federal Reserve has raised its benchmark interest rates twice since December and forecasts another two increases this year.

US dollar ends sharply dearer against rupee


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FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

Where dating apps save lives


ften used for hooking up in the U.S., social media sites are a rallying point for LGBT communities in countries with restrictive laws. More than 70 countries have laws that make same-sex relations a punishable offense. In India, for example, 75 percent of LGBT people surveyed fear for their lives because of their sexual orientation. A lot of people “don’t even want to accept that we exist,” a gay man tells correspondent Dan Savage. That oppression has helped give rise to a whole universe of online options that help LGBT people connect. The dating app Grindr is one of those options, and the company has a division called Grindr for Equality that aims to “mobilize, inform, and empower” its users. Director Jack Harrison-Quintana talks about his group’s work and why social media can be a lifeline for people living in countries where being gay is essentially illegal. How is social media changing the LGBT experience globally, both for the better and potentially worse? Unlike other groups who may be minorities within society, LGBT people don’t necessarily have LGBT parents, right? I’m Mexican-American, and my mom is Mexican-American, so growing up I could see from her what that means, learn about our culture, our history. That’s just not true for LGBT people, which leads to some of the extreme isolation that you see in the worst cases. Social media overall is a way for us to connect to the community and to learn about this group that any individual LGBT person is a part of. Grindr has users in 197 countries. A lot of people are using it in places where there may be no gay bars, there may be no gay youth groups. So it’s a really important way for people to be able to even just see that other LGBT people in their culture exist, and to be able to engage with those folks. It has a huge impact on people’s sense of themselves. The flip side of that is that some

people are living in very homophobic countries, and none of the positives of the social media impact can ever entirely take that away. Are some people being targeted for using Grindr or other apps like it? How can you address that? Yeah, we do see that in certain places. We do our best to give people the information that they need to make really good choices about their safety, especially in countries where there’s the most danger. Our safety recommendations are translated into 10 languages. They include things like maybe not putting a picture of your face as your profile picture, [or] maybe you don’t meet someone unless you can identify a mutual friend who’s within the community. A lot of the work that I do is based on the power of our in-app message system. Through that system I can send messages in any language to users based on their location anywhere in the world. In the places where things are toughest, we put out messages from organizations that are [focused] on keeping LGBT people safe or making sure that they have access to health and legal services if anything does happen to them. So we’ll work with them to also send out messages that are even more tailored, like if we find out that there could be increased police raids in a certain town, we get tips on that and send it out to everyone in that area. Can you talk more about what Grindr is doing in India and the groups it works with? One good example is the Gay Housing Assistance Resource, which is a really cool use of social media that started on Facebook. They are about matching LGBT people who moved out from their families with other LGBT roommates. The norm in India is actually that a lot of people live with their families until they get married. But if that’s not the trajectory you’re on because you’re LGBT, it can be really challenging to convince your family to let you go out and live on your

Amongst the crowd

own or live with roommates. So GHAR sprang up as a space where people can match with other people to live with. We worked really closely with them on making sure that Grindr users know about and have access to that service. Another organization we’ve worked with is called Harmless Hugs. It’s been expanding [in India], and they basically do informal gatherings for group therapy and support. It also started as an online group and has become an in-person thing. Do you find there are places that are more dangerous for LGBT people than the average person might realize? Let me flip that around for you. Sometimes people ask me what is the best place in the world to be LGBT, which is a little bit of a complicated question because there are a lot of different factors. But if you look purely at the laws themselves, the country that I would personally rate the best in the world is Argentina. I think that surprises people because I think they expect me to say Norway or Sweden or Germany. There is a perception that Thailand is kind of like this queer paradise. People have a sense that there is this longstanding culture around trans femininity. The reality is that, much like everywhere in the world, there’s still a lot of transphobia there and there’s still a lot of homophobia. Even though there are reasonably good laws for protecting trans women, they’re still often pushed into very limited career opportunities, and they still may face extreme family rejection. I think it’s hard to overestimate homophobia, biphobia, and transphobia all across the world. What progress or signs of hope have you seen in your work? This decade has brought more progress than I ever even could imagine, especially when I think about trans issues. Ten years ago when I started in this work, I would never have thought that trans issues would be as visible as they are in so many parts of the world. (-National Geographic)

Gardening as art goes on show at famous UK festival garden decorations are giant animals made out of artificial grass or the graffiti in a space entitled “Greening grey Britain”. “Gardens and plants are no longer an optional and decorative nice-to-have. They’re essential,” said the urban garden’s designer Nigel Dunnett.

Birmingham City Council entry in the show, it is based on literature (Photo: AFP)


ONDON, United Kingdom | AFP | - From the world’s hottest chilli to a garden inspired by music, Britons celebrate their love for gardening this week at the Chelsea Flower Show, one of the world’s biggest horticultural festivals.

mental threats, or improve physical and mental health, or inspire poets and musicians. Garden designer Chris Beardshaw said his exhibit was inspired by Bach and Mozart.

With the champagne already flowing at the week-long show where more than 165,000 visitors are expected, Queen Elizabeth II herself will be touring some of the hundreds of exhibitors later on Monday.

“I’m immersing myself in the music... Trying to picture how these music elements fit,” he told AFP.

And the Royal Horticultural Society denied rumours that Brexit was throwing a spanner in the works by putting off some of the festival’s sponsors.

On the eve of the opening, he had an unexpected surprise that will be familiar to many gardeners.

“There are only three show gardens less than last year but we have novelties like the two Feel Good gardens, which celebrate the five senses,” RHS spokeswoman Alice McDermott told AFP. Visitors have to pay between £63 and £80 (70 and 88 euros, $82 and $104) to enter the show, set in the exclusive surroundings of the grounds of the 17th century Royal Hospital Chelsea. For anyone who believes that plants are just plants and gardens are purely decorative, the Chelsea Flower Show offers a magnificent rebuttal. The far from ordinary gardens include some to fight against environ-

“It’s always a challenge to be in the show, you have to be ready for a precise day,” he said.

“We discovered that a fox was making a nest in the centre of a herbaceous border... Quite a damage!” - ‘Dragon’s Breath’ At a garden nearby, cabbages and salads are arranged in neat rows to “recreate the feeling when you stand too close to a speaker stack at a concert -- the sensation of music reverberating through your whole body,” said its designer James Alexander Sinclair. There is no sign of garden gnomes or other decorations considered an affront to good taste by the garden connoisseurs. Instead, a sculptor can be found “balancing stones” for a feature. The only concessions to common

“With pollution levels dangerously high in cities and flash-flooding devastating areas of the country, we need to all embrace the fact that plants help mitigate against some of the biggest environmental threats facing us today,” he said. The plants in the garden absorb pollution and are resistant to a scarcity of water -- a low risk in Britain -- and only require intermittent care. The show, which is open until Saturday, reserved a few surprises even for its participants. While growing a chilli pepper for the show, horticulturalist Bob Price said he had accidentally created the strongest specimen in the world. The “Dragon’s Breath” scores 2.4 million on the Scoville scale -a measure of the fieriness of chilli peppers -- in what Price hopes will become a new Guinness world record.


very year on the day of Ashura, the martyrdom of the third Shia Imam, people of Bijar (an Iranian city) attend to special and unique mourning ceremony. I travelled for about 1800 kilometres in order to attend the ceremony, during the ceremony and bustle of the crowd; an impressive and surprised look of a young boy attracted my attention” - Photographer Mehdi Nazeri

Outcry at Philippine ban on religious ‘distractions’


ANILA, Philippines | AFP - Philippine authorities have banned hanging rosaries and religious icons off car dashboards because of safety concerns, prompting an outcry from the Catholic Church which insists they offer divine intervention on the nation’s chaotic roads.

Image: Shutterstock


The ban, which will take effect on Friday, is part of a wideranging new law aimed at eliminating distractions for drivers. These include talking or sending messages on mobile phones, putting on make-up, and eating or drinking coffee while driving, according to Aileen Lizada, spokeswoman for the national transport regulatory agency. But it is the ban on the religious icons and trinkets -- which visitors to the Philippines inevitably see hanging off rearview mirrors in taxis and the colourful mini-buses known as jeepneys -- that has stirred the most controversy. Roughly 80 percent of the Philippines’ 100 million people are Catholic, a legacy of centuries of Spanish colonial rule that ended in 1898, and the religious icons in vehicles are seen by many as offering God’s protection while driving.

“This is an overreaction, insensitive and lacks common sense,” Father Jerome Secillano, executive secretary for public affairs at the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, told AFP on Monday. “With these religious images, drivers feel they are safer, that there is divine intervention and they are being guided and protected.” Piston, an association of jeepney drivers and owners, also criticised the plan, saying there was no data showing rosaries and religious trinkets caused accidents. “Do not meddle with the drivers’ faith in God,” Piston president George San Mateo told AFP.

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RADHA - A short film in a modern setting


s part of the upcoming Houston Asian American Pacific Islander Film Festival and a free screening at America Cinemas Houston, the film RADHA is an adaptation of the famous Vedic Indian story - that of the Lord Krishna and his first love, Radha.

“Radha” came to life. “It felt right to tell it all through Radha’s voice - a perspective I hadn’t seen too often before, in previous retellings. A female point-of-view. After all, while all the devotees doted after Krishna, it was Radha who was

at the center of his universe. She was his strength, and I wanted that power to be represented. “Half the film is set in modern American times, the other in ancient India - this was done to show the uni-

versal quality of their relationship. I wanted to create an experience for my viewers (Hindus & Non-Hindus alike) - recreate the emotions one feels when in love, both the highs and the lows. “At the film’s completion now, I’m excited about the final product and look forward to sharing, with a wider audience, my take on Radha & Krishna’s eternal story.”

Below: Director Rupeshi Shah

While Krishna is worshipped by many devotees, it is Radha who’s at the center of His universe. He’s the flirtatious, popular boy; She’s the reasonable, beautiful girl. Their relationship is eternal - but when one of the other ‘gopis’ (cow herding girls) catches the eye of Krishna, Radha begins to question it all. For one of the first times, we see the couple’s age-old story told from her point-of-view. Completed in 2015 and presented in English, the short film was directed by Rupeshi Shah. The film had original music composed for it as well, by Reena Esmail. Ms. Shah explains that “much of my crew was South Asian as well, like my cinematographer Armaan Virani. And of course the talent - Shunori Ramanathan as Radha and Ram Kanneganti as Krishna.

forms of art - paintings, text, songs, etc. Its themes of first love & heartbreak always resonated with me. What I felt was missing though, was an adaptation that truly humanized them. Made them relat“Radha & Krishna have been depicted in many able to all. With this in mind, my directorial debut

The film’s been selected to play at multiple film festivals and here in Houston. For information on the local showing, please visit HAAPIFilmFest.

Nearly 32 million Americans engage in extreme binge-drinking: study ASHINGTON (AFP) Almost 32 million US adults admit to extreme binge-drinking at least once in the past year, meaning they consumed eight to 10 alcoholic beverages -- or more -- in a single sitting, US government scientists said on Wednesday.


half, or 50,000, die from injuries and overdoses associated with high blood alcohol levels.” Binge-drinking is defined as having four or more drinks on an occasion for women, or five or more for men. Extreme binge-drinking means im-

or more drinks in one sitting. For women, five percent reported drinking double the binge-drinking threshold -- or between eight and 11 drinks in a sitting -- and three percent reported drinking 12 or more at least once in the past year. People who drank to excess were far more likely to wind up in the emergency room, have a substance use disorder, get hurt because of drinking, be the driver in a car crash, and be arrested or have legal problems resulting from alcohol use.

50,000 persons die from injuries and overdoses associated with high blood alcohol levels (File photo) The study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that instances of extreme binge-drinking from 2012-2013 were up significantly from a decade earlier. “This important study reveals that a large number of people in the United States drink at very high levels and underscores the dangers associated with such ‘extreme’ binge drinking,” said George Koob, director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). “Of the nearly 90,000 people who die from alcohol each year, more than

bibing at least twice that amount. Using US government health surveys, researchers found that 39 percent of adult males and 27 percent of adult females reported “level one” binge-drinking during the previous year, meaning four to seven drinks for women, or five to nine drinks for men. Among men, 11 percent reported “level two” binge-drinking, meaning they consumed 10-14 drinks on a single occasion. Seven percent of men reported drinking “level three” bingeing, or 15

Extreme bingedrinking was also particularly common among people who used other drugs. “Drinking at such high levels can suppress areas of the brain that control basic life-support functions such as breathing and heart rate, thereby increasing one’s risk of death,” said senior author Aaron White.

Knights of Columbus’ financial forms show wealth, influence by Tom Roberts


he Irish Catholics who poured into the United States by the hundreds of thousands in the mid-19th century, hoping to escape famine and professing a faith that was despised by many, strained to gain a toehold in a hostile culture. The Knights of Columbus was born out of that struggle, one of a spate of fraternal and beneficial organizations to emerge in Catholic circles in an effort to provide protection and a path to assimilation into a new country. Founded in 1882, the Knights’ original mission was to save women and children from poverty through an insurance program. But today, one wonders what Fr. Michael McGivney, the charismatic young priest who founded the Knights of Columbus in a church basement in New Haven, Connecticut, would make of

his organization. Almost 2 million men call themselves Knights of Columbus, and the organization reported revenues of more than $2.2 billion in 2015, the latest year such information is available. Moreover, in the past decade, the organization has donated $1.55 billion to charity, according to the Knights. Much of the Knights’ influence occurs behind the scenes, but it’s not hidden. Most of it is contained on tax forms that are public and that nonprofits are required to file annually. The data in this report is largely contained in Knights of Columbus’ 990 tax forms filed for the years 2013, 2014 and 2015, as well as from news releases and other statements contained on the organization’s website. While no simple means exists to measure the effect of the Knights’ spending, there is hardly a corner of the Catholic world where the resources of this international force

have not left an impression. Its capacity for funding has given the Knights of Columbus an inordinately loud voice, potentially drowning out that of others, and no other lay group can match the Knights’ ability to leave its mark on the church. Some worry that such influence can actually distort the church’s ecclesiology, its structure and its governance. (-NCRonline)

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

James Bond actor Roger Moore dies aged 89 Family confirms death in Switzerland after bout with cancer of British actor who played the iconic spy in seven films.

Moore made his first Bond film Live and Let Die in 1957 [Photo: AFP]


oger Moore, the longest-serving actor to play the iconic British spy James Bond, has died in Switzerland aged 89 after a brief bout with cancer.

until he was 57.

His family confirmed on Tuesday via Twitter that “our father, Sir Roger Moore, passed away today”.

His post-Bond films included such forgettable efforts as The Quest with Jean-Claude Van Damme and Spice World with the Spice Girls.

“We are all devastated,” the message said. Moore acted in a total of seven James Bond films, including The Man With the Golden Gun and The Spy Who Loved Me. Born in London on October 14, 1927, Moore - the only child of a policeman studied painting before enrolling in the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Moore played a few small roles in theatre and films before his mandatory army duty, then moved to Hollywood in the 1950s. In 1954, he appeared opposite Elizabeth Taylor in The Last Time I Saw Paris and with Eleanor Parker in Interrupted Melody the following year. Beginning with Live and Let Die in 1973, Moore would make six more James Bond films: The Man With the Golden Gun, The Spy Who Loved Me, Octopussy, Moonraker, For Your Eyes Only and A View to a Kill over the next 12 years. And while the Bond of the Ian Fleming novels that the films were based on was generally described as being in his 30s, Moore would stay with the role

He continued to work regularly in films after handing over Bond to Timothy Dalton, but never with the same success.

- UNICEF role In 1991, Moore became a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF, having been introduced to the role by the late actress Audrey Hepburn. As Hepburn had, he threw much of his energy into the task. “I felt small, insignificant and rather ashamed that I had traveled so much making films and ignored what was going on around me,” he said in describing how the work had affected him. Moore received the Dag Hammarskjold Inspiration Award for his work with UNICEF and was named a commander in France’s National Order of Arts and Letters in 2008, an award he said was worth “more than an Oscar”. That same year he published an autobiography, My Word Is My Bond, which included details about his work on the Bond films, his friendship with Hepburn, his encounters with Cary Grant, Frank Sinatra, Elizabeth Taylor and other stars, and his health struggles - including a bout with prostate cancer, which he beat. (-AFP)

Young Life


Section 2


Better detection may explain higher child cancer numbers: UN


ARIS, France | AFP Global childhood cancer rates jumped 13 percent in the decade to 2010 compared to the 1980s, according to a UN-backed study released Wednesday that says the increase may be due in part to improved detection. For children under 15, the incidence rate of cancer was 140 per million during the first decade of this century, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) reported in The Lancet Oncology. Part of the increase compared to the 1980-1990 period “may be due to better, or earlier, detection or these cancers,” the agency said in a statement. Data collected on 300,000 cancer cases diagnosed in 2001-2010 showed that leukaemia accounted for nearly a third of childhood cancers, followed by tumours of the central nervous system (20 percent) and lymphomas (12 percent). In children under five, a third of cases were embryonal tumours, such as neuroblastoma.

Director Christopher Wild.

Data collected on 300,000 cancer cases diagnosed in 62 countries in 2001-2010 showed that leukaemia accounted for nearly a third of childhood cancers.

Cancers in children are more likely to be triggered by genetic factors. The report makes no attempt to determine what portion of the reported increase in incidence is due to better diagnoses, or other factors such as infections and pollution. Data for the study came from 153 cancer registries in 62 countries, departments and territories representing about 10 percent of the world’s children. But coverage was very uneven: nearly 100 percent of the child population in the North America and Europe was included, but only five percent or less for children in Africa and Asia.

Incidence among adolescents 15 to 19 years old over the same decade was 185 per million.

In low-income countries, data collection is difficult due to under-funded health systems and statistical services.

“Cancer is a significant cause of death in children and adolescents, in spite of its relatively rare occurence,” compared to adult cancer rates, said IARC

“Often focusing on the small proportion of cancers occurring in children is not seen as a priority,” the IARC said in a statement.

Today’s young workers are more likely than ever to have a bachelor’s degree by Nikki Graf


s U.S. college graduates earn their bachelor’s degrees and enter the job market this month, data from the Census Bureau show that the share of college-educated young adults in today’s workforce is higher than ever before. Four-in-ten Millennial workers ages 25 to 29 had at least a bachelor’s degree in 2016, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of Current Population Survey data. That compares with 32% of Generation X workers and smaller shares of the Baby Boom and Silent generations when they were in the same age range. In 2016, almost half (46%) of employed Millennial women ages 25 to 29 had a bachelor’s degree or more, up substantially from 36% of Gen X women workers when they were the same age in 2000. Millennial men in the workforce are also more likely to hold

a bachelor’s degree than their Gen X counterparts were as young adults. Among employed men ages 25 to 29, the share of college graduates rose from 29% in 2000 to 36% in 2016 – a considerable increase, but still smaller than that seen among young women. Consequently, the gender gap in college attainment among young workers grew to 10 percentage points in 2016. This gender gap is driven in part by the fact that young women are more likely to finish college than their male counterparts. In 2016, among 25- to 29-year-olds, women were 7 percentage points more likely than comparable men to have at least a bachelor’s degree. Asian workers in the U.S. are the most likely to have completed at least a bachelor’s degree. In 2016, about two-thirds (65%) of Asian workers ages 25 to 29 had at least a bachelor’s degree, compared with 47% of white workers in this age group. (-Pew Research Group)

‘Wonder Woman’ star Gal Gadot: It’s ‘really magical’ to inspire youth with ‘strong female figure’


onder Woman Gal Gadot, the most powerful woman in the superhero world, said it’s “really, really magical” to play such a strong female on the big screen and to be an inspiration for girls and boys alike.

The actress, who revealed she was five months pregnant with her youngest daughter while doing reshoots for the film, said “it’s crazy to think this character has been around for over 75 years and this is the first time we see her on the big screen and actually get to establish her origin story.” Being the one chosen to play such an iconic and powerful character was “really exciting. It was an honor for me to do this part. I’m all about strong female figures and I love Wonder Woman,” said Gadot, who added that “she never dreamt of being an actress.” Robin Wright, who plays Antiope, Wonder Woman’s aunt and mentor, said it was “really, really empowering” being on an estrogen-filled set surrounded by amazing, strong women. “And we were strong. We didn’t just feel strong. We were strong,” Wright said of their rigorous exercise regimen. “All of us -- we trained every day, horseback riding, martial arts training, weight lifting and 2,000 to 3,000 calories a day.” Director Patty Jenkins said

Wonder Woman star Gal Gadot (above) is inspiring ‘girl power’ with the superhero movie promotions (Photo below: Pintrest) she’s a “huge believer in the story of becoming a hero” and hopes everyone who sees the film feels inspired. “I hope they have a great time and I hope they love it and I hope they laugh, but I also hope they feel inspired to be a hero in their own life,” she said. “And learn love and thoughtfulness as well as strength.” (-ABC News)

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Ronald McDonald’s House of Charities Scholarship benefits 35 students by Jacob David


OUSTON, TX - A fabulous luncheon, one that parents and students, recipients of the famous Ronald McDonald House of Charities will remember, was held at the Omni Houston Hotel, on Wednesday May 17, 2017. The luncheon was presented by McDonald’s Operators Association of Greater Houston. There was a special category for Asia Scholarship program that benefited 10 Asian students showing increased achievement levels in academia. There were 25 RMHC Scholars. The scholars were given time to speak on stage, tell the audience of their vision and goals for pursuing a higher degree, thank their family members, counselors and teachers for guiding them so far. The students, parents, counselors and professionals gathered, were welcomed by Matt Kades. The Master of Ceremonies was Russell Lewis, KHOU Channel 11 News, who introduced the Keynote Speaker Dr Sanghamitra Misra, Medical Director, Mobile Clinics Program with the Texas Children’s Hospital. Dr. Misra spoke about her childhood, her cultural and educational challenges, and how she struggled to find her passion in life. She soon became interested to learn about the influx of refugees into America and the difficulties they faced. Dr. Misra decided she could help them adapt to the new living conditions and get over their cultural barriers. These refugees she said, were running out of government support after 8 months of living in the U.S. This was a hardship many refugee families struggle to overcome, even to this day, she reminded everyone. Her work is an ongoing personal project that benefit so many families. Dr. Misra urged the scholars to find similar passions to get involved in their communities and find ways of giving back. Finding time for passions outside of academic pursuits make life more worthwhile, she indicated. This is the 27th season of RMHC of Greater Houston/ Galveston Scholarship Luncheons honoring eighty-five of the brightest students. Thirtyfive students in the Asia Programs were celebrated. Over the last 3 decades, the Global office of Ronald McDonald House Charities has awarded over 3 million dollars in col-

Scholarship Recipients cheer at the Ronald McDonald House of Charities event (Photos courtesy of MOAGH)

Dr. Sanghamitra Misra delivers the Keynote Address at the 2017 RMHC-ASIA and Scholars Scholarship Luncheon at The Omni Houston. (Photos courtesy of MOAGH) lege funding in 3 decades. Mary Redmond, President, Board of Directors and RMHC AAFA Scholarship Program Chair, was present along with Ernest Redmond, her husband. Both of them recognize the importance and value of a good education and the benefits such a scholarship program provides to stu-

dents who are dedicated to obtaining a degree. In her words, “we would like to thank all the parents, families, school counselors and friends of the scholars, for believing in your student and encouraging them to follow their dreams! Your encouragement and support means more to them than you can imagine.”

Campaigners say kids in war zones need education


“I think it’s so important that girls and boys have a strong female figure to look up to,” Gadot, 32, said on “Good Morning America.” “We always had Superman and Batman, which is awesome, but it’s also very important for all of us to have this amazing character.”

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

HE HAGUE, Netherlands | AFP - Campaigners Friday pleaded for more help for millions of children in conflict zones who are missing years of school, revealing only two percent of humanitarian aid funds goes towards education.

percent of humanitarian funds go to education” and urging the UN Security Council to look at the issue.

More than 250 million children around the world don’t go to school, according to Unicef, and one quarter of the world’s school-age children live in areas threatened by war.

More than half of South Sudan’s primary school kids, and those in the first classes of secondary school, are no longer receiving any schooling.

After six years of war in Syria, almost a million Syrian children refugees live in Lebanon and Jordan and more than half of them are still not receiving any education, said Kevin Watkins, chief executive of Save the Children UK. “You will wipe out a whole primary school generation, before the international community even moves on education,” he told a conference in The Hague.

There was also a focus on South Sudan where a civil war has left tens of thousands dead since 2013 and displaced some 3.5 million people.

“We need to look at the lack of education as an emergency situation,” said American actor Forest Whitaker, UNESCO special envoy for peace and founder of the Whitaker Peace and Development initiative. Founder of the Education Above All (EAA) campaign,

Sheikha Moza bint Nasser alMisnad, mother of the Qatari emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, said there was “an unprecedented crisis” with education being used as “an instrument of war”. “Education is the cornerstone of sustainable development,” she added. “We cannot construct a building if the cornerstones keep getting destroyed. Nor can we construct a durable building without investing in education as a tool in post-conflict recovery”. Chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Court Fatou Bensouda highlighted how often in war zones schools are turned into training bases for militias, children are kidnapped to be indoctrinated as child soldiers, spies and sex slaves.

“I think what we need is universal plans of action for all refugee children... no refugee child should be out of school more than a term or two terms,” he added at the Hague Institute for Global Justice. International advocate for children’s rights, Graca Machal, the widow of Nelson Mandela, said: “It’s time perhaps we rethink how we address what we call humanitarian settings.” “We have been focusing on providing food, health, water,” she said, adding that “only two

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FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

Bollywood -Hollywood

Section 2


False stories cost Hollywood’s Rebel Wilson roles


YDNEY, Australia | AFP - Hollywood star Rebel Wilson on Monday accused an Australian publisher of portraying her as a serial liar in a series of articles she said cost her lucrative movie roles.


“Dangal” has raked in 776 million yuan ($112 million) since it opened on May 5, official data showed Monday. Box office monitoring site mtime. com says this makes it the highest-grossing non-Hollywood foreign film in China.

“They refused to let the facts get in the way of a good story,” he said, The Age newspaper reported.

Universal’s “The Fate of the Furious” holds the box office record in China for any film, raking in 2.7 billion yuan in receipts since its debut on April 14.

“This defendant knows that what it wrote was simply false.”

The publisher owns magazines Woman’s Day, Australian Women’s Weekly and OK

Rebel Wilson was portrayed as a serial liar in a series of articles she said cost her lucrative movie roles. (-Photo: Vanity Fair) Magazine. Collins said the actor, who flew to Melbourne from the United States for the trial, had been robbed of acting opportunities as a result of the stories.

“The phone just stopped ringing,” he said. The trial is expected to run for three weeks and include testimony from Wilson’s family.

American Dream takes a beating in Cannes movies by Katy Lee


ANNES, France | AFP - Elvis Presley’s car has broken down and a cowboy’s career is over. In the days of Donald Trump, movies showing at the Cannes festival are taking a long, hard look at the American Dream.

ture of insecurity as she follows aspiring rodeo stars in Trumpvoting South Dakota. Brady -- played by real-life cowboy Brady Jandreau -- is a talented bucking bronco rider

the dreams are broken,” Zhao said. Jarecki too, while describing Trump as “a monster at the helm”, said there was reason for hope.

Trump looms large over the film, which intersperses footage of the then-candidate with performances from musicians crammed into the car as it trundles around the country. The symbolism is lost on no one when the handsome Rolls breaks down on the road. - Humanising Trump country Jarecki has spent years interviewing people warning that America was broken, but he is not the only director at Cannes to tackle life on the margins. French film-maker Vladimir de Fontenay was inspired by his own US road trips to make “Mobile Homes”, the tale of a young mother and son who live between motels on the Canadian border and unoccupied houses that they break into to sleep. The idea of America as a land of opportunity is stripped bare. The eight-year-old boy in the film, named Bone, is never at school; his education consists of his mother, played by British actress Imogen Poots, teaching him to flee diners without paying the bill. In “The Rider”, director Chloe Zhao also paints a pic-

“Dangal” is a Hindi word used to describe a wrestling competition. In Chinese the film’s name has been translated into “Let’s Wrestle, Dad”. The movie was released in India on December 23 last year and quickly became the highest-grossing Bollywood film of all time, beating the 2014 science fiction film “PK”.

The Aamir Khan production is setting records in China themes in the film. The issues appear to have struck an emotional response with Chinese audiences. Moviegoers praised it on social media site Weibo, highlighting its important lessons on rearing and educating children. “A parent myself, I got some inspiration and enlightenment on child education after watching the movie,” said one user.

“It is also a story that motivates self-improvement for children.” Another said: “I brought my parents and parents-in-law to watch it for the second time, and once again my cheeks were stained with tears.” An opinion piece published in the People’s Daily, China’s Communist Party mouthpiece, said the film’s focus on “female rights” had also left a “deep impression on audiences”.

Stallone good for Rambo remake


UMBAI - Getting a message from Sylvester Stallone about a Bollywood Rambo remake was like “an endorsement from God”, the film’s director has said. Sid Anand told fans there would be none of the singing and dancing often associated

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with Bollywood however. “I wouldn’t do that to Rambo,” he told the BBC. “That’s like blasphemy.” The movie is being launched at the Cannes Film Festival - though filming doesn’t start until later this year.


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For Jarecki, who saw the film premiere to strong reviews at the world’s biggest film festival this weekend, there is no better metaphor for America than Elvis’ demise from global sex icon to a tubby Las Vegas performer who died on the toilet.

It sees a series of interviewees reflect on America’s problems, from working-class residents in Presley’s Mississippi hometown to Public Enemy rap star Chuck D and actors Alec Baldwin, Ashton Kutcher and Ethan Hawke.

Geeta won a gold medal for India at the 2010 Commonwealth Games while her sister topped the podium at the same event in 2014.

Gender discrimination and strict parenting are among the

In “Promised Land”, a documentary almost as brash and bold as the US president, award-winning film-maker Eugene Jarecki takes a road trip around America in a gleaming 1963 Rolls-Royce once owned by the king of rock ‘n’ roll.

Part music documentary and part blistering indictment of the state of the nation, “Promised Land” was shot during the 2016 presidential campaign.

The Indian movie, directed by Nitesh Tiwari, is based on the true story of wrestling coach Mahavir Singh Phogat, who defies the odds by raising his daughters Geeta and Babita Phogat to become champion wrestlers.

“Dangal” is believed to have made around $233 million in worldwide box office sales, according to industry estimates. It made around 3.87 billion rupees ($60 million) in India alone, analysts say.

Film-makers from France to China -- as well as at home -are finding fertile ground in a country whose politics is itself a daily drama.

“America had become a fat Elvis,” the leftwing US director told AFP. “We had been beautiful once, and we rose to a height too young too fast.”

‘Dangal’ wrestles its way into Chinese moviegoers’ hearts EIJING, China | AFP - A Bollywood film about a father who trains his daughters to become world-class wrestlers has broken a box office record in China, where its focus on feminism and tough love has resonated with audiences.

On day one of a defamation trial in Victoria state’s Supreme Court, Wilson’s barrister Matthew Collins told the jury that Bauer Media “tore down an Australian star to sell magazines”.

The Sydney-born actor, who starred in “The Bridesmaids” and “Pitch Perfect”, is suing the media group for articles in 2015 that claimed Wilson lied about her name, age and background in order to advance her Hollywood career.

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Filmmaker and director of ‘The Rider’, Chloe Zhao (Photo: AFP) who faces giving up his dreams for a job at a supermarket checkout after suffering a nearfatal accident. At home is a father who drinks and gambles, frittering away cash that could otherwise be used to support his mentally-disabled sister. Zhao calls herself “as liberal as a person can get” but said she wanted to use a personal story to show a different side of a US heartland demonised for backing Trump. “Brady and a lot of young cowboys did not vote for Trump, but their parents did,” the Beijing-born director told AFP. “Some of the most hardworking, generous people I’ve met in my whole life didn’t really want to vote for him, but did. “My calling is to step onto the other side and humanise and portray the struggles of many Trump voters,” she said, adding she has “a lot of compassion” for rural and rustbelt Americans who feel their identity is slipping away from them. - Cry for help Zhao’s America is far away from what she called the “white picket fence” ideal, but she rejects the idea that her film shows a country without hope. One of her characters, she points out, is a cowboy friend of Brady’s who has been paralysed after his own riding accident -- yet insists he will one day return to the saddle. “What I love about America is not necessarily the American dream but the fact that there’s so much spirit of fighting to continue to dream once

“Trump is a cry for help by America,” he told AFP. “It’s only been a hundred days and this guy has been torn apart by the press, by everyday people showing up at town hall meetings, by protests of hundreds of thousands to millions of people. The courts have stood up to Trump. “That’s the fabric of the American dream,” he said.


FRIDAY, May 26, 2017


Section 2


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Why 70 is New 65 for Retirement


Mosquito season is back – Prevent the bite day and night! Harris County officials present efforts in place to detect mosquitoes that carry disease


OUSTON (May 22, 2017) – It’s mosquito season again and our warm weather and humidity are an ideal mosquito-breeding ground. Out of the 56 species of mosquitoes found in our area, only a handful transmit disease. Harris County officials encourage residents to take precautionary measures to protect themselves from mosquito diseases such as West Nile Virus, Chikungunya, Dengue and Zika. Today, Monday, May 22 at 10:00 a.m. Harris County Judge Ed Emmett along with Dr. Umair A. Shah, Harris County Public Health (HCPH) Executive Director, and Dr. Mustapha Debboun, HCPH Mosquito & Vector Control Division (MVCD) Director, will explain procedures and technology used to track mosquitoes that could carry Zika or other known mosquitoborne diseases in our area. Media is invited to attend the news conference at the Harris County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management - TranStar located at 6922 Old Katy Rd, Houston, TX 77024.

To date, one mosquito sample has tested positive for West Nile Virus. Those areas have been sprayed to reduce the risk of disease. Although 83 cases of Zika have been reported in our area, none were transmitted locally. Currently, Harris County Public Health MVCD has not detected the presence of Zika, Dengue or Chikungunya in the local mosquito population. MVCD divides the county into 268 operational areas, including the City of Houston, and places over 500 mosquito traps throughout these areas to collect mosquitoes for testing. “Our mosquito and vector control program has been protecting Houston/ Harris County residents from mosquito-borne illnesses for more than 50 years, combining science and technology to fight disease carrying mosquitoes. However, we cannot do it alone. We need the help of our residents because fighting mosquito-borne illnesses like Zika, has to be a collaborative effort.” said Dr. Umair A. Shah, Executive Director of Harris County Public Health.

As we move into the summer months, enjoy the outdoors but remember to protect yourself and your family from mosquito-borne disease. Your best defense against being bitten is simply to be prepared. “Prevent the Bite Day and Night.” - Personal Protection • When outdoors, use an EPA-registered insect repellent containing the active ingredient DEET, Picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, IR3535, or 2-undecanone. Follow product instructions • If possible, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants - Mosquito-Proof Your Property • Remove/empty containers that can hold water such as tires, flowerpots and toys. • Change water in birdbaths and pet water bowls every 3 to 5 days. • Keep rain gutters free of debris such as leaves. • Install or repair screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes outside. Use air conditioning, if possible.

‘Smart genes’ account for 20% of intelligence: study by Marlowe Hood

One of the strongest -- and most surprising -- links was with autism, noted Posthuma.


ARIS, France | AFP - Scientists on Monday announced the discovery of 52 genes linked to human intelligence, 40 of which have been identified as such for the first time.

“Gene variants associated with high IQ are also associated with higher risk of autism spectrum disorder,” she said in an interview.

The findings also turned up a surprising connection between intelligence and autism that could one day help shed light on the condition’s origins. Taken together, the new batch of “smart genes” accounted for 20 percent of the discrepencies in IQ test results among tens of thousands of people examined, the researchers reported in the journal Nature Genetics. “For the first time, we were able to detect a substantial amount of genetic effects in IQ,” said Danielle Posthuma, a researcher at the Center for Neurogenomics and Cognitive Research in Amsterdam, and the main architect of the study. “Our findings provide insight into the biological underpinnings of intelligence,” she told AFP. Most of the newly discovered gene variants linked to elevated IQ play a role in regulating cell development in the brain, especially neuron differentiation and the formation of neural information gateways called synapses.

One gene in particular -- SHANK3 -- “is a very good candidate for explaining that,” she added.

An international team of 30 scientists combed through 13 earlier studies in which detailed genetic profiles and intelligence evaluations -- based on IQ tests -- had been compiled for 78,000 people, all of European descent. - Links with autism Increasingly powerful computers have made it possible to scan and compare hundreds of thousands of genomes, matching tiny variations in DNA with diseases, body types or, in this case, native smarts. The human genome has some 25,000 genes composed of more than three billion pairing of building-block molecules. Many of the genetic variations linked with high IQ also correlated with other attributes: more years spent in school, bigger head size in infancy, tallness, and even success in kicking the tobacco habit.

Conversely, the absence of certain high-IQ genes was more common in people suffering from schizophrenia or obesity. - A genetic IQ test? To challenge their own results, the researchers separately checked the 13 databases they drew from -- each had used slightly different IQ tests -- against the 52 gene variants to see if the combined match-up between intelligence and genetic profile held up. It did. They also scanned a very large database that had not been part of their study. Once again, the link held up, though -- as expected -- with a smaller percentage overlap between with IQ. Scientists would have to scan millions of genomes to find them all, and the raw data and computing power for doing so is still out of reach, Posthuma explained. “For intelligence, there are thousands of genes,” she said. “We have

A drink a day tied to higher breast cancer risk, report says By Jacqueline Howard


esearchers have long known that having too many cocktails might be associated with an increased risk of breast cancer.

Now, a new report from the World Cancer Research Fund and the American Institute for Cancer Research reveals just how much of a risk daily drinking might pose for both premenopausal and postmenopausal women. Sipping an average of 10 grams of alcohol a day -- equivalent to a small glass of wine, an 8-ounce beer or 1 ounce of hard liquor -- is associated with a 5% increased breast cancer risk in premenopausal women and 9% increase in postmenopausal women, said Dr. Anne McTiernan, a lead author of the new report and a cancer prevention researcher at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle. “I was most surprised by the alcohol result, that risk increases at just one drink a day, on average,” McTiernan said. “The increase with one drink a

day was small ... but the risk goes up from there. So that’s why AICR recommends no more than one alcohol drink a day for women to reduce risk for cancer.” Globally, breast cancer is the top cancer in women, in both the developed and developing worlds, according to the World Health Organization. In the United States and the United Kingdom, about 12% of women will develop breast cancer at some point in their lifetimes, according to the National Cancer Institute and the organization Cancer Research UK. For the new report, researchers analyzed 119 observational studies on breast cancer risk from around the world. Those studies included 12 million women total and more than 260,000 cases of breast cancer. Although breast cancer can occur in men, it is rare -- accounting for less than 1% of cancer incidence -- and such cases were not included in the report. (-CNN)

ge 70 is becoming the new target retirement age in the U.S. Half of all workers age 60 and older plan to retire at age 70 or not at all, a recent survey by CareerBuilder found.

But we can’t just keep adding the extra years of life to our retired years, so planning to work longer is a realistic goal. And there’s evidence that most Americans will enjoy a health status that could enable them to continue working well into their 70s. In addition, working longer is a good option (and maybe the only option) for aging workers with meager retirement savings, for a number of reasons: • It enables you to delay starting Social Security benefits, which significantly increases your expected lifetime payout and improves the financial security of your surviving spouse if you’re married. • You might receive health insurance from your employer at a reduced cost, compared to the cost of buying it on your own. • Working can help maintain your health, particularly if your employer offers a wellness program. • You might enjoy valuable social connections that research shows help enhance your health and well-being. However, unless you take steps to maintain your ability to continue working, delaying retirement may be more of a hope than a realistic strategy. These steps include maintaining your health, keeping abreast of new career opportunities, updating your job skills and refreshing and updating your job network. Let’s look at one example that shows the impact of delaying retirement from age 65 to 70 for a married couple, both age 65, who have that $500,000 in savings. Let’s also assume that the primary wage-earner makes about $75,000 per year.

detected the 52 most important ones, but there will be a lot more.” Experts agree that genes probably account for up to half of measured intelligence. But even if scientists could map all the genetic quirks that contribute to being brainy, that might not be enough to predict IQ, much less success in life. “We are looking at all these genetic effects in isolation,” said Posthuma. “Maybe it’s a certain pattern

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of genetic variants” -- and not just their sheer number -- “that makes you more intelligent.” The other major ingredient for achievement, she added, is exercising one’s quotient of grey matter, however big or small it might be. If someone with a big genetic endowment “chooses not to put any effort into learning, then that will definitely diminish their chances for achievement,” Posthuma said.

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Antivirus firm warns of cyberattacks on home appliances


RAGUE, Czech Republic | AFP | Avast, the company behind the leading antivirus software, warned Thursday against attacks on home appliances connected to the internet, calling hackers targeting home routers a major threat to consumers.

Vulnerable appliances include TV sets, audio systems, coffee machines and toys, according to the Prague-based company, which every month registers 444 million users and prevents 3.5 billion malware attacks and 500 million visits to harmful websites.


(AFP Photo) to pay ransom for it,” he said, chuckling. Internet security became a hot topic last Friday when a ransomware attack hit more than

300,000 computers worldwide, affecting the likes of Britain’s National Health Service, US package delivery giant FedEx and Germany’s Deutsche Bahn rail network.

Good-looking scientists perceived as ‘less able’: study

In February, London police arrested a Briton suspected of staging a cyberattack on household routers run by Deutsche Telekom in November 2016, which knocked an estimated million German households offline.

“Even if you turn off the TV, the router turns the TV back on and the user can’t see anything other than the Obama speech,” Steckler said, adding that the hacker could then hold the TV for ransom. “I know most people, especially Americans, care much more about their TV than they do about their data. They’d probably be much more willing

A new report by eMarketer said some 40 million Americans will engage with augmented reality monthly in 2017, up 30 percent over last year. Virtual reality is also growing, but at a slower pace, according to the researchers. The report said growth in augmented reality is being fueled by Snapchat Lenses, Facebook Stories, and Instagram Stories, while virtual reality usage is driven by 360-degree videos on social networks. “Users of Snapchat Lenses comprise the vast majority of our AR estimates,” said eMarketer forecasting analyst Chris Bendtsen. Lenses is the system enabling users to add special effects to video messages sent over Snapchat.

Steckler said his company had hacked into a router at a recent show in the United States to demonstrate the harm such attacks can do. Avast changed the router’s firmware, took control of a TV set and made it play a Barack Obama speech over and over.

Augmented reality gains led by Snapchat: researchers u g mented reality is seeing strong gains among Americans thanks to social networks like Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook, a market research firm said Monday.

“It’s a trivial thing to do and there’s nothing the user can do to fix it, other than to throw the router away and put in a new router,” Avast chief executive Vincent Steckler told reporters. Avast chief technology officer Ondrej Vlcek said that more and more people were using internet-enabled appliances which he described as “a total nightmare when it comes to security”.

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

Researchers found that people tend to think plainer-looking scientists do high-quality work (Photo: AFP)


IAMI, | AFP | 5/22/2017 - People are more interested in learning about the work of attractive scientists, but they see these good-looking researchers as less able than their averageappearing counterparts, a study suggested Monday. The report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) highlights the biases that come with judging

people on looks, particularly in the field of science, in an era of popular TED talks and increasing online engagement. “It seems that people use facial appearance as a source of information when selecting and evaluating science news,” said lead author Will Skylark from the Department of Psychology at the University of Cambridge.

“Snapchat growth will continue to contribute to AR users in the future, but in the next several years eMarketer also expects Facebook and Insta“It’s not yet clear how much this shapes the spread and acceptance of scientific ideas among the public, but the rapid growth in visual media means it may be an increasingly important issue.” For the report, researchers at the University of Cambridge and University of Essex conducted six separate studies to see how scientists’ looks affected public perception of

gram Stories to be significant growth drivers of AR usage,” Bendtsen added. Facebook Stories and Instagram Stories offer “filters” which allow users to add special effects to photos and videos, a feature widely seen as copying Snapchat’s augmented reality offerings. Augmented reality gadgetry overlays holograms on the real world in view, while virtual reality devices such as those from Facebook-owned Oculus and Sony’s PlayStation unit immerse users in fantasy worlds, often for gaming. The research firm said that by 2019, the number of augmented reality users is expected to top 54.4 million, or nearly one in five internet users. their research. Some 3,700 people aged 18-81 took part, from both the United States and Britain. Many were recruited online. Faces of scientists were randomly selected for the studies, sampling from the physics and genetics departments at US universities, and also from physics and biological sciences departments at British universities.

Virtual reality, meanwhile, has been slower to catch on and will not reach mass adoption in the US in the foreseeable future, according to eMarketer. The group said 22.4 million people in the US will use some form of virtual reality monthly in 2017, double the number from 2016. The category is being driven mainly by 360-degree photos and videos on Facebook and YouTube. The gaming industry is driving the growth of virtual reality headset usage, according to eMarketer, which said around 2.9 percent of the US population will use a VR headset this year, a figure expected to grow to 5.2 percent by 2019. (-AFP) One group of participants was asked to rate the scientists’ faces on their level of attractiveness. Then, two other groups of participants weighed in on how interested they would be in finding out more about each scientist’s research. They also were asked if each scientist “looked like someone who conducts accurate and important research.”

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All that glitters: Japan ‘nailists’ Fashion queen Sonam turn manicures into art Kapoor wows at Cannes by Anne Beade / Natsuko Fukue OKYO, Japan | AFP - Japanese manicurist Britney Tokyo may not be a household name, but she counts US pop singer Ariana Grande, model Gigi Hadid and TV personality Kim Kardashian among her growing fan base.


The nail artist -- whose designs are finding Internet fame -- was one of the chief attractions at this week’s Tokyo Nail Forum, where catwalk models flashed their electric-pink digits and visitors dressed up their fingers in almost every imaginable way. Glow-in-the-dark nails, glittery blue ones with red flames, nails with yellow smiley faces and unicorns were all on offer. Or how about turning your hands into a recreation of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves? “People tell me my design is like a fusion of Japan and the US,� said the manicurist, who moved to Los Angeles several years ago. “I say wood.�


Styled by her sister Rhea Kapoor, Sonam made a statement in an embellished chiffon dress on the red carpet (Photos: Twitter/ L’Oreal Paris India)


Beauty-conscious Japan is ground-zero for nail art, with the domestic market doubling in a decade to 220 billion yen ($1.98 billion) annually, according to the Japan Nailist Association (JNA)

he had, in an earlier interview, said that she did not prepare much for the Cannes Film Festival owing to her busy schedule, but her appearance on the red carpet of the French Riviera largely discredited her claim.

Sonam Kapoor looked more than resplendent when she made an entry at the red carpet at Cannes 2017 dressed in Elie Saab. The official Twitter account of L’Oreal Paris India posted a series of Sonam’s pictures (-Deccan Chroncle)

Little women stand tall at Dubai fashion show


Nail art is taking off in the US and is already popular in China and South Korea. But beauty-conscious Japan is ground-zero for the business. The domestic market has doubled in a decade to 220 billion yen ($1.98 billion) annually, according to the Japan Nailist Association (JNA), which said there are nearly 25,000 nail salons across the country. It’s been growing since Japan was introduced to US-made artificial nails about four decades ago. “Japanese manicurists are very detail oriented and always want to improve their skills,� said JNA board member Mihori Kinoshita on the sidelines of the three-day nail show. “That may be linked to the Japanese attention to craftsmanship.� - Aqua-green claws But what really super-charged the sector was the introduction of a soft gel that lasts for up to two months, far longer than traditional manicures which start chipping in about a week, said Koji Kawamoto, president of an Osaka-based nail product manufacturer. “At first there were just a few companies doing this but the market has grown a lot over the years,� said the industry veteran. “The number of manicurists has skyrocketed,� he added. Some 60 exhibitors had booths at the show, advertising nails adorned

Japan is home to nearly 25,000 nail salons, according to the Japan Nailist Association with stones, ribbons, flowers or ultralong talons that appeal to visitors like Mizuho Mobu. The 25-year-old manicurist sported aqua-green claws encrusted with fake diamonds that cost 12,000 yen and took three hours to apply. Mobu insists her nails are actually shorter than what she’s sported in the past. And they aren’t holding her back. Not much at least. “For me, these nails are short. I can use my smartphone without any trouble or do the dishes, but it’s impossible to open a can,� she conceded. “The longer the nails, the harder life gets.� Many designs take several hours or more to complete and cost 10,000 yen and up.

Most clients are women although nail art is also popular among some men who like to paint their nails the colour of favourite sports teams on special occasions. Hand-drawn paintings are also a big hit in Japan. But some people don’t have the patience, prompting Britney Tokyo to make some of her designs available in a quick and easy sticker format. “Painting was also popular in the US as well until last year but now fewer people want to spend such a long time waiting,� she said. “Customers don’t want to hang around for two or three hours.�


he International Dwarf Fashion Show aims to “reverse the discriminatory diktats of beauty�

The International Dwarf Fashion Show, a non-profit organisation that aims to “reverse the discriminatory diktats of beauty�, brought seven women with dwarfism to Dubai this week for a show dedicated to raising awareness about the need for more inclusivity in fashion. The International Dwarf Fashion Show has attracted worldwide attention since it launched in 2014, taking to the runway during New York Fashion Week, as well as in Tokyo and Paris, supported by France’s culture ministry. (Photo: AFP)

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Manchester United’s José Mourinho expresses sadness over Arena explosion

BCCI raises security concerns with ICC after Manchester attack

Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney stands with team-mates as they observe a minute’s silence for the victims of Monday’s attack at the Manchester Arena. Photo: Paul Ellis/AFP/Getty Images by Ben Grounds


ose Mourinho has spoken of the atrocity that left 22 people dead and 119 more injured at a Manchester pop concert, saying that ‘the people of Manchester will pull together as one.’ An explosion rocked the city on Monday evening when a bomb was let off at the end of a concert by pop star Ariana Grande at the Manchester Arena. The suicide bombing comes in the same week that Manchester United are preparing for their Europa League final against Ajax in Stockholm, and the act of barbarity sparked questions over whether or not the match would take place as planned. But European football’s governing body, UEFA, confirmed on Tuesday that there is no intention to postpone the game. In the wake of the incident, UEFA accepted United’s formal request to cancel their press conference ahead of the Europa League final, while the team held a minute’s silence at training before flying to Sweden.

Sportsmail understands it was Mourinho’s decision to cancel the press conference and the Portuguese has paid tribute to the victims of the the terror attack, for which Islamic State have claimed responsibility. Mourinho has admitted his sadness after the explosion in the foyer of the north-west venue but has insisted that his side will play on against Ajax in the Europa League final. ‘We’re all very sad about the tragic events last night; we can’t take out of our minds and hearts the victims and their families. ‘We have a job to do and will fly to Sweden to do that job. It’s a pity we cannot fly with the happiness we always have before a big game. ‘I know, even during my short time here, that the people of Manchester will pull together as one.’ In an internal email to club staff, executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward condemned the ‘senseless’ attack and also offered counselling to any staff members who may be affected. The club have also cancelled a party scheduled for the night of the match


Golfer’s wife shares pain behind emotional win: I’m an alcoholic by Hannah Withiam


RVING, Texas, May 23, 2017 - Billy Horschel let his wife do the talking after his show of emotion during Sunday’s PGA Tour victory, his first in three years. Her explanation on Monday afternoon, which she decided to share on her Twitter page out of fairness to her husband, shed light on a long-held family secret.

sober for me, but also marked a very hard fought year for Billy,” Brittany continued. “He deserves to soak in the glory of his win yesterday, throw his feet up and just let out a long deep breath. “Billy, you are my rock and the living testament of unconditional love. I am so blessed that God chose you to be my husband and father of our children.”

UMBAI, India - Worried about the security of the Indian cricket team during the ICC Champions Trophy in England, the Board of Control for Cricket in India has raised its concern with the International Cricket Council. The concern comes after the terrorist attack in Manchester. BCCI acting secretary Amitabh Chaudhary said that the board sent a message to ICC raising the concern.


“When I woke up, the first thing which I learnt was about these attacks. As soon as I was in the BCCI office we sent out a message raising our concerns about security of the Indian team’s travel, accommodation and the playing (arena). Thankfully ICC has responded to it within two hours. They have been sensitised about our concern,” Chaudhry said. “Obviously these attacks are in nature of terrorist attack. This is something which can affect any individual on the planet. The security concerns are that much more intense,” Chaudhry said. He also said that there is still no change in the team’s schedule but added that no squad member has raised the concern.

against Ajax.

have been affected.

Woodward wrote: ‘Manchester is a resilient city and I’m sure that its people will defy the wishes of those who have perpetrated this awful crime and demonstrate what a magnificent place this is.

‘As a sign of respect for the victims and the families, we have decided to cancel the event planned for tomorrow evening. We are sure that in the circumstances you will all support and understand the decision.’

‘The club provides counselling and support services in times of crisis; please do not be afraid to ask if you

The blast at the Manchester Arena, which took place at around 10.33pm on Monday - just after American

Brittany divulged her three-month stay in a South Florida treatment center last summer put Billy in the stressful position of supporting their family — including caring for their infant daughter and moving into their new home — as well as staying competitive on tour. Since claiming the Tour Championship for the FedExCup title in 2014, Horschel’s game had disappeared, missing four straight cuts before Sunday’s breakthrough at the AT&T Byron Nelson. Horschel defeated world No. 3 Jason Day on the first playoff hole after the Australian missed his par putt. “This weekend marked one year

“Proud of the journey that my wife is on!” he wrote. “She is an amazing mother and unbelievable wife!” With the fourth PGA victory of his career, Horschel moved into 44th place in the world rankings and earned a spot in June’s U.S. Open after failing to qualify for the last three major tournaments — 2016’s U.S. and British Opens and April’s Masters. After breaking down on the green at the Irving, Texas, course, one he said he disliked until Sunday, Horschel only hinted at the past year’s troubles. “Not at this time,” he said after the win, according to Golf Digest. “Just, life gets in the way sometimes and, you know, it’s truly special to be winning on something on a day like this that I honestly … I’m not able to talk about it right now. But it’s just lot of stuff happens in the last year and this is just — this is nice.” (-NYPost)

Khanna. “BCCI is in touch with ICC. Neeraj Kumarji is going to UK tonight. He’s in regular touch,” Khanna said. About the contract amounts of Indian players, Chaudhary said that they had “healthy discussions” with coach Anil Kumble about it and other aspects related to the team. “Various types of questions came up and opinions were given. The coach too gave his opinion. There was a good discussion. The (BCCI) office bearers and COA (members) were there. It will be placed in the right forum and when we take a decision we will tell you.” (Indian Express Sports) singer Grande had finished a performance to an audience which included hundreds of young children, has once again sparked security concerns. Manchester United’s players had their cars searched as they entered their Carrington training ground on Tuesday morning, while the club’s megastore was closed for the day and stadium tours were suspended. (-Daily SportsMail)

Badminton: Sudirman Cup

India registers stunning 4-1 win over former champions Indonesia OLD COAST (Australia): India dished out a dominating show to notch up a stunning 4-1 win over former champions Indonesia to keep themselves afloat for a knockout berth in the Sudirman Cup mixed team badminton championship here on Tuesday.


couldn’t even cross the group stage. Starting the proceedings, the new pair of Satwiksairaj and Ashwini produced another gritty performance to eke out a 22-20, 17-21, 21-19 over Tontowi Ahmad and Gloria Emanu-

World No. 1 Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo as Indonesia gained a point. However, Olympic silver-medallist PV Sindhu then defeated Fitriani Fitriani 21-9, 21-19 in a 42-minute wom-

After suffering an embarrassing 1-4 defeat against Denmark in the opening match on Monday, India desperately needed to win this contest against fifth seeds Indonesia. India rode on stupendous performances by K Srikanth, PV Sindhu and the experienced Ashwini Ponnappa, who won both the mixed doubles and women’s doubles match, alongwith Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and N Sikki Reddy respectively to outwit Indonesia for the first time in team events.

India, ranked ninth, have managed to reach the knockout stage of the tournament only once during the 2011 edition, while in the last two editions they

Horschel, 30, honored his wife’s courageous public statement in a Twitter post of his own.

The tournament begins on June 1 but India will play its first match on June 4 against Pakistan in Birmingham. The squad will depart for England on Wednesday.

“These concerns are so overwhelming that the team does not have to come and show its concern. We are all concerned,” he said.

If Indonesia defeat Denmark, it will come down to the number of matches, games and points as only two can qualify for the knockout stage from Group 1 D.

“I write this nervously, skeptically, but also proudly because I have embraced the woman I have become over the past year,” Horschel’s wife, Brittany, wrote in the post. “One year ago, I began a journey to a healthy me; mentally and physically. I will keep this simple, ‘I am an alcoholic.’ I say that now without shame. Admitting that to myself, family and friends has saved my life and my marriage.”

Nine days before the Champions Trophy begins in England, a terrorist attack took place in Manceshter by a suicide at a concert by US pop star Ariana Grande in killing at least 22 people, including children.

The BCCI is in constant touch with ICC and the BCCI’s Anti-Corruption Unit consultant and former Delhi Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar will leave for England on Tuesday, according to board’s acting president CK

Both Denmark and India now have won one match each and the knockout berths would be decided only after Wednesday’s clash between Indonesia and Denmark.

Billy Horschel breaks down after his victory at the Byron Nelson on Sunday (Photo: AP)

India’s team arrived in England on Wednesday (Photo: PTI)

PV Sindhu (Photo: Getty Images) elle Widjaja in a mixed doubles match that lasted an hour and six minutes. Former World No. 3 Srikanth, who had reached the finals at Singapore Open recently, saw off Jonatan Christie 21-15, 21-16 to make it 2-0 in India’s favour. Satwiksairaj and Chirag Shetty then suffered a 9-21, 17-21 loss against

Computer beats Chinese champion in game of Go UZHEN, China - A computer defeated China’s top player of the ancient board game Go on Tuesday, earning praise that it might have finally surpassed human abilities in one of the last games machines have yet to dominate.


Google’s AlphaGo won the first of three planned games this week against Ke Jie, a 19-year-old prodigy, in this town west of Shanghai. The computer will also face other top-ranked Chinese players during the fiveday event. AlphaGo beat Mr. Ke by a halfpoint, “the closest margin possible,” according to Demis Hassabis, founder of DeepMind, the

Google-owned company in London that developed AlphaGo. AlphaGo has improved markedly since it defeated South Korea’s top competitor last year and is a “completely different player,” Mr. Ke told reporters. “For the first time, AlphaGo was quite human-like,” Ke said. “In the past it had some weaknesses. But now I feel its understanding of Go

en’s singles match to guide India to an unassailable 3-1 lead in the five-match rubber. In the fifth match, the Syed Modi Grand Prix Gold runners-up pair of Ashwini and N Sikki Reddy then prevailed 21-12, 21-19 over World No. 15 Della Destiara Haris and Rosyita Eka Putri Sar to complete a 4-1 drubbing. (-Times of India) and the judgment of the game is beyond our ability.” Go players take turns putting white or black stones on a rectangular grid with 361 intersections, trying to capture territory and each other’s pieces by surrounding them. Competitors play until both agree there are no more places to put stones or one quits. The game, which originated in China more than 25 centuries ago, has avoided mastery by computers even as they surpassed humans in most other games. They conquered chess in 1997 when IBM Corp.’s Deep Blue system defeated champion Garry Kasparov. (-AP)



FRIDAY, May 26, 2017

Your Horoscope for the Week of May 26, 2017 READ YOUR COMPLETE HOROSCOPE

by Hardik Vyas, Astrologer Cell : 832-298-9950


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

Libra (R,T) 23 Sept to 22 Oct

Reflect on times when life was simpler & family values were followed. Take the time to include everyone close to you to participate. Your effort will mean a lot to someone special in your life. Others tend to learn from your example. If your actions & habits reflect a healthy lifestyle, you’ll influence & encourage others to take a closer look at their own situation. You’ll be able to accomplish tedious tasks you’ve been putting off, lately. Sometimes simpler is better, especially when it comes to matters of the heart.

Enjoy the attention, be confident in who you are & where you are going. Be sure to take your time to examine all of your possible options. As they say, “All that glitters is not necessarily gold”. Take a closer look behind the scenes & be sure of what you get yourself into. Investigate until you have satisfied all of your doubts. Even if you don’t decide to accept the offer, you know you have given the right impression to those who matter. Your professionalism will shine. Carry on the positive influence to your personal life.

Taurus (B,V,U) 21 April to 20 May

Scorpio (N,Y) 23 Oct to 21 Nov

You may have felt a little like a balloon, lately, getting ready to burst. Don’t sweat it! Delegate some of those tasks to others while maintaining the overall control of things. Relax and enjoy the scenery, while you contemplate your next move or direction. Feel confident in your ability to organize & get the job done effectively. You know some secrets to getting the job done with a minimum of effort on your part. Apply your honest approach to your personal life & you’ll be able to relax at home, as well.

You’ll accumulate personal power in some unexpected places. You may have been feeling a little down in the dumps lately. Events that happen this week, will now re-new your old spirit & confidence, to make you feel on top of the world. Don’t go overboard on the celebrating, you need to get your beauty rest. You’ll need to put out a lot of energy to keep up with the scheduled activities. Someone close to you may disappoint you or hurt your feelings. Take it into stride, don’t over react, just remember forgiveness is for those who really are sorry.

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

Gemini (K,CHH,GH) 21 May to 20 June You may notice a tendency to lose patience with anyone who distracts you. Rebels would do well to hide behind the rules. The odds of a risky venture are running against you this week. By giving the forbidden a rest, you ensure that it will be even more exciting next time you decide to venture your luck. Love and camaraderie could be enhanced by time spent apart. Team players get to gauge their own worth as solo artists. Spend the latter part of your week acting entirely out of self-interest.

Either others can’t follow your thinking or they’re just not interested in participating. Be direct about your opinions, but be careful of the impression that you leave behind. Your name could be mentioned for the wrong reasons. Realize that life’s too short to waste on trivialities & gossip. Put some of your positive energy into helping others find their way. Wake up from the uneasiness of a repeating dream of doom & gloom. You can make a real difference to others, if only you can get past your insecurities.

Capricorn (KH,J) 22 Dec to 20 Jan

Cancer (D,H) 21 June to 22 July Some sort of sadness of something passing or leaving. Your outburst surprises an associate who has never seen this side of you. Spontaneity drives you careening along a series of existing channels. Now that you know what’s possible, do what’s necessary. Be it in your professional or personal life, you’ll feel a significant loss. Bring with you an optimism in future endeavors. Instead of losing a best friend, you’ll really be gaining new allies. A new network of contacts will provide you with all the work and pleasure you need.

An interesting twist in your personal life. You’ll feel unusually popular & could start to feel more comfortable with who you are. Your natural charm & wit will be extremely sharp. Let an assuring tone of voice and sincere facial expressions take the place of a complex vocabulary. You want people to believe you as well as understand you. The facts will speak for themselves. You may be attracted to the experience & skills of other people. Be ready to learn new things in your life.

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

Leo (M) 23 July to 22 August The new routine that has you completely out of sorts. News and gossip fall quickly on hungry ears. Whether you play the hero or the fool, everyone will know about it. It doesn’t matter who started the whole thing. The Golden Rule has never looked more attractive. Don’t make any promises that you can’t deliver. You’ll need to relax yourself with comforting activities. Like bubble baths or a good aerobic workout will be just relaxing for you. You have to feed your physical needs in order to satisfy your emotional side.

Virgo (P) 23 August to 22 September Your sharp tongue can sometimes get you into trouble, tone down your emotions & present the situation a little more objectively. No need to let other walk all over you, but you must acknowledge their perspective. The square peg just can’t fit into the round hole. If you are unable to obtain the respect you need, you may need to relocate to a place where people will accept you as you are. An apparently limiting experience serves to broaden your overall vision. Family & domestic matters will be a true source of happiness for you this week.


Realize that things go around in a circle, sometimes. You subconscious can open new doors of discovery. Take the time to educate yourself on the fundamentals of meditation & you’ll find more enjoyment in your spiritual side. Speak your mind, especially to people who tend to pick on the weak or sick. You don’t yet have to choose between right and wrong, but that day will come, soon enough. Sleep on it, and listen to your dreams. The enormity of your actions will finally catch up with you. Yes, it really has been you behind all of those little miracles.

Pisces (D,CH,Z) 20 Feb to 20 March Friends may not be as forthcoming to your cause as you would like them to be. They may still need your shoulder to lean on. Listen to their excuses or reasons for their behavior, but don’t give into their logic for it. You know how to be supportive but you cannot continue to support everyone. Once you make that clear, you’ll learn a lesson you’ll never forget. People are just people, they are only human and their emotions can sometimes rule their actions. Forgive words of anger, realize that we all need to feel respect for each other.


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Voice of Asia Newsweekly e paper May 26 2017  

Voice of Asia Newspaper is based in Houston since 1987. We reach South Asian and Asian American families in Houston and surrounding cities i...

Voice of Asia Newsweekly e paper May 26 2017  

Voice of Asia Newspaper is based in Houston since 1987. We reach South Asian and Asian American families in Houston and surrounding cities i...